An Easy Girl

Movie review by
Andrea Beach, Common Sense Media
An Easy Girl Movie Poster Image
Absorbing French drama has lots of sex, nudity, and alcohol.
  • NR
  • 2020
  • 92 minutes

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

A person has a lot of value. If you understand that and value yourself, you'll have the confidence to make life choices that suit you best and let you hold on to your value. A wealthy and glamorous lifestyle looks really great, but it doesn't mean you won't have problems or feel free to do whatever you want, and there's usually a price to pay. You're better off doing what makes you happy. It's easy to say nothing and hide yourself from others, but in order to learn you have to talk to people.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Naima, who just turned 16, is a good role model for seeing through the glamour of wealth and realizing it's not worth pursuing for its own sake. She learns to appreciate herself for who she is, recognize that she has value, and decides to follow her own path. Cousin Sofia isn't a bad person, but she's coping with grief by shunning emotion and looking only for sensation. She's kind, generous, and smart, but empty inside. Best friend Dodo is a great model of loyalty and forgiveness, showing the value of strong friendship bonds. Two main characters and many minor characters are brown-skinned. Naima's diverse group of school friends are briefly seen. A sex scene shows both partners frequently asking for consent.

Violence

There's only one brief instance of violence but it's horrific. A part of a horror movie in a theater is seen in which a woman has thick metal clips that were embedded in her skull as part of a restraining device pulled out while she's fully awake. Lots of blood dripping while she screams.

Sex

A few sex scenes show simulated oral sex, a man's bare buttocks graphically thrusting, kissing and caressing a woman's bare breasts, slapping, groaning, heavy breathing. A dream shows a woman caressing herself and a hand slowly going down to her crotch. In some shots she's in a bathing suit and others imply nudity without showing any sensitive parts. One female character is frequently seen topless or in sheer clothing without undergarments.

Language

"F--k," "d--kface," "douche," "whore," "ass," "crap," and "bitch" as an affectionate nickname are translated from French.

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Several nightclub scenes show lots of ambient drinking and smoking. Main characters have unspecified drinks without consequences, but some tipsy and drunken behavior is shown. Adults give teens hard liquor and champagne. Teens carry a bottle of wine along a street. Lots of characters regularly smoke cigarettes. A teen rolls his own cigarette. An adult vapes once.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that An Easy Girl is a coming-of-age drama in French with subtitles. Lots of strong sexual content, including simulated oral sex; a graphic shot of a man's nude, thrusting buttocks; a couple of scenes of a woman stroking herself with her hand moving down to her crotch; and a female character who frequently is topless or in sheer clothes with no undergarments. Sex scenes also include kissing, slapping, fondling bare breasts, groaning, and panting. One sex scene also shows good examples of both partners asking for consent. No violence except a brief, horrific, and bloody scene from a horror movie in a theater. Lots of alcohol consumption in nightclubs and with meals. No consequences, but some tipsy and drunken behavior is shown. Strong language in translation includes "f--k" and "d--kface." Most characters smoke cigarettes frequently. A teen rolls his own cigarette and an adult vapes once. Overall messages are positive about knowing your own value and discovering what will make you happy and fulfilled.

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What's the story?

AN EASY GIRL tells the story of Naima (Mina Farid) during the summer when she just turned 16. She lives in Cannes, in the south of France, and her cousin Sofia (Zahia Dehar) arrives from Paris for a visit. Sofia's four years older, and Naima quickly becomes enthralled by Sofia's sophisticated lifestyle. Sofia attracts the attention of an older, wealthy yachtsman (Nuno Lopes), and she and Naima enjoy the luxurious lifestyle he offers. But Naima's got plenty of other stuff going on, too. She's auditioning for a play with her best friend, and she's supposed to intern at a hotel restaurant kitchen this summer. The two worlds pull Naima in opposite directions, and she'll soon have to decide whether to take control of her own life, or go wherever the winds may take her.

Is it any good?

This absorbing movie goes beyond the stereotype of a "sexy French girl discovering herself" movie while still offering just about everything you'd expect from one. Attractive, sophisticated characters, gorgeous scenery, smart people having interesting conversations -- An Easy Girl has all that. But it also stands out because it's not about 16-year-old Naima discovering her sexuality. It's about her discovering her self worth and learning what kinds of things will make her happy in life. Naima doesn't have any romantic relationships or sexual encounters at all. Also unique for going against stereotype is the gorgeous, sexy Sofia. Sofia claims not to be interested in love or emotional attachment; she just wants to enjoy physical sensations and a luxurious lifestyle. But far from just being a sexual object, Sofia is smart, kind, generous, and grieving.

The acting is terrific, and newcomer Mina Farid as Naima holds her own. There's some interesting food for thought about wealth, work, value, friendship, and of course relationships, but instead of exploring anything in any real depth, director Rebecca Zlotowski merely presents the shimmering surface of Naima's 16th summer. Strong sexual content and mature themes make it best for older teens and up.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the strong sexual content in An Easy Girl. Is it too explicit? What about the nudity? How much is OK for teens to see? Why?

  • What about the strong language? Is it realistic? Does it matter if it is?

  • In France teens can buy wine and beer at age 16, and hard alcohol at 18. How do the teens in this movie handle alcohol consumption? Do some research to find out why that might be a good strategy for France, and whether it works to keep alcohol abuse rates low. Would a policy like that work in the U.S., or is 21 an effective way to keep underage drinking and alcohol abuse at a low rate?

Movie details

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For kids who love coming-of-age tales

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