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"DIRTY DANCING: HAVANA NIGHTS"
(2004) (Romola Garai, Diego Luna) (PG-13)

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


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: An American high school senior learns about life, love and a new way of dancing when she moves to Cuba before the onset of Castro's military coup.
PLOT:
It's November 1958 and Katey Miller (ROMOLA GARAI) isn't particularly happy. That's because the high school senior has moved away from America and all of her friends to Havana, Cuba with her parents, Bert (JOHN SLATTERY) and Jeannie (SELA WARD), and younger sister, Susie (MIKA BOOREM).

Katey does meet other American kids her same age including James Phelps (JONATHAN JACKSON), whose father is boss to hers, and snobby Eve (JANUARY JONES), who looks down on the local help, including waiter Javier Suarez (DIEGO LUNA).

Katey apologizes to him about Eve's attitude and the two become fast friends, with him introducing her to the sensual style of Cuban dancing. His brother Carlos (RENÉ LAVAN), who's involved in the political unrest sweeping the country, isn't happy that Javier is seeing her.

Nor are the Americans, with Eve and Susie turning him in for seeing a guest and thus getting him fired. Feeling bad for what occurred, Katey then tries to convince him to join her in a Latin ballroom dance contest where the winners receive $5,000.

With the country in growing turmoil, Katey and Javier become more than just dance partners as they practice for the big competition and must deal with keeping their love secret from everyone else, including her parents.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
The title may draw those who are fans or are familiar with the original "Dirty Dancing" picture.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For sensuality.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • ROMOLA GARAI plays an American high school senior who isn't happy to have moved to Cuba, but finds solace in participating in a dancing contest with Javier with whom she falls and apparently has sex. She lies to her parents about that relationship and her activities.
  • DIEGO LUNA plays a waiter who gets fired for seeing Katey but then becomes her dance and romance partner. It's implied that he has sex with her and he's generally a happy guy despite what's occurring to and around him and his country.
  • SELA WARD plays Katey's racist and ice-queen style mother who eventually comes around to her daughter seeing a Cuban.
  • JOHN SLATTERY plays her husband who's concerned about Katey and smokes a bit.
  • JONATHAN JACKSON plays a rich American teen who drunkenly comes on to Katey and then helps in covering her lies to her parents (so that she doesn't turn him in for what he did).
  • JANUARY JONES plays a spoiled and racist American girl who doesn't approve of Katey seeing Javier.
  • MIKA BOOREM plays Katey's sister who falls in with the wrong crowd and briefly adopts their snobby and racist attitude.
  • RENÉ LAVAN plays Javier's activist brother who was planning to kill someone responsible for his father's earlier murder.
  • 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 drama that's been rated PG-13. Profanity consists of a handful of expletives, while some colorful phrases and non-explicit, sexually related dialogue are present. Several instances of sensual and steamy "dirty dancing" occur (with close bodies, grinding, some caressing, etc.) and some kids may want to imitate that. Various women show varying amounts of cleavage, while off-screen sex is implied.

    Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes (including some racist ones), several characters smoke or drink (with one young man being a bit intoxicated) and some tense family material is present. An assassination attempt is thwarted and some brief struggling and other contact occur.

