Code Black

2013 NR 1h 28m DVD

Code Black

2013 NR 1h 28m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
Training an illuminating lens on a group of residents at Los Angeles County General Hospital, physician and filmmaker Ryan McGarry takes viewers inside the world of a public hospital -- his own -- for a close-up look at the ailing medical system.
NR - Not rated. This movie has not been rated by the MPAA.
age 14+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 14+
age 14+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that Code Black is an unflinching documentary about a group of resident doctors who work in the Los Angeles County Hospital's world-renowned emergency room. Although there's a smattering of strong language (the occasional "s--t" or "f--k"), what can really make the movie difficult to watch at times are the real-life scenes of bloody and extremely injured patients, a couple of whom die, despite the medical team's best efforts. There's some non-sexual nudity and a bit of social drinking as well. Teens interested in becoming doctors or nurses will be enlightened by the movie's position that the most challenging job in medicine might also arguably be the most rewarding.

Sexual Content

Non-sexual nudity when patients are being treated.


The emergency room is a bloody, graphic place. Some of the patients the E.R. doctors see are victims of violence and are shown with multiple gun wounds and other major injuries. Some die. People are shown in varying degrees of undress, even completely nude while being worked on by the doctors. There's a lot of blood on the bodies, gurneys, and on the floor of the emergency room.


The doctors interviewed in the documentary curse infrequently, saying things like "f--k," "f--king," "s--t," "dicking around," etc.

Social Behavior

Code Black asserts that everyone should be entitled to healthcare, regardless of their socio-economic or citizenship status. The doctors stress that county hospitals aren't just for undocumented immigrants but for everyone: the working poor, the temporarily out of work, the fully insured who got sick nearby or wanted a world-class trauma center, etc. The doctors make it clear that they know they could be making more money working in private practice, but they feel their work -- as hard as it is -- is worthwhile since they're truly making a difference in the community.


Not applicable

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

The doctors are briefly shown drinking socially while out at dinner or at someone's house for a get-together.

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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