Swing Kids

Swing Kids
Swing Kids
  • PG-13
  • 1h 54m
  • 1993
Rotten53%
Common Sense Media Iconage 14+
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It's 1939 and Nazi Germany has declared war on freedom, demanding conformity from its youth. But a group calling themselves SWING KIDS rebel with their "swing" music from America and dare to stand up against the powerful forces around them. Robert Sean Leonard and Christian Bale deliver gripping performances as two friends who must choose between their individual freedom or loyalty to the murderous Third Reich. Also featuring Barbara Hershey, SWING KIDS is an inspirational and powerful story about finding the courage to fight for what you believe in!

Common Sense Media

Common Sense Media Iconage 14+
Common Sense Says
Intense conflict in coming-of-age movie set in Nazi Germany.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Swing Kids is a 1993 movie about jazz-obsessed teens during Nazi Germany who are forced to choose between staying true to themselves or conforming to the Third Reich. The depictions of teens getting excited about the contemporary music of the time and how it fits into their overall spirit of rebellion has obvious parallels to the youth culture movements of later decades, but it's also the unsparing depiction of how the major and minor characters responded to oppressive brutality of the Nazis that should also inspire discussion amongst families about the horrors of that time and what it meant to be an ordinary citizen trying to survive. Unsurprisingly, there are scenes in which Jews are being persecuted, as well as propaganda films from that time comparing the Jews to vermin. The swing music of Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, and Django Reinhardt is deemed "["N" word] [Jewish slur] music" by the Nazis, and we see a propaganda poster showing a monkey playing a saxophone. There are some streetfights, brawls, and boxing matches in which characters are shown getting beaten and bloodied. Profanity includes "f--k." Swing Kids are shown passing around small black-and-white photos of topless women, and make remarks about their breasts. Reference made to masturbation. The overall dramatic intensity of the film might be difficult for younger or more sensitive viewers, but overall, this movie is a history lesson on how youth culture and rebellion persists amidst oppression, and how they inspire resistance.

A Lot or A Little?

The parents’ guide to what’s in this movie.
Positive Messages
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Positive Role Models
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Violence
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Sex
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Language
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Additional Info

  • Genre:Drama
  • Release Date:March 5, 1993
  • Languages:English, Spanish
  • Captions:English, Spanish
  • Audio Format:
    5.1
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