Parents' Guide to

Calendar Girls

By Beth Pratt, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Charming, feel-good flick. Not much kid appeal.

Movie PG-13 2003 108 minutes
Calendar Girls Poster Image

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: Not yet rated
Kids say: Not yet rated

There's so much for adults to enjoy here. The performances by Helen Mirren as Chris and Julie Waters as Annie are both hilarious and inspiring, and the theme that older women are still beautiful made several movie-goers of a certain age stand up and cheer. While the movie certainly plays up the obviously funny moments (the women's nervousness as they prepare to strip, for example), it also focuses on the evolving nature of the women's friendship as they share this experience together.

So what's in it for kids? Although teens may find the friendship theme appealing, there's not much else for them here. Certainly, the idea of women their mother or grandmother's age stripping down will horrify them --i n fact, the character they're most likely to identify with is that of Chris's teen-age son, Jem, who finds his mother's own sexuality too much to handle. Chris's increased fame leads to Jem's drinking and attempts to smoke pot. When he is arrested, Chris is upset but so caught up in her own affairs that she never realizes that this is her son's way of getting her attention. It's only when her friend Annie suggests she "find out why" he got in trouble does Chris realize she hasn't been the most present parent. Unfortunately, the movie doesn't fully develop this storyline -- we never see Chris sit down and have a talk with her son about what she is doing and why she is doing it. We later hear of a conversation Chris's husband has with him in which he tells him not to be ashamed, but it would have been better if we had actually witnessed this talk. If you watch with your teen, you might want to discuss how Chris and her son could have handled this situation better.

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