Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance: The DUFF, McFarland USA and more on DVD

We give you what you need to know about the family-friendliness of this week's new releases.

by | February 20, 2015 | Comments

In Theaters This Week:



The DUFF

73%

Rating: PG-13, for crude and sexual material throughout, some language and teen partying.

This high school romantic comedy, which challenges the notions of cliques, hierarchies and labels, is based on Kody Keplinger’s YA novel of the same name. So the material may be familiar to many young viewers, but even if you or your kids haven’t read the book, you’ll all recognize the settings and social challenges. Mae Whitman stars as Bianca, a smart, funny high school senior who learns she’s the DUFF — or Designated Ugly Fat Friend — to her two gorgeous and leggy best pals. As she works to rehabilitate her image, she must navigate the school’s mean girl, the emo boy she has a crush on and her lifelong next-door neighbor and friend, who happens to be the school’s hunky football captain. There’s a lot of frank talk about kissing and sex, much of which exists in an embarrassing video of Bianca that goes viral. Bianca also imagines herself in hot-and-heavy makeout sessions in a couple of dream sequences. But the film’s message of self-acceptance is extremely worthwhile. OK for tweens and up.



McFarland, USA

80%

Rating: PG, for thematic material, some violence and language.

This inspiring Disney film is based on the true story of an underdog, high school cross-country team composed of Latino farm workers’ kids in California’s Central Valley. These are students from struggling families who have toiled in the fields, and while they instinctively know how to run, they don’t know much about training or strategy. Kevin Costner plays their coach, who’s determined to put together a team and prove that his athletes are worthy of competing in a state championship. There are some mature moments and themes regarding socioeconomic disparity, as well as some fistfights, a knife fight and a possible suicide attempt. And yes, given the subject matter, the film itself follows a pretty predictable formula. But the underlying messages of teamwork, dedication and finding home and family are worthwhile. This is probably fine for most ages.

New On DVD:



The Theory of Everything

80%

Rating: PG-13, for some thematic elements and suggestive material.

Eddie Redmayne delivers a powerful, transformative performance in this multiple Oscar nominee about renowned astrophysicist Stephen Hawking. Admittedly, given the subject matter, it might be a tough sell for your kids. But if the older and more ambitious ones are interested — especially ones who are into science — there’s little here that would be inappropriate for them. Redmayne portrays Hawking from his early days at 1960s Cambridge, where he meets his wife, Jane (Felicity Jones), through his stunning diagnosis of motor-neuron disease and his intellectual triumph over the gradual physical deterioration that leaves him in a wheelchair, unable to speak. As his condition weakens, their marriage evolves, with each having an affair on the side with the other’s tacit approval. At one point, Hawking’s therapist leafs through a Penthouse magazine for his enjoyment. And there’s a bit of joking about the fact that Hawking was able to produce three children with his wife, despite suffering from a disease that renders him unable to move much. Suitable for older tweens and up.



Dumb and Dumber To

30%

Rating: PG-13, for crude and sexual humor, partial nudity, language and some drug references.

Fart jokes and urine jokes. Jokes about genitalia — those of our idiotic heroes and an unsuspecting old lady in a nursing home. Jokes about people of various ethnicities, sexual orientations and physical disabilities. If it’s raunchy and (allegedly) shocking, it’s in here. After all, this is a Farrelly brothers movie — and a sequel to a hugely popular Farrelly brothers movie, at that. Jeff Daniels and Jim Carrey return to the roles of Harry and Lloyd, respectively, which they played in 1994’s Dumb and Dumber. This time, they reunite for a road trip in hopes of tracking down the daughter Harry never knew he had, and hopefully finding a spare kidney along the way. They bumble and stumble from one ridiculous situation to the next and offend everyone they come across — all in the name of (alleged) satire. The crude physical comedy, which is the Farrellys’ raison d’etre, makes much more sense to me now that I have a 5-year-old son. Still, the material here is probably best suited for older tweens and up.



St. Vincent

77%

Rating: PG-13, for thematic material including sexual content, alcohol and tobacco use, and for language.

Sophisticated tweens and older will probably be OK with this rather mature comedy about a misanthropic alcoholic and the boy next door who becomes his inadvertent project. Bill Murray is back in reliable curmudgeon mode as Vincent, who smokes and drinks his way through his days in a shabby Brooklyn home. But his comfortable, anti-social routine is disrupted when a single mom (Melissa McCarthy) and her shy, bullied son (Jaeden Lieberher) move in next door and Vincent ends up functioning as de facto babysitter. Despite its ultimate feel-good themes, there’s some grown-up stuff here. Vincent has an ongoing fling with a pregnant, Russian stripper (Naomi Watts) and he takes the kid to a dive bar and the racetrack. There’s also a subplot involving an elderly woman who’s in a nursing home with Alzheimer’s. And as the kid gains confidence, he punches out one of the classmates who had tormented him. So hey — there’s some uplift after all.

