A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The perils and the possibilities of digital life are examined. Overall, the message is positive -- that our kids' connected lives and enhanced-technology culture can offer amazing opportunities. Concerns about distraction, multitasking, and emotional distance are raised.
Positive Role Models
Commentator Douglas Rushkoff is a leading thinker and writer on the digital revolution; Rachel Dretzin is an award-winning producer. Smart, insightful experts are interviewed.
Violence & Scariness
Footage of drone planes bombing real targets and snippets of violent video games used for military recruitment.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Digital Nation: Life on the Virtual Frontier is really more for adults than kids. The 90-minute Frontline documentary continues the exploration of what it means for kids to be growing up in a digital world that began with producer Rachel Dretzin's stunning Growing Up Online. Dretzin and commentator Douglas Rushkoff, a leading thinker and writer on the digital revolution, explore the impact of technology on this generation of kids whose lives are constantly connected. The program is accompanied by a thought-provoking website (where the complete program is available). Some violent footage and discussion of war and military tools appear in the segment "Waging War." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Dretzin deftly presents the personal and the political, as well as the technological and the human sides of the digital revolution. Excellent use of expert interviews combines to create a very balanced presentation of the advantages and costs of growing up in a digital, connected world. The most commanding part of the documentary is its examination of the role of technology in war -- both in killing and in recruitment.
Dretzin balances the consideration of the subject by showing how post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can be mitigated through digital recreation of trauma. But the interviews with the "pilots" of the bomb-dropping drones are downright bone-chilling.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.