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Parents' Guide to

Sleeping Beauty (2011)

By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Creepy erotic drama about sedated girls has little meaning.

Movie NR 2011 101 minutes
Sleeping Beauty (2011) Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 17+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 15+

The page review does not do the film justice.

I think this review in particular has missed the point of the film entirely. It isn't just pure titillation and the one-central plot point of Lucy becoming a Sleeping Beauty. While the themes are sexually based, the message is more focused on the objectification of women and how Lucy is so completely unencumbered by her own encounters outside of the job. If you look at it from her point of view, she lives a lifestyle already detrimental to her well-being, and she has no understanding of what goes on when she falls asleep, all she knows is that she gets paid. This isn't even completely about the men in the film. While there are perverted pigs like the second gentleman we see with Lucy in her sleeping state, we see softer men, like the first who has a soliloquy based on "The thirtieth year". His performance alone puts Lucy's job into question for the viewer. Some men are doing this for their own personal, deeper reasons. However, the themes do extend to dark areas such as Lucy's indifference to her sexual partner, having her decision made for her by the flip of a coin, and her debilitating drug use. It's all about context. In any other film, yes, the atmosphere and mood conveyed through the themes would mean condemnation and brandings of pornography or titillation, however there is just, something, about this film, and the obvious depth yet subtle lack of personality to Lucy's character which creates a juxtaposition. The viewer never knows what Lucy is thinking, and her motives remain unclear for the length of the film. However, 2 stars is simply wrong for this movie. If you think it's boring, go and watch an action film. This is art, clear and unrestricted, and to brand or even review it as anything else is ignorant.

This title has:

Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
1 person found this helpful.
age 18+

NEVER WATCH THIS (Too much Nudity)

This title has:

Too much sex

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5 ):
Kids say (5 ):

Screenwriter and first-time director Julia Leigh is clearly going for an art-house experience in SLEEPING BEAUTY. Lucy seems to be sleepwalking through her life, taking a series of dead-end jobs (an office drone, a waitress, a volunteer for campus medical experiments) but not actually living. Searching for sensation, she's game for casual drug use and no-strings-attached sex, but otherwise it's hard to tell anything about this blank slate of a character.

The film is trying to make a statement about choosing to live life vs. choosing to check out and just go through the motions. Problem is, the message is pretty obvious, while the film is tedious and dull. It's got plenty of nudity and disturbing sex scenes (Lucy lies still, inert, while others fondle her). And by making Lucy so passive, both awake and asleep, there's nothing that makes her interesting to viewers. Will she discover the joy in life? Will she actually become involved in a real relationship? We don't know, and, because of the lack of storytelling, we don't much care.

Movie Details

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