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Parents' Guide to

The Queen of Versailles

By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Rich family faces financial crisis in teen-friendly docu.

Movie PG 2012 100 minutes
The Queen of Versailles Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 1 parent review

age 10+

Full of great lessons and very entertaining

This movie is best watched by the entire family with thoughts shared freely. Great lessons to learn on over spending, consumer traps and how to relate (NOT) to relate to each other as a family in times of crisis.

This title has:

Too much consumerism

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

The Queen of Versailles hits the perfect documentary trifecta -- riveting subjects, perfect timing, and a story that starts as a single instrument but finishes as a full orchestra. Clearly, excess is at play with the Siegels. But so is the bizarro-world dream that sadly has become a reality: that we must aspire for more more more, preferably all the time. Still, it's hard to see Jackie merely as a cautionary tale. It's precisely when the economy turns to pot and David's business is frozen that she takes center stage, revealing how much in denial she is about financial realities and how much she truly cares about her family. She's a survivor, and, like the best of royalty, it's hard to take your eyes off her.

It would be so easy to hate the Siegels: They spend more in one day than some families earn in a month; they obviously don't worry much about their carbon footprint, considering that they're building a 90,000-square foot mansion; and they're prone to making let-them-eat-cake statements that would make your jaw drop. (Faced with having to rent her own car for the first time, Jackie asks the clerk whether it comes with a driver.) But the beauty of THE QUEEN OF VERSAILLES is how we walk away from it feeling not hate, but humanity. Director Lauren Greenfield presents David and Jackie in three-dimensional clarity, eschewing caricature -- so easy and tempting given their outsized personas -- for complexity. And the Siegels are so interesting that you won't want to miss a single minute.

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