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"YOU WILL MEET A TALL DARK STRANGER"
(2010) (Naomi Watts, Josh Brolin) (R)

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


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: A number of people must contend with various unfulfilled expectations and complications regarding the relationships in their lives.
PLOT:
Sally (NAOMI WATTS) and Roy (JOSH BROLIN) are a married couple who've put their lives, and starting a family, on hold as he tries to repeat his lone success at publishing a novel several years ago. The resultant strain -- as well as repeat and unannounced visits by her mother, Helena (GEMMA JONES), and her complete belief in psychic Cristal (PAULINE COLLINS) and her readings -- has led to straying eyes and hearts.

Roy has become fixated on a young woman, Dia (FREIDA PINTO), who lives in a flat across the street, while Sally has found herself enticed by her art gallery boss, Greg (ANTONIO BANDERAS). At the same time, Helena has become interested in occult bookstore owner Jonathan (ROGER ASHTON-GRIFFITHS), while Helena's ex-husband, Alfie (ANTHONY HOPKINS), has married Charmaine (LUCY PUNCH), a much younger woman who he met when she was working as a hooker.

As their various relationships play out, they must contend with unexpected developments and unfulfilled expectations.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
It doesn't seem too likely if they're not fans of Woody Allen films or anyone in this cast.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For some language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • NAOMI WATTS plays a wife who's put her life, and starting a family, on hold while waiting for Roy to try to replicate his lone success at being a published author. That condition, along with repeat visits by her mother, has put a strain on their marriage, resulting in her finding herself becoming attracted to her boss. She drinks and uses some profanity.
  • JOSH BROLIN plays her husband, a frustrated and likely one-hit author wonder who hasn't been able to get another work published. He hates Helena always stopping by, and becomes fixated on Dia, despite her being engaged to someone else. He drinks, uses profanity, and steals someone else's work and passes it off as his own.
  • GEMMA JONES plays Sally's mother who's latched onto a psychic and her readings, believing everything Cristal tells her. That includes her future after Alfie, who divorced her in hopes of a more youthful life. She drinks.
  • ANTHONY HOPKINS plays her ex-husband who left her for getting old and then blindly fell for and married Charmaine, a much younger hooker who serviced him. Initially happy, he soon realizes their lifestyles don't jive, and is then upset when she has an affair with someone else. He uses some strong profanity and drinks some.
  • LUCY PUNCH plays his wife and former hooker who feels bound down by him and thus has an affair. She drinks some and briefly uses strong profanity.
  • FREIDA PINTO plays the music student who lives across the street from Roy and becomes the object of his attention and affection, all of which eventually results in her leaving her fiancÚ.
  • ANTONIO BANDERAS plays Sally's boss who runs an art gallery, seems to show a liking to her, but ends up having an affair with her friend.
  • ROGER ASHTON-GRIFFITHS plays an occult book store owner who starts seeing Helena but is conflicted as he's still trying to contact his dead wife.
  • PAULINE COLLINS plays the psychic who does various readings for Helena.
  • 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 R-rated drama. Profanity consists of at least 4 "f" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases are also uttered. Sexually related dialogue is present, some fooling around is seen, off-screen sex occurs (including that involving a prostitute) and some women are seen scantily clad and/or in revealing attire.

    There's a brief fight with some shoving and (off-screen) punches, while there's talk of an unseen car accident that resulted in death and injury.

    Bad attitudes are present, as is tense family material and related thematic elements. Drinking occurs in various scenes (including suggested drunk driving), a minor character briefly smokes, and there's a drug-related comment. Other potentially imitative behavior is present.

