All parent member reviews for Matilda

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
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  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parents say

(out of 30 reviews)
AGE
9
QUALITY
 
Review this title!
Parent Written byTwin_mom February 5, 2010
AGE
7
QUALITY
 
We love many of Roald Dahl's stories and some of the movie adaptations, but both of my children and I hated it and turned it off after about 45 minutes. (Later I watched the end by myself.) My 7-year-olds said they were scared by the hateful parents and violent teacher, even though they realized that it was all exaggerated and supposed to be humorous They also disliked the bleakness of the surroundings. The movie is so dark and depressing in the depiction of the adults who are all either clueless, indifferent or outright abusive that the positive message about a child's self-determination gets lost. Too much focus is on the violence and abuse perpetrated by adults who are supposed to love and protect Matilda. Also, it begs the question: How would Matilda fare without her exceptional powers and abilities? Where does it leave a regular kid in a terrible situation? Hopeless.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent of a 7 year old Written bySealrockpoet October 21, 2010
AGE
9
QUALITY
 

Over the top violence could reinforce child's dislike of school authority

This movie is over the top, when it comes to violence. Too much, too extreme, and each incident of violence goes on and on. True, it's fantasy, and true, it's cartoon-like, but does this mean that cartoon violence is okay? The heroine is cute, and winsome, and brave ... but her solutions to the problems aren't realistic. Also, if a young viewer already has issues with school and/or authority, this film would reinforce a dislike of both school AND authority.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written bywonder dove May 24, 2012
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

Beautifully crafted film!

One of my all-time favorite movies - even as an adult! This film is amazing, which is why it may not be suitable to some families. It's very magical and fun with a very good message and positive role models! Matilda grows up in a bad environment, with her mother obsessed with her own self image and her father dealing in illegal activities (taking advantage of others and selling fake car parts) and a very annoying brother who bullies her - she takes on a natural magical ability that helps her through it. It has lots of kiddy scares, some very mean characters (which is why some people are put off by it (hey, it's a movie! and it's supposed to have a villain..or two!) Matilda's character is very gentle, sweet and caring...as is her teacher who finally adopts her from her terrible family. A great ending will have you smiling.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 6 and 8 year old Written byMI Mom of 2 February 5, 2011
AGE
12
QUALITY
 
Although my children (ages 7 &; 9) found parts funny, my husband and I found the entire movie dreadful. First off, it is really dark - the parents are constantly calling the children terrible names and drinking beer, watching tv and glorifying that lifestyle. I understand that it is funny in a dark way, but considering this is a movie "for children" it is very inappropriate. Also, if you have adoptive children - the end is just shocking. The first thing out of my daughter's mouth was "why is her parents giving her away? They don't like her?" Being an adoptive family, I felt the message they send on how the parents just shrug their shoulders and give their child away is very dark and sad. And we haven't even tapped into the principal of the school who is physically violent with the children - which is intended to be laughable but just came off as making you uncomfortable to watch it. I give this movie a big fat ZERO. Read the book instead and use your own imagination because this is just not worth it and most of the main characters are terrible role models.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Safety and privacy concerns
Adult Written bytriplets April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Disturbing Meanness

Frequently reassuring my nearly 10 year old kids that parents and principals would never act so meanly to kids, this movie was darker than I had imagined it would be. I wish I would have previewed it in its entirety first. Leather whips, children hurled across schoolyards, a closet full of knives that children are forced into, and children having to hide in fear while no adult seems to care enough to protect them seems over the top. Although Matilda perseveres in the end, it is through magical powers that are used to frighten mean adults into submission. Other adults in the story could not stand up to bullying adults, or didn't care enough to pay attention... and Matilda used her powers to get even, to humiliate, and bully back. The parents give Matilda up for adoption at the end, as they are being sought by police for theft. The humor of just rewards was there, but overshadowed, I felt by the darkness of the movie.
Parent of a 1 and 6 year old Written bybrettyd December 30, 2012
AGE
5
QUALITY
 

nice film, sweet

a cute film, a feel good film, but unfortunately there were a few tiny errors, booze, and a couple of swear words, most of the violence is comical though, the pretence of a ghost through here telekinetic powers, but other than that this is a fine film for children, teens and adults alike, my boy saw this film when he was 5 and does enjoy it, but now hes 6 its all about action now
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Parent Written byp1xelpush3r June 7, 2012
AGE
5
QUALITY
 

Surreal Work of Art

What a great, dark, insightful, tender, adventurous movie. It is such a fun ride, and depending on the kid, they will be into it and talking about it for days. My 4 year old watched it before I checked it out on here, and I was apprehensive, but she understood the fairytale nature and made associations with the feelings and frustrations of the characters. It's very Tim Burton-esque in that sense and even though it can be dark, the surrealism allows some kids to understand the satire. All the characters and actors have depth and are superbly executed. The movie is not for everyone, but my little one thoroughly enjoyed it.
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written bygreenafy June 1, 2011
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Loved this movie as a kid, still do now

