Parents' Guide to

The Half of It

By Renee Longstreet, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Touching, smart teen story deals with sexuality; drinking.

Movie PG-13 2020 104 minutes
The Half of It Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 10 parent reviews

age 18+

Very good movie with common problematic sexual assault trope

The movie brings up the theme of sexual assault and then dismisses it. Paul has the common but problematic view that one can kiss someone without verbal consent because of a "look." The movie goes in the right direction by having Ellie reject his unconsented kiss, because a "look" (in this case, highly mistaken) does not count as consent (Paul and Aster both kiss each other without consent). The movie ends with Ellie kissing Aster without consent. These are all examples of sexual assault. As a victim of this form of sexual assault, as well as others, this type of review needs to address that. Still, a great movie that is honest about how messy infatuation can get, but verbal consent is something that the movie fails to address. This makes it problematic.

This title has:

Too much violence
1 person found this helpful.
age 12+

Sweet, touching movie

This is a rare gem that is sweet without being corny. The main female characters are unrealistically mature in their thinking, but that’s not a bad thing as an influence on viewers — good to see smart, self-aware characters who learn about tolerance.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (10):
Kids say (36):

Exploring friendship, love, and sexuality, as well as the hardships of feeling ostracized as a Chinese immigrant family living in a small, predominantly White community. This film is executed with integrity and heart and star Lewis never misses a beat. Her sincerity, comic timing, and seeming effortlessness in bringing Ellie Chu to life are a joy to watch. She's supported by an excellent cast. Writer-director Alice Wu has guided The Half of It players with a delicate touch. The movie is both laugh-out-loud funny and insightful. The few missteps -- an awkward climax in church that's not in keeping with the authenticity of the rest of the film and some geographically "convenient" moments -- don't detract from the impact of the movie's inherent glow. In the ever expanding list of Netflix romcoms for teens, this one rises to the top. Highly recommended.

Movie Details

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