Notes on Movies for Which a Learning Guide has Not
Been Written -- Titles Starting with the Letter "S"


A,   B,   C,   D,   E,   F,   G,   H,    I,    J,   KLM,  
N,   O,   P,   Q,   R,   T,   U,   VW,   XY,   Z   

For the meanings of the initials in brackets at the end of many of the entries, click here.



Sabrina    (1954) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: Billy Wilder.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Safe Passage    (1994) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for a scene of marijuana use and limited vulgar language; Director: Robert Ackerman.    There are many strengths to this film about parenting and growing up. But the mother smokes marijuana with her kids. This places the movie outside what we believe to be the cultural consensus for adults to show or recommend to children. [PD] (JAF)

Safety Last!    (1923) No MPAA Rating; Directors: Fred C. Newmeyer and Sam Taylor.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Safety Not Guaranteed    (2012) MPAA Rating: R for language including some sexual references ; Director: Colin Trevorrow.     This is a story of journalists, one paid and two interns, trying to develop a story about a man advertising for a partner to time travel with him. The film has relatively poor production values and the story is not convincing. TWM doesn't feel that it would grab a young audience. The only use we see for the film would be to show to a journalism class for a critique of the unethical actions of the journalists. [ITO, NR] (JAF,2013)

Sahara     (1943) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: Zoltan Korda     This is a dated but entertaining feel good WW II propaganda film about how a single U.S. tank with a crew of a few Americans, British and assorted allied soldiers decimate a large German regiment from Rommel's Afrika Corps. The treatment of the black Sudanese British soldier is remarkably enlightened for its time. There are two prisoners: one is an evil German Nazi and the other an Italian who comes over to the Allied side. This film might be interesting to show classes studying WW II but it isn't worth the time. NR (JAF, 2009)

Saint Joan    (1957) No MPAA Rating; Director: Otto Preminger.    See the sections on this movie in Reel v. Real: How Hollywood Turns Fact Into Fiction and Past Imperfect.

Sakharov    (1984) No MPAA Rating; Director: Jack Gold.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Salesman    (1968) No MPAA Rating; Directors: Albert Maysles and David Maysles.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Salome    (1923) No MPAA Rating; Director: Charles Bryant.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Salt of the Earth    (1954) No MPAA Rating; Director: Herbert J. Biberman.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Same Time Next Year    (1978) No MPAA Rating; Director: Robert Mulligan.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

San Francisco Earthquake and Fire, April 18, 1906    (1906) No MPAA Rating; Director: None.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

The Sandlot    (1993) MPAA Rating: PG for some language and kids chewing tobacco; Director: David M. Evans.    There is nothing really negative about this movie. It is suitable for elementary school kids, grades 3 - 6. Good information about Babe Ruth and baseball. The character played by James Earl Jones is not realistic because blacks were not permitted to play in the big leagues when Ruth was playing. [LI] (JAF)

The Sands of Iwo Jima    (1949) No MPAA Rating; Director: Allan Dwan.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Sarafina    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Sarah T.: Portrait of a Teenage Alcoholic    (1975) No MPAA Rating; Director: Richard Donner.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Saturday Night Fever    (1977) MPAA Rating: R; Director: John Badham.    The dialogue for this film contains gross sexual allusions and extreme profanity. However, it is one of the great popular dance films. For a film about dancing and young people, which we believe is one of the best films of all time, see "Strictly Ballroom". For dance combined with a cold war thriller, see "White Nights". [PD] (JAF)

Saving Private Ryan    (1999) MPAA Rating: R for violence; Director: Steven Spielberg.    This is a very good film with several beneficial messages including: war is hell in which good people die gruesome deaths, and our fathers, grandfathers and great grandfathers made tremendous sacrifices for our country in the Second World War.  These are very important and beneficial lessons, however, the gore and violence shown in this movie are not suitable for children.   "Saving Private Ryan" was intended for adults and leaves mature people with images that haunt them.  Why subject children to this?   There are many other good films about WW II. TWM suggests that adults refrain from showing this movie to children.   The people who should see "Saving Private Ryan" are the leaders of any country before they authorize a war and young adults about to sign up for the military.

For films on the U.S. experience in the Second World War, see the United States History and Culture section of the Subject Matter Index. For a discussion of this film, see History Goes to the Movies.

