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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
True friendship is vital, but, as one character says, it's rare to find it among adults, so it must be nurtured.
Positive Role Models
Steve and Ben have been best friends since childhood and truly care about other. But they're also dysfunctional together, supporting each other's flaws and enabling self-destructive behavior. They both have to grow up at the same time in order to see both their own issues and the issues in their relationship.
Violence & Scariness
Some bickering between friends and family members. A man upsets a dining table in a fit of pique. One scene shows a man slaughtering a live chicken.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
One character is a reckless womanizer who tries to bed almost anyone, including co-workers, strangers, and grieving widows. He's a regular with prostitutes and often peers out the window at a female neighbor when she's changing clothes. A few scenes show nude women, and one long sequence includes a naked man seen from behind. Also some kissing and suggestions of sexual activity about to happen.
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Frequent profanity, including everything from "f--k," "s--t," and "a--hole" to "tw-t," "bitch," and "d--k."
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Products & Purchases
Some beer brands are shown on camera, including Bud Light.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
The two main characters smoke pot almost constantly, one to self-medicate his mental illness, the other to mask his profound unhappiness. They also drink heavily, everything from beer to whiskey, at home, at bars, at work, wherever.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Are You Here centers on the friendship between two not-so-emotionally healthy guys (Owen Wilson and Zach Galifianakis) who've known each other since childhood. One is immature, constantly stoned, and quick to pursue every woman he sees, while the other is mentally ill and reluctant to address his condition with real treatment. Their friendship is challenged when one inherits a substantial amount of money and it's not clear he can handle his newfound wealth. Expect plenty of marijuana use and drinking, as well as frequent swearing (everything from "f--k" and "s--t" to "bitch" and "a--hole"). Some scenes include nude women, and one long sequence includes a naked man seen from behind. There's also some kissing and suggestions of impending sexual activity. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
ARE YOU HERE, the first movie directed by Mad Men's Matthew Weiner, aims high but falls pretty far down in its efforts to make big statements about too many big topics. There's friendship, addiction, the perils of ignoring mental illness, and inter-sibling issues to explore, not to mention a streak of environmentalism. In short, it's a lofty film that's a sprawling mess.
The one saving grace is the rapport between the two leads, and the story of their characters' deeply committed friendship. The film's take on the two is honest and unflinching. But that's not the case when it comes to the way that relationships with women are rendered. Newly widowed Angela is a flimsily conceived character; Poehler's role as the bitter sister who always wants to tell her disturbed brother off is also skimpy. Eventually, the guys do figure out, in a manner of speaking, their respective paths, but do we care about their journey? Not really.
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.