What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Only God Forgives is an extremely violent drama from Danish filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn. Like 2011's Drive, Refn's latest movie stars Ryan Gosling as a tortured man and features scenes of unflinching violence. The brutality can be startling and includes several moments of vengeance and torture. Men use knives, swords, guns, and their fists to injure, maim, and kill. A client brutally kills a young prostitute, and another man pays a prostitute to pleasure herself while his arms are bound. The language is strong, particularly from Kristin Scott Thomas' character, a grieving (and vengeful) mother who likes to say "f--k," "c--t," "bitch," and much more.
- Families can talk about the amount of violence in Only God Forgives. What's the impact of the bloody, close-up scenes, especially compared to the more popular style of loud, stylized, but not necessarily realistic action violence?
- Refn has been criticized for his depiction of women. How do the female characters here compare to the ones in Drive? Are any of the women believable?
- Talk about how violence begets more violence. Did anyone learn any valuable lessons? What is the filmmaker trying to say about revenge and forgiveness?