Parents' Guide to

I'll Be Home for Christmas

By Common Sense Media, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 9+

Jon Taylor Thomas' yule tale charming for tweens.

Movie PG 1998 86 minutes
I'll Be Home for Christmas Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 6 parent reviews

age 12+

Not sure why this site says it's okay for 9 and up.

I'm a little disappointed with the rating system for this movie. I rely on common sense media for our family movie nights . I ended up needing to fast forward so many times that I finally just turned it off . We are not an uptight family but I do however believe in keeping children innocent for as long as we can , which can be quite difficult nowadays . For this reason I use common sense media to check certain categories before turning on a movie . I'm greatly disappointed with there not being anything in the sexual category previously for this movie . While it is not highly sexually explicit , I still feel there are things that other parents, like myself ,might want to know . First , a girl in the movie tells a boy not to feel her up . Second, a police officer had previously cheated on his wife by kissing another woman , the wife repeatedly mentions that he kissed her using tongue and he blames this on the alcohol . I finally shut the movie off after a teenage girl and boy were given the honeymoon suite to stay in for the night . I'm not sure if anything happened after that but I wasn't taking any chances . Now if you're okay with these things , to each their own . However , I'm sure there are other parents out there that might share these concerns with me and for them I am writing this review . While these things may be over some children's heads , they may spark conversations for others .
age 10+

Really good movie

It is a very nice movie with a good message at the end. Also it is a good movie for the whole family. It does have some sex jokes but it goes over most kids head.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (6 ):
Kids say (4 ):

It's hard to find a Christmas movie for younger teens that isn't too corny or childish; I'LL BE HOME FOR CHRISTMAS may fit the bill, since it combines sentiment with age-appropriate humor. Adults may find this holiday story dull, but teens will probably enjoy Jonathan Taylor Thomas and his con man persona. Thomas is a surprisingly skilled actor, and makes his character's transformation from self-absorption to sensitivity believable and appealing. As Allie, Jessica Biel is refreshingly real, too. Allie isn't afraid to speak her mind; she tells Jake what she thinks of his bad behavior.

Although the story has no real surprises, it's kept afloat by Jake's rakish ingenuity. He's at his best when he's forced to dispense "hot" appliances to tiny tots, or when he helps a shy cop win back his estranged wife. Each episode along the way teaches Jake a lesson about being honest and helping others, and by the end of his journey, he drops the con man pose and lets his real self come through.

Movie Details

Inclusion information powered by

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.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate