A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Negative examples show the down side of putting your ambition above everything else. It's also possible to infer that you should be careful what you wish for, because you'll pay a heavy price to have your wish granted and there will be unintended consequences.
Positive Role Models
Juliet lets her ambition and jealousy drive her to extremes. Her twin sister Vivian is supportive but condescending toward Juliet, and is having an affair with her teacher. Their parents are frivolous and pay lip service to supporting their daughters' careers in music while not really believing it has value. Except for the principal, adult faculty members at the prestigious boarding school are mysterious and flawed. The twin sisters are white, but students and faculty at the school are diverse and include a Black woman as the principal.
Violence & Scariness
A couple of depictions of suicide by showing someone stepping off a high ledge. A bloody face and mangled body are shown in the aftermath of one. Disturbing images, like a bloody face and head with half the skull missing. An accidental fall from a cliff shows the person at the bottom with limbs at wrong angles. A teacher slaps a student in the face. An accident shows a head banging hard on a piano. A couple of instances of bloody images related to menstruation like bloody legs, bloody bedsheets, and a pile of bloody tampons used in a prank.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A sex scene shows kissing, taking tops off, a bare male torso, and simulated sex with no sensitive body parts shown. A couple of other kisses, including a teen kissing a teacher. A couple of female characters wear low-cut tops once or twice. A medieval-style drawing shows a couple having sex, the only body parts shown in the picture are a woman's breasts. Mention that a student is in a sexual relationship with a teacher. The teacher says he didn't do anything she didn't consent to.
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"S--t," "f--king," "p---y," "t--ts," "c--kless," and "bitch."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Teens have wine and champagne at dinner in a restaurant. An adult gives a teen a glass of brown liquor. A teen frequently takes prescription medication for anxiety, clearly showing her taking three pills at a time that are later revealed to be Propanolol. A teen is shown smoking a joint and rolling a cigarette, implying that it's marijuana. At a party, a teen gives another a baggie of unspecified contents. Teens share a pill at a party and the point of view of one shows eerie, distorted images. Later she vomits. An adult lights a cigarette. Several adults smoke cigarettes at a dinner party.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Nocturne (2020) is a horror movie about twin sisters at a prestigious performing-arts school who both dream of becoming famous concert pianists. There are disturbing images, including some bloody ones, and an eerie, tense atmosphere and music. There are depictions of suicide, with teens stepping off high ledges, and the aftermath of one shows a bloody face and mangled body. An accidental fall shows limbs at odd angles. A teacher slaps a student in the face. Several bloody images, some relating to menstruation. Strong language includes "s--t," "f--king," "p---y," and "c--kless." A teen takes what is likely an overdose of prescription medication for anxiety several times. Teens smoke marijuana and exchange a baggie at a party. Teens drink alcohol with adults. Adults briefly shown smoking cigarettes. A student is in a sexual relationship with a teacher. A sex scene shows kissing, taking tops off, a bare male torso, and simulated sex with no sensitive body parts shown. A couple of other kisses, including a teen kissing a teacher. A medieval-style drawing shows a couple having sex, the only body parts shown in the picture are a woman's breasts. The supporting cast is fairly diverse, showing many Asian and Black students and faculty. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Despite a solid, if not very original premise, this horror movie never manages to build up much momentum, dread, or excitement. Nocturne (2020) is pretty slow paced, and expect lots of shots of piano playing in between disturbing images. The biggest problem, though, is that almost every twist or event is broadcast well ahead of time, so the only real surprises are the visual ones, and they aren't all that strong, either. Fans of horror movies are likely to be disappointed, and it's unlikely to win anyone over who wasn't already a fan.
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.