Parents' Guide to

Death of a Salesman

By Randy White, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

A classic American tragedy.

Movie PG 1985 150 minutes
Death of a Salesman Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 1 parent review

age 14+
This is an amazing and powerful rendering of one of the greatest 20th century American plays. I am shocked at the shallow review that mentions the "misguided morals" of the characters. That misses the point entirely. The play and movie offer important questions about the materialistic values of our society. What does success mean to most people? what should it mean? If this family is devoid of moral values, what is the root of that? What is the meaning of Willy's struggle? Linda's fidelity despite Willy's failure? Biff and Hp's failure to take responsibility for themselves? This film offers great fodder for a thinking family's thoughtful discussion--especially as teens strive to make important decisions about their futures. What does success mean to ME? What do I need to do to be successful? What happens if my dreams don't come true exactly as I had planned?
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1):
Kids say (1):

Dustin Hoffman leads an accomplished cast in this faithful rendering of Arthur Miller's play about a mediocre man whose life is unraveling around him. Shot on studio sets, the production looks stark and some may find it hard to follow, but the fine performances make it captivating. Hoffman gives a quiet but mesmerizing performance, never succumbing to the easy choice of making Willy just angry or confused. Instead, he works hard to restore dignity to the character. Hoffman's scenes with the equally brilliant John Malkovich are the strongest feature of the movie.

Teens and adults will become lost in this American tragedy. However, Loman is a remnant of another age, and it may take some effort for kids to identify with him. Still, this is a remarkably faithful adaptation of the 1984 Broadway version, and teens who have any interest in theater -- or need to read the play for school -- will greatly enjoy it.

Movie Details

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