Stuck in Love

  • Review Date: July 3, 2013
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2013
  • Running Time: 97 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Thoughtful family drama has some teen drinking/drug use.
  • Review Date: July 3, 2013
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2013
  • Running Time: 97 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages
A rather complex message about opening your heart; i.e., it helps to open it a lot if you want to be a great writer, but it can also hurt a great deal. Characters in the movie are all searching for their own identities, artistic and otherwise, while still hanging onto family relationships and exploring romantic ones. There's also a small anti-drug message in the form of one of the minor characters.
Positive role models
Three of the main characters are writers, and their trials and successes may encourage or inspire teens with a yen for writing. Overall the characters are fairly complex, and they often fail to do the right thing while struggling with their identities, lives, and loves.
Violence
A couple of quick, mild fistfights. A teen punches a bully; later, the bully punches him back. The result isn't much more than bloody noses. In another scene, an adut assaults a teen boy by violently grabbing his nose, forcing him down, and then kicking him. (Although in the context of the scene, it could be argued that the boy deserved this; the man is trying to save the life of another teen.) Some arguing.
Sex
All three of the main characters are sexually active. The father pines for his ex-wife while occasionally sleeping with a married neighbor; their lovemaking is shown and heard, but no nudity is seen. A teen girl is said to be promiscuous, though her sex acts are never shown. A teen boy finds a girlfriend, and she seduces him in a closet -- though, again, nothing is actually shown.
Language
Language is fairly strong, though not constant; words heard include "f--k," "s--t," "goddamn," "a--hole," "p---y," and "bitch."
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
A teen supporting character is shown to be a drug addict and a cocaine user. Viewers see her snorting cocaine in a bathroom at a party; she checks into rehab by the movie's end. A teen boy smokes pot fairly regularly and comes home drunk several times; his character is seen as "blowing off steam" rather than being an addict. Other characters are seen drinking wine at dinner or other drinks in bars. An adult character smokes cigarettes.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Stuck in Love is a drama filled with complex, flawed characters and interesting relationships. Though it features older teens as characters, the material is pretty edgy; a supporting teen character is shown to be a drug addict and a cocaine user, and the main characters drink and smoke pot regularly. The three main characters are also sexually active, though only the adult is shown having sex (no nudity). Language is strong, too, with several uses of "f--k," "s--t," and other words. Violence includes three brief fistfights that result in bloody noses. Even though it goes a bit over the top at one point, ultimately this is an unusually intuitive movie about writers, so teens interested in writing as a profession may be interested.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Divorced father William Borgens (Greg Kinnear) is an acclaimed writer who pines for his ex-wife (Jennifer Connelly) and sleeps with a married neighbor (Kristen Bell). Rather than writing anything new, William spends time coaching his teen son, Rusty (Nat Wolff), and 19 year-old daughter, Samantha (Lily Collins), in their writing careers. Samantha believes in sleeping around and not falling in love, and this attitude shows in her soon-to-be-published book, while Rusty is more sensitive and looking for true love. Luckily, the object of his affections, Kate (Liana Liberato), notices him when he writes a poem about her, and nice guy Lou (Logan Lerman) manages to catch Samantha. But love has a way of making things even more complicated.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 
Many movies about writers wind up taking a passive approach as the writer character sits back, observes, and records life as it happens around him or her. Writer/director Josh Boone has solved this dilemma with his complex, emotional portrait of family of writers. STUCK IN LOVE isn't really about the act of writing itself but rather the struggle with how much a writer needs to open up his or her heart to the world. The characters show varying degrees of this struggle, as well as the pain that can be associated with all of them.
 
