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"CATCH AND RELEASE"
(2007) (Jennifer Garner, Timothy Olyphant) (PG-13)

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


QUICK TAKE:
Dramedy: A woman slowly rediscovers herself following her fiancÚ's unexpected death right before their wedding.
PLOT:
It was supposed to be a happy time for Gray Wheeler (JENNIFER GARNER), but her life has been shattered following the unexpected death of her fiancÚ, Brady Douglas, right before their wedding. Now, she's spending time with his friends, herbal tea company employee Sam (KEVIN SMITH), fishing shop owner Dennis (SAM JAEGER), and L.A. film director Fritz (TIMOTHY OLYPHANT).

She isn't crazy about the latter (having accidentally witnessed him in a casual sex encounter at his late friend's wake), but spends time around him while going through Brady's things. It's then that she discovers that not only was her late boyfriend rich, but also had a secret cell phone upon which a woman has left repeated messages wanting her money from him.

Gray soon learns that's California masseuse Maureen (JULIETTE LEWIS) who's arrived in town with her 3-year-old son Mattie (JOSHUA FRIESEN), a boy she claims Brady fathered, an allegation that Fritz reluctantly confirms. As she deals with that as well as the callous reaction of Brady's mother, Ellen (FIONA SHAW), Gray unexpectedly ends up falling for Fritz. From that point on, she must decide how to handle all of these unexpected and shocking developments.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're fans of Garner, anyone else in the cast, or romantic comedies, they just might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For sexual content, language and some drug use.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • JENNIFER GARNER plays a young woman who must not only deal with her fiancÚ's death right before their wedding, but also the discovery that he cheated on her. She grieves, drinks to the point of passing out, and ends up falling for Fritz with whom she has sex, all while still being confused about herself and her situation.
  • TIMOTHY OLYPHANT plays the late groom's seemingly wild friend, a director from Hollywood who hangs out for a while, uses some profanity, has casual sex with a stranger at Brady's wake, and then ends up falling for Gray.
  • SAM JAEGER plays their other roommate and Brady's former business partner who holds a secret torch for Gray. He drinks some.
  • KEVIN SMITH plays the late groom's best friend and roommate who doesn't take his death well. He drinks a lot, uses profanity, and tries to commit suicide, but does befriend Maureen and her son.
  • JULIETTE LEWIS plays a masseuse and single mother who comes looking for her monthly child support payments from Brady, unaware that he's died or was engaged to Gray. She tries to get everyone healthy through "chi," and comes on sexually to Sam.
  • JOSHUA FRIESEN plays her young and wild son who's often misbehaving.
  • FIONA SHAW plays the late groom's mother who acts callously toward Gray following his death, but eventually turns into a nice person.
  • 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 look at the content found in this romantic dramedy that's been rated PG-13. Profanity consists of at least 2 abbreviated "f" words and 5 "s" words, while other expletives and many colorful phrases are also uttered. Sexually related dialogue is present, as are several sexual encounters (with movement and related sounds, but no outright explicit nudity), while a female to male massage briefly turns sexual.

    Various bad attitudes are present, as are thematic elements including grief over the death of a loved one (tense family material), infidelity, suicide, alcoholism and more. Various characters drink and one nearly smokes a joint, while other potentially imitative behavior is present. That includes a young boy jumping up and down on a freshly caught fish, while some slapstick style material is also present.

