A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Through teamwork, determination, and intelligence you can survive the most dangerous situations. It's important to learn and change.
Positive Role Models
The two children, Lex and Tim, are smart and brave; the adults protect them and one another at every turn. Flawed characters seem to learn from their mistakes.
Female characters Dr. Ellie and Lex are portrayed as smart, strong, and practical problem solvers. B.D. Wong and Samuel L. Jackson play supporting characters with few scenes, though Jackson gets to deliver one of the most iconic lines in the film ("Hold on to your butts"). The lead characters are all White. Not much body diversity; Wayne Knight's character, who is larger than the others, is used as comic relief.
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Violence & Scariness
People and animals are eaten and attacked by realistic dinos. Multiple deaths. Not too much blood and gore, but the scare factor is high, and one gruesome scene involves a severed arm. Jump-scares. Scenes of the kids being hunted by dinosaurs are particularly intense. Chases, crashes, constant peril.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Women in bikinis are seen on a computer screen. Flirtation between adults.
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Infrequent swearing includes "s--t" (one related to dinosaur feces), "hell," "crap," "damn," "son of a bitch," "goddamn," "stupid," "butts," and "oh my God." Some potty humor.
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Products & Purchases
A few brands are seen -- Barbasol, Ford, Apple, Nike, Reese's. The Jurassic Park franchise includes video games, toys, and lots of other merchandise.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A character smokes cigarettes regularly. Adults drink in a few scenes.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Jurassic Park is a landmark sci-fi adventure film by Steven Spielberg, based on the novel by Michael Crichton, that spawned a franchise including several sequels and videogames. Kids will see people and animals being hunted and eaten by realistic-looking dinosaurs. While there's little blood and gore (although one scene gruesomely involves a severed arm), there's tons of suspense, many "jump-scare" scenes, and some chases/crashes. Expect a bit of swearing (including a few instances of "s--t"). Adults smoke and drink. The film shows how teamwork, determination, and intelligence can help you survive the most dangerous situations. Female characters are shown as strong and capable problem-solvers, but all of the lead characters are White and the only one who isn't thin is used as comic relief. Younger tweens may be able to handle the fright factor with an adult at hand, but sensitive children should wait a bit longer. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This film boasts Academy Award-winning special effects, lots of frightful moments, and some good laughs. In Jurassic Park, director Steven Spielberg and his effects team deliver stunningly realistic dinosaurs. The movie also has a superb soundscape; hear it with a top-notch sound system to get all the thrills. Of course, actually seeing the monster isn't always the best thing. In Jaws, Spielberg's early masterpiece, viewers didn't get to see the shark until well into the movie -- and the suspense was excruciating. That kind of storytelling elegance is missing here. And for all of its technical achievements, Spielberg occasionally sacrifices three-dimensional characters and real human drama for the thrill of the effects.
Jurassic Park's terrifying realism is something to take seriously. Sensitive younger kids may want to avoid this one, and parents may want to watch ahead of time and gauge their children's likely response. It's worth noting that, amid all the thrills, the movie has some very funny moments, including a scene where a T. Rex runs toward a vehicle and you can read: "Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear" in a side mirror. It's just one of many iconic moments that ensured this film's place in cinema history.
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.