Kinky Boots

Movie review by
Heather Boerner, Common Sense Media
Kinky Boots Movie Poster Image
Brit comedy is more warm and quirky than kinky.
  • PG-13
  • 2005
  • 107 minutes

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Despite their obvious differences, Lola and Charlie strike up a warm and close friendship. Lola puts up with a lot of discriminatory and threatening behavior because of her gender presentation, and it makes her depressed. Nicola cheats on Charlie. Charlie kisses Lauren, even though he's engaged to Nicola.

Violence

Men harass and seem to be threatening Lola. Lola, trying to protect herself from the toughs, accidentally hits Charlie in the face with her shoe. Don menaces Lola and writes anti-gay epithets in the factory.

Sex

Lots of talk about boots being "irresistible, tubular sex." Some light kissing between Charlie and Lauren and Charlie and Nicola. Lola, a transvestite and drag queen, flirts with Don. Don yells come-ons to Lola before he knows she's a man. Brief and innocent sexy dancing.

Language

Very little cursing, aside from British slang, like "bugger," "bloddy," and "sod off." Lola says the company may go "tits up." One use of "s--t."

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Considerable drinking, mostly of vodka by Lola. There's also drinking of beer in pubs and drinking of champagne.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that a main character in this movie, Lola, is threatened with violence and discriminated against because she's a transvestite and drag queen. Though this film stays light and quirky, it still raises very real questions about how far tolerance and acceptance goes, especially of boys who don't act in a masculine way. Both Charlie and his fiancé Nicola cheat on each other -- though neither has sex. Also, when Lola says she's a transvestite and drag queen, some teens are bound to ask what the difference is.

User Reviews

Adult Written byChristy L. March 18, 2017

Common Sense misses the mark on this one....

We took our 12 and 13 year old boys to this and it was fantastic - they have seen Stomp, Wicked, and Avenue Q and they loved this. It had very positive message... Continue reading
Kid, 7 years old April 9, 2008
Teen, 13 years old Written bySummer Williams September 14, 2017

What's the story?

Charlie Price (Joel Edgerton) is a small-town guy desperate to escape his father's stodgy shoe factory for the glamour of London. Lola (Chiwetel Ejiofor) is a drag queen constantly on the run from bigoted men and constantly in need of more sturdy footwear. When Charlie's dad dies suddenly, Charlie finds out he's in charge of saving the factory -- but outsourcing of shoe manufacturing has rendered his father's indestructible oxfords unsellable. So Charlie and Lola work together to save the company and produce over-the-knee boots strong enough to hold the weight of an over-six-foot black man. "Price Shoes has built its past on making a range of men's shoes," he says to his staff. "It only makes sense, going forward, for Price to make shoes for a range of men."

Is it any good?

Though it doesn't reach Sex and the City heights of shoe obsession, it's still a heartwarming story about how important fashion is in helping feminine people express themselves. Kinky Boots is about shoe-lovers uniting, and a reverence for footwear of all types.

The film could have been a depressing forced march through screeds on bigotry and global trade. But director Julian Jarrold's light touch, and Ejiofor's delicate and sympathetic portrayal of Lola, make it anything but. It's sweet. It's quirky. It has a cheeky sense of humor, and it's imminently watchable.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about gender presentation and discrimination. How are people in your life treated for acting against gender type? Do you make fun of boys for acting feminine or mock girls for being stereotypically masculine? How does Lola deal with it, and how would you deal with it if people ostracized you in a similar way? What examples have you seen in the media of this kind of discrimination?

Movie details

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