Some Freaks

Movie review by
Yvonne Condes, Common Sense Media
Some Freaks Movie Poster Image
Heartbreaking, mature teen romance will stay with you.
  • NR
  • 2017
  • 97 minutes

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

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The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

The story has an underlying message of empathy and compassion, but the characters don't always demonstrate those qualities.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Jill is smart, strong, and confident, even though she sometimes lets her bullies get the best of her. Matt, Jill, and Elmo turn on each other with cruel words and actions. Many characters behave poorly. Matt's sister tries to be there for him while also working and raising her daughter. Characters represent a range of physical abilities and body types, but the cast isn't particularly ethnically/racially diverse.


Kids are shoved around and bullied. Matt tries to force-feed Jill, and she hits him. A man is hit with a baseball bat. Matt loses his glass eye. One character kisses his crush when the crush is passed out.


Characters have sex and perform oral sex; frank talk about sex. Partial nudity includes part of a breast, a naked back, and a man's chest. A fraternity hosts a "cattle call" party for pledges to have sex with girls they think are overweight. A character struggles with accepting his sexuality.


Lots of swearing, including "f--k," "s--t," "a--hole." Harsh insults about sexual orientation, weight, physical disabilities.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Characters smoke and drink, a couple of times excessively. A character passes out from drinking.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Some Freaks is a gritty story about young adult life for misfit Rhode Island teens. Matt, who's tormented for wearing an eye patch, falls in love with Jill, who's bullied because of her weight. But their sweet romance is tested when Jill transforms in college. Expect sex scenes (with some partial nudity -- including part of a breast, a back, and a man's chest), as well as frank talk about sex. Language is frequent and strong, with "f--k," "s--t," and more used. Characters are bullied, and young people are cruel to one another (a fraternity hosts a "cattle call" party for pledges to have sex with girls they think are overweight). There are scenes of smoking and drinking, the latter sometimes to excess. One character kisses his crush while the crush is passed out. This is edgy stuff, but there's an underlying message of compassion and empathy, and adults and older teens will be left with a lot to talk about.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byMarie Chang November 5, 2019

Young teens will enjoy!

I watched this with my 11 and 14 year old girls. They loved it. As we are a plus-sized family, we really appreciate all of the inclusive cast sizing. The Common... Continue reading

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What's the story?

In SOME FREAKS, Matt (Thomas Mann), a lonely teenager who wears an eye patch, is tormented at school and doesn't find much solace at home, either. He falls in love with the cool new girl, Jill (Lilly Mae Harrington), who's also bullied -- in her case, for carrying a few extra pounds. Jill's cousin and Matt's best friend, Elmo (Ely Henry), doesn't have it much better: he's struggling with his sexuality and figuring out how to be himself. Then, when Jill transforms herself in college, Matt has to figure out where he fits in.

Is it any good?

This drama starts out as a sweet coming-of-age story centered around three teens that viewers will be rooting for from the start, but then things turn dark. When Jill goes to college, she loses a lot of weight -- and Matt can't deal with her transformation. The characters' problems are universal -- teens dealing with bullies, body image, and sexuality -- but the devastating turn their lives take makes Some Freaks more than your average teen flick.

Harrington is heartbreaking as Jill. She's proud to have lost 50 pounds, but it doesn't really make her life any easier. When Matt discovers she's not who he thought she was, he can't take it. And we can't bear the pain they cause each other. You'll want to take Mann home by the end of the film and give him a hug. The film's tragic ending is brutal and full of unanswered questions. You won't be able to shake writer/director Ian MacAllister McDonald's powerful commentary on what it's like to grow up today when you're less than perfect.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how Some Freaks depicts bullying. Why are the characters tormented? Does it seem realistic? What are your options in a situation like this?

  • How does the movie portray sex and substance use? Are there realistic consequences? Why is that important?

  • Elmo kisses his crush after the boy passes out. Is it ever appropriate to touch someone who can't consent to it? 

  • How does the story show the importance of compassion and empathy? Why are those important character strengths?

  • Patrick is peer-pressured by his fraternity brothers into doing something very hurtful. Have you ever been pressured to go along with something you didn't want to do? How did you handle it?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love teen dramas

Character Strengths

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