Parents' Guide to

Monty Python's The Meaning of Life

By Afsheen Nomai, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Edgy Python schtick better for older viewers.

Movie R 1983 108 minutes
Monty Python's The Meaning of Life Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 16+

Based on 9 parent reviews

age 15+

A fair warning to parents viewing this movie with young children.

This movie is suitable for viewers over the age of 15. If a mature child of at least 13 and above is watching, it is okay. I would not recommend that any immature child, scared of gore/blood, frightened easily, or innocent watch this. I was particularly appalled at the ending scene when I watched this movie. This depicts female dancers with transparent top pieces exposing their chests. The only good scene in this movie is the "Galaxy Song", although it, unfortunately, features an animated female being impregnated and giving birth. If you would like to view this, please do so at your own risk. Adult male viewers would be enticed to watch this sort of thing. I, personally, would be extremely worried if this was your child's favorite Monty Python movie, let alone even liking the sort of movie. DO NOT, and I mean quite so, ever show this to your child. It will be a terrible bonding exercise.
age 14+

Classic comedy

Classic Python comedy. Silly, irreverent and lots of fun.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (9 ):
Kids say (19 ):

This silly satire is certainly not among the favorites of Python fans ("The Life of Brian" and "The Holy Grail" are the undisputed Python classics). But The Meaning of Life still remains pure Python, replete with their disdain for organized religion and constant mocking of what they must surely see as hypocritical human morals. Python is more agreeable to the tireless social critic with a penchant for irreverent British humor. Unlike many contemporary British comedies popular in the U.S. (such as "The Office" or the hopelessly postmodern "Spaced"), Python mixes dire social critique amongst the fart and penis jokes. And, for the most part, they are successful at this.

A good example of the silly: the questioning of two men dressed as a tiger in the African jungle during the height of the Zulu Wars. The strong cultural criticism comes in scenes like the mutiny of bookkeepers against their corporate masters or the explosion of the supremely gluttonous Michael Palin. In fact, whether intentional or not, The Meaning of Life is the Monty Python film that contains their most bold-faced critical social commentary. It is good for a chuckle, but unquestionably funnier to those fed up with many aspects of culture which seem to defy logic.

Movie Details

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.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate