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Parents' Guide to

Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore

By Andrea Beach, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Gritty '70s dramedy has some violence, strong language.

Movie PG 1974 112 minutes
Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore Poster Image

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Is It Any Good?

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Kids say (2 ):

Ellen Burstyn won a Best Actress Oscar for her performance in this movie, and it's solid work; unfortunately, a fantastic cast and a too-rare female protagonist are the best this movie has to offer. A number of scenes either don't make sense or aren't effective at what they're meant to convey. Several cuts lead to a new scene that doesn't logically follow or flow from what came before. The story doesn't end; the movie just stops at what feels like a random moment in Alice's life. Scorsese's camera work, with lots of movement and bumpy hand-held shots, reminds the viewer that they're watching a movie rather than mirroring Alice's feelings about her life and her place in the world.

In its time, 1974, it was an important movie not just because it had a woman protagonist, but also because it took such an in-depth look at Alice's life, her setbacks and struggles, as well as her hopes for herself and her son. But now it's unlikely to hold the interest of an audience that doesn't remember or thoroughly understand how women's roles in society were changing in those years, which is really key to understanding Alice and her struggles. That being said, aspiring actors and fans of the craft will definitely feel like they got a master class from it.

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