Blood and Wine

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -2 1/2

With his wine business in Miami going belly up, Alex Gates (Jack Nicholson) decides to resort to desperate measures. He teams up with professional thief Victor Spansky (Michael Caine) to steal a diamond necklace worth a million dollars from a wealthy customer. Their robbery is successful, and Alex is preparing to fly to New York with his fiery Cuban mistress, Gabrielle (Jennifer Lopez), when he's confronted by his angry wife, Suzanne (Judy Davis). They get into a violent fight where Alex ends up unconscious. Suzanne throws some clothes into a suitcase and she and adult son Jason (Stephen Dorff) escape to Key Largo. It turns out the necklace was stashed in that suitcase, so the rest of the movie features Alex and Victor's pursuit of this ill-gotten gain and some dangerous confrontations involving all of these participants. Caine turns in a compelling performance as Victor. With a violent cough demonstrating that he's on his last legs, Victor is hoping this last heist will help him die with a shred of dignity. The story itself is downbeat and very thin, however, with not enough background material about the characters to engage our emotions.

Although a sexual context is present throughout Blood and Wine, there is surprisingly little sexual content. Only a passionate dance between Alex and Gabrielle suggests their apparently intense extra-marital affair. Violence is more prevalent, however, including two scenes where Alex is brutally assaulted with a golf club. A bad car accident with bloody injuries claims one life, another character is smothered to death with a pillow and a man has his legs crushed by a boat. The dialogue is littered with frequent foul language, including 18 regular profanities and 28 obscenities. Combined with its overwhelmingly negative tone and the excessively violent behavior, Blood and Wine is not a film that will lift anyone's spirits.

Preview Reviewer: Mark Perry
Fox Searchlight Pictures, Box 900, Beverly Hills, CA 90213

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: Several (8) times - Mild 2, Moderate 6

Obscene Language: Many (28) times - f-word 15, s-word 11, other 2

Profanity: Many (23) times - Regular 18 (G-d 7, J 3, JC 3, G 3, C 2), Exclamatory 5

Violence: Many times - Moderate and Severe (husband and wife exchange slaps, man hit with golf club, man assaulted, rough treatment, brutal fistfights, bad car accident with bloody injuries, man smothered to death with pillow, man's legs crushed)

Sex: None

Nudity: None; near nudity once with woman in underwear

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times (man and mistress dance passionately)

Drugs: Many times (smoking, wine and alcohol drinking)

Other: None

Running Time: 100 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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