Father and child sit together smiling while looking at a smart phone.

Want more recommendations for your family?

Sign up for our weekly newsletter for entertainment inspiration

Parents' Guide to

Year One

By James Rocchi, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Old Testament meets old jokes in rough, unfunny comedy.

Movie PG-13 2009 97 minutes
Year One Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 21 parent reviews

age 17+

Should be rated R not PG-13

Movie should be rated R for being riddled with obscene humor and more innuendos than can be counted. The childish toilet humor aims for the intellectual bottom of the comedy barrel. It's shocking that the MPAA rated this PG-13.

This title has:

Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 13+

Year One

Year One is Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content throughout, brief strong language and comic violence.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (21 ):
Kids say (36 ):

Director Ramis (Groundhog Day) may be a comedy titan, but YEAR ONE feels both slapdash and slow -- as if the film felt like it could spread out the few jokes it had by dawdling between scenes. Black and Cera are both funny insofar as they do what they normally do -- Black is wild and wacky, Cera reserved and repressed -- but the movie doesn't ask them to do much more, and the supporting players (including David Cross, Hank Azaria, Paul Rudd, and Oliver Platt) consistently steal scenes out from under the stars.

Perhaps the original, R-rated cut of Year One was funnier, but that seems unlikely; some scenes have such weak transitions that you find yourself confused by how characters got from one to the other -- and wondering what went missing in between. The plodding pace doesn't help, either -- the movie feels padded and slow and bogs down unforgivably in too many places. Year One has gags and costumes galore, but it doesn't have the snap that would make it truly funny throughout, instead of scattering a few gags against a backdrop of tedium.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: June 19, 2009
  • On DVD or streaming: October 6, 2009
  • Cast: Jack Black , Michael Cera , Olivia Wilde
  • Director: Harold Ramis
  • Studio: Sony Pictures
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Run time: 97 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13
  • MPAA explanation: crude and sexual content throughout, brief strong language and comic violence
  • Last updated: January 2, 2023

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