A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
When Kara Zor-El crash-lands on Earth, everyone around her has ideas about how she should behave, what she should do, and what her future holds. Over the course of the story, she's pulled in several directions, but she learns to make her own decisions and to decide her own fate (that said, the movie doesn't actually spend much time on this character, so her decisions are made suddenly and rashly). There's also a sequence in which Kara is taken shopping and learns to love the rush of consumerism.
Positive Role Models
Most of the characters believe they're acting in everyone's best interests, but in reality, the grown-ups are trying to control teenage Kara's life. She eventually learns to stand up for herself and make her own decisions, choosing a life of responsibility and dedication to others.
Violence & Scariness
Lots of fighting amongst superheroes and super-villains, with heavy destruction and some blood. Viewers see guns and shooting, the breaking of a wrist, and a character stabbed through the chest. Perhaps most notably, a teenage girl witnesses her parents' death.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
In an early sequence, a silhouette of a naked woman is shown, and viewers later see the shadow of a naked woman. Kara (the future Supergirl) wears very skimpy outfits from time to time.
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Language includes a couple of uses of "ass" and "hell."
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Products & Purchases
Tie-in to vast quantities of related merchandise. In a "shopping" montage, Clark Kent buys Kara some clothes and she becomes euphoric with consumerism.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this sequel to Superman Batman: Public Enemies is part of a series of violent direct-to-DVD animated superhero movies aimed at teens, though this one is a little less packed with action and blood than usual. The story centers on a teen girl, Kara Zor-El, who must learn how to grow up, make her own decisions, and decide her own fate; she eventually decides to become Supergirl. Expect lots of fighting, with some guns, stabbing, and death and a little blood. Language is on the light side (just a couple of uses of "ass" and "hell"), and there are vague hints at female nudity, though nothing is shown. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
As directed by Lauren Montgomery, SUPERMAN/BATMAN: APOCALYPSE looks terrific, with detailed, fluid animation and striking characters. Unfortunately, there are just too many characters here, and with only 78 minutes to play around with, none of them end up having much depth. The experienced superheroes come across as bickering and single-minded, and the Darkseid subplot seems extraneous; it's just an excuse to add some fighting to what should be a coming-of-age story.
Meanwhile, Kara/Supergirl is pulled every which way and never comes to life on her own; she's a passive character. It's too bad, since she could be an interesting role model for teen girls. Perhaps worst of all is that the movie wastes time on a "shopping" montage, in which Clark Kent buys Kara some clothes and she becomes euphoric with consumerism. It's a disappointment.
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.