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Return from Witch Mountain
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this live-action Disney classic centers around the theme of mind control. Since Tony and Tia are capable of using their psychic powers to move objects of any size, their talents are invaluable to evil geniuses. A doctor uses an implanted device to control Tony's mind. The child has no ability to refuse the doctor's whims.
What's the story?
In this sequel to Escape to Witch Mountain, Tony (Ike Eisenmann) and Tia (Kim Richards) are transported by space ship to Los Angeles so that they can get a taste of the "big city." Once they bid farewell to their uncle and climb into a waiting taxi cab, all of their plans go awry. They never make it to the hotel where they were planning to stay. Instead, Tony is abducted by an evil scientist (Christopher Lee) and his money-hungry companion (Bette Davis.) They recognize that he has psychic power and implant a device that controls his thoughts. Tia enlists help from a "gang" of kids who help her find her brother. Tony's captors try to make money and gain power by using him as they wish.
Is it any good?
The very fact that the kids end up in a plutonium processing plant makes this adventure a little too James Bondish for its target age group. But Bette Davis and Christopher Lee bring a villainous intensity to this "kid power" project that gives it credence. Parents who remember when this movie hit the big screen will enjoy reminiscing with their kids about the days when being in a gang had nothing to do with guns and drugs.
Speaking of parents -- there are none to be seen in this movie. The closest thing to a parental figure is the lovable truant officer Yoyo (Jack Soo.) And you have to wonder what would happen if Tia didn't save Tony. But no matter -- the trip back in time is worth the effort it takes to suspend a little disbelief.
Talk to your kids about ...
- In theaters: March 10, 1978
- On DVD or streaming: March 10, 2009
- Cast: Bette Davis, Christopher Lee, Ike Eisenmann, Kim Richards
- Director: John Hough
- Studio: Walt Disney Pictures
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Adventures, Book Characters, Space and Aliens
- Run time: 94 minutes
- MPAA rating: G
- MPAA explanation: General Audiences
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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.