[Screen It]


(1997) (Demi Moore, Viggo Mortensen) (R)

Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Tense Scenes
Mild Heavy Heavy Heavy Extreme
Mild None Mild Minor Extreme
Smoking Tense Family
Topics To
Talk About
Mild Moderate None Mild Extreme

Drama: A female officer tries to survive the rigors and harsh physical training of being the first woman Navy SEAL.
Lt. Jordan O'Neil (DEMI MOORE) is a Navy intelligence officer who becomes a political pawn when Texas U.S. Senator Lillian DeHaven (ANNE BANCROFT) decides the military's nowhere near being gender integrated. As head of the Armed Service Committee, DeHaven has the power to make heads role. Thus, the male military brass comply with her demands, but decide to make Jordan go through the Navy SEAL training program, believing full well that she'll be one of the sixty percent who drop out. While Royce (JASON BEGHE), her boyfriend and fellow officer, doesn't want her to go, she sees this as her last chance to get active duty experience that will help her get future promotions. So she goes off for training where she meets Master Chief John Urgayle (VIGGO MORTENSEN), a tough as nails instructor whose only goal is to break the spirit of every candidate there. Although she's shunned by her male companions, Jordan perseveres, much to the chagrin of DeHaven who turns out to have been using her for her own political gains. Once learning that, Jordan does what she can to prove that a woman can make it through the rigorous training and become a SEAL.
If they're fans of Demi or military movies, they probably will.
The reason was not available, but we'd guess it was for rough violence and profanity.
  • DEMI MOORE plays a Navy officer who goes through the rigors and hell of the toughest military training anywhere. In doing so, she's subjected to harsh treatment, and responds back with occasional strong profanity and some physical force. While she gets a bit gruff at times, she's a good role model for young girls as she overcomes the stiff odds and succeeds.
  • ANNE BANCROFT plays a conniving politician who uses Jordan just as a chess piece for her own political good.
  • VIGGO MORTENSEN plays the drill instructor who belittles the candidates and at one point goes way beyond what's morally or legally right in beating Jordan to a pulp.


    OUR TAKE: 7.5 out of 10
    This is a surprisingly good and enjoyable film. I went into this as not the biggest Demi Moore fan and feared that it was going to be another instance of watching her try to wedge her way into a role the way she did in "Striptease." Lean and all-business, she's often not the most fun actress to watch on screen. Those qualities, however, actually lend themselves to her character. Of course she does run the fine line -- as she did in Striptease -- of many people in the audience snickering at her, instead of rooting for her, simply because they'll think "here's big Ms. Hollywood wanting to play soldier now." To some extent that's true. We are subjected to a montage, thankfully brief, where we are forced to watch Demi showing that ripped, glistening body as she does pull ups, hanging sit ups, and one-armed pushups (which, unless some wires or other special effects were used, is quite impressive). Nevertheless, after she gets the stuffing beat out of her during an out of control training exercise, and then looks like hell and manages to fight back, the audience suddenly falls in behind her, as do the other characters in the movie. That's truly the defining moment in the film, and is one of the more effective and disturbing scenes showcased in any movie this year. Obviously, we've seen all of the military training before, what with the sergeants barking orders and belittling the soldiers. And we've seen where the one soldier is the outcast and must work hard to overcome special treatment or the hated or indifference of the other soldiers. But there's something about the way director Ridley Scott ("Blade Runner," "Alien," "Thelma and Louise") has fashioned this production that makes most of that seem fresh and interesting. Having showcased strong female characters in his past films, Scott is at home here and Moore gives him exactly what he needs. The male military brass are the standard set of gruff, cigar smoking old fogeys, but Mortensen's take as the belligerent drill instructor stands out. Going beyond the stereotype, but still including classic lines such as "When I want your opinion, I'll give it to you" and "The best thing about pain....it lets you know you're not dead yet," his extreme and brutal treatment of the candidates, in particular Jordan, shows a troubled individual and this fine actor plays that well. The staged military lessons are surprisingly effective and often taut with suspense even though we know there's no real enemy. Of course there's the required "real" military encounter that occurs at the film's end, but it works fairly well here and neatly wraps up what few loose ends were hanging around. The only complaint is the odd shooting style that Scott embraces during the fighting, a strange, rapid zooming in and out that's much more annoying and distracting than whatever he had in mind for its use. That's a minor objection for this film, however, that's quite compelling and very well made. We give "G.I. Jane" a 7.5 out of 10.
    This film is surprisingly brutal even for one depicting military hazing. One sequence where instructors pose as the enemy and torture and beat the candidates is particularly disturbing and will upset many viewers. In it, Moore is literally, and quite visually, beaten to a pulp. Due to this, we rate violence as extreme, and the tense scenes category gets a heavy rating. While the content that's listed in imitative behavior would truly be bad if imitated, the likelihood is probably lean, and thus the mild rating for low probability. Sex/nudity rates as mild despite the brief, darkened glimpse of Moore's bare buttocks while showering. As can be expected of a military movie, profanity is extreme, and there's the stereotypical material involving the male soldiers and officers treating the lone female candidate poorly. Since there are a few rough scenes in this film and many girls will probably want to see it (due to Demi), we strongly suggest that you read through the scene listings to determine whether you or your children should see this film.

