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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
With much effort and courage (and some good luck, too), talented performers can succeed; however, even great success doesn't necessarily bring personal happiness. Even the smartest and most gifted among us don't necessarily make the best decisions. It's helpful to use humor as a way of deflecting personal hurt and disappointment.
Positive Role Models
Fanny Brice is portrayed as a talented, off-beat, and spirited performer who chooses to retain her positive values even as she reaches the heights of show business success. She treats people well and is fair, honorable and generous. Still, she blindly trusts and loves a man who is weak and self-destructive, subjecting herself to heartache because of him.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
One suggestive -- and sometimes comic -- song finds Nick Arnstein seducing the innocent young Fanny Brice. At the end of the song, they kiss and sink down onto a sofa. It's implied thereafter that they are involved in a sexual relationship. There are numerous passionate kisses between Fanny and Nick throughout. There is no nudity, but there are lots of revealing costumes. Trademark statuesque, beautiful Ziegfield Follies girls appear on stage in gowns which showing lots of leg and cleavage.
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One "hell," one "damn."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Lots of social drinking in restaurants, at home, in gambling club, including to "drown their sorrows." Two leading characters smoke.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this elegant, romantic, and often funny musical is wonderful entertainment, but might be too long and mature for many tweens. The movie's nearly three hours focuses on the ups and downs in the romance of Fanny Brice and Nick Arnstein and includes some mature thematic material, such as marital woes and dishonesty. The romance includes Nick's smooth seduction of the innocent young Brice and hints of his promiscuity. However, there is no on-camera sexual activity other than passionate kissing and embracing, and no nudity. Many of the glamorous costumes reveal a lot of leg and have plunging necklines. Characters do plenty of social drinking and leading characters smoke cigarettes. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Made in 1968, this is one of the richest musical films of its era, a highlight in a period of filmmaking that was filled with great material. FUNNY GIRL (recipient of eight Academy Award nominations) is comprised of an extraordinary performance by Barbra Streisand in her first film role, dazzling production values with wondrous costumes and sets, a musical score with multiple show-stopping numbers, and a heartfelt story. What's more, the subject matter -- a young woman who becomes a great star but is naive in affairs of the heart -- gives the film emotional complexity and an ending that defies tradition.
Teens with an interest in musical theater or costume design might find this film particularly inspiring. It is interesting to note that the movie took considerable liberties with the real story -- particularly the events in the life of Nick Arnstein and Fanny's naivete -- and that Ray Stark, the producer, was, in fact, Fanny Brice's son-in-law, married to her daughter, Frances Arnstein. A movie sequel Funny Lady, also starring Barbra Streisand as a more mature Fanny Brice, was released in 1975.
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.