    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.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, there's some camera movement, including some sweeping pans, as well as some handheld camerawork.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Helene asks for some sherry from Cristal. She asks if scotch is okay, Helena says that's even better, and then has a glass.
  • We see a flashback to Sally finding Helena after an overdose suicide attempt (using pills).
  • Roy has a beer.
  • Roy and Sally have beer in a park.
  • Roy and his friends drink while playing poker. Henry pours another drink, and Roy has another beer.
  • Roy has beer at home. Helena then stops by and has a drink.
  • Liquor bottles are seen in Alfie's place, and he has a drink with dinner.
  • People drink in a bar, and then in another.
  • Crystal pours a drink for Helena.
  • Helena asks, "Is there something I can sip on?" Roy replies, "You've sipped us dry" and then asks unless she wants cooking sherry. Sally then pours her a drink. Sally then says that her father is taking her, Roy and Alfie's new girlfriend out for drinks.
  • Roy and Sally have wine, as do others, at an outdoor concert. Alfie and Charmaine join them (he with champagne, she with wine).
  • Alfie and Charmaine have drinks in a flashback.
  • Roy and Dia have wine with lunch, while others drink and bottles are seen along the bar wall.
  • Sally's friend says that she's clean now and hasn't had a drink or taken drugs in a year.
  • Greg says he had too many Irish coffees and comments on the whiskey wearing off later (after dropping off Sally at her place, with related joking comments about him driving drunk).
  • A friend of Sally's says she was going to take her out for a drink.
  • Sally pours herself a drink, while Roy has a beer. Helena then shows up and asks if she can have some of the whiskey. Roy then finishes that beer and has another. Sally then drinks more. Roy grabs Helena's drink glass and throws it to the wall while angry at her.
  • Sally tells her mom, "You drink and chatter incessantly."
  • Roy gets a call about a car accident that killed several people (including his friend) and injured others due to some teenage drunks.
  • Roy has a drink.
  • People have drinks at a club, including Alfie and Charmaine.
  • Roy and Dia kiss, clothed. About their future, Roy tells Dia, "I write, we open wine bottles, we make love." They then kiss some more.
  • People have drinks in a casino, including Charmaine.
  • Jonathan mentions there being a nice pub around the corner.
  • Greg pours wine for Sally and himself.
  • Miscellaneous people have wine in a restaurant.
  • Some men drink beer in a bar, and Roy grabs one beer and drinks from it.
  • Helena has a drink, and Sally then pours herself one.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Alfie has a bit of bloody lip and a bruise on his eye after being beaten up.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Sally allows her mom to continue visiting Cristal for psychic readings despite knowing the latter is a fake (she does so thinking it works better than medicine for her depression).
  • Roy becomes fixated on Dia, always looking out the window in hopes of seeing her across the way in her building.
  • Helena and Roy bicker in several scenes.
  • Alfie states he got divorced because his wife allowed herself to get old.
  • Sally complains to Roy that Charmaine is a "cheap tart," and then questions her being an actress, saying the only acting she's done is faking an orgasm. Roy then says who can blame Alfie as Charmaine is a "hot little number." Sally then replies, "Yeah, I bet you'd love to make love to 'Chow-Mein.'"
  • Roy confesses to Dia that watching her slip out of a dress (from his window) was the most erotic 15 seconds he'd ever seen (he's married).
  • Greg says he had too many Irish coffees and comments on the whiskey wearing off later (after dropping off Sally at her place, with related joking comments about him driving drunk).
  • Roy ends up spending greater amounts of time with Dia.
  • Sally states that she's in love with her boss.
  • Men ogle Charmaine working out in a club (bent over a ball), commenting on her being "hot little wet dream," that whatever she costs is worth it, that with her body she's probably an acrobat, and that she probably knows a few tricks. One wonders if she plays around, and another jokes about pumping iron.
  • Sally's friend admits that she and Greg have been having an affair (and that he's a fabulous lover).
  • Roy tells Sally (about her mom), "Make her shut up -- I'm going to kill her."
  • Having learned of his new novelist friend's death, Roy decides to take his unpublished novel and submit it as his own. He then breaks the glass in a door to gain entry into his late friend's place and steal his unpublished book.
  • Roy lies to Dia's father about having traveled to Ireland (regarding the former's novel). Roy then lies to Dia about that.
  • A gym man massages Charmaine's leg (starting low, and going up to her thigh) while coming on to her, and talking about her past "work" (all veiled about her being a hooker, including it being "stimulating"). She then starts opening and closing her legs in her gym shorts.
  • Dia's family and her fiancÚ are upset that she's called off her wedding plans so close to the ceremony.
  • Sally tells Greg, "Maybe I should have told you I was ripe for an affair."
  • Alfie sees Charmaine (his wife) leaving a hotel in her old hooker garb. She then lies to Alfie about that.
  • Alfie returns home to hear sexual sounds and finds his gym instructor on top of Charmaine on a table (both dressed). Alfie then grabs the man and pushes him to a wall, but the younger man then pushes him away and repeatedly punches Alfie (off camera, but we hear the sound of the three punches). Alfie is later in pain, thinking he has a broken rib.
  • A medium fakes Jonathan contacting his dead wife, doing various knocks on a table to answer questions.
