What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this 1937-set Zac Efron showbiz dramedy from Dazed and Confused director Richard Linklater is a world away from High School Musical (though Efron does sing). It tackles mature themes -- including infidelity and opportunism -- that aren't age-appropriate for Efron’s tween fan base, and the movie's initially slowish pace may turn off even some older fans. But when things get going, the movie is breezy fun for those who appreciate showbiz history. Expect some strong language (including "s--t"), a bit of drinking and smoking, and references to sex (though nothing graphic is shown).
- Families can talk about how the movie compares to other coming-of-age stories. What does Richard learn from Orson Welles -- and about himself?
- Who do you think the movie is intended to appeal to? Does it succeed?
- Why doesn't Richard feel like high school is big enough to contain him? Is he being fanciful, or is he right?