IMDb > 12 Years a Slave (2013) > Parents Guide
12 Years a Slave
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Parents Guide for
12 Years a Slave (2013) More at IMDbPro »

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.
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An implied attempt at sex in which a man approaches a girl on a boat and begins to lead her away before being stopped by someone.

A scene where a group of slaves bathe outside--full frontal and rear nudity seen; male and female; full bodies seen (no close-ups).

In a slave market, the slaves are sold nude so that their potential buyers can inspect them. Males: buttocks, back, and torso from hips up. Females: full frontal nudity.

Slave market continued. Men, assumed to be nude, bodies shown above the hip area. Camera pans; possibly more of body shown, but it is blurred.

A clothed rape which lasts about 40 seconds (mainly clothed chests shown as well).

Full frontal and rear nudity is partly visible during the whipping of a nude woman.

A woman is whipped on the back numerous times. The camera angle is usually opposite to the actual contact. But we can still see the graphic wounds, whipping sounds, pained faces and even blood mist spraying from the most savage hits.

A woman who has been whipped is cared for by other slaves.

A man is hit on the back with a wooden club-pan multiple times bloodlessly.

A woman's face and/or eye is scratched, possibly with a razor. Difficult to tell which, as it's brief and seen from a distance.

A man is hanged by the neck on his toes for an extended scene before the rope is cut down.

A man is stabbed once with a knife. Minimal blood.

In one scene, a few slaves are hanged and we see their bodies convulse briefly.

A woman is bloodlessly hit on the head with a bottle.

Frequent uses of 'nigger' and one use of 'bitch' (mostly from whites).

Several characters drink casually throughout the film.

A man says he has been fired once for having alcohol problems.

The whipping, beating, and face-damage scene could all be hard to watch. The rape may upset some viewers.

Themes of racism throughout.

NOTE: To show the brutality of real life, none of this content is inappropriate to the time period or just used for the sake of it. All the nudity, violence and constant use of 'nigger' is used for a reason and a realistic perception into a life of slavery.

Rated R for violence/cruelty, some nudity and brief sexuality

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