Parents' Guide to

I Know This Much Is True

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Downbeat, lovely book-based drama deals with mental illness.

TV HBO Drama 2020
I Know This Much Is True Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 1 parent review

age 14+

A mystery show that has Christian representation, but is kind of confusing.

Complex, sad, mystery show isn't really inappropriate. There is quite a bit of swearing and a little violence but nothing a middle schooler hasn't heard or seen. I gave it 14+ because it is kind of confusing, while it is brilliant and sad, I think a 14 year old could probably understand the show. (Also, they might get bored of the show really fast but, let them give it a go)

Is It Any Good?

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

Affecting and absorbing, if a bit of a bummer, this drama's makes you care about the troubles of its characters without gimmicks or cliched plotlines about crime or mayhem. I Know This Much Is True certainly begins with a bang: While late '80s library patrons hunt for books and use the microfiche machine, Thomas rocks back and forth at a library table, reciting vaguely Biblical gibberish before raising an axe. People flee, scream -- and the axe comes down, and now Dominick has one more terrible way he's connected to his difficult yet lovable twin brother. That's far from Dominick's only tragic issue, though, and as we get to know him, the camera often zooms in to examine Ruffalo's expressive face in extreme sympathetic closeup.

He's plenty good enough to bear the scrutiny, and so is the rest of the cast; so good, in fact, that it becomes a temptation to not think much about what we're seeing, but just to let the fantastic performances wash over you. Rob Huebel, generally cast only in comedic roles, is appealing as Dominick's best pal, an insecure actor. Kathryn Hahn is reliably on-note as Dominick's ex-wife (and the holder of one of Dominick's saddest secrets). Archie Panjabi has crackling chemistry with Ruffalo as the therapist that begins helping Dominick unravel the many strands of his trauma. In an era when dark dramas tend to involve antiheroes and over-the-top scenarios, a downbeat character study is a hard sell, but I Know This Much Is True is rendered so skillfully that viewers who pause to give it a look won't be able to stop looking.

TV Details

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