Parents' Guide to

Elizabeth Blue

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Drama quietly explores a woman's mental illness.

Movie PG-13 2017 95 minutes
Elizabeth Blue Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 1 parent review

age 15+

A good film to watch for sheltered youth

Although Elizabeth Blue does have a slow pace, I don’t think mental illness can possibly be portrayed realistically at a faster one. You feel the pain and loneliness of the heroine and suffer with her through her hallucinations. You question people in her life and whether she is getting the support she needs from them. In the end, you come out with a glimpse of understanding of what life for someone with a mental illness might be like and hopefully feel for them a little more. The message here is, I think, is that the reality of living with mental illness is that painful, that slow, and sometimes even ugly. It is no laughing matter and we should pay more attention to it. Not everything can be wrapped in shiny paper.

Is It Any Good?

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

This drama's pace might be too slow for some viewers, but there's an intimacy and authenticity to Elizabeth's struggle for a typical life when she's dealing with a serious illness. Despite the odds against them, Elizabeth and Grant share a sweet, loving romance. It's unclear what he does for a living, but Vincent plays Grant as a dutifully caring, devoted partner who wants to grow old and have children with Elizabeth -- even though he knows that will mean helping her navigate her mental health for the rest of their lives. And Schafer gives a surprisingly nuanced performance as Elizabeth, who one moment can seem "fine" but the next becomes obsessive and has to fight off the impulse to do what the voices are telling her.

Best known for playing dangerous men, Akinnuoye-Agbaje plays against type as a patient psychiatrist who tries his hardest to help Elizabeth see what's real and what's her illness. Other notable supporting characters include Kathleen Quinlan in brief scenes as Elizabeth's mother and Christopher Ashman as Elizabeth's cruel hallucination. That said, while Elizabeth Blue means well, there's not much of a plot, and as a character study, it's fairly obvious where the story is heading. A few solid performances make the drama watchable, but whatever director Vincent Sabella is trying to convey gets obscured by the film's gimmicky (and easy-to-guess) denouement.

Movie Details

Inclusion information powered by

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.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate