Thousand Acres, A

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -1 1/2

Sales of anti-depressant medications may soar if A THOUSAND ACRES becomes a hit. A talented cast includes Michelle Pfeiffer as Rose, the eldest of three daughters of hateful Larry Cook (Jason Robards). Jessica Lange plays Ginny, the middle daughter, and Jennifer Jason Leigh is the youngest, Caroline. To the surrounding Iowa farming community, widower Cook is a highly respected, third-generation farmer. Rose has buried her hate for her father from even her own sisters. She and Ginny live in farm houses with their husbands on their father's land, making both families financially dependent on Cook. Caroline moved away, became a lawyer and is about to get married. When the senile old farmer announces he is deeding the farm over to his three children, the family's joy is short-lived as Cook decides he wants to regain control. Marriages deteriorate and the once inseparable sisters turn on each other as their lives crumble into total chaos. The film's themes of hidden rage, vindictiveness, and betrayal make it an emotional and depressing viewing experience that will have limited box office appeal.

Cook is a nasty-tempered man who sexually abused two of his daughters as teenagers. The abuse is described a few times by one of the daughters. They never confront him, but he seethes with confused rage when they turn on him. Instead of attempting any kind of reconciliation, family members run away, go to court or curl up and die alone. When Ginny's marriage begins its downhill slide, she begins an adulterous affair with a handsome bachelor. They are shown a few times meeting in the nearby woods, where sex is implied. Then she discovers her sister is also having an affair with him. A doctor examining a woman's breast is brief but very graphic. Ginny and Rose eventually reconcile, but the family ties are almost non-existent by then. Many crudities, profanities and obscenities, as always, are gratuitous. A fight scene during a church supper emphasizes just how out of control Cook is, and Rose's husband's drinking binge proves fatal. Perhaps the most depressing moment in A THOUSAND ACRES comes when a dying woman proudly exclaims that her one accomplishment was "not to forgive the unforgivable." What a message that sends to all of us needing forgiveness.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Buena Vista (Touchstone Pictures), 500 S. Buena Vista, Burbank, CA 91521

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 (19) times - Mild 7, Moderate 12

Obscene Language: Many (11) times - f-word 4, s-word 5, other 2

Profanity: Many (10) times - regular 6 (GD 3, G 1, J 2), exclamatory 4 (Oh my God 2, by God 1, God knows 1)

Violence: Few times - Mild & Moderate (group fight at church supper; man dies in car crash; pushing and shoving)

Sex: None, but implied few times (married woman shown with other man few times, no nudity)

Nudity: Once (doctor examines woman's breasts)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times (crude remarks about sex; woman describes father's molestation)

Drugs: Few times (alcohol drinking; drunk man drinks and drives)


Running Time: 103 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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