The Age of Adaline

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
The Age of Adaline Movie Poster Image
Romantic fantasy lacks magical spark, but OK for teens.
  • PG-13
  • 2015
  • 110 minutes

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 5 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 11 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Encourages living every year as if it were your last, embracing love, and following your heart.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Adaline is intelligent and loving toward her daughter and generous with her time at work. Flemming wants Adaline to be happy and worries about her. Flemming and William convince Adaline to stop running. Ellis loves Adaline despite her secrets.

Violence

A few deaths and tense moments. Adaline nearly dies two times during the film, including the fateful car crash.

Sex

Adaline passionately kisses several different men over the decades. A couple of love scenes, but neither is graphic (ex. a couple in bed, embracing and hugging, with her bare shoulders and legs and his bare chest visible). A married couple kisses at their anniversary party.

Language

Brief and infrequent, including "hell," "goddamn," and a couple uses of "s--t."

Consumerism

Saab, Jeep.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Adults drink alcohol at parties, dinners, receptions. Adaline and Ellis drink several glasses of wine on a date. William drinks alone.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Age of Adaline is a romantic fantasy about a beautiful woman who has essentially been 29 for nearly 80 years. Starring former Gossip Girl headliner Blake Lively, the movie should appeal to teens who enjoy love stories. There are some passionate kisses and a couple of love scenes (which don't show much more than the woman's bare shoulders and the man's bare chest), as well as some language (infrequent use of "s--t"), drinking, and violence (the main character nearly dies two different times, including in a fateful car crash, and there are some actual deaths).

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent Written byDan G. April 24, 2015

Sexual activity, and pretty hokey.

The primary content that is objectionable for children in this movie involves the irresponsible sexual activity of the characters. What Common Sense Media desc... Continue reading
Parent Written bymovienut2 September 14, 2015

Any Age For That Matter

Honestly this movie has no business being rated PG-13. It ha no bad language! The language that is listed on the reviews I never even heard! And quite frankly... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byJflores14 April 24, 2015

Beautiful story of never growing old

This amazing nicholas Sparks type film is beautiful and Blake lively does an amazing performance!!! CONTENT: VIOLENCE- a intense car accident, a painful scene o... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byPeypey137 April 26, 2015

It's a very good movie!

I went and saw this movie and it was really interesting. It was very appropriate, it just might be a little confusing for young children.

What's the story?

THE AGE OF ADALINE is about the unconventional life of a beautiful woman named Adaline Bowman (Blake Lively). As a 29-year-old widowed mother in 1937, Adaline is in a freak car accident that leaves her unable to age (it's not magic, though; the narrator explains some complicated "scientific" reasons for her ageless body). Forever 29, Adaline changes her name, appearance, and residence every decade, even if that means leaving behind someone she loves. Adaline, who many years later goes by Jenny, is about to move again when she meets Ellis (Michael Huisman), a wealthy philanthropist who charms her into sticking around in San Francisco. But when Ellis introduces Jenny to his parents (Harrison Ford and Kathy Baker), she realizes his dad is one of her former loves.

Is it any good?

Lively is a radiant actress, and she's so lovely in her period gowns that it's easy to forgive some of the movie's many shortcomings because of her on-screen presence. Despite her charm and the movie's interesting premise of a woman who doesn't age, the execution is far from magical. First, there's a terribly heavy-handed narrator who tries to make the movie's magical realism elements sound scientific, when they would have been better left unexplained. Plus, there just isn't much of anything happening for most of the movie -- until 70 minutes in, when Jenny finally meets Ellis' parents and discovers his father is a former lover she abandoned. At least the inimitable Ellen Burstyn is on hand to play Adaline's elderly daughter, Flemming, adding much-needed humor to the far-too-serious proceedings.

Besides Flemming, Ford's William is one of the only interesting characters in the story. His relationship with Jenny/Adaline in the present and the past (in the earlier scenes, the character is played by Anthony Ingruber, who even sounds like Ford) is more compelling than the supposedly epic romance between Jenny and Ellis. And that's the main problem with the movie. Ellis and Jenny don't have the kind of swoon-worthy chemistry that the concept requires to make the love story work. And while the costume designer deserves kudos for Adaline's frequent decade-appropriate outfit changes, the script and plot are underwhelming.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the popularity of movies about eternal youth. Do you think The Age of Adaline would have been different had Adaline been less attractive? What do her looks have to do with the story?

  • Discuss the idea of the motto "years, lovers, glasses of wines -- these are things that shouldn't be counted." How do you feel about that adage?

  • How does the movie compare to other time-bending movies? Which ones are your favorites?

Movie details

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

For kids who love romantic dramas

Our editors recommend

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.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate