Parents' Guide to

Waterworld

By Charles Cassady Jr., Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Seagoing sci-fi swashbuckler fun despite bad reputation.

Movie PG-13 1995 112 minutes
Waterworld Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 14+

Don't listen to the bad reputation. It's actually really good!

Waterworld is an amazingly entertaining film, with epic and stunning action sequences. Waterworld stars Kevin Costner, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Tina Majorino, and Dennis Hopper. They all act amazingly in this film. I also love the astonishing sets they built for the film like, the Atoll. Waterworld is an awesome and breathtaking film. Violence 3/5- Lots of explosions, gun-play, punching, kicking, knives, and people and boats are shot with spears. The Deacon loses his eye in a huge explosion (we only see the bloody eye socket.) The Mariner almost drowns in human sludge. Language 3/5- frequent use of mild profanity one F-bomb. Sexy Stuff 2/5- Female rear nudity. Drinking Drugs and Smoking 2/5- The Smokers smoke a lot. Overall the film would probably be okay for 14+.
age 13+

Big scope with some silliness

Oh Kevin Costner and an astronomical budget. A pairing that would become synonymous with underperformance. I have seen my fair share of terrible films and although this film is a lot, it has gumption and Dennis Hopper swings for the fences (per the usual). There are a few misses, mostly in character attributes and names...Dryland? Really? Come on...the film feels a bit silly, but the ideas resonate because I have definitely been a fan of the Universal Studios show (longest running) and twenty years later it still does not disappoint.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (3 ):
Kids say (5 ):

Despite its bad rap, WATERWORLD does offer solid entertainment (and it did find minor box-office success). It's got fun swashbuckling and cool low-tech nautical gadgets and imaginative production design that is indeed otherworldly. Dennis Hopper does an amusingly comic-scary villain -- even if his bloody eye socket is one of several gross-out moments for kid and adult viewers. Only as it slackens toward the end (and piles on the bad-science snafus) does the movie begin to feel as ponderous and self-absorbed as critics complained. It helps if one hasn't recently seen Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, which was a too-obvious inspiration.

Like the 1963 Cleopatra, this ecologically-tacking sci-fi flick become a symbol of Tinseltown waste and epic ego, as the original director left the production and the budget ballooned way over estimates. Thanks to all the gossip the film was labeled a bomb by many before it had even opened.

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