Emergency Parent Guide
There's an interesting story here that's swamped by an unbelievable amount of profanity.
Parent Movie Review
With the end of semester looming, roommates and friends Sean (RJ Cyler) and Kunle (Donald Elise Watkins) have very different concerns. Sean is fixated on being the first black student to complete The Legendary Tour – seven insane frat parties back to back before the break. Kunle, on the other hand, is more focused on babysitting the bacterial cultures he’s been developing for his thesis, hoping to maintain his grades to keep a spot at Princeton, but he’s agreed to go along with Sean to the parties. Their plans have to change when they return home to get ready and find a young, unconscious white girl (Maddie Nichols) in a puddle of vomit on the living room floor. Their other roommate, Carlos (Sebastian Chacon) doesn’t know anything about her either, despite having been home all day. Now, the obvious solution is to call 911 – but Sean has some concerns about the cops showing up at a house with two black men and a passed out white girl on the floor. So they load her into Sean’s van and head off for the hospital. Meanwhile, the girl’s sister, Maddie (Sabrina Carpenter) notices that she hasn’t seen her younger sister at the party for a while, and begins to wonder where she could be.
The film does start primarily as a comedy, but that really isn’t the main thrust of the story. Characters are pushed into increasingly unpleasant and dangerous situations, which not only allows the characters to grow and develop, but permits the filmmakers to explore deeper social issues. Concerns about police violence and race are obviously central to the plot, forcing the characters into even more difficult decisions. It is dramatic, thought provoking, and unbelievably tense. That’s all helped by excellent performances from the main cast, who give these complex characters a strong emotional foundation to build from, highlighting their struggles and growth.
That being said, Emergency is a tough sell as family entertainment. Good morals about caution and friendship and race are certainly an advantage, but that’s offset by nearly 200 f-bombs and frequent substance use throughout. In spite of that, older teens who can handle an insane amount of swearing might benefit from the film, both as a cautionary tale about college parties and as a learning opportunity about how people’s lived experience can differ even in the same country. This production might not make the cut for family viewing, but it has a lot to offer for a mature audience.Directed by Carey Williams. Starring RJ Cyler, Donald elise Watkins, Sebastian Charon. Running time: 105 minutes. Theatrical release May 27, 2022. Updated July 15, 2022
Watch the trailer for Emergency
Rating & Content Info
Why is Emergency rated R? Emergency is rated R by the MPAA for pervasive language, drug use, and some sexual references
Violence: People are kicked and struck across the face. Characters are held at gunpoint.
Sexual Content: There are some instances of crude sexual language and non-graphic references to sexual assault.
Profanity: There are 174 sexual expletives, 73 scatological terms, and infrequent use of mild curses and terms of deity. There are frequent uses of racial slurs.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Characters are frequently seen smoking weed, vaping, and drinking heavily.
Page last updated July 15, 2022
Emergency Parents' Guide
When they find the girl in their home, Sean doesn’t want to call the police. Why not? How have officers responded to people of color in the United States? Based on the rest of the film, did Sean make the right call? How did Kunle want to respond to the situation? What do you think the outcome would have been if they’d tried Kunle’s plans? Why does Maddie respond the way she does? How might she have prevented the situation?