Parents' Guide to

Batman: The Killing Joke

By Renee Longstreet, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Intense, extremely violent, and sexual superhero tale.

Movie R 2016 76 minutes
Batman: The Killing Joke Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 17 parent reviews

age 15+

Not bad

This movie was pretty cool, and it brought up an interesting concept. So many people thought this movie was so bad, but I liked it. The concept the Joker brings up is that it only takes one bad day to drive one into madness, since that it exactly what happened to him. The only thing I don’t like is that Batgirl and the Joker don’t appear at the same time. When Batgirl goes away for the last time in the movie, the Joker appears soon after. There is a good 30 minutes in the movie before the Joker appears for the first time. Besides that, I really liked this animated installment to the DC Universe. The things to watch out for are comical action violence and some edgy sex, but not too bad. I think 17+ is an exaggeration for an age recommendation. I think this is nothing a 15-year-old can’t handle, and I think this could be rated PG-13. I wouldn’t call this one of the really bad R rated movies. There is hardly any language and drinking, drugs & smoking, and it is not as inappropriate as the review says it is, especially for an animated film.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
age 16+

Not too bad..

I'd say it's fine for a mature teenage rating. It has a few vulgar and offending words in this animated Batman DC Universe movie some children shouldn't be saying in public or to their family and friends. It involves... Nudity, Sexual things, disturbing scenes that can get stuck in your minds. I have seen one of the Joker in close up and it freaked me out, I recommend not showing this to children under 14-16. The comic book is good though, just bad for young children.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much swearing

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (17 ):
Kids say (40 ):

An overlong forced preface, extreme bloodthirsty sequences, as well a curious reliance on nakedness and the sexualizing of its iconic superheroes set this Batman adventure apart from the familiar. Adapted from an already dark but highly thought-of graphic novel also called Batman: The Killing Joke, the film takes some of what were thought to be mildly offensive themes and doubles down. Batgirl becomes a "flattered" sexual victim, the emotional casualty of a one-night stand with her mentor, and a martyr all in the first 20 minutes. The movie fares much better when the Joker's story amps up. The Joker's origin story, detailing the source of his insanity, comes directly from the novel and is well done. Performances are uniformly excellent; animation is first-rate. A final confrontation between Batman and the Joker will both surprise and perplex. So it's a mixed bag. With its dark underbelly and philosophical complexity, as well as its questionable sexual content, it's definitely for adults, both visually and thematically.

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