A teacher wrote to us that: "I am a high school history teacher and was surprised by the fact that you list 'Saving Private Ryan' as not suitable for children. The movie is violent, but so is war. I would agree that it is not appropriate for grades K-8, but high school age is another story (with parental permission slips as it is R-rated). I took my high school's history club to view it in the theater and it was well-received... Also consider the realism of the film- it received praise from the Veterans of Foreign Wars. The equipment, clothing, and weapons of the film are all true to history." Ken Koncerak, Teacher, Fredericktown, PA. TWM thanks Mr. Koncerak for this perspective and respects his opinion. Reasonable minds can differ on this. We stand by our refusal to recommend this film for persons under 18 years of age. [NR] (JAF)

Say Anything    (1989) MPAA Rating: PG-13; Director: Cameron Crowe.    This is a truly delightful high school romance with excellent messages about friendship, forgiveness, romantic relationships, and father/daughter relationships. In this movie the nice guy gets what he desires and what he deserves. There is no violence. High school graduates make love in a relationship that is on its way to strong commitment. If you are going to show this movie to children, the one caution is that the couple makes love too soon. In this case it worked out, but getting serious too fast has real dangers. [PD] (JAF & DEF)

Sayonara    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Scarface    (1932) MPAA Rating: PG; Directors: Howard Hawks and Richard Rosson.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

The Scarlet Empress     (1934) No MPAA Rating; Director: Josef von Sternberg.     Some historians contend that this film is not historically accurate. See the section on this movie in Past Imperfect. [NR]

The Scarlet Letter    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

The Scarlet Pimpernel     (1934) No MPAA Rating; Director: Harold Young.     The film is entertaining to watch (and the book is entertaining to read). It has been However, in our opinion there is not enough curriculum related content to justify showing it in class. It might serve as one of a group of movies to assign for children to watch out of class. "A Tale of Two Cities" is much better as a literary work and a film. The stage musical of "The Scarlet Pimpernel" was a soaring success but, as a teaching tool, suffers from the same deficiencies as the movie. There is a section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies. [ITO] (JAF)

The Scent of Green Papaya     (1993) No MPAA Rating; Director: Tran Ahn Hung.     This film is beautiful and artsy. It is too slow moving and will not be tolerated by most children. [NA] (JAF & DEF)

Schindler's List    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

The Scout     (1994) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for a moment of strong language; Director: Michael Ritchie.     We could not find any curriculum related content. The film contains mild profanity. [ITO]

The Sea Hawk    (1940) No MPAA Rating; Director: Michael Curtiz.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

The Searchers     A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Searching For Bobby Fischer    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Secondhand Lions    (2003) MPAA Rating: PG for thematic material, language and action violence; Director: Tim McCanlies.    "'Secondhand Lions' follows the comedic adventures of an introverted boy left on the doorstep of a pair of reluctant, eccentric great-uncles whose exotic remembrances stir the boy's spirit and re-ignite the men's lives. All of the staff agrees that this is a good movie." Marah, Education Administrator, Colorado Springs, CO. Suggested grades: 9-12. At TWM we have seen this movie and cannot find a way to make it into a worthwhile teaching tool. [ITO] (JAF)

The Secret     (1992) No MPAA Rating (TV); Director: Karen Arthur.     The secret is the fact that a nine year old child and his grandfather are both hiding their inability to read caused by dyslexia. The grandfather has kept this hidden from everyone but his wife and his best friend for more than 50 years. The grandson is just starting. The script is trite and the acting of all but Kirk Douglas, Bruce Boxleitner and Brock Peters is terrible. The direction also leaves much to be desired. This was suggested by a teacher, probably because the film shows children the ramifications of keeping a treatable condition secret for a lifetime. Children need to know that learning disabilities are something that people of all ages have and which can only be dealt with in the light of day with love and understanding. At some point we need to show this to a class to see how students will react to the poor production values. (JAF & DEF, 2007)

Secrets and Lies     (1995) MPAA Rating: R for language. Director Mike Leigh.   This film is set in England and is about a black woman who was adopted and raised by a black family. After her adoptive mother dies, she decides to look up her birth mother, who turns out to be a white woman. This is a brilliant and funny movie about modern day Britain but can apply to racism in any society. It's lots of fun with great messages. But it has sexual innuendos that many parents would find inappropriate for ages 5 - 15. For parents, watch this movie with your children when they are older. For teachers, perhaps it would be helpful for 11th and 12th grade with permission slips signed by parents. [PD] and [LI] for 11th and 12th grades. (JAF & DEF)

