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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The characters generally mean well, but they take everything from sex to drug use very casually.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Characters are shown engaging in casual sex with multiple partners. One character has an HIV scare.
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Products & Purchases
Characters explicitly discuss the merits of the Big Gulp. Dominos is mentioned and is featured in the narrative as is Evian.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters are shown smoking cigarettes and marijuana and drinking beer and other alcohol.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this film features 20-something recent college graduates who drink, smoke, and sleep around. There are few consequences for their behavior, save for a very mild subplot in which one of the characters takes an AIDS test (she tests negative). However, the characters generally mean well, and parents who don't object to depictions of sex and drug/alcohol use may find their behavior towards each other acceptable. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Overall, the movie is not without charm or laughs, and although the ending is supposed to be happy, it is rather shallow. Anyone over 25 will find the main characters rather insufferable, while those under 25 might find it dated.
And boy, oh boy do the characters who inhabit Reality Bites love to talk. They talk about their love lives, their search for meaningful work, their favorite TV shows. They talk about their lame parents, their boring jobs, their slacker friends. It's not that all the talk isn't occasionally amusing; on the contrary, the dialogue is smart and bubblegum-culture-savvy enough to provoke chuckles amongst Gen X parents. It's just that the characters take themselves so incredibly seriously, and never shut up.
Did we miss something on diversity?
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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