Parents' Guide to

Zeros and Ones

By Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Challenging experimental movie has violent scenes, language.

Movie R 2021 86 minutes
Zeros and Ones 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+

Absolute piece of junk

Stay away No discernible plot!!!

Is It Any Good?

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

Director Abel Ferrara goes even more deeply than usual into uncommercial experimental mode here, delivering an opaque, baffling movie. Zeros and Ones hardly has any plot, but it does offer a series of nervy ideas and undeniable sensations. If Ferrara's Tommaso and Siberia appealed mainly to the cult director's die-hard fans, then Zeros and Ones makes those two films look positively mainstream, like multiplex popcorn-munchers. This film recalls Jean-Luc Godard's arty, post-New Wave work or Terrence Malick's more polarizing offerings, wandering from one unexpected moment to something else that feels totally disconnected, with various thoughts like "a hard road leads to a real life" expressed seemingly at random.

The pandemic -- and images of hand-washing and masks -- are among the most familiar things in the movie, providing something of an anchor but also indicating more uncertainty. Hawke is the only other familiar thing here. The movie opens with a video of him introducing the movie and ends with another video of him trying to make sense of what we've just seen. He closes with "yes, this is part of the film." Even the title, Zeros and Ones, is unclear, unless it refers to the digital format in which the movie was made. Whatever Ferrara is trying to say here, whether it's about conflict or acts of violence or something else, it's told by a veteran filmmaker who hasn't lost any of his fire. It's a tough, tricky movie that's worth unpacking.

Movie Details

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