The Secret Life of Bees     (2008) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for thematic material and some violence; Director: Gina Prince-Bythewood     This is a delightful film about a young girl trying to find out what happened to her mother, which has been recommended by a number of teachers. The only reason that we haven't created a guide for it is lack of time. LI (JAF, 2009)

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty    (1947) No MPAA Rating; Director: Norman Z. McLeod.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Sense And Sensibility    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Serene Velocity    (1970) No MPAA Rating; Director: Ernie Gehr.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Sergeant Ryker    (1968) No MPAA Rating; Director: Buzz Kulik.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Sergeant York    (1941) No MPAA Rating; Director: Howard Hawkes.    Suggested by a TWM User. See the sections on this movie in Reel v. Real: How Hollywood Turns Fact Into Fiction, History by Hollywood: The Use and Abuse of the American Past, History Goes to the Movies. [LI]

Seven Brides For Seven Brothers    (1954) MPAA Rating: G; Director: Stanley Donen.    This film is ranked #21 on the American Film Institute's List of the 25 Greatest Movie Musicals (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film. This movie has been Suggested by a TWM User.

Seven Days In May    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

The Seven Year Itch    (1955) No MPAA Rating; Director: Billy Wilder.    This film is ranked #51 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006).

Seventh Heaven    (1927) No MPAA Rating; Director: Frank Borzage.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Sex, Lies and Videotape    (1989) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Steven Soderbergh.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

The Sex Life of the Polyp    (1928) No MPAA Rating; Director: Thomas Chalmers.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Shadow of a Doubt    (1943) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Alfred Hitchcock.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Shadowlands    (1985) No MPAA Rating; Director: Norman Stone.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Shadowlands    (1993) MPAA Rating: PG for thematic elements; Director: Richard Attenborough.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Shadows    (1959) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: John Cassavetes.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Shaft    (1971) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Gordon Parks.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Shake Hands With The Devil    (1959) No MPAA Rating; Director: Michael Anderson.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Shakespeare in Love     (1998) MPAA Rating: R for sexuality; Director: John Madden.     TWM has created a Snippet Lesson Plan for this film which keeps most of the value of the movie as an introduction to Shakespeare and particularly to Romeo and Juliet and eliminates the sexually explicit scenes.

Shall We Dance?    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Shampoo    (1975) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Hal Ashby.    This film is ranked #47 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006).

Shane    (1953) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: George Stevens.     This film is ranked #69 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Shanghai Express    (1932) No MPAA Rating; Director: Josef von Sternberg.    See the section on this movie in Past Imperfect.

She Done Him Wrong    (1933) No MPAA Rating; Director: Lowell Sherman.    This film is ranked #75 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

She Said No    (1991) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: John Patterson.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

She's Too Young    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Shenandoah    (1965) No MPAA Rating; Director: Andrew V. McLaglen.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Sherlock, Jr.    (1924) No MPAA Rating; Director: Buster Keaton.    This film is ranked #62 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Sherman's March    (1986) No MPAA Rating; Director: Ross McElwee.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Shiloh    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Shirley Valentine    (1989) No MPAA Rating; Director: Lewis Gilbert.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Shock Corridor    (1963) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: Samuel Fuller.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Shogun    (1980) No MPAA Rating; Director: Jerry London.    "This is an excellent film for mature students who are taking AP World History in that it gives a good view of Japanese culture and customs. For Example: The Shogunate System. Also, though historical fiction, the characters are based on actual people." Kathy Summerford, Teacher, Columbus, GA. Suggested grades: 11-12. [LI]

The Shootist    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

The Shop Around the Corner    (1940) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: Ernst Lubitsch.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

A Shot in the Dark    (1964) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Blake Edwards.    This film is ranked #48 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006).

Show Boat    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Show People    (1928) No MPAA Rating; Director: King Vidor.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Sid and Nancy    (1986) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Alex Cox.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Siege    (1940) No MPAA Rating; Director: Unlisted.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

The Siege    (1998) MPAA Rating: R for violence, language and brief nudity; Director: Edward Zwick.    Suggested by a TWM User.

