Moxie

image for Moxie

Short takes

Not suitable under 13; parental guidance to 15 (themes of sexual violence and harassment)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Moxie
  • a review of Moxie completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 11 May 2021.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 13 Not suitable due to themes of sexual violence, harassment, and sexual references and lack of interest due to teenage subject matter.
Children aged 13–15 Parental guidance recommended due to themes of sexual violence, harassment, and sexual references.
Children over the age of 15 Ok for this age group.

About the movie

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: Moxie
Classification: M
Consumer advice lines: Mature themes, coarse language and references to sexual violence
Length: 111 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

When shy 16-year-old Vivian (Hadley Robinson) discovers her mother’s (Amy Pohler) rebellious and feminist past, she teams up with new student Lucy (Alycia Pascual-Pena) to take on the gender inequities at school. Armed with an anonymous zine, they call out sexism, racism, and harassment. Consequently, this causes conflict with Principal Shelly (Marcia Gay Harden), Vivian’s childhood best friend Claudia (Lauren Tsai), the captain of the football team Mitchell (Patrick Schwarzenegger), and Vivian’s own sense of identity.

Themesinfo

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.

Feminism; Gender-based violence/harassment; Racial inequality.

Use of violenceinfo

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.

  • None noted.

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

There are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children under the age of five, including the following:

  • The scenes mentioned below are likely to scare or disturb children in this age group.

Aged five to eightinfo

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.

There are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged five to eight, including the following:

  • A dream sequence shows Vivian running through a forest in fear, tripping and falling, and trying to scream but cannot make a sound – this sequence uses scary music and may distress young children.
  • A teenage boy rides his bike into a stationary car and falls – he is unhurt, but this may distress young children.

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

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 in this age group are also likely to be distressed by the scenes mentioned below.

Over thirteeninfo

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.

  • Jason (Mitchell’s friend) tricks a female character to sit on his lap without her consent.
  • Jason slaps Kiera’s bottom without her consent, which she finds distressing.
  • Mitchell harasses Lucy on multiple occasions, including through physical intimidation by invading her personal space.
  • Mitchell is accused of raping his ex-girlfriend Emma – this may distress some viewers.
  • Teenage girls are ranked by other students based on derogatory categories, such as “most bangable” and “best rig” – they find this distressing.
  • A transgender teenager discusses being ‘deadnamed’ by other students (using her pre-transition name) – this may distress some viewers.

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in this movie:

  • MacBook laptop
  • Apple iPhone
  • JanSport backpack
  • Mario Kart video game
  • Doritos
  • Monster energy drinks
  • Google
  • Coca Cola
  • Microsoft Surface Pro laptop
  • YouTube
  • Apple Air Pods
  • Beats by Dre headphones
  • The North Face jacket.

Sexual references

There are some sexual references in this movie, including:

  • Male characters engage in sexualising and sexually harassing behaviours toward female characters (e.g., slapping bottoms, forcing females to sit on their laps, etc.).

Nudity and sexual activity

There is some nudity and sexual activity in this movie, including:

  • Vivian and Seth kiss throughout the film and discuss having sex for the first time.
  • Teenagers are seen making out at a party.
  • A teenage girl alleges that she had been raped by her ex-boyfriend.

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in this movie, including:

  • Alcohol (consumed by minors).

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Fuck
  • Shit
  • Bitch
  • Asshole
  • Dick.

In a nutshell

Moxie is a film about young adults and identity, directed by comedian Amy Pohler. With strong themes of intersectional feminism and racial inequality, this film provides a current and thoughtful exploration of gender and respect. Due to the themes and plot, this film will likely entertain viewers aged 13 and older, with parental guidance recommended to 15 due to themes of sexual violence and harassment and sexual references.

The main messages from this movie are that standing up for important causes – especially those that impact vulnerable members of society – is an honourable enterprise; and that women deserve respect and to feel safe at school from harassment, discrimination, and sexual violence.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • Being brave in the face of challenge by those in positions of power.
  • Staying true to yourself and your beliefs.
  • Supporting friends and vulnerable people in times of need.

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children attitudes and behaviours, and their real-life consequences, such as:

  • Gender inequality and the systemic nature of sexually and gender-based harassment in society.
  • The real-life consequences of underage drinking and throwing parties without parental supervision.
  • The real-life consequences of vandalising property.