A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this "mockumentary" is aimed more at adults than kids, but teens who've enjoyed director Christopher Guest's earlier films (including Best in Show) may very well want to see it. It's satirical treatment contains references to same-sex relationships, prostitutes, ethnic jokes, and superficial people who are only thinking of themselves -- but make it seem like they're thinking of everyone else. It's all about the superficial world of Hollywood, where the bottom line is more important than people. The movie's goal is to satirize that world, but some kids may miss the subtler digs and spoofs.
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What's the story?
Marilyn Hack (Catherine O'Hara) is an aging actress who still isn't recognized when she drives up to the studio gate. Her latest film, Home for Purim, is a low-budget indie drama. Her co-star is Victor Alan Miller (Harry Shearer), lately appearing in hot dog commercials. Director Jay Berman (Christopher GuestMichael McKean). When word gets around that Marilyn's performance might net her an Oscar, things get a little crazy. The Internet rumor mill goes wild, and Marilyn starts getting paranoid about her abilities. Agent Morley Orfkin (Eugene Levy) and publicist Corey Taft (John Michael Higgins) are downright surprised.
Is it any good?
If you're a fan of Guest's earlier films, this is a must-see. Guest is famous for his largely improvised mockumentaries (Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show, A Mighty Wind). And although it's done in a more-traditional narrative style than Guest's previous films, For Your Consideration carries on that tradition in both tone and personnel.
The film is a brilliant send-up of the Hollywood community and its obsession with awards. No one is spared. Cosmetic surgery addicts, navel-gazing actors, and cold-hearted studios are all brought to task in this movie. It's an insiders' look at Tinseltown that's both pathetic and funny. It's rife with bizarre characters and hilarious throw-away lines, so much so that you might need to see it twice to catch everything.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the format of the "mockumentary." What can the filmmakers get away with saying because the movie is a spoof? Does the fact that the movie is a satire shed light on why our society places so much importance on the people in the entertainment industry and their views? Why do so many people look up to air-brushed, magazine-cover stars? Who should get the awards in our society -- someone who makes $50 million at the box office, or someone who's promoting world peace? What message does the movie send about Hollywood in the end?
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