Kajillionaire Parent Guide
If you enjoy slow, character-focused drama, this could be the film for you.
Parent Movie Review
Old Dolio (Evan Rachel World) has an unusual name for a girl. That’s because her parents named her after a local hobo who won the lottery, hoping that he’d include her in his will. Not surprisingly, Old Dolio has had a strange life. Raised by her parents Theresa (Debra Winger) and Robert (Richard Jenkins), she learned young how to be part of her parents’ scams and con jobs. When their ersatz little family bumps into Melanie (Gina Rodriguez) in the middle of a “job”, Old Dolio starts to realize just how much of her life has been affected by her awful upbringing, and wonders if there might be something better for her…
If you’re looking for some big dramatic crime drama, look elsewhere. Despite the unlawful behavior of the main characters, this is less about the crimes and more about the criminals and their motivations. Don’t go into this expecting some high-speed cops-and-robbers chase – it simply isn’t that kind of movie. Kajillionaire leans more into personal drama, with particular focus on family relationships and money.
This is a tragic film, in the sense that almost all the conflict could be prevented by basic human decency and communication – also true of real life tragedy. What’s especially frustrating is knowing that the people who most need to hear that message are also the people who either wouldn’t watch this movie or wouldn’t understand it if they did. I suppose the film is dead-on in that sense because Theresa and Robert fit that mold remarkably well.
As far as parents are concerned, you can be assured that this is a remarkably soft “R” rating. Frankly, I’ve seen films with a PG-13 with more objectionable content, but the MPAA tends to ride harder on smaller and more independent projects like this one. For comparison purposes, it’s worth noting that Canadian rating agencies have given this film a PG and in the UK it rates as 12 and up. The Brits got it right: I wouldn’t watch this with the whole family but it’s perfectly acceptable for teenagers.
That is, it’s perfectly acceptable if your teenagers are OK with slow, character focused drama. This isn’t a movie for fans of high-intensity fast-paced action. Instead, it’s a nuanced and emotional look at the personal cost of materialism, the fickle nature of family, and the importance of communication. While I don’t think it’s perfect by any stretch, the movie gives viewers a lot to think about – even if it takes some time getting there.
Watch the trailer for Kajillionaire
Rating & Content Info
Why is Kajillionaire rated R? Kajillionaire is rated R by the MPAA for some sexual references/language
Sexual Content: A woman is shown breastfeeding in the context of a parenting class. A couple is shown kissing. A male character is shown stripping down to his underwear. There are some crude sexual references and language with no on-screen activity.
Profanity: There are two uses of extreme profanity and two uses of scatological profanity. There is infrequent mild profanity and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adults are shown drinking wine with dinner.
Page last updated October 20, 2020
Kajillionaire Parents' Guide
Why do you think Robert and Theresa are the way they are? What do you think their upbringings were like? What are the consequences for Old Dolio of their peculiar parenting style? How does Old Dolio cope?
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Another film with strong critiques of materialism is Parasite, which won the Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best International Feature Film last year.