Novel-inspired miniseries entertains, but is very violent.
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Labyrinth is partially set in France during the Crusades, and the re-enactment of a particularly gruesome massacre takes center stage during much of the story. People are hung, stabbed, strangled, and burned alive among other violent acts, and the images will be upsetting to sensitive viewers. The story is rooted in grail lore and the concept of the supernatural, and the Catholic Church -- through the extension of the Crusaders and a power-hungry modern-day character -- is cast in a very negative light as opposed to their more sympathetic victims. One bedroom scene shows a woman partially nude (her bare back and the sides of her breasts are visible) during sex, plus there are other instances of physical closeness and some occasional salty language in this captivating drama miniseries.
AY not really a MAYRA.
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What's the Story?
While on an archaeological dig in Carcassonne in Southern France, Alice Tanner (Vanessa Kirby) makes a discovery that thrusts her into an age-old war over ancient secrets about the Holy Grail. What's more, they forge a link between her and Alais Pelletier du Mas (Jessica Brown Findlay), a medieval woman sworn to protect that secret 800 years earlier, who just happens to be Alice's ancestor. As the story alternates between Alice's modern-day quest to make sense of her discovery and Alais's fight to survive the Crusade war that spells doom for her entire Cathar community, each faces dangerous foes who will stop at nothing to seize control of the secrets the women protect.
Is It Any Good?
Based on a popular novel, LABYRINTH nestles a scintillating mystery within the dramatic historical events of Carcassonne in 1209. It was a time when legions of Crusaders wiped out an entire population of Cathars for what the Catholic Church viewed as heretical beliefs. Conspiracy theorists and mystery buffs will enjoy the way this miniseries explores modern and ancient secret societies and grail lore and the events that unfold in Alice's and Alais's lives as they're swept away by their unwitting involvement.
The show does an excellent job of managing the dual storylines and creating unifying moments that keep viewers invested in both, and there's never a shortage of drama since both women are surrounded by evil and self-serving foes masquerading as allies. The copious violence requires a mature temperament, as does the suggestion that supernatural forces are at play. In other words, this is one for older teens and adults.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about media violence. Are any scenes in this story too violent? Does this kind of content have a purpose? Is it more acceptable if it's meant to reflect historical events, or does that not matter?
Many of the show's antagonists believe that altruistic outcome always justifies the means, even if people get hurt. Is there ever a scenario in which this could be true? Is the greater good ever more important that individual needs?
What role does gender play in this story? Does the fact that both heroines are women put them at an advantage or a disadvantage against their enemies? In general, are women awarded strong roles in TV and movies?
- On DVD or streaming: July 15, 2014
- Cast: Jessica Brown Findlay, John Hurt, Vanessa Kirby
- Director: Christopher Smith
- Studio: Lions Gate
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: History
- Run time: 176 minutes
- MPAA rating: NR
- Last updated: November 29, 2022
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