Killing Bono (2011) - Movie Review for Parents and Teachers | Student Handouts
Welcome to Student! 100% free teaching materials for students in kindergarten through high school--lesson plans, worksheets, PowerPoints, outlines, interactive games, puzzles, and so much more!
Killing Bono (2011) > Film Guides > Popular Film Guides
Killing Bono (2011) Movie Guide and Review Length: 114 minutes (1 hour, 54 minutes)

Age Appropriateness Rating: Killing Bono is rated "R" in the United States. This movie includes foul language and brief nudity, as well as sexual references, hints of violence, and brief recreational drug use. However, nothing about "sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll" is glamorized in this film. If anything, Killing Bono makes the pursuit of rock star status seem pretty lame. This movie is inappropriate for classroom viewing because of its rating and content, but most parents of high schoolers won't have a problem with it.

Creators and Stars: Aidan McArdle, Ben Barnes, Ben Bond, David Fennelly, David Tudor, Diarmuid Noyes, Dick Clement, Hugh O'Conor, Ian La Frenais, Joni Kamen, Justine Waddell, Krysten Ritter, Lisa McAllister, Luke Treadaway, Mark Griffin, Martin McCann, Neil McCormick, Nick Hamm, Pete Postlethwaite, Peter Serafinowicz, Ralph Brown, Robert Sheehan, Sam Corry, Sean Doyle, Simon Maxwell, Slinky Winfield, Thomas Kelly

Accuracy: Killing Bono is based on Neil McCormick's memoir, Killing Bono: I Was Bono's Doppelganger, for which Bono himself wrote the forward. The gist of the story is that Neil McCormick (played by Ben Barnes, Prince Caspian in the Narnia film series) went to school with Bono and the other members of U2. Neil dreamt of becoming a famous musician, as well. His story is one of unrealistic dreams, missed opportunities, and cringe-worthy bad decisions.
  Killing Bono movie promo poster with Ben Barnes   Ben Barnes as Neil McCormick in Killing Bono   Martin McCann as Bono in Killing Bono   Robert Sheehan as Ivan McCormick in Killing Bono   Pete Postlethwaite as Karl in Killing Bono  
  Killing Bono Movie Promotional Poster   Ben Barnes as Neil McCormick   Martin McCann as Bono   Robert Sheehan as Ivan McCormick   Pete Postlethwaite as Karl  
  Killing Bono (2011)   Ben Barnes in Killing Bono (2011)   Killing Bono Party Scene   Robert Sheehan and Ben Barnes in Killing Bono   Ben Barnes and Krysten Ritter in Killing Bono  
  Killing Bono   Robert Sheehan as Ivan McCormick in Killing Bono (2011)   Ben Barnes as Neil McCormick in Killing Bono   Killing Bono   Killing Bono  
  Killing Bono Movie Scene   Killing Bono Backstage Scene   Martin McCann and Robert Sheehan in Killing Bono (2011)   Killing Bono Movie Still (2011)   Killing Bono Trunk Scene  
Review: This movie is about U2, but you don't have to like U2 to enjoy it. This film is about trying to become a rock star, but you don't need to dream of becoming a rock star to enjoy it. This film is about allowing pettiness, envy, and your ego stand in the way of achieving success and seizing opportunities. If you (or your teenager) has this problem, then this is the perfect pick for movie night.

Like a lot of Irish films, Killing Bono manages to stay down-to-earth and humorous no matter how dark the story gets at times. This is done to good effect in this movie, allowing the audience to relate to the predicaments in which Neil finds himself, and even empathize with him somewhat, while simultaneously wanting to smack him for being such a jerk to himself and to the rest of his band (particularly his brother Ivan, played by Robert Sheehan).

A fun perk: This movie's wardrobe department does a terrific job of recreating the fashions of the early 1980s (for me, it was almost embarrassing to watch). If you lived through the era, be prepared to have your kids laugh at clothing you may once have worn.

Miscellaneous: Killing Bono makes for an interesting post-viewing discussion. (1) Have you ever not done something that could benefit you, simply because of the people that were doing it? (2) Name three things that Neil could (and should) have done differently. (3) Does watching others achieve success in your own field make your strive for success less difficult or more difficult? Click here to enlarge the film poster.
Free K-12 Education Printables and More
The Affair of the Necklace (2001) Movie Review
DBQ Map Quiz of the Assyrian, Chaldean, and Persian Empires, 1100-500 B.C.E.
The Dark Ages (2007) Documentary Review and Guide for History Teachers
Defeat of Cleopatra and Marc Antony at the Battle of Actium (31 B.C.E.) Map Quiz
Teenage Paparazzo (2010)
Killing Bono Movie Review Publication Date for Citation Purposes: June 9, 2012