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"BANDITS"
(2001) (Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton) (PG-13)

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


QUICK TAKE:
Comedy: Despite becoming increasingly popular with the public, a disparate group of robbers attempt to knock off enough banks so that they can retire and pursue their dreams.
PLOT:
Joe Blake (BRUCE WILLIS) and Terry Collins (BILLY BOB THORNTON) are partners in crime who've just broken out of Oregon State Prison. Quickly returning to their bank robbing ways, the two enlist the aid of Harvey Pollard (TROY GARITY), Joe's cousin and stuntman wannabe, as their driver and lookout man.

Joe wishes to make enough money so that he can retire south of the border and open a casino. That sounds good to Terry, the cautious hypochondriac, but he suggests a lower profile way of knocking off the banks, namely kidnapping and spending the evening with the bank manager and his or her family the night before the robbery and then calmly going in the next morning before anyone's there and taking the money.

The ploy works, but things become more complicated when Kate Wheeler (CATE BLANCHETT), a disillusioned and some eccentric homemaker, suddenly pops into their lives. Although Terry isn't happy with her joining their team - despite being the one responsible for her meeting them - Joe's immediately smitten and the two become an item.

As the quartet of robbers leave a trail of knocked off banks from Oregon to California, they gain fame as the "Sleepover Bandits," especially after being featured on the TV show "Criminals at Large" hosted by Darren Head (BOBBY SLAYTON).

When Terry eventually becomes involved with Kate during one of their many two-week layovers between jobs, however, and their identities become known to everyone, the camaraderie of the team is threatened, ultimately leading to one last heist they hope will provide the big payoff they need.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of someone in the cast, director Barry Levinson, or action-based comedies, they just might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For some sexual content, language and violence.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • BRUCE WILLIS plays a bank robber who can easily switch from charming to threatening, although he's far more of the former. He quickly falls for and beds Kate, argues with Terry about her, and uses some profanity.
  • BILLY BOB THORNTON plays his partner in crime, a cautious hypochondriac who's constantly fearful about being sick. He also uses some profanity, and gets involved with and sleeps with Kate despite knowing she's seeing Joe.
  • CATE BLANCHETT plays a quirky and somewhat despondent woman who joins the bank robbers and ends up sleeping with both of them despite being married. She also drinks some.
  • TROY GARITY plays Joe's cousin and stuntman wannabe who participates in the robberies by serving as the driver/lookout.
  • BOBBY SLAYTON plays a TV crime show host who interviews the two robbers.
  • 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 brief summary of the content found in this PG-13 rated comedy. Being a story about bank robbers, there's some gun use in both holding up the banks and taking a few hostages (although it's mostly all done in a good-natured and not terribly threatening manner), as well as a bloody shootout that turns out to have been faked. A few moments of characters striking others are also present.

    A few of those scenes and some others may be a bit suspenseful to some viewers, while the perpetrators obviously have some bad attitudes. Profanity consists of at least 7 uses of the "s" word, while other expletives and colorful phrases are also used.

    Some brief, non-explicit, sexually related dialogue is uttered, while a woman separately sleeps with two friends (all we see is some kissing and the fact that she's pregnant from one of them at the end). A young couple is also seen fooling around and must put on or zip up their pants after being interrupted, but nothing graphic or explicit is seen.

