A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Positive Role Models
The characters all show compassion at moments but contempt and violent impulses at others. The husband has built a successful business and is billed as a "disruptor," but he can come across as selfish, controlling, and egotistical. The gardener takes pride in his work.
The husband is a rich White man, which he says means he walks around with a permanent target on his back. The gardener is Mexican-American.
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Violence & Scariness
Tension throughout. The burglar ties up the couple's feet and hands, locks them in a sauna, and chases and threatens them with a gun. Violent, bloody death takes place.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A married couple kisses and suggests going to the bedroom. They discuss trying to have a baby. There's mention of birth control and reference to paying off girls despite nondisclosure agreements.
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Lots of use of "f--k," "s--t," "goddamn it," "hell," "sucks," "idiot."
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Windfall is a mature mystery with some bloody scenes and a lot of language. The violence isn't appropriate for younger viewers, and a burglar with a gun who has people tied up threatens to get violent from the start of the film. There are also some mature themes about income inequality and people getting rich off technology that can negatively impact thousands. A husband and wife kiss and discuss trying to have a baby. There's also mention of birth control and of paying women off despite nondisclosure agreements. The characters repeatedly use "f--k," "s--t," "goddamn it," "hell," "sucks," and "idiot." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This intentionally Hitchcockian mystery successfully builds a stifling atmosphere of tension that doesn't resolve until the very last scene. The threat of violence hovers over Windfall like the hot air you imagine imbues the dry California setting. But when it comes, it still takes you by surprise -- and that would seem to be the point. Windfall's script is constructed in such a way that not a lot happens and even less is revealed about the characters, yet it draws you into the mystery of what you do know. Who is the burglar, why has he chosen this house, and what's behind the added layer of tension between the couple? The film's title hints at further themes of economic injustice -- coming into serious money in unethical if not illegal ways.
Early on, it's hard to know how dark the film will get. The characters -- backed by understated performances -- are surprisingly relaxed and even agreeable at moments, and there are fleeting hints of comedy. The gorgeous, sun-filled vacation home -- with its white-washed walls, luxuriously rustic pool and gardens, and seemingly infinite citrus orchards -- conveys an openness and lightness despite the claustrophobic setup of characters stuck together against their will. Opening scenes set to ambient noise capture the setting from a series of unusual angles and show a man wandering around enjoying the amenities. From this start, a feeling of unease is underscored by the contrast of setting and story, puzzling characters, and suspenseful instrumental music. While the combination may feel too studied or too intentional for some viewers, it works if you settle in and go along for the ride.
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.