A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Sometimes grownups rely on unconscious biases that lead them astray. Money and shame can make people do bad things. Blaming gets you nowhere.
Positive Role Models
Violet is bright and observant and likes to think outside the box. Kenny is her loyal friend who believes in her. Maddie is a kind older sibling. Harrison regains faith in his father and forgives past transgressions.
The cast is mostly White with a few exceptions. Someone says "man up," and one of the kids says, "That's sexist."
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Violence & Scariness
A cherished artifact is stolen. The perpetrator seems nice but when pressed becomes a bit threatening. Tension mounts as the story reaches its climax. A young mother died years before.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Two teens kiss.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that A Christmas Mystery (not to be confused with a 2014 film of the same title) has all the elements of an engaging family TV holiday movie. Two bright 11-year-olds step up to solve a crime when the grownups in town arrest the wrong person. Language is no more offensive than the word "butt," kids point out the sexism in the phrase "man up," and the mystery's solution includes moments of tension and mild threat. Two teens kiss. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
A Christmas Mystery is a solid, kid-centric holiday movie that empowers children with examples set by Violet, Kenny, Maddie, and Harrison. In their quest to solve a crime, they use reason, logic, deductive powers, and common sense, contrasting with the unimaginative and lazy assumptions of adults that lead to the arrest of an innocent man.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.