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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Gun violence destroys lives and whole neighborhoods. It's possible to overcome adversity with the help of others and belief in oneself. Redemption is achievable.
Positive Role Models
The young hero begins to find his way back from a life-changing traumatic event; he's loving, ultimately courageous. A flawed character learns value of integrity, compassion, perseverance. A mom, conflicted because of a tragedy, comes to terms with fearfulness.
Violence & Scariness
The few violent sequences (some in flashback) are powerful and disturbing: point-blank gunfire with dire results. Self-destructive outbursts.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Couple seen in bed post-sex.
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Nonstop swearing, obscenities, and slurs, including countless uses of "f--k," "p---y," "s--t," "hell," "butt," "retard," the "N" word." Profanity in rap songs. Fat-shaming.
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Products & Purchases
Harold's Chicken Shack, Champion, Swiffer, Maxima, Adidas, Walmart.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Casual marijuana use. Cigarettes. Beer. Lead character gets drunk.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Beats is a Netflix movie with mature themes about two damaged souls: a teen recovering from a traumatic event and a hapless former music producer in need of redemption. The film is set in the Roseland district of Chicago's South Side with hip-hop music as its cultural canvas. Viewers can expect violent images early in the film -- a point-blank shooting resulting in a tragic, bloody death -- with flashbacks of the incident repeated later. In other action sequences, there are gun threats, fights, and tantrum-induced vandalism. Profanity is part of the fabric of the film and its song lyrics -- countless uses of "f--k," "s--t," "p---y," the "N" word, as well as fat-shaming. Characters casually smoke marijuana, as well as cigarettes. Alcohol is consumed with one instance of drunkenness. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Made with earnestness, care, and complex characters, this film nicely combines familiar themes of coming of age and redemption with a dynamic urban setting to deliver a satisfying story. Television stars Anthony Anderson (Black-ish) and Uzo Aduba (Orange Is the New Black) get a chance to stretch here, and both of them are terrific, as are the featured players. Aduba's role as a grieving and conflicted mom is particularly affecting. Fans of the hip-hop genre will have to decide for themselves whether the music is as good as the characters in Beats and the story say it is.
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.