Parents' Guide to

Boston Strangler

By Jennifer Green, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

True story-inspired thriller has violence, language, sexism.

Movie R 2023 112 minutes
Boston Strangler: Inspired by a true story movie poster: Keira Knightley talks on an old-fashioned land line..

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 1 parent review

age 13+

These Women Fought against wrong !

I liked how the movie really showed someone speaking out against the wrong. However, because of the violence in this movie I recommend that any kid below 16 years old should not watch this movie.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

She Said meets Spotlight in this moody period thriller about two women who broke ground as investigative reporters in the early 1960s. Boston Strangler features intelligent performances and some accurate rendering of mid-century gender inequality. Its sets and studied wardrobe impressively capture the period. The mood -- of the times, and of the heaviness of fear that descended on the city -- is reinforced in the film's bluish-brownish hues. A lot has changed in the roughly half-century between this and She Said's time period, but both films address the layers of barriers and even harassment so many women have had and continue to face in their professional careers.

Strangler captures these realities via the McLaughlins' (overly predictable) marital erosion as well as in micro-jabs and slights the main characters face as women reporting on a crime story. In one telling scene, McLaughlin says she does half of what she actually wants to do, but still feels like she's shortchanging everyone. Knightley is in practically every scene of the film, so more backstory on her character would have been valuable. She and confidante Coon play their roles perceptively, balancing ambition with patience, resolve, and a healthy dose of pragmatism that matches the limitations of their era. Cooper and Nivola are also well-cast as the gruff editor and the sympathetic detective, respectively.

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