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Parents' Guide to

Life in a Day

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Insightful docu features thousands of YouTube clips.

Movie PG-13 2011 93 minutes
Life in a Day Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 10+


PERFECTO! makes you appreciate life more.
age 12+

A great snapshot of our world

This is a phenominal project that puts together footage from all over the world. By the way, it is not YouTube videos, but rather a project of collaboration from videographers, and regular people all around the world. It has also continued annually and people can sign up to participate. It really tells a great story if you look beyond the simple clips.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (3 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Parts of this "we are one big global family" experiment work incredibly, if predictably, well. One great example is the quickly edited scenes of people eating, drinking, and moving against their various cultural backdrops. Some of the people we see a bit longer than others are poignant as they try to share snippets of life -- walking around in Kabul, filming their son's first shave, coming out to their grandmother on the phone. Other aspects of the movie may raise a cynic's eyebrow -- did we really need to see the smug look of satisfaction on face of the middle-aged-man who drives a Lamborghini? -- or lose viewers with short attention spans.

Parents will particularly enjoy the segments that feature families. One of the funniest videos is of the hilarious 50th anniversary vow renewal of an English couple named Ann and John; the priest asks Ann on John's behalf "Will you do that thing you promised you'd let John do on his 40th birthday, but still have not yet done?" In contrast, a newlywed couple is shown being toasted by their best man, who explains that when two creatures live together, they should expect to mate, but also some blood. Another favorite shows a clueless new father attempting to quote Walt Whitman while his exhausted wife holds their newborn twins and snaps at him to stop being selfish and come watch the babies. Ultimately, the idea that human beings are all more similar than they are different isn't that original, but the film is still an insigtful, worthy reminder that all of us take it one day at a time.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: July 24, 2011
  • On DVD or streaming: November 8, 2011
  • Directors: Joseph Michael , Kevin Macdonald
  • Studio: National Geographic
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Run time: 93 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13
  • MPAA explanation: disturbing violent images, language and a sexual reference
  • Last updated: February 25, 2022

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