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Parents Guide

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Sex & Nudity

  • A brief shot of a fully nude woman in the shower (this is in a non-sexual way and only lasts a second).
  • A man and woman start to undress each other, sex is implied but not seen.
  • A woman removes her clothes but only her bare shoulders are visable. She then walks over to a man and starts to unzip his pants. Sex is implied but not seen.
  • A woman is seen who is pregnant, although her pregnancy isn't brought up much during the film.
  • A woman is mentioned to be "on the curse" (her period). she moans in pain and another woman tells the nurses not to let her have any coke because of the cocaine in it.

Violence & Gore

  • An old man has a heart attack and dies.
  • Several characters are abused, mistreated and psychologically tortured, to the point where a few of them have mental breakdowns. This includes a woman shrieking that "something is crawling all over her!" and going into hysterics, a woman panicking over a lost dress, a woman forcing herself to have sex with a man (off-screen) and a woman losing her mind after witnessing a man's death.
  • A horse is seen breaking its leg and falling over in pain. A hillbilly then shoots it in the head, and a child covers his eyes.
  • A woman's suicide attempt is mentioned in the beginning of the film, before she enters the dance competition.
  • A man injures his leg and falls over. Frequently he falls unconscious and is forcefully woken up by having castor oil given to him and being doused in ice water, after which he is forced to dance and compete despite his injuries.


  • Only mild language (goddamn, shut up, hell, stinkhole, bastard, son-of-a-bitch/bitch).

Alcohol, Drugs & Smoking

  • Most of the characters smoke throughout the entire film.
  • A woman on her period is warned by a friend not to let the nurses give her any coke (cocaine), but cocaine was a common medication in the 1930's, when the film is set, so it would have been considered a pharmaceutical substance rather than an illegal drug at the time.

Frightening & Intense Scenes

  • The theme of the film is the depression and it is shown very intensely.
  • Most of the film is distressing as people brutally compete in the competition.
  • The final scene (mentioned in the violence & gore section) is very intense and could be stressful for younger viewers.
  • The horse scene in the film intro might bother some viewers.


The Parents Guide items below may give away important plot points.

Violence & Gore

  • A suicide/homicide: a main character asks a man to shoot her, he does and the bloody aftermath is seen on screen

See also

Taglines | Plot Summary | Synopsis | Plot Keywords