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Miscellaneous men have beer.
  • Jeannie has a drink.
  • Miscellaneous people have drinks.
  • There's talk of an alcoholic drink.
  • Miscellaneous people have drinks.
  • James has a beer. After later getting sexually physical with Katey, he apologizes and says that he was drinking.
  • Miscellaneous people have drinks.
  • Miscellaneous people have drinks in another scene.
  • Miscellaneous people have drinks, while Bert has some champagne.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • None.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Eve refers to Javier as a "stupid spic."
  • A guy makes an unwelcome catcall whistle at Katey as she passes by and others get up to look at and/or follow her (she's okay).
  • Some other American girls have a bad attitude toward Katey.
  • James tries to kiss Katey, but she wants him to stop and tells him so. He continues, they briefly struggle, he partially tears her dress strap and she then slaps him before exiting his car. He later lies to her parents in exchange for her not reporting him.
  • Eve and Susie turn in Javier for fraternizing with a hotel guest (Katey) and he's fired as a result.
  • Referring to Javier, Susie tells Katey, "He's not like us" (in a racist fashion).
  • Jeannie is mad at Katey for lying to them about her activities and for being involved with Javier (she has a racist attitude, but later somewhat changes her tune).
  • Carlos prepares to assassinate someone responsible for or connected to his father's death (but is stopped).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • A person at a contest notices Carlos has a gun (that he was planning to use to kill someone), there's some resultant struggling and the gun goes off. Everyone panics and flees the area. Javier then finds a government man possibly preparing to shoot Carlos who's kneeling before him. Javier then grabs that man and he and Carlos drive him back against a wall before fleeing.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • We see guards holding rifles.
  • A person at a contest notices Carlos has a gun (that he was planning to use to kill someone), there's some resultant struggling and the gun goes off. Everyone panics and flees the area. Javier then finds a government man possibly preparing to shoot Carlos who's kneeling before him. Javier then grabs that man and he and Carlos drive him back against a wall before fleeing.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Screw up," "Kissing your asses," "Scary as hell," "You're damn straight," "Screwed it up" and "Go to hell."
  • The "dirty dancing" may be enticing for some kids to imitate.
  • A miscellaneous woman wears a midriff-revealing top.
  • We see some graffiti on the walls.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A little bit of suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 1 slang term for sex ("doing it"), 2 asses, 2 damns, 2 hells, 4 uses of "God," 3 of "Oh God" and 1 use each of "My God" and "Oh my God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • About a passage from a literary work, a female student in class jokes that it's about a "bunch of drunk guys doing it" (meaning sexual).
  • Katey and Jeannie show varying amounts of cleavage in various outfits during the film.
  • We see Katey in a full slip.
  • We see Katey in a very tight-fitting dress.
  • James and Katey do some slow dancing and he tells her that she feels really good.
  • Some "dirty dancing" occurs in a Cuban club where close contact dancing is seen (including caressing clothed bodies, a woman's leg up alongside a man's body, sweaty bodies, etc.) and the camera shows quick shots of various clothed body parts during that.
  • Miscellaneous women show cleavage in several scenes in the film.
  • James tries to kiss Katey, but she wants him to stop and tells him so. He continues, they briefly struggle, he partially tears her dress strap and she then slaps him before exiting his car.
  • Jeannie has a non-explicit and non-specific sex talk with Katey, saying that the teen might have feelings she's not used to having. She then talks about important related decisions to make (presumably about sex).
  • Javier has his hands on Katey's clothed hips as they dance (in a sensual manner). Later, there's more such sensual contact as they practice dancing and we see her shaking her clothed chest and him running his hand down her partially bare chest (no nudity, and at first she grabs his hand, but later lets him do this as part of their routine).
  • We see Katey in a sports bra-like top while practicing.
  • During their contest dance routine, Katey does some suggestive hip movement and is then bent over with Javier directly behind and up against her.
  • A classic statue shows bare breasts (briefly and non-explicitly).
  • Javier and Katey passionately kiss, there's some caressing and she unbuttons his shirt. The two then lean back in unison out of the shot (in silhouette) and it's implied that they have sex. We then see them lying next to each other, cuddling (and he's shirtless), with her saying that they might not have won the dance contest, but that the "consolation prize" (sex) was pretty good.
  • SMOKING
  • Bert smokes (or holds) cigars several times, while various minor and background characters smoke cigarettes and cigars in several scenes.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • There's brief talk of Javier's father being murdered by the government in the past. Later, there's more of that and Javier mentions that while they had a funeral, his body was never recovered.
  • Jeannie is mad at Katey for lying to them about her activities and for being involved with Javier. Jeannie then slaps Katey on the face following their argument.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The historical backdrop of the story (about Batista, Castro and Cuba at that time).
  • Racist attitudes toward others.
  • There's brief talk of Javier's father being murdered by the government in the past.
  • VIOLENCE
  • We briefly see some struggling on the street and some cops grab Javier (we later see him with a small bruise on his face).
  • James tries to kiss Katey, but she wants him to stop and tells him so. He continues, they briefly struggle, he partially tears her dress strap and she then slaps him before exiting his car.
  • During an argument about Javier, Jeannie slaps Katey on the face.
  • A person at a contest notices Carlos has a gun (that he was planning to use to kill someone), there's some resultant struggling and the gun goes off. Everyone panics and flees the area. Javier then finds a government man possibly preparing to shoot Carlos who's kneeling before him. Javier then grabs that man and he and Carlos drive him back against a wall before fleeing.
  • Mad at what he attempted to do, Javier pushes Carlos back against an exterior wall.



  • Reviewed February 13, 2004 / Posted February 27, 2004

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