Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance: The Great Gatsby, Jack Reacher, and Safe Haven

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

by | May 9, 2013 | Comments


This week, Baz Luhrmann’s jazzy, stylized adaptation of The Great Gatsby hits theaters, giving families a golden opportunity to compare and contrast the differences between the film and the book. Plus, the action-packed Tom Cruise vehicle Jack Reacher and the romantic drama Safe Haven head to DVD shelves. Read on to find out what’s appropriate for family viewing.

In Theaters This Week:

The Great Gatsby


What’s it about? Yale grad and World War I vet Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) is drawn into the orbit of Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio), a mysterious millionaire who throws lavish parties and flaunts the trappings of affluence in an effort to win the heart of Daisy Buchanan (Carey Mulligan), who’s married to a rich jerk.

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG-13 “for some violent images, sexual content, smoking, partying and brief language.” It’s certainly safe for young teens, particularly those who would like a visual companion to their English homework.

Is it any good? Critics say Baz Luhrmann’s take on The Great Gatsby is visually stylish, and features a strong performance from DiCaprio, but overall it misses the spirit and the emotional weight of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel.

New On DVD:

Jack Reacher


What’s it about? Tom Cruise stars as the title character, a former Army M.P. who is called upon to investigate a mass shooting and uncovers a web of intrigue.

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG-13 for “for violence, language and some drug material.” Given that it’s a story about a sniper, Jack Reacher might be a tough sell to some parents after the recent shooting in Newtown, but it’s probably safe for teens.

Is it any good? Critics say that while Jack Reacher doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it’s an above-average crime thriller with a charismatic performance from Cruise.

Safe Haven


What’s it about? Katie (Julianne Hough) arrives in town haunted by a dark secret from her past. Eventually, she falls for widowed single dad Alex (Josh Duhamel). But will the aforementioned dark secret intrude on her new life?

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG-13 for “for thematic material involving threatening behavior, and for violence and sexuality.” Safe Haven is based on a novel by Nicholas Sparks, so expect it to get all kissy-kissy.

Is it any good? Critics say Safe Haven is schmaltzy, conventional, and fluffily romatic. In other words, it’s like most other movies based on Nicholas Sparks novels.

Tag Cloud

CBS All Access zombie cinemax Crackle Valentine's Day TLC Warner Bros. See It Skip It Syfy Mystery Cartoon Network Star Trek VH1 Paramount 007 Interview Extras Drama Nickelodeon cults cooking Watching Series Country Summer Sundance Now BBC X-Men HBO GLAAD crime Schedule Nominations SundanceTV technology Superheroes PBS Sneak Peek crime thriller Creative Arts Emmys Adult Swim Marvel robots NYCC Pirates Masterpiece Polls and Games Rocky Comedy Central Apple based on movie CMT Columbia Pictures binge Martial Arts transformers science fiction MTV Winter TV Christmas Year in Review Ellie Kemper A&E romance supernatural LGBTQ Emmys vampires Cosplay DC Comics Rock VICE Calendar 20th Century Fox Reality Acorn TV mutant Sci-Fi Video Games YouTube Red boxoffice Lifetime History Mary Tyler Moore historical drama period drama TBS SXSW Marathons zombies harry potter Winners CW Seed Musical Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Tumblr Set visit USA Esquire Comedy composers thriller medical drama AMC Countdown 2015 festivals El Rey Trivia TNT unscripted Action Freeform APB Box Office Fox News Toys 2016 PaleyFest sports GIFs Amazon 45 TIFF CBS political drama Logo Oscars Certified Fresh Horror IFC Films Animation diversity The Arrangement Reality Competition Character Guide sitcom FOX Walt Disney Pictures 24 frames serial killer Rom-Com TCA crime drama DC Universe Showtime cats NBC DirecTV FX Music streaming The CW ESPN travel Biopics National Geographic Awards social media hist YA crossover Shondaland Starz Hulu ratings Election Superheroe psycho GoT Mindy Kaling Photos 21st Century Fox President Teen comiccon discovery Pixar SDCC Ovation MSNBC politics Opinion 2017 Lucasfilm Ghostbusters police drama Thanksgiving Best and Worst war Super Bowl Sony Pictures Trailer justice league E! singing competition American Society of Cinematographers Disney Grammys BET TV Land golden globes CNN Tomatazos Western talk show E3 Holidays biography Lionsgate Sundance cops WGN TruTV Podcast spy thriller DC streaming service BBC America Spike FXX USA Network Nat Geo adventure First Look Netflix Fall TV dceu TCA 2017 Bravo dramedy ITV TV Comic Book TCM Paramount Network Premiere Dates IFC Pop what to watch docudrama Britbox finale Disney Channel RT History dc Star Wars Food Network OWN ABC Family Red Carpet Writers Guild of America Fantasy Infographic Spring TV Universal Musicals Kids & Family ABC Dark Horse Comics aliens