The Bubble parents guide

The Bubble Parent Guide

It might be possible to squeeze some entertainment out of covid lockdowns, but this movie doesn't do it.

Overall D-

Netflix: This covid comedy follows a group of actors and actresses trapped together in a lockdown bubble as they try to make a film about flying dinosaurs.

Release date April 1, 2022

Violence C
Sexual Content D
Profanity D
Substance Use D

Why is The Bubble rated R? The MPAA rated The Bubble R for language throughout, sexual content, drug use and some violence

Run Time: 105 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Following a run of bad movies, actress Carol Cobb (Karen Gillan) is under increasing pressure from her agent to return to the franchise that made her famous: the dinosaur-themed action blockbuster Cliff Beasts, which is gearing up for its sixth installment. Although it was scheduled to shoot in London, the coronavirus pandemic means that the actors will have to quarantine and then “bubble” on set. Carol’s co-stars, including Tik-Tok influencer Krystal Kris (Iris Apatow), veteran actor Dieter Bravo (Pedro Pascal), emotionally turbulent Lauren Van Chance (Leslie Mann), and her ex-husband and aspiring writer Dustin Mulray (David Duchovny) are a little bitter with Carol for backing out of Cliff Beasts 5, but they’re excited to get the new movie made. The only problem is, as with any production, there are delays and mistakes. And as the actors are contractually forced to remain in the bubble until the production wraps, the long stay starts to create some tension…

I don’t like to say The Bubble is “unwatchable”, because I’ve watched some genuinely nightmarish movies, but it’s pretty close. At one point, under the impression that the movie should have ended half an hour ago, I made the mistake of checking the runtime. I had 40 minutes left. It was at that point that I resorted to a strategy which is only available for digital release: I sped up the playback speed to 1.5x. Honestly, it helped. I mean, the movie was still an obnoxious cash grab which tried to substitute high-profile cast and celebrity cameos for any sort of humor or storytelling, but it was over considerably faster.

A smaller problem is the timing of the film’s release. When it started filming in early 2021, we were in the midst of large-scale lockdowns and social distancing. For better or worse, at the time of the film’s release, most countries are lifting most Covid-related restrictions, and the movie just feels…late. Not only does it feel dated, but it’s also set in a period most people don’t really want to think about.

I’m not sure how the filmmakers scored this high-profile cast, either (and puzzling this out might be the most interesting part of the viewing experience). Maybe it was some form of pandemic-related temporary insanity on the part of the actors? Maybe they just looked at who else had agreed to be in the movie? Maybe the script looked better on paper? I don’t know. It’s atrocious on film, with a script that replaces all its characters with one-dimensional cliches and hopes you won’t notice that they haven’t said anything funny. I’m not the biggest fan of Apatow’s comedies to start with, but this is by far the worst one I’ve seen. My biggest regret is that I didn’t increase the playback speed sooner. As for the rest of you, this movie is 90 minutes of your life you just won’t get back.

Directed by Judd Apatow. Starring Karen Gillan, Kate McKinnon, Pedro Pascal, david Duchovny, Keegan-Michael Key. Running time: 105 minutes. Theatrical release April 1, 2022. Updated

The Bubble
Rating & Content Info

Why is The Bubble rated R? The Bubble is rated R by the MPAA for language throughout, sexual content, drug use and some violence

Violence: There are several scenes of over-the-top movie gore. A person’s hand is shot off. Several characters are slapped. A fistfight breaks out. A person is shot with an arrow.
Sexual Content: There are several sex scenes which do not include nudity. There are frequent graphic sexual conversations and references. There is a scene depicting a close-up shot of computer-generated dinosaur genitals.
Profanity: There are 81 uses of sexual expletives, 33 scatological curses, and frequent uses of mild profanities and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adult characters are seen drinking. There are also scenes depicting hard drug use, including cocaine, inhalants, LSD, and some unspecified pills.

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Other mediocre/dreadful films featuring the coronavirus pandemic include Songbird, Love in Dangerous Times, Stuck Together, and Family Squares. It is perhaps most realistically handled in Kimi.