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Monte Carlo (2011) - Movie Review for Parents

About.com Rating 3 Star Rating
User Rating 3.5 Star Rating (2 Reviews)

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Monte Carlo Movie Poster
Poster © 20th Century Fox

Bottom line: Monte Carlo is a tween/teen comedy romance adventure that centers around the theme of being true to one's self. The movie contains some mild language and a few instances of main characters making poor choices like lying or stealing.

MPAA Rating: PG (for brief mild language)
Guide age recommendation: 10+
Genre: Comedy/Teen romance
Runtime: Approx. 109 minutes
Starring: Selena Gomez, Leighton Meester, Katie Cassidy
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: July 1, 2011

Monte Carlo - The Story

Grace (Selena Gomez) has never been a big fan of high school, but she's held on by working hard to save up for her dream: a graduation trip to Paris with her older best friend Emma (Katie Cassidy). Finally, graduation day has come, but a wrench is thrown in Grace and Emma's big plan when Grace's father informs her that her very uptight older stepsister Meg (Leighton Meester) will be joining them. To top it off, Emma's boyfriend Owen threatens to end their relationship if she leaves for the City of Love.

Still, the three girls press forward and embark on what they hope will be a life-changing adventure. Their first few days in Paris don't go so well, though, and it looks like their trip will be a big disappointment. That is, until Grace is mistaken for a wealthy British socialite named Cordelia Winthrop Scott.

With a little pushing from Emma, Meg and Grace agree to seize the moment and experience the life of a spoiled rich girl. Lucky for them, the real Cordelia has decided to shirk her duties for a while and go party with some friends, so Grace can step into her life without anyone realizing the difference.

Before they know it, the girls are in Monte Carlo for a charity auction. They live the high life going to balls, experiencing new things, and finding boys to fall for. Unfortunately, they are keenly aware that one slip could cause their whole facade to come crashing down.

Monte Carlo - Guide Review for Parents

Monte Carlo Movie Photo

Grace (Selena Gomez, left), Meg (Leighton Meester, center) and Emma (Katie Cassidy)

Photo © Twentieth Century Fox and Regency Enterprises. All rights reserved.

Monte Carlo is a lighthearted adventure/romance for girls and teens. Girls will likely adore the movie, which is beautifully filmed and gives off an air of a trendy and fun yet totally sophisticated tea party. The different personalities of the leading ladies are as colorful as the palettes that characterize the settings in each filming location, and each young woman grows in a different way and learns something different about herself.

Obviously, in impersonating another person and using all of her stuff, including a necklace worth millions, the girls do some things that are dishonest; however, those little indiscretions are balanced out in a way by the fact that one of the reasons they keep the charade going is that Grace cares about the charity event and knows that Cordelia wouldn't do it justice. Also, with complete acceptance of any consequences that might come, the girls are honest and take responsibility when it's time to come clean.

In one scene, though, Meg (who is finally letting go of her bitterness and learning to live life) steals a flower from the an old lady peddler, gives it to her new beau and runs away. This scene seems to show what a free spirit she's becoming, yet her actions aren't ever redeemed, and it feels out of place and very unfortunate.

Thus, the film gives some mixed messages, though it ends on a positive note. Parents should also be aware that the girls all have or find boyfriend types in the movie, and each of them gets kissed at least once. Also, some mild language is used, including the word "ass." For more details about the content in the movie, please see the overview below.

Monte Carlo - Content Overview

*May contain spoilers.

  • Violence (Low): Some mild slapstick violence occurs. One character slaps a boy for kissing her. In order to accomplish a greater good, a few characters tie another one up against her will and hold her there for a while.
  • Scary Scenes (Low): Some young kids may be frightened or unsettled during parts in the movie where the girls might get caught and get in trouble. Or, during one scene when the girls have to navigate a high, narrow ledge to escape being caught, with one of the girls being particularly afraid of heights.
  • Sex/Nudity (Low): During some scenes, girls in the movie wear revealing and/or sexy outfits. One girl tells another that she has "hoochie" heels. Several kisses happen throughout the movie. A heavy-set man is shown bathing in a tub (nothing explicit is shown).
  • Drugs and Alcohol (Medium) Guests are shown drinking various wines and champagne at events and in places throughout the movie.
  • Language (Medium): The word "ass" is used. Some other rude words like "butt" are used.
Monte Carlo Movie PhotoPhoto © Twentieth Century Fox and Regency Enterprises. All rights reserved.

  • Disrespectful/Imitative Behavior (Extreme): The main characters conspire to impersonate someone and thus use her stuff without permission and lie to everyone. A girl steals a rose from a peddler. Owen tells Emma that if she leaves their relationship is over. Cordelia is rumored to be a party girl who has done some scandalous things. She leaves to party with friends and tries to hide it from her mother.
  • Sad/Unsettling Scenes (Medium): Meg's mother passed away a while ago, and she is still dealing with feelings from that. She is uncomfortable with her father remarrying.
  • Movie Topics Kids Might Have Questions About: impersonation, death of a parent, divorce, remarriage, stealing, love and relationships, the needs of children in poor parts of the world.
Disclosure: The studio provided a free screening of this movie for review purposes. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

User Reviews

 4 out of 5
Amazing!, Member

I thought the movie was GREAT it was definitely the best movie I have seen for ages and the characters were all played really well! The movie is amazing and it says the movie is 'dishonest' and yes f…More

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