All parent member reviews for Pan's Labyrinth

Parents say

(out of 42 reviews)
age 15+
Review this title!
Adult Written byTheosdoren January 3, 2009

I couldn't Sleep Because of the Violence I saw!!!

I only watched the first 10 minutes or so when I saw a horribly violent scene where a man is beaten to death with a wine bottle, then his father is shot in cold blood! Horrible, just horrible! I watch movies to be entertained not haunted!
Parent of a 5 year old Written byslantmaster March 20, 2011
This is a complex film for complex viewers. Considering it's in subtitles, younger kids would not be able to watch it, it requires a good reader to keep up with the lines so that's why I suggest age 12. You will need to gauge your child's maturity level before watching this: there is a scene where a man bashes another man's face in with the bottom of a bottle, a scene where a man is stabbed and his lip cut open so much that he has to sew it together later. There are graphic scenes, and it is set in a war setting so that in itself is very mature. There is a fairy tale element as the story is told mostly from the child's perspective and one woman who is a guerrilla and sort of a maid for the child. It is a movie worth watching, and just make sure your kids are mature enough to watch it.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byrfrary April 9, 2008

I felt ripped off

My main gripe is not that it was a bad movie, but rather that I had no idea that it was all in a foreign language. If I weren't forced to read the subtitles I may have been able to actually see the movie. Although the special effects were good, they were too few and far between. The trailers seen on tv fail to mention it's not in english and portray a much better movie than it really is. I would expect to see this low grade 'B' movie on late night tv, not in theaters.
Parent of a 9 year old Written byXanderCrews January 13, 2011

Not for kids but a Grrrrreat movie.

Films like this are few and far between. You should introduce your kids to this movie when you believe they are the right age.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Adult Written byPL Hans October 25, 2010

Great Adult Fairy Tale

This is a brilliant movie. The characters are memorable and well-defined, the story is brilliant, the music is "trance-inducing", as it was described to me, and the color-coding is phenomenal. Parents should know that there are several gross scenes in the fantasy world, as well as several graphic ones in the "real" world(the worst being the first one, in which a teenager is beaten to death with a bottle). Parents can also discuss whether the fantasy world was real or not, and whether the Faun was all good, all bad, or a combination.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 10 year old Written byaflint August 5, 2010
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent of a 5, 9, 11, and 14 year old Written byJamesRobertson January 4, 2009
Adult Written byWaffy October 18, 2010

Thought provoking for the grown ups

A great film full of interesting messages for adults to consider, but don't be fooled into thinking it's a kids' film because of the lead character being 11 years old. Please also don't be put off by the opening violence; it sets a scene from which Ofelia needs to run away and frames the fantasy side perfectly.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Great messages
Adult Written bygwelland April 9, 2008

Must See for anyone with an enquiring mind

Fabulously dark allegorical film that combines the brutal reality of the Spanish Civil War and the escapist, mystical world of a young girl and Pan's Labyrinth. Not for the feignt of heart, this film is pretty graphic in it's representation of the war and the main Captain character's brutal behaviour. The imagery of the childs nether world and cross over to reality are simply stunning. Open your mind and think beyond the obvious imagery and storyline of the film and you'll find an Oscar worthy film without all the Hollywood fluff. The closest I've seen from the domestic US film studios have been Mel Gibson's epics of Apocolypto & Passion of Christ.
Adult Written byfiona April 9, 2008

A well-crafted movie - but very disturbng.

This movie is well made - but I didn't enjoy it much! It is very graphically violent and throughout the movie I fear for the little 11 year-old girl (whom we see badly hurt at the beginning of the movie). The fairy-tale fantasy sequences are well done, the effects wonderful, but are extremely frightening on a primal, archetypal level. This is definately not a movie for children to watch. There is a menace throughout in both real and the parallel fantasy worlds.
Adult Written byBibiloFyle22 December 2, 2015

Beautiful movie, cannot watch it again though

The fall semester of my junior year in undergrad (last year) I had to watch this movie for a course called Contemporary Culture in the Spanish Speaking World, and judging from the parents' guide reviews I felt doubtful that I was ever going to get through this movie. I am a highly sensitive person and an introvert who cannot handle movies with lots of violence and sex even though other 20s somethings I talk to at my school watch violent programs and movies. The professor recommended that I watch this movie and fast forward through the graphic parts. I am very glad I closed my eyes during a scene towards the beginning in which a man gets his nose beaten to a bloody pulp by a political official who think he is conspiring with anti-government rebels (he also shoots him and the other man who is with him). There's also some stomach turning scenes (a vomit scene, eating fairy's heads off, stabbings and shootings during the war) and the Pale Man and the Faun might be scary for some people. I watched this film about seven times so that I could write a critical analysis (in Spanish, of course) about the aesthetics of the blood in the film, and I will tell you right now, watching this film more than once will damage you psychologically and emotionally. Many of you may think me foolish for doing this, but in college I find it helpful to study by watching and reading things multiple times. Rooting this film in an academic context only goes so far before you're having nightmares at 2 am even while you're up writing the paper. I admire Ofelia because she is so brave and imaginative in a very dark historical time (after the Spanish Civil War). The critics though weren't lying though when they said in the movie's trailer that it's a "fairy tale for grownups". THIS MOVIE IS NOT FOR LITTLE KIDS. IT IS VERY BEAUTIFUL YET VERY DARK. It's not a bad film, though, by any means; Guillermo del Toro does a positively BEAUTIFUL job with the cinematography and the music. So long story short, whether or not you can handle this film depends on your emotional sensitivity level. Just don't watch it with little kids or people who can't handle lots of bloody violence.
Parent Written byCatagious September 17, 2015

I never made it through this one.

