Parents' Guide to

Class Rank

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Coming-of-age comedy has likable characters, some drinking.

Movie NR 2018 108 minutes
Class Rank Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 13+

Excellent, off-beat movie for teens and tweens

My HS senior kept saying, "This seems like a Wes Anderson movie!" Indeed it did. If you like that sort of off-beat humor, this is the movie for you. One thing I really liked is the way these extreme, solitary students were not given the stereotypical treatment of bullied underdogs. Their fellow students were respectful and although this may not have been completely realistic, it was refreshing after seeing SO MANY "typical" teen comedies.
age 11+

Lovely film, especially for girls.

My two older kids and I saw this in the Newport Beach film festival, and thoroughly loved it. It's been a long time since we've seen a film that was essentially driven by a 16 year old girl who is clearly the smartest one in the room, and she's also kind and has a wonderful relationship with her mother, played by Kristen Chenoweth. It didn't hurt that the girl is played by Olivia Holt, my kids loved her in 'Kickin it". The two kids in the film decide to run for the school board, so it has a little of the 'we can change the world' to it as well as a sweet romance. One bad word spoken in anger which was a bit shocking, but other than that, this is definitely a family film through and through.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2):
Kids say (3):

This could have been just another generic coming-of-age, high school romcom, but it's surprisingly sweet, honest, and lovable; it feels as fresh and bracing as a brand-new John Hughes movie. It's perhaps fitting, then, that Class Rank is directed by Eric Stoltz, an honorary Brat Packer who starred in the Hughes-written Some Kind of Wonderful. Stoltz and screenwriter Benjamin August (Remember) understand that teens are people too, and even high achievers have their doubts and weaknesses. Thanks to tender, nuanced performances, both Veronica and Bernard rise above potential stereotypes and become human.

At the same time, Class Rank is kind to its adult characters, who are so often made ridiculous in teen movies. Dern, who can easily be either cranky or flat-out evil, becomes a slightly edgy, shuffleboard-obsessed, caring grandpa to Bernard, and it's easy to see why the latter loves him so. Kristin Chenoweth is very funny as Veronica's mother, who works on the Law and Order: Special Victims Unit TV show and uses tidbits from its storylines in her parenting. Also delightful is Kathleen Chalfant as the publisher of the local newspaper. The characters are certainly quirky, but Stoltz gives everything a low-key, relaxed quality, and nothing seems too desperate or obvious; it's all smoothed out into a nice, clean flow. This is a kind movie, with room in its heart for all types.

Movie Details

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