Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that The Last Picture Show is one of the greatest American films ever made. The emotional depth and strong sexual content throughout the film make this one best for mature teens and adults only. Characters speak freely and frankly about sex, losing their virginity, and prostitution, and there's some full-frontal female nudity and bare male bottoms. Several characters have sex, though the main act is mostly offscreen. Characters smoke and underage characters drink.
Sexual content throughout the film: One of the older teen characters has an affair with a married woman. During a skinny-dipping scene in a swimming pool, there is full-frontal nudity of women, and backside nudity of men. In a car, a boyfriend and girlfriend make out; the girlfriend removes her top and bra. A group of older teen boys chip in to pay for a prostitute to have sex with their friend, a mute boy who is a virgin. They watch as the boy climbs into a car with the prostitute, who berates him over his performance the entire time, slaps in the face, and leaves him with a bloody nose. Two of the main characters attempt to have sex in a motel room. The woman's top is removed and her breasts are exposed. Some sexual noises during another encounter with shots of the woman's hands tensing. A high school basketball coach makes reference to masturbation as to why his players lack vitality at practice.
Two teenage boys get in a fight over a girl, resulting in one smashing a beer bottle into the other's face. The boy has to go to the hospital and wears an eyepatch until his damaged eye fully heals. A young boy is shown dead on the road after being hit by a truck.
"Sons-a-bitches," "pussy," "pissants," and "bastard." Characters use the middle finger gesture.
This is not so much a film with a feel-good message to convey as it is an honest reflection of a year in the early 1950's in which two boys grow into manhood amidst a dying small town in Texas.
Drugs / Tobacco /
As a reflection of life in a small Texas town in the early 1950s, several of the characters smoke cigarettes and a high school coach uses chewing tobacco. Characters who are underage by today's standards (and not necessarily those of the early 1950s) drink beer and whiskey. Driving a teen boy home from an unpleasant altercation, an older woman gives the boy a flask of whiskey to drink during the long ride.