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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Lightweight characterizations that aren't really affecting one way or another. Even when Maggie declares that they're all supposed to be heartless big-city cynics who don't believe in love, there's no real meanness in it. Still, Jo's search for self-improvement and philosophy is repeatedly mocked, and her French guru gets knocked off his pedestal.
Violence & Scariness
Just one guy hit over the head with a vase.
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Products & Purchases
A built-in ad for clothing and dressing to the nines, though no real-life product labels are mentioned.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Social drinking, smoking in cafés.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the movie's high-fashion milieu, though satirized, does tend to be a consumerist plug for upscale women's clothing. Female characters are repeatedly objectified (all thin and gorgeous) and exhorted to dress and look their best. Being a pretty girl is equated with being rather stupid, and the heroine is chastised for trying to be more intellectual. Plus, there's a brief reference to "romantic" suicide in the context of the novel Anna Karenina. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
FUNNY FACE is a bubbly, brilliantly colored but rather superficial old-school Hollywood musical. Compared with the same director's earlier masterpiece Singin' in the Rain it's a great-looking bonbon that leaves a sort of funny taste, if you ponder it too hard (which one shouldn't). The script takes satirical jabs at the fashion world's shallow superficiality, especially in the opening "Think Pink" song-and-dance number. But it also parodies the rebellion against 1950s consumer society embraced by the "beat generation," and their jazz tunes, coffeehouse concerts, and nonconformists.
So are the filmmakers in favor of anything? Yes, romance, and a very patriarchal one at that. Song-and-dance man Fred Astaire looks more like a dad than boyfriend to the magical Audrey Hepburn, and their romance feels like protective father-daughter stuff rather than real passion. None of these characters are given a history except Jo, a cloistered thinker meant to be an ugly-duckling (never mind the starlet's luminous looks). It's a little disconcerting the movie dismisses her deep thinking as a silly quirk, symbolized when Hepburn does weird, angular modern dance steps, in contrast to Astaire's graceful soft-shoe routines.
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.