Yes Day Parent Guide
Kids will enjoy this annoying power transfer fantasy, but adults will be busy calculating the financial cost of this family's activities.
Parent Movie Review
Carlos and Allison Torres (Edgar Ramirez and Jennifer Garner) used to be fun. They went skydiving, stayed up late, and lived life to the fullest. Now hard work and parenting have sapped some of their energy, and it seems like all they say is “no”. Then Mr. Deacon (Nat Faxon), the eccentric guidance counselor at their kids’ school, introduces them to the concept of a “Yes Day”, a day where, within some rules, the parents have to assent to anything the kids request. Although concerned, Carlos and Allison have had enough of being boring and agree to the plan… but whether or not they’ll survive what their kids have planned is another matter.
Let’s start with the content. As you might expect, this is a very kid-friendly film, with no serious profanity, drugs, or sexual content. The only thing that stands out is the over-the-top comedic violence, which hits the usual areas: man falling out of tree, man attacked by birds, a fistfight at an amusement park over a stuffed gorilla…ok, maybe that last one isn’t so typical. But for the most part, this is your bog-standard, over-sugared kids’ movie. At least, it looks that way on the surface.
The premise of this movie is both absurd and impractical. For the Torres family, this kind of irresponsible behavior is made possible by Carlos’ cushy job as in-house legal counsel. In the case of families even marginally less affluent, a “Yes Day” like this would be prohibitively expensive and potentially catastrophic. Off the top of my head, the combined cost of the activities (not to mention the damages) would run to few thousand dollars. There are cheaper ways to be an irresponsible parent, and I honestly think the movie would have been much more interesting if the characters had to balance their desire to be have fun with real-world financial constraints.
Your average nine-year-old will probably enjoy this power-transfer fantasy, but anyone even slightly older will recognize both the execrable writing and fundamental absurdity of the plot. While I’m not saying parents shouldn’t try to have fun with their kids, Yes Day is just 90 minutes of bad judgement and irresponsible parenting. Not that this movie is necessarily endorsing any real life “Yes Days”, but frankly, even a fictional one is more irritation than I think you need. Isn’t covid quarantine bad enough already without having your kids badger you to fill the toilet with vinegar and baking soda or drive through the car wash with the windows down?Directed by Miguel Arteta. Starring Jennifer Garner, Jenna Ortega, and June Diane Raphael. Running time: 86 minutes. Theatrical release March 12, 2021. Updated March 12, 2021
Watch the trailer for Yes Day
Rating & Content Info
Why is Yes Day rated PG? Yes Day is rated PG by the MPAA for some rude and suggestive material, and brief language.
Violence: There are a few instances of slapstick violence, which include a man being mildly injured after being attacked by birds and falling out of a tree, and a scene in which two women engage in a brawl over a stuffed prize at a midway game.
Sexual Content: Children are seen talking about “twerking”, without understanding what it means.
Profanity: There are several terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: None.
Page last updated March 12, 2021
Yes Day Parents' Guide
Why do the parents say yes to “Yes Day”? What do they get out of the deal? Is that a good idea? Why or why not? What are the consequences of that decision? Do you think families could have more fun for less money?
Loved this movie? Try these books…
With Yes Day! Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld have also turned the concept into entertainment. This time it’s a picture book that inspired the movie.
Kids who love stories about kids breaking the rules will enjoy Rules of the House by Mac Barnett and Matt Myers. When Mac’s sister breaks the rules, the house tries to turn her into rulebreaker soup.
Do you want to have fun with your kids without the chaos and damages? Try Family Fun Night! by Cynthia Copeland for activity ideas. Along the same track is 101 Kids Activities by Holly Homer and Rachel Miller, which suggests ways to adapt the activities for older and younger kids. Unplug by Sharon Harding is filled with screen-free activities that require little planning on your part but will help build memories and have fun.
Related home video titles:
Kids lead to anarchy in Daddy Day Care and Daddy Day Camp. With twelve kids, chaos is a foregone conclusion in Cheaper by the Dozen 2. A blended family with eighteen children demonstrates how love and patience can bond Yours, Mine and Ours. In The Sound of Music, a musical governess brings happiness to a home where an uptight widower has enforced strict rules on his children.