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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The film is somewhat bleak, but if there's one message, it's this: What goes around comes around.
Positive Role Models
Ginger is a pragmatist and a survivor. And although her sister hasn't always been nice to her, she still opens her arms to her. But Jasmine defines herself by her position on the social (and financial ladder), and doesn't seem to understand that the world doesn't live nearly as well as she does. Characters don't readily empathize with one another, and they sometimes sabotage each other, not to mention themselves.
Violence & Scariness
Loud fights between couples, one of which culminates in a woman getting out of a car abruptly (almost while it's still moving). A man screams at a woman's face in anger, roughly grabbing her. One character is very angry, bordering on abusive.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some kissing and groping, plus allusions to sex, but viewers don't actually see much.
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Language includes a couple of uses of "f--k," plus "s--t," "p---y," "a--hole," "hell," "crap," "damn," "goddamn," "Jesus" (as an exclamation), and more.
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Products & Purchases
Brands/products associated with affluence are used to denote someone's "high class" stature: Louis Vuitton, Fendi, Hermes, Polo, and the like.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A woman pops prescription pills and chases them with vodka or any other liquor every chance she can get. (She's clearly developing a drinking and pill-popping problem.) Social drinking at parties.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Blue Jasmine is a Woody Allen-directed dramedy with themes that may be too mature for tweens and younger. The protagonist is mentally unstable and is falling apart right before viewers' eyes. Characters don't readily empathize with one another, and they sometimes sabotage each other, not to mention themselves. There's lots of drinking and pill-popping -- the main character, Jasmine (aka Jeanette), relies on hard liquor and prescription medication to get through the day. Another character is very angry, bordering on abusive, and there's some strong language ("f--k," "s--t," "a--hole," etc.). To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Woody Allen‘s been steadily regaining momentum since 2005's Match Point; now, it feels like we have him back for good, armed with incisive observations served on a bed of wit and insight. He knows there's plenty to mine in that particular moment of our recent history where it seemed the poor got poorer and the rich got richer until they were caught. In Blanchett, he has an excellent partner. Her chic, pampered Jasmine brings Tennessee Williams' Blanche DuBois to Bernie Madoff's era, ripping at her once beautifully tailored seams. It's a discomfiting sight watching an elegant woman crack up, especially juxtaposed against Hawkins' earthy, practical Ginger, who may always be choosing losers but has both eyes open while doing so. In Allen's movies, people almost always get their comeuppance. Blanchett's triumph is how she still makes us feel sorry for Jasmine even if we don't like her very much.
A minor complaint: Scenes filmed in New York have that specificity that Allen movies always do; but when Blue Jasmine switches to San Francisco, a certain fuzziness sets in despite the appearance of the Golden Gate Bridge and other City by the Bay bonafides. It might as well have been set in Seattle or Chicago. Still, we're glad to see the director in fine form, wherever he chooses to go. For movies like this, we'll follow him anywhere.
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.