Parents' Guide to

Safe Haven

By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Predictable romantic drama deals with pretty heavy themes.

Movie PG-13 2013 115 minutes
Safe Haven Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 18+

Perfect Date Night Flick For Adults!

I was expecting this movie to be just another chick-flick romance, but since this film adds thrill and mystery to a typically cheesy genre, I find myself enjoying it a lot more. It is directed by Lasse Hallstrom, who also directed "What's Eating Gilbert Grape" which is one of my favorite movies. I really enjoy Lasse's style when it comes to scenery and direction, so I find the cinematography in this film to be very beautiful and picturesque. I also enjoy the soundtrack to this movie because it has the perfect balance of sappy romantic melodies, as well as suspenseful pieces to fit the mood of each scene. The one thing that really bothers me about this movie is the end. There is a pretty substantial plot twist in the middle of the movie, but then another one is thrown in at the very last scene. It is completely unnecessary and takes the film from being relatively realistic, to being totally unrealistic. I hate to say this, but it's just dumb. My favorite character is Tierney (David Lyons.) He is a detective who plays a major part in the plot, and he has by far the most convincing performance. Every time he comes on the screen, I get this creepy feeling that he isn't exactly what he seems. The main thing I look for when it comes to acting is whether or not the actors are able to make the audience feel something, and David definitely succeeds. I recommend Safe Haven for audiences ages 13 and up, due to mature content, such as violence and abuse. Ages 13-18 will get the most enjoyment out of it, but it would also be a perfect date night flick for adults. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars, so go check out Safe Haven! Raven Devanney, age 15, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 12+

Really good romance/thriller

I personally loved this film. One day my kid was asking what I wanted to watch with her and I recommended this. She liked the look of it so we tried it out and she loved it! It was quite creepy, but not too scary - she was 12 when we watched it, and I was there to make sure she didn't get too scared! I think that this film has a really good message and great role models, and definitely taught my daughter about being safe and getting out of unhealthy relationships. It's a good romance film as well, with one sex scene that's very mild and doesn't show much. There is a big twist about what Katie had done, and another twist at the very end of the film. Overall very enjoyable! My kid actually watched this film with one of her friends because she wanted to share it - her friend was also 12 - and she enjoyed it too!

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (11):
Kids say (21):

By now, it's clear that Sparks has a fan base for whom a movie like this is especially formulated. You can pretty much predict the bits that are sure to appear: footage of gorgeous sunsets, a mysterious stranger pulling into town, a gallant man drawn to a gentle woman, a secret that tears them apart, an obstacle that, really, isn't much of one. Yes, it's all here.

Director Lasse Hallström knows how to paint with light; his canvas is strewn with vibrant hues (except for when he's denoting an evil presence, in which case scenes are drained of color, of course, because, well, evil). But all of the pretty cinematography and dark undertones can't save Safe Haven from its sickly-sweet core. We're all for heartfelt romance, but audiences deserve for them to be much smarter than this.

Movie Details

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