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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Many positive messages here: The importance of loyalty and friendship; hard work leads to success; academically successful students make great athletes. Girls and boys play on the same hockey team, an admirable nod to equality in high school sports. There's even a minor plot about students wanting to change the name of the school's teams because it has a demeaning subtext. But there's also a streak of classism that fuels the film's plot; the established hockey players don't want the Ducks around because they look down on them for being from the "wrong side of the tracks."
Positive Role Models
The Ducks are tireless and band together when the chips are down. Some of them are defiant of authority, but peace eventually arrives on both sides. Also, a man gives up his dreams of professional hockey after a family emergency, valuing his child over his ambitions, and doesn't look back.
Violence & Scariness
There's bullying, but it's played for laughs; nevertheless, it's still mean-spirited. A fair amount of rough play at hockey games -- for example, a student flies through a glass wall and hits the bleachers, and students shove each other.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A boy hits on as many classmates as he can, regardless of whether they're attached or not. Teens kiss after a victorious game.
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Some swearing from teenagers, including "hell" and "stupid."
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Products & Purchases
REM, Pantera, the Anaheim Mighty Ducks are all mentioned. Logos for sports teams visible.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this comedy, the last of the popular Mighty Ducks franchise, is pretty predictable, but nevertheless offers basic-but-useful lessons about winning on and off the ice that tweens and teens may find relatable. There's little swearing and mild flirting, though the action on the rink is fairly rough-and-tumble. (Though it isn't pro-level bruising and bleeding.) And some bullying behavior is played for laughs, but the ones getting bullied ultimately triumph. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
The lessons served up in this reasonably entertaining comedy aren't new, especially in movies about team sports: Hard work matters. Overconfidence dooms. Winning isn't everything. Still, there's nothing wrong with being reminded of them, and in this respect, D3: THE MIGHTY DUCKS does its job fine and well. Cheesy as they may be, these lessons are actually useful; wise, too. Also, and this is important for a movie about hockey, the sport is palpably exciting when its on the screen.
It may have even been better if we'd seen more of it, because truth is, the rest is just OK. It's neither amazing nor boring, and it doesn't help that the story arc is predictable from the first slap of the puck: The Ducks ride high on their success. They fail and fall down a few notches. Just as it seems they can't get any lower, they're dealt a huge emotional blow. But an important figure from their recent past, and the requisite pep talk, hoists them back on their skates. D3: The Mighty Ducks doesn't have the thrill of the original, which tapped into that Bad News Bears magic of yesteryear. Still, it doesn't harm its legacy.
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.