  • DeHaven pours herself and Jordan cocktails, but only DeHaven drinks.
  • Jordan drinks wine while in a bathtub with Royce.
  • Urgayle has a drink of liquor while getting his hair cut, and again in another scene.
  • People drink wine at a Washington reception.
  • Urgayle and another instructor drink whiskey straight from the bottle.
  • People drink in a bar while Jordan and the others drink beer and then shots of liquor.
  • Jordan drinks beer with others at a small beach party.
  • Jordan drinks whiskey.
  • The graduates drink after their training is completed.
  • Jordan and other candidates have bloody scrapes on their bodies during the initial stages of their training.
  • After being "captured" by their instructors, many of the candidates are bloody as they're actually tortured.
  • Jordan is extremely bloody (with lots running from her mouth and nose) after Urgayle beats her. She then inflicts some damage on him and his face is also very bloody.
  • A soldier is shot in the head with a quick bloody burst and Urgayle is shot in the leg with the same results. Later we see that bloody wound and his bloody hand.
  • The top male navy officers aren't happy about the situation involving Jordan, and jokingly say that she won't make it through SEAL training. Likewise, they set it up so that she has easier standards to meet, but only because she's a woman.
  • Likewise, her classmates also despise her at first and make lewd comments and gestures (a guy licks his tongue at her). When she first sits down in the mess hall, the guys get up and move to another table. In another instance, a man doesn't help her across an obstacle wall after she helped everyone else.
  • Royce isn't initially supportive of her decision to pursue the training and says that he's not sure he can wait around three years for her if she succeeds, and wonders why she wants to go off "and play soldier."
  • Some may view the instructors tough and often brutal treatment of the candidates as both, and while they do go to extremes, they defend their behavior/attitudes by stating that they're preparing the candidates for the worst case scenarios.
  • DeHaven turns out not to be as supportive of Jordan as first believed and actually tries to derail her training.
  • Some viewers may be uneasy at some of the harsh "training" that occurs. See "Violence" for such listings.
  • An obstacle course scene at night that includes machine gun fire and explosives will be tense to some viewers.
  • A training exercise on Captiva Island proves to be tense as it feels like a real military excursion as Jordan and the others try to sneak up on a swamp outpost. Later they're captured and severely tortured by their instructors.
  • An actual military skirmish breaks out and Jordan and Urgayle have several close encounters with Libyan soldiers, including one where she's almost discovered while hiding from one soldier.
  • Machine guns/Explosives: Used during training and later during an actual military engagement where many people are killed. See "Violence" for details.
  • Phrases: "Piss you off," "Balls" (testicles), "Brain fart," "Moron," "Nigger" (said by a black man), "Shut up," and "Suck my d*ck" (said by Jordan after being beaten by the master chief).
  • Some counter prisoner training may prove imitative to kids: Jordan is blindfolded and her nose is covered as water is poured into her mouth, Jordan and others are captured and plastic bags are put over their heads, Jordan's head is dunked and held underwater, etc...
  • Jordan shaves her long hair down to her scalp.
  • None.
  • There is a mild amount of suspenseful music in a few scenes.
  • One song contains the line, "The bitch is gone...."
  • There may be more profanity than listed below as many comments are yelled through megaphones that we couldn't understand.
  • At least 35 "f" words, 22 "s" words, 4 slang terms for male genitals (the "d" and "c" words), 2 slang terms for breasts (the "t" word), 13 hells, 7 "ass" words (1 using "hole"), 5 damns, and 9 uses of "G-damn," and 1 use each of "Christ," "God," and "Jesus" as exclamations.
  • DeHaven asks Jordan about "batting for the other side" (ie. Her sexual orientation) but Jordan says that she does has a boyfriend. Later, however, false accusations are made that she and a female officer are having an affair.
  • Jordan and Royce take a bath together, but we see no nudity or sexual activity.
  • A candidate mentions that he's having a sexual fantasy while watching Jordan do pushups.
  • Condoms are placed over gun barrels not with sexual implications, but to keep the water out of them.
  • Jordan's ample bosom is seen in a small bra during a physical.
  • Jordan's bare butt and the sides of her breasts are seen as she showers (full rear nudity).
  • Many top Navy officers smoke cigars in several scenes, and officers, instructors and some candidates also smoke cigarettes.
  • People smoke in a meeting with DeHaven.
  • Jordan smokes a cigar and then passes it to Royce who smokes it.
  • None.
  • The pros and/or cons of having both sexes in the military, and the instructors brutal treatment of the candidates.
  • Large metal barrels roll over several candidates, injuring them, as they try to push the barrels up steep inclines.
  • During the initial stages of the training, the instructors are often brutal with the candidates: Some are pushed underwater, others are pushed from chairs, others are hit or kicked, etc...
  • Machine guns are fired and explosives set off above or near the candidates as they go through a training course.
  • The training gets more severe for the candidates. In one scene, Jordan is blindfolded, her nose is covered, and water is poured into her mouth to make her not afraid of drowning should she be tortured as a P.O.W.
  • Jordan and the others are "captured" by their instructors (in a mock P.O.W. camp) and have plastic bags put over their heads. Later, they're severely tortured. One man's bloody leg is repeatedly gouged and he is repeatedly punched and kicked. Likewise, Jordan gets the beating of her life. The master chief repeatedly hits her and then slams her into a pole. He gets her into a stranglehold and then bangs her head into a door. He then holds her head underwater for a long time. Jordan then kicks Urgayle in the groin, face and gut and in the groin again after he seemingly was going to rape her (he had her bent over and then cut off her belt).
  • An actual military skirmish breaks out and many Libyan soldiers are killed from gunfire and explosions.

  • Reviewed August 4, 1997

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