Preteen girl looking at a cell phone with her parents

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Parents' Guide to

Girl in the Picture

By Sabrina McFarland, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Child abduction docu reveals dangers and secrets; violence.

Movie NR 2022 102 minutes
Girl in the Picture movie poster image.

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This film marks another concisely crafted form of cinema by director Skye Borgman (Abducted in Plain Sight) about the shocking subject of child abuse. In Girl in the Picture, a kid who aspires to become an aerospace engineer is raised by her single-parent household dad in America. "She was just super smart," recalls one of the girl's friends. "We all had big hair and crazy clothes. It was just your normal 1980s high school kind of vibe."

Soon suspicions, though, are raised by friends about the teen's real identity and relationship with her father. Then, suddenly, the pair disappear from their home. The daughter is later asked by her parent to provide income for their existence by committing sexual acts. "I can't imagine," says Joe Fitzpatrick, an FBI special agent, "anybody being under those conditions for that long period of time." Girl in the Picture's on-screen duration can be a disturbing one. But, the documentary is decidedly an invaluable tool that might prove helpful to teens about the hidden dangers one may face while growing up and ways to possibly prevent such events from ever taking place.

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