Running Scared

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: -1

Content: -4

Paul Walker (The Fast and the Furious, Eight Below) stars in this fast-paced crime drama from critically acclaimed director Wayne Kramer (The Cooler). Walker plays a low-level mobster who, in order to save his family, must recover a gun used in a mob hit before its found by his bosses or the cops.

Normally, I like sitting on an aisle seat at film screenings. Its a psychological thing, because while it is my job to sit through the entire movie, I like knowing that if I need to escape, I can. Alas, last evening at the screening of Running Scared, I sat right in the middle of the row. There was no escape. Bombarded by a storyline that included drug warfare, domestic unrest, child abuse, abusive pimps and their abused inventory, abusive cops, abusive crooked cops, abusive language that utilized one particular swear word nearly 300 times, and abusive brutality that included enough beatings and shootings to make Kill Bill look like an episode of Mr. Rogerss Neighborhood, I found myself trapped in perhaps the most excessively violent film Ive ever seen. To top it off, there was a loving couple who abducted children in order to make pornographic films with them before chopping them up.

When that subplot was introduced, Id had enough, and looked to make my escape. But the aisle was so narrow that it would have caused a commotion for me to attempt a getaway. Of course, had I left, I couldnt report the ecstatic response from the audience when the kiddy porn couple got blown away by a woman who kept calling them sick f---- before murdering them.

Oh, did I mention that one psycho, a meth-maker who beats his wife and son on a regular basis, is obsessed with John Wayne and beats his kid because he doesnt like westerns. Oh, there are so many other details I could go into, but havent I already done my job? Is anybody really going to ask, Hows the acting?

I suppose there are people who enjoy violence to the extreme in movies. This would be their film. As for me, God understands that this is my work and He shelters me, protects me from the damage that can be done by viewing such content. But I found myself saying, Jesus, Im sorry I brought You here.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
New Line Cinema

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: there are a lot of crude sexual remarks made by the gangsters, the pimps, the whores and the cops

Obscene Language: after 300 swear words, mostly variations of the f-word, I lost count; oh, a few of those curse words came from adolescents

Profanity: around twenty misuses of Gods name or Christs, enough for you to realize that none of these people is very religious.

Violence: Here is where I could take up an entire page. Suffice it to say, nearly every character gets their turn at beating or shooting someone. Children are placed in peril and a kid even shoots his dangerous stepfather. Blood: There are shootings, stabbings and at one point, gangsters hold down the films protagonist and have hockey players shoot pucks at his face. Oh, yeah, theres blood.

Sex: a husband unzips his wifes jeans and begins performing oral sex, then regular sex before they are interrupted; theres pole dancing in a seedy bar, and prostitutes are seen in provocative clothing; it is implied that a man and wife kidnap kids, make videos of them in lewd acts, then kill them and cut them up.

Nudity: nudity in the bar, including one explicit frontal shot

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: there is a lot of sexual dialogue

Drugs: a meth dealer is stoned on the drug in several scenes; drugs are being sold; people are abusing alcohol in several scenes

Other: I fear that by saying this is one of the most abusive films Ive ever sat through, some will become interested Just how bad could it be? Well, theyve been warned. To be serious, people ask me, What do you do after you see such material? I pray, I listen to music by Handel and Mozart and as soon as I can, I hug my 15-month-old niece. I try to put the teachings of Philippians 4:8 into practice.

Running Time: 3 hours okay,
Intended Audience: I hate to think

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