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Parents' Guide to

Why Do Fools Fall in Love

By Barbara Shulgasser-Parker, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Drug use brings down teen idol; sex, violence, cursing.

Movie R 1998 116 minutes
Why Do Fools Fall in Love Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 18+

Based on 1 parent review

age 18+
The fight between Herman Santiago and Frankie Lymon

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

This is a movie that should have been better. Why Do Fools Fall in Love boasts four attractive and able actors in Berry, Tate, Fox, and Roshon, but they often have no choice but to sink to the level of a paint-by-the-numbers biopic script that any celebrity on the downswing could be plugged into. The story never addresses, nor even seems to think about, Lymon's complete lack of self-awareness as he strives for comebacks and repeatedly acts irresponsibly. The cliché of his plight as a fallen star is sadly predictable, portrayed with far more emotional resonance in too many other, better, biographical movies -- the four A Star is Born versions as well as bios of Ray Charles, Jim Morrison, Billie Holiday, Johnny Cash, and Charlie Parker, to name just a few.

The movie spends no time whatever showing why Lymon turned to drugs, nor does it clarify how he quit during the times he surprisingly seems to be clean. There's some suggestion that Frankie was a bit too cocky for his own good, but that's not explored. There's a suggestion that he might have partied too hard and that's why he lost his career, but that's not explored, either. There's also a suggestion that he played all the women in his life, deliberately committing bigamy, but that too is left unexplored. Audiences can delight in one never-disappointing performer -- in a category that includes no one else –- Lymon's friend, the iconic R&B star Little Richard playing himself.

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