Parents' Guide to

Crazy Heart

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Bridges shines in adult tale of alcohol and country music.

Movie R 2009 112 minutes
Crazy Heart Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 16+

Based on 4 parent reviews

age 16+

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
age 17+

superb performance.......

Brilliant acting by Jeff Bridges and some solid performances by others hold up a movie that has an incoherent, low intensity albeit realistic story. The score of the movie (which is mostly country music) is also pretty good. "Crazy Heart" is not your average motivational movie with strong dialogue and high intensity drama. It follows a sober and a rather unusual romantic story. The story is loosely knit by a few incidents that follow the life of a very talented country musician who is also a raging alcoholic and a chain smoker. On one hand the lack of grandiose drama makes the story more plausible and real but at the same time some may feel that its devoid of depth or intensity. 'Crazy Heart,' which was written by Cooper from the eponymous novel by Thomas Cobb, is perhaps a bit schematic about the up-down-up trajectory of the talented loser, but it manages to be pretty realistic about the degeneration that is terminal alcoholism. Here, however, it's not a slide into hell like Mike Figgis' Leaving Las Vegas. Though only by the skin of his teeth, and with multiple ailments a car crash reveals, Bad is surviving. So when the moment comes and he hits his bottom, he still has the strength to straighten out. Maybe the fast-forward finale is a bit too upbeat, but the memory the movie leaves is, of course, of Bridges with a bottle, a guitar, and a sad sweet song, and of some of the year's best movie acting. Crazy Heart isn't perfect, but I'm willing to go as far to say that Jeff Bridges is. I can get past the imperfections of the storyline and the slight melodramatic feel the last third of the film emanates when the film boasts a cast as good as this. This is a solid film that is a pure delight to watch. And best of all, it nabbed Jeff Bridges a long overdue Oscar win. Brilliant, pure and realistic performance by him, Maggie was good too lovely movie.

This title has:

Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Great messages

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (4):
Kids say (4):

Like a good country song, CRAZY HEART has an appealing, easygoing vibe for most of its running time, despite Bad's severe drinking problem. Likewise, it never puts the audience through the ringer with too much melodrama; each of the plot turns happens very matter-of-factly and organically, as if natural extensions of the characters.

Bridges is the real selling point here. He gives a wonderfully layered performance, full of joy and pain and weariness. Supporters Gyllenhaal, Farrell, and Robert Duvall are terrific as well -- Bridges, Farrell, and Duvall can even be heard doing their own singing. The movie derails in the final stretch as Bad finally embarks on the road to recovery; it's a bit too fast and neat and more than a little proud of itself. But until then, it's a nice little movie.

Movie Details

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