“The King of Staten Island” (Universal)
By Catholic News Service
A directionless slacker (Pete Davidson) still trying to come to terms with the long-ago death of his fireman father finds his life transformed when his mom (Marisa Tomei) begins dating another firefighter (Bill Burr) with whom he at first butts heads but eventually discovers common ground.
Below the crust of vulgar behavior and language overlying director and co-writer Judd Apatow’s ultimately moving conversion story lies a salute to such fundamentally positive values as the dignity of work, the importance of emotional connection and the heroism of first responders. Still, his depiction of lower-middle-class life in the borough of the title is not for the easily offended.
Some violence with gore, a brief but graphic scene of casual sex, implied premarital activity, drug dealing and use, several profanities, a couple of milder oaths, pervasive rough and crude language, obscene gestures. The Catholic News Service classification is L — limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association rating is R — restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.