A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
As a slapstick farce of a horror movie, there isn't much in the way of positive messages.
Positive Role Models
While an argument could be made that Gizmo learns to stand up for himself, it would be a flimsy argument, as so much of the action is cartoonish and ridiculous.
Violence & Scariness
While there's mostly cartoonish violence, and a lot of it, there are some moments in the film that might be scary for younger viewers. A gremlin is shot in the head by another gremlin. A gremlin is killed when a man shoves him into a paper shredder, resulting in thick green goo spraying all over the man's suit.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A woman makes sexual advances on a man at dinner by rubbing her foot against his groin area. A woman asks if a man is hiding pornography in a drawer in his cubicle.
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Products & Purchases
Gremlins build a gremlin out of Legos. A can of Jolt Cola is prominently displayed. Scenes in bars feature neon signs advertising Coors Light and Busch beer.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
An elderly Asian man smokes from a long pipe. The boss of one of the main characters is frequently seen smoking or lighting up a cigarette. Characters drink beer and cocktails at dinner. Dozens of gremlins take over a bar and are shown drinking and smoking. A chef on a television program drinks from a bottle of sherry.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Gremlins 2: The New Batch is the 1990 sequel to the hit '80s movie. It's more entertaining than one might expect, but much of that entertainment comes from cartoonish violence in the form of gremlins spending the last hour of this 90-minute movie running amok in a Manhattan high rise similar to Trump Tower. While not as gory as other horror movies, some of the gremlin deaths -- for instance, a gremlin getting killed via a paper shredder -- might be a bit much for younger viewers. Some of the satire of 1980s-style greed will also go over younger viewers' heads, as well as references to Ted Turner's attempts at colorizing classic black and white films in the late 1980s. There's mild profanity and a few mild sexual references. A troubling aspect worth mentioning is the stereotypical portrayal of an Asian character who does nothing but speak in broken English while taking nonstop photographs with his camera. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
GREMLINS 2: THE NEW BATCH is surprisingly fun. While the first 30 minutes throws together just enough of a storyline to lead to the remaining hour of the movie (which is basically little more than sequence after sequence after sequence of gremlins getting into trouble in a Manhattan high-rise), this sequel mines a steady stream of laughs out of cartoonish violence and references to dozens of other movies.
It's a thin premise, but as the filmmakers knew, audiences don't watch sequels to Gremlins for deep character interaction -- they watch Gremlins sequels to watch gremlins going crazy destroying things. While there's lots of slapstick comedy, the movie also contains more sophisticated pop culture references and satire at the expense of moguls like Donald Trump and Ted Turner. It's a ludicrous, over-the-top kind of movie, and with the right expectations, it's the kind of movie that's enjoyable for its own sake.
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.
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