Box Office Mom: The Girl on the Train, Middle School

Each week our box office mom is here with the scoop on the new movies your kids may be asking to see. Jackie Solberg saw "The Girl on the Train" and "Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life" and is here now with her reviews from a parent's point of vie

Rating:  1 out of 5 popcorn buckets

Release Date: October 10, 2016

MPAA Rating: R

Best Age Group: 17+

Sexual Content: Excessive

Violent/Disturbing Content: Excessive

Crude or Profane Language: Excessive

Drug and Alcohol Content: Excessive

Will Teens Like It?  Yes



The Girl on the Train

Rachel Watson (Emily Blunt) is the girl on the train. When Rachel is on her daily commutes she admires two homes  from the window of her train. One of the homes used to be hers. The couple living there is her ex-husband and his new wife, who was once his blond mistress. The home next door seemingly has the perfect couple. The woman is blond and beautiful and is typically seen kissing her handsome husband. However, everything changes when Rachel witnesses something shocking from one of the homes' backyards. Now Rachel is involved in their lives more than just passing by on the train. Based on a popular fiction novel, The Girl On The Train.”

Talking Points:

   •     The film focuses on infidelity, and two unhappily married couples.

Sexual Content: Excessive

   •     We see intimate sexual relationships between married couples and some having affairs. We not only see them in bed, but also in the shower, in front of a window and in the woods.

   •     The girl on the train watches a couple making love in front of a window.

   •     A female character tries to seduce her therapist. She unzips his pants and sucks on his fingers.

Violent/Disturbing Content:

   •     We see a woman tortured and murdered.

   •     A woman falls asleep in the bath tub with her baby on her chest. The baby accidentally drowns.

   •     Character's are shown breaking mirrors in a fit of rage.

   •     A male character encourages his mistress to have an affair.

   •     A man is stabbed and bleeds to death. We see him covered in blood.

Crude or Profane Language: Excessive

   •     We hear the f-word numerous times throughout the film. We also hear, "a--," "h---," and "b--ch."

Drug and Alcohol Content: Excessive

   •     Rachel, the girl on the train, has a serious drinking problem. We see her pouring Vodka in a water bottle. She's constantly drunk. She eventually attends  AA.

Will Teens Like It? Yes

   •     Based on a popular novel of which many teens have read.

Overall this is not a movie for kids or pre-teens.



Middle School

Rating: 4 out of 5 popcorn buckets

Release Date: October 7, 2016

MPAA Rating: PG

Best Age Group: 9+

Sexual Content: Mild

Violent/Disturbing Content: Moderate

Crude or Profane Language: Moderate

Drug and Alcohol Content: Mild

Will Kids/ Teens Like It? Yes

Rafe Khatchadorian (Griffin Gluck) is a very creative middle school age boy. He loves to draw cartoons, aliens and spaceships and keeps them in a special art notebook. Though Rafe doesn't have many friends, he is very close with his younger sister Georgia.  However, he and his family are dealing with a tremendous heartbreak. Rafe's brother (who was also his best friend) had passed away a year before. His father left the family after their loss so his mom (Lauren Graham) is doing her best to raise the kids on her own, and with the help of her goofy boyfriend. Not only is Rafe trying to cope with his family drama he also has a hard time following rules. After getting kicked out of two schools he's now in a new middle school. So when his rule driven principal takes his art notebook, Rafe retaliates by setting a goal to break every rule in the principal's the adventures and pranks begin. Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life, is comedy based on James Paterson's young adult novel, Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life.

Talking Points:

   •     The film centers around a middle school boy who breaks the school rules. Rafe is questioning all the unnecessary school rules. The principal is more concerned with his rules and the students' successful standardized test scores than the students' well being.

   •     This is a fun and entertaining film though parents don't want their kids getting any rule breaking ideas; to name a few:

             ◦     Rafe sneaks out of his window at night and goes to school to vandalize. Some of Rafe's pranks include covering the school with colored sticky notes with various drawings and messages. He also turns a trophy case into a fish bowl, draws graffiti on the exterior of the school, and puts neon dye in the principal's hat.

             ◦     Rafe steals his mom's boyfriend's credit card number and buys supplies for their vandalizing.

   •     Parents need to be aware of the mature subject matter of losing a loved family member.

Sexual Content: Mild

   •     We see a couple kiss.

   •     There's discussion of "Expertly drawn boobs.

   •     A student says, "My mom is really hot," and the principal agrees.

Violent/Disturbing Content: Moderate

   •     A  school bully threatens to kick Rafe and knocks his notebook out of his hands.

   •     We see animated characters fighting each other. We see a two-headed alien blowing his heads off with a laser.

   •     Georgia, Rafe's younger sister who's not old enough to drive, steals their mom's boyfriend's car and intentionally sideswipe's the car wanting to damage it.

Crude or Profane Language: Moderate

   •     We hear "sh--," "F your eye," "p-ssed," "sucks," "butt wipe," "frickin,' " "jerk," and "stupid."

Drug and Alcohol Content: Mild

   •     We see character's drinking wine.

Will Kids/ Teens Like It?  Yes

Overall this is a fun and entertaining film. Having said that, parents need to be aware that the story revolves around a rebellious middle school boy who breaks a lot of school rules. 

For more reviews fromJackie, go to


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