Reviews, Endorsements and Awards

Let's Get Real

Let's Get Real

Examines issues that lead to taunting and bullying, including racial differences, perceived sexual orientation, learning disabilities, religious differences, sexual harassment and others. Part of The Respect For All Project.

Reviews | Endorsements | Awards
What Teachers are Saying | What Children are Saying


“Let’s Get Real” is another powerful example of the value of kids teaching kids. The portent underlying this video is the contemplation of what happens after the taunting and name-calling have ended. How does it make someone feel, and how long do those feelings last? The video and guide take the subject of bullying by the throat and gives it a good, hard shake. The curriculum guide makes a coherent and valid connection between bullying and prejudice, and even offers statistics that illustrate the long term damage that adults suffer as a result of being bullied at an early age.
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Parents’ Choice Foundation

“Let’s Get Real. The format is simple, honest and oh-so effective. Numerous middle school students talk about bullying and harassment. The “n” word, tar baby, Jew, faggot, gay, homo, geek, dork, fatso, retarded, diaper head, big ass, and dog are just a few of the names the kids have been called. Colorful graphics, pulsating background music, and classroom and playground footage (one boy is intentionally knocked off his bike) accompany the head shots. Various bullies speak, too, including one who admits he “likes making people mad.” A few students tell how good they felt after they stood up to bullies who were harassing others. Comments expressing a desire to shoot the bullies or “kill myself” are frighteningly realistic and heartbreaking. This can’t-miss discussion starter is highly recommended for both school and public libraries. Includes guide.”
Sue-Ellen Beauregard, Booklist

“There are three groups in my school: ghetto, weird, and dorky,” says one of the interviewees in Oscar-winning filmmaker Debra Chasnoff’s Let’s Get Real, a remarkably candid documentary about sexual harassment, name-calling, and bullying that features no re-enactments or adults, just a wide variety of sound bites and interviews with real middle, junior, and high school students. The kids, to paraphrase The Who, aren’t exactly alright either, as the program includes comments from both bullies and victims on topics such as girl gossip, sexual harassment, racial tension (and insider vs. outsider racial terminology), and gay bashing. Some stories have a positive resolution; other interviewees are still struggling with painful treatment from their peers. Boasting good camerawork and interesting graphics, this compendium of honest adolescent talk will hopefully get teen viewers talking honestly too.”
Video Librarian

“Notable Children’s Video 2005. In a powerful yet balanced documentary, real middle school students who are dealing with issues such as name-calling, bullying, racial and religious differences, disabilities, and perceived sexual orientation, speak with candor about what is happening in their lives. A Columbine Award-winning, “in your face” video. Bonus features include an interview with the director.”
American Library Association

“The Let’s Get Real curriculum guide beautifully enhances the outstanding documentary film on name-calling, bullying and prejudice. The curriculum guide features up-to-date content, brain-compatible learning strategies, engaging lesson plans and an enormous array of resources. A relevant and exciting new tool for teaching tolerance.”
Jeff Sapp, curriculum specialist/writer, Teaching Tolerance

Let’s Get Real is simple, honest and oh so effective. …Frighteningly realistic and heartbreaking…This can’t-miss discussion starter is highly recommended for both school and public libraries.”
Booklist, American Library Association

“Anyone who has recently been inside a middle school will likely recognize his or her own school in this dead-on discussion of bullying and name-calling. …excellent, timely.”
School Library Journal

Let’s Get Real is an extremely well-made video…It goes beyond similar efforts, because it talks to youths who bully, drawing out their explanations and what it would take to make them stop.”
Youth Today, the newspaper on youth work


“I saw a sharp decrease in disciplinary referrals when we started using Let’s Get Real at Centennial Middle School. The film has a huge impact on students because it is middle schoolers talking to other middle schoolers. It’s great because it sparks strong reactions and thoughtful discussion. ”
— Josh Thayer, guidance counselor, Spokane Washington public schools

I have used “Let’s Get Real” for years in my graduate class for aspiring school and career counselors. I actually wore one out and purchased another!. While I have been on numerous task forces on developing anti-bullying policies in schools and school districts, the focus is almost exclusively on adult behaviors. These important efforts are a good start, but none have the impact of Let’s Get Real.
— Guy Alba, adjunct professor in the School of Professional Studies, Providence College

“A fantastic film and curriculum for engaging all members of a school’s community in thinking about the connections between bias and bullying” 
— Robert McGarry, Director of Education, Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network and National No-Name Calling Week

“Our adults are learning as much as our kids from your films! These terrific films tell it like it is in a straightforward emotionally honest narratives.  They work for all age groups as they simply and beautifully have multicultural kids speaking in their own voices. The viewer can’t help but be impacted and their judgements/stereotypes challenged as they make visual judgements of people and then have them refuted through the narratives. Spectacular, educational in and of themselves, they are also perfect discussion starters. ”
— Amy Cheney, Librarian/Advocate, Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center

