Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that this mature prison drama is full of graphic sexual conversation and several sex scenes that include partial nudity (breasts, butts, etc.). The violence includes a bloody stabbing that's racially motivated, and the language is nonstop -- there's no swear word you can think of that isn't used. Additionally, the movie deals with lots of heavy topics that young kids and even most teens aren't old enough to understand -- marital malaise, redemption, sin, spiritual rebirth, prison's inability to rehabilitate, etc. This isn't an R-rated movie in which the sex and language are played for laughs; with such grown-up subject matter, this is drama is best for adults and possibly the most mature, film-loving older teens.
Sex scenes include a woman's naked breasts and back and a man's naked butt and back. There are several shots of the woman's breasts, and at least a couple of the shots are pretty graphic (thrusting, moaning, implied oral sex, etc.). Many conversations early in the movie revolve around graphic descriptions of sex and how great a prisoner's wife is at it. The explicit talk includes descriptions of positions the inmate remembers fondly, questions about sex in your 60s, and more.
A father threatens to throw his sleeping daughter out of a second-story window if his wife goes through with her threat to leave him. A prison inmate is brutally stabbed multiple times in what seems like a racially motivated killing; the protagonist literally watches him die from behind bars, and the scene is bloody and realistic. In a flashback sequence, viewers see the crime that lands someone in prison, which includes scenes of two dead elderly people bleeding on the floor, one of them with an ankle/foot amputated. Two arsonists are shown burning down houses. A man is threatened and held at gunpoint.
Barely a scene passes without multiple swear words, including "f--k" (and variations thereof), "s--t," "a--hole," "d--k," "c--k," "t-ts," "ass," "hell," "goddamn," "c--t," and more.
There aren't many take-away messages in this film other than that it's nearly impossible to know whether a good con man is lying to you. Otherwise, there's a lot of lying and selfish, destructive behavior. There's an underlying theme of redemption, but whether it happens or not is very ambiguous.
Drugs / Tobacco /
Jack and Madylyn drink and smoke cigarettes every time they're together, except for when they're having breakfast. They drink so often that the liquor store cashier knows what Jack wants without either of them speaking to each other. Lucetta is also shown hanging out in bars smoking and drinking, and there's a retirement party and other scenes in which almost all of the adults are drinking/smoking.