Father and child sit together smiling while looking at a smart phone.

Want more recommendations for your family?

Sign up for our weekly newsletter for entertainment inspiration

Parents' Guide to


By Brian Costello, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Violent, dark '90s teen comedy with unrelenting cursing.

Movie R 1999 87 minutes
Jawbreaker Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 13+

It was actually good. a good nineties movie .

its more of a movie for mature teens not children.

This title has:

Great messages
age 14+

Dark and violent

It's ok to let your children watch of ages 14 and up it's soooo dark and fun and some sexuality. it's sooo much fun 100%gonna enjoy it if you watch it.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (1 ):

This is the nihilistic stepsister of Heathers and Mean Girls. Sadly, it doesn't say anything much different than the former (merely sacrificing timeless satire for smug cynicism), and the quality of the writing isn't at the level of the latter. A commercial dud that was critically panned upon its initial release, Jawbreaker has emerged as a cult favorite. Perhaps the positives of the movie -- the fashion sense, the iconic scene of the four popular girls strutting down the high school hallway in slow motion, The Donnas rocking the prom, the '90s sensibility permeating it, and the sheer evil Rose McGowan brings to her truly horrible character -- deserve to be appreciated decades later. And yet, there's so much that's slapdash and lazy, smug and glib, that an argument could also be made that it belongs in the trash heap of '90s history alongside Right Said Fred and Blockbuster Video.

The ending is deeply unsatisfying. For a movie with so much larger-than-life exaggeration, a conveniently arrived MacGuffin and a tame, questionable revenge plot is a deflating letdown. It's a laziness that reveals the cracks in the rest of the movie. The dark comedy is at everyone's expense, even those who don't deserve it. Simply making a joke at the expense of anorexics, for instance, doesn't make it "dark comedy," especially if it isn't funny and just comes across as pointlessly mean. This kind of mean-spiritedness dilutes the comedy that might drive the point of the movie, assuming there's one beyond "no one really has friends in high school and everyone is a willing participant in the caste system of American adolescence." And having teen characters throw as many F-bombs as the middle-aged Mafioso in Goodfellas might be "edgy" to some, but the word eventually loses its humor and shock value, and comes across as desperate.

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