Parents' Guide to

Sunset Boulevard

By Scott G. Mignola, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

A must for fans of ruthless black comedy.

Movie NR 1950 110 minutes
Sunset Boulevard Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 1 parent review

age 12+

A Brilliant Performance by Gloria Swanson...

SUNSET BOULEVARD is a cinematic treasure. The breathtaking performance by Gloria Swanson in the leading role elevates this engaging melodrama to a truly superior level. The story, riveting and filled to the brim with passion and over-the-top drama, is completely riveting. Violence is the only issue in the film. After Joe tries to walk out on Norma, she attempts suicide by slitting her wrists (offscreen; all we are bandages around her arms). A few fatal shots are fired: a man is shot twice in the back and once in the stomach (it isn't gory) and his body is shown floating in the pool.

This title has:

Too much violence

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1):
Kids say (7):

The performances do justice to the ruthlessly witty script. William Holden is a perfect deadpan to Gloria Swanson's Hollywood fright show. Erich von Stroheim is stoically tragic as the butler with an unthinkable secret. Nancy Olson is so sweetly ambitious as the love interest who gets tangled in their sticky web that you'll want to cry out to her, "Run! Run for your life!" All four received Academy Award nominations.

A monkey's funeral. Wind whistling through the organ pipes. Mansion doors stripped of their locks because of the suicide attempts. The details are all so wonderfully morbid; they melt together into a kind of hardboiled Hollywood gothic narrated by a dead man. While it's likely to scare little ones out of their pajama bottoms, a more mature teen and adult audience will find Sunset Boulevard a spectacular and hair-raising movie experience. In addition to being nominated for eleven Academy Awards (three of which it won, including Best Screenplay), writer-director Billy Wilder's film rated a twelve on the American Film Institute's list of America's 100 Greatest Movies.

Movie Details

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