Sign of the Pagan    (1954) No MPAA Rating; Director: Douglas Sirk.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Silas Marner    (1922) No MPAA Rating; Director: Frank P. Donovan.    Suggested by a TWM User. [LI]

Silence of the Lambs    (1991) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Jonathan Demme.    This film is ranked #65 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Silkwood     (1983) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Mike Nichols.     This is a good film about an important event in U.S. corporate and labor history. It is great for adults and older children. But there is a lot of marijuana smoking shown, much profanity, and some sexual innuendo. There is a discussion of this movie in Reel v. Real: How Hollywood Turns Fact Into Fiction. [NR] (JAF)

Silver Streak    (1976) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Arthur Hiller.    This film is ranked #95 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006).

Simon Birch    (1998) MPAA Rating: PG for language, emotional thematic elements, and an accident scene; Director: Mark Steven Johnson.    A teacher reports that this movie "covers 5 of the 6 aspects of health and covers spiritual health without too much religion. I addressed how the main character found his own spiritual expression without any guidance from his parents, while not promoting any religion to my class--simply the respect for people to participate or not on their own terms. "

The Simple Life of Noah Dearborn    (1999) MPAA Rating: PG for some mild language; Director: Gregg Champion.    Suggested by a TWM User.

A Simple Twist Of Fate    (1994) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for a drug-related situation; Director: Gilles McKinnon.    Suggested by a TWM User.

Singing in the Rain    (1952) MPAA Rating: G; Director: Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly.    This film is ranked #10 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). It is ranked #16 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006). It is also ranked #1 on the American Film Institute's List of the 25 Greatest Movie Musicals (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film. It was also Suggested by: "I think you should include this film in the dance portion at least. Gene Kelly and Cyd Charisse have some great dances as well as Donald O'Connor and Debbie Reynolds. The dance number in the rain is a classic." Mary Kollmorgen, Teacher; Tulsa, OK. TWM agrees and if we can ever get to it, we'll create a Learning Guide for this film. [LI] (JAF)

Sink the Bismarck!    (1960) No MPAA Rating; Director: Lewis Gilbert.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Frontline: Six O'Clock News    (1996) No MPAA Rating; Director: Ross McElwee.    See the entry for this film in Reading in the Reel World: Teaching Documentaries and Other Nonfiction Texts by John Golden, National Council of Teachers of English, 2006. (JAF & DEF)

The Sixth Sense     (1999) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense thematic material and violent images; Director: M. Night Shyamalan.     While this film is about the fantasies of a child, it is for adults, or rather, some adults. It contains gruesome scenes of bleeding, vomiting corpses as a child's fantasies come to life. We don't think the movie will help children deal with death or anything else. [PD] (JAF)

Six Weeks    (1982) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Tony Bill.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

The Six Wives of Henry VIII    (1971) No MPAA Rating; Director: Naomi Capon and John Glenister.    See the section on this movie in Reel v. Real: How Hollywood Turns Fact Into Fiction.

Sky High    (1922) No MPAA Rating; Director: Lynn Reynolds.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Sleeper    (1973) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Woody Allen.    This film is ranked #80 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006).

Sleeping With The Enemy    (1991) MPAA Rating: R for wife abuse terror and a sex scene; Director: Joseph Rubin.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Sleepless in Seattle    (1993) MPAA Rating: PG for some language; Director: Nora Ephron.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Slumdog Millionaire    (2008) MPAA Rating: R for some violence, disturbing images and language; Director: Danny Boyle    Winner of lots of Academy Awards in 2009, this film is great fun, but doesn't win a million bucks in the teaching game. It also deserves its R rating. (2009, JAF & DEF)



Small Wonders    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

The Smithsonian and the Presidency    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Smoke Signals    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Snow White    (1933) No MPAA Rating; Director: Dave Fleischer.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs    (1937) MPAA Rating: G; Director: David Hand.    This film is ranked #49 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Solomon Northup's Odyssey    (1984) No MPAA Rating; Director: Gordon Parks.    "This film is a fairly accurate summary of 'Twelve Years A Slave' by Solomon Northup. Northup was a free man of color who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in the 1840's. The film is a good visual representation of antebellum Louisiana, conditions of slavery in the Deep South, and cotton and sugar cane cultivation of the period. I use the movie with the book." Cindy Cole, Teacher, Louisiana. Suggested grades: 6-8. Other teachers have recommended this film as well. [LI]