Tag Cloud

2019 Disney streaming service YouTube Premium WGN hidden camera christmas movies women Year in Review crime thriller king arthur YouTube Red Turner Teen comic book movies ABC Signature travel teaser MTV mockumentary rotten movies we love zombie Ovation TCA Winter 2020 dramedy japanese BBC One Premiere Dates jamie lee curtis Creative Arts Emmys mob dragons adaptation dark new york Comedy french Ellie Kemper FOX Toys Podcast elevated horror CBS comic books twilight Western 2015 technology First Reviews documentaries obituary Quiz Star Trek DC Comics Classic Film Film San Diego Comic-Con Sundance TV pirates of the caribbean Cannes black south america OWN godzilla YouTube X-Men crime thriller aapi Apple TV+ Fantasy Sony Pictures RT21 Crackle stoner comics monster movies American Society of Cinematographers Tarantino strong female leads Mary Poppins Returns superhero cops TCA 2017 TIFF adenture sitcom Syfy critic resources Endgame APB cinemax spider-man cancelled TV series ABC deadpool Pixar Heroines Legendary anime E! italian football The Arrangement binge joker art house breaking bad fresh Hallmark Christmas movies talk show cooking scene in color boxing Pop TV sopranos Amazon Prime zombies CBS All Access El Rey game of thrones cancelled television witnail nfl dexter Netflix Christmas movies BAFTA Women's History Month NBC Apple TV Plus A24 Polls and Games Captain marvel Chilling Adventures of Sabrina The Academy archives RT History social media medical drama new star wars movies 2021 Wes Anderson transformers ghosts Logo AMC Plus Spring TV VH1 nbcuniversal royal family cats TCA Instagram Live Hulu screen actors guild kong book adaptation stop motion satire period drama Musicals Trivia Broadway Mary poppins streaming indiana jones dc Fall TV jurassic park Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Trailer stand-up comedy Lionsgate spider-verse Video Games reviews Marvel Television TCM free movies Box Office Valentine's Day Certified Fresh remakes HBO Go MSNBC latino cults sports Funimation news 21st Century Fox slashers First Look Superheroes Biopics Oscars rt labs critics edition 79th Golden Globes Awards debate critics Dark Horse Comics diversity all-time Black History Month Marathons quibi Freeform docuseries Watching Series razzies ITV LGBTQ kaiju The Walking Dead video best television marvel cinematic universe Pet Sematary werewolf blockbusters Music reboot award winner toronto Cosplay Winners finale SDCC green book unscripted rotten Infographic facebook composers Countdown IFC Films saw marvel comics spinoff Pride Month universal monsters supernatural Amazon National Geographic Schedule Musical Fox Searchlight new zealand space Elton John The Witch parents LGBT Academy Awards MCU 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards Martial Arts Character Guide NBA Acorn TV cancelled TBS dogs Sci-Fi popular Star Wars Pop laika nature Lifetime Set visit spanish President Grammys docudrama Film Festival Rocky Comic-Con@Home 2021 cartoon Bravo batman Tumblr Peacock TruTV TV renewals canceled Holiday Winter TV game show Comedy Central SXSW foreign 2016 scorecard BBC America Super Bowl gangster DC Universe Disney Plus children's TV Neflix CW Seed Christmas posters golden globes spy thriller Action war Mary Tyler Moore Stephen King true crime name the review a nightmare on elm street TLC Television Critics Association Chernobyl BBC DC streaming service politics Universal concert halloween tv doctor who independent comic book movie singing competition ESPN Sundance Universal Pictures Nickelodeon basketball Amazon Prime Video kids romantic comedy Best and Worst Calendar Black Mirror criterion Sneak Peek Song of Ice and Fire See It Skip It 24 frames venice mutant Anna Paquin HBO Max book PlayStation The Purge TCA Awards cancelled TV shows Columbia Pictures emmy awards Alien HFPA discovery Rock Family psychological thriller PBS Awards wonder woman Nominations Tubi AMC New York Comic Con telelvision hispanic Tomatazos sag awards young adult Paramount Plus Hallmark History Kids & Family mcc Tags: Comedy The CW sequel richard e. Grant tv talk TNT festival what to watch movie trailers indie Avengers Netflix Interview USA YA police drama Emmys Country 45 spanish language Emmy Nominations ViacomCBS Showtime Binge Guide comic miniseries science fiction Brie Larson Holidays hist action-comedy Vudu Shondaland casting scary movies legend scary TV Land sequels Disney+ Disney Plus Election robots GoT Rocketman Pirates Marvel theme song A&E Epix Horror revenge natural history movies Paramount rt archives Animation Fox News romance lord of the rings The Walt Disney Company die hard anthology Mudbound USA Network GLAAD IFC ABC Family prank 007 streaming movies rt labs 2020 olympics Comics on TV Cartoon Network halloween Summer Rom-Com TV movies series animated FX hollywood harry potter japan Opinion 72 Emmy Awards Tokyo Olympics Arrowverse Disney Channel directors heist movie blockbuster GIFs FX on Hulu Spike ID king kong Warner Bros. DGA psycho zero dark thirty Awards Tour classics james bond comiccon dceu black comedy BET Awards Starz Image Comics versus Britbox vs. Sundance Now justice league Paramount Network disaster TV 73rd Emmy Awards 20th Century Fox worst Comic Book comedies Trophy Talk Lifetime Christmas movies Esquire high school IMDb TV Mystery political drama feel good superman Hollywood Foreign Press Association hispanic heritage month DirecTV Drama Amazon Studios ratings Prime Video 1990s franchise Photos Ghostbusters boxoffice Baby Yoda festivals BET Pacific Islander Masterpiece FXX E3 biopic live event Reality Competition Exclusive Video NYCC Lucasfilm 99% Writers Guild of America fast and furious Adult Swim Television Academy video on demand Apple SundanceTV Food Network Disney Walt Disney Pictures leaderboard 90s screenings toy story Spectrum Originals PaleyFest Travel Channel Mindy Kaling slasher asian-american documentary chucky genre australia Thanksgiving Superheroe CNN target crossover Crunchyroll dreamworks Extras VOD 93rd Oscars worst movies renewed TV shows trophy CMT blaxploitation Reality know your critic WarnerMedia Turner Classic Movies live action VICE vampires Marvel Studios TV One international 2018 mission: impossible biography 71st Emmy Awards Nat Geo films serial killer canceled TV shows Fargo rom-coms OneApp cars 2017 Red Carpet HBO spain based on movie Shudder aliens 4/20 Hear Us Out child's play Discovery Channel adventure crime drama golden globe awards historical drama suspense