Melissa McCarthy’s, The Starling, is an emotional film about grief. Aimed to tug at your heartstrings, and perhaps make you shed a tear, does The Starling take off? Is it kid-friendly? What ages is it best suited for? I’m breaking down all of the thematic elements, including its PG-13 rating, in my The Starling Parents Guide and Movie Review. Here’s what parents need to know to help YOU decide if it’s appropriate for kids. As always, no spoilers!
The Starling Parents Guide + Movie Review
The Starling, premiering on Netflix September 24, 2021, is a dramedy primarily focusing on grief and how everyone copes with grieving differently. Lilly (Melissa McCarthy) and Jack (Chris O’Dowd) are grieving the loss of their daughter. The movie takes along the journey of their grief. It showcases their hardships and struggles, all while trying to pull at our emotions. The thing is, I think they try too hard.
Hear me out. The film’s premise is gut wrenching. The loss of a child is arguably the most heartbreaking loss anyone can experience. And while the movie itself aims to get there, I felt it fell flat. It was missing that rawness — the realness that transports you to the character and makes you feel those deep emotions. I just couldn’t get to that point. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy The Starling, because I did. However, it’s not a movie I’d necessarily watch again.
There was a lot of music in The Starling. Usually music makes you feel certain emotions, but I felt the music was overdone. It took away the feelings we should have felt. I’m not sure if a different music choice would have mattered or not, but I felt it was too much.
Is The Starling Kid-Friendly? Here’s Your Parents Guide:
Melissa McCarthy is such a fun actress, so I definitely can see teens wanting to watch this movie. But should they? Will they enjoy it? Here’s what parents need to know before allowing their children to watch The Starling.
The Starling has an MPAA rating of PG-13 for thematic material, some strong language, and suggestive material. It has a runtime of 1 hour 43 minutes. Let’s break down the thematic elements and take a closer look.
There isn’t much in terms of violence. Jack is in a psychiatric facility and does have an episode where he needs to be detained. It’s not overly aggressive though, mostly pushing. There is also violence shown towards animals which could certainly be upsetting.
There is definitely more profanity than I’d like for a PG-13 movie. I heard one F-Bomb, as well as: Sh*t, a$$hole, B*tch, and damn.
There are A LOT of dark themes in The Starling. Lilly and Jack are grieving the loss of their infant. I believe there is nothing more tragic and heartbreaking than losing a child. People who have experienced such a loss certainly have the potential to be triggered — but it’s sure to be upsetting to everyone. Suicide is also part of the storyline.
I’m going to come right out and say it. The Starling is not okay for kids, tweens, and teens. I don’t see them enjoying the movie, and it is certainly not made for their demographic. I would recommend The Starling for ages 16 and up. But honestly, I think that’s even too young to enjoy the film. The Starling is for adults.
The Starling fell a bit flat for me. I went in expecting a story to really tug at my heartstrings, but it never seemed to take off. While it was watchable, I was expecting more.
Although The Starling wasn’t my favorite movie, there were some great messages. It’s important to realize that everyone copes with grief differently, and that’s okay. There’s not one right way to grieve. It’s also important to see the light at the end of the grieving process. Our grief might never completely go away. It will stay with us. However, it’s what we do afterwards that matters. There can still be light within the darkness. And finally, before you can even start the grieving process, you must be honest with yourself. Self-care is key. You matter. The Starling hits Netflix September 24th. Give it a watch. I’d love to hear your thoughts.
The Starling Synopsis
After Lilly (Melissa McCarthy) suffers a loss, a battle with a territorial bird (The Starling) over dominion of her garden provides an unlikely avenue for her grief and the courage to heal her relationships and rediscover her capacity for love.
I HOPE YOU FOUND THIS The Starling PARENTS GUIDE AND MOVIE REVIEW HELPFUL FOR YOUR FAMILY. WILL YOU BE WATCHING?!
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