Some Like It Hot    (1959) No MPAA Rating; Director: Billy Wilder.    This film is ranked #14 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). It is ranked #1 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Something About Amelia    (1984) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Randa Haines.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Something For Joey    (1977) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Lou Antonio.    "'Something For Joey' is an excellent movie that shows the love and respect that brothers have for each other. It is based on the true story of John Cappilletti, a running back for the Penn State football team. He won the Heisman trophy due in large part to the inspiration he drew from his brother Joey, who was dying. Joey would tell him to score touchdowns for him and this helped him through his troubling times. John ultimately gave the Heisman to his brother." Stephen Dent, Teacher, Wilmington, DE. Suggested grades: 9-11. [LI]

Something The Lord Made    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Sometimes In April    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Sommersby     (1993) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sensuality; Director: Jon Amiel.     According to Reel Justice the film is unconvincing and contains legal errors. For films that we recommend relating to the U.S. legal system, see the Subject Matter Index under United States/The Law. [NR]

Son of the Morning Star    (1991) MPAA Rating: PG-13; Director: Mike Robe.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

The Son of the Sheik    (1926) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: George Fitzmaurice.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Song Of Norway    This film is out-dated. We did have a Learning Guide for this movie but took it off because we felt that the film was not usable.

A Song to Remember     (1945) No MPAA Rating; Director: Charles Vidor.     This purports to be a biography of Frederic Chopin, the great Polish composer. It is historically way off the mark in almost every respect. Try "Amadeus" (about Mozart) or any one of the Composers' Specials. [NR] (JAF)

The Songcatcher    (2000) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sexual content and an intense scene of childbirth; Director: Maggie Greenwald.     This film is about the discovery of English ballads in a pure form in the mountains of Appalachia. It shows beautiful scenes of the mountains and beautiful renditions of the ballads. The movie is also about prejudice against lesbians and contains two scenes of lesbian lovemaking shown in a positive light. Many parents would find these scenes acceptable for their children to watch, but many would not. [PD] (JAF)

Sons of the Desert    (1933) No MPAA Rating; Director: William A. Seiter.    This film is ranked #96 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006).

Sophie's Choice    (1982) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Alan Pakula.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Soul of the Game    (1996) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for language and brief sensuality; Director: Kevin Rodney Sullivan.    Suggested by a TWM User.

Soul Surfer    (2011) MPAA Rating: PG for an intense accident sequence and some thematic material; Director: Sean McNamara.     This is a rendition of the true story of Bethany Hamilton a competitive Hawaiian surfer who lost her arm to a shark bite. With the support of her family and her Christian religious community, Ms. Hamilton quickly recovers from the trauma and resumes competitive surfing. The movie stresses Ms. Hamilton's Christian faith, which it appears is true to life. The film soft pedals all of the trying times and hard work in rehabilitation that Ms. Hamilton must have endured and the very real possibility that someone faced with such a traumatic injury will take years to recover. It assumes that the only way is the right way that easily leads to the shining moment of triumph over adversity. Otherwise, its an entertaining and worthwhile film with special relevance for Christian households. [LI] (JAF, 2014)

Sounder    (1972) MPAA Rating: G; Director: Martin Ritt.    suggested by a teacher for grades: 6-9. [LI]

The Sound Of Music    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

South Pacific    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Space Cowboys     (2000) MPAA Rating: PG-13; Director: Clint Eastwood.     We could find no substance that we could use to make this film useful for teaching. Try movies about the real thing, see "Apollo 13" and "The Right Stuff". [ITO] (JAF)

The Spanish Prisoner     (1997); MPAA Rating: PG for thematic elements including tension, some violent images and brief language; Director: David Mamet.     A well done thriller without excessive violence, but no real curriculum related content. [ITO] (JAF)

Spartacus    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Spellbound    (2002) MPAA Rating: G; Director: Jeffrey Blitz.    See the entry for this film in Reading in the Reel World: Teaching Documentaries and Other Nonfiction Texts by John Golden, National Council of Teachers of English, 2006. (JAF & DEF)

The Amazing Spiderman    (2012) MPAA Rating: PG-13; Director: Marc Webb.    This is an entertaining mo ie with no real content that we can see that would justify its use in a classroom. It would be a waste of time to show this movie to a class. If a teacher wants a reward film, pick one of substance from the hundreds of films listed on this site. [NR] (JAF)

The Spirit of St. Louis    (1957) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Billy Wilder.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

The Spitfire Grill    (19996) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for thematic elements; Director: Lee David Zlotoff.    Suggested by a TWM User.