I remember watching this movie when I was in first grade and I remember loving it, as I still do now. As a kid, I never followed the bad examples of this movie as other people say there are in it (ex. too much violence, drinking, lying and cheating, etc). It was a cute and inspiring film and I was never scared by it at all. Now that I'm older, I do notice a lot of those things in Matilda that parents notice when they watch it, but it's not an issue because they're not influenced by it. I think all kids should watch it!
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 2 and 5 year old Written byUrania8 April 26, 2010
AGE
5
QUALITY
 

Scary adults rein this cute flick

It's a cute movie and Dahl is always awesome but this was just too scary and intense for our 5 (almost 6 year old). Allot of shouting and grown ups abusing children. Even though we are quite liberal with what we let her watch (Nightmare Before Christmas) she asked us to turn it off.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Educator and Parent Written bycamcaminator December 24, 2013
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

dark and scary

This movie really scared my 8 year old daughter. She asked me to turn it off and then cried and said she was afraid she would have nightmares about the horrible principal. The language was really unacceptable as well. I wish we had not ever watched it.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Parent Written bynmheller November 6, 2013
AGE
8
QUALITY
 
Adult Written bySourGalaxy October 27, 2013
AGE
7
QUALITY
 

Great Family Film

A great classic based on the book by Roald Dahl, this movie is about a little girl with a special gift. She can move objects by themselves at will and can make miracles happen. However, her family is very neglecting and mean to her, and they are also quite mean to her. The principle at her school is Ms. Trunchbull, who is possibly the meanest principle in cinema history. I don't want to spoil the movie further so I'll talk about the content. The film is more violent than anything else. Children are abused/yelled at. Ms. Trunchbull deals out frightening punishments to students, one of them being "The Chokey" where a student stands in a closet structure with a bed of nails in it(no one gets harmed). Ms. Trunchbull also physically abuses kids by grabbing them by their hair or throwing them out a window. Basically, the violence is abusive and yelling type violence. Matilda's parents are shown drinking beer in the film. Matilda's brother also tosses a beer to his dad. There is also some mild language. There are a couple uses of "Oh my God" or similar sayings, both "Hell" and "Piss" are used once. There is zero innuendo or sexy stuff from what I can remember. Overall a great film for everybody, but really young kids should watch with a parent because it may or may not frighten them.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Educator and Parent Written byEFR April 19, 2013
AGE
18
QUALITY
 

My daughter was very upset by this

This movie is about a violent, abusive school principal and a magical child. The principal calls the children "vomit" and other extreme statements. She puts children into a cell with nails in the walls and broken glass on the floor. In the end she tries to kill the magical child and her teacher. Awful from start to finish.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Parent of a 2 and 4 year old Written bycreyes8519 March 5, 2013
AGE
4
QUALITY
 

Depends on the child, but overall good movie, sends a heartwarming message.

I saw this movie as a child and was excited for my 4 year old to see the movie for the first time. When I was a child, I interpreted the film as, "If you read books and are studious, you will have superpowers". Because of this film I loved to read. My daughter loved it. It does have some disturbing images, the principal is sadistic and abuses the children in the school. There was only one child in the movie who I would consider a bully and that is the brother of Matilda, who throws things at his sister and calls her a "dip-face". My daughter understands that this behavior is unacceptable. There was one thing that bothered me and it was the relationship between Matilda and her parents. While her parents were absolutely horrible to her and didn't treat her like their own, I still don't find her behavior towards her parents acceptable.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Parent of a 9 year old Written byfruityputooty February 11, 2013
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

typical hollywood extreme

This is an awful movie. The fantasy is outrageously abusive. Although it is meant to be silly and unbelieveable, it is much too nefarious and very scary for children. This may be an example to compare with Charles Dickens in an English class, but it is not a triumphant movie to help children deal with challenges in life.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written bysomeonewhoisconfused April 19, 2012
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

Question

OK,so Miss Honey is very sensitive about violence,yet thinks Matilda should be put with the older kids,even though she may get bullied by them?I don't get that at all.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent Written byVivian1111 March 17, 2012
AGE
18
QUALITY
 

Parents be warned.

I was appauled by this movie and strongly urge parents to pick another option. Other comments below capture the issues with the movie but I felt compelled (for the first time in my life) to add my warning to unsuspecting parents. Put simply, this movie has no redeeming features and every single message in the movie is contrary to what you would want your kids to be exposed to. Shame on you Danny Devito
Parent Written bysparky_2012 March 8, 2012
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

Don't bother watching.

This is an awful movie! My child watched this movie twice and I finally said No to this movie. I believe the book is good.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Parent Written byShakygirl January 27, 2012
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Utterly brilliant!

A great telling of Roald Dahl's story. Typically dark and grotesque, superbly acted, with a good pace. Nothing terrifying for children, the concepts of the chokey are such that my very easily scared daughter didn't hide behind the sofa once. Adults will find it darker than kids.
Adult Written byPatence January 14, 2012
AGE
9
QUALITY
 

Love this movie !

I think this is a movie all kids should watch the violence is Actually Cartoonish or i can say animated as it happens in animated movies this movie is really good if you are a positive thinker no movie is better than this for your children and even no movie is worse for your children is you are a negative thinker so all those who think this movie is too violent then it is their brain's fault that they took it in such a negative way .
What other families should know
Great messages

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