Parents' Guide to

Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

Faithful Blume adaptation explores puberty and religion.

Movie PG-13 2023 105 minutes
Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret: Movie Poster: Margaret (Abby Ryder Fortson) stands underneath the movie's title

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 12+

A review for Christian parents

Ok, so a 12 year old would understand this movie and it would probably be quite entertaining. But there are some aspects to the film that make me think it's not the best option. There's a lot of focus on breasts and the size of breasts the young girls have and how they are desperate to increase it. Young girls look at playboy and wonder if they will look like that at 19. 12-year olds play the bottle game and then 2 minutes in the wardrobe game, with kissing. There's talk of a girl being 'felt up' in the back room. I also wasn't a fan of one of the main characters Nancy, a sassy 12 - year old girl. If you're an adult you're probably rolling your eyes now but I wouldn't feel comfortable with my 12 year old getting ideas from the film. There's the whole other aspect of Margaret's mum being Christian and dad being Jewish and how the grandparents on both sides try to make her Jewish/Christian. She goes to visit different churches to pick her religion. There's also a big family argument over that.
age 11+

Great preteen to teen movie and nostalgia movie

It's a great preteen to adult movie. I didn't bring my son or husband as they wouldn't appreciate it as much as I did and as much as my daughter did, so I agree with others that's it's a great mother-daughter film (or a bunch of girlfriends). Margret is an innocent preteen trying to come into puberty and deal with complex adult decisions about moving, gender roles and religion, while navigating new friendships and school. It cares for the preteen heart and shows with change comes other open doors and that the journey is worth the heartache. I laughed. I cried. My daughter and I loved it and it was a great movie to see together. We did see a few men in the theater so the brave will attend. One scene in the movie the male teacher leaves the theater when the girls are watching a movie about their changing bodies and it was cute. Glad to see men evolve and attend. If you haven't had the talk about puberty or sex with your child, you might want to prior seeing the movie with them or right after as these girls are discovering things on scene like periods, bras and anatomy of the penis (from an anatomy book). It also shows Margret getting get dad's Playboy magazine (you don't see anything except the head though). There's a lot about religious differences which Margret is open to trying out many different churches and Temple. The entire time she's praying to God in no particular religion or denomination. I read all Judy Bloom books as a child which I remember thinking were pretty descriptive and the movie captured the moments really well. Loved it.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (11 ):
Kids say (12 ):

Writer-director Kelly Fremon Craig's delightful adaptation of Judy Blume's timeless tale is a nostalgic, relevant look at early adolescence, friendship, spirituality, and parent-child relationships. Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret stays faithful to the classic source material but also freshens it up. The end result is entertaining and appropriate for both lifelong Blume devotees (looking at you, fellow Gen Xers) and a new generation of potential Margaret fans. Fortson is wonderful as Margaret, a curious and kind middle schooler who's just trying to find her way in the world. Kathy Bates is also fabulous as Margaret's brassy, Manhattan-dwelling grandmother, who misses being just blocks away from her beloved granddaughter. McAdams and Safdie have a surprising amount of chemistry as an interfaith couple whose difficult personal experiences led them to intentionally keep their daughter from knowing about religion rather than expose her to both of the faiths they were raised with -- or choose one for her.

Margaret's journey toward self-discovery is joyous, emotional, and funny. Most viewers will be able to relate to elements of the perspectives of the adult and/or the tween characters. Blume readers may find themselves laughing aloud as Margaret and her friends chant "I must, I must, I must increase my bust," or when Margaret gets her first kiss from the class's overly slick crush. Religion and puberty aren't always easy-to-navigate topics, but the movie, like the book, delves candidly into substantive issues without being preachy. The film honors Blume's frank approach to discussing periods, bras, health education, kissing, faith, and more. An ideal pick for parents and tweens/teens -- or for adults who grew up reading the book -- this movie proves that sometimes the right adaptation is worth the wait.

Movie Details

Inclusion information powered by

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.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate