A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
People can change. Therapy can help. Parents make mistakes. It's important to forgive. Don't live in sadness. Surviving is different from living.
Positive Role Models
Young adults try to figure their lives out, coming to terms with their childhoods and family trauma, and finding careers for themselves. Hardin is stuck in a negative cycle but emerges thanks to therapy. Tessa has to remove herself from an unhealthy relationship and set out on her own.
Characters are British and American. Most main characters are White, a few are Black. A family member experienced homelessness, and characters live with alcoholism and substance use disorders. A character describes the benefits of group therapy.
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Violence & Scariness
Fights break out, a character has flashbacks to being pushed around by his stepdad as a little boy and remembers his mom getting beaten, a man sets a house on fire, a woman finds a family member dead of a drug overdose and experiences grief.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Sex scenes are explicit but have no nudity; characters strip down to underwear. The main couple has sex in different places and talks about "f--king," "wanting" each other, showing "self-control," and having "happy, consensual sex" full of "love and trust." There's discussion of affairs, intimacy, and people being "hot" or a "ten."
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Lots of use of "f--k" and "s--t" as well as "bulls—t," "hell," "bitch," "prick," "Jesus Christ," and "God."
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Products & Purchases
BMW, Uber, Volvo, NYU.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adults have alcohol and drug abuse problems. A character is found dead from a drug overdose. Characters drink in excess. People smoke. There's mention of being "high 24/7."
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that After Ever Happy is another entry in the series based on the cult One Direction fan fiction published by author Anna Todd on Wattpad and later as a book series. As in other installments, this film stars two young adults deep in a passionate love affair whose family lives keep giving them grief. Characters abuse alcohol and drugs, they smoke, and one dies of a drug overdose. A character deals with the realization that the man he thought was his father isn't. Sex scenes are explicit but have no nudity, and there's some sexy talk. Language includes lots of use of "f--k," "s--t," as well as "bulls--t," "hell," "bitch," and "prick." There are messages of forgiving oneself and others for past mistakes, and the importance in relationships of both individuals being in a healthy space. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
At this rate, the After series could go on with its relentless cycle of break-ups and make-ups for another 20 years. Would fans ever tire of Tessa and Hardin? Just when you've given up -- or Tessa has, like in After Ever Happy -- Hardin redeems himself again. Though it feels repetitive and increasingly difficult to sympathize with their clearly unhealthy relationship, there's always just enough in each film to keep you watching. And once again, this entry ends with a "To be continued." The series is as melodramatic and unbelievable as a soap opera, and it's likely just as addictive for its diehard fans.
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.