A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The Break seeks to change people's perceptions of young homeless people and what can be done to help them. It also highlights the need to make positive and healthy choices in order to improve our own lives.
Positive Role Models
Anne Mahlum is a homeless advocate who assists young homeless people by offering them assistance designed to help them find shelter, get jobs, and become self-sufficient. She also advocates running as a way of helping people empower themselves.
Violence & Scariness
No violence visible; one homeless teen admits to stealing in order to eat. The consequences of associating with gangs are also explored.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
The negative consequences of risky sexual behavior -- including pregnancy, STDs, and more -- are discussed. Birth control, sexual abuse, and homosexuality are also discussed.
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Occasional words like "damn" are audible. Rare use of "s--t" is muted.
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Products & Purchases
Mahlum is the founder and CEO of the nonprofit organization Back on My Feet; shelters like Covenant House are also highlighted. Music from U2's The Edge is featured.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Smoking is visible. One homeless youth discusses abusing drugs.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Break is a documentary that attempts to change the way that people think about young homeless people and how to help them. It also underscores the importance of making positive choices, working hard, and understanding the consequences of our actions. Smoking is visible, and issues like sexual abuse, promiscuity, birth control, homosexuality, and drug use are discussed. Crime, street violence, and gang culture are also themes. All this is offered within the context of explaining how people can end up homeless and the risks that come with living life on the streets. Parents may want to watch with their teens and talk about some of the issues raised here.
Is It Any Good?
The Break is an interesting -- and voyeuristic -- look into the lives of three of America's 1.5 million homeless young people. While the stories about how these young people got to the streets are sad, what makes this documentary compelling is the importance placed on assuming responsibility for the choices they've made. The Break also points out that there's no quick fix to their problems and that it will take a lot of commitment and hard work to become self-sufficient and realize their life goals.
It isn't easy to listen to some of the featured folks' struggles, but their willingness to take charge of their lives and take advantage of the opportunities being offered to them send a very strong and positive message. Meanwhile, watching Mahlum and various other people and organizations willingly offer their assistance shows viewers the many ways people can make a difference. Overall, The Break succeeds in offering a realistic but inspiring look at the way we think about the homeless -- and the ways that we can really help people in need.
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.