Idiocracy

Movie review by
James Rocchi, Common Sense Media
Idiocracy Movie Poster Image
Vulgar satire manages to be both stupid and smart.
  • R
  • 2006
  • 84 minutes

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 7 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

The satirical message -- that the ignorant are outbreeding the intelligent, to a degree that will make a future full of morons -- is stern, strong, tough-to-take stuff. A main character learns to take responsibility and become a leader; as this happens in a world of idiots, though, it's hard to contextualize it in a positive light.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The main character is a decent, if dim, man of principle.

Violence

Comedic fighting, scuffling, and blows to the groin. A character is beaten by the police. Comedic gunplay and explosions. A character is pepper sprayed. 

Sex

A character is a prostitute; much discussion of sex, sexual matters, prostitution, and "pimping." Nude male buttocks for gratuitous comic value. Constant comedic references to masturbation and other sex acts.

Language

Frequent strong language, including "s--t," "ass," "f--k," "asshole," "motherf---er," "balls," "Goddamn" and more. The N-word is used. "Fag" and "retard" are used as insults.

Consumerism

Many brands mentioned in a satirical context -- including Costco, Starbucks, Carl's Jr., Lexus, Gatorade, and more.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the movie's sharp-toothed satire is loaded with a lot of strong language, jokes about sex, and physical comedy involving blows to the crotch.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 9 year old Written bymauriciob1 January 13, 2016

Deeper than it seems

It is a great movie to start the following discussions: * are we getting dumber? * are we getting shallower? * what motivates our political choices (or, why was... Continue reading
Parent Written byTmk003 August 22, 2017

Not appropriate for younger kids

Sexual content and sexual humor throughout whole movie. There is also smoking which isn't listed in the ratings.
Teen, 16 years old Written bySynchronicity January 21, 2010

Underrated and funny satire by none other than Mike Judge

In the year 2505, a perfectly average man from the army that was frozen in an experiment from 2005 learns that...human society has dwindled down to the lowest l... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old October 17, 2009

I just don't get it.

Okay, yeah, sure. It swears and they have lots of inipropraiate, (I don't care if i spelled that wrong), things but still. you really think after watching... Continue reading

What's the story?

In the present, an Army private named Joe Bauers (Luke Wilson) is frozen as part of an experiment in cryogenics; a mistake means he's left frozen until 2505, where he and his fellow participant, a prostitute named Rita, (Maya Rudolph) discover a world where the trend of less-educated people to have more children (as explained in the prologue) has led to a future full of idiots with society breaking down and a drought starving America. Joe, a perfectly average man in our time, is now a super-genius by comparison; can he help fix a broken future and put it on the path back to being even barely functional?

Is it any good?

The movie is uneven, but it's so idiosyncratic and different that at the very least it stands out on its own. Written and directed by Mike Judge (Office Space, Extract), IDIOCRACY was notoriously abandoned by 20th Century Fox, who opened it on only a handful of screens during its initial theatrical run. On DVD, the film feels re-cut, as if the studio were hedging its bets, but even so the film's silly satire comes through, helped in no small part by Wilson's natural everyman charm.

Judge's comedy can be hit-or-miss in Idiocracy, but at the same time it's a product of such a distinctly skewed worldview -- Judge is, after all, the man who gave us Beavis and Butt-head -- that it also stands out as unique even in the light of its occasional failures and in its studio-altered version. Idiocracy is more silly than mean-spirited, and the film's jokes mocking the traditional vision of the future earn a lot of laughs (here plants are watered with sports drink and Costco is a degree-granting institution).

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the ideas here -- does pop culture reward people for being stupid? Is a culture of instant gratification and consumerism bad for long-term intellectual development?

  • Families can also talk about the movie's  satirical roots -- what does this vulgar, silly comedy have in common with the work of, for example, Jonathan Swift?

Movie details

For kids who love comedy

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