Information for Parents
Common Sense Media says Iffy for 14+
Fact-based thriller paints harsh picture of drug trade.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Snitch is an action thriller that doesn't sugarcoat the violence inherent in the drug trade. There are plenty of bloody gunfights and shootings, some at close range, and other brutal clashes, too (a man is shown strangling another, etc.). Cars chase and drive into each other on freeways, crashing and exploding and claiming lives. Criminals threaten each other with words and weapons (mostly guns). There are also allusions to prisoners beating up others to exert their dominance. A teen is shown discussing the use of Ecstasy (though he's not seen actually using), and he and a friend plot the delivery and sale of drugs. There's also some social drinking and swearing, including "s--t," "hell," and "ass."
- Families can talk about Snitch's messages. How does the movie's violent content affect the impact of any positive themes/take-aways?
- How does the movie depict the drug trade? Do the consequences for use/dealing seem realistic? Fair?
- Talk about how Jason gets in trouble in the first place. Is it believable? What do you think of the legal consequences of his one mistake? Do they seem fair?
The good stuff
Positive messages: A father's love knows no bounds, and justice will be served. Very strong anti-drug messages. Mistakes have consequences. Some means to the end aren't exactly legal, but the characters' motives are strong.
Positive role models: John Matthews is a committed, dedicated father who is aware of his shortcomings and is eager to make up for them. He's willing to put his life on the line to get his son out of jail -- no matter the stakes, no matter the danger. Matthews' son faces many difficult challenges, but his character stays strong.
What to watch for
Violence: The body count is high, and the means to get there pretty brutal, with characters taking shots at each other with pistols, semi-automatics, and rifles, sometimes at close range and while driving. Other clashes include hand-to-hand combat and a character strangling another (though the main character never beats anyone up). Cars careen off the highway, crashing into others and/or exploding. There's plenty of discussion about how people are dispensed with by drug cartels once they're no longer considered useful. Threats to kids and families. A character in prison is beaten and (it's suggested) raped.
Sexy stuff: Some kissing between loving couples.
Language: Language includes "s--t," "goddammit," "p---y," "bitch," "hell," "ass," "damn," "crap," "oh my God," and more.
Consumerism: Several labels/products are seen, including Skype, Dodge, GMC, iPhone, Apple, Ford, Bugati, and Wikipedia.
Drinking, drugs and smoking: Drugs -- specifically the shipment, sale, and use of MDMA/Ecstasy -- are at the heart of the story; marijuana and cocaine are also seen. Viewers don't see people using (except in one case where a character is forced to inhale cocaine to test whether it's genuine), but teens do talk about having popped some pills. Some drinking -- socially and when the main character is going through a rough time. A drug dealer smokes.