Cha Cha Real Smooth parents guide

Cha Cha Real Smooth Parent Guide

There's potential here, but the movie winds up feeling self-indulgent instead of compelling.

Overall C-

Apple TV+: Working as a party starter, Andrew begins an unexpected friendship with a single mom and her daughter. As the relationship deepens, it becomes more complicated.

Release date June 17, 2022

Violence B
Sexual Content C
Profanity D
Substance Use B

Why is Cha Cha Real Smooth rated R? The MPAA rated Cha Cha Real Smooth R for language and some sexual content

Run Time: 107 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Fresh out of college, Andrew (Cooper Raiff) has no plan and no prospects, so he moves back in with his family. While accompanying his younger brother, David (Evan Assante) to a bar mitzvah, Andrew meets a compelling young mom (Dakota Johnson) and her autistic daughter, Lola (Vanessa Burghardt).

Cooper Raiff is a young (only 25!) up and comer in Hollywood and he wrote, directed, and stars in Cha Cha Real Smooth. Although I do think he shows a promising level of talent, his age is his own worst enemy in what becomes a shallow, self-indulgent slog. His inexperience with life, and perhaps the ego-building experience of being celebrated for his first film at only 22, are obvious in the script. The plot is predictable, the characters shallow, and the overall themes fail to say anything worth hearing. I kept hoping this movie would get better, I really did. There is so much potential here and it could have been great in the hands of a more experienced writer. Although I did enjoy the last ten or so minutes, they aren’t worth the journey.

I personally don’t like Dakota Johnson as an actor, so I had a hard time getting past that in the first place, but her character didn’t help. She exists only to be broken so that Andrew’s love can fix her. She’s the opposite of a manic pixie dream girl, inhabiting a state of depressed arrested development until the knight in shining armor (a mediocre 20-something man) comes to shake her out of it. This is the type of story you expect out of a freshman creative writing class from That Guy who talks over all the women in the class and thinks he’s deep. Raiff is charming, no doubt, but his charm wears thin when it’s the only thing his character has going for him.

Aside from my issues with the naiveté of the writing, there are a lot of content concerns to note. With around 40 expletives, a sex scene, and adults drinking on multiple occasions, I cannot recommend this film for family viewing. I don’t think this is a horrible film by any means, but it could have been so much better. My issues aside, it does wear its heart on its sleeve and there are some genuinely poignant moments. I could see why some people would enjoy this movie, but for me the experience was dampened by its failure to live up to its potential. Just like most kids right out of college.

Directed by Cooper Raiff. Starring Cooper Raiff, Dakota Johnson, Evan Assante. Running time: 107 minutes. Theatrical release June 17, 2022. Updated

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Cha Cha Real Smooth
Rating & Content Info

Why is Cha Cha Real Smooth rated R? Cha Cha Real Smooth is rated R by the MPAA for language and some sexual content

Violence: A few characters get in a fist fight; one is later seen with a black eye.
Sexual Content: Adult couples kiss. A woman straddles a man and begins to kiss him, but he stops her. A couple have sex, though the scene is a close up on their faces so only movements are seen. Afterwards, the man is seen pulling a used condom out from under the covers.
Profanity: The script contains around 15 sexual expletives, as well as 25 mild and moderate expletives and 11 terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adults are seen drinking socially in many scenes. A man drives drunk but pulls over once he realizes how drunk he is.

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Cha Cha Real Smooth Parents' Guide

Why does Andrew feel so aimless after college? What does he do to figure out a path for himself?

Home Video

Related home video titles:

The classic romance between an older woman and younger man is The Graduate, which stars Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft. In Judy, Renee Zellweger stars as Judy Garland, whose marriage to a younger man is falling apart. The Age of Adaline puts a spin on the older woman/younger man story with a female protagonist who is literally ageless. Knowing that she will never get old, she is unwilling to enter a serious relationship. Amping up the laughs is The Proposal. Sandra Bullock stars an employer who forces her younger assistant (Ryan Reynolds) to propose to her so she won’t be deported.