A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Communication and compassion are important in showing acceptance and forgiveness. Small acts of kindness can go a long way. Holding grudges causes pain to everyone involved. Miracles can be found where you least expect them. Hope can offer great strength.
Positive Role Models
Chrissie, Eileen, and Lily all harbor pain and anger from the past surrounding a death in the town. They all blame each other, but each feel guilt that they carry with them, which can make them behave cruelly toward each other. However, they gradually let their guards down and communicate more, admit their own faults and show compassion toward each other. Dolly feels guilty that her son doesn't talk and is desperate to try anything to help him, but learns that showing him kindness and acceptance is just as important.
The four lead characters are White women of differing ages, from late 20s to late 80s. While gender roles are reinforced within their home -- in terms of the men either working or going to the pub and the women cooking and cleaning -- all four women show independence and buck against their husbands wishes in taking a trip to Lourdes. The husbands are shown to struggle with domestic duties on their own, poking fun at their inability to exist without their wives. Religious references throughout; the central characters go on a pilgrimage to Lourdes that's organized through their local Catholic church.
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Violence & Scariness
Mention of a person drowned at sea, with the implication it may have been suicide. Reference to the death of a mother and a son. Funeral with coffin lowered into ground. Reference to lump in breast and possibility of cancer. Passing mention of smacking a child. Reference to miscarriage and abortion.
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Language includes "feckers," "shite," "bastard," "bollocks," "bloody," "hell," "arse," "bleedin'," and "Christ on a bike." The British slang "shagging" is heard and "Jesus" is used as an exclamation.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters smoke cigarettes and drink alcohol -- once to the point of mild intoxication. Prescription benzodiazepines taken by a character and seen in a medicine cabinet alongside other medication.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Miracle Club is a touching comedy-drama about four women who go on a pilgrimage to Lourdes in the hope of experiencing a miracle. The film stars Laura Linney, Maggie Smith, Kathy Bates, and Agnes O'Casey in the central roles, providing a diverse age range; late 20s to late 80s. The Lourdes trip is organized through the local Catholic church and there are religious references throughout. There is mention of death and a funeral shown, and also references to abortion and miscarriage. Set in the 1960s, characters drink and smoke, and one takes prescription pills. Strong language includes "fecking" and "shite," while there are also exclamations of "Jesus" and "Christ." Some of the characters' behavior is cruel toward each other, but it is shown to be driven by pain and they learn to communicate and show compassion toward each other along the way. Some of the mature themes and fairly frequent strong language make this otherwise heartwarming drama suitable for teens and adults, but less so for younger children. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
A cast of Oscar winners and nominees, and a screenplay that isn't afraid to dig beneath the surface, lift this heartwarming comedy-drama into something more than a sweet tale of road trip friendship. The Miracle Club unites three generations of women in shared trauma and watches them unravel before coming together to heal. It's not surprising with the likes of Smith, Bates, and Linney onboard that the acting both tugs on the heartstrings and makes you laugh out loud, while relative newcomer O'Casey proves one to watch, with plenty of screen presence of her own. The fairy tale-like setting of Lourdes is in stark contrast to the small Irish town of Ballygar, the cinematography creating a place of open space and awe next to the oppressive rooms and claustrophobia of the women's lives back home. It's easy to see how things that were kept bottled up suddenly begin to escape as the women find emotional release and a healing that can only come with being set free.
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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.