Parents' Guide to

Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Intense, dark, muddled adaptation of Jungle Book tales.

Movie PG-13 2018 104 minutes
Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 22 parent reviews

age 5+

A BEAUTIFUL movie that is not afraid to shy away from the TRUE nature of the natural world

The movie is stunning to behold. Yes, it's violent but no more violent than nature itself. There is a playful childlike mannerism to the animations and characters which is heartwarming, however, you are soon reminded that the rawness of nature is not to be trifled with. An important movie for children to learn and understand from. Mowgli is full of emotion and beauty and is not afraid to discuss the importance of morality and reality. Any parent who disregards this movie as being too violent and dark misses the point entirely and forgets a majestic principle. Mowgli is one of a kind and nothing short of a masterpiece.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
1 person found this helpful.
age 15+

Terrifying for kids - beware

I have 2 kids 8 and 10 and I have used common sense for years to choose movies. Last night for the first time I did not. What a mistake!! I assumed it was the Jungle Book. It is a terrifying version of the jungle book. My kids ended up both crying because the only nice character in the movie ended up getting his head chopped off. Don’t make the same mistake I did! If your kids are older or you are looking for a dark movie go for it.

This title has:

Too much violence
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (22):
Kids say (23):

A star-studded voice cast and a charismatic young actor can't save this uneven, startlingly violent take on a tale that's best known for versions with humor and songs, both of which are absent here. The technical aspects of Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle are slick: Colorful visuals capture the dark, dangerous aspects of calling the jungle home. And thanks to his mastery of playing computer-generated creatures, Serkis certainly knows how to make these talking animals come off as ultra-realistic. But sometimes that realism can be off-putting -- as with Shere Khan's sidekick hyena, who's always followed by a ring of buzzing insects.

It's also completely unclear which audience the movie is aiming for. It's far too frightening for younger viewers but will undoubtedly be misperceived as a children's movie. Although the story is mostly a coming-of-age tale -- with Mowgli forced to justify his life with the wolves in a wolf rite of passage, or face banishment from the jungle -- it's not quite funny or mature enough to lure the adolescent viewers who could handle its bloodier moments. Chand does his best to carry the weight of the movie, but the plot starts to get messy and confusing once the man village -- and particularly the hunter (Matthew Rhys) who's working for the villagers -- gets involved. There are a couple of scenes that are so sad and frightening that it's hard not to imagine how traumatizing it will be for kids who misguidedly think this is another Disney-like production.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: November 29, 2018
  • On DVD or streaming: December 7, 2018
  • Cast: Andy Serkis, Cate Blanchett, Rohan Chand
  • Director: Andy Serkis
  • Inclusion Information: Middle Eastern/North African directors, Middle Eastern/North African actors
  • Studio: Netflix
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • Topics: Book Characters, Wild Animals
  • Run time: 104 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13
  • MPAA explanation: intense sequences of action violence including bloody images, and some thematic elements
  • Last updated: February 18, 2023

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