Dead Poets Society

Movie review by Randy White, Common Sense Media
Dead Poets Society Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 13+

Inspiring, intense story of a teacher and his students.

PG 1989 128 minutes

Parents say

age 14+

Based on 17 reviews

Kids say

age 13+

Based on 38 reviews

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Community Reviews

age 16+

Don’t waste your time.

Meh! Robin Williams is great as always but he was much better ones to watch.
1 person found this helpful.
age 15+

Very underwhelming

I had heard many people really enjoyed this film so I was anticipating something worthwhile. Setting aside my annoyance at the unnecessary nudity, course language, and laughable teen smoking troupe, still the film is a miserable attempt at a thought-provoking picture. From the beginning of the movie the whole premise felt wildly implausible at best and downright cringeworthy at worst. Nothing, substantial felt believable in the film. For me I cannot buy into the premise of a serious film if the story doesn't feel at least somewhat possible. The writing felt shallow and basic, the plot felt obvious from about 30 seconds in, and almost every scene either made me sigh in disappointment or worse roll my eyes as I cringed. Mr. Keats employs teaching methods that are clearly right out of a Hollywood writer's imagination and that are so far off from reality that, as a teacher myself, I felt secondhand embarrassment. The classic troupes used to stereotype the boys in the film felt overdone, lazy, and honestly boring. The plot moves painfully slow, with no real sense of buildup. I found myself constantly asking when the movie was going to get good. The plot advances without any truly convincing reason for the plot to advance, no inspiring reason for the boys to buy what Keats is selling. If I used his methods on my students I would be an absolute laughing stock. My favorite part was 90 minutes in when I decided to cut my losses and to turn it off without finishing. There are much better stories out there with more clever writing and a far more important story. Don't bother.

Movie Details

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