Erin Brockovich

  • Review Date: May 18, 2003
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2000
  • Running Time: 132 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Julia Roberts winner. R mostly for language.
  • Review Date: May 18, 2003
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2000
  • Running Time: 132 minutes





What parents need to know


Sad illnesses and deaths.


Sexual references and situations.


Very strong language.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Drinking and smoking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the movie's R rating comes from very strong language and some sexual references (Erin jokes that she got the cooperation of the town's residents by performing sexual favors). And no matter how high the settlement, the fact remains that children and their families were made terribly ill, and no amount of money will make up for that.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

When she loses her lawsuit after a car accident, Erin Brockovich (Julia Roberts) forces the lawyer who represented her to give her a job (Albert Finney as Ed Masry). No one wants her there, and no one likes her because she has a big mouth and wears trashy clothes. But she is curious and tenacious. She gets interested in a real estate file that includes medical records, and goes off to investigate. It turns out that the community of Hinkley has been poisoned by hexavent chromium, leaching into the drinking water from a PG&E plant. Erin gains the trust of the community and helps Ed put together a case that would win the largest direct claim settlement in American history.

Is it any good?


The movie poster for ERIN BROCKOVICH says, "She brought a small town to its feet and a huge company to its knees." So viewers know where it's all going, and just settle back to enjoy the ride. And an enjoyable ride it is, too. Julia Roberts keeps getting better and better, more luminous, and at the same time more vulnerable and more in control. She plays Erin as a woman who never stopped believing in herself and yet is deeply touched when others believe in her, too. She understands the way the people in Hinkley feel, mistrustful of lawyers and overwhelmed by the odds. She understands that "people want to tell their stories." And she has enough confidence in herself to know that, while she might not have been able to keep her beauty queen promise of ending world hunger, this is a promise she can keep.

She understands, too, that there will be costs. A romance with a loving biker/nanny (George, played by Aaron Eckhart, who makes that combination endearingly believable) and her relationships with her children are threatened by her devotion to the case. In a heartbreaking scene, she is driving back home after a hard day and George tells her that her baby spoke her first word. Erin is overjoyed at the news and devastated to have missed it. The look in her eyes as George tells her all about it is complex, rich, perfect. And there are many Rocky/Norma Rae-style feel-good moments, like when PG&E's first lawyer, looking like a high school debate club president, tries to bully Erin and Ed, and when Erin uses everything from her cleavage to her baby to get access to the records she needs.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why it is that Erin is able to connect with the residents of Hinkley, why she is reluctant to accept help from anyone, and the importance of not judging people based on their appearance. They may also want to talk about the issue of corporate responsibility. No one at PG&E wanted anyone to get hurt. How do problems like lack of accountability arise?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:March 17, 2000
DVD release date:August 15, 2000
Cast:Albert Finney, David Brisbin, Julia Roberts
Director:Steven Soderbergh
Studio:Universal Pictures
Run time:132 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:language and sexual references and situation

This review of Erin Brockovich was written by

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 14 years old Written bynolegirl97 July 22, 2011

Shows leadership and character!

I think that this movie is only rated R because it drops the F bomb a couple of times. Do you seriously think that your kids don't hear that in the locker rooms at school? It is a fantastic movie, and teaches some valuable lessons
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 13 years old Written byMovieFreak101 April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age

I'm still can't belive this actually happened.....

Erin Brockovich must have a incredible women! This was a wonderful way to prove anything is possible..... Best Wishes, MovieFreak101 This movie is ok for: 15+ RIP: Ed Massey: Wonderful man and brilliant friend.
Adult Written byHekateIsis April 24, 2009

My Review

I really enjoyed this movie and have watched it throughout the years. However due to some sexual content I don't think it would be a good one for children under 15.
What other families should know
Too much sex


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