The Informer parents guide

The Informer Parent Guide

Not as bad as I feared - which isn't saying a lot.

Overall C

Digital on Demand: Pete Koslow thought life would get easier after being discharged from Special Ops. But after he gets arrested and sent to jail, and the FBI offers to get him out sooner if he leaks them information from the inside, his life only gets more complicated.

Release date July 31, 2020

Violence D
Sexual Content B-
Profanity D
Substance Use B

Why is The Informer rated R? The MPAA rated The Informer R for strong violence and pervasive language

Run Time: 113 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Piotr “Pete” Koslow (Joel Kinnaman) had a respectable career with US Special Forces, serving in the Gulf War and again in Iraq. After giving up his life as a soldier to take care of his wife, Sofia (Ana de Armas) and daughter Anna (Karma Meyer), Pete thought his life would calm down. But a barfight gone wrong sees him indicted for manslaughter, and life in prison forces him into contact with two dangerous groups - a powerful Polish gang and the FBI. Seeing the opportunity Pete represents, FBI Agent Erica Wilcox (Rosamund Pike) quickly recruits him as an informant and assigns him to help her bring down “The General” (Eugene Lipinski), the man who runs the gang. Things get more complicated when, in the course of that operation, an undercover NYPD officer is killed. Now the FBI are trying to cover up their op, and an NYPD officer, Detective Grens (Common) is digging around in what’s left behind…leaving Pete and his family in the firing line.

R-rated films are seldom suitable for family audiences, and this is no exception. The content is mostly limited to violence and profanity, but “limited” is a relative term. There were 80 sexual expletives in the first half hour, which is a lot by any measure, although they do slow down after that. The violence is also surprisingly tame for a crime thriller like this but still not entirely pleasant – unless you define a man having a large shank slowly inserted into his ear as “pleasant”. (In which case, please stay far away from me.) There is also frequent mention of drugs, namely fentanyl, but no one is ever shown taking said drugs. The most graphic it gets are some suggestively plastic-wrapped packages being shuttled around.

But for what it is, The Informer is actually surprisingly watchable. I was dreading this one, but it did turn out to be half decent. It feels kind of like the finale for a big-budget TV drama, which is both a good thing and a bad thing. It’s good because the story isn’t rushing around or trying to give you a ton of unnecessary backstory. It keeps the pacing up, which can be a challenge in movies like this. The downside is that the characters don’t necessarily get as much development as I’d like, and they end up feeling…not quite two-dimensional but somewhat vague and mysterious.

It’s certainly not flawless, but The Informer isn’t nearly as bad as I feared from the trailer. It’s not family viewing by any stretch, but adult audiences might find the twists and turns of the investigation interesting, which is more than I can say for plenty of other films in the genre. The dialogue may be a little profane, but I don’t think I can call it unrealistic – criminals are not famed for their dainty vocabularies.

Directed by Andrea Di Stefano. Starring Ana de Armas, Rosamund Pike, and Joel Kinnaman. Running time: 113 minutes. Theatrical release July 31, 2020. Updated

Watch the trailer for The Informer

The Informer
Rating & Content Info

Why is The Informer rated R? The Informer is rated R by the MPAA for strong violence and pervasive language

Violence: A number of people are shot, some of them fatally. A man is shown cutting the tongue out of a corpse. Several characters are stabbed with improvised weapons, including a person who is stabbed through the ear with part of a pair of scissors. A character is severely burned. There is scene in which an individual cuts open a dead pigeon to smuggle drugs.
Sexual Content: There are some crude sexual references, mostly from one particularly unpleasant character.
Profanity: There are 129 uses of sexual expletives, and occasional use of profanity in other categories.
Alcohol / Drug Use: The plot deals heavily with drug smuggling and dealing, fentanyl specifically, but no one is shown using drugs. Some characters are briefly shown drinking alcohol.

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