A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this realistic coming-of-age story uses sexual identity as a means of exploring the complex and often painful emotions associated with self-discovery and acceptance. The two leading characters are high school girls who fall in love and have to come to terms with being different. Sexual content includes a few kisses (girl-girl and boy-girl), a moment of implied off-camera masturbation, teens discussing sex (including "Did it hurt?" and a mention of anal sex), and some partial nudity (boys seen in communal shower from rear and a poster of a bare-breasted woman hanging in a boy's room). There's frequent coarse language in Swedish (English subtitles): "f--king," "p---y," "s--t," "hell," "dyke," and more. The heroine uses a disposable razor in a feeble attempt to cut her wrists, but, after a little blood appears, she stops. Underage kids smoke and drink wine on several occasions, with some consequences.
What's the story?
In Amal, a small town in Sweden, lonely Agnes (Rebecka Liljeberg) is celebrating her 16th birthday; beautiful and popular Elin (Alexandra Dahlström) is bored and looking for excitement. A mean prank brings the two girls together. Amidst the turmoil, insecurity, and scariness of growing up, they experience the consequences of being different, the courage it takes to be true to themselves, and the sweetness of first love. Their families and friends respond to Agnes and Elin's journey in a variety of ways, all reflecting a naturalness and integrity that makes the film feel authentic and relevant.
Is it any good?
A huge box office success in Sweden (where it's known by its original title, F--king Amal) this movie (with English subtitles) treats adolescence with tenderness and respect. The story is simple; the characters are beautifully drawn and well acted. The delicate subject matter -- coming of age along with early awareness and exploration of sexual identity -- should resonate with thoughtful teens and their families.
Though the movie hasn't been rated by the MPAA, the film contains strong language and deals with sexual situations presented in a way that assumes maturity and compassion.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the effects of bullying and teasing. Have you ever been made fun of or embarrassed by others? What did you do? Does this movie portray the effect of bullying accurately? How can you express your beliefs without being hurtful to others?
What are your feelings about movies from other countries? How are the Swedish kids portrayed differently than the kids in your community? How are they similar?
Does this movie feel truthful to you? How do the filmmakers make it feel real? Does it change any of your opinions about kids who are different?
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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.
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