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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The movie is about the power struggle between men and women. It places a great deal of stress on looks, especially female looks.
Positive Role Models
None of the three main characters takes the high road; their methods are usually pushy, controlling, or underhanded. A woman refuses to let herself be put down or controlled by a man, but she does so in not-particularly-admirable ways. The male lead is a respected and accomplished dressmaker, but he's not a very nice person most of the time.
Violence & Scariness
Arguing. Attempts at poisoning.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Suggestion of sex (offscreen). Passionate kiss. Women are shown dressing and undressing, down to their underwear; sometimes nipples are visible.
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Uses of "f--k" and "f--king," plus "hell."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A minor character gets drunk and passes out. Social drinking. Smoking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Phantom Thread is a drama from director Paul Thomas Anderson that's set in the fashion world of London of the 1950s. The main character, Reynolds Woodcock (Daniel Day-Lewis), is a couture icon and something of a womanizer -- until he meets one special woman. There's not a ton of iffy content, but the overall themes are fairly mature. Sex isn't shown, but it's suggested. Characters kiss, and there's some semi-nudity when women try on clothes and are shown in sheer underwear. Language includes a few heated uses of "f--k" and "f--king," as well as "hell." A minor character drinks until she passes out, and there's additional social drinking and smoking. Characters struggle for power in a largely negative way, arguing with, commanding, and even poisoning others. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Director Paul Thomas Anderson takes a break from films that are trying to "say something" to return to a story about people; this is one of his best, most beautiful, and most perverse works. Presented elegantly and slowly, Phantom Thread moves around Reynolds Woodcock's glorious mansion and work space, taking in all his intricate threadwork and admiring every drape and fold of the material. It's Jonny Greenwood's score that provides the sinister, anxious quality that lurks just under the exquisite surface. In certain ways, the movie is almost Hitchcockian.
Stripped of makeup and mannerisms, Day-Lewis gives something close to a basic human performance, but it's still commanding; his seductive use of masculinity recalls his earlier role in The Unbearable Lightness of Being. Manville stands out, too, locking her passions inside a starchy, austere character but still capable of doing so much with her eyes and sour line readings. It's refreshing that the movie avoids hysterics and major plot twists; it stays largely within the house and largely focused on these three characters as they subtly try to one-up each other's level of power. It's a grand movie, but it's also subtle and mischievous.
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.