A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Not Cool is a crass, raunchy film about college kids at home for Thanksgiving break that has explicit, graphic sexual language, a scene involving oral sex in a bathroom, a few instances of simulated masturbation, drinking and smoking weed, lots of uses of "f--k," and a generally porn-ified treatment of its subject. It's rife with stereotypes and jokes about mental illness, obesity, and rape and several references to excrement. A woman is vomited on multiple times. Though its meant to be a coming-of-age comedy in the vein of American Pie, it's all the crassness with none of the heart.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Scott (Shane Dawson) is back home for Thanksgiving break, only to find out he's been dumped. Luckily, he finds a burgeoning friendship in former classmate Tori, who has changed a lot since her days as an acne-ridden high school geek. As they explore the possibility of a new, more adult relationship, they must confront the past, their high school reputations, their hometown life, and whether it's possible to forgive and forget.
Is it any good?
NOT COOL is what happens when you make a movie that's curiously devoid of human connection. It lacks what movies such as American Pie or Superbad arguably have: a warmth and nostalgia for a certain kind of coming of age as well as more believable relationships. Here, nearly every character is out for him or herself, awash in a pose of trendy quippy-ness, ironic detachment, and mean-spiritedness that keeps everyone one-dimensional. Plus, the jokes aren't funny; they are racist, sexist, homophobic, or gross as a general rule.
Teens who like comedies in this vein may find a few vulgarly funny jokes to keep them interested, but unless they're prepping for a film major and want to learn the ins and outs of how not to do raunch, there's virtually nothing of substance, comedically or otherwise, to glean here.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the film's deliberately politically incorrect stance. Does this serve the film in any way?
Underneath the jokes that target every possible minority group, is there any heart to this movie? Does it ring true as a story about young people? Why, or why not?
Do these characters seem believable or relatable? Why, or why not?
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