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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
It's more than OK to defend your good name, especially when it hasn't been tarnished not through your own mistakes but through others' desire to hurt you. Perseverance is a theme.
Positive Role Models
Tilly may be down, but she's never out; despite the slings and arrows aimed her way, she manages to find a way to stay true to herself and still care for her mother, who sometimes acts like she doesn't appreciate her.
Violence & Scariness
A boy is shown with what appears to be a fatal cut on his head. Townspeople openly jeer at Tilly and her mother, to the point of bullying. A man renders his wife unconscious with a "tonic" so he can have sex with her. Kids are shown bullying a young girl to tears. A few characters die, sometimes through gruesome means (not always shown, but discussed). A woman stabs her husband and later, off camera, kills him. Another woman sets fire to her home.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Couples kiss. In one scene, a married man is shown about to have sex with a woman who's not his wife; he undresses, but viewers don't see him naked. In another scene, a man strips down to his skivvies and flirts with a woman while standing there half-naked.
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Relatively infrequent use of words including "bastard," "s--t," and "f--k."
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Products & Purchases
Singer sewing machine.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Lots of smoking and drinking (sometimes to excess). One character gets hooked on hashish-spiked candy.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Dressmaker is an eccentric, appealing dramedy that's best for older teens and adults, thanks to fairly intense material about murder, mental illness, and bullying. There's also plenty of smoking and drinking, some kissing and sexual situations (though no nudity), and swearing (including "f--k"). Some upsetting/violent scenes are shown or discussed, and in one scene a man drugs his bereaved wife so he can have sex with her. Still, the main character demonstrates perseverance against the odds. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Revenge is a dish best served fashionably attired and ready to pounce in this wacky, sometimes cynical, and often winning examination of forgiveness, revenge, and everything in between. It's also a treat, simply because it takes you to unexpected places in unexpected ways. There's nothing that you could call boring in The Dressmaker. Its bold disregard for the cliched rules of Hollywood storytelling keeps the film energetic, if a little too expansive sometimes. In short, The Dressmaker -- if you'll pardon the pun -- is a near-perfect fit.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.