A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Themes include the futility of war, and love for family and for country.
Positive Role Models
Marie-Laure is intelligent, strong, courageous, independent; she risks her life to help the Allies. Werner Pfenning is a Nazi soldier but tries to hold on to his humanity despite what he's done. Daniel LeBlanc dies protecting his daughter.
Marie-Laure is blind, as is Aria Mia Loberti (the actor who plays her). Main characters are White French and Germans. A secondary character is Black; a background character is Asian.
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Violence & Scariness
Lots of war violence, including bombings, point-blank shootings and killings, bloody wounds, acts of torture, etc. References made about killing Jews and others. Violent bullying among young men. Nazi officers bully everyone around them.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A French character serves Germans as a sex worker and is shown beginning to unbutton her dress.
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Crude epithets like "pig" and curses like "s--t" are sometimes used.
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Products & Purchases
The series is based on an award-winning novel.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Wine, sherry, and hard liquor is consumed. Cigarette smoking is also visible.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that All the Light We Cannot See is adapted from Anthony Doerr's popular and award-winning novel set in World War II. It contains lots of violence, including point-blank shootings, bloody wounds, bombings, torture, and physical combat. There are also scenes of ruthless bullying among young people. Nazi references about Jews are used, and on occasion crude words and curses are audible. There's some innuendo, and drinking and smoking are shown.
Is It Any Good?
The disappointing adaptation of Anthony Doerr's award-winning novel offers an awkwardly paced narrative that lacks the heart and depth of the original story. While it has some cinematic flair, fans of the book may feel that the overall series offers more style than substance due to some key plot changes and the often trite dialogue, which was written by Peaky Blinders' Steven Knight. Some may also find parts of this four-part series confusing, thanks to flashbacks that are informative but create a disjointed storytelling process.
Its inability to deliver well-developed characters and its reliance on common World War II tropes lead to the most egregious failure of All the Light We Cannot See: It glosses over the difficult moral questions Doerr raises in his work, including the lengths to which an active Nazi soldier can be simultaneously good and evil. Nonetheless, the overall production effectively manages to underscore the futility of war, and to those who haven't read the book, it offers a mildly entertaining historical drama.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.