I'm Your Woman

Movie review by
Tara McNamara, Common Sense Media
I'm Your Woman Movie Poster Image
Brilliant female flip on mob drama has violence, smoking.
  • R
  • 2020
  • 120 minutes

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 16+
Based on 2 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

You are stronger and more capable than you know. 

Positive Role Models

The story centers on a young White woman finding her courage and independence. She's protected by a Black family, who are portrayed positively. Women are shown to be supportive in a situation that Hollywood would stereotypically play as antagonistic.

Violence

Gun violence results in bloody wounds and death. A nightclub shooting depicts chaos from a first-person perspective. Serious car crash with injuries. Characters are deeply in peril. An elderly woman has bruises on her face, revealing she's been beaten. Primary characters are in constant peril.

Sex

Married couples kiss.

Language

"F--k" is said a few times. 

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Characters smoke cigarettes; however, it's said that cigarettes are bad for the health, and a character often puts one in his mouth without smoking to wean himself off actually smoking. Drinking wine at social event. Drinking is shown in conjunction with depression.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that I'm Your Woman is a 1970s-set crime syndicate drama told from the point of view of a woman named Jean (Rachel Brosnahan) who didn't fully understand that she was married to the mob. It's like the B-side of The Godfather. While this concept has previously been explored in Widows and The Kitchen, this film is a coming-of-age story of sorts about a sheltered young woman coming into her own power. Part of that is an awareness of her White privilege, which comes authentically from her finding protection with a Black family. Women are continually shown as supportive to one another, including in circumstances where it might be unexpected. At one point, Jean's husband gives her a baby, and it's unclear how he obtained the infant (the info viewers get is unreliable). Compared to other mob dramas, this one is notably restrained. While guns are used to kill and gunfire erupts at a nightclub (shown from the point of view of someone caught in the middle of the chaos), it's less than the norm and is given real impact -- viewers feel the horror every time a gun goes off. While smoking is prevalent -- as it truly was in the '70s -- it's presented under the context that it's unhealthy. Language includes a few uses of "f--k," and there's occasional drinking and kissing.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byvivela December 11, 2020

It kept my interest

It was good because you didn't know what was going to happen next. Also there was almost always moving forward with action or new information. I never get... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byDaphne the Reviewer February 3, 2021

Dull, cyclical attempt at mob violence takes a lingering look at nothing of importance

Rachel Brosnahan does a wonderful job of playing an entirely insufferable character. Jean (Brosnahan) seems to have an extreme lack of sense, being unable to gr... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byLoranikas303 December 25, 2020

I'm Not Your Woman!

This mom is mean! (ಠ∩ಠ)

What's the story?

Set in the 1970s, I'M YOUR WOMAN follows Jean (Rachel Brosnahan), a young housewife and brand new mother. Her quiet life is disrupted when she's awakened in the middle night by her husband's colleagues and told she's in danger. She and her baby go on the run with a driver (Arinze Kene) who's been assigned to keep her safe.

Is it any good?

Husband-and-wife filmmaking team Julia Hart and Jordan Horowitz turn the gritty mafia movie upside down with this completely enthralling drama. Usually, when movies are made about a mob "family," the term refers to the network of those working under one mob boss. I'm Your Woman focuses on a mafia member's actual family. And in revealing how that family's lives are up-ended in the wake of one person's crime and violence, director Hart delivers the opposite of The Godfather, Scarface, or Goodfellas in every way. There's no celebration of organized crime here. There's no implication that power obtained through guns and violence is cool or that money acquired in such a way creates a better life. Here, guns have weight, literally. Gunfire isn't just felt emotionally felt: Hart delivers a visceral experience so that viewers can almost feel how heavy the gun is in Jean's hand or pocket, establishing an uncomfortable feeling of lurking danger. 

Jean isn't totally innocent, but she starts as a bit of a ninny. She lounges around in her posh but not extravagant house, dreaming of having a baby because, as a wife in the early '70s, that's what she expected from life. She's a blank-slate beauty, the product of an old-school White patriarchal environment where she hasn't been given guidance or encouragement to develop skills, an education, or a personality -- because why would she need those things? And because of that, she doesn't believe in asking questions; she finds security in a husband who loves and takes care of her, including when he just shows up with a baby and declares that it's theirs, saying "it's all worked out." In other words, Jean is weak. But when the rug is pulled out from under her, instead of buckling and behaving in a way that would result in her getting killed, Jean now has this baby to protect. She hasn't internally accepted him as hers yet, but she must keep him, and therefore herself, safe. Brosnahan deftly shows the gradual evolution of a woman realizing she must find her strength and exceed her own expectations. She proves again that she is truly a "marvelous" actress, and I'm Your Woman is an excellent option for older teens as a counter to the toxic masculinity of so many "mob muscle" cinema classics.

 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how I'm Your Woman flips the script on so many all-White, all-male mob movies. How is it similar, and how is it different?

  • How does the film demonstrate both White privilege and a White person's lack of awareness of its existence?

  • A growing cinematic trend is to switch the gender or race in stories that were initially written about/centered on White men. Compare this effort to others in a similar boat, such as Ocean's 8 or Hamilton

  • How is smoking depicted in a historically accurate manner but with a modern responsibility? 

  • How is swearing used as a character tool? Do you think its use adds value?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love female-led movies

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