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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The movie deals with the search for identity and belonging, and how that can sometimes be internal. It also teaches the importance of knowing and understanding personal and cultural history. Communication and curiosity are also on display.
Positive Role Models
The main character, Kit, is polite and kind and wants to learn more about his birth country and his heritage. He keeps his emotions close to his chest, but is able to be more honest and open when he makes a connection with a man he dates. The Vietnamese people Kit meets are respectful and helpful, though show the tension between the older generation and those born after the war.
Violence & Scariness
There is mention of the war and re-education camps, as well as the death of parents and shots of an urn with ashes inside.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Characters kiss and embrace shirtless and there is the implication of sexual intercourse, though it is not shown.
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Occasional language includes "f--k," "f--ker," and "f--king."
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Products & Purchases
Advertisements are seen on buildings and the sides of taxis, but not consistently for the same things.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters regularly drink alcohol in bars and at home. Cigarettes are smoked on occasion.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Monsoon is a slow-burn drama about a British-Vietnamese man, Kit (Henry Golding), who returns to his birth country after the death of his parents. The movie references the war and focuses on the emigrant experience and feelings of displacement. Infrequent strong language includes various uses of the word "f--k." Alcohol is consumed numerous times and characters occasionally smoke cigarettes. Some sexual references include shirtless kissing between Kit and Lewis (Parker Sawyers) -- a man he meets in Vietnam -- and there is the implication of sex. There are no great peaks in the drama, with the film maintaining a slow, steady pace that may fail to grip younger viewers. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
A reflective, almost dreamlike delicacy floats throughout this beautifully shot drama that integrates the emigrant experience with a personal search for understanding. More tension can be found in the stark contrast between the bustling cityscapes and the stillness and silence of Kit's hotel room than much of the rest of Monsoon, which shows a brave restraint in its lingering shots and unrushed narrative. That we are only gifted one side of Kit's FaceTime conversations only adds to the sense of displacement and isolation so well crafted by director Hong Khaou alongside Golding's pared-down performance.
The locations are so vividly brought to life that there is almost a travelogue feel, the audience discovering the cities and history alongside the main character. While the narrative doesn't offer much in terms of emotional highs or, in fact, a particularly strong resolution, this just serves to reflect the nature of Kit's experience and his search to fully understand things that may never be resolved.
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.