By Tara McNamara,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Pleasant romance about self-discovery has some drinking.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Title implies finding love, but movie is more about finding yourself in unexpected places with unexpected people. Dig deeper rather than make snap judgments about people's outward behavior. Gently delivered faith-based message that you're not alone; God is watching over you. Themes include integrity. Explores some of the unpleasant reality behind management of child actors and their lack of agency over their own lives.
Positive Role Models
Finley is a positive female role model. She's confident in her talent, and when she doesn't achieve a goal, she takes action to set herself up for success and try again. She's considerate, and her priorities are in the right place. She's not impressed by celebrity and money, keeps her focus on what truly matters. But she has a relationship with a young man who demonstrates narcisstic behavior until after they're involved. And some female characters are portrayed somewhat stereotypically: obsessed and gossipy, conniving and mean, jealous and possessive. No notable diversity in core cast.
Violence & Scariness
Some pretend blood in a clearly fake movie-making environment.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Primary story and subplot are about romance. A couple of kisses. Photo of shirtless man.
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Language includes "helluva," as well as U.K. slang such as "shite" and "wanker."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Mixed messages about drinking: photos of a main character drinking and partying that lend to an image of desirability. An elderly musician is frequently drunk but is highly respected in the community. Several scenes take place in a pub. A man is said to have drunk himself to death.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Finding You is a wholesome, Ireland-set romance based on Jenny B. Jones' YA novel There You'll Find Me that's really about finding yourself. While it's unquestionably about a young couple finding love, the elements are soft enough that it feels more like a family film with a touch of romance (there are two kisses and some hand-holding). Lead character Finley (Rose Reid) is role model material: She's caring, thoughtful, and self-confident. But female characters are also portrayed somewhat stereotypically: obsessed and gossipy, conniving and mean, and jealous and possessive. Finley's love interest is a celebrity, and the story explores some of the unpleasant reality behind the management of child actors and their lack of agency over their own lives. Scenes take place inside a pub, a young character appears to be drinking in photos, and a well-respected musician is often shown drunk. Expect to hear some U.K.-specific profanity ("shite," "wanker"). The movie includes a faith-based element that feels authentic to the story, and characters demonstrate integrity.
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Based on 4 parent reviews
A Rare Family-Friendly Movie!
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What's the Story?
Adapted from Jenny B. Jones' YA novel There You'll Find Me, FINDING YOU introduces viewers to violinist Finley (Rose Reid) after a failed audition for a music conservatory. In a quick pivot, she opts for a semester abroad in Ireland to clear her head and improve her musical skills. When movie star Beckett Rush (Jedidiah Goodacre), who's shooting a film nearby, becomes taken with her, Finely has to examine her priorities and decide what she'll risk for love.
Is It Any Good?
Call this a "starter romance": a sweet story that's low on lovey-dovey stuff and more about growing up. It's actually less romantic than many Disney animated princess movies, although Finley (Reid) is just a few degrees away from Belle in Beauty and the Beast: She's grounded and not interested in distractions from her scholarly pursuits. And the movie's "prince," Beckett, starts out much like Gaston: He's an arrogant man about town who's used to having admirers fall over him. But the more Finley allows Beckett into her life, like The Beast, the more we see him for who he is. That might make for an enchanting animated fable, but in a modern-day live-action film, it's a little troubling. Yes, digging deeper to look past people's facades is a great message. But these days, most parents usually hope that their kids will realize that if a potential love interest looks and acts like a narcissist, it's in their best interest to not get involved.
Finding You is full of discoveries, like a smartly assembled cast and the beauty of Ireland. It offers an escape for families longing to visit ancient lands with captivating castles and grass that's blindingly green. The subplot about a medieval, dragon-slaying fantasy film being shot in the castles near Carlingford is a clever use of the space. While not all of it makes sense, Beckett's dad/manager has tight control over the life of his son, which introduces elements of critical thinking for kids who might realize that fame and fortune have a price. Finding You works both for families seeking out faith-based films and for those who aren't interested. One of the movie's faith-based elements has a mic-drop moment, but it happens without a single line of dialogue and isn't jarring or forced. Bottom line? As a piece of entertainment, you're likely to find that you get more out of this film than you might have expected.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the messages that Finding You sends about drinking. Are there consequences for drinking? Why does that matter?
Would you classify this as a faith-based film? Why, or why not?
Many films about self-discovery involve going on a physical journey. Why do you think this is? How does this film demonstrate that sometimes we know who we are, and it's more about finding the courage to be yourself?
What comment is the movie making on celebrity and celebrity-obsessed culture? Do you think Beckett's situation is similar to that of other celebrities whose careers began when they were kids?
How does Finley demonstrate integrity? Is she a role model? Why, or why not? Did you notice any stereotypes in the way characters were depicted?
- In theaters: May 14, 2021
- On DVD or streaming: August 10, 2021
- Cast: Rose Reid, Jedidiah Goodacre, Tom Everett Scott
- Director: Brian Baugh
- Studio: Roadside Attractions
- Genre: Romance
- Topics: Book Characters, Brothers and Sisters, Great Girl Role Models
- Character Strengths: Integrity
- Run time: 115 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: language and thematic elements
- Last updated: March 31, 2022
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