The Butler
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Parents Guide for
Lee Daniels' The Butler (2013/I) More at IMDbPro »The Butler (original title)

The content of this page was created directly by users and has not been screened or verified by IMDb staff.
Since the beliefs that parents want to instill in their children can vary greatly, we ask that, instead of adding your personal opinions about what is right or wrong in a film, you use this feature to help parents make informed viewing decisions by describing the facts of relevant scenes in the title for each one of the different categories: Sex and Nudity, Violence and Gore, Profanity, Alcohol/Drugs/Smoking, and Frightening/Intense Scenes.
Visit our Parents Guide Help to learn more

In a bedroom scene, a woman appears to be nude, but has a quilt covering her; her husband is wearing a T-shirt and is covered from the waist down by the quilt (sex is implied).

A butler asks a kitchen worker to have sex and that he will put towels down on the kitchen floor for it; she declines.

A black velvet painting shows a naked woman in full nudity except for the crotch area.

A man in a kitchen begins to tell a sexual joke: "She says to put my whole hand in, then to put my other hand in. Now, clap! I said, I can't'"; then he mouths a few words during loud kitchen noise and the punch line is inaudible.

Two night scenes show two hanged men dead in close-up with blood seeping from the ropes around their necks.

On a plantation worked by sharecroppers, a male owner takes a bi-racial woman into a shed and we hear screams (rape is implied); the woman's young son shouts and the man exits the shed and shoots the boy's father (there's no blood) in front of him; the boy screams and cries as the owner asks who else wants to be shot and walks away; later, we see the boy's mother sitting in front of her cabin, catatonic and we hear that she is crazy.

KKK members in a truck topped with a lighted cross stop a bus of Freedom Riders, spit on the windows, break the windows with ball bats, rock the bus and shout unintelligible taunts; men and women on the bus scream while men with torches set fire to the bus; a man wearing a white sheet and hood douses the vehicle with gasoline and the screen goes white; we then see an original photo of the bus in the 1960s, with its top half burned off and the rest charred.

We hear gunshots off screen and the scene cuts to Jackie Kennedy sitting on a sofa with blood covering the skirt of her suit and her lower legs while she cries and howls in anguish; a butler says in the kitchen, "They blew his head off."

A couple is shot at three times on the street and they duck into an alley, unharmed.

Several violent scenes from the 1950s-1970s Civil Rights Movement show original footage of race riots with African-Americans being beaten by police and dragged away by the feet; in Selma, fire hoses and dogs are turned loose on African-Americans, who scream and cry (no bites are shown) and people are beaten and carried away; in the current time, a man lies in a jailhouse bunk and his face/eyes very swollen and bruised.

We hear that Martin Luther King, Jr. is dead and we see streets full of storefronts in Washington, DC smashed in with barrels and bricks; men and women run, screaming and crying and we see footage of inner city rubble and slums.

Actual footage of Vietnam warfare is shown with bombs that cause some flames with large amounts of smoke, along with soldiers shooting rifles.

African-Americans and supportive whites sit at a Woolworth lunch counter and cannot get service; after several hours, white people come in and slap the seated people in the head, spit in their faces, shake them and slap them while a counter manager tosses hot coffee into an African-American man's face, causing him to scream; the police arrest the people seated at the counter and they receive 30 days in jail.

A man and his son argue over politics very loudly in several scenes spanning years and the man finally orders the son and his Black Panther girlfriend out of the house; in one scene, the man slaps the son in the face and in another scene, the mother slaps the son in the face; in a third scene, the mother slaps a younger son in the side of the face and neck.

A newspaper shows a black-and-white picture of an African-American man with his head and face smashed in.

An African-American man punches through hotel window glass to obtain food and we see his bloody hand; an older man bandages the younger man's hand and slaps him in the face for calling himself a derogatory term for African-Americans.

A group of people is shown being trained to withstand an attack by providing attacks and verbal abuse to each other in groups seated on chairs in a Civil Rights club meeting.

A speaker at a Black Panther meeting tells the group to kill two whites for every African-American that dies in a riot and a woman says that she is ready to do so while a man says that he is not and he quits the group; we hear that two members of the group were shot dead.

In one scene a man said 'Son of a Bitch fucked a bee'., 10 scatological terms, 7 anatomical terms, 13 mild obscenities, 24 derogatory terms for African-Americans.

One scene used over 35 uses of the word 'nigga'.

A butler takes two prescription bottles from the Dallas assassination and keeps them on his nightstand at home.

Glasses of champagne are served at a state dinner at the White House and we see men and women drinking.

Men and women drink from bottles of beer on their front porch.

Men and women drink short cocktails and bottles of beer.

Many open bottles of alcohol sit on a table at a party.

Men and women at home drink wine at dinner.

A man drinks a cocktail alone.

A woman opens a bottle of wine and then closes it without a drink.

Butlers serve cocktails and beer in hotel restaurants and to various US Presidents.

White House butlers and kitchen staff drink a champagne toast in the kitchen.

Men and women smoke cigarettes at home as well as on the street and in restaurants and on television shows and at parties.

The atmosphere of the movie is highly somber and infrequently intense.

Scenes revolving around violence and hate crimes, as well as fighting that breaks out at racial protests, are emotional.




MPAA:
Rated PG-13 for some violence and disturbing images, language, sexual material, thematic elements and smoking
Certification:
Argentina:13 / Canada:14A (Alberta/Manitoba/Maritimes/Ontario) / Canada:PG (British Columbia) / Canada:G (Quebec) / Denmark:11 / Germany:12 / Hong Kong:IIB / Hungary:12 / Ireland:12A / Japan:G / Mexico:B / Netherlands:16 / Philippines:PG-13 / Portugal:M/12 (Qualidade) / Singapore:NC-16 / South Korea:15 / Sweden:15 / Switzerland:12 / UK:12A / USA:PG-13 (certificate #48517)

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