Kin Parent Guide
Your kin should be your safe place. Kin just takes your time and money and gives only violence and terrible messages in return.
Parent Movie Review
It can be inexpressibly painful to watch the innocent suffer for someone else’s bad choices. That makes Kin, a new release from Lionsgate, 102 minutes of suffering for the audience.
The innocent characters in Kin are Eli Solinski (Myles Truitt), a 14-year-old African-American and his adoptive white father, Hal (Dennis Quaid). The pair live in an unnamed Rust Belt city where Hal works in construction and tries to instill his personal ethic of hard work and honesty in his son. Meanwhile, Eli searches dilapidated buildings looking for copper wire to strip and sell. On one of his scavenging trips, Eli finds an alien weapon, which he hides under his bed.
To increase the trouble quotient, Eli’s older brother, Jimmy (Jack Reynor), returns home after six years in prison. Jimmy has some significant baggage: in return for protection in prison, he accrued a $60,000 debt. And the criminals who provided the protection now want payment in full or they will kill both Hal and Eli. With his back against the wall, Jimmy agrees to help Taylor (James Franco) and his thugs rob the safe in Hal’s office. Tragically, Hal walks in at the wrong moment. In the shootout, Hal winds up dead, Taylor’s brother is dead, and Jimmy is on the run.
To get his brother away from Taylor and his confederates, Jimmy takes Eli on a road trip to California. Not surprisingly, Jimmy is a terrible substitute parent. The older brother drinks to handle stress and even brings Eli to a strip club and bar. Drinking, gambling, and armed robbery round out Jimmy’s smorgasbord of inappropriate activities. To make things worse, the brothers are being hunted: Taylor’s crime syndicate is out for vengeance, law enforcement believes the brothers are the chief suspects in their father’s death, and two alien soldiers are seeking the missing weapon. There is clearly not going to be a non-violent conclusion to this story. (Although there is a plot twist at the end which holds out the horrifying possibility of a sequel.)
No one will be surprised that violence is the biggest content issue in this movie. There are constant fist fights and gun battles. Multiple characters die: some murdered and some shot in self-defense. One of the most upsetting parts of this film is when Eli grabs his weapon and kills men who are trying to shoot his brother. Any movie that turns a 14-year-old into a killer, for any reason, raises red flags for parents. Sexual issues are also problematic, particularly having an underage teen in a strip club with scantily clad women and lots of alcohol. (The teen has soft drinks.)
In this sea of violence, selfishness, and irresponsibility, it is difficult to come up with any positive aspects to this film. The brothers are loyal to each other, and loyalty is usually considered a virtue. But here, Eli’s loyalty is tragically misplaced. Instead of finding security in his family ties, Eli’s only kin robs him of his father, his home, and his innocence. Don’t let Kin rob you of 102 minutes of your life.Directed by Jonathan Baker, Josh Baker. Starring James Franco, Jack Reynor, Myles Truitt. Running time: 102 minutes. Theatrical release August 31, 2018. Updated September 18, 2018
Rating & Content Info
Why is Kin rated PG-13? Kin is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for gun violence and intense action, suggestive material, language, thematic elements and drinking
Violence: There are several fist fights where characters are kicked and punched. There are also many gun fights where characters die, although no blood is shown. Major characters commit an armed robbery. A character threatens to cut off another person’s nose. A character threatens to kill someone’s family members. When he is not allowed to use a gas station washroom, a criminal character places his gun on the check out counter and urinates on the floor while the frightened attendant turns his back. A group of criminals shoot their way into a prison and kill or injure multiple police officers. The protagonist shoots and kills several men to protect his brother. Alien soldiers are repeatedly shot at by the FBI but are not harmed.
Sexual Content: A major character takes his underage brother to a strip club. Women are seen in revealing clothing, dancing suggestively and removing some of their clothes. Private body parts remain covered but nothing else does.
Profanity: There are over two dozen uses of profanity, including multiple scatological terms, repeated mild curses, several terms of Deity, and one sexual expletive. A major character makes a sexual hand gesture at himself in a mirror.
Alcohol / Drug Use: A main character repeatedly uses alcohol and sometimes gets drunk to make himself forget what he has done.
Page last updated September 18, 2018
Kin Parents' Guide
Eli will do anything to protect Jimmy, even though Jimmy’s problems are of his own making. Do you think Eli made the right choice? What could he have done instead? Is there a difference between helping someone get out of a bad situation and enabling their unhealthy or destructive behaviors?
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