Every Breath You Take parents guide

Every Breath You Take Parent Guide

There aren't any thrills in a film where the plot twist is obvious from the beginning.

Overall D

Digital on Demand: When one of his patients commits suicide, Phillip finds his life powerfully impacted. Things only get more complicated when he meets James, the brother of the deceased.

Release date April 2, 2021

Violence C-
Sexual Content D
Profanity D
Substance Use D

Why is Every Breath You Take rated R? The MPAA rated Every Breath You Take R for some violence and language, and brief sexuality.

Run Time: 105 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Psychiatry is a challenging medical specialty, with lots of judgment calls and plenty of room for error. For Dr. Phillip Clark (Casey Affleck), everything, including his professional life, has been more difficult since the death of his young son in a car accident. But things are finally looking up. Phillip is pleased that his young patient Daphne (Emily Alyn Lind), is progressing well…until she is unexpectedly found dead in front of her home. While he searches for answers, Phillip meets Daphne’s brother, James (Sam Claflin), an author with a surfeit of tragedy in his life. The bereaved young man soon befriends Phillip’s wife Grace (Michelle Monaghan) and daughter Lucy (India Eisley)…but Phillip is beginning to feel uneasy.

Thrillers are built on suspense, and they fall apart quickly without it. The problem with Every Breath You Take is that you can guess the big twist ending approximately three minutes in. Not only does knowing the ending make the rest of the story uninteresting, it leaves you free to notice just how many cliches this movie is using. Not a winning combination.

Family audiences will have their own issues with this movie. There’s some profanity, although considerably less than I expected, and some social drinking and off-screen violence. There are also several brutal assaults, brief depictions of domestic violence, references to suicide, a stabbing, a number of scenes which involve an adult kissing a teenager, and references to teenagers using cocaine. Most of the negative content isn’t explicit but the Restricted rating is still justified.

For my money, there are better thrillers out there – even ones for which I already know the ending. Someone needs to tell director Vaughn Stein that modern luxury home design is not a substitute for an actual plot. In fairness, Stein has spent almost his entire career directing second and third units, which usually include action scenes and pick-ups or establishing shots. While I can’t fault the technical production of the film, the story just doesn’t keep up, and the easy giveaways early in the film don’t help. This is a film about obsession; but it barely inspires interest, let alone fascination.

Directed by Vaughn Stein. Starring Casey Affleck, Michelle Monaghan, and Sam Claflin. Running time: 105 minutes. Theatrical release April 2, 2021. Updated

Watch the trailer for Every Breath You Take

Every Breath You Take
Rating & Content Info

Why is Every Breath You Take rated R? Every Breath You Take is rated R by the MPAA for some violence and language, and brief sexuality.

Violence: A child is killed off-screen in a car accident. There are frequent references to suicide, and a body is seen in a pool of blood following what appears to be a suicide. There are several brief physical altercations, including several depictions of domestic violence. An individual is killed when stabbed in the chest with a pair of scissors. One character is bitten. An individual is stabbed repeatedly in the back with an ice skate.
Sexual Content: There are several scenes depicting adultery, although no nudity or graphic sexual content is seen. A woman is shown from the shoulders up in a bath. A teenager is courted and kissed by a considerably older adult.
Profanity: There are seven uses of extreme profanity, five uses of scatological profanity, and occasional mild curses and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adults are seen drinking socially and are not seen intoxicated. There are references to teenage cocaine use. Teen characters are seen smoking cigarettes and drinking beer.

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Every Breath You Take Parents' Guide

Stalking and domestic violence are both crises which disproportionately affect women. Sometimes it can be difficult to recognize domestic violence or abusive patterns in a relationship. These articles offer insight into the problem.

Mayo Clinic: Domestic violence against women: Recognize patterns, seek help

Alberta Health: What family violence and domestic violence is

Healthline: How to Recognize the Signs of Mental and Emotional Abuse

If you or someone you love is suffering from domestic abuse, you can reach out to these organizations for assistance.

USA: National Domestic Violence Hotline

Canada: Ending Violence Association of Canada

United Kingdom: National Domestic Abuse Helpline

Australia: Respect.org

Home Video

Related home video titles:

Dangerous stalkers have a long history as movie villains. Examples include Cape Fear (The Robert DeNiro one, specifically), The Intruder, Greta, and Misery. A more family friendly example of literally the exact same premise is, believe it or not, the Bill Murray comedy What About Bob.