Springfield Rifle    (1952) No MPAA Rating; Director: Andre De Toth.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Squanto: A Warrior's Tale    (1994) MPAA Rating: PG for action violence; Director: Xavier Koller.    "This film has many purposes for usage. It is relative to a middle school history/social studies class in defining the establishment of Plymouth. A high school class could use the film to discuss the implications of freedom, diversity, and the foundations of America. I plan to utilize the film in an alternative school mental health group to discuss bullying, respect, trust, responsibility, loyalty, anger, character development. The history teacher in our school can integrate lessons on pilgrims, Native American culture, etc." Kimberly Phipps, Teacher/Counselor, Portsmouth, OH. Suggested 6-12. [LI]

St. Elmo's Fire    (1985) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Joel Schumacher.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

St. Louis Blues    (1929) No MPAA Rating; Director: Dudley Murphy.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Stagecoach    (1939) No MPAA Rating; Director: John Ford.    This film is ranked #63 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film. See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

The Stages of Labor (by Injoy Videos - 800.326.2082)     (2006) No MPAA Rating     This film shows a birth in both animated and filmed situations. A teacher reports that "the animation of the baby is great."

Stalin    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Stalingrad    (1993) No MPAA Rating; Director: Joseph Vilsmaier.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

The Stalking Moon    (1969) MPAA Rating: G; Director: Robert Mulligan.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Stand And Deliver    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Stand By Me    (1986) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Rob Reiner.    suggested by a teacher for grades 9-12.

Stanley and Iris    (1990) MPAA Rating: PG-13; Director: Martin Ritt.    Suggested by a TWM User. See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

The Star Chamber     (1983) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Peter Hyams.     According to Reel Justice this is not an accurate portrayal. For films that we recommend relating to the U.S. legal system, see the Subject Matter Index under United States/The Law. [NR] (JAF)

A Star Is Born    (1954) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: George Cukor.    This film is ranked #7 on the American Film Institute's List of the Greatest Movie Musicals of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Star Theatre    (1901) No MPAA Rating; Director: Frederick S. Armitage.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Star Trek    A Snippet Lesson Plan has been prepared for this movie relating to black holes.

Stargate    (1994) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sci-fi action violence; Director: Roland Emmerich.    "Stargate includes realistic modern scientific fact and a historically accurate plot line. It explains much in our history and helps to show what our armed forces are doing in their top secret facilities." Alex Lowe. Suggested grades: 9-12.

Starting Out in the Evening    (2007) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sexual content, language and brief nudity; Director: Andrew Wagner.    This is a film that might be interesting to mature adults. It is about aging and the ending of a creative life. In this movie, Frank Langella plays an author in his late sixties or early 70s who wants to finish his last book, but he is running out of health and creativity. A female graduate student, younger than his daughter, is writing an article on the author and wants to make his novels popular again. They start a brief, troubled romance. The acting by Langella, Lauren Ambrose, Lili Taylor, and Adrien Lester is excellent. The problem is that the screenplay has no real climax. This story is ultimately about the slow slide to incapacity and death. Hard to make this a movie that would glue you to your seat but, watching it is an interesting experience for anyone over the age of 55 who is at the top of slide looking down. [NR] (JAF & DEF, 2007)

Star Trek    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Star Wars    (1977) MPAA Rating: PG for sci-fi violence and brief mild language; Director: George Lucas.    This film is ranked #15 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film. "I would like to see development of a teaching guide linking the Star Wars saga with mythical heroic tales. Links can be made to other films using the same archetypal pattern. Or perhaps a teaching guide could be written presenting one or several of the episodes in this light." Catherine Hoyt, Teacher, Lee, NH. Suggested grades: 8-12. This sounds like a great idea. We'll get to it, someday. There is a discussion of this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription. [LI] (JAF & DEF)

Stateside     (2004) MPAA: Rated R for language, some sexuality/nudity and underage drinking; Director: Reverge Anselmo.     The sex is premarital without a long history and the slow development of a strong relationship. The nudity is from scenes with nude dancers in the bars surrounding the Paris Island training camp. This film tells the story of a rich kid who joins the Marines to avoid a jail sentence for driving while intoxicated and causing an accident that severely injured several people. He falls in love with a schizophrenic former actress. We couldn't see a way to make this film into a learning experience. [NR] (JAF)

Staying Alive    (1983) MPAA Rating: PG; Directed, Produced, and Written by: Sylvester Stallone.     Mr. Stallone reportedly received $500,000 from a tobacco company in return for his agreement to use tobacco products during five of his movies. We are never going to pay money to watch any of his movies again. This is disgusting and before showing any Stallone film to a child, this information should be disclosed.

