Parents' Guide to

The World Is Yours

By Barbara Shulgasser-Parker, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Gloomy French drama has drugs, violence, some sex.

Movie NR 2018 94 minutes
The World Is Yours Poster Image

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Although at times moving, this feels like a well-intentioned but often murky drama that will bore most teens old enough for the drug, violence, and (minor) sexual content. Unspoken social commentary focuses on a cast of characters who are largely second- and third-generation immigrants from African and Arabic countries who have become small-time hoods. But no matter their origins, director Romain Gavras wants to linger on a plot that presents stupid people struggling with their stupidity, with lots of Quentin Tarantino-style violence and harsh language.

Most affecting in The World Is Yours are the scenes between the adult Fares, still smarting from humiliations and neglect by his criminal and narcissistic mother, and the young daughter of a major drug dealer called The Scotsman. Like Fares, she has long been terrorized and taken for granted by her monstrous and overbearing parent. When the circumstances of a drug deal gone wrong throw them together, they bond, and the age difference melts away while they compare indignities visited by their cruel caretakers. These beautiful touches come far too late in the action to rescue the movie from the weight of its own uncertainties. Fares is clearly a nice guy born into the wrong family business, and it's difficult to imagine how he survived as a criminal up to the point the movie begins. Note that the title is taken from the extremely violent Brian de Palma gangster film Scarface, which in recent years has been admired by rap artists endorsing its depiction of marginalized youths striving to climb out of poverty into wealth.

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