Marvelous and the Black Hole Parent Guide
This film's narrative is familiar but the stellar cast make the story shine.
Parent Movie Review
Since the death of his wife, Angus (Leonardo Nam) has been struggling to keep his family together. His eldest daughter, Patricia (Kannon) retreated into video games, and his youngest, Sammy (Miya Cech), moved straight into delinquency. Angus’s attempts to bring his new girlfriend Mariann (Paulina Lule) into the family have only alienated Sammy further. Unsure of how to change her behaviour, Angus forces her to attend a small business class at a local community college over the summer, hoping that it will give her some direction. But Sammy would rather cut class and give herself stick-and-poke tattoos while smoking in the bathrooms – until she meets Margot the Magnificent (Rhea Perlman), a magician who encourages her to take up the craft. Since Sammy must come up with a small business idea for her class anyway, she agrees to tag along, and soon finds that she has a lot more to learn from Margot than just sleight of hand.
Directly confronting a child’s confusion and distress at the loss of a parent, Marvelous and the Black Hole is a warm and heartfelt film which convincingly portrays the emotions of its characters. Sammy comes off as interesting and familiar, where in less capable hands a confused and angry teen might just be an irritant. But careful writing and a considered performance from Miya Cech ensure that the film’s protagonist is deeply sympathetic and understandable. Rhea Perlman is, of course, fabulous, and clearly having fun with her character’s eccentricities.
The high-quality cast is essential because Marvelous and the Black Hole is hugely reliant on these performances. All emotional dramas are, and this movie is no exception. But since the recovering-from-grief narrative is so familiar, the film is even more dependent on a memorable cast to make the story shine – which it does. I found myself predicting the plot well in advance, but not particularly bothered. The familiarity of the story aids the film in being accessible to younger viewers by maintaining elements of coherent and satisfying storytelling.
There are a few elements which make this production unsuitable for children and land it squarely in PG-13 territory. Sammy’s penchant for profanity and her occasional smoking habit aren’t kid-friendly but shouldn’t trouble teen audiences. In fact, teens are the most likely to understand Sammy’s predicament, and may even learn a few lessons from her journey. Who knows? Parents may even learn a few lessons about helping their troubled teens. Stranger things have happened.Directed by Kate Tsang. Starring Miya Cech, Leonardo Nam, Rhea Perlman. Running time: 81 minutes. Theatrical release April 22, 2022. Updated January 13, 2024
Watch the trailer for Marvelous and the Black Hole
Marvelous and the Black Hole
Rating & Content Info
Why is Marvelous and the Black Hole rated Not Rated? Marvelous and the Black Hole is rated Not Rated by the MPAA
Violence: A character is injured in a car accident. A teenager is shown engaging in stick-and-poke tattooing. A person is cut across the leg accidentally. A fantasy sequence involves a character being sawn in half. There are references to massacres and attempted suicide.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: There are five uses of scatological profanity, one extreme profanity, and infrequent uses of mild curses and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: A teenaged character is seen smoking and attempts to drink alcohol but spits it out. Adult characters are briefly seen drinking socially.
Page last updated January 13, 2024
Marvelous and the Black Hole Parents' Guide
Why does Sammy resent Marianne so much? What does Angus fail to understand about his daughter’s struggles? How does Margot help Sammy cope with her troubles? Why do you think Sammy was able to connect with Margot, when she was so opposed to connecting with anyone? How do Margot’s experiences help her relate to Sammy?