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Becoming | 2020 | PG | – 1.2.2

content-ratingsWhy is “Becoming” rated PG? The MPAA rating has been assigned for “some thematic elements and brief language.” The Kids-In-Mind.com evaluation includes a few kissing scenes, several discussions about the political process and being judged, discussions of police violence and racism, discussions of minority teens trying to navigate racism, and some moderate language. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.”


Documentary about Michelle Obama’s life after 8 years at the White House, being the target of attention and adulation, as well as disparagement and malicious gossip. It follows the former First Lady as she conducts a 34-city book tour for her 2018 memoir “Becoming.” With Michelle Obama, Melissa Winter, Stephen Colbert, Gayle King, Valerie Jarrett and Barack Obama. Directed by Nadia Hallgren. [Running Time: 1:29]

Becoming SEX/NUDITY 1

 – Two men kiss and hug tenderly. A husband and his wife kiss in a few scenes.
 A woman talks about the Marriage Equality Act being passed and its significance. A woman talks about meeting her husband and how she fell in love with him. A woman makes reference to “twerking.”
 A woman wears several off-the-shoulder and low cut tops and dresses that reveal some cleavage throughout the movie.


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Becoming VIOLENCE/GORE 2

 – We see photos of several men, a woman and a teenage boy, who were each killed by police. We see a funeral after a mass shooting with many mourners gathered.
 We hear a news report that 7 bullets struck the White House. We see security with a dog examining a press room in the White House. The cover of The New Yorker magazine shows President Obama dressed and resembling Osama bin Laden and Michelle Obama as an armed extremist; also several news outlets refer to a hand gesture they shared as a “terrorist” gesture.
 A woman breathes heavily and cries (seems like she might faint) when she meets Michelle Obama. A woman asks Michelle Obama if when leaving the White House she felt, “Free at last.” Michelle Obama states that when choosing a political life, “Your life is not your own anymore.” Michelle Obama talks about being told as a teenager, “I don’t think you’re Princeton material” by a school guidance counselor. Michelle Obama relates that her college roommate moved out when she found out that Michelle was black because her mother was terrified that she would be in danger. A teen girl talks about having lived in subsidized housing all her life and feeling “invisible.” A teen girl talks about having to work while in high school because her father had an accident and is unable to work and that she has a younger brother that she needs to take care of. Michelle Obama talks about being framed as an “Angry Black Woman” by the press during her husband’s presidential campaign. Michelle Obama talks about her father dying from Multiple Sclerosis. Michelle Obama discusses the “level of perfection” that she thought was expected of her and her family as representatives of the United States. Secret Service detail discusses security measures for Michelle Obama. Michelle Obama talks about being a descendent of slaves and that a great grandmother was in bondage. Several Native American teens talk about being “Reservation kids” and trying to fit in when they leave the Reservation. Michelle Obama talks about the need to maintain a sense of self in a marriage.


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Becoming LANGUAGE 2

 – 2 mild obscenities, name-calling (big stuff, sassy, feisty, too strict, dumb, nerdy, trifling Black man, angry Black woman, Little Potato), exclamations (wow, oh my goodness, oof, zip it, oooh), 9 religious exclamations (e.g. Like Our God [in song lyrics], A God Like You [song title], God Bless You, God Is Good, God, Oh Good Lord, a prayer is recited before an interview). | profanity glossary |


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Becoming SUBSTANCE USE

 – People drink wine with a meal.


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Becoming DISCUSSION TOPICS

 – Michelle Obama, Barack Obama, South side of Chicago, racism, sexism, slavery, police brutality, goals, discouraging goals, aspirations, FOX News, conservative media outlets, GOP, propaganda, media outlets making up controversies, planning organizing, postpartum depression, parental favoritism, politics, vilification, finding the tools within yourself to succeed, stereotypes, partnerships in marriage, classism, tribalism, post-racial era, fear, white flight, being responsible for your own happiness, supports systems, returning home, Multiple Sclerosis, legacy admissions, trauma, disappointment, Affirmative Action, diversity, death of a parent.

Becoming MESSAGE

 – There’s no returning to “normal” life after being in the center of the world’s and the media’s attention for several years.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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