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Parents Guide

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Sex & Nudity

  • There are strong sex references.
  • The main point of conflict in this film is Florence's strong aversion to sexual intimacy.
  • It is insinuated that she was sexually abused by her father (the camera shows her lying on a bed, cringing, while he is shown behind her, drinking alcohol), but she cannot bring herself to confess this abuse to anyone, not even to her priest or her new husband.
  • The film constantly alternates from present to past as the couple prepares to consummate their marriage after the wedding ceremony.
  • During their courtship, we see them kiss.
  • Edward attempts to slip his hand up Florence's thigh in a theatre full of couples making out (which Florence stops).
  • She lies on top of him in the grass.
  • Other scenes have an almost palpable sense of sensuality that simultaneously hints at Florence's growing terror of complete sexual intimacy.
  • On their wedding night, though, things get much more difficult.
  • Florence experiences extreme aversion to any kind of physical contact, even the slightest touch.
  • Each time Edward tries to touch her, Florence has flashbacks to her abuse and tries to think of happier moments in her past in order to escape the present
  • We see thighs, legs, and his backside.
  • Their sexual encounter manages to avoid genital nudity, but explicit dialogue makes it clear that the couple hasn't been able to consummate their marriage.
  • Florence later mentions a homosexual male couple that lives together.
  • She says this as she tells a very frustrated Edward that she wants to be with him, but is "no good at sex," calling it "revolting."
  • Instead, she proposes they live with one another and that he may have sex whomever he wants, as long as he's happy and free and loves her.
  • Eventually, it's decided that they will never be able to consummate their marriage.
  • Because abuse so permeates Florences' existence, she cannot fully be herself as she fails to muster the courage to tell even her husband of the abuse she's endured
  • Edward struggles enormously because he cannot understand his wife and her aversion to sexual intimacy
  • In his frustration and anger, he calls Florence a list of names.
  • He accuses her of being "frigid," and says she must be bad at sex.
  • Later in the film's chronology, a group of men and women lounge together in a living room in the mid '70s, discussing open sexuality and the increasingly unfashionable idea of being conventional and monogamous
  • A group of college-age men sit around at a club, crudely discussing the female anatomy.
  • Similarly, Florence reads from a book called The Sex Manual, where she learns about the male anatomy and how to be intimate with one's husband.
  • A couple of other scenes show a woman's bare breasts
  • A song mentions a "two-timing woman."
  • We see women in lingerie.

Violence & Gore

  • Though we do not see Florence sexually abused, it's clearly insinuated
  • Florence carries a visible fear of her father.
  • In one scene, he yells at her and screams profanities, leaving her shaking and timid
  • Edward also has a temper; he punches a man in the face and kicks him while he's on the ground.
  • He also throws things and yells in anger.
  • Edward's mother, Marjorie, was hit in the head by a train door in her younger years
  • Because of the accident, she now suffers from brain damage
  • While she is functional, she cannot remember many details and is flighty, unpredictable and lost in her own world.


  • God's name is misused twice
  • The British profanity "bloody" is used a handful of times.
  • Other profanities include "d--n," "h---," "b--tard" and "b--ch."
  • Someone is called a "fool" and "square."

Alcohol, Drugs & Smoking

  • In multiple scenes, people consume wine, beer and other hard liquor, sometimes to excess.
  • They also smoke cigarettes and cigars.

Frightening & Intense Scenes

See also

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