A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Prince Killian and the Holy Grail (aka Captain Thunder), a Spanish film set in the Middle Ages, is based on a popular Spanish comic book hero. The DVD released for U.S. audiences has both a dubbed version and one with English subtitles. Filled with swordplay in which characters are impaled and killed, the movie also includes supernatural sequences and relies heavily on bondage, black magic, witchcraft, and a monster living just beneath the earth's surface. A dizzying cast of heroes and villains, enemies and friends, fight over Jesus' chalice and fantastical otherworldly dangers. Mildly gruesome images accompany the battles (i.e. human heads, writhing snakes), and an underlying sexual mockery follows the few female characters.
What's the story?
Set during the time of King Richard of Britain's Third Crusade, the hero in PRINCE KILLIAN AND THE HOLY GRAIL first battles Moslem (in the 21st century called "Muslim") forces in Egypt, and is then sent back to Spain to defend his home country against a horde of both villainous enemies and supernatural events. Under his care and protection as he travels are a Viking princess and Jesus' legendary chalice. With his trusty companions -- a giant and young lad -- Killian faces and must defeat power-hungry villains and mystical forces, which include black magic, witches, and strange occurrences beneath the earth.
Is it any good?
There must have been a substantial budget for this film; the costumes, weaponry, and sets look good. Everything else is simply terrible -- the script, performances, special effects, direction, even the sub-titles. And the dubbed version is almost unwatchable. A confusing story with way too many characters doesn't help either. The "comedy" isn't funny; the action is amateurish and unexciting; and the female characters are laughable at best. Even kids who like derring-do, some "swash" with their "buckle," and the romance of old history will find nothing redeeming about this mess of a movie.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about "genre" movies (classification or style of film). List some of the many film genres. This movie attempts to fit into several categories. What are they? Is it a successful blend?
Find out more about the Crusades of the Middle Ages. In what way, if any, are there echoes of the Crusades in modern-day history?
What is "comic relief?" What is the attempted comic relief in this movie?
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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.