A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Kids will learn the concept that where there is evil, "good" will rise up to face it and (hopefully) defeat it. Roxanne also asserts that it's not how someone looks that matters but the content of their character and their actions.
The movie's primary message is that we all have a choice about how we act, and it is our actions, not our past, that determine what kind of person we are. The "duality of man" is also a major theme, as Megamind is both a hero and a villain throughout the film. The idea that good needs evil and vice versa is a sophisticated philosophical one, but it's handled in a child-friendly way throughout the movie.
Positive Role Models
Roxanne is a positive role model -- she's brave, kind, funny, and willing to see Megamind's potential and not just all the awful things he's done in the past. (That said, he is a villain ...)
Violence & Scariness
Cartoonish violence including explosions, the apparent death of a superhero, a glimpse of a skeleton, and several aerial battles.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Roxanne flirts with Metro Man and later both Megamind and his alter ego. They hold hands and hug, he carries her, and they eventually kiss. Before they get to know each other, Megamind calls Roxanne a "temptress."
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Some use of rude words/insults like "butt," "loser," and the like, plus "oh God" (as an exclamation).
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Products & Purchases
Nothing notable in the movie, but there are off-screen tie-ins to fast food, candy, and other products.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this animated comedy flips the typical superhero formula on its head by focusing on supervillain Megamind (voiced by Will Ferrell), who doesn't quite know what to do with himself after the fall of his arch-rival supehero (Brad Pitt). Overall, the movie is age-appropriate for young grade-schoolers and up. There's one scene in which a character's supposed skeleton is shown and his death alleged, but other than that, the violence is all quite cartoonish and not particularly realistic or scary, and the 3-D isn't as intense as it is in some other animated movies. The language is also quite tame ("butt" and that sort of thing), but there's some romantic tension, and a couple holds hands, flirts, and eventually kisses. Most little kids won't understand the movie's general theme that good can't exist without evil and vice versa, but it's a fascinating concept to introduce to older children. Special note: Parents of younger kids should know that characters in the movie state that the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny don't exist. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Ferrell is a gifted comedian, and his voice acting is fabulous. His hilariously affected pronunciations -- he calls Metro City "MeTROcity," as if it rhymes with "Monstrosity," and says melancholy as "meLANcholy" -- and his earnest banter with Fey's Roxanne prove early on that he's a hero trapped in a villain's body. Pitt, meanwhile, doesn't have much to do except convince viewers that his voice belongs to the kind of shiny superhero who can juggle smiling babies and reduce the women in town to tears with the merest glimpse of his dimpled grin. Not a hard job to do -- when you're Brad Pitt! Cross and Hill are amusing as sidekick and nemesis, respectively, but the all-star cast can't make up for the fact that the story falls a bit flat after Metro Man is defeated. Part of it is the boredom that Megamind feels, but another part is just slow -- even if there are plenty of laughs.
The music, for example, is a cliched playlist of rock favorites like Back in Black, Highway to Hell, and Welcome to the Jungle. All are great classics, but haven't we already heard them in plenty of other movies? Considering how original the Pharrell WIlliams soundtrack was on the similarly themed Despicable Me, these predictable (albeit instantly recognizable) choices seemed lazily selected. And that's the movie's overall problem: It's fun and funny, but it's not remarkable. It's not the kind of animated movie that will inspire Halloween costumes or repeat viewings on the family room DVD player.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.