A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The movie is about caring: Benny cares for Joon as her brother, but also as her only family member. Sam cares for Joon, first as a housekeeper and then as a boyfriend. Ruthie cares for everyone in her way, giving tapioca and kindness when it's asked for.
Positive Role Models
Though Benny is gruff and sometimes a bully, he sets up his life to care for his mentally ill sister. Joon, in her own right, is a free spirit, whose creative energy is expressed everywhere in their home. Sam has special talents, which Benny admires. All of the characters are somehow damaged, but this makes them all the more real.
Violence & Scariness
Benny is a protective big brother, who roughs up Sam when he hears that Sam and Joon are having a relationship.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some steamy kisses and a scene where Joon and Sam are in bed together: no skin is shown, except for their bare calves sticking out of the covers.
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Runs the gamut, from "damn" to "s--t" and one instance of the f-word.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Benny and his friends drink beer when they play poker, though no one is shown being intoxicated. Ruthie offers Benny a beer when they have an awkward moment. Benny later says, "I need a beer."
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the subject of caring for a mentally ill family member is the focal point of this movie. Joon seems "normal," as Sam remarks to Benny, but she has tantrums, pyromaniac moments, and breakdowns. But Joon is also an adult, and she has adult feelings, which lead to romance with Sam. Whether this romance is appropriate or not supplies some of the edge to the plot of the movie. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Johnny Depp earned a Golden Globe nomination for his incredible physical performance in this movie, and viewers will understand why. His takes on old Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton skits are breathtaking, illustrating how gifted Depp is as a comedian. The life-before-Facebook romance provides a hip but unhurried view of romance in the early '90s. And the world that these quirky characters inhabit is not centered on being popular or cool, but rather being true to themselves. Tweens will love seeing Depp play an illiterate oddball before his Jack Sparrow days. Adult Gen-Xers will appreciate the kind of talent and creativity their peers bring to the screen.
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.