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Parents' Guide to

Shake, Rattle and Rock!

By Tracy Moore, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Colorless '50s remake is all suggestiveness and no depth.

Movie PG-13 1994 83 minutes
Shake, Rattle and Rock! Poster Image

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This movie aims to capture the zeitgeist of the 1950s through a 1990s haze of nostalgia, but it all ends up being rather superficial. There's all the touchstone poodle skirts and leather jackets and square adults not hip to the new tunes, but in an effort to camp up the era's zany times, it misses out on anything like depth or real commentary on what it was all about. Instead, it feels like bits of dialogue are tossed into a series of musical numbers that -- although some are good, particularly the ones with the African-American quartet -- tell us very little about the reality of teens growing up in the era, even in a comedic or tongue-in-cheek way, that hasn't been done better elsewhere. Here, there are rebels or squares and not much in between, nor any effort made to understand them. Parents who don't mind that surface treatment should note that there's some era-specific racism, casual smoking, and the suggestiveness of burgeoning sexual liberation to come. Unfortunately, those things are used in place of better characters or a more compelling plotline.

Movie Details

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