BRUISED stars Halle Berry in a Netflix drama about a retired female Mixed Martial Arts fighter battling personal demons. Jackie’s offered a chance to make a comeback, but she doesn’t take the offer until her mother drops off Jackie’s 5-year-old son, Manny, when Manny’s father, an undercover policeman, is killed. Manny saw his father die. This has left him so traumatized he refuses to speak. Jackie must play mom to the boy she abandoned. Can Jackie be a good parent? Can she win her comeback fight and gain a better life for Manny?
BRUISED is a high-quality movie, with strong morally uplifting content. For example, as Jackie develops her relationship with her son, she regains her humanity, and the story becomes touching. However, the movie has lots of crude, immoral content and behavior. Although Jackie’s alcoholism and swearing are portrayed as sad and negative, the movie’s foul language is still much too excessive. Also, the movie’s lewd content is too graphic and contains a lesbian relationship. So, despite the poignant dynamics between the mother and son, BRUISED is too offensive and unacceptable.
Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Strong mixed pagan worldview with strong pagan and moral content, very strong lesbian content and some false religion when female lead’s fight trainer, a woman, meditates and talks to the woman’s young son about it
At least 100 “f” words and dozens more in rap song lyrics, 40 “s” words, 35 other obscenities (plus dozens more in rap song lyrics and including five a** words), 10 GD profanities, and several light profanities, plus woman vomits into a bucket, young boy urinates on the floor in his clothes because he’s too traumatized to ask for help, and woman is seen on a toilet in serious thought, shown from the side with her bare bottom showing from the side
Very strong and strong violence includes frequent footage of brutal Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fights between women, with bloody faces and black eyes as a result, a man shoves a woman against a wall and holds her throat to terrorize her while shoving his elbow into the wall next to her head repeatedly, the man later punches the woman and knocks her down and then smashes a keyboard she gave her young son, and the man threatens the young boy with a beating, while his mother blocks him from getting hit
A man has rough sex with a woman standing against a wall after nearly beating her (making this almost a rape), man pulls woman’s underwear off with no nudity showing (both are clothed during the sex scene) two women have a passionate lesbian sex scene, and a woman accuses her mother of being a prostitute and says she was sexually abused throughout her childhood by her mom’s customers and her mom’s brother, her uncle
Two women are fully naked, both showing themselves topless and their bottoms but no genitalia showing, although their hands are shown in each other’s crotches
A woman is shown with alcohol bottles all over her house, she also drinks alcohol secretly out of a spray bottle, and a man staggers drunkenly through the streets
Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
Smoking and a woman says another woman takes illegal drugs; and,
Numerous arguments where people accuse each other of causing dysfunctional relationships.
BRUISED stars Halle Berry in a drama on Netflix about a retired female Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter battling personal demons while trying to make a comeback and raising the young son she abandoned at birth. BRUISED is a superbly made movie that has a mixed pagan worldview with strong moral elements regarding the raising of the son, but the movie has abundant foul language, alcohol abuse, very strong violence, strong explicit scenes, and strong homosexual elements.
Starring Oscar-winning actress Halle Berry in her directing debut, BRUISED quickly gets into its brutal action with flashbacks to the match that drove Jackie Justice (Halle Berry) to quit fighting after she was humiliated in the ring. Four years later, she’s living in dire poverty with her boyfriend/manager Desi (Adan Canto), who unexpectedly takes her to watch an unsanctioned underground MMA match between two women.
Spotted in the crowd and taunted into an impromptu match, Jackie unleashes brutal fury on a female opponent, finishing her off with a series of whiplash headbutts that also smash her own face. The fight’s organizer afterward offers her the chance to make a comeback with a fight against the woman who drove her into retirement, with a payday of $10,000 if she loses or $20,000 if she wins.
Jackie comes home to one other surprise. Her estranged mother has brought Jackie’s young son, Manny (Danny Boyd, Jr.), to her home, telling her that Manny’s undercover cop father was shot dead. Manny saw it happen, which has left him so traumatized he refuses to speak. Suddenly, Jackie is stuck playing mom to the boy she abandoned after birth. Meanwhile, Jackie’s boyfriend, Desi, is furious to have a child around the house and creates a volatile home life for them both.
Jackie decides she needs to win the money to start a new life away from Desi. She accepts the fight along with new management by its promoter. Thus, she also gains a new trainer, a woman named Buddakhan (Sheila Atim) who is tough on her yet sympathetic to her plight and helps her by watching Manny when Jackie needs a parenting break.
As Desi gets more dangerously angry, Jackie moves out in the dead of night with Manny and winds up staying first with her mom, where she angrily reveals that her mom was a prostitute whose clients and brother sexually abused her as a teenager. She then stays with her new female trainer, Buddakhan. This leads to an unexpected, graphic lesbian relationship between the two women.
Can Jackie be a good parent? Can she win her fight and gain a better life for her and Manny? What will she decide about her lesbian relationship?
BRUISED is a gritty, violent movie that has abundant foul language, brutal MMA matches and a graphic nude sex scene between two women. However, despite these moral failings, it is also a superbly made movie where Halle Berry excels as both a star and director. At first, the movie seems so downbeat that neither Jackie nor anyone else seems sympathetic or worth supporting, but as the movie develops her relationship with her son, she regains her humanity, and it becomes a truly touching story.
Berry’s direction is fantastic, expertly moving between these humane moments and the riveting action scenes in the ring. The final fight is thrilling to watch, and by the end the movie pumps up the viewer so effectively that it can fairly be compared to the original classic ROCKY.
As Jackie’s silent son, Manny, Danny Boyd, Jr. proves himself a young actor to watch as he conveys a multitude of emotions with just his facial expressions and eyes. His portrayal of Manny’s emotional journey throughout the movie pays off with a richly rewarding final moment that ends the movie with a sense of much-needed hope.
BRUISED is a movie that’s artistically high quality, with some strong morally uplifting content. However, it contains lots of strong crude, immoral content and behavior. Although Jackie’s alcoholism and swearing are shown as sad and negative, the movie’s foul language is still much too excessive. Also, the movie’s lewd content is too graphic and, in the end, validates homosexual perversion. So, despite the poignant dynamics between the lead female character and her son, BRUISED is unacceptable, with too much gratuitous objectionable content.
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