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, there's some handheld camerawork in the film.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • People drink at a wake, including a woman who asks for her scotch to be thinned out, while Sam drinks beer.
  • Fritz starts to light up a joint after a casual sexual encounter, but Gray surprises him.
  • Sam has a beer.
  • Sam has a beer in another scene.
  • Dennis tells Sam the latter is drinking too much, but Sam opens another beer and has more.
  • While making Gray a meal, Sam takes a swig from a vodka bottle and pours more into a blender for whatever he's mixing.
  • We see Gray drinking beer in a bar with a guy who downs a shot (others there drink). Fritz then shows up and escorts a very intoxicated Gray back home where she falls onto the bed and passes out.
  • Dennis finds Sam sluggish and we then learn the latter tried to commit suicide via sleeping pills and vodka (he's briefly hospitalized, but is okay).
  • The group and Maureen have wine with dinner.
  • Dennis asks his date what she wants to drink, offering beer or tap water, with her asking about wine. He then retrieves a bottle, but before he opens it, she leaves in a huff, upset about a note she just read.
  • Upset about his date having left and Gray liking Fritz, Dennis drinks wine by himself and then throws the wine bottle across the room, causing the bottle to shatter.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Although we don't see anything other than the man talking, Gray's coworker talks of a snowboarding accident where a jugular was accidentally cut and blood spread down the slope.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Although we don't see anything other than the man talking, Gray's coworker talks of a snowboarding accident where a jugular was accidentally cut and blood spread down the slope (a bad attitude since Gray's fiancÚ has just died on vacation).
  • Fritz tells Gray that her late fiancÚ hooked up with a woman, but that it was a one-time thing (he's lying about the latter to protect Gray, as he does about the boy's age to try to date the affair to before her). She then later learns that occurred while they were dating, that he may have fathered Mattie from that, and has secretly been sending child support money to her every month.
  • Ellen tells Gray that she wants the latter's engagement ring back (since it's a family heirloom and she didn't end up marrying Brady -- since he died right before their wedding).
  • When Ellen learns her son may have fathered Maureen's child, she incredulously asks Gray how she let this happen, adding that no satisfied man goes around "screwing" a cocktail waitress.
  • Young Mattie is quite disruptive, and pulls CDs from a holder, sending them to the floor even when told not to do that.
  • Feeling the need to confess various things, Gray states that she steals library books and is upset when natural disasters don't claim enough lives.
  • After Sam catches his first ever fish while fly-fishing, young Mattie jumps up and down on the fish repeatedly (we don't see the impact).
  • Dennis' date reads a note that Sam earlier wrote about her while taking a phone message from her. It states, "Not smart. Not funny. Maybe she'll blow you."
  • Fritz overhears Gray telling Dennis that her fling with Fritz is nothing and "less than nothing."
  • Maureen gives Sam a vigorous massage that turns sexual, and does so while her young son is in the same room (albeit transfixed by the TV). She then realizes she's being a bad mother.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Dennis finds Sam sluggish and we then learn the latter tried to commit suicide via sleeping pills and vodka (he's briefly hospitalized, but is okay).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "F-You" (said just like that), "She's F-ing P-O-ed" (said just like that), "Oh sh*t," "Sh*t-can," "I can bullsh*t till the cows come home," "This is not your sh*t, man," "That's just bullsh*t," "Nookie," "Pervy uncle," "Be nice to the strippers," "Sock it to me" (sexual), "You know what I need, so go ahead and give it to me" (double entendre), "It's a little Tracie Lords" (what Gray says about the ability to put her entire hand into her mouth), "Were you like the bitch or the butch?" (what Sam asks Gray about her confession of having "made it" with a girl once), "Maybe she'll blow you" (seen written), "Chick," "You're a blatant size-ist," "Shut up," "Fat ass," "Dude," "Ass-face," "Jackass," "Freak you out," "I'm a grown-ass woman," "You suck," "What the hell /are you doing/is this?" "Dumb ass," "It looks like a Tampax box" (said about blue-painted walls), "Let's get this bitch in the ground" (plant a tree), "How the hell did you let this happen?" "What the H-E-Double L is she talking about?" (said just like that), "Cerebral constipation," "Fancy-smancy," "Heartless weenies," "That's just crap," "You give good garden" and "You little tramp" (said jokingly).
  • Sam runs a blender without the top, creating a mess when he turns it on.
  • Dennis finds Sam sluggish and we then learn the latter tried to commit suicide via sleeping pills and vodka (he's briefly hospitalized, but is okay).
  • Young Mattie is quite disruptive, and pulls CDs from a holder, sending them to the floor even when told not to do that.
  • After Sam catches his first ever fish while fly-fishing, young Mattie jumps up and down on the fish repeatedly (we don't see the impact).
  • Gray tells Fritz (in bed) that the rule among her girlfriends in the past was not sleeping with a guy until you knew his mother's maiden name (to prevent casual encounters).
  • Maureen wears a midriff-revealing top.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • None.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • A song has a line about putting a cigarette out, and something about pills.
  • A song uses the term "G*ddamn."
  • A song heard during a sex scene has the lyric, "I'll lie with you."
  • PROFANITY
  • At least two abbreviated version of the "f" word, 5 "s" words, many slang terms for sex ("nookie," "hooked up," "screwing" and repeated uses of "sock it to me"), 4 asses, 3 hells, 2 damns, 1 crap, 11 uses of "Oh my God," 7 of "God," 4 of "Jesus," 3 of "Oh God" and 1 use each of "G-damn," "For God's sakes," "God," "Good God," "My God" and "Oh Lord."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • We hear voice-over narration from Gray to her dead fiancÚ at his wake (about last words that should have been spoken to him), including "no more nookie tonight" until he knows where to put something (the latter being nonsexual) and "be nice to the strippers." She also comments on his "pervy uncle" who has his hands on her (just her arms).