Let’s Get Real is by far the best video I have ever seen about bullying. The articulate voices of the young people, the imaginative visuals, and the clear organization combine to make a teaching tool of great impact and vision.”
Stan Davis, bullying-prevention consultant,

“Bullying is most typically discussed in terms of physical violence, but the mental and emotional consequences can be far more pervasive and just as damaging. Let’s Get Real lets students know they are not alone, no matter if they are the victim, perpetrator or bystander. I highly recommend this timely and important film.”
Michael Faenza, MSSW, president and CEO, National Mental Health Association

Let’s Get Real lets students speak for themselves about the dangers they face in the classroom. This video should be required viewing for anyone interested in providing safe schools for young people.”
Jerry Newberry, M.Ed., executive director, National Education Association, Health Information Network

“Bullying and school violence are rooted in issues of ignorance, fear and prejudice. Let’s Get Real paints an incredible picture of how these issues play out every day.”
Annie Ellman, co-founder and executive director, Center for Anti-Violence Education

Let’s Get Real does an excellent job of making the connections between bullying based on race and bullying based on other issues. It encourages young people to find common ground and teaches them that what hurts one of us is hurtful to us all.”
Kelvin Datcher, former director, Teaching Tolerance

“Let’s Get Real is a moving and powerful film that shows why we must not accept bullying as a rite of passage for our youth. The film is an indispensable training resource for educators and concerned adults who want to stop the cycle of violence both inside and outside the classroom.”

Ellen Hofheimer Bettmann, author of Hate Hurts: How Children Learn and Unlearn Prejudice

“Let’s Get Real is unlike any other film I’ve seen on bullying. It presents an unflinching look at what has become an epidemic in our schools. These kids break your heart with their courage and honesty.”
Dr. Irvin Howard, past-president, California League of Middle Schools

Let’s Get Real is deeply insightful and incredibly moving. It should be used by colleges of education and teacher-training programs everywhere to prepare the next generation of teachers for the realities of middle school.”
Leslie Kapner, Teacher Education Program, UCLA Graduate School of Education

Let’s Get Real has been a very effective part of our district-wide initiative for all schools – elementary through high school – designed to prevent discrimination and protect student safety.”
Rob Kessler, Superintendent, San Ramon Valley Unified School District

“An aching, powerful statement of what it is to be young, intensely self-conscious and helpless.”
San Francisco Chronicle


Best Short Documentary, Columbine Award–Moondance International Film Festival

Finalist, Best Short Documentary–International Family Film Festival

Certificate of Merit, Rochester International Film Festival

2005 Notable Children’s Video, American Library Association

2005 Parents’ Choice Silver Award

What Teachers are Saying

“I am thrilled to be using the Let’s Get Real curriculum guide. It is super user friendly and so relevant to what students are dealing with and facing on a daily basis.

One of my favorite discussions is after I ask them “has anyone heard of ‘yo mama’ jokes”? and inevitably the whole class will put up their hands (grade 6-8). I then ask them if they have heard of any ‘yo papa’ jokes… they all usually look puzzled and reply with no.I then ask “how come?” and why do they think that there aren’t any jokes against people’s fathers? We then get to have a roaring discussion around misogyny and sexism and I watch as the pennies drop for the kids!
Mitchel du Plessis, Youth and Family Counsellor at L’Ecole Lansdowne Middle School, School District 61 in Victoria, BC. Canada

“I showed Let’s Get Real to my students, many of whom do not want to have these conversations and have a hard time sitting still. They were riveted. The discussion afterward was profound.”
Kim Carter, director, Monadnock Community Connections School, Keene New Hampshire

“What a great video! The kids loved it! They said they were finally given something on this topic that was real instead of scenarios.”
Susan Sarabasha, teacher, Boynton Middle School, Ithaca, New York

“Keep making these wonderful films. I believe Let’s Get Real will spark many interesting conversations about bullying with our students.”
Joan Martin, director, K-5, Crossroads School for Arts and Sciences, Santa Monica, California

Let’s Get Real is the best video about bullying that I’ve seen!”
Celia Arriaga, teacher, Seattle Schools

“I have viewed Let’s Get Real, and I really like it a lot. We are using it with our staff, students and parents as part of our bullying-prevention program at our school. This is an excellent resource.”
Jill Boyd, teacher, John Bullen Middle School, Kenosha, Wisconsin

“Thank you so much for highlighting the problem [of name-calling and bullying]. Maybe if we are more proactive, we can keep things like Columbine from happening again.”
Anne Cawood, parent, San Leandro, California

What Children are Saying

“I liked hearing interviews with real kids my age who were not actors. I was surprised that so many people have gone through what I went through.”
Middle School Student, Soquel, California

“After seeing Let’s Get Real , I think more about how people feel when they get bullied – I know now not to be mean to people because even if you’re joking it could hurt somebody’s feelings.”
Middle School Student, Soquel, California