The Undoing

TV review by
Marty Brown, Common Sense Media
The Undoing TV Poster Image
Slow psychological thriller has nudity, sexual content.

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 16+
Based on 4 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Though many of the characters are difficult and complex, The Undoing, like most mysteries, is about the pursuit of truth and the courage to act morally, despite incentive to do otherwise. 

Positive Role Models

Central character Grace is portrayed as insightful, compassionate, and generous. The other characters tend to come off as more hard-edged and potentially untrustworthy by contrast.

Violence

Violence is shown sparingly. The central event of the show is a violent murder, but only glimpses of the crime are seen. Part of the victim's bloody body is seen.

Sex

The Undoing features full frontal nudity, characters talking about sex, and other sexual content, as in one scene where a mother breastfeeding is oddly sexualized.

Language

Profanity is used throughout and includes "f--k," "s--t," "damn," etc.

Consumerism

One of the main themes of The Undoing is the behavior of those with wealth and privilege. However, no consumerism is shown directly.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Characters drink alcohol socially. No smoking or drug use is shown.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Undoing is a psychological thriller about a young mother who is murdered. The show focuses on a group of Manhattan parents, their social circles, and the private school their children attend, particularly Grace (Nicole Kidman), her son (Noah Jupe), and her husband (Hugh Grant). The show features lots of sexual content, including full frontal nudity. Violence is shown sparingly. The murder itself is not seen, but the bloody body is briefly shown. Moderate profanity includes "f--k," "s--t," "damn," etc. Though the plots and creative teams are not related, The Undoing feels like a thematic sequel to the popular Big Little Lies. It moves at a similarly slow pace, draws suspense from a mysterious murder that may involve the main characters, and has a familiar set-up in which a mother from a lower social class infiltrates a wealthy group of friends.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byGrainofSaltMom January 7, 2021

Too much too soon

Great crime show. Good characters and writing. Love plot and characters that unravel and flip-flop between good and bad and keep you guessing.
A high quality p... Continue reading
Adult Written byJoey P. December 15, 2020

Fun miniseries

The show is great. There are some inappropriate scenes but it is just nudity and it is infrequent
Teen, 15 years old Written byKwick November 30, 2020

Had me on the edge of my seat

Every episode I thought a different person was the killer and I was in the edge of my seat the whole time. My family and I would come home and watch a new episo... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byHxgh101 March 28, 2021

Good for mature teenagers

This is a really enjoyable and gripping show and the plot is quite easy to go along with although there is quite a lot of swearing and some sex scenes. There is... Continue reading

What's the story?

THE UNDOING takes place among a circle of parents whose children all attend the prestigious Reardon School in Manhattan. Grace (Nicole Kidman) is a therapist who is helping the other mothers plan a fancy auction fundraiser for the school. Another mother, Elena (Matilda De Angelis), shows up to a planning meeting to help, but seems awkward and doesn't quite fit in with the others. When Elena is found dead the day after the fundraiser, Grace finds out her husband (Hugh Grant) is a suspect in her killing.

Is it any good?

It's tough for a psychological thriller to be good when the characters don't actually have inner lives. The Undoing -- which attempts to follow in the footsteps of recent successful HBO miniseries Big Little Lies and Sharp Objects (but feels incredibly shallow in comparison) -- hinges upon the relationship between Grace (Nicole Kidman) and Jonathan (Hugh Grant), but there's nothing especially interesting about them. Instead, it becomes clear that Grace is the nicest person in a group of snooty socialites, which is maybe one of the least dramatic things for a show to be about. Among other things, Big Little Lies and Sharp Objects made the most of their coastal California and rural Missouri settings. The Undoing, on the other hand, makes upper Manhattan look like an anonymous collection of parking structures and crosswalks. If it were aiming for style over substance that would be one thing, but The Undoing doesn't have much of either.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the murder. Who is Elena? How do the other characters feel about her? Is there something mysterious about her? How is the relationship between Grace and Elena different from the relationships between Grace and the other mothers?

  • What do we know about Grace and her family? How does Grace's work affect how she relates to her family and friends? What do we learn about Grace and her family as the show evolves? How does that change how you feel about them?

  • What do we know about the Reardon School? How does the school inform the characters' relationships? Do you think the show has a point-of-view about the school and the parents? What might it be?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love psychological thrillers

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