A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that In the Shadow of Iris (originally Iris) is a French thriller with English subtitles that pairs sex with violence in a consensual, bondage-and-discipline context. This Netflix Original is not for kids. One scene shows a man tied up and being whipped by a paid dominatrix; he writhes in pain, and collapses semi-conscious. A trickle of blood is visible and she gives him a long kiss with tongue. They also kiss over the body of someone who's just been murdered. There's also a graphic sex scene that shows nudity from behind and bare breasts briefly. There's very little gore, but a dead body is moved around, someone's killed in a fight, and the main plot is about a kidnapping. Main characters smoke, and there's some background smoking, too. Cursing includes "d--k," "ass," "balls," "whores," and "f--k."
What's the story?
IN THE SHADOW OF IRIS tells of a wealthy banker, his wife (Charlotte Le Bon), and a down-and-out mechanic (Romain Duris) in Paris. The mechanic kidnaps the banker's wife and demands a ransom. As the police investigate the crime, events take strange turns and definitive proof remains elusive. Some people aren't what they seem, and some people are much more than they seem.
Is it any good?
This taut French thriller with lots of twists, turns, and surprises will keep audiences guessing right up to the end, but the pairing of sex and violence means it's absolutely not for kids. In the Shadow of Iris builds tension, suspense, and even confusion as audiences try to guess who's on who's side and what comes next.
The strong sexual content is sure to appeal to teens, but it's only for those mature enough to see that it's all pretty gratuitous. It doesn't advance the plot or tell us anything we need to know about the characters. The characters are well-developed and compelling, though, and some of the directing and camera-work tricks catch the viewer off guard. It works as a pretty good thriller, but families can find a lot of other choices without the iffy content.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the sexual content in In the Shadow of Iris. How much is OK in movies? Is it realistic? Does it tell you anything important about the characters or story?
Does the movie glamorize adult behavior, or do the people and their actions seem realistic?
Do you agree with Doriot and Claudia that people are all the same underneath? Do you think the filmmaker agrees? Why or why not?
Themes & Topics
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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.