A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Themes include courageously standing up for what you believe in and fighting for women's rights. The image of beauty is explored as being diverse and not abiding by old-fashioned preconceptions. Integrity, perseverance, and teamwork are also all on display. Some sexist behavior.
Positive Role Models
Sally fights against the image of her as a stay-at-home mother by studying at university. Jo is determined to create a more equal society that offers the same opportunities to women as it does men. The Miss World contenders are empowered -- they are in control of their own agency and their beauty.
Violence & Scariness
During the protest at the Miss World competition, objects are thrown on stage and the host is threatened with a "fake" gun. A character hits a police officer on the head.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Judges and crowds of spectators are shown gawping at the Miss World contenders, as they parade around on stage in their swimsuits. Some characters make sexist comments and objectify others.
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Use of the word "bloody."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Frequent smoking and some drinking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Misbehaviour is an uplifting British drama based on the real events surrounding the 1970 Miss World competition. It contains plenty of positive messages, including standing up for what you believe in. During the competition, women parade around in swimsuits on stage for the male gaze. But the movie is incredibly critical of this old-fashioned culture -- sexist comments and the objectification of women. The portrayal of the protestors are that of regular, working women and students fighting to create a more equal society. Sally (Keira Knightley) is also applauded for chasing her dreams as an academic, at odds with societal pressures of the time to merely be a housewife. In one scene, the protests include objects being thrown on stage and the brandishing of a "fake" gun. A character then hits a policeman over the head. As befits the time period, characters smoke frequently and there is some drinking but no depiction of drunkenness. The movie offers a striking look into how far we've come since the 1970s, while admitting that there's still a long way to go. The Miss World contenders are seen as being empowered, and their beauty is diverse and celebrated for being so. The movie should inspire young girls, and boys for that matter. The only profanity in the movie is the word "bloody." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This movie enters sensitive and interesting territory that is delicately tackled, and creates a nuanced and layered drama. Knightley and Mbatha-Raw impress, and while the movie can be accused of being quite cliche at times, it's enriched by a strong, and sadly still relevant storyline.
Misbehaviour follows in a long line of uplifting British dramas, in the same vein as Made in Dagenham and Suffragette, though perhaps just abides by convention a little too much. It's a fascinating story for director Philippa Lowthorpe to untangle, because the issue is a complex one. Naturally we side with the female protestors, risking everything to help create a fairer society. But is the Miss World event the right place to start? Contestant Jennifer Hosten (Mbatha-Raw) isn't so sure, for she feels any success she may have would inspire young black girls to realize that their beauty is valued, and shouldn't just accept what they see in movies and magazines.
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.
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