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Romancing the Stone Review

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 12+

Well-written romance/adventure is tons of fun.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that kids will see violence, profanity, sexual situations, and stereotypical depictions of and references to Latinos in this otherwise well-written adventure movie. The baddest of the bad guys has his hand bitten off by a crocodile, which is then completely devoured (off-screen) by a pit full of crocodiles. There's also a fair bit of swearing, a couple of stabbings, and gun fights. Breasts are visible through a wet cotton top, and there's plenty of sexual innuendo. The two leads end up together in bed, though there's no nudity. Latinos are the swarthy, nasty bad guys. The term "Spico" is used by one character to describe Latin Americans.

  • Families can talk about how stereotypes are used in film. Why are Latinos stereotyped as nasty bad guys in this movie? What effect did their stereotyping have on how you perceived them?
  • How are stereotypes useful to filmmakers? How are they harmful to thegroups being stereotyped? Even if you are aware that characters arebeing stereotyped, do you think seeing those portrayals impact how youperceive those groups?

The good stuff
  • message true2

    Messages: Although there's some stereotyping (for example, Latinos are the swarthy, nasty bad guys) the movie ultimately has a positive message about loyalty and the power of love.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: The lead characters are definitely flawed -- Jack is a scoundrel with a shady past, and Joan is idealistic and overly cautious -- but they eventually bring out the best in each other.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: A couple of stabbings and plenty of gun fights. The baddest of the bad guys has his hand bitten off by a crocodile, which is then completely devoured (off-screen) by a pit full of crocodiles. Frequent danger and peril.

  • sex false3

    Sex: Breasts are visible through a wet cotton top. A good deal of sexual innuendo -- like a man's face landing in a woman's lap. The two leads end up together in bed with implied nudity, though sensitive parts are strategically covered.

  • language false2

    Language: Plentiful use of words like "god," "bastards," and "bitch." The term "Spico" is used by one character to describe Latin Americans.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Burning marijuana to keep warm, jokes about smoking pot back in college. Some drinking.

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