Baggage Claim

  • Review Date: September 25, 2013
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Romance
  • Release Year: 2013
  • Running Time: 96 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Predictable romcom sends iffy messages about love, marriage.
  • Review Date: September 25, 2013
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Romance
  • Release Year: 2013
  • Running Time: 96 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

On the one hand, there's a positive message about marriage being more than just a wedding day. William (whose parents were married for 40 years) tells Montana (whose mother has been married five times) that the "magic isn't in getting married, it's in staying married"). On the other hand, Montana seems desperate to be "anybody's woman," and her entire 30-day plan seems selfish in order not to be one-upped by her engaged baby sister. Her desire to be married in order to be thought of as "a lady" -- and her mom's message that being a woman means being married with kids -- isn't exactly empowering for young women. But Montana does eventually learn that love and marriage should be based on friendship and trust, not an arbitrary timeline.

Positive role models

William is an unconditional friend to Montana, even though she takes him for granted. Sam and Gail really want Montana to find love and are willing to put their jobs (and their spare time) on the line to help her find it (though, on the other hand, their characters are pretty stereotypical). Quinton, of all of Montana's suitors, is honest and kind about his intentions and hopes for their romantic future.

Violence

One woman threatens to kill her boyfriend when she believes he's in her apartment with another woman. She starts breaking things and screaming that she's going to beat him (and the other woman). Also some moments of physical comedy (like Mo falling out of a trash can or Sam and Gail play-slapping each other).

Sex

One sex scene (the woman strips down to her bra and panties as her lover takes off his shirt and pants on the bed), one scene in which a man is shirtless in a hot tub trying to coax a dressed woman to join him, and a few other kisses. Two people cheat on their partners. Gail refers to sex and her past experiences a lot (for example, she gives Montana a box of cranberry-flavored condoms), and Sam tells her that "everyone knows you like to bone."

Language

Infrequent strong language includes "s--t," "bitch," "a--hole," "damn," "idiot," and "hoochie."

Consumerism

Jimmy Choo shoes, Samsung Galaxy phone, Renaissance Hotel, Tiffany ring, Cartier bracelet.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Montana and other adults drink on the plane and at various dinners and parties. Montana gets drunk at a hotel.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Baggage Claim is a romantic comedy about a flight attendant who follows her exes on flights to see whether they can rekindle their old spark. Although there's only one actual sex scene (no actual nudity, thought the couple strips down to their underwear and gets into bed), there are plenty of references to doing it (i.e. "boning") and getting it on. Some high-end labels and products are featured, and strong language, while infrequent, includes "bitch," "a--hole," and "s--t." The movie's messages about romance and relationships are very mixed, ranging from the positive adage that it's not "getting married" that's important but "staying married" to the iffier ideas that you have to be married and have kids to be a true woman and that a strong woman needs to let her husband "lead."

Parents say

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Kids say

What's the story?

Montana Moore (Paula Patton) is a Baltimore flight attendant who loves her job and her friends but can't seem to find Mister Right. She was taught by her five-times-married mother that, to be a real woman, you have to be married with kids. So, after her college-aged little sister announces her engagement, Montana becomes desperate to have a serious boyfriend/fiance by the night of the rehearsal dinner a month later. Her coworkers, Sam (Adam Brody) and Gail (Jill Scott), hatch a plan to get Montana a man in 30 days: Send all of her exes' names to their airport friends in ticketing, baggage drop-off, and security in order to make sure that Montana can join the former beaus on their flights. She embarks on a whirlwind journey of rediscovering old flames, just to see if one of them really could be "the one" for her.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

As cheesy romantic comedies go, BAGGAGE CLAIM has enough familiar jokes to offer up a pleasant, if forgettable, time at the theater. But the movie's messages can be seen as very antiquated, if not downright offensive to anyone who's ever been happily single for any length of time. The idea that getting a man and a ring to show off is more important than letting love grow organically isn't exactly funny; so, despite her beauty, Montana comes off as pathetic for most of the movie.

Still, Brody and Scott manage to be funny in their cliched roles as the sarcastic gay and buxom/promiscuous flight attendants, respectively. Patton is genuinely a charming performer, as is Derek Luke, who plays her lifelong best friend and long-suffering neighbor, William. And, of course, Djimon Hounsou and Taye Diggs (two of Mo's exes) are always a treat to see on screen. But overall the movie is just too, too obvious to be good. Let's hope David E. Talbert's next comedy has fewer stereotypes about both women and relationships.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether Baggage Claim's relationship advice and messages about women's roles in society and marriage are appropriate for teens. Who is this movie targeted at? How can you tell?

  • Some have criticized this movie for being outdated in its view of love and romance. Do you agree? Parents, talk to your teens about your own values on these subjects.

  • Did you notice any stereotyping in this movie? Why do you think it's so tempting to fall back on known "types" when it comes to certain kind of characters?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:September 27, 2013
DVD release date:February 4, 2014
Cast:Derek Luke, Jill Scott, Paula Patton
Director:David E. Talbert
Studio:Fox Searchlight
Genre:Romance
Topics:Friendship
Run time:96 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:sexual content and some language

This review of Baggage Claim was written by

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Teen, 13 years old Written bydoubleE September 30, 2013
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

Baggage Claim is Funny and Entertaining

First of all I LOVED this movie but it really is for mature audiences since the entire movie revolves around sex and dating. There is one sex scene but nothing graphic is shown and there is some drinking but the movie really isn't for anyone 12 or under... Go see it!
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 14 years old Written byironkid21 November 12, 2013
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

Lame rom com has its moments, like funny supporting performances from Jill Scott and Adam Brody, but is otherwise a mostly unfunny, bland rom com...

Paula Patton? Jill Scott? Derek Luke? This must be a really funny and entertaining rom com! That's what one would think but it turns out all of this charming cast is wasted in this mostly unfunny, time wasting mess of a rom com. Lets start with, how do I put this...believability! It's just not here! All of Paula Patton's character's supposed "exes" feels like she's just met them or never even met them at all. She just stands around walking with a blank face. The only person it feels like she mildly knew before was Trey Songz's character, mainly because as soon as she goes in his house, she says it looks different. It wouldn't even really matter about logic if Baggage Claim was at least funny and entertaining. But it's not even that funny, except for when Jill Scott and Adam Brody are on screen as Paula Patton's best friends, which are without a doubt, the most redeeming things about the film! And it's not that entertaining, it's actually quite boring. Sure, it's messages about waiting to find the one are really good, Jill Scott and Adam Brody are great, and Tia Mowry's cameo is absolutely hilarious, but otherwise, Baggage Claim is just a bland, mostly unfunny rom com that wastes a charming cast. Clearly they deserve better material than this...
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing

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