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Parental Guidance

4.2 out of 5 stars 1,315 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Old school grandfather Artie (Billy Crystal), who is accustomed to calling the shots, meets his match when he and his eager-to-please wife Diane (Bette Midler) agree to babysit their three grandkids when their type-A helicopter parents (Marisa Tomei, Tom Everett Scott) go away for work. But when 21st century problems collide with Artie and Diane's old school methods of tough rules, lots of love and old-fashioned games, it's learning to bend -- and not holding your ground -- that binds a family together.

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Artie (Billy Crystal) and Diane (Bette Midler) realize that they're the "other grandparents"--the ones their three grandkids barely know and dread seeing. So when they have a chance to take care of Harper (Bailee Madison), Turner (Joshua Rush), and Barker (Kyle Harrison Breitkopf), Diane jumps at it, dragging a reluctant Artie along. Naturally, their old-school approach to parenting clashes with the anxious, helicopter-parenting of their daughter Alice (Marisa Tomei) and her husband Phil (Tom Everett Scott). Which will win out? There's really no suspense--contemporary parenting is an easy target and every time Artie complains about how the kids are indulged, random strangers applaud him. However, as Artie's parenting technique yoyos between threats and bribery, movie audiences may find themselves on Alice's side. Parental Guidance is a flimsy movie built around cartoonish kids with cliché problems and jokes about poop and getting hit in the crotch. The plot eventually gets stuck in a mire of nostalgia and vanity (did Midler really have to have a musical number?). But along the way there are moments between kids and grandparents--and between parents and grandparents--that are genuinely sweet. Midler is just coasting through this, but Crystal, who remains a talented and charismatic actor, puts his heart into it. --Bret Fetzer

Product Details

  • Actors: Billy Crystal, Marisa Tomei
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: March 26, 2013
  • Run Time: 105 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,315 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00AYRIUOC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,977 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Being an avid fan of Billy Crystal, I eagerly awaited his return to the silver screen. I was not disappointed. Coupled with another veteran actress in Bette Midler (his doting wife), they made we 'older' parents appear archaic with their 'tough love' approach - (didn't all Baby Boomers experience this as children?). The story goes on to explain how they are 'the only' set of grandparents available, to care for their 3 grandchildren, 12, 8 and 5, much to their daughter's reluctance. Their daughter (played by Marissa Tomei) is all about 'new age' parenting and frowns heavily upon any strayings from her teachings. Therefore laying down her set of rules and opening the door to laughter.

Naturally, things are going to go wrong, as Billy and Bette strive to keep the peace and understand their charges. As not only do the 'Oldies' react to each situation in an uninitiated new age-old age way causing havoc, but are also victims to a completely automated house which initially sees them as intruders, much to their grandies delight. PARENTIAL GUIDANCE is a movie worth taking a look at and taking your grandkids to. It's a feel good movie. And without giving away the plot, Billy Crystal plays his usual affable self, who belts out an unexpected Acapella duet with Bette, along with some great co-stars of all ages, who end up loving him in spite of his mistakes.
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Format: DVD
***This review may contain spoilers***

The trailers advertising "Parental Guidance" (hereafter PG) were not only unpromising, but borderline appalling. It emphasized the tired, painful slapstick and saccharine sentiment of so many other formulaic family comedies, that I was determined to avoid it. But, visiting my mother and deciding to take in a movie before lunch at Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse, we decided upon PG because it was the only movie that had subject matter my Mom (not particularly keen on hobbits, 40-somethings, or even Lincoln) was interested in. After seeing it, we were pleasantly (if surprisingly) entertained, despite the dilapidated old "Clash of the Generations" plot. Our amusement was largely due to those reliably schticky comedy workhorses Billy Crystal and Bette Midler.

Crystal and Midler play fairly (but not completely) old-fashioned Artie and Diane Decker, parents to Type-A, harried upper-class daughter Alice Decker Simmons (Marisa Tomei). Alice is married to Phil Simmons (Tom Everett Scott) a basically easygoing engineer who, like Rick Moranis's Wayne Szalinski in the "Honey, I.." movies has converted their home into a technological, computerized, self-sustaining "house of tomorrow". Their children are Harper (Bailee Madison), who is as neurotically driven as her mother, Turner (Joshua Rush) her more levelheaded, technologically savvy brother who has a stuttering problem, and certainly not least, the mischievous, irreverent, red-haired Barker (Kyle Harrison Breitkopf) whose best friend is an invisible kangaroo named Carl (not Harvey).

Unlike the paternal grandparents, Artie and Diane have not seen their grandchildren in months, if not years. They are "the other grandparents".
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I saw it the other day, and it was so funny, I laughed so much. It really hit home, about being grand parents. I just loved it.
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Format: DVD
We were so pleasantly surprised to see how clean and funny this movie was! I don't even know if there was one cuss word in it! We loved it so much we saw it twice at the theater! And just yesterday, when my husband saw it was still there he said, "We could go see Parental Guidance again." Haha! For those who choose movies that are clean and moral, this was one of them! A definite rarity in today's entertainment industry!
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Looking for a light comedy, I rented Parental Guidance because of Bette Midler and Billy Crystal; two of my favorite entertainers. This movie had no sex, no violence and I don't remember a single curse word (not that this is an issue for me... just a nice, unexpected change of pace). A great family film, appropriate for any age.

The basic premise of Mom and Dad needing a break from the kids, and having to call the out of favor grand parents, kind of reminded me of Uncle Buck as Billy and Bette are a barely known commodity to the kids and definitely not the first choice of their parents to watch them.

The movie focuses on struggles and resolutions. For parents, grandparents and kids. Not always perfect, but real, and well payed by Billy and Bette with a great supporting cast.

Another common theme throughout the movie (and one of the best springboards for Billy Crystal's humor...) was the generation gap. Struggles with a high-tech world that is normal for the kids, but like a foreign land to grandparents.

This movie isn't about a strong story line, it's about laughing your way through the absurdity that is sometimes our lives. The ups and downs of parenting, the wisdom of grandparents, children struggling to grow and the love that binds families amid it all.

If you're looking for a family film with strong comedic laughs, sweet moments with some tears, and a triumphant ending. You'll enjoy Parental Guidance.
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