- Movie Reviews
- App Reviews
- Top Tips
- Take Action
Not suitable under 14; parental guidance to 15 (themes, suicide references, coarse language)
This topic contains:
|Children under 14||Not suitable due to themes, suicide references and coarse language.|
|Children aged 14–15||Parental guidance recommended due to themes, suicide references and coarse language.|
|Children over the age of 15||Ok for this age group.|
This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines.
|Name of movie:||Dear Evan Hansen|
|Consumer advice lines:||Mature themes, suicide references, coarse language|
This review of the movie contains the following information:
Overpowered by feelings of worthlessness and riddled with anxiety, Evan Hansen (Ben Platt) stands at the window looking out at a world he longs to be a part of but doesn’t feel he belongs in. Evan takes his meds and follows the advice of his therapist, writing a letter to himself, but his classmate Connor (Colton Ryan), who is dealing with his own demons, takes the letter from him and disappears. Evan is beside himself with worry, waiting for the moment when it is published online and there is ridicule and backlash. Instead, Connor’s mum (Amy Adams) gives the letter back to Evan, thinking these were the last words her son wrote before taking his own life. When she invites Evan to have dinner with her husband (Danny Pino) and Conner’s sister Zoe (Kaitlin Dever), Evan is determined to tell her the truth. Blindsided by the depth of their grief and despair, Evan can’t bear to destroy the happiness his letter seems to have brought them and instead weaves them a story of hope. He tells them about a wonderful day he shared with Connor, the kind of day he always imagined having with a friend and the kind of day his family had only ever hoped that Connor would have. Evan’s made up recollections help Connor’s family keep his memory alive and when Evan speaks at Connor’s memorial his words go viral. Soon projects are launched in Connor’s name, students come together and Connor’s family begins to heal, bolstered by the love and support that seems to surround their son. Evan can hardly believe how his life has changed: he is popular, admired and appreciated; when once he was invisible people now seek him out and wave to him in the hall; he and Zoe appear to be falling in love; and The Connor Project is well on its way to reaching the financial target to restore an orchard that Connor loved. Everything seems perfect and then the original letter Evan wrote to himself is leaked online and the backlash becomes unimaginable. Broken and devastated, Evan faces the impossible. He holds on, he keeps going and despite his mistakes and difficulties he continues to inspire others, reminding them that even in the shadows no one is truly alone.
Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.
Suicide; Family breakdown; The power of social media; Abandonment of a child; Grief; Battling mental illness, depression and anxiety.
Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.
Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.
There is some violence in this movie, including:
Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.
Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.
In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes and scary visual images, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged five to eight, including the following:
Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.
In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged eight to thirteen, including the following:
Children over the age of thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic physical harm or threats, molestation or sexual assault and / or threats from aliens or the occult.
The following products are displayed or used in this movie:
There are some sexual references in this movie, including:
There is some nudity and sexual activity in this movie, including:
There is some use of substances in this movie, including:
There is some coarse language in this movie, including:
Dear Evan Hansen is a stage to screen adaptation of the Tony Award winning musical drama. With a powerful cast, inspirational performances and timely messages that are important for us all to remember, this is a story that will touch your heart. Due largely to the themes it contains, this is not a family film but rather one that is best suited to older teens, mature audiences and fans of musical theatre.
The main messages from this movie are to hold on and keep going; that even if you are broken you are worthwhile; that even if you are lost you will be found; that we need to look out for each other; we need to be kind; and that, no matter what, we are never alone.
Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:
This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children attitudes and behaviours, and their real-life consequences, such as:
Tip: Leave out the first A, An or The
Selecting an age will provide a list of movies with content suitable for this age group. Children may also enjoy movies selected via a lower age.
Content is age appropriate for children this age
Some content may not be appropriate for children this age. Parental guidance recommended
Content is not age appropriate for children this age
Children and Media Australia (CMA) is a registered business name of the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM).
CMA provides reviews, research and advocacy to help children thrive in a digital world.
ACCM is national, not-for-profit and reliant on community support. You can help.