Intense British period drama has sex, violence, language.
No reviews yet.Add your rating
Based on 2 reviews
Common Sense is a nonprofit organization. Your purchase helps us remain independent and ad-free.
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.
Suggest an Update
A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Lady Macbeth is an enthralling British period drama that deals with adult issues and has moments of strong violence, sex, and some language. Having being sold into a marriage -- with the sole purpose of providing an heir -- Katherine (Florence Pugh) begins an affair with one of the workers on her husband's estate, leading to a number of violent and deadly events. Murders are shown onscreen, as well as severe beatings. This includes a kid being suffocated to death and a man being hung naked and beaten with a cane. There is also occasional strong language including the "C" word and "f--k." Alcohol is consumed and, at times, characters are shown to be mildly intoxicated. Frequent sex scenes include full nudity from behind. The movie uses stillness and silence to create atmosphere, which enhances the impact of the more passionate and brutal moments, though it may be slow-moving and potentially disturbing for younger viewers.
There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.
What's the Story?
In LADY MACBETH, Katherine (Florence Pugh) is sold into a marriage with a man twice her age, who treats her with coldness and contempt. When he is called away on business, she is able to regain a small taste of freedom, and begins a passionate affair with a worker on the estate. But as her desire to be permanently free from her situation begins to manifest itself as a ruthless obsession, she is driven to commit atrocities that threaten to destroy everything around her.
Is It Any Good?
In her second ever feature role, Pugh gives a captivating performance that shows the kind of screen presence and technical mastery of a far more experienced actor. As Katherine, she radiates an inner power at odds with her seemingly powerless position -- an air of dignity and control that moves from defiance to cold-blooded malevolence as Lady Macbeth progresses. First-time director William Oldroyd's sense of visual storytelling is dripping in tension. The stark, muted interiors, repetition of shots, and the use of stillness and silence create a pressure cooker of repression and frustration that serves as a stark contrast to the wild, unrefined nature of the surrounding landscape and the unfiltered masculinity of Cosmo Jarvis's Sebastian.
Though technically a period drama, the movie toys with the genre and turns it on its head, with Oldroyd describing it as "Wuthering Heights meets Kill Bill." It has more in common with a modern revenge drama than a Victorian romance, yet the tension between the two is what ultimately creates its unique edge. A powerful, at times brutal, portrayal of a woman driven to extremes in search of autonomy.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about how Lady Macbeth portrayed sex. Was it affectionate? Respectful? Parents, talk to your teens about your own values regarding sex and relationships.
Discuss the violence in the movie. Did the violent scenes help tell the story in an effective way? Was it shocking or thrilling? Why? Does exposure to violent media desensitize kids to violence?
Talk about the strong language in the movie. Did it seem necessary or excessive? What did it contribute to the movie?
Discuss the different ways in which power is abused by different characters. How do the rules inside Katherine's home reflect the society of the time?
- In theaters: July 14, 2017
- On DVD or streaming: October 3, 2017
- Cast: Florence Pugh, Cosmo Jarvis, Paul Hilton
- Director: William Oldroyd
- Studio: Roadside Attractions
- Genre: Drama
- Run time: 89 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: some disturbing violence, strong sexuality/nudity, and language
- Last updated: December 23, 2022
Our Editors Recommend
Sofia Coppola's Civil War drama is powerful, primal.
Wuthering Heights (2012)
Contemplative adaptation focuses on teen passion and angst.
Violent folk horror with a feminist edge has graphic sex.
For kids who love romance
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