Parents' Guide to

Vita & Virginia

By Barbara Shulgasser-Parker, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Romantic drama based on true story has sex, brief nudity.

Movie NR 2018 110 minutes
Vita & Virginia Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

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

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: Not yet rated
Kids say: Not yet rated

This romantic drama is unlikely to interest most teens. The real problem with Vita & Virginia is that Vita is so thoroughly unlikable and yet she looms large as the wan Virginia's love interest as well as the muse who inspired one of Woolf's oddest works, Orlando. We want to see what Virginia sees in Vita, but what we see isn't pretty, a fickle, disloyal, selfish, insensitive heartbreaker, not the best partner for someone suffering from debilitating mental illness. This often feels overly earnest, dry, and static, and other times burdened with excessive explication that offers to the uninitiated just who Virginia Woolf was and how influential her group was.

On the other hand, we need more explanation as Virginia's moments of mental imbalance, hallucinations, and inner voices depict her as needing care, a fragile wisp too breakable to withstand ordinary life. Here, Virginia, known to be witty, just seems ponderous and socially backward. Scenes between her and Vita almost reduce her to childishness and their conversations are dull, earnest, and obscure. One is never sure exactly what Virginia means half the time. Decipher this one: "I shan't make you want me anymore by giving myself away like this." The film's unintentionally funniest line comes when someone remarks that Virginia doesn't look well while she's immersed for months writing a new book. Deadpan, expressionless, and corpselike, she disagrees, and replies, "Do you not think I look full of life?" No, Virginia, we do not. After several attempts, Woolf would eventually commit suicide in 1941, at the age 59, drowning herself in the River Ouse.

Movie Details

Inclusion information powered by

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.

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