Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that Private Benjamin, a 1980 award winner and box office bonanza for Goldie Hawn, is a salute to the young women who were just beginning to assert themselves in the early years of what was then known as "women's lib." Although it's a comedy through and through -- with lots of laughs, broad send-ups of chauvinistic men, fairy-tale moments that cling to and then shatter stereotypes -- it was as timely as it was silly. Its R rating is a result of numerous sexual scenes, which include partial nudity, foreplay, implied oral sex, and sexual intercourse shot from the participants' shoulders up. Most of these scenes are intended as humor. One comic attempted sexual assault encounter feels particularly outdated and tasteless. Salty language ("goddamn," "hell," "ass", "s--t") and sexual chatter about orgasms and prior sexual experience is heard occasionally. Some Jewish stereotyping includes a prototypical lavish Jewish wedding, the Jewish princess, a Jewish doctor, and a generally affluent culture. One scene finds an inebriated army officer trying to inspect her troops; some casual drinking occurs as well. A campfire scene shows a group of female soldiers sharing a marijuana cigarette and getting stoned. Lots of characters smoke.
Numerous lovemaking scenes: off-camera oral sex in a car; high-spirited kissing and foreplay before a couple has sex on a bathroom floor (during the actual sexual activity, lovers are seen only from the neck up); a nearly nude couple is caught in the act in the back of a truck; a senior officer starts to rape an enlisted soldier on the floor of an airplane, but she escapes; a new relationship for Private Benjamin results in several bedroom sex scenes (no nudity). Other scenes include partial nudity, skimpy underwear, a painting of a bare-breasted woman, and discussion of orgasms, "first times," and satisfaction during sex.
A brief fight breaks out between Private Benjamin and another new recruit. They tussle, fall over cots, smash into a locker. An attempted rape ends when the would-be victim flees. The heroine punches an arrogant, sexist male.
Swearing and sexual remarks include "ass," "holy s--t," "hell," "schmuck," goddamn," "Jesus," "orgasm," and "I'm coming." Women discuss their first sexual experience, orgasms, and sex in general.
Made in 1980, the film promotes women stepping out of previously accepted gender roles and encourages women and girls to develop self-esteem and forge new paths.
Cuisinart, La Costa Resort, Panasonic.
Drugs / Tobacco /
Five women smoke marijuana and get stoned around a campfire. A bar scene shows customers drinking. A female army officer gets drunk and conducts an inspection while intoxicated. Many characters smoke.