Story

St Trinian’s school for girls is notorious for turning out girls fit for a life of crime. New girl Annabelle Fritton (Talulah Riley) is shocked to discover that the school encourages ‘free expression’, which translates into blowing up buildings and making vodka to sell on the black market.

Her aunt Camilla Fritton (Rupert Everett), the headmistress, is surprised to meet up with an ex-lover who is now the new Education Minister, Geoffrey Thwaites (Colin Firth). Despite past relationships, Thwaites is determined to close down the school because of its unorthodox teaching methods. In addition, the school is in dire financial trouble.

The girls decide to take it upon themselves to raise the necessary funds by robbing the National Gallery of its famous ‘Girl with the Pearl Earring’ painting. This involves cheating their way to the final of ‘School Challenge’, which is to be held in the National Gallery.

Themes

Crime and drugs

Violence

Most of the violence in this movie is of a slapstick nature. For example:

  • A car is set on fire.
  • A student is dragged behind a tractor.
  • The girls cover Annabelle in paint and feathers.
  • A girl drops another girl over the stairs.
  • A girl is hanging on a cross in the RE room.
  • In a violent hockey match girls knock each other out with their sticks.
  • Girls throw Thwaites out of the window because they think he’s watching them in their underwear (they catch him with his pants down because he’s being bitten by ants).
  • Miss Fritton punches the bank manager.
  • Miss Fritton points a gun to her head, but it’s a cigarette lighter.
  • Annabelle punches Miss Fritton and knocks her out.
  • Thwaites kicks the dog out of the window because it keeps rubbing itself against his leg – the dog falls into a shredding machine.
  • Ten-year-old twins, experts in explosives, blow up a shed and a door to get into the gallery.

Content that may disturb children

Under 8

  • A skull is shown on the entrance post embedded with a carving knife.
  • The ‘emo’ girls look like vampires.
  • A girl is shown submerged in a fish tank and appears to be dead.
  • A girl suggests raising funds by kidnapping a rich man’s wife, cutting off her ear and then ‘keep cutting’.
  • Annabelle is woken in the middle of the night by a girl who placed a hand over her mouth. She thinks something awful is about to happen to her.

From 8-13

Some children in this age group could also be disturbed by some of the scenes described above.

Over 13

Children in this age group are unlikely to be disturbed by anything in this movie.

Sexual references

  • Annabelle phones her father who is occupied with several girls at the time.
  • Girls make ‘designer tampons’ – they don’t want to ‘only look beautiful on the outside’.
  • Looking at the painting of the ‘Girl with the Pearl Earring’, the girls say they can see why Colin Firth wanted to shag Scarlett Johansson (in reference to the movie of the same name).

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

  • The movie contains fequent scenes of drinking and smoking by girls and staff.
  • The girls make vodka to sell. One of them tests it and immediately passes out.
  • Thwaites starts to hallucinate after tasting a drink.
  • The school secretary supplies pills: ‘pink ones to pick you up, blue ones to bring you down’.
  • The girls give boys drugged tea to drink.

Nudity and sexual activity

  • Annabelle is filmed taking a shower. Her clothes are removed and she runs down the corridor in the nude, trying to cover herself. This is then shown on U-Tube.
  • Nude paintings hang on the wall.
  • During an art class, the girls paint a male nude.
  • Thwaites is caught with his pants down in a manner suggesting he’s being turned on by the girls in their underwear. (He is actually being bitten by ants.)
  • Thwaites goes to bed with Miss Fritton.

Product placement

None

Coarse language

This movie contains some mild coarse language.

Ideas to discuss with your children

St Trinian’s is a modern film adaptation of the comic books by Ronald Searle. It is likely to have some appeal to adolescent girls.

This film is a comedy about girls behaving badly. Any discussion you might have with your child could focus on the real-life consequences of the criminal behaviour and drug use seen in the movie.