The movie's deep, multi-faceted characters result in terrific performances by the entire cast, and this is clearly Boone's strength. His visual style, too, is mainly in service of the characters, without any fancy flourishes. Where the movie steps wrong is in the subplot about a teen drug addict. Those scenes collapse into melodrama, shattering the movie's spell. But Stuck in Love quickly rights itself into a satisfying full circle.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how Stuck in Love depicts drinking, smoking, and drugs. Are there realistic/believable consequences? Does the movie make them look appealing or repulsive?
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  • Why is Samantha so interested in sex without love? Parents, talk to your teens about your own values regarding sex and relationships.
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  • How much have these characters opened up to life? To what degree were they hurt? Does this movie make you want to be closed off and protected, like Samantha or hopeful like Rusty?
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  • Does Stuck in Love make you want to become a writer? What are the struggles versus the rewards?
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Movie details

Theatrical release date:July 5, 2013
DVD release date:October 8, 2013
Cast:Greg Kinnear, Lily Collins, Nat Wolff
Director:Josh Boone
Studio:Millennium Entertainment
Genre:Drama
Run time:97 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:language, teen drug and alcohol use, and some sexual content

This review of Stuck in Love was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written bywonder dove November 30, 2013
AGE
16
QUALITY
 

Decent drama for the older crowd!

I believe this movie was almost called "Writers" but then changed to Stuck in Love. It was fairly good, with a few turn-offs, a few cliches. I thought it was going to be a sweet romantic drama but they had to throw in the cliche sexual content/graphic drug theme (of course!) Stuck in Love is about a family of writers, father William (Greg Kinnear) who's divorced to (but still loves) his ex-wife Erica (Jennifer Connelly), their daughter Samantha (Lily Collins) and son Rusty (Nat Wolff). Samantha has not talked to her mother in over a year due to blaming her for her parents' divorce. She's also about to publish her first book. William struggles to continue writing and often sleeps with a married neighbor Tricia (Kristen Bell) just because he can but shows no feelings for her as he's still deeply in love with Erica, he even sets out a plate for her at dinner. Samantha doesn't believe in love and strictly avoids those who are worthy, like a nice guy Lou (Logan Lerman) she meets at a bar who will stop at nothing to win her heart. However, her brother Rusty who's into Stephen King novels, falls in love for the first time with a cute but secretly troubled classmate Kate (Liana Liberato). In the end, it's a new beginning for all of them. There's probably something in this story that someone can relate to, or someone you know may be going through the same situation. It's fairly realistic but didn't get much emotion out of it. Language is strong with many f-bombs throughout (approx. 45-50), @sshole, b*tch, God@mn, d*ck. Violence has two men fighting where he pins him to the wall and twists his nose (crunch sound heard) indicating he broke it, he falls to the ground and is kicked. Two teens get beaten up with bloody faces. A punch to the face. Some arguments between characters. Sexual content includes a divorced man sleeps with his younger married neighbor, we see her bouncing on top of him, moaning but no nudity. Couples lay in bed together. A teen girl undresses but you only see her bra. Some kissing scenes throughout. A girl kisses a boy and goes into a closet. Lots of drug use, graphic pot use with a pipe used by a teen boy, a boy holds up a bag of weed at a party, a girl is shown snorting cocaine. There's smoking. 3.5 stars out of 5 if I could so I rounded it to 3/5! This is surely not recommended for teens under 17.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 11 years old September 24, 2013
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Stuck in Love

:)
What other families should know
Too much sex
Teen, 16 years old Written byangiegat January 18, 2014
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

Good Film but maybe not Interesting to Younger Viewers

I thought this was a really good movie about love and how life sometimes hurts but you have to put in work and open your heart to get over the hump. There is no sex actually shown but depending on your views about pre-marital sex, this movie could be inappropriate however, that is something shown on every other television show your teenager sees. One of the older characters is "f---k buddies" with a married woman but nothing is shown. One of the more minor characters has a drug problem that gets a little out of hand but eventually goes to a rehab - an anti-synthetic drug message. However, on of the main characters does smoke weed a few times. Again, your personal views of herbal drugs may make this inappropriate. The other characters who drink (beer or wine) explicitly are of age except when a teenager takes a quick swig of wine. Overall a really good movie. If you don't think your child is old enough to see it, don't hem and haw about; it probably wouldn't be that interesting to immature viewers especially younger boys as it is a little gushy and romantic.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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