The Blind Side Parent Guide
The Blind Side serves as a strong reminder to look around and see those we might otherwise be passing by.
Parent Movie Review
Sports stories are fertile ground for inspirational scripts, and The Blind Side reaps a bounteous harvest from this true account of Michael Oher, a real life football star who was drafted by the NFL earlier in 2009.
Michael (played by Quinton Aaron) doesn’t have much going for him when Mr. and Mrs. Touhy find him walking on the side of a road one cold wet evening. Coming from a broken home, and one of over a dozen siblings, the African-American teen has been accepted into a Christian school because of his football potential—but his academic skills need serious work. Even more distressing, his quiet demeanor covers the fact that he is homeless.
The white Touhy’s are on the other side of the privilege fence. Sean (Tim McGraw) is a successful businessman and Leigh Anne (Sandra Bullock) is heavily involved in the lives of her son and teenage daughter (Jae Head and Lily Collins)—she’s a typical soccer mom. Yet they each realize passing by “Big Mike” would be inconsistent with the beliefs they claim to hold. Taking the teen into their home, for what is supposed to be just a night or two, turns into a longer term commitment that returns surprising benefits to both parties.
The Blind Side is one of those rare movies that demonstrates religious principles in a subtle way. While the Christian woman isn’t perfect (and Bullock plays the role with a bit of her usual edge), she is obviously a caring individual—even if she’s not afraid to give the football coach (or anyone else for that matter) a piece of her opinionated mind. Yet it is the humble Michael who ends up teaching her a few much-needed lessons—especially when he opens her eyes to a world where her pat answers and ready solutions don’t address the deeper problems.
As heartwarming and inviting as the film appears to be, parents should be aware that it also contains some infrequent profanities and other content concerns. A meeting between Leigh Anne and Michael’s mother (Adriane Lenox) reveals the effects of drug addictions on the family. Later, a lineup of football scouts arrive to convince the budding athlete to attend their school and in the midst of this Mrs. Touhy learns one of them took Michael to a topless bar (although a more crude term is used to describe what happened). Another scene depicts an altercation between Michael and some men from his former neighborhood, when crude sexual comments are made about the Touhy’s. After Michael uses his physical skills to retaliate, a gun is pulled out and fired (no one is shot). Finally his adopted mother jokingly threatens to “cut off” a part of his anatomy if he ever gets a girl pregnant.
Yet, the balance of this movie is definitely positive and motivating. Although it may come across a little sentimental at times, the core of this story is true (in fact the real Touhy family accompanied Michael when he accepted his NFL draft invitation). The Blind Side serves as a strong reminder to look around and see those we might be passing by on the side of the road.Directed by John Lee Hancock. Starring Quinton Aaron, Sandra Bullock, Tim McGraw, John Lee Hancock. Running time: 129 minutes. Theatrical release November 20, 2009. Updated June 6, 2020
The Blind Side
Rating & Content Info
Why is The Blind Side rated PG-13? The Blind Side is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for one scene involving brief violence, drug and sexual references.
This movie depicts an altercation between young men after one youth makes crude sexual remarks about anothers adoptive mother and sister. During the scuffle, punches are thrown, people are pushed and a gun is pulled out and fired (no one is shot). In a later scene a character claims to be packing a gun and to be a card carrying member of the NRA. A car accident occurs and two of the passengers are seen with some blood and minor injuries. Infrequent mild and moderate profanities are heard, including a couple of crude anatomical terms and one use of an accurate male anatomical term. A married couple is seen talking in bed and when the man rolls on top of the woman she asks if he is still paying attention to what she is saying. A woman discusses her drug addictions. A character is briefly seen smoking a cigar. Men sip beer.
Page last updated June 6, 2020
The Blind Side Parents' Guide
What do you think motivated the Touhy family to bring Michael into their lives? Do you think the risk they took was reasonable? If you were to meet someone like Michael, how would you or your family react? In what other ways could you assist someone?
Kathy Bates plays a tutor in this film, who identifies herself as a Democrat and as a religious person with doubts. The Touhys later comment that she is the first Democrat they have known. Do you think these statements are examples of religious and political stereotyping? How do you feel about the connections sometimes drawn between religious faith and political leanings?
This movie is based on Michael Lewis book, The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game, where he recounts the real life experiences of Michael Oher who became a First Round pick in the 2009 NFL Draft, selected by the Baltimore Ravens. Click here to learn more about Michael Oher.
Loved this movie? Try these books…
Michael Lewis' "The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game" focuses on the development of American football, and tells the story of Michael Oher on which this film is based. "Friday Night Lights" by H.G. Bissinger follows the true story of the 1988 Permian High School Football Team as they beat the odds and make a run for the Texas State Championship. "Slow Getting Up: A Story of NFL Survival from the Bottom of the Pile" by Nate Jackson tells of the every day life of an NFL player- and the problems that go with it.
The most recent home video release of The Blind Side movie is March 23, 2010. Here are some details…
The Blind Side releases to DVD and Blu-ray on March 23, 2010.
The Blind Side on Blu-ray offers the following bonus extras:
- Michael Oher Exclusive: Interview with the Pro Footballer Whose Life the Movie Depicts
- Sidelines: Conversations On The Blind Side (Sandra Bullock and Leigh Anne Tuohy Go One-On-One / Director/Screenwriter John Lee Hancock and Author Michael Lewis Go One-on-One)
- Acting Coaches: Behind The Blind Side (When Six Legendary SEC College Football Coaches Come Together, Competition Steps Up Both On and Off the Screen)
- The Story of Big Quinton (Actor Quinton Aaron’s Moving Life Story Has Much in Common with the Football Star He Portrays)
Related home video titles:
Director John Lee Hancock also worked on The Rookie, another true story about a long shot athlete. Football and a good education change the life of a struggling youth in the movie Rudy. Race and football interact heavily in Remember the Titans, which shows a football coach played by Denzel Washington as he struggles to integrate the high school team. Singer/Actor Tim McGraw plays the father of a feisty horse lover in Flicka.