Soldier's Daughter Never Cries, A

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -2

This movie, based on a novel by Kaylie Jones, is apparently autobiographical. Author Bill Willis (Kris Kristofferson) and his wife, Marcella (Barbara Hershey), live in Paris and decide to adopt a five-year-old boy, Benoit (Samuel Gruen), so their daughter Channe (Luisa Conlon) will have a brother. At first Channe resents the attention lavished on young Benoit, but slowly warms up to him. Bill is thrilled when Benoit asks to have his named changed to Billy. As teenagers, Billy and Channe (Jesse Bradford and Leelee Sobieski) have trouble fitting in with their peers. She develops a strange, close friendship with another misfit, Francis (Anthony Roth Costanzo), who lives with his very eccentric single mother. Dressed in elaborate costumes, Francis is always belting out operatic arias. Bill decides to move the family back to the United States because of his heart problems. A SOLDIER'S DAUGHTER relates disjointed family events that introduce many subplots that go nowhere. Good acting and beautiful scenery are not likely to be enough to make this a box office hit.

The children idolize their open-minded father. He allows Francis to spend the night on a cot in Channe's bedroom on many occasions, realizing the effeminate boy is more like a sister to his daughter. Later, she confesses to her father that she has had sex with several boys at the new high school. He simply advises her to wait for someone she really cares about. When Channe does, Bill insists the new boyfriend stay overnight so the teenagers can have sex at home instead of in the backseat of a car. Channe's promiscuity is implied by scenes of her kissing boys passionately. Young Channe has a strange encounter with a neighbor boy who unsuccessfully tries to get her to take her clothes off, and the boy unzips his pants off-camera. Bill's salty language accounts for most of the 11 obscenities and 15 regular profanities. Violence is mild and moderate, with Billy getting slammed into his school locker once and kids occasionally pushing and shoving. This tale implies that moral guidelines are unnecessary as long as a family is loving and supportive.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
October Films, 65 Bleecker St., NY, NY 10112

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 (15) times-Mild 8, Moderate 7

Obscene Language: Many (11) times (f-word 5, s-word 1, other 5)

Profanity: Many (18) times-Regular 15 (GD 7, G 2, Christ sake 2, C 1, Jeez 1, Jesus 2; Exclamatory 3

Violence: None

Sex: None; Implied Few times (teenager shown in passionate embraces that imply leading to sex)

Nudity: None; Near Nudity Few times (low-cut gowns, girl in underwear)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: High school teenagers kissing; father-daughter conversations about sexual behavior; boy tries to persuade young girl to undress; self-gratification shown without nudity, sensuous behavior in opera production.

Drugs: Many times (alcohol drinking at parties, at home and in bars; teenagers sip champagne with parents)

Other: Teenage girl's passage into womanhood celebrated with family; housekeeper has unnatural attachment to young girl; parents very open-minded about daughter's sexual behavior

Running Time: 124 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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