Want more recommendations for your family?
Sign up for our weekly newsletter for entertainment inspiration
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Recognition of talent and excellence beyond outside appearances is a theme of the movie.
Violence & Scariness
Bloody prizefighting, desertion of child by parents, off-screen death of a child. Sports-related peril.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Implied sexual situation, shots of a brothel.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Colorful language and swearing when angry.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Social drinking, use of alcohol to forget problems. Lots of smoking.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that in Seabiscuit, Red's parents are forced by their reduced circumstances to give him to someone who owns a stable and who offers to put Red up as a jockey. His parents' unexpected abandonment scars him and might frighten younger viewers who, like Red, do not understand why his parents would leave him. There is an off-screen car crash which takes the life of Charles' young son, followed by shock and mourning. Also, Red tries to make some money by amateur boxing -- Red sustains significant injuries and the crowd watching the fight seems quite menacing. There is another sports-related injury which features Red resulting in a mangled leg. In addition, there are references to drinking during the Prohibition, and the radio announcer drinks quite a bit. The jockeys frequent a brothel in Mexico, where there is a scene of implied sexuality between Red and one of the ladies there. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This horse lovers' movie is far from perfect, but it offers good, solid, heartwarming entertainment. There is a reason that good movies about sports, almost always about an underdog who overcomes obstacles to succeed, appeal to us in such a visceral fashion. Americans fiercely love athletic heroes because we want to believe that the difference really is in something beyond the physical, that it exists in a big heart and scrappy soul. Seabiscuit brings every evocative notion of the underdog out of the stable in turn but manages to make a movie with familiar themes seem as handsome as a thoroughbred, albeit one that has trouble in the homestretch.
Director Gary Ross does a yeoman's job of trying to capture varied themes in one film. If anything, the themes are kept on such tight reins and are demonstrated to the audience so often that some will find their repetition heavy-handed. Some audiences might find the parts of the movie slow going and the solemn, documentary-styled narration of PBS's own David McCullough a bit on the heavy side. Finally, it is a minor quibble but Maguire sits too heavy in the saddle to be mistaken for a real jockey. Seabiscuit has all the tension, movement and excitement audiences expect from summer flicks, but it has the added bonus of strong acting, which in the summer is often replaced by computer animation or exploding cars.
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.
Suggest an Update
Our Editors Recommend
Movies That Promote Perseverance
Movies That Inspire Kids to Change the World
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate