Nature of the Beast

  • Review Date: October 19, 2007
  • Rated: NR
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2007
  • Running Time: 90 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Werewolf romance isn't really family friendly.
  • Review Date: October 19, 2007
  • Rated: NR
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2007
  • Running Time: 90 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

You can make a case for there being a take-away about love conquering all, but the movie isn't really about conveying any particularly strong positive messages to viewers.

Positive role models

Julia is devoted to Rich and to finding a way to help him so they can be together, but characters also do a lot of iffy things -- including drinking too much and attacking humans.

Violence

Many scenes include gun use, and characters aim weapons at both humans and werewolves. A werewolf's bullet wounds heal instantly after he's shot. Snarling, slobbering werewolves hunt and attack humans, and a few scenes briefly show violent, bloody bites (throat, thigh). A mutilated raccoon is shown, and there's discussion of a man disfiguring corpses. A minor character is said to have died from an attack. Human-to-werewolf transformations include a lot of screaming and moaning. A woman stabs a werewolf, who bursts into flames and evaporates.

Sex

Several kissing scenes and references to sex (a couple talks about "being in the mood," a woman mentions orgasms, college guys talk about "getting laid," sex lives are discussed, etc.). In one scene, sex between an engaged couple is implied (they kiss, then it cuts to them in bed together). The size of werewolf genitals is discussed. An unmarried couple lives together.

Language

Fairly infrequent use of expletives like "ass," "bitch," "hell," and "damn."

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Two teens raid a man's personal belongings for potential drugs and take Wolfsbane, excitedly saying it's "bound to make you high." In a later scene, their drug use is implied as they talk about smoking away their problems and hallucinating. One scene also shows a group of friends drinking excessive amounts of beer.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this suspenseful made-for-TV movie includes occasionally bloody violence and multiple scenes of gun use. Frightening werewolves hunt and attack humans, biting them to pass along the curse or, in one case, devouring them altogether (the act isn't shown, but a character is said to have died this way). When humans shoot a werewolf to protect themselves, his wounds heal instantly without affecting him at all. There's drinking, references to drug use (two teens seek out herbs that will get them high), kissing scenes and allusions to sexual activity (including mention of orgasm and being "in the mood"), and some iffy language (mostly "hell," "ass," and "damn").

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What's the story?

Weeks before her wedding, starry-eyed Julia (Autumn Reeser) discovers that her fiancé, Rich (Eddie Kaye Thomas), is a werewolf, and his monthly excursions are his way of protecting others from his darker, more dangerous side. Instead of running for the hills, Julia sets her sights on finding a cure for his affliction. Despite his assurances that he can lead a normal life (with a few minor tweaks here and there), her research leads him to seek out the creature that bit him four years earlier; its death would free Rich from the curse he's under. But hunting the creature down and killing it proves to be more difficult -- and more personal -- than Rich could have imagined. In the end, it's Julia's devotion to her fiancé that's the deciding factor in whether he's able to conquer his inner demon.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Rooted in legend and mysticism, Nature of the Beast is entertaining -- if at times a bit hokey -- but it's certainly not meant for tweens or younger/sensitive teens. Special effects make the human-to-werewolf transformations surprisingly seamless, and violence is at times both bloody and related to gun use. Snarling, vicious werewolves hunt and attack their victims (one of whom is said to have died); for one, bullet wounds instantly heal without lasting injury.

It's not really extreme enough to be considered "horror," but couple the violence with the movie's tense suspense, drinking/drug references, and language, and it's probably best reserved for sturdy teens and adults ... if you want to avoid the stuff that frightful dreams are made of.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the appeal of movies and TV shows based on folklore and legends. Do you enjoy stories about creatures like werewolves, ghosts, and vampires? Where do these stories come from? What are some of your other favorite legends? 

  • Do you think there's a difference in how people respond to realistic

  • violence (war scenes, murder) and fantasy violence (werewolf attacks,

  • futuristic laser battles)? Is one type more damaging than the other?

  • Why or why not?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:October 22, 2007
DVD release date:September 8, 2009
Cast:Autumn Reeser, Eddie Kaye Thomas, Eric Mabius
Director:Rodman Flender
Studio:Anchor Bay Entertainment
Genre:Comedy
Run time:90 minutes
MPAA rating:NR

This review of Nature of the Beast was written by

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

About our rating system

  • 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.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written byNintendofan April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Do NOT let your kids see this

I saw the commercials advertising this movie as part of ABC family's thirteen days of halloween, and expected it to be a cute family friedly movie. I was shocked and disgusted to find out that it was not. CSM usually does a good job of telling you everything that is in a movie, but they didn't get half of the movie's sexual content on this one. It was pretty rank. Although there are no actual "make out" scenes, sex drips form half the lines of dialogue. Two boys talk about "walking in" on their grandmother, a college flash back shows three guys sitting around a table talking about sex while the oldest makes references to "getting laid" and his "natural talents", At a meeting three women ask Julia about her sex life in very graphic terms, and later in the movie the werewolf hunter says that one way you can tell an Alpha Wolf from a Beta Wolf is that in human form they have an exceptionally long ____ (insert male anatomical term here, and yes they actually say the word and not just a euphimism) There was also one scene were it is implied that the engaged couple have sex, but nothing more is shown past the two falling back on the bed kissing while undoing the man's tie. The next scene shows the two lying in bed undressed. The violence was also pretty graphic for a supposedly family friendly movie. A were-wolf attacks one man and violently bites opens his throat, accompanied by screaming and crushing sounds. A dog is eaten. A man is violently bitten on his thigh. After becoming a werewolf he is shot and shown to be in pain. We also see a shot of a disemboweled raccoon, which I found disturbing. Also there is talk of a man mutilating corpses, because he believed them to be vampires. Finally there was a very explicit drug scene in themovie parents should know about. After sneeking off into the woods, two boys sit and smoke herbs they found in the main characters suitcase, and talk about getting high and hallucinating. They also picture the two boys to be sweating and appearing "stoned" while saying things like "smoke it off" Overall I thought this movie was very inapprpriate for children or teens for that matter. Even adults who have strong values such as myself, may find this movie to be disgusting. CSM is my favorite and most trusted website for family viewing, but they undrerated this one. It definately should have gotten that TV-MA.
Adult Written byDecent Guy April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Ouch - didn't see rating beforehand.

Have 3 kids - 11, 8, 5. I ASSUMED with it being ABC FAMILY that is was probably a safe scare. Wow - was I wrong. The kids got a kick out of the monster violence. They know it's pretend. However - the two boys looking for a drug high were totally non-essential to the story line and the cussing was for the sake of cussing. ABC - in their infinite wisdom - ruined what could be a Halloween classic by trying to be edgy. The caveat was that I did NOT see the show rating before hand. So I am responsible for letting them watch it.

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