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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
A dysfunctional family, still mourning the death of a loved one, unravels during a wedding weekend. Feelings are honestly aired, and the words sting. But there's also a whole lot of love going around, and not just because the central event is a wedding. Though angry with each other and deeply confused, relatives clearly care for each other and wish each other well.
Violence & Scariness
Screaming and arguing among family members. At one point, two relatives actually get physical, and it's ugly, though very telling. A character purposefully drives straight into a street sign and beyond.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Two people who are virtual strangers have a quick tryst in a dark room (hardly any nudity shown). Some suggestive dancing.
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Frequent strong language includes "f--k," "s--t" "c--ksucker," and "bastard."
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Products & Purchases
Some mentions of Rite Aid, the Olympic Games, and the TV series Cops. Pellegrino bottles are displayed prominently.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
The central character is a former junkie, and there's frank conversation about things she's done while high. She also smokes. Several scenes show Narcotics Anonymous meetings; the 12-step process is referred to often. Some social drinking during a wedding and rehearsal dinner.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this intense family drama addresses certain subjects -- drug addiction, death, family dysfunction -- that may be overwhelming for younger teens who are drawn to it by Anne Hathaway's star power. But they're dealt with so sensitively and compassionately that older teens may find the film quite impactful. Expect plenty of swearing and social drinking (as well as discussions about alcoholism and drug use). Characters also explore dark emotional terrain, and adult family members are hurtful -- verbally and physically -- to each other. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
RACHEL GETTING MARRIED is stunningly moving, though there will be viewers who will be frustrated by its pace. It takes its time to blossom, dwelling on moments that many other, lesser films would have skipped (the dishwasher contest, the musical interludes). But in making that artistic decision, director Jonathan Demme manages to get us so invested in his characters that it feels like whatever's happening onscreen is happening to us, and we're unquestionably moved. Long after the credits roll, we'll still be thinking about it.
Kudos belongs to so many: To Hathaway, for reminding us once more -- after Brokeback Mountain -- of her deep well of talent (her big eyes and nearly too-gaunt face serve her well in such a haunting -- and haunted -- role). To the rest of the ensemble for turning in such fine-tuned performances, neither overplaying nor underacting. To the masterful Demme, who allowed the script to breathe. And to screenwriter Jenny Lumet (daughter of acclaimed director Sidney Lumet). One of the things that makes a screenwriter great is the ability to tell the truth, which Lumet does beautifully. If only every wedding ceremony was as unorthodox, as stirring as this one.
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Our Editors Recommend
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