Parents' Guide to

Valentine Road

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

True story of kid's gender exploration that ends in murder.

Movie NR 2014 89 minutes
Valentine Road Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 12+

Amazing… yet!

This was a sad and tragic story, I watch any murder documentary I can get my hands on, and this one just got me, had me in tears and also had me fighting mad! How dare those three drunken cake eating “b”s say “he fixed a problem” a problem?!?! Another child acting different than a another is a problem enough to stare at another child for more than a few minutes and then put two NOT one but TWO bullets into the back of his head?! I don’t care what he went through as a child or how he grew up or what age he was, he knew this was wrong at 14 and knew it would probably end this other child’s life… and the balls of these women to publicize that message is just disgusting! He planned this, he took a life, he should never see the light of day again. I hope him and those three women get a lot of backlash for this documentary it is well deserved! I showed my 12 year old daughter this documentary to teach her to watch for the signs of this kind of hate and I hope she never has to experience anything like this herself. I’d like to ask those woman and anyone else supporting this murderer how they would feel if this was their child dying in a hospital bed over stupid selfish hate.

This title has:

Great messages
age 5+

Making the killer the victim !

I think children of all ages should watch this to educate them on bullies and accepting those who are different. Brandon was clearly a bully. He killed in cold blood a young man for his differences. This was So tragic and heartbreaking then to make it worse they turn the KILLER into the victim which is disgusting. At the age of 14 you know right from wrong. You know that shooting someone in the back of the head not only once but twice is murder!! And yes, it was premeditated! Those jurors and teachers wouldn’t have been supporting him if it were their kid he killed in cold blood. He is a killer and it Is disgusting that this documentary focused more on the killer and less on the ACTUAL victim ! He should have received life !!!! There was NO reason at all that could justify what he did to Larry ! And it shows you how closed minded and ignorant people are !! Also, to the ONE teacher who made Larry feel accepted and loved and free to be himself, You are the real hero in all of this ! More people should be like you! To those other teachers, saying basically it was his fault because of how he wore makeup and dressed, you are disgusting and you are what is wrong with this world today. I hope you do not have kids because If you do I’m sure they will be as closed minded as you and probably as messed up as Brandon !!! If you have kids and watch this movie, and you have as little compassion for Larry as they Did in this documentary, then I feel bad for your children. Because had that been one of my children that got murdered in cold blood, Brandon would do LIFE because I would make sure of it ! The message this documentary sends is it’s ok to kill someone who is different then you.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (3):
Kids say: Not yet rated

This is not an easy documentary to watch, but it feels like an important one that pulls no punches. Watching McInerney's mom crying over her son and his love of PBJs, seeing King's friends mourn their departed pal, listening to a group of parents and teachers debating whether King brought the murder on himself by transgressing -- it's all painful. But families who watch together will have much to talk about.

Matthew Shepard, Brandon Teena, Gwen Araujo: These are the names of young people who were murdered because they were gay or transgender, a terrible roll call to which the name Larry King must be added. The short, sad life of King and the life of his murderer is unpacked here. Both were victims of abuse and neglect, both affected by the prejudices and mores of the adults and the society around them. As Ellen DeGeneres says in a bit of footage culled from her talk show, somewhere McInerney got the idea that being gay, or transgender, or wanting another boy for a valentine was so bad that "killing Larry seemed to be the right thing to do."

Movie Details

  • On DVD or streaming: June 3, 2014
  • Director: Marta Cunningham
  • Inclusion Information: Black directors
  • Studio: Docurama
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Run time: 89 minutes
  • MPAA rating: NR
  • Last updated: October 7, 2022

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