Family Film Guide: 'Guardians of the Galaxy' and 'Get on Up'

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‘Guardians of the Galaxy’

Rated: PG-13. 

Suitable for: Roughly 10-year-olds and up.   

What you should know: Marvel Studios taps into some of its lesser known characters, first introduced in 1969 as a team of heroes in the 31st century, for a highly anticipated movie. The cast includes Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, David Bautista and the voices of Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel. The story opens on Earth in 1988 but jumps 26 years and to various otherworldly locations.   

Language: A character starts the f-word but doesn’t finish it. A middle finger is raised and a dozen or so milder words, including the s-word and stronger versions of heck and darn, are used. 

Sexual situations and nudity: Nothing stronger than a kiss or near-kiss and a line about “pelvic sorcery.” A well-muscled character is always bare-chested. 

Violence/scary situations: Lots, including a young mother who is bald and dying in a hospital. Her young son is summoned to say goodbye and then is abducted outside by a spaceship. The rest of the movie has characters who are green, gray, blue or pink, often with scary looking features. The violence includes fights with kicks, head butts and punches along with Taser-like devices. Characters are threatened, imprisoned, impaled, injured or killed, some heavy-duty weapons are discharged and there are references to families having been murdered.   

Drug or alcohol use: Character imbibe some sort of alcoholic or similar drink. 

‘Get on Up’

Rated: PG-13. 

Suitable for: Mature tweens, teens and up. 

What you should know: Chadwick Boseman plays James Brown in a movie that tells the story of the soul singer although not in strict chronological order or with faithfulness to events. Mr. Boseman largely lip-syncs to the music but does so expertly and masters the fancy footwork, too. 

Language: Two f-words, one use of the N-word and about a dozen milder four-letter words. 

Sexual situations and nudity: The audience hears, but doesn’t see, some bedroom activity and a joke uses a double entendre to describe their activity. A few scenes are set at a brothel but nothing is shown. Flirtatious glances and dances are exchanged, and a stranger stares at a woman’s low-cut outfit. 

Violence/scary situations: A group of African-American children are blindfolded and each has an arm tied behind his back. They are then forced to box for the enjoyment of wealthy white people. Also, domestic and child abuse, the brief image of a man who hanged himself, a brawl, discharge of a gun, police chase and shot of a man who collapsed and died. 

Drug or alcohol use: Alcohol is consumed or shown, and someone laces a cigarette with an illegal substance. 


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