Brokeback Mountain

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2 1/2

Content: -4

This may be billed as an epic love story, but its no chick flick. When cowboys Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger) are hired to herd sheep on Wyomings Brokeback Mountain in the summer of 1963, both men expect to work hard and spend sleepless nights protecting sheep. But neither anticipates having a romantic relationship with the other. With Ennis engaged to marry Alma Beers (Michelle Williams) and Jack preparing for the upcoming rodeo season, these mens men seem unlikely candidates for the gay lifestyle. When their boss (Randy Quaid) discovers their secret, he abruptly ends their herding season. The two come down from the mountain denying their feelings for each other and head their separate ways. Both marry, have children and pursue the more traditional life thats socially accepted, but a postcard from Twist in Texas to Del Mar in Wyoming reconnects the two and starts a 20-year homosexual relationship that they hide under the guise of fishing trips to Brokeback Mountain.

Ang Lees film is a masterpiece in writing, acting and cinematography. While beautifully made, its hard to watch because of its deeply disturbing message and content. From the excellent writing of Pulitzer-prize-winning authors Dianna Ossana and Larry McMurtry to the screen talent of Jake Gyllenhaal, Heath Ledger, Randy Quaid, Michelle Williams and Anne Hathaway, who plays Twists wife, the telling of this story is excellent, which makes the movies message even more dangerous. The film graphically shows a sexual relationship between two men and presents it as something that should have been allowed to flourish openly in society rather than be squelched by hypocritical people. In one scene, a shirtless man is lying down behind another man having unconventional sex with him. Several scenes portray two men open-mouth kissing, and other scenes show the same homosexual men having sex with a wife or a girlfriend. The film uses these sensual scenes and extreme language to champion an illicit relationship between two men who are cheating on their wives to pursue their immorality. And, perhaps most disturbing, it invites viewers to root for the two to be together.

Preview Reviewer: Suzanne Keffer
Focus Features

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (20) mild (hell 7, damn 3); strong (-ss 4, b-tch 2, SOB 4)

Obscene Language: Many (30+) moderate (p-ss 2); strong (f-word 20+, s-word 4, d-ck 1, b-lls 1, p-ssy 2)

Profanity: Several (7) strong (GD 5, J 1, C 1)

Violence: Several mild (man shoves man, man punches man and gives him a bloody nose, man fights with two other men); moderate (a story is told but not shown of a man who is beaten up and found dismembered and dead in a ditch); strong (a story is told and shown from a distance of a man who is beaten with a tire tool and killed)

Sex: Many mild (man kisses another man multiple times, man and a woman have sex on their honeymoon night, man and woman kiss multiple times); moderate (man kisses another man passionately multiple times); strong (intense scene involving two men without shirts who have sex with motions and sounds of passion, man and a woman kiss and have sex in the back of a car)

Nudity: Several mild (woman takes off her shirt and her bare back is shown); moderate (two men without shirts caress each other, womans breasts are shown, another womans breasts are shown, side view of two naked men jumping into a river)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Several mild (men talk about the fact that even though they had sex together, theyre not queer); moderate (man flirts with another man by lassoing him with a rope and making sexual innuendos); strong (man talks openly about his sexual desire for another man)

Drugs: Several mild (men drink around a fire, people smoke in a bar, men and women drink in a bar); moderate (man gets drunk and cant ride his horse into the mountains)

Other: Churchgoers are characterized as judgmental and small-minded

Running Time: 134 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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