  • We see miscellaneous cleavage.
  • After Gray retreats to an empty bathtub to get away from her fiancÚ's wake (the shower curtain is closed), she hears a couple enter the bathroom. We then see Fritz and a stranger having sex standing and clothed (she on the sink or something similar and him between her legs). The view is from the torso up, but movement is seen and their sexual sounds are heard, including her repeatedly stating, "Sock it to me!" This is played for laughs, including when the woman gets a leg cramp and stretches it out into the bathtub area, unaware that Gray is there. They then quickly finish, she says thanks, he replies she's welcome, and that woman then leaves.
  • Sam comments on the "hours upon hours of sex" Gray would have had on her honeymoon.
  • Not knowing who she is, Gray calls Maureen's phone and hears her outgoing answering machine message, "You know what I need, so go ahead and give it to me" (a double entendre).
  • Fritz tells Gray that her late fiancÚ hooked up with a woman, but that it was a one-time thing (he's lying about the latter to protect Gray).
  • Learning Fritz lied to her about Maureen, Gray slaps him once and tries to do so again twice, but he catches her hands and pins them and her back to a wall. After a moment, she suddenly kisses him, and they then passionately make out before realizing what they're doing and then stop.
  • We see Maureen's business card for massages that includes the word "erotic" on it.
  • As Sam walks out of the room, he may make a comment about Dennis or his girlfriend being hornier than something (the dialogue was hard to hear/understand).
  • When Ellen learns her son may have fathered Maureen's child, she incredulously asks Gray how she let this happen, adding that no satisfied man goes around "screwing" a cocktail waitress.
  • Feeling the need to confess various things, Gray states that she can put her entire hand in her mouth, adding that the others don't want to see that as it's "a little Traci Lords" (referring to the porn actress). She also admits that she "made it" with a girl once, prompting Sam to ask if she was the "bitch or butch" with that.
  • Gray gets into bed with Fritz and they start making out, with him unbuttoning her pajama top and putting his hand on her chest (no view of her breasts). They then apparently have sex (some movement is seen, but not any nudity), but the view of any details is somewhat obscured by a close-up view of them being superimposed over a longer view (at night, in dimly lit environs). When they're done, Sam walks through the living room (where the encounter took place), but doesn't even see them (with Gray then sneaking out before Sam returns).
  • A song heard during the above sex scene has the lyric, "I'll lie with you."
  • After asking about Dennis' dating life, Gray jokingly asks if he's having an affair with a married woman (he says he isn't, but then jokes that he is).
  • We see Fritz roll off Gray in bed after they're finished having sex. Both are out of breath and we see his bare chest and her bare shoulders (the rest is under the sheets).
  • Dennis' date reads a note that Sam earlier wrote about her while taking a phone message from her. It states, "Not smart. Not funny. Maybe she'll blow you."
  • Maureen shows some cleavage.
  • Maureen gives Sam a hard massage on a bed with him lying facedown and clothed. It's played for laughs as she assumes many positions on top of him (including straddling him in that position). She then has him turn over and continues this activity, with her hand going down to his crotch (no impact is seen, but he reacts accordingly and a cartoon playing on the TV in the room simultaneously has a "boing" sound). Maureen then stops, however, realizing what a bad mother she is for doing that with her young son in the same room with them (albeit transfixed by the TV, although the film has him reacting to what's occurring on the TV as if also knowingly reacting to Maureen and Sam's dialogue).
  • Gray tells Fritz (in bed) that the rule among her girlfriends in the past was not sleeping with a guy until you knew his mother's maiden name (to prevent casual encounters).
  • Gray tries on her wedding dress that's rather low-cut in the front, thus showing a lot of the top of her chest.
  • About her affair with Brady, Maureen says they were sexual and then nine months later she had a baby.
  • About Gray going out to see Fritz in California, Sam jokingly calls her a "little tramp."
  • Gray shows some cleavage.
  • Gray and Fritz briefly but passionately kiss.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Gray grieves over her fiancÚ's death (right before their wedding), as does the young man's mother (the latter is more reserved and not seen as much as the former).
  • When she learns that Maureen's son was not fathered by her son, that causes Ellen some heartache (meaning no bloodline or grandson for her).
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Dealing with the death of a loved one.
  • Discovering unsavory or unexpected things about a loved one.
  • Drinking problems.
  • Casual sex.
  • Finding oneself.
  • Attempting suicide.
  • The concept and practice of "Chi" (what Maureen practices).
  • Paternity tests.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Gray is passed out from taking sleeping pills, so Dennis wants to carry her to a bed (non-sexually), but Sam doesn't want him to, so they struggle as Dennis carries her, resulting in both accidentally dropping her to the floor (played for laughs, she doesn't wake up).
  • After finding Sam sluggish from an attempted suicide, Dennis tries to help him along but ends up accidentally dropping Sam who then bangs hard into something before hitting the floor.
  • Learning Fritz lied to her about Maureen, Gray slaps him once and tries to do so again twice, but he catches her hands and pins them and her back to a wall. After a moment, she suddenly kisses him and they then passionately make out.
  • After Sam catches his first ever fish while fly-fishing, young Mattie jumps up and down on the fish repeatedly (we don't see the impact).
  • Upset about his date having left and Gray liking Fritz, Dennis drinks wine by himself and then throws the wine bottle across the room, causing the bottle to shatter.
  • Sam and Dennis struggle over a carpenter's wood planer (played for laughs, including Dennis tripping Sam by grabbing his foot).



  • Reviewed January 22, 2007 / Posted January 26, 2007

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