Parents' Guide to

The Monkey King

By Jennifer Green, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Peril, fantasy violence, insults in Chinese tale adaptation.

Movie PG 2023 96 minutes
The Monkey King movie poster: a girl and a monkey

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 16+

Terrible theme for kids

I think this film isn't suitable for kids, it desensitised the reality of heaven and hell. The language that is used and the underlying story isn't appropriate. I found it quite disturbing with demons and fighting and immortality. If you are a Christian family do not go near this film at all. I regret putting it on.
age 12+

I don't think it is good for the younger kids.

This show is basically disrespectful of religion. There is literally a scene where the monkey goes into Hell to erase his name on a list to become immortal, and also another where he says he is greater than heaven. Another problem is weird jokes, and inappropriate language. There is a scene where The Dragon King tampers with some peaches, and a few minutes later he eats them and begins to act like someone who took drugs, saying creepy and weird things, and multiple scenes where they use derogatory and offensive words. The last problem is that the main character is horrifically overpowered, and acts narcissistic. How does someone take on an entire demon without training whatsoever, and then somehow win a battle with a 120 meters tall dragon without breaking a sweat? I expected an epic battle, not simply the dragon losing to a few strikes of the monkey's stick. Also, the baby monkey looks cute at first, but he is actually seen going to a mother monkey, throwing the other child away and then trying to take place as the child, only for the mother to scream at him and shoo him away.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (11 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Buckle your seatbelt and be prepared for nonstop action in this telling of the legendary tale, which looks spectacular but doesn't get to the fable's real messages until late in the game. Without the Buddha's introductory revelations about The Monkey King, this film's titular character could seem unredeemable (besides his self-aggrandizing humor) for a chunk of the action. Sure, he was ostracized as a child and never learned to love or be loved. We get it. But it takes an hour-plus of fast-paced, far-fetched brawls before his young, female sidekick Lin shows him what he's been missing -- and sees the lonely creature inside him as well. In that sense, the film aims squarely at a very young audience, for whom the action will be entertaining enough. Older viewers can appreciate the film's textured look, which was meant to mimic Chinese brush painting.

Movie Details

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