The middle ground
The Great Gatsby (143 min., PG-13) Well, you likely know the story already. Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Daisy (Carey Mulligan) begin an affair, though nothing explicit is shown. Tom Buchanan (Joel Edgerton) spouts viciously racist views. He also has a mistress. A violent hit-and-run accident is replayed in slow motion.
Iron Man 3 (125 min., PG-13) Robert Downey Jr. is back as Tony Stark, everyone’s favorite playboy-superhero. Most of the mayhem, from explosions to fistfights, is thunderous and destructive, but not graphic. A group of people are sucked out of a damaged Air Force One and seem to be falling to their deaths. A key character plunges into a raging fire. There is very little profanity. Tony engages in lots of mildly naughty verbal sexual innuendo, and a flashback implies he spends the night with a fellow scientist.
Kon-Tiki (101 min., PG-13) Explorer Thor Heyerdahl sails on a raft from Peru to Polynesia. At various moments, the crew find themselves surrounded by hungry sharks, but no one in the crew is badly hurt. One man tries unsuccessfully to kill a huge shark or whale with a harpoon. Another shark dies, bloodily.
Mud (130 min., PG-13) Matthew McConaughey is a murderer on the lam hiding out on an island in the Mississippi. He’s befriended by two 14-year-old boys. The film’s climax features a lethal shoot-out, though none of the deaths is depicted graphically. A child sustains a life-threatening snakebite. The boys use the S-word a lot, and the script includes some crude sexual slang and references to “doin’ it.” An angry young woman complains about something — never described — a man wanted to do in the bedroom. Bruises on a woman’s face indicate she’s been abused by a boyfriend.
Peeples (95 min., PG-13) A young couple (Craig Robinson and Kerry Washington) go to meet her parents. The movie includes jokes about substance abuse and alcoholism, breast enlargement, nudism at the beach, gay adult children afraid to come out to their parents, and teenagers acting out against a privileged upbringing by stealing and pretending to be streetwise. The dialogue includes frequent sexual innuendo and mild sexual slang. There are suggestive dance moves, and a white character makes a stereotyped, mildly racist remark.
The Angels’ Share (101 min., unrated) This British comedy is far too profane and full of crude behavior for under-17s. The language is scathingly profane. Characters engage in crass and downright unhygienic behavior. The film includes a couple of quick but harsh fistfights. Some characters use drugs.
The Big Wedding (90 min., R) This matrimonial comedy contains too much bawdiness for most high school-age teens. The film includes brief female nudity, a few explicit sexual situations, strong profanity, and sexual slang.
Pain & Gain (120 min., R) Michael Bay tries his hand at comedy. The film features several scenes with strong and bloody violence, including implied torture, skulls cracked by metal weights, running someone over and setting him on fire. Even dead bodies have hands hacked off and burned in an attempt to destroy evidence. A couple of characters use cocaine. The film includes visually explicit and verbally crude sexuality, including one graphic sexual situation, and other sexually tinged scenes involving female toplessness and other near-nudity. The script brims with strong profanity.
The Reluctant Fundamentalist (130 min., R) Director Mira Nair looks at Muslim assimilation, in a film that’s part thriller, part character study. There are brief moments of violence, some of it lethal, but not excessively bloody. A photo shows a dead man whose throat has been cut. The scene with an airport strip-search is very uncomfortable. There are a couple of nonexplicit but steamy bedroom scenes. Some characters use strong profanity and smoke pot.