A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Unforgettable is a thriller about a woman (Katherine Heigl) who tries to ruin her ex-husband's new relationship. Things get pretty violent; there are scenes of a man beating up a woman (punching and throwing her) and her stabbing/slicing him. Other characters are stabbed and hit with a fireplace poker -- bloody wounds and blood stains are shown. There are two fairly graphic sex scenes; while neither of those includes graphic nudity, there's partial nudity in another scene (bottom, part of a breast) when a woman prepares to step into a tub. Masturbation is implied, and there's kissing, innuendo, and sex talk. Language isn't frequent but does include a few uses of "f--k" and "s--t." Characters drink socially on several occasions, and one character drinks alone, while another hides cigarettes. Apple iPhones and Facebook make prominent appearances, since a key part of the plot involves social media manipulation (which leads to the movie's only notable takeaway: Don't put all of your most sensitive information on your phone!).
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
In UNFORGETTABLE, divorced dad David (Geoff Stults) is engaged to his new girlfriend, Julia (Rosario Dawson). Julia starts to get to know Lily (Isabella Kai Rice), David's daughter from his former marriage to blonde, perfect Tessa (Katherine Heigl). Julia is on edge because the restraining order against her abusive ex, Michael (Simon Kassianides), has just come to an end. But Tessa begins making her life difficult, too. In a crazy attempt to salvage her relationship with David, Tessa sets up a fake Facebook page for Julia, contacts Michael, and starts using Lily to subtly play Julia against David. When things turn violent, will Julia have enough evidence to prove that Tessa is behind it all?
Is it any good?
A better title for this terrible thriller would have been Unforgivable. Hamstrung by clueless writing and directing, it fails on just about every level, trying to wring thrills by pitting mean characters against dumb ones. Unforgettable -- which, by the way, is a title that has nothing to do with anything in this story -- has the kind of painfully awkward dialogue that makes you think the screenwriters weren't comfortable, or even familiar, with human conversation. It also seems to have no idea how life in general works. One character keeps her birth certificate, passport, and other sensitive data on her phone, which is easily stolen (and this after she's already been victimized).
Characters who are supposed to be in loving relationships don't share crucial information with each other; the result is that it's difficult to care about them on a basic level. And then, when the thriller stuff kicks in, it's impossible not to laugh. The camerawork by director Denise Di Novi (a veteran producer making her directing debut) is clumsy and dull; she vaguely attempts to borrow from many other permutations of this formula but doesn't seem to have any idea why those things ever worked. For some, Unforgettable could be a so-bad-it's-funny experience, but for many, it will just be aggravatingly bad.
Talk to your kids about ...
How does the movie depict sex? Does it have anything to do with love, affection, or trust, or are there other motivations? Parents, talk to your teens about your own values regarding sex and relationships.
In what ways could the characters have avoided this entire situation? Talking to one another? Protecting their online identity? Anything else?
How is this movie similar or different from other thrillers you've seen? What's the appeal of this kind of story?
- In theaters: April 21, 2017
- On DVD or streaming: July 25, 2017
- Cast: Katherine Heigl, Rosario Dawson, Geoff Stults
- Director: Denise Di Novi
- Studio: Warner Bros.
- Genre: Thriller
- Run time: 100 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: sexual content, violence, some language, and brief partial nudity
- Last updated: September 20, 2019
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