Australian Council on Children and the Media

Dirty Dancing 2

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Short takes

Not recommended under 8, PG to 13 (Viol. Lang.)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Dirty Dancing 2
  • a review of Dirty Dancing 2 completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 18 May 2004.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 8 Due to the level of violence in this movie it is not recommended to children under 8.
Children aged 8-13 Children 8-13 will need parental guidance to view this movie.
Children over the age of 13 Children over 13 should be okay to see this movie with or without parental guidance.

About the movie

This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines.

Name of movie: Dirty Dancing 2
Classification: PG
Consumer advice lines: Low level coarse language
Length 86 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Set in Havana, Cuba, just before the revolution and based on true events, Dirty Dancing 2 tells the story of Katie Miller, who moves to Havana with her family. The Miller family move among the circle of well to do Americans who play tennis and go to country club dances. Katie’s a smart girl at school and plans to go to college, but one day while walking home from school she comes across a group of Cubans dancing and obviously enjoying themselves. Katie is enthralled by the dancers, in particular a young Cuban man, Javier Suarez, who works as a waiter at their hotel. The dancers are broken up by an aggressive group of Batista soldiers, but the experience is a life changing one for Katie. She starts going to the Rosa Negra, a Cuban nightclub where she dances with Javier.

Katie is a good dancer as she has learnt from her parents who were accomplished ballroom dancers. Latin dancing is entirely different however and Katie has lots to learn. She’s encouraged to enter the Latin dancing competition which has a prize money of $5000. Javier’s family is very poor, as are most Cubans who live in stark contrast to the rich North Americans. Also Javier’s father was killed by the Batista and Javier has to support his mother and family. Katie therefore persuades Javier to dance with her in the competition. While Katie is dancing with Javier, her parents believe she has formed a relationship with Miller’s boss’s son James and so are shocked to discover she’s actually with a Cuban boy. Javier and Katie make it to the finals in the competition but the night has an unexpected outcome.

Use of violenceinfo

Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.

Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.

There is some violence in this movie:

  • The Batista are seen breaking up the crowd of Cuban dancers, wielding batons and arresting the civilians.
  • James tries to kiss Katie and won’t take no for an answer; he persists until Katie slaps him.
  • Katie’s mother slaps Katie across the face for embarrassing the family.
  • Javier’s brother starts firing a gun into the crowd.
  • Javier attacks a policeman who is about to shoot his brother.
  • Javier fights with his brother.

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

The above mentioned scenes could frighten children in this age group.

Aged five to eightinfo

Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.

The above mentioned scenes could frighten children in this age group.

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.

The violence in this movie is realistic and therefore could still scare children in this age group. However it is quite fleeting and not too graphic.

Over thirteeninfo

Children over the age of thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic physical harm or threats, molestation or sexual assault and / or threats from aliens or the occult.

Children in this age group would probably not be scared by the violence in this movie.

Sexual references

None of concern.

Nudity and sexual activity

There is no nudity, but many revealing costumes, particularly by the dancers. The Latin dancing is very provocative, women reveal a lot of cleavage and the men touch their bodies all over – their breasts, bottoms, legs, etc.

Katie and Javier have sex, although nothing is actually shown.

Use of substances

There is drinking and smoking in the night clubs and the country club. Girls at school are shown smoking too.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie including the following:

  • frequent ‘God’ and ‘oh my God’
  • infrequent 'bastards' and 'arses'

 

In a nutshell

This movie is mainly about dancing; however, there are some side issues included in the movie such as the struggle of the poor against corrupt regimes, racial prejudice and the wide gap between the rich and poor.

Values parents may wish to encourage include:

  • tolerance
  • empathy
  • social equality

Values parents may wish to discourage include:

  • arrogance
  • violence as a way to overcome situations

 

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