A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Movie explores themes and conflicts such as vengeance, redemption, if evil is an inherent trait to humanity. Also: fate vs. free will.
Positive Role Models
In each of these animated shorts, there are no real positive role models. The "heroes" are conflicted as they walk the line between good and evil, free will versus fate.
Violence & Scariness
Cartoon violence in each of these animated shorts. Fighting with assorted weapons. While holding him prisoner, Joker beats Robin repeatedly with a cane. Decapitated bodies. People burned alive. Sniper killing. Dead bodies. Stabbing in the eye. Character cut in half; blood. In the short animated features included in the DVD: war and sci-fi violence. Sword fight. Attempted suicide by gun.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some talk of sex, sexual references.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
"A--hole," "s--t," "damn," "goddamn," "crap," "ass," "piss."
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Products & Purchases
Animated shorts centered on characters from the DC Comics universe.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
In the animated shorts included with the title feature: marijuana smoking, cigarette smoking, binge drinking in a bar, wine drinking at a party.
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 Batman: Death in the Family is a 2020 animated feature in which a vengeance-obsessed Robin goes rogue and tries to stop Joker and Batman must try to save the young protegé. On DVD and Blu-Ray, this is an interactive movie in which the viewer gets to decide the fates of Batman and Robin, and each decision leads to a further exploration of the themes of fate versus free will, redemption, vengeance, and the nature of evil. Expect lots of cartoon violence, including decapitations, people burned alive, building explosions, battles with assorted weaponry, a beating with a cane, and a stabbing in the eye. In addition to the title feature, this includes four short animated features starring other characters from the DC Universe, including Sgt. Rock, Adam Strange, The Phantom Stranger, and Death. In these features, expect more cartoon violence, including an attempted suicide by gun, similar themes to the title program, as well as binge drinking, marijuana and cigarette smoking, Profanity throughout, including "a--hole," "s--t," "damn," "goddamn," "crap," "ass," and "piss." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Aside from the interactive features, Batman: Death in the Family is standard noir fare for our modern-day Caped Crusader and Boy Wonder. The themes are familiar and should be easily recognized by anyone who hangs out in the DC Universe: the nature of good and evil, the blurred lines between the two, vengeance, redemption, how vigilante justice is no justice at all, fate versus free will, and so on. These are the recurring themes, and the interactive aspects to this movie simply amplify them, but don't really bring anything new to the table. It's enjoyable enough, but feels padded.
Speaking of padded, this also includes four short animated features from other characters in the DC Universe: Sgt. Rock, Adam Strange, The Phantom Stranger, and Death. These explore similar themes as the title story, only with more zombies, aliens, Manson-esque death cults, and tortured artist angst. These are not interactive, and vary in quality in terms of storytelling originality. But if anything connects them all, it's the blurred lines between good and evil that coexist within each of these heroes and antiheroes. After decades of a Batman franchise rebooted to convey just that, to say nothing of all the line-blurring we've witnessed in The Sopranos, The Wire, and Breaking Bad, etc., one can't be faulted for shouting, "OK, I get it!" after yet another exploration of this theme on the streets of Gotham. Still, fans will find lots to take in and talk about.
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.