Parents' Guide to

Saint Judy

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

Emotionally powerful biopic about crusading attorney.

Movie PG-13 2019 106 minutes
Saint Judy Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 9+

Excellent Movie, to complicated for young viewers

There was some mild violence in the film, and infrequent strong language. The violence and the language aren’t really a big problem as they are infrequent, but it’s also about understanding the film. It’s not very complicated but older viewers will be more interested in watching the film.
age 13+

Great movie, but not easy

Includes some graphic depictions of violence and rape. It's an important movie but not for the really young ones

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (2 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Honest and emotionally powerful without resorting to over-the-top sentimentality, this biopic brings the story of a little-known heroine to vivid life. The beats of Wood's story will ring familiar to anyone who's seen a "triumph of the underdog" story before: An outsider struggles against a seemingly immovable obstacle despite setbacks and ultimately wins the legal case / catches the ball during the Big Game / becomes a star. But the care that Saint Judy takes with the details of its subject's life makes it rise above the crowd. For one thing, the movie takes its time telling the story of the case that started Wood on her life's work. We see her making visit after visit to detention centers, sitting up late into the night poring over paperwork, presenting the case to disinterested official after disinterested official. Legal justice never comes quickly -- and this movie's decision to honor Wood's strenuous effort is realistic and adds to the power of her victory.

Saint Judy is also honest about the toll that Wood's work took on her personal life. We see Wood's young son eating a TV dinner alone at home, waiting in the back seat of his mom's car while she drops in on a reluctant client, and, finally, moving in with his father (Peter Krause). Wood, meanwhile, is sleeping at the office, grabbing a few bites of food when she can, and working on, as the movie tells us at one point, 237 cases at once. Her work doesn't cost her a relationship with her son -- he shows up for the inevitable happy ending -- but it does cost her his full-time custody. Most movies wouldn't tell that part of a working mom's life story. But, ironically, that truthfulness makes Wood even more admirable and the film's messages more inspirational. She's not an icon or a figurehead. She's a real, imperfect woman who saw something wrong and worked hard to help. As positive messages go, viewers could do far, far worse.

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