Become a Premium Member | Only $2 a month

► You're making sure we survive
► Exclusive previews
► No more ads


White Oleander



Although our site is very popular, the current economic climate has reduced our revenues just when we need extra security to prevent attacks from hackers who don't like what we do. If you think what we do is worthwhile, please donate or become a member.


Unlike the MPAA we do not assign one inscrutable rating based on age, but 3 objective ratings for SEX/NUDITY, VIOLENCE/GORE and PROFANITY on a scale of 0 to 10, from lowest to highest, depending on quantity and context.

 [more »]

Sex & Nudity
Violence & Gore
1 to 10

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Somber drama chronicling the life of Astrid (Alison Lohman), a young teenager who's struggling to come to terms with living without a stable, loving family. Astrid is forced through a series of foster homes after her mother (Michelle Pfeiffer) goes to prison for committing a crime of passion. Also with Patrick Fugit, Noah Wyle and Robin Wright. [1:49]

SEX/NUDITY 4 - We hear a woman moaning and banging on a wall suggesting that she and a man are having sex. A man in a robe opens a door and a woman goes into the house: it is implied that the man and woman have sex but nothing is shown. We see a couple making out in the background in a party scene. A man and woman kiss and hug, and a teenage boy and girl kiss and hug a few times. An older man touches a teenage girl's face tenderly (it is suggested that they had sex, but we see nothing else). A woman and two teenage girls are shown in a dressing room in their underwear (the woman wears a thong) exposing cleavage, bare abdomens and buttocks. A woman wears skin-tight outfits that reveal cleavage, her bare back and shoulders in many scenes. A woman wears a leather halter-top (revealing cleavage and bare abdomen) and a mini-skirt (revealing thighs). A woman wears a slinky negligee, a woman wears an oversized shirt that is unbuttoned to show cleavage and her bare abdomen, and a teenage girl wears tank tops that reveal cleavage. A man is shown bare-chested. There is some sexual innuendo: A woman talks about having been an exotic dancer, a woman accuses a teenage girl of trying to take away the man in her life, a teenage daughter asks her mother if a man spent the night, and a woman says a man is "getting what he wants from somebody else." A woman tells her daughter that she and a man had sex, a woman says that her daughter is "hormonal," a woman says she's busy "fighting off sexual advances" in prison, and a woman tells her teenage daughter that the relationship she had with her father was a "sexual" one.

VIOLENCE/GORE 4 - A woman threatens a teenage girl with a gun, then shoots her in the shoulder; we see blood on her shirtsleeve and see a scar in later scenes. A man pounds on a window breaking it (while yelling that he is going to kill the woman inside) and a woman opens a switchblade knife and cuts his hand (we see this scene a few times and we see some blood on the man's hand). A teenage girl puts a knife to the throat of another girl and threatens her. Two teenage girls fight with shoving, yelling and name-calling (one ends up with a bruised eye and a split lip). A teenage girl finds a woman dead from an overdose, she tries to revive her and screams and yells in anger. A woman tells her teenage daughter that she "wanted to throw her against a wall." Loud pounding awakens a girl who sees her mother struggling against police who take her away. A woman yells at her daughter abusively, tries to hit her and the daughter threatens her mother. Men and woman argue bitterly in many scenes. A woman has a bruised eye and cheek apparently from a beating in prison. A movie on TV shows a woman being killed by a man with a chainsaw (it cuts away just before we see anything). A teenage boy talks about having been born addicted to heroin. A teenage girl cuts her hair with a knife. A woman says, "tell him I was killed..." We see fires burning in the mountains near homes.

PROFANITY 5 - 1 F-word, 5 sexual references (1 in Spanish, not translated), 3 scatological terms, 4 anatomical terms, 6 mild obscenities, 3 religious profanities, 6 religious exclamations. [profanity glossary]

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Premeditated murder, beauty, rejection, infidelity, paranoia, loneliness, sacrifice, dysfunctional relationships, redemption, teenage pregnancy, cynicism, Children's Services and foster care, hypocrisy, jealousy.

MESSAGE - It's better to know what is true than to believe in what feels good. Don't forget who you are.

(Note: People are shown smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol. It is suggested that one character has a drinking problem and has had a drug problem. A character yells at her daughter for accepting Christianity and her daughter tells her that "thinking for yourself is evil." A foster child is shown pregnant and we hear that she has had two other babies.)

Special Keywords: S4 - V4 - P5 - MPAAPG-13

Our Ratings Explained

Tell Friends About Our Site

Become a Member

A CAVEAT: We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and some of our early standards were not as stringent as they are now. We therefore need to revisit many older reviews, especially those written prior to 1998 or so; please keep this in mind if you're consulting a review from that period. While we plan to revisit and correct older reviews our resources are limited and it is a slow, time-consuming process.

INAPPROPRIATE ADS? We have little control over ads since we belong to ad agencies that serve ads automatically; a standing order should prevent provocative ads, but inappropriate ads do sneak in.
What you can do



Become a member: You can subscribe for as little as a couple of dollars a month and gain access to our premium site, which contains no ads whatsoever. Think about it: You'll be helping support our site and guarantee that we will continue to publish, and you will be able to browse without any commercial interruptions.


Tell all your friends: Please recommend to your friends and acquaintances; you'll be helping them by letting them know how useful our site is, while helping us by increasing our readership. Since we do not advertise, the best and most reliable way to spread the word is by word-of-mouth.


Alert local & national media: Let major media know why you trust our ratings. Call or e-mail a local newspaper, radio station or TV channel and encourage them to do a story about our site. Since we do not have a PR firm working for us, you can be our media ambassadors.

Copyright © 1992- Critics. All rights reserved. "Kids-In-Mind™" and "Movie Ratings That Actually Work™" are Service Marks of Critics. For legal queries please see our Terms of Use; for comments or questions see our contact page.