  • Charmaine states she's pregnant, with Alfie asking how he knows it's his. She then lies that the man she's been having an affair with forced himself on her. Alfie then asks how long she's been sleeping with him, and who else.
  • Sally is upset with her mom for changing her mind about loaning Sally money, based on what her psychic told her. She then tells her mom, "You idiot," "You poor pathetic, gullible imbecile," "You crazy imbecile" and "You lunatic."
  • The friend of a man in a coma lies about Roy having written a book about a child pornographer (to try to get the man to come out of the coma).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Alfie returns home to hear sexual sounds and finds his gym instructor on top of Charmaine on a table (both dressed). Alfie then grabs the man and pushes him to a wall, but the younger man then pushes him away and repeatedly punches Alfie (off camera, but we hear the sound of the three punches). Alfie is later in pain, thinking he has a broken rib.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "He treats me like a f*cking secretary," "I was so f*cking scared of being alone," "Screw" (sexual), "Hot little number," "Cheap tart," "Hot little wet dream," "Jeez," "Bloody," "I've had it with that G*ddamn job," "Knock-out" (woman), "I have a tough time with mumbo-jumbo," "Chow-Mein," "What the hell / do you think about/do you think I'm trying to do here/is that supposed to mean?" "I know you're going to pooh-pooh this," "Are you thick?" "Can you get the hell out?" "What the hell chance did he have?" "A hell of a name," "Freaking," "What the hell are we talking about here?" "I screwed up," "What the hell is going on here?" "You idiot," "You poor pathetic, gullible imbecile," "You crazy imbecile" "You lunatic," "A blatant, conniving, little fraud," "You idiot," "You poor pathetic, gullible imbecile," "You crazy imbecile" and "You lunatic."
  • We see a flashback to Sally finding Helena after an overdose suicide attempt (using pills).
  • Roy and Sally have beer in a park.
  • We see miscellaneous graffiti.
  • Greg says he had too many Irish coffees and comments on the whiskey wearing off later (after dropping off Sally at her place, with related joking comments about him driving drunk).
  • Men ogle Charmaine working out in a club (bent over a ball), commenting on her being a "hot little wet dream," that whatever she costs is worth it, that with her body she's probably an acrobat, and that she probably knows a few tricks. One wonders if she plays around, and another jokes about pumping iron.
  • Roy grabs Helena's drink glass and throws it to the wall while angry at her.
  • A medium fakes Jonathan contacting his dead wife, doing various knocks on a table to answer questions.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • None.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 4 "f" words, 2 slang terms for sex ("screw" and "do it"), 9 hells, 1 ass, 1 crap, 4 uses of "Oh God," 3 of "G-damn," 2 each of "God" and "Jesus Christ" and 1 use each of "Christ," "For Christ's sakes," "Jesus," "Oh for God's sakes" and "Oh Christ."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • We see Alfie shirtless after coming out of a tanning booth.
  • We see a flashback to Roy and Sally in their earlier time together, with some brief kisses and him playfully reciting various things, including that something "so much depends on...Sally's ass."
  • Sally shows a little cleavage.
  • Dia shows some cleavage from a distance.
  • Roy sees Dia across the way with a man in her flat. They embrace, kiss and her top comes off (bra seen), but she then closes the window treatment.
  • Artwork on Sally's wall shows a painting of a nude woman, seated, with the view from behind (top of bare butt).
  • Helena tells Sally that Crystal told her that Sally can conceive.
  • Charmaine wears a very short dress (that shows cleavage) and jokes about not flashing everyone as she sits.
  • We see Charmaine in another tight, short and cleavage-revealing dress in a flashback when she and Alfie meet (for sex). Alfie asks about how it works and if it's hygienic, saying he knows of someone who got herpes. She states the charge is 350 pounds, and she asks, "Should we get on with it?" We then see them after sex, with her finishing getting dressed (and showing lots of cleavage, especially when bent over), while he's shirtless in bed (his lower half under the covers). She states that she finds older guys sexy. He asks if she had a good time and she replies, "You heard me screaming." The narrator then says "one tumble with this pro" and Alfie was in love, and that he bought all of her time. He then adds that "every time she screws him he falls deeper and deeper for the little mechanic." We then see her in another outfit that shows cleavage.
  • Sally complains to Roy that Charmaine is a "cheap tart," and then questions her being an actress, saying the only acting she's done is faking an orgasm. Roy then says who can blame Alfie as Charmaine is a "hot little number." Sally then replies, "Yeah, I bet you'd love to make love to 'Chow-Mein.'" Sally then complains that Alfie couldn't keep his hands off Charmaine, with Roy saying that maybe Charmaine will give Alfie the son he always wanted. Roy then starts nuzzling on Sally's neck, but she says she doesn't want to keep doing this if they have to keep using contraception. That ruins his mood and he stops.
  • Roy confesses to Dia that watching her slip out of a dress (from his window) was the most erotic 15 seconds he'd ever seen, and that the man with her (her fiancÚ) is the luckiest guy.
  • Roy jokingly tells Dia to promise not to pull down her window shades when she undresses. She then playfully tells him to look out his window at midnight.
  • Sally shows a little cleavage.
