The Broken Hearts Gallery Parent Guide
The negative content in the film drags down what is otherwise a sparkling romantic comedy.
Parent Movie Review
Lucy (Geraldine Viswanathan) can’t let go of the past. Literally. She’s still holding on to an ex-boyfriend’s retainer (among other things), whilst reminiscing about happier days. Add in a rubber ducky, toenail clippings, a sock, a bike tire, and various other pieces of detritus from past relationships, and Lucy is at risk of becoming an emotional hoarder. Then Lucy gets drunk, dumped, fired, and climbs into the wrong car – all in one night – and starts to reconsider her relationships with men and their stuff.
I love the endorphin hit that comes from a good rom-com, but I must warn you that the feel-good vibe of The Broken Hearts Gallery comes with some strong negative content. The movie has a PG-13 rating but it is on the very high end of the scale and should probably be rated R. The profanity alone is enough to earn the stickier rating – there are close to five dozen swear words, including ten sexual expletives. The film’s dialogue also features frequent, detailed sexual conversations, including one where characters discuss masturbation while one holds a vibrator. This is definitely not family-friendly cinema. On top of this there are frequent scenes of alcohol consumption and intoxication, making this a film that most parents won’t want to share with their teens.
The negative content in this film really drags down what is otherwise a sparkling romantic comedy. The writing is crisp and witty and even I, jaded film critic that I am, found myself laughing uncontrollably on several occasions. The script mixes together well-rounded characters with some amusing caricatures to comedic effect. Lucy, in particular, is tremendously engaging. She’s appealingly neurotic; a raging extrovert who wears her heart on her sleeve and embraces life with gusto. She tells a man she’s just met, “If you got to know me, you’d be obsessed with me.” She’s kidding, but her joie de vivre is endearing and provides the zest that keeps the film afloat instead of sinking into a sea of maudlin self-pity.
Surprisingly enough, this simple rom-com also provides some positive life lessons for viewers. As Lucy helps other people get over their broken hearts, she discovers that she feels freer and more cheerful. We can all use a reminder of the happiness that comes from helping another person. Lucy also learns some lessons in emotional resilience; in how to bounce back in the face of rejection or obstacles. As an added bonus, Lucy learns to speak up for herself and stop relegating herself to a secondary role in her relationships. Best of all, the movie’s central relationship is grounded in kindness, friendship, trust, and partnership before the parties jump into bed.
At its core, this film is about the choices we make in life. It’s about the memories we keep and the relationships we choose to maintain. It’s about how we choose to see ourselves and those we love. If only the filmmakers had curated the content in this film more carefully – without the negative content cluttering up the script, this would have been a winning romantic comedy.Directed by Natalie Krinsky. Starring Geraldine Viswanathan, Dacre Montgomery, and Molly Gordon. Running time: 108 minutes. Theatrical release November 17, 2020. Updated November 20, 2020
The Broken Hearts Gallery
Rating & Content Info
Why is The Broken Hearts Gallery rated PG-13? The Broken Hearts Gallery is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for sexual content throughout and some crude references, strong language and drug references.
Violence: A character jokes about stabbing and eating a person. A pregnant woman wears a costume that has a baby erupting from her stomach. A woman talks about pushing a man off a roof and running him over. A woman waves a knife at a man. A woman throws food at a man. A man forcibly removes a woman from a restaurant. A man gets attacked by a purse-wielding woman.
Sexual Content: There is mention of a penis tattoo. A woman jokes about a condom. Two women kiss passionately. There’s a brief scene of a woman and man snuggled up in bed. Main characters frequently have detailed sexual conversations. Sexual anatomy is frequently mentioned. There’s mention of herpes. A woman stuffs money in her bra. There’s detailed discussion of masturbation with a woman holding a vibrator. A woman rips open another woman’s dress in a non-sexual context. A character describes menstrual periods in detail. A person talks about lying naked by a swimming pool. A man and woman kiss passionately while lying in bed; his chest is bare and her bra is visible. A woman wears a shirt with a picture of a uterus and a pro-choice slogan on it. A woman mentions putting lubricant on suits.
Profanity: The movie contains over 50 profanities, including 10 sexual expletives, nine scatological curses, 27 terms of deity, and assorted anatomical curses and minor swear words.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Women talk about drinking wine through Twizzlers. A main character drinks alcohol and gets intoxicated at a work event. People drink alcohol in social situations and are frequently shown as intoxicated. There’s mention of someone smoking weed. There’s mention of chewing tobacco. Characters drink alcohol as a disinhibitor. A main character talks about dropping acid.
Page last updated November 20, 2020
The Broken Hearts Gallery Parents' Guide
Why does Lucy save souvenirs from her relationships? Do you save things? Why are they important to you? What things mean the most to you? Why?