Nancy Drew

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Nancy Drew Movie Poster Image
Big-screen teen sleuth is cute, if a bit bland.
  • PG
  • 2007
  • 99 minutes
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 9+
Based on 32 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 42 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Shows that persistance, ingenuity, and smarts pay off. Plus a message about being yourself.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Nancy is a great role model for girls: She's fearless, smart, and conscientious. She's also a really good kid -- except when it comes to her father's request that she stop sleuthing.

Violence & Scariness

Nancy is nearly killed a few times -- first in a car chase and later at gunpoint by a bad guy and his henchmen. Men are hit over the head with a shovel.

Sexy Stuff

One brief kiss; two girls wear tight outfits and flirt with Ned; Corky hits on Nancy.

Language

Fairly mild language/insults: "what the hell," "freak," "idiot," "oh God," "porky," etc.

Consumerism

Several prominent product placements: Mac laptop, IMDB.com, AOL, Amtrak, InStyle magazine, Hollywood High, etc.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

There's a rowdy high-school party, but no one seems to be drinking -- just dancing and carrying on.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the big-screen Nancy Drew is very retro and straightlaced. And although she's being marketed to older tweens and young teens, even slightly younger kids will enjoy the teenage sleuth's harmless action. There are a few "good scary" moments (a face pops up in a dark room), and even though Nancy is forced to flee from armed henchmen and is even held at gunpoint, she never really seems like she'd be the victim of anything. It's worth noting that there are several prominent product placements, mostly computer and Internet related.

User Reviews

Adult Written byLoriL April 9, 2008

Very disappointing

I saw this movie in the theater with my 10-year-old daughter. We were very much looking forward to this movie since my daughter reads Nancy Drew books and plays... Continue reading
Parent of a 7 year old Written bycitymom April 9, 2008

Major theme is out-of-wedlock pregnancy!

I was so shocked that of all mysteries, Nancy Drew was caught up in one involving unwed pregnancy, secret childbirth, who's the father, etc.!! I knew ther... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old April 3, 2017
I really liked this movie! It had great twists and turns just like in the book series. I'd say it WAS a little scary when the professor threatened to kill... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old March 27, 2010

An Awesome Fun Movie you Can't Miss

I absolutely LOVE this movie! I watch it all the time! In this movie Nancy and her father move to California into a house that Nancy chose, of course with a m... Continue reading

What's the story?

Nancy and her dad, Carson (Tate Donovan), leave their Midwestern hometown of River Heights for Los Angeles, where they stay in a mysterious mansion in which a beautiful Hollywood star named Dehlia Draycott (Laura Elena Harring) wound up dead. Nancy has promised her dad that, instead of sleuthing, she'll try to be "normal" -- if that's possible in 2007 for an 18-year-old who wears penny loafers and twin-sets to a Hollywood high school. But eventually she can't help herself, and she starts digging away at the circumstances surrounding Dehlia's death. With the aid of an obnoxious, adoring 12-year-old freshman named Corky (Josh Flitter), her low-tech detective kit, her signature blue roadster, and her cute-but-completely-uncharismatic (boy)friend Ned (Max Thieriot), Nancy has everything a girl needs to solve a 25-year-old mystery.

Is it any good?

Updated by director Andrew Fleming in the form of perky Emma Roberts, the likable Nancy Drew is equal parts goody-two-shoes and intuitive investigator. As the throwback "sleuth" (an anachronistic word in and of itself), Roberts is an excellent role model for obedience and good citizenship, but there's a certain oomph missing in this modernized take on the teen detective.

But the bigger puzzle is how Roberts -- who stars in her own Nickelodeon show, Unfabulous, and is Julia's niece -- doesn't make Nancy as vibrant and endearing as she was on the page. Sure, she's sweet, and she proves that girls don't need guys to save them from peril, but her adolescent Sherlock Holmes isn't engaging enough to merit another movie mystery.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what makes Nancy a good role model for tween and teen girls. How does she compare to other movie characters -- or real-life "role models" like Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton?

  • Why did the other girls in the movie make fun of Nancy, and what made them change their mind?

Movie details

Themes & Topics

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