Trust Me

Movie review by
Sabrina McFarland, Common Sense Media
Trust Me Movie Poster Image
Media literacy docu takes a swipe at digital misinformation.
  • NR
  • 2021
  • 91 minutes

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

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.

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Importance of media literacy in the age of digital misinformation. Don’t believe everything online. Seek out reputable resources. Trustworthiness is everything.

Positive Role Models

Smartphones aren't used in classrooms, reportedly resulting in better grades and more engagement among students. Experts discuss the role of fact checking and use of reputable sources to confirm the accuracy of news events. Parents share methods used to protect their kids, which include driving children to school and providing smartphones for emergency use. Archival footage from Dr. Martin Luther Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech spoken by the civil rights activist at the March on Washington in 1963.
 

Violence

Scenes of students fighting. Website image of a terrorist attack on a London bridge. Illustration of a police officer in a Ku Klux Klan hood pointing a gun at a Black boy wearing a hoodie. Surveillance video of an alleged child kidnapping. References include suicides of students due to cyberbullying, kids who died from diseases and could have reportedly been saved with vaccines, and journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s assassination. Archival footage includes collapse of the World Trade Center buildings, physical altercations between police officers and citizens, mob attack, KKK and ISIS members, Adolf Hitler illustration, Confederate flags, swastikas, Guy Fawkes mask, store looters, rifles, and car, truck, and airplane crashes.  
 

Sex

There’s a discussion of the Edgar Maddison Welch case that involved internet rumors about an alleged child sex-trafficking ring. Images include an illustration of a nude man, scantily-clad anorexic individuals, and a child bathing in a tub.
 

Language

Swear words include "ass," "bulls--t," and "f--ked up." Slurs include "bitches," "incest babies," and "savage." There’s a claim that the Twitter retweet button is like handing a 4-year-old a loaded weapon. Discussions include a fake news website creator and fabricated search engines, and the Nicholas Sandmann defamation lawsuit against media outlets. Images include anti-vaccine movement and anti-immigration posters, and White Lives Matter banner. Reference to allegations of the appearance of Russian propaganda on the internet.
 

Consumerism

There are images that include social media site logos such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, ads on websites, slot machines, ice cream truck, soda vending machine, and clothes bearing words and messages.
 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

There are images that include a kid receiving a vaccine, a child in a medically-induced coma, and a bag of alleged medicinal cocaine.  
 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Trust Me is a documentary about digital misinformation and the need for media literacy. References include the suicides of students from cyberbullying, a journalist’s assassination, and an alleged child-sex trafficking case. Featured images include a bag of cocaine, kids fighting, and Ku Klux Klan and ISIS members. Anti-vaccine posters are shown, and mention of the deaths of kids who reportedly could have been saved with vaccines. Claims are made that the Twitter retweet button is like handing a 4-year-old a loaded weapon. Reference to allegations of the appearance of Russian propaganda on the internet. Images include an illustration of a nude man, scantily-clad anorexic individuals, and a child bathing in a tub. Swear words include “ass," "bulls--t," and “f--ked up." Slurs include "bitches," “incest babies," and "savages." Trust Me includes the powerful themes of communication, compassion, and teamwork.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byRosemary Smith March 8, 2021

"Trust Me" for teaching critical media literacy skills

This is a great film for teaching kids how media "ill-literacy" can lead to crises, and what they can do to protect themselves from being manipulated... Continue reading

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

TRUST ME is a documentary that explores with its expert contributors the timely topics of misinformation and the importance of media literacy in the digital age. Director Roko Belic’s film notes that more than one billion people seek news and information on the internet daily. The movie also asserts that online misinformation tends to spread faster than true information.
 

Is it any good?

Documentarian Belic presents a powerful picture about the escalating use of digital misinformation and need for media literacy. The movie mentions that misinformation spreads surprisingly at a quicker speed than true information. Tech insiders proclaim that platforms aren't designed to offer readers reliable information, but help create an addiction among its users who then seek more. The film also addresses the issue of divisive narratives that are giving rise to an "us against them" culture, says Maria Ressa, Co-Founder & CEO of the news website Rappler. "The world is getting pushed and pulled apart, and yet people don’t know they’re being manipulated." Belic hopes that the film "will stimulate public debate so we can fix these problems." Impressively, Trust Me lives up to that task for viewers.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about digital misinformation and the role of media literacy in Trust Me. What is media literacy and its possible impact on misinformation? What are the consequences of misinformation?

  • What amount of teamwork may be involved in writing a news story? What steps are involved in fact checking it? What may be reputable resources to determine if a story is real or fake?

  • In what ways do social media sites hook their users? How may time spent on platforms affect communication with others? Compassion for others? 

  • What is native advertising? What are the distinct differences between internet ads that look like legitimate stories versus actual ones? 

  • How do the graphic images and language help or hurt the movie’s message? What does the director’s choice of title convey to viewers?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love documentaries

Character Strengths

Find more movies that help kids build character.

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

Streaming options powered by JustWatch

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate