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Parents' Guide to


By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Mature thriller has interesting characters, some surprises.

Movie R 2017 90 minutes
Detour 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+


Adult action drama showing the darker sides of life experiences in a retro noir film. This movie uses spilt imaging on screen at times depicting the story's events at different periods of time to keep the viewer guessing what comes next and connecting the dots to understand the characters. Although confusing at times, it entertains. Hairpin turns and action sequences are meant to shock the viewer. Subject matter is seeded but trills keep coming. All the characters are convincing, dialogue is good and photography is excellent. Some obvious mistakes occur in the storyline especially the dead body of the step father stuffed in the truck of the Mustang. There is abolutely no way the other characters traveling in the car would not smell the decaying human body, let alone trying to get the another person ( police officer ) into the truck of the car with the dead body. There is no way two persons could even fit into the truck. This is the biggest flaw in the movie story, thusly making it not believable. Here the director and script writer failed. Altering this obvious mistake was so easy, yet ignored, causing me to give it an average rating for what could have been better rating. Movie shows drugs being use, swearing but no sex.

This title has:

Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Is It Any Good?

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

Hardly the first crime movie to play around with timelines (and not always successful at doing so), this thriller gets away with it due to intriguing characters, a snappy pace, and a few surprises. Written and directed by Christopher Smith (Severance, Get Santa), Detour pulls a couple of dirty little tricks that fool the audience, not necessarily in a good way, and it's sometimes confusing. Viewers will have to go back and think twice about what they've seen to make sense of it. Yet the movie is good-natured and colorful and somehow manages to avoid looking and sounding like yet another a fifth-rate Quentin Tarantino rip-off.

Instead, Detour pays tribute to classic movies, especially to another movie called Detour -- from 1946 -- which Harper watches in one scene. And the name "Harper" comes from a 1966 Paul Newman movie (Sheridan's character has a poster from it in his room). Plus, Smith casts his actors cleverly; Sheridan (The Tree of Life, Mud) is a decent everyman, and Powley (The Diary of a Teenage Girl) brings smarts to her character, while Cohen (Brooklyn) is captivatingly volatile. All in all, it's a relatively minor thriller, but has enough surprises and interesting characters to be enjoyable.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: January 20, 2017
  • On DVD or streaming: April 25, 2017
  • Cast: Tye Sheridan , Bel Powley , Emory Cohen
  • Director: Christopher Smith
  • Inclusion Information: Female actors
  • Studio: Magnet Releasing
  • Genre: Thriller
  • Run time: 90 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R
  • MPAA explanation: some strong violence, sexual content, nudity, drug use, and language throughout
  • Last updated: July 28, 2023

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