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"THIRTEEN DAYS"
(2000) (Kevin Costner, Bruce Greenwood) (PG-13)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild None Heavy Moderate Heavy
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Minor None Heavy None Heavy
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Minor Moderate Minor Moderate Moderate


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: The President of the United States and his top advisors try to figure out how to cope with the Cuban Missile Crisis of the early '60s and avoid escalating a potentially catastrophic situation.
PLOT:
It's October 1962 and the White House has just received positive photographic evidence that the Soviets have moved nuclear missiles into Cuba and are preparing them as a threat to the U.S. mainland. As such, President John F. Kennedy (BRUCE GREENWOOD) has called a series of emergency meetings with his brother, Attorney General Bobby Kennedy (STEVEN CULP), and his most trusted aide, Special Assistant Kenneth P. O'Donnell (KEVIN COSTNER).

With time working against them as the Soviets covertly work to get the missiles - that could reach the U.S. in five minutes and kill more than 80 million people -- active, the three men meet with various White House and military officials who comprise the Executive Committee of the National Security Council, or ExComm for short.

Among them is Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara (DYLAN BAKER); Secretary of State Dean Rusk (HENRY STROZIER); Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Maxwell Taylor (BILL SMITROVICH); Special Assistant for National Security Affairs McGeorge Bundy (FRANK WOOD); U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Adlai Stevenson (MICHAEL FAIRMAN); and advisors/counsel Ted Sorensen (TIM KELLEHER) and Dean Acheson (LEN CARIOU).

Soliciting advice from them as well as chief of staff of the United States Air Force, Gen. Curtis LeMay (KEVIN CONWAY), the three sort through their various options of how to deal with this new and unexpected threat. As the days pass and the tension increases as Soviet ships seem determined to break the naval blockage that Kennedy has ordered around Cuba, the President, his brother and Kenny do what they can to keep the situation from getting out of control while hoping that their choices don't cause a war to break out between the Soviet Union and the U.S.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of anyone in the cast or are history buffs interested in the Cuban Missile Crisis, they just might. That said, it doesn't seem like this will be on most kids' "must see" lists.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For brief strong language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • KEVIN COSTNER plays the Special Assistant to the President, a man who offers his advice to his longtime friend, drinks some and gets testy under pressure, which also causes him to use some profanity (one instance of which is strong).
  • BRUCE GREENWOOD plays President Kennedy who must contemplate his course of action in responding to the Cuban Missile crisis. He briefly uses some profanity.
  • STEVEN CULP plays his brother, Bobby, the Attorney General, a calculating and opinionated character in the President's administration.
  • DYLAN BAKER plays Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara who offers his advice and opinions on how to deal with the matter.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    The following is a quick summary of the content found in this PG-13 rated drama. Profanity earns the film that rating, due to 1 use of the "f" word, although other profanities and colorful phrases are also present. Various scenes (and perhaps the overall topic/mood of the film) may be suspenseful to some viewers, some of which involve enemies firing at U.S. aircraft, damaging some in one instance and destroying a plane and killing the pilot in another.

    Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, while some drinking and smoking also occurs. Beyond that, most of the film's remaining categories have little or nothing in the way of major objectionable content. Nonetheless, should you still be concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone in your home, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed content listings for specific examples of what occurs in the film.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Kenny brings over a drink for himself and Bobby.
  • People have drinks at a reception, including Kenny and Adlai Stevenson.
  • Kenny pours a drink for J.F.K.
  • Kenny pours himself a drink.
  • Kenny pours himself another drink.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • None.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Most of what's included below involves our seeing the results of various bad attitudes rather than someone actually personally displaying them.
  • The Soviets place nuclear missiles in Cuba to be used against the U.S. and then lie about their presence.
  • Kenny's son tries to get him to sign his report card (with less than stellar grades) by stating that it's just a permission slip.
  • Certain military officials make aggressive military gestures (without the President's approval) presumably hoping to escalate the situation so that they can strike against Cuba.
  • Kenny gets a pilot to lie about whether he was shot at during a sortie over Cuba (so that the military can't use that as a reason to attack).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • The overall story and the tension that builds through it might be unsettling or suspenseful to some viewers.
  • Two pilots fly a low-level photography sortie over Cuba and are fired upon by anti-aircraft guns and soldiers with guns.
  • Ships in the American blockage spot a Russian sub on sonar and react to that (all accompanied by some dramatic/suspenseful music).
  • Cubans/Soviet forces fire missiles at a U.S. plane flying overhead. As such, the pilot has to repeatedly take evasive maneuvers while trying to avoid those missiles.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Nuclear Missiles & Explosions: Seen in a montage during the opening credits.
  • Rifles: Carried by guards in the U.S. and by Cubans/Soviets in Cuba.
  • Jet fighters (equipped with missiles): Seen being readied for flight.
  • Anti-aircraft guns/Handheld machine guns, etc.: Used to fire upon U.S. planes as they fly a photographic sortie.
  • Missiles: Fired at a U.S. plane (with one eventually destroying it).
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "You worthless piece of sh*t," "Horsesh*t," "Sure as sh*t would," "Moron," "Bastard," "What the crap is going on?" "Kick 'em in the ass," "Fat ass," "Red bastards," "Pain in the ass," "I'll be damned," "You're damn right," "Nobody gives a rat's ass," "Pisses the world off," "Jeez," "Balls" (testicles), "What the hell is he talking about?" and "Freaking."
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A heavy amount of dramatic and suspenseful music plays during the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 1 "f" word, 9 "s" words, 9 hells, 8 asses (2 used with "hole"), 6 damns, 3 S.O.B.s, 1 crap, 15 uses of "G-damn," 7 of "Jesus," 6 of "Jesus Christ," 2 of "Christ" and 1 use of "Jesus, Mary and Joseph" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • There's a brief joke about McNamara sitting on Bobby Kennedy's lap in a crowded car and the latter not getting excited.
  • SMOKING
  • All sorts of minor & miscellaneous characters smoke in various scenes throughout the film.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Kenny worries about his family's safety during the crisis, while his wife worries about him.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The historical accuracy of the real-life events as they're portrayed here.
  • The options given to President Kennedy about how to respond to the crisis and whether he chose the right one (beyond the one he chose solving the problem).
  • VIOLENCE
  • Two pilots fly a low-level photography sortie over Cuba and are fired upon by anti-aircraft guns and soldiers with guns (one of the jets is damaged by bullets, but returns home safely).
  • A U.S. ship fires a warning shot above a Soviet ship that's crossed the blockade line.
  • Soviet/Cuban forces fire missiles at a U.S. plane, eventually hitting and destroying it, killing the pilot.



  • Reviewed November 27, 2000 / Posted January 12, 2001

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