A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this movie has brutal and graphic violence and extremely strong language. The R rating is accurate. Young drug addicts are vividly depicted, including one who has become a prostitute. There are scenes in a brothel and in a strip bar and non-explicit sexual situations.
What's the story?
VERONICA GUERIN is based on the true story of a courageous Irish journalist who would not be deterred from her coverage of drug dealers, even after being beaten and shot. When she was murdered by the people her stories were exposing, it inspired changes in law and law enforcement that sharply reduced the crime rate. This crime thriller follows Guerin (Cate Blanchett) as she risks her own life in order to connect mobster Martin Cahill to a Dublin drug ring.
Is it any good?
Veronica Guerin the person was a genuine heroine, but Veronica Guerin the movie is no Erin Brockovich. Cate Blanchett brings her always-vibrant life force to the role, but the character never feels real. Guerin is portrayed as cheerily indomitable to the point of irresponsible recklessness, especially when she puts her entire family at risk. She neglects her husband and child, she easily beguiles them into forgiving her, evidently because she is just so darn irresistibly perky that resistance is futile. And that's about as deep as it goes. We see that she never wants anyone to know that she is scared, but we don't see why. And she is so flippant that we never really know what is important to her. Is she a crusader for justice or just someone who likes to stir things up? We need to know in order to give this story the resonance it deserves.
The rest of the characters are one--dimensional. And, we find out right at the beginning that Veronica Guerin is feisty and charming and that she gets killed. The rest of the movie is just filling in the details, and it is curiously uninvolving for a story with so much built-in drama. And the disclaimer at the end that the movie's most important villain is a composite character leaves us feeling manipulated and unsatisfied.
Talk to your kids about ...
- In theaters: October 16, 2003
- On DVD or streaming: March 15, 2004
- Cast: Cate Blanchett, Ciaran Hinds, Gerard McSorley
- Director: Joel Schumacher
- Studio: Touchstone Pictures
- Genre: Drama
- Run time: 98 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: violence, language and some drug content
- Last updated: March 14, 2020
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