    Meanwhile, various characters drink beer and liquor, while some imitative behavior is present. If you're still concerned about the film's appropriateness for anyone in your home, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed content listings for more specific examples of what's present and/or occurs in the film.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Joe states that his dream is to open a casino hotel in Mexico and serve the tourists margaritas.
  • Harvey asks Joe if he wants a beer (he says he does), but we don't see them with them.
  • Kate has some wine.
  • Joe, Terry and Harvey have beer and later they and Kate have wine in front of them with dinner (with Joe still having a beer as well).
  • Joe recounts some time he and others were drinking large steins of beer.
  • Joe has a beer in front of him, while Kate drinks something that may (or may not) be alcoholic.
  • Kate says she needs some whiskey and then asks for some vodka in a bar (and downs one shot and then another).
  • Kate and others have drinks in a bar.
  • The team celebrates another heist with beer.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Terry listens to a medical advice tape in the car and it discusses vaginitis having abnormal vaginal discharges. Later, Terry repeats this as a condition a woman has to the man who's interested in her (to make the man leave).
  • We see what looks like blood squirting out and then being on some people as they're shot (but we later learn it's not real).
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Joe, Terry, Cate and Harvey are bank robbers (or associates thereof), with the former two usually acting in gentlemanly ways while doing so, although they do aim some guns at others.
  • Joe rushes up, slams a cement truck's discharge chute into a worker's face so that he can steal his truck. He and Terry then escape from prison. They then "borrow" some woman's car, but don't threaten her while doing so, but Joe does knee another man in the gut to steal his car.
  • Kate's husband doesn't appreciate the meal she's made for them and says he has a business dinner anyway.
  • Terry starts seeing and then sleeping with Kate despite her already seeing Joe (and her still being married to another man - thus she's committing adultery).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" may also be unsettling or suspenseful to some viewers, but most of them are not played for that reaction.
  • Joe finds a teenager getting a shotgun to use on him. He then tells the boy to aim it at him. The boy does, but nothing happens (due to no shell in the chamber). Joe then knocks the gun from the boy's hands, grabs it and aims it at him (but nothing else happens).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns/Shotguns/Rifles: Carried and/or fired upon others. See "Violence" for details.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "I don't make this sh*t up," "(I) Don't give a sh*t," "Boned me" (nonsexual), "The hell I don't," "What the hell /is this/did you bring her here for/is that supposed to mean/was that?" "Sucks," "Chick" (woman), "Pain in the ass," "Hot damn," "I don't give a damn," "Shut up," "Nuts" (crazy) and "Bastard."
  • It's possible some kids could get the idea to rob banks since the guys here make it look like fun and become something of cult heroes.
  • Joe holds the end of a magic marker to a bank guard's neck, making him think it's a gun.
  • A young girl lets out a long and loud belch.
  • Kate drives like a wild person down the road (on the wrong side, speeding, going through a red light, etc.), while Harvey drives down the wrong side of a highway next to Joe and Terry in a separate scene.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A tiny bit of suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 7 "s" words, 8 hells, 4 asses (1 used with "hole"), 4 damns, 1 crap, 8 uses of "Oh my God," 5 of "G-damn," 4 of "God," 3 of "For God's sakes," 2 of "Jesus" and 1 use each of "Jesus Christ," "Oh God" and "For the love of God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Joe and Terry let themselves into a house where they find a boy and girl making out/fooling around on the sofa (with the guy on top of her). As he scrambles off her, we see him in his boxers and Joe tells the girl to zip up her pants, which she then does.
  • Later, that boy asks the girl where something is and she replies that it's below her belt but above her knees. He's referring, however, to her father's shotgun.
  • Joe and Kate passionately kiss on a bed (after the hanging sheet separating them falls to the bed) and we see part of her bare butt as her nightgown rides up as they squirm around.
  • When Terry asks Joe if it's worth the risk having Kate around, Joe replies that she has saliva. Terry says that everyone has it, but Joe replies that she has more (possible sexual connotation).
  • Kate shows some cleavage.
  • It's implied that Kate and Terry have sex, and then later confirmed verbally when she mentions sleeping with Joe and then with Terry. Later, in the end credits, we see that Kate is pregnant from one of those encounters.
  • SMOKING
  • A miscellaneous man smokes in one scene.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Kate and her husband are having marital difficulties and she storms out.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • How the robbers make robbing banks look fun and funny, when it's usually neither.
  • Kate's inability to choose between Joe and Terry, and her desire to continue seeing both of them.
  • Joe's statement that they never steal money from people who earned it, that it's all federally insured and that the feds steal money from the people, so they steal it back.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Not everything that's seen turns out to be real - including a seemingly bloody shootout - so the rating reflects that (since it appears real at first).
  • Joe fires a shotgun into a bank ceiling as a warning to get others' attention.
  • There's some typical boxing violence in the ring, with Joe eventually pummeling his opponent for taking a cheap shot. He then grabs him around the neck until Terry repeatedly yells "Anger management" to him.
  • Joe rushes up, slams a cement truck's discharge chute into a worker's face so that he can steal his truck. Prison guards then open fire on the truck as he and Terry escape in it, riddling the vehicle with bullets as it drives through fences and a pickup truck in its way.
  • We then see them driving through various backyard fences and playhouses (no one is hurt) as they make their getaway.
  • Joe knees a man in the gut to steal his car. That man then shoots at them and blows out the car's back window as they drive off.
  • Joe finds a teenager getting a shotgun to use on him. He then tells the boy to aim it at him. The boy does, but nothing happens (due to no shell in the chamber). Joe then knocks the gun from the boy's hands, grabs it and aims it at him (but nothing else happens).
  • Joe holds his gun on a bank manager as he takes him hostage (but it isn't much more menacing than that brief pointing of the gun as he and Terry then have dinner - sans the guns - with the man's family).
  • Kate violently knocks a lamp from a table while mad at her husband.
  • Kate accidentally drives her car into Terry who's standing in the middle of the road (he's only slightly dazed) and then opens her door, accidentally hitting him on the head. He then pulls a gun on her to take her car (but she doesn't give it up).
  • Harvey runs by with his arms on fire (from a stunt gone bad that we don't see).
  • After Harvey drives down the wrong side of a highway next to Joe and Terry, an approaching truck smashes into the back of Joe and Terry's car, knocking it off the road (with both being a bit dazed from the collision and the back end of the car is crumpled).
  • After trying to stop Terry's sneezing fit by scaring him and putting a pillow over his face, Kate slaps him.
  • Fighting over Kate, Terry tries to punch Joe, but misses and both of them crash through a glass window and to the ground below. They then struggle with Terry biting Joe on the arm.
  • Joe violently throws a phone against a wall.
  • Two men aim their guns at each other, eventually firing various shots that hit and seemingly injure/kill the other (but we later learn it's all faked).
  • Harvey pushes a button that makes a vehicle roll over and then explode (but no one is hurt).



  • Reviewed October 4, 2001 / Posted October 12, 2001

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