In the Land of Women

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
In the Land of Women Movie Poster Image
Touching-but-treacly chick flick for moms and teens.
  • PG-13
  • 2007
  • 98 minutes

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 6 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Carter spends time with his ailing grandmother and encourages Lucy to take a closer look at her mother. Sarah and Lucy repair their damaged mother-daughter relationship. Sarah deals valiantly with her illness.

Violence

Lucy's ex-boyfriend clocks Carter in the face; another teen defends him by punching the ex.

Sex

Carter passionately kisses three different characters. In flashbacks, viewers see a montage of Carter and Sofia's relationship, including discreet glimpses of them making love in bed. Carter writes soft-core porn scripts and discusses a couple of scenes on the phone. Lucy confesses she had a pre-pubescent sexual episode. An extramarital affair is discussed in two pivotal scenes.

Language

Regular PG-13 curse words: "s--t," ""assh--e," "screw," "hell," and a few sexual comments about orgasms, seduction, and pornography.

Consumerism

Less than expected for a film marketed to teen girls: iPod, iMac, Mazda, Dairy Queen.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Carter and Lucy smoke cigarettes. Underage drinking is evident at a high-school party.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that while it's been marketed as a teen-centric romance, the movie includes some heavy subject matter. Teen girls will want to see this drama thanks to star Adam Brody -- aka Seth from The O.C. -- but his character here isn't a teenager; instead, he's a man with women issues. A central character has cancer, and its onset affects her entire family. Plus, a teenage girl smokes, drinks, and has a combative relationship with her mother, and a sometimes-senile grandmother believes she's on the verge of death. There are a few passionate kisses, and the protagonist's job as an erotic-film writer is mentioned throughout the film.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bykp3031 April 9, 2008

Great Movie, Stupid Not To Let Kids See

This movie was absouloutly great. I can not believe that some parents would not let their kids see it. So he talks about "sex" and he writes "ero... Continue reading
Parent of a 9, 12, 13, 16, and 18+ year old Written byMovieadviceguru July 6, 2010

One of those rare movies that you hate to see end!

One of my daughter's friends had seen the movie, so she of course was begging to see it as well. Her only being 11 at the time, so i agreed to watch it wit... Continue reading
Kid, 4 years old April 9, 2008

this movie rocked my barbie world

It was rockin. Since I love the oc it was even better. Adam Brody is a hecka hottie....
Kid, 8 years old April 9, 2008
a very sad movie a litte bit funny sad and aromantic condy loved it ages 14 and up

What's the story?

Carter, a Los Angeles writer who pens soft-core porn scripts who has just been dumped by his gorgeous girlfriend (sexily accented Spanish starlet Elena Anaya), decides to recover by visiting his healthy-but-nonetheless-ready-to-die grandmother (Olympia Dukakis) in the Detroit suburbs. Carter strikes up a friendship with his grandmother's neighbor Sarah (Meg Ryan) -- the kind of cardigans-and-cargo-pants-wearing stay-at-home mom whose house looks like a Crate and Barrel catalog – and her daughter, Lucy. As he gets to know Lucy, her steely veneer of teen angst (she paints when she's "freaked out") gives way to a fraught confession of just why she's perpetually angry at her mom. And, naturally, both mother and daughter crush on Carter, lending the film even more teen-opera drama.

Is it any good?

IN THE LAND OF WOMEN is exactly the kind of well-acted -- albeit formulaic -- "chick flick" that a mother and teen daughter would equally enjoy. The predictable plot is the stuff of movies of the week, but thanks to the winning charm of the actors involved, it's emotionally satisfying to watch Carter help these women mend their broken relationships and overcome their self doubt.

To O.C. devotees, Adam Brody will forever be fast-talking, lanky-limbed, high-strung Seth Cohen. Writer-director Jonathan Kasdan (one of Lawrence Kasdan's two showbiz-savvy sons) plays up Brody's inherent Seth-ness in the role of Carter Webb, the kind of sensitive, witty soul to whom women want to bare their soul -- and eventually their hearts.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about women's roles and mother-child relationships. Does being a stay-at-home mom make a woman worthless, without anything to show for her life? Why does Lucy perceive her mom as a failure and a fake, and how does Carter challenge Lucy to change her perspective? How does the media depict housewives? Is this film an accurate portrayal? Families can also discuss the difference between Sarah's relationship with her two daughters and how Carter helps the women around him feel better about themselves.

Movie details

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