Promising Young Woman (2020) Poster

Parents Guide

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MPAA Rated R for strong violence including sexual assault, language throughout, some sexual material and drug use

Sex & Nudity

  • In the beginning of the film, Jerry carries a drunk Cassandra to his house, where he tries to take advantage of her. He puts her on his bed and attempts to rape her (no nudity). Just as he goes down and tries to pull down Cassandra's panties, she fully awakens and demands to know what Jerry was doing.
  • Madison gives Cassandra the tape where Nina was being raped. We don't see the content but the cheering sounds of boys encouraging the rape can be heard.
  • A drug-possessed Neil kisses an intoxicated and sleepy Cassandra and proceeds to fondle her thighs under her skirt. But she wakes up and stops him.
  • In Al Monroe's bachelor party, Cassandra disguises herself as a nurse-stripper. When she is intoxicating Monroe's friends with spiked drinks, they have sexual visualizations regarding Cassandra, though it's nothing explicit. One man grabs his crotch to hide his erection.
  • Some strong sex references. A man says that he is going to ejaculate on a woman's face and bum at the same time.

Violence & Gore

  • References to a rape throughout the film, but it is never shown.
  • Cassandra breaks down a man's car with a wrench while the man quickly drives away.


  • 55 uses of "fuck". Frequent uses of "shit", "bitch" and 2 uses of "cunt" as well as "pussy" and "asshole".

Alcohol, Drugs & Smoking

  • Several scenes involving alcohol, one scene involving cocaine. Shows it being snorted and using orally
  • Some drinking and smoking. A character is shown drunk.
  • A man snorts cocaine and then forces a woman to do the same. Disturbing.

Frightening & Intense Scenes

  • The plot is centered around a woman getting revenge for her best friend's assault. Many discussions of rape are had, with phrases like "asking for it" and other uncomfortable things.
  • Brief and quiet mentions of suicide due to trauma.


The Parents Guide items below may give away important plot points.

Sex & Nudity

  • Somewhat explicit talk of rape although this is never shown. Only mentioned.

Violence & Gore

  • A woman brandishes a scalpel attempting to carve into a man's chest. (She is unsuccessful)
  • A man suffocates a woman to death by holding a pillow to her head by his knee. She is screaming and clawing at him. The scene goes on for an extended amount of time and is very disturbing.
  • A woman's body is burned (nothing graphic is shown).
  • After the woman is burnt. You can see her hand floating on a river.
  • Scenes of strong sexual assault as Cassie is fingered against her will while pretending to be drunk. Not too graphic but extremely shocking and disturbing.
  • Cassie is suffocated to death with a pillow. This is very violent, intense, and disturbing as she screams and cries throughout the act of violence.

Alcohol, Drugs & Smoking

  • A woman slips roofies into mens' mouths before shots of vodka.

Frightening & Intense Scenes

  • The end scene in which Cassie and Al are on the bed can be frightening and stressful, especially to women and victims of sexual assault.
  • A scene where a guy kills a woman by placing a pillow on her face and pressing down with his knee. The scene lasts a long time, until she stops moving. You mostly just see the guy's face as he comes to the realization on what he's doing
  • After the woman is burnt. You can see her hand floating on a river.

See also

Taglines | Plot Summary | Synopsis | Plot Keywords

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