Lots of anguish in heavy, repetitive drug-addiction drama.
“Beautiful Boy” is an intense drama based on the true story of a teen (Timothée Chalamet) who’s seriously addicted to drugs, including crystal meth. Scenes show him preparing drugs with a spoon and lighter, injecting drugs, stealing pills and popping them, driving under the influence and attending meetings. He smokes pot with his father (Steve Carell); in one scene, the dad also snorts cocaine. Language is very strong, with multiple uses of “f---,” “s---” and more. Teens have sex in a shower, with kissing, thrusting and moaning, but no explicit nudity. Characters shout and argue, and a teen girl nearly dies of an overdose but is saved through CPR. Although the performances are fine and the film certainly gets its anti-drug message across, it’s grueling and heavy-handed, as well as very mature. (112 minutes)
Satisfying horror sequel has tons of blood, strong language.
“Halloween” is a direct sequel to the iconic same-named 1978 slasher film, and it ignores every other sequel and reboot (all nine of them). Survivor Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), now a grandmother, has been single-mindedly preparing herself for the day that masked killer Michael Myers would come for her again. Spoiler alert: He does. Expect graphic, very gory slasher violence and strong language (“f---,” “s---,” etc.) throughout the movie. The brutal killings include stabbings, slashings, impalings, beheadings, bludgeonings and more. There’s also brief nudity, teen sexuality, and some drinking/drug use by adults and teens. The movie is directed by indie star David Gordon Green and co-written by Green and Danny McBride and Jeff Fradley. Will Patton and Judy Greer co-star. (109 minutes)
Short tale gently helps preschoolers handle fear.
“Super Monsters Save Halloween” is a short, stand-alone movie that ties in with Netflix’s “Super Monster” series and a new line of Playskool toys. The series regulars, all preschool age children of world-famous monsters (e.g., Dracula, Frankenstein), are regular kids during the day; their mini-monster personalities show up after dark. They are all funny, enthusiastic, caring and nonthreatening. No villains here. This story talks about making Halloween fun and takes a gentle look at one little boy who’s afraid of the scary parts of the holiday. The Super Monsters help him understand the difference between real and pretend. Messages are solid and clearly stated. Fine for even the youngest viewers. (24 minutes)
Available via Netflix streaming.
Language, mild violence, drinking in dark teen soap.
“Light as a Feather” is a teen soap about unexpected deaths that happen after teen girls play a creepy party game. Despite the show’s focus on death, the violence is somewhat downplayed: Though deaths do take place on-screen, and viewers sometimes see bodies or disembodied parts, there’s no blood, gore or emotional grieving. Characters are in danger, but the tone is lighter than a horror movie or series intended for older viewers. Sexual content is also mild: same- and opposite-sex dating, kissing and romantic complications. Language includes “s---,” “bulls---,” “a--hole,” “hell,” “dammit,” “d---,” “sucks” and “holy crap.” Teens drink liquor and beer, with consequences — at least one character is killed after drinking and driving. One character has a baggie full of unnamed pills. (10 -minute episodes)
Available via Hulu streaming.
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