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Girl Model Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 70

    out of 100

    Village Voice

    The radiant sadness of its two subjects - one a soulfully impassive stripling, one a symmetrical husk - forms the center of Girl Model, and that is enough.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 12+

Candid look at a sometimes-frightening industry.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Girl Model is a documentary that chronicles the slightly seedy underbelly of the international fashion model industry. Beautiful Siberian girls are shown desperately trying to impress a modeling scout to score a contract to Japan. There's no objectionable language (and half of the film is subtitled), but there are definitely sexual overtones to why and how the 12- and 13-year-old models are selected and how older models who don't succeed turn to high-end prostitution to earn money. A couple of scenes show the young models sobbing and homesick while on the phone with their parents, and the modeling execs all come off as slightly sleazy and exploitative. But for any older tween or teen girl interested in modeling, it's an eye-opening view at how the business can be far uglier than the beautiful pictures imply.

  • Families can talk about Girl Model's message about the modeling industry. What don't you see when you look at a beautiful girl's photo in a magazine?
  • Discuss body image issues with your kids. What does it say about modeling when some of the bikini-clad girls are called "too fat" or the scout says certain countries want to see only super skinny, super young girls?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Girl Model's only potentially positive take-away is the scout's confession that modeling is "based on nothing" and that beauty is such a subjective issue that each country has its own standard.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: The young girls just want a better life for themselves and their families, but all of the other adults are basically exploiting these girls for their own gain.

What to watch for
  • violence false0

    Violence: No violence, but there's much sadness watching the sobbing, homesick 13-year-old models attempt to contact their families back in Russia.

  • sex false1

    Sex: Although there's no actual sex in the documentary, there are obviously sexual overtones to the entire process/industry. The Siberian model agency boss alludes to the fact that the older the girl, the more likely she is to turn to high-end prostitution. In the scouting scenes, the girls are all wearing bikinis.

  • language false0

    Language: Not applicable

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false1

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Nadya's family toasts to her (the adults with wine) at her last family meal before heading to Japan. A character smokes, and a man mentions how some models turn to drugs.