Little Women (2019) is undoubtedly the best movie adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s book that I’ve seen. Greta Gerwig’s modern touches make this a fun and different take on a classic. Is Little Women kid friendly? With a PG rating for thematic elements and brief smoking, overall Little Women is a family friendly movie, and I’d recommend it for kids ages 10 and up. Let’s take a look at language, violence, and mature content in 2019’s Little Women.
Is Little Women Kid Friendly?
Little Women tells the story of the beloved March sisters- Jo, Meg, Beth, and Amy- 4 women determined to live life on their own terms. I want every one of my daughters to watch this movie, but the reason why I recommend it for ages 10 and up is interest level and length of movie. At over 2 hours long, this may be hard for little ones to sit through. It’s not exactly an action-packed movie.
There’s a lot of dialogue, and there are emotional moments that could be heavy for younger children. Is Little Women appropriate for children under 8? Content wise, sure, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
There is no language in Little Women.
The sisters get in a fight and slap and hit each other.
There are some mature topics like gender roles, death, love, jealousy, war and marriage. There are a few kisses, but nothing scandalous. Be mindful of some smoking and drinking.
Why Teens Should Watch Little Women
I don’t know if Little Women is required reading in school anymore, but chances are classics such as these are being tabled for other novels, if reading is even still required in Middle School and High School. When I read it, I was annoyed at the way women were treated and the low expectations society had for them during the 1800s.
However Greta Gerwig makes this adaptation seem like a love letter to women. And no, I didn’t get an over-the-top feminist vibe, though some of the movie quotes from Little Women like Jo’s “I can’t get over my disappointment of being a girl,” made me chuckle. But you do get the stubborn, headstrong qualities in some of the characters that make you question outdated thinking.
Gerwig’s humor is subtle and witty, even looks exchanged between characters were well-placed and appreciated. She nailed the complexity and love between sisters. Nothing felt forced.
As a mother of 5 girls, I can attest to the struggle of watching your daughters envy and detest certain characteristics in siblings. While none of the March sisters were perfect, it was easy to love them despite their flaws, which is what any of us are asked to do as humans. If you have siblings, watch this.
Marmee (the mother) teaches kindness and patience. Deep down, you know the girls want to exhibit these qualities while also struggling with the desire to be selfish. I kept thinking this certainly feels like real life.
How is the Little Women Movie Different than the Book?
Right of the bat you’ll notice the difference from other adaptations in that Little Women (2019) starts off with the March sisters as adult-ish and woven into the story are flashbacks from their childhood. At first I was a little confused, then quickly caught on, and enjoyed the way Jo’s story was told.
Amy is a little more sassy, which I liked, giving Jo a sparring partner. It’s not so clear cut that Jo is everyone’s favorite. Also the ending is a little different (I won’t spoil it), but I think fans of the book and movie will be satisfied.
Sweet, full of spitfire and goodness, it’s hard not to fall in love with every March sister, imperfections and all. If you’re going to watch any film version of Little Women with your family, let it be this one. Gerwig nailed every feeling on what it’s like to have and be a sister.