First scene of really graphic violence and I never went back. It took ages to not see it vivedly when I closed my eyes. The step father beats a man's face in with a glass bottle until his nose caves in. I was so done.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent of a 10 year old Written byrodria September 14, 2015

NOT FOR KIDS

What other families should know
Too much violence
Adult Written byTwixthekitty November 2, 2014

One of my absolute favourites

I first saw this movie when I was 12, and now 8 years later is the first time I've managed to watch it without covering my face - it definitely upset me and I was definitely not ready for this movie at the time. I think my mom misunderstood what kind of movie it was when we rented it. However, it stuck with me all these years and is still one of the most beautiful, heartbreaking things I've ever seen. It's a film that's a little ambiguous, and I change my mind about what's really happening every time I watch it - great for discussion afterwards. In terms of warnings, there's a particularly brutal scene where a man has his nose smashed in with the butt of a wine bottle, very graphically. It scared me more than anything else in the movie as a kid, and even now was very difficult to watch. There's also an incident with a Glasgow smile, though it wasn't as graphic as I remembered it - that should stand as a testament that this is only appropriate for kids with a very high tolerance for upsetting imagery. For those who can handle it though, this film is a masterpiece - it still looks impressive today thanks to the use of practical effects over CG, and the soundtrack is lovely and haunting. If you haven't already, go see it!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Adult Written byBestPicture1996 September 28, 2014

Graphically violent fantasy is original and wonderous

Parents should know that this excellent movie about the power imagination can have and the choices you make in life has graphic violence, a shocking amount considering it's ultimately a little fairy tale. This movie showed that, along with "Hellboy," director Guillermo del Toro has undeniably Gothic, imaginative style. I also expected more fantasy elements to the story, and while there were plenty there was DEFINITELY enough realism and fantasy in the story to justify it's critical acclaim. Vidal is one of the nastiest characters I've seen onscreen for a while, and little Ofelia will break your heart. Cinephiles will love this, and I think the mainstream has embraced it as well!
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much violence
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written bycritic sense November 4, 2012

Recommended Rating: 14+ for brutal violence, disturbing scenes and brief strong language

Although this is a fantasy film, it's directed toward the adult audience. There are scenes of strong and brutal violence, including a man's face being beaten into a bloody pulp, a man being tortured, and a leg being amputated. There are graphic war scenes, where many people are shot with bloody bullet wounds. The film has a dark, unsettling atmosphere and some scary fantasy elements. The scene where a pale man chases a little girl may be too disturbing and frightening for younger viewers. There is some strong language (including 5 F-words), but it's subtitled.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Parent Written byjumpinj September 28, 2012

Well, to others this may seem a bit mature for smaller kids, whereas I think it's great for kids 4 and up, that's my opinion. I grew up on horror, though I wouldn't let my child near many of the movies I saw at that age I believe fairy tales are meant to have that dark, creepy edge that this film has: the creepy character designs, the odd habits, the frightening looking labyrinth itself. This all adds to a child's imagination, I probably would've never become an artist if it weren't for a lot of what I grew up on. The stuff that makes you think visually and story-wise outside of the box. Would I let a four year old watch Robocop? No, but Pan's Labyrinth? Yes.

What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent of a 17 year old Written byTsion July 14, 2012

It will blow you away....NOT FOR KIDS OR TEENS

I'm frankly kind of shocked that CommonSense rated this for 15 year olds, as did all of the adult reviewers. Maybe we didn't see the same movie...The "Pan's Labyrinth" I saw was visually breathtaking, artistically mind-blowing, emotionally harrowing, and brutally violent. No one is left unscathed by the film's conclusion. The movie is about the loss of innocence, and tells the story of a wonderful little girl who must retreat to a fantasy land of her own creation in order to flee from the nightmarish violence that has engulfed her life. Her stepfather is a sadistic army colonel. He shoots countless people over the course of the movie, including civilians. He beats a teenager's nose into his head with a wine bottle (we hear it crack and see its disfigured shape). A man's leg is amputated. Another man's face is split at his cheek (think the Joker from Batman) onscreen (with splatter) and we see him stitching it back together, stitch by stitch. A woman dies in childbirth, and we see her bloody sheets. A man is tortured with tools like hammers and chisels. We see abundant blood and gore in all of these instances. It's not unnecessary and it serves the story and message, but it's enough to overpower anyone watching, especially kids and teens. When people say this fantasy is for adults, they aren't kidding. It's one of the most beautiful movies you'll ever see (visually and thematically), but it should be shown to NO kids under ANY circumstances. The uncompromising harshness of the film had me in tears by its end. Go out of your way to see it, but make sure the kids are in bed first...even the teenagers.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much violence
Adult Written byBender_Sastre October 5, 2011

A film for the college-level Spanish student

Beautifully told. Amazing visual effects. Very representative of post Spanish Civil War times. A good college-level film. Doesn't offend my sensibilities, but I wouldn't recommend letting anyone younger than 17 watch it; it IS rated 'R', after all. The violence is not the glorified, Hollywood violence, so gunshot wounds don't launch projectile blood, but you do watch a man get his face mutilated. If you speak Spanish, the swearing is worse than how they represent it in the translation.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Adult Written bykittenkelly August 3, 2011

awesome!

i, like, totally loved this movie. it was, like, so sad and scary and then, like, there was all these creatures and, like, they were helping this little girl. but, like,some scenes were, like, bloody and violent so i had to, like, turn my head. but overall it was, like, awesome!
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much violence

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