A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
It highlights how divided the United States is and the various issues and communities on both sides of the political and economic spectrum. Racism, classicism, and issues relating to things like environmentalism, gun control, reproductive rights, COVID-19, and related issues are discussed.
Positive Role Models
Angry, frustrated people are shown from different sides of the political and economic spectrum. President Trump is sometimes shown or heard giving inflammatory and racist statements, and many of his supporters echo these statements.
Violence & Scariness
There are lots of scenes featuring angry protests, people pushing and shoving, and police officers pepper spraying protestors. People are arrested. Stacks of cremation boxes and gurneys with with corpses are visible (some with visible body parts showing). A recording of the final moments of George Floyd's life while being arrested is shared. A woman is shown spitting in a young man's face.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Brief scenes from a live drag show are shown. On one occasion, someone is shown making lewd gestures.
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Words like "pissed," "hell," "crap," etc. Curses including "s--t" and "f--k" are frequently used, and rude gestures are visible.
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Products & Purchases
Logos for YouTube, Adidas, sports franchises, Las Vegas hotels, etc. visible throughout.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Drinking and cigarette smoking is occasionally visible. Ads for alcohol are shown. Addiction is discussed, and addicts are seen on sidewalks.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that American Selfie: One Nation Shoots Itself is a documentary that reveals how divided the United States is a year leading up to the 2020 Presidential election season. Directed by Alexandra Pelosi (daughter of Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi), the issues addressed range from racism, classicism, and environmentalism, to gun control, reproductive rights, and the COVID-19 pandemic. Angry exchanges (yelling, insults, shoving, spitting), orderly and violent protests, and police brutality (including the audio recording of George Floyd's final moments in police custody and images of military police shooting tear gas and rubber bullets at peaceful protestors) is visible. Words including "pissed," "hell," and "crap" are used, as well as profanity like "s--t" and "f--k." People drink alcohol, make lewd gestures, and smoke cigarettes. Logos for MAGA, YouTube, Adidas, Las Vegas hotels, and other establishments are visible.
Is It Any Good?
This thought-provoking, and disturbing, documentary serves as a snapshot, or "selfie," that captures the country in a moment of high turmoil. It showcases how strongly divided people are over issues ranging from immigration to gun control, as well as more recent efforts to get people to wear masks to curb the spread of COVID-19. It also reveals the inability of people on both sides to discuss these issues civilly. As the tensions grow higher across the country, so does the violence, and the narrative moves quickly from candid interviews and imagery of political activism to on-going scenes of angry clashes between protestors, images of police brutality, and the frustrated shouts of people left with few options as they lose jobs, homes, and hope.
Some may argue that Pelosi (daughter of Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi) approaches these issues with a liberal bias. Scenes showing Trump supporters chanting anti-immigrant rants and folks arguing against COVID-19 government restrictions are juxtaposed with scenes of people who are suffering first hand from the consequences of this rhetoric. But it does point to the ironies (like pro-environmentalists leaving litter behind after a climate change march) on the left side of the divide. Meanwhile, it's impossible to hide the disconnect between what the White House is communicating to the public and the realities Americans are capturing on their cell phones every day. American Selfie: One Nation Shoots Itself isn't an easy watch, but it offers a lot of insight into the state of the country leading up to the official start of the 2020 presidential campaign.
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.