Steamboat Willie    (1928) No MPAA Rating; Directors: Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

The Steel Helmet    (1951) No MPAA Rating; Director: Samuel Fuller.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Steel Magnolias    (1989) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: Herbert Ross.    Suggested by a TWM User. See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription. [LI]

Stella    (1989) MPAA Rating: PG-13; Director: John Erman.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Step Up, Revolution    (2012) MPAA Rating: PG-13; Director: Scott Speer.    This movie is about a dance mob which films its impromptu public events to put on the Internet as part of a competition to see which site gets the most page views. The dancers turn to protest when their neighborhood is scheduled to be bulldozed to make way for a luxury tourist development. It's an entertaining film with minimal violence and great dancing. However, we couldn't find sufficient teaching opportunities to justify a Learning Guide. [ITO] (JAF & DEF, 2013)

The Sting    (1973) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: George Roy Hill.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Stop-Loss    (2008) MPAA Rating: R for graphic violence and pervasive language. (Re-rating; originally also some strong sexuality); Director: Kimberly Peirce.     Interesting material. The film moves slowly and we believe it will not keep students' interests. [NR] (DEF, 2008)

Stormy Weather    (1943) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: Andrew L. Stone.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

The Story Of David    (1976) MPAA Rating: PG; Director: David Lowell Rich and Alex Segal.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

The Story of Louis Pasteur    (1935) No MPAA Rating; Director: Robert Wise.    "This film shows perseverance in the face of adversity." Tauna Davis, Teacher, Hamlin, WV. Suggested grades: 5-12. [LI]

Stranger in the Family    (1991) No MPAA Rating; Director: Donald Wrye.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Stranger Than Paradise    (1984) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Jim Jarmusch.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Strategic Air Command    (1955) No MPAA Rating; Director: Anthony Mann.    See the section on this movie in History Goes to the Movies.

Strauss: The King of Three-Quarter Time    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Streetcar Named Desire     (1951); No MPAA Rating; Director: Elia Kazan.     This film is ranked #45 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film. It is a classic film but not appropriate for young adolescents. It shows domestic violence as being acceptable, as well as some very emotionally sick people. This is a great work of art and a great performance by Marlon Brando, but for very mature children or adults. It would be suitable perhaps for drama classes in grades 11 and 12 but the acting style of Vivien Leigh, who won an Academy Award for her portrayal of Blanche, is out of date and will not be accepted by today's students. For another Tennessee Williams play, see The Glass Menagerie. For a charming film in which Christopher Walken portrays an actor playing Stanley Kowalski in a community theater version of "A Streetcar Named Desire", see Who Am I this Time?. [PD] and [LI] for 11th and 12th grades.

Strictly Ballroom    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

The Strong Man    (1926) No MPAA Rating; Director: Frank Capra.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Stuart Little 3: Call of the Wild    (2005) MPAA Rating: G; Director: Audu Paden.    This film has decent lessons about perseverance, friendship, and family bonds. However, it lacks the charm of the first two films in the series. This is the first "Stuart Little" movie not to employ live action, opting instead for cheap-looking animation. "Stuart Little 3" suffers from a number of problems, including a slow story line. Most disappointingly the cartoon version of Stuart Little, who in the live action movies is absolutely adorable, has a menacing, shark-like grin. He looks more like a rat than a sweet little mouse-brother! There are some negative racial stereotypes involved with the "black" raccoon. [NR] (LH)

Sullivan's Travels    (1941) No MPAA Rating; Director: Preston Sturges.    This film is ranked #39 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Funniest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film. See the section on this movie in Past Imperfect.

The Summer of '42    (1971) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Robert Mulligan.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.

