Father and child sit together smiling while looking at a smart phone.

Want more recommendations for your family?

Sign up for our weekly newsletter for entertainment inspiration

Parents' Guide to


By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Intelligent, educational, but very long, dry history lesson.

Movie PG-13 2019 154 minutes
Peterloo Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

There aren't any parent reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: Not yet rated
Kids say: Not yet rated

Director Mike Leigh is a master of character-based dramas, but this long period epic doesn't really bother with characters; it focuses instead on arguments and speeches ... lots of speeches. Peterloo is intelligently written, and the dialogue sounds fine; history buffs who already know the story may be enthralled by the down-to-brass-tacks approach. But it isn't a dynamic movie -- it feels dry and static. It doesn't move or engage the same way that something like Steven Spielberg's Lincoln did. Part of the problem is the enormous tapestry of faces that passes before the camera; you're likely to have very little idea of who anyone is or know who's going to stick around.

Some characters who seem like they're going to be important simply disappear, and others are introduced so quickly that it takes a while to realize who they are. Meanwhile, the government men and royalty are portrayed as absolute monsters. (An awkward maid named Bessie is the only real standout, getting a few small laughs in her couple of scenes.) Another problem is that, while the dialogue feels historically accurate -- and appropriately, righteously angry -- it's mostly just shouting and debating. Rarely, if ever, does a character say something about who they actually are, which is the polar opposite of how other Leigh movies (Vera Drake, Happy-Go-Lucky, Another Year, Mr. Turner) operate. As one character complains in one scene, it's all "talk, talk, talk," and no action.

Movie Details

Inclusion information powered by

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.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate