Australian Council on Children and the Media

Lucky You

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Not recommended under 8; due lacking interest for the age group and focus on gambling; Parental guidance recommended under 13.

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Lucky You
  • a review of Lucky You completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 10 May 2007.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 8 Not recommended due to lacking interest for the age group and the focus on gambling
Children aged 8-13 Parental Guidance recommended due to the focus on gambling.
Children over the age of 13 OK 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: Lucky You
Classification: PG
Consumer advice lines: Mild themes, Infrequent mild violence
Length 118 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Huckleberry Cheever (Eric Bana) is a professional gambler who loses as often as he wins. His life is dominated by his famous father, L.C.Cheever (Robert Duvall) who has won the National Poker Tournament twice. Cheever betrayed and alienated Huck’s mother by pawning her wedding ring for which Huck never forgave him. Huck is determined to enter the National Tournament but bad luck dogs him and he seems unable to raise the entry fee.
Huck meets young and refreshing Billie (Drew Barrymore) who manages to get through to him that there is more to life than winning and losing. Huck manages to get to the National Tournament and face his father in the event, but succeeds at something more important than winning the tournament.

Themesinfo

Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.

Gambling

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 including:

  • Some ‘heavies’ come to Huck’s home to collect $10,000 he owes from a gambling debt. When he can’t pay they throw him into an empty swimming pool, leaving his face badly bruised.

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.

Apart from the above-mentioned violent scene, there is nothing particularly disturbing for 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.

Apart from the above-mentioned violent scene, there is nothing particularly disturbing for 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.

In addition to the above mentioned violent scene, there are some scenes in this movie that could disturb children aged eight to thirteen, including the following:

  • Children in this age group could be disturbed by the fact that a man had breast implants for a bet.
  • The desperation felt by people who lose money by gambling.

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 are unlikely to be disturbed by anything in this movie.

Product placement

None of concern

Sexual references

None

Nudity and sexual activity

There is some nudity and sexual activity in this movie, including:

  • Huck and Billie kiss passionately and end up in bed together – nothing graphic.

 

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in this movie, including:

  • Some drinking and smoking in casinos.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Shit
  • Jesus

In a nutshell

Lucky You is a romantic drama that draws heavily on the game of poker, which will probably limit its appeal. It is well acted, however, and shows some refreshing honesty.

The main messages from this movie are that there is more to life than winning and losing and that giving and receiving shouldn’t be so complex.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • Honesty
  • Winning isn’t always the best option
  • Love and friendship
  • Forgiveness

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children attitudes and behaviours, and their real-life consequences, such as the devastating and addictive effects that gambling can have on people.

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