Summer Stock    (1950) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: Charles Walters.     This movie is out of date and you have to be a real Judy Garland or Gene Kelly addict to like it. It is remarkable only for Gene Kelly's incredible dancing. He does a number in a barn with newspaper on the floor that you have to see to believe. It's one of the most creative dance sequences on film. [NR] (JAF and DEF, 2008)

Sunrise Over Tiananmen Square     (1998) No MPAA Rating; Directors: Donald McWilliams, Shui-Bo Wang     Nominated for an Academy Award in 1999 as "Best Documentary, Short Subjects" this film tells the story of the writer/director and his disillusionment with the Communist government. The film is a little slow but otherwise interesting. NR (2009, JAF)

Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans    (1927) No MPAA Rating; Director: F.W. Murnau.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Sunset Boulevard    (1950) No MPAA Rating; Director: Billy Wilder.    This film is ranked #12 on the American Film Institute's List of the 100 Greatest American Movies of All Time (2006). This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film. A teacher who is an expert at using film in the classroom has developed a way to use scenes from this movie for certain activities. See Reading in the Dark, by John Golden, 2001, National Council of Teachers of English. [LI]

Sunshine    (2007) MPAA Rating: R for violent content and language; Director: Danny Boyle.     This is a science fiction murder mystery with interesting special effects and a fascinating visual palette. Some people love it and some people hate it. We couldn't figure out a way to make it into a teaching tool. [NR] (JAF & DEF)

Sunshine     (1999) MPAA Rating: R for strong sexuality, and for violence, language and nudity; Director: István Szabò.     This film is an excellent portrayal of Jewish family life in Hungary 1800s - 1970s. It appears to be reasonably accurate although we have not researched it. However, the R rating is appropriate. It is very long. Adults interested in the historical era covered by the movie will enjoy it. [NA] (JAF)

Super Size Me    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Suspect     (1987) MPAA Rating: R; Director: Peter Yates.     According to Reel Justice the plot is unrealistic. For films that we recommend relating to the U.S. legal system, see the Subject Matter Index under United States/The Law [NR]

Swan Lake    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street    (2007) MPAA Rating: R for graphic bloody violence; Director: Tim Burton.    Many people find this film to be excessively violent. [NR]

Sweet and Lowdown    (1999) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sexual content and some substance abuse. Director: Woody Allen.     This film is a fascinating fictionalization of the life of Emmet Ray who was, apparently, the greatest American Jazz guitarist of the 1930s and 40s. However, Ray was also a pimp, a kleptomaniac and a real "low down" guy. He made few recordings and, as the film admits, it is impossible to distinguish between fact and fiction in learning about his life. The film is very interesting. [ITO, PD] (JAF)

Sweet Bird of Youth     (1989) No MPAA Rating; Director: Nicholas Roeg.     The movie shows drug abuse, alcohol abuse and has sexually mature themes. [PD] (JAF)

Sweet Smell of Success    (1957) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: Alexander Mackendrick.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

Swing Kids    (1993) MPAA Rating: PG-13 for violence and some language; Director: Thomas Carter.    Many teachers have recommended this film. "'Swing Kids' is a great movie to illustrate several concepts: propaganda, the HJ (the Nazi version of boy scouts who eventually become officers of the SS), and WWII from a European point of view. The boys are all college friends who love American swing music, which is banned by the Reich because of its ties to Jewish and African-American musicians. They attend covert dances where swing music is played and danced to. Noah Wylie plays a convincing former friend-turned-HJ officer who lulls two of the swing kids into their way of thinking... for a while, anyway. The music is awesome, the propaganda authentic, and the tactics eye-opening. A wonderful movie about the Holocaust, despite some cursing and a scene in which the boys relieve themselves on a poster of Hitler after a night of swing dancing." Suzanne Funk, Teacher, Indianapolis, IN. Suggested grades: 7-12. We'll do a Guide on this when we can get to it. [LI] (JAF & DEF)

Swing Time    (1936) MPAA Rating: Approved; Director: George Stevens.     This film is listed in the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress as a "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" film.

The Swiss Family Robinson    A Learning Guide has been prepared for this movie.

Sword of Gideon     (1986) No MPAA Rating; Director: Michael Anderson, Sr.     The movie is meager on curriculum related content and contains excessive violence. [ITO] (JAF) 1995.

Sybil    (1976) No MPAA Rating; Director: Daniel Petrie.    See the section on this movie in The Motion Picture Prescription.



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