  • We see Alfie taking Viagra and then Charmaine in some sexy lingerie (that shows cleavage), with him joking it's too bad they don't have a bed in their new place. She says they should just "do it" on the floor, and then pulls out a mink coat that she places on that. He then says he needs just a few minutes (for the Viagra to kick in).
  • Men ogle Charmaine working out in a club (bent over a ball), commenting on her being a "hot little wet dream," that whatever she costs is worth it, that with her body she's probably an acrobat, and that she probably knows a few tricks. One wonders if she plays around, and another jokes about pumping iron.
  • Sally's friend admits that she and Greg have been having an affair (and that he's a fabulous lover).
  • We see Roy with his shirt open while he reads.
  • Charmaine sits in small boxer shorts with her legs spread.
  • Charmaine does some sexy dancing with a guy at a club.
  • Roy and Dia kiss, clothed. About their future, Roy tells Dia, "I write, we open wine bottles, we make love." They then kiss some more.
  • We see Charmaine in small/tight shorts and a top that shows cleavage.
  • A gym man massages Charmaine's leg (starting low, and going up to her thigh) while coming on to her, and talking about her past "work" (all veiled about her being a hooker, including it being "stimulating"). She then starts opening and closing her legs in her gym shorts.
  • Sally tells Greg, "Maybe I should have told you I was ripe for an affair."
  • Alfie sees Charmaine leaving a hotel in her old hooker garb. She then lies to Alfie about that.
  • From Dia's place, Roy sees Sally undress down to her bra and panties (seen from a distance).
  • Alfie returns home to hear sexual sounds and finds his gym instructor on top of Charmaine on a table (both dressed).
  • Charmaine states she's pregnant, with Alfie asking how he knows it's his. She then lies that the man she's been having an affair with forced himself on her. Alfie then asks how long she's been sleeping with him, and who else.
  • Helena shows some cleavage.
  • The friend of a man in a coma lies about Roy having written a book about a child pornographer (to try to get the man to come out of the coma).
  • Jonathan and Helena briefly kiss.
  • SMOKING
  • Sally's friend smokes in one scene.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • We hear that Helena tried killing herself when her husband walked out on her after 40 years of marriage.
  • We see a flashback to Sally finding Helena after an overdose suicide attempt (using pills).
  • We hear that Sally put her dreams on hold so that Roy could continue to pursue his.
  • Roy is not happy with Helena, her constant stopping by unannounced, and her vocal belief in Cristal's psychic readings.
  • Helena is upset to learn that Alfie is to marry Charmaine, an actress half his age.
  • Helena and Roy bicker in several scenes.
  • Alfie states he got divorced because his wife allowed herself to get old.
  • We hear that Jonathan's wife died recently, and that he has been trying to contact her (he runs an occult book shop).
  • Sally snaps at Roy (but due to her disappointment that her boss is having an affair with her friend and not her). They then argue about who financially supports their lives.
  • Roy tells Sally (about her mom), "Make her shut up -- I'm going to kill her."
  • Sally tells her mom, "You drink and chatter incessantly."
  • The narrator states that Sally told Roy the time is ready for a divorce.
  • Dia's family and her fiancÚ are upset that she's called off her wedding plans so close to the ceremony.
  • Greg states he and his wife are splitting.
  • Alfie states he lost his son (presumably sometime in the past, but isn't more specific than that).
  • Sally is upset with her mom for changing her mind about loaning Sally money, based on what her psychic told her. She then tells her mom, "You idiot," "You poor pathetic, gullible imbecile," "You crazy imbecile" and "You lunatic."
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • We hear that Helena tried killing herself when her husband walked out on her after 40 years of marriage.
  • The fact that Sally put her dreams on hold so that Roy could continue to pursue his.
  • Roy worrying about additional failure as a writer, thus resulting in his confidence being gone.
  • Sally allows her mom to continue visiting Cristal for psychic readings despite knowing the latter is a fake (she does so thinking it works better than medicine for her depression).
  • Alfie discovering that the single life is not what he thought it would be.
  • Roy becomes fixated on Dia, always looking out the window in hopes of seeing her across the way in her building.
  • Alfie states he got divorced because his wife allowed herself to get old.
  • We hear that Jonathan's wife died recently, and that he has been trying to contact her (he runs an occult book shop).
  • Sally's female friend comments on having spent the past six years with a wife who's bipolar.
  • Talk of reincarnation.
  • The comment that sometimes the illusions work better than the medicine (in terms of getting through life).
  • VIOLENCE
  • From a dash or hood camera, we see Roy hit by an airbag when he gets into an accident working as a chauffeur.
  • Roy grabs Helena's drink glass and throws it to the wall while angry at her.
  • Roy gets a call about a car accident that killed several people (including his friend) and injured others due to some teenage drunks.
  • Roy breaks the glass in a door to gain entry into his late friend's place and steal his unpublished book.
  • Alfie returns home to hear sexual sounds and finds his gym instructor on top of Charmaine on a table (both dressed). Alfie then grabs the man and pushes him to a wall, but the younger man then pushes him away and repeatedly punches Alfie (off camera, but we hear the sound of the three punches). Alfie is later in pain, thinking he has a broken rib.



  • Reviewed October 26, 2010 / Posted October 29, 2010

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