Bright Star

2009 PG 1h 59m DVD

Bright Star

2009 PG 1h 59m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
Critically acclaimed Australian filmmaker Jane Campion helms this drama detailing the passionate three-year romance between 19th-century Romantic poet John Keats (Ben Whishaw) -- who died tragically at age 25 -- and his great love and muse, Fanny Brawne (Abbie Cornish). Much of the story was inspired by Keats's poetry and the actual love letters the pair exchanged. Thomas Sangster, Paul Schneider and Kerry Fox co-star.
Ben Whishaw, Abbie Cornish, Paul Schneider, Kerry Fox, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Samuel Barnett, Edie Martin, Gerard Monaco, Alfred Harmsworth, Antonia Campbell-Hughes, Roger Ashton-Griffiths, Claudie Blakley, Samuel Roukin, Amanda Hale, Lucinda Raikes, Jonathan Aris, Olly Alexander
Jane Campion
Widescreen Anamorphic 1.85:1
English: Dolby Digital 5.1
PG - Some material may not be suitable for children. Parents urged to give parental guidance. May contain some material parents might not like for their young children.
age 12+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 12+
age 12+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that this moving period romance is tame on the surface -- there's virtually no violence, sex, strong language or other iffy content -- but it has an undercurrent of sexual longing fueled by social barriers that complicate the characters' ability to be with the people they love. And though the story is told with a great deal of grace, it does have a bit of grit (but virtually no violence, sex, strong language, or other iffy content). First, there's the consumption that finally claims poet John Keats -- its progression is delicately but truthfully depicted. Also, Keats' best friend is dismissive of those with no interest in poetry (i.e., Fanny, who's passionate about sewing instead), and there's some discussion about Fanny's virginity, but the conversations are oblique (and nothing more than kissing and hand-holding is shown on screen).

Sexual Content

A fair amount of flirting, hand-holding, and gentle kissing -- plus one sonnet-reading scene that has a very passionate, sensuous feel. One character pursues a maid and gets her pregnant (though they aren't seen together in bed).


Two men have an argument, with one goading the other to fight out of anger. Some shoving. A main character eventually dies, though from illness, rather than violence.


"Idiot" is firmly in the lexicon. "Damn" is also used.

Social Behavior

The film celebrates young love and devotion, as well as passion -- for something or someone (in this case, Keats' for poetry, Fanny's for fashion, and both characters for each other). Keats' friends are very supportive of him, as is Fanny's family of her. There's some class tension -- the film doesn't shy away from the double standard that prevents Fanny from marrying Keats but allows an upper-class man to dally with a maid with no consequences.


Not applicable

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

Characters drink and smoke socially on a few occasions. The smoking is accurate for the movie's time period.

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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