Theater kids (young and old!) have this one on their Netflix calendar for sure. But is tick, tick… BOOM safe for kids to watch? This parent review and guide will help you decide how kid-friendly this musical is for your family. ps- don’t forget to peep the movie quotes from tick tick BOOM too!
About tick, tick… BOOM!
Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winner Lin-Manuel Miranda makes his feature directorial debut with tick, tick…BOOM!, an adaptation of the autobiographical musical by Jonathan Larson, who revolutionized theater as the creator of Rent.
The film follows Jon (Academy Award nominee and Tony Award winner Andrew Garfield), a young theater composer who’s waiting tables at a New York City diner in 1990 while writing what he hopes will be the next great American musical.
Days before he’s due to showcase his work in a make-or-break performance, Jon is feeling the pressure from everywhere: from his girlfriend Susan, who dreams of an artistic life beyond New York City; from his friend Michael, who has moved on from his dream to a life of financial security; amidst an artistic community being ravaged by the AIDS epidemic.
With the clock ticking, Jon is at a crossroads and faces the question everyone must reckon with: What are we meant to do with the time we have?
You can watch the tick, tick… BOOM! trailer here.
Is tick, tick… BOOM Safe For Kids? Parent Movie Review
If your kids are interested in the theater or have some background about the show Rent, then they are likely asking to see this movie about Jonathan Larson’s life.
They may also be big Hamilton and Lin-Manuel Miranda fans- who isn’t?- especially with the younger generation of theater kids.
But is tick, tick… BOOM! appropriate for all kids? What ages can watch this one? And is tick, tick… BOOM! safe for the kids in your household to watch?
Here’s what you need to know about the language, violence, sex/nudity, and adult content in tick, tick… BOOM! to determine if it’s kid-friendly for your family.
Is tick, tick… BOOM Safe For Kids: Language
There is a smattering of swears and curse words in this movie.
However, if your child is already consuming theater productions and musicals, this one is actually fairly tame compared to other shows they may have seen.
The swears really aren’t used too often, but please note: a couple are part of song lyrics.
So if hearing your kids repeat h@ll or d@mn or the F-bomb in the context of a song is a big concern for you, please be aware of this. Maybe take a listen to the soundtrack to decide how the language is used before watching with your child.
We heard uses of the words h@ll, p@ssy, Oh My G-d, pain in the @ss, p!ssed, G-d d@mn, Jesus Christ, and sh!t. The F-bomb was used in song.
There were also a few minor instances of language that parents need to be aware of in tick, tick… BOOM! with phrases like “that sucks” and “screw that” used.
Violence In tick, tick… BOOM
There are no violence or major action sequences to be concerned about in the movie.
tick, tick… BOOM! takes place in New York City, with the majority focus on Jon working on a song solo.
He’s seen in the city, in his apartment, at work, and in rehearsals where nothing violent occurs.
Is tick, tick, BOOM! Ok For Kids? Sex and Nudity
There is one scene where Jon and Susan wind up falling into bed together.
The whole song is pretty sexual that accompanies this section (Green Green Dress) as well.
They are seen kissing and pulling at each other’s clothes, but no actual nudity or sex occurs on screen.
It’s clear where their intentions are going, so the thought is there. But the actual visuals stop short of any sex or nudity happening in front of us.
Adult Content: Is tick, tick… BOOM! Kid-Friendly?
tick, tick… BOOM! is rated PG-13 and that is a fair rating on the surface. Based on the sex, language, and violence levels mentioned above, we don’t think it’s particularly shocking or offensive.
The adult content is where parents will have to decide if this one is ok for their kids, primarily the discussions that will occur around the AIDS crisis that is front and center in the artist community at the time.
While we feel tick, tick… BOOM is safe for kids who are already exposed to musical theater, calling it kid-friendly is a bit of a stretch due to the adult content.
Just be sure you are ready to discuss some of the hard themes that come up in this one surrounding bigotry, death, and illness with your kids. This one might be best pre-screened if you have any concerns about broaching those topics.
What Ages Are Appropriate For tick, tick, BOOM?
Will kids find this show interesting or worth sitting through almost 2 hours? If they are a lover of musicals, then absolutely!
As always, you know your kids best.
We feel this is a solid middle school and up movie which aligns well with the PG-13 rating.
A mature 10-year-old could enjoy tick, tick… BOOM! (ours will), but they will likely have a lot of questions after. Especially when they see you, the adult, crying their eyes out over some of the sequences.
It’s an emotional movie that aims and hits directly in the Gen X heart and memories.
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Patty Holliday is a parent movie reviewer, writer, and podcaster living in the Washington, DC area. Her goal is to bridge the gap between casual fandom and picky critic with parent movie and television reviews. As a lifelong fangirl and pop culture connoisseur, she’s been creating online since 2009. You can find her work at No-Guilt Disney.com, No-Guilt Fangirl.com, No-Guilt Life, and as host of the top-rated No-Guilt Disney Podcast.