Parents' Guide to

The Outsider

By Brian Costello, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Japanese mob story is very violent and bloody.

Movie NR 2018 120 minutes
The Outsider Poster Image

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

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Kids say (1):

While an entertaining and intriguing story, this movie comes off as being a little too self-aware of the similar movies that came before it, and a little too studied for its own good. Even if one isn't overly familiar with movies centered on Yakuza families, or even Mafia families from Sicily or New Jersey, it doesn't take much to spot the plot twists coming from a mile away. But perhaps this is what the more dedicated fans of movies like these want and expect. The problem is that a perfectly good "fish out of water" story gets overwhelmed with all these expected murders, betrayals, and literal backstabbings.

While there's no questioning Jared Leto's dedication to the role, it's often difficult to really get a sense of who exactly Nick is. It's assumed and subtly implied that he has found a sense of family and community he hasn't had in quite some time. A chance encounter with a character from his past reveals that the Nick we've seen is a more subdued shell of the more animated GI he used to be. But Leto's "strong and silent type" vacillates between Clint Eastwood's stoicism and Christopher Walken's menace, and it's jarring to reconcile the two. Nonetheless, a place and time (Osaka 1954) is certainly evoked, and The Outsider has some truly unforgettable moments.

Movie Details

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