Aquamarine

  • Review Date: June 11, 2006
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2006
  • Running Time: 109 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Girls and a mermaid learn about love. Charming.
  • Review Date: June 11, 2006
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2006
  • Running Time: 109 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Excellent "message" at film's end: Girls' friendship and love are more intimate, trusting, and lasting than romance.

Violence

Some stormy imagery (indicating mermaid's father's anger).

Sex

Minor kissing, flirting, worries about a date for the big party; mermaid wants to discover "true love" with human boy.

Language

Occasional use of mild language ("bitch").

Consumerism

Morton salt, teen dating magazines.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the film concerns a mermaid's search for "love" among humans, and the comedy involves teenaged flirting, sexual tensions, and giddy girl behavior. Mermaid wears tight outfits, audacious girls appear in bikinis, and the "good girls" dress like tomboys. Girls read teen magazines about how to attract boys, the favorite boy is objectified in slow motion (reference to typical objectification of girls). Characters discuss sex and bodies (breasts, implants) and use mild profanity. Tense family situations include discussion of a girl's parents' drowning, another girl's parents' divorce, and an upcoming move, threatening to split up the girls' friendship. Very brief scare scene during a rainstorm.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

AQUAMARINE focuses on two smart, mostly sensible 13-year-olds at the end of their last summer together. Claire (Emma Roberts), who lives at a small Florida resort with her grandparents, and Hailey (pop singer Joanna \"JoJo\" Levesque) are discovering the joys of boys, or at least the idea of boys. They've read the magazines and memorized the instructions on how to attract a boy, but they're also daunted by their rivals, slightly older girls in makeup and bikinis. They're also distracted by two major developments: one, Hailey's mother has a new job in Australia, which means the girls will be split up at summer's end. And two, they find a mermaid in a swimming pool. This would be Aquamarine (Sara Paxton), running away from an arranged marriage. Determined to prove the existence of love (and so, avoid her father's plans), Aquamarine pursues Raymond (Jake McDorman, who shows a gift for physical comedy and making faces), the very pretty lifeguard on whom Hailey has a crush. The girls and mermaid cut a deal: if, in three days, Aqua can get Ray to say he loves her, she avoids a loveless wedding and will grant the girls a wish.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The movie adapts mermaid rules from Splash (Aqua can grow legs during the day, but her fishtail comes back at sundown or if her legs get wet), in order to set up absurd situations (as Aqua and Ray are flirting, she has to run away as soon as the sun turns orange). As well, Aqua's "otherness" is marked by her naïve childishness, combined with physical oddities (fingernails that change color to show her emotions, live starfish she wears as earrings and who whisper in her ear that she's "smart" and "beautiful"), and a sensual maturity (Ray is quite smitten as soon as he sees her, though perplexed by her strange behavior).

True, the film leans too heavily on its "villain," the wealthy Cecilia (Arielle Kebble), to amp up the dramatic tension (as she competes for Ray's attention by lying and cheating). And true, Aqua is not so charming as the human girls, especially Roberts as Claire, who is convincing and adorable. But for all the narrative awkwardness and abuses heaped on Cecilia, the film comes up with a terrific ending, underlining the importance of the girls' friendship (including their new friendship with Aqua) over romance.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the girls' friendship. How do Claire and Hailey help each other cope with extraordinary trauma and ordinary "growing pains"? How does their relationship change as they compete for boys' attention? How do they deal with Hailey's imminent move to Australia?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:March 3, 2006
DVD release date:June 13, 2006
Cast:Arielle Kebbel, Emma Roberts, Sara Paxton
Director:Elizabeth Allen
Studio:Twentieth Century Fox
Genre:Comedy
Topics:Friendship
Run time:109 minutes
MPAA rating:PG
MPAA explanation:mild language and sensuality.

This review of Aquamarine was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 8 years old December 31, 2009
Kid, 10 years old May 2, 2011
AGE
9
QUALITY
 

Love is in the air

The movie is great! its all about a mermaid who wants to find love! there is nothing wrong but it should be 9 and up because younger kids may not understand!
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 13 years old Written bytangled August 14, 2010
AGE
9
QUALITY
 
Its OK. The only bad things in it i can think of are the "B Word" and that mermaids don't wear anything "up top" and Aquas hair covers her chest. Some younger kids may not get the teenage dating.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing

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