[Screen It]

 

"A BEAUTIFUL MIND"
(2001) (Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connolly) (PG-13)

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


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: A brilliant but self-absorbed mathematician and his beautiful wife try to figure out if he's delusional or really is working on a dangerous, top-secret government case.
PLOT:
It's 1947 and John Nash (RUSSELL CROWE) is a brilliant mathematician who's won a scholarship to attend Princeton and study under Professor Helinger (JUDD HIRSCH). While his fellow classmates, Richard Sol (ADAM GOLDBERG), Bender (ANTHONY RAPP) and Martin Hansen (JOSH LUCAS) don't deny his intelligence, they do find him and his obsessive quest to think differently as peculiar. Charles Herman (PAUL BETTANY), his charismatic roommate, however, gets along fine with him as he tries to get John to have some fun.

John eventually comes up with a revolutionary economic theory that lands him a job at the MIT campus of Wheeler Defense Labs where he, Sol and Bender work as contractors for the U.S. Government. One such job occurs in 1953 at the Pentagon where John is asked to break some Soviet codes. Seeing how good he is at that, covert agent William Parcher (ED HARRIS) of the Department of Defense puts John on a top-secret case to find hidden Soviet code regarding smuggled nuclear arms.

Told by Parcher to lead his normal life while carrying out his mission, John learns that part of his duties at Wheeler involve teaching. It's while doing just that that he meets Alicia Larde (JENNIFER CONNELLY), an opinionated and beautiful physics student. It's not long before the two become an item, much to the surprise of Charles who occasionally visits with his young niece, Marcee (VIVIEN CARDONE).

Yet, as time passes and John becomes increasingly paranoid due to his covert activities becoming more precarious, Alicia calls in Dr. Rosen (CHRISTOPHER PLUMMER) to assess his mental stability. From that point on, John and the others try to figure out if he's truly doing what he says or simply has been leading a delusional life.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Older teens may want to, as might anyone who's a fan of someone in the cast or of director Ron Howard's movies.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For intense thematic material, sexual content and a scene of violence.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • RUSSELL CROWE plays a brilliant but self-absorbed mathematician who doesn't have great social skills, but eventually romances and marries Alicia. He also either participates in covert government work or has delusions of doing so.
  • JENNIFER CONNELLY plays his former student and then lover and wife who becomes concerned about his growing paranoia and tries to do what's best for him.
  • ED HARRIS plays a shady government operative who hires Nash to break codes for him and the government. He then occasionally hounds John after that and uses some profanity.
  • CHRISTOPHER PLUMMER plays a mysterious doctor who believes John to be mentally ill.
  • PAUL BETTANY plays John's charismatic and outgoing roommate at Princeton.
  • ADAM GOLDBERG, ANTHONY RAPP and JOSH LUCAS play John's Princeton classmates and fellow geniuses, some of whom drink and/or smoke.
  • VIVIEN CARDONE plays Charles' niece whom he's now raising.
  • 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:
    Here's a brief summary of the content found in this drama that's been rated PG-13. Violence includes a brief shootout that results in at least one person being hit and an ensuing car crash, as well as some fighting and/or hitting of others. Some of those scenes and others - particularly in relation to a mentally ill person's delusions - may be unsettling and/or suspenseful to some viewers, and a few have bloody results.

    Profanity consists of at least 4 "s" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases are used. Some sexually related dialogue is present, while a wife briefly gropes her husband in bed under the sheets (nothing explicit is seen and he's unable to respond).

