Sing Street parents guide

Sing Street Parent Guide

The story, acting, music, production, and writing all work together to tell a simple but uplifting story.

Overall C+

Desperate to impress a girl, Conor asks her to model in a music video his band is making. The problem? Conor doesn't have a band. Now he has to start one.

Release date March 17, 2016

Violence B-
Sexual Content B
Profanity D
Substance Use C

Why is Sing Street rated PG-13? The MPAA rated Sing Street PG-13 for thematic elements including strong language and some bullying behavior, a suggestive image, drug material and teen smoking

Run Time: 106 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Ireland in 1985 is engulfed in a devastating recession that forces many Irish people to leave for England in hope of finding jobs. Those left behind are struggling to make ends meet, with many unemployed. Conor Lawlor (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) is a 15-year-old Dubliner with a passion for music and a desire to stand out. With his father out of work, Conor is sent to a cheaper school, Synge Street, where he meets a mysterious girl (Lucy Boynton) who lives across the street from the school. In a bid to impress her, Conor tells her he’s in a band and is looking for someone to be in their music video. To keep up the lie, Conor puts together a band called Sing Street. As their music and relationships develop, Conor learns how to be himself, stand up to bullies, and risk everything for a dream.

Coming of age movies tend to be a mixed bag. Sometimes they’re over sexualized, or unrealistic, or just plain bad. But when a coming of age story is done right, it can be amazing. Sing Street, luckily, falls into the later category. Conor’s journey of self-discovery and growth is beautifully told. He makes mistakes and he stumbles, but he also learns and grows. He faces problems that many teens face, such as bullies, trouble at home, and an unrequited crush, but his vulnerability and strength carry him through these challenges. His journey is subtly and powerfully reflected in the costuming and makeup choices. We see Conor try different styles emulating 80s pop stars until he finally finds a style all his own.

I would be remiss if I did not sing (see what I did there?) the praises of Sing Street’s soundtrack. The original music that the band writes is amazing. I have been listening to this soundtrack on a regular basis since 2016 and I don’t see myself stopping anytime soon. The music genres run the gamut from synth rock to piano ballads to 80s pop, but they are all integrated seamlessly into the story, and the music itself acts as a parallel to Conor’s growth as a person.

Sing Street is an all-round inspiring film. The story, the acting, the music, the production, and the writing all work together to tell a simple but uplifting story. The ending is motivational, but not in a cheesy way. It’s hard to explain, but it made me feel full of hope and passion and a desire to go out and live my dreams. That all said, Sing Street does contain a fair amount of content concerns, especially as far as language goes, so I can’t recommend it for young audiences. Compared to other entries in this genre it is actually relatively clean in some areas, but it is set in Ireland in the 80s, so there’s going to be a lot of swearing and smoking. For older teens and adults, Sing Street is an amazing coming of age story with a beautiful message and a fantastic soundtrack.

Directed by John Carney. Starring Ferdia Walsh-Peelo, Aidan Gillen, Lucy Boynton. Running time: 106 minutes. Theatrical release March 17, 2016. Updated

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Sing Street
Rating & Content Info

Why is Sing Street rated PG-13? Sing Street is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for thematic elements including strong language and some bullying behavior, a suggestive image, drug material and teen smoking

Violence: Boys fight in a schoolyard. A teen boy is punched in the face. A father slaps his son in the face. A priest drags a teenager into a bathroom and holds his head under the faucet. A bully threatens to kill a teen. A teen girl has a mark on her cheek that she admits is from her boyfriend. A priest punches a teen boy in the face.
Sexual Content: Rape is mentioned in a jokey context. A bully demands a teen pull his pants down, but he refuses. Phallic graffiti is shown in the background a few times. A woman is seen putting batteries in a vibrator. An extra-marital affair is mentioned. A teen couple kiss. A teen mentions wanting to have sex in the future. A son says that his parents got married only so that they could sex.
Profanity: Many uses of moderate expletives, one extreme expletive, many uses of terms of deity, the middle finger gesture is used twice. Gay slurs are used many times, as well as some outdated terms to refer to black people.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Teens and adults are seen smoking throughout. A priest drinks from a flask. Adults are shown having wine and whiskey socially. Discussions about drug addicts and alcoholics.

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Sing Street Parents' Guide

How does Conor change from the beginning of the movie to the end? What lessons does he learn? What does he do to stand up to his bullies?

Home Video

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