    Meanwhile, various characters drink and/or smoke, some have varying degrees of bad attitudes, and some tense family moments are present in the form of a strained marriage. If you're still concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to take a closer look at our content listings for more specific details regarding what's present in the film.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Charles states that he has a hangover (and equates it to dying of thirst).
  • Charles and Nash share a flask and drink many sips from it.
  • After Nash states that Charles has no respect for cognitive reverie, Charles states that he does have respect for pizza and especially beer. Nash then follows him out, also stating that he respects beer.
  • Various people, including Nash and other mathematicians, drink in a local pub.
  • Various students drink beer or liquor.
  • Nash and others celebrate with champagne.
  • John and Alicia have champagne and later have glasses of wine next to them on a picnic.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • John's forehead is a bit bloody from where he purposefully banged his head against a windowpane.
  • There's a little bit of blood on John's arm from where Parcher's men inserted something under the skin.
  • John's arm, hand and some of his clothing are bloody after he's torn his arm open looking for an implant he believes was placed in there.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Given that it's 1947 and right after WWII, but a person uses the term "Jap" to describe a Japanese person.
  • Various other mathematicians make fun of John's ways and behavior.
  • Various students make fun of John and the way he walks (with one mimicking him).
  • Parcher constantly harasses and badgers John.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Parcher picks up Nash at night, telling him to hurry since people are on to them. We then see a vehicle speed up behind them, with an occupant eventually opening fire on them, blowing out the back window of Parcher's car. After some more chasing, Parcher then fires through his back window at the pursuers, and then shoots out the side window when they pull up alongside the car. He hits at least one man, causing the pursuing car to go off the road and land in a body of water.
  • Various men chase and eventually surround Nash who then punches one of them in the face. He then tries to escape, but the others wrestle him to the ground and someone else sedates him.
  • John's arm, hand and some of his clothing are bloody after he's torn his arm open looking for an implant he believes was placed in there.
  • People inject a mental patient with something (at least insulin) via needles that then causes him to convulse and writhe about while strapped down (which is apparently expected since no one tries to stop that from happening).
  • John thinks he hears and sees people running around in the woods near his house and so runs after them, occasionally catching glimpses of them.
  • Alicia races back toward the house to save her baby (that we see in the bathtub with the water filling up around it) when she realizes things aren't right and knows her baby is in danger (she saves him just in time).
  • Parcher prepares to shoot Alicia (saying she's threatening their work), so John knocks him aside, but ends up knocking Alicia and their infant son back against a wall and to the floor.
  • A scene where a man sees many people telling him to take care of a woman could be unsettling to some viewers in its portrayal of maddening mental illness, as might another where a delusion-based character harasses a real person.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • We see some archival footage of a nuclear bomb exploding, along with test houses, etc. being blown away by the blast.
  • Handguns: Fired between Parcher and some pursuers in a brief gun battle (where Parcher apparently hits at least one of them).
  • Rifles: Aimed by some men at John.
  • Handgun: Aimed by Parcher at Alicia.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Bullsh*t," "You pathetic piece of sh*t," "Is my roommate a d*ck?" "What the hell is your problem?" "You can go to hell," "Bastards," "Nuts" (crazy) and "Screw everything up."
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A moderate amount of suspenseful and ominous music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 4 "s" words, 2 slang terms using male genitals ("d*ck" and "c*ck"), 1 slang term for sex ("get laid"), 3 hells, 1 ass (used with "hole"), 1 S.O.B., 3 uses each of "Jesus Christ" and "Oh God," 2 each of "G-damn" and "Oh my God" and 1 use each of "Christ," "God" and "Oh Christ" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Charles mentions that he arrived at Princeton just in time for a cocktail, and then adds that the c*ck was his and the tail belonged to a pretty young thing.
  • After other mathematicians try to set up John with a pretty, young woman, he goes over and sits next to her, but doesn't say anything. After she breaks the silence by saying he should buy her a drink, he replies that he doesn't know exactly what he's required to say to convince her to have intercourse with him. He then adds that they're just talking about fluid exchange and then wonders if they can just get to the sex (she smacks him in response and then leaves).
  • John tells the others that if they ignore the most beautiful woman among a group of other women, that's the only way they can win and "get laid."
  • While on a picnic, John states that he finds Alicia attractive and notes that her aggressive moves toward him mean the same. After stating that he knows protocol calls for them to continue their platonic ways, he states, "I want to have intercourse with you as soon as possible." He then asks if she's going to slap him, but instead she passionately kisses him. The scene ends and we don't know if anything else happens.
  • Alicia shows a bit of cleavage.
  • While in bed at night (and married), Alicia nuzzles John's neck for a moment and then runs her hand under the covers toward his crotch. He rolls over, however, leaving her frustrated. She then asks if it's the medication and he nods that it is (meaning it's impairing him sexually).
  • We briefly see some male infant nudity.
  • SMOKING
  • John and Sol each smoke more than 5 times, while Hansen smokes a few times, Parcher smokes once and various other characters also smoke.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Charles announces that a drunk driver killed his sister and so he's now taking care of her daughter.
  • John's actions and eventual breakdown put a progressive strain on his marriage to Alicia (although she eventually supports him).
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The real life story on which this film is based.
  • Schizophrenia and delusions.
  • What makes some people smarter than others.
  • Book smarts vs. street smarts/common sense.
  • VIOLENCE
  • A woman smacks John after he bluntly indicates he just wants to have sex with her.
  • John's forehead is a bit bloody from where he purposefully banged his head against a windowpane. Charles then tries to shake him out of his funk, eventually causing John to throw him to the floor. In response, Charles then takes John's desk, turns it up on its side, and then pushes it out the window (where it falls several stories to the ground below and splinters into various pieces upon impact).
  • Parcher picks up Nash at night, telling him to hurry since people are on to them. We then see a vehicle speed up behind them, with an occupant eventually opening fire on them, blowing out the back window of Parcher's car. After some more chasing and being shot at, Parcher then fires through his back window at the pursuers, and then shoots out the side window when they pull up alongside the car. He hits at least one man, causing the pursuing car to go off the road and land in a body of water.
  • Various men chase and eventually surround Nash who then punches one of them in the face. He then tries to escape, but the others wrestle him to the ground and someone else sedates him.
  • Alicia slaps Bender.
  • Alicia throws a drinking glass at a bathroom vanity in anger, breaking both.
  • Parcher prepares to shoot Alicia (saying she's threatening their work), so John knocks him aside, but ends up knocking Alicia and their infant son back against a wall and to the floor.



  • Reviewed November 29, 2001 / Posted December 21, 2001

    Other new and recent reviews include:

    [Darkest Hour] [Just Getting Started] [The Shape of Water]

    Privacy Statement and Terms of Use and Disclaimer
    By entering this site you acknowledge to having read and agreed to the above conditions.

    All Rights Reserved,
    ©1996-2017 Screen It, Inc.