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Parents' Guide to


By Brian Costello, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Frequent battle violence in war-themed ghost story.

Movie NR 2016 108 minutes
Spectral Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 10+

Superb movie

age 10+

Spectral Review: The Greatness is Invisible

Spectral makes for a nearly perfect instance of standard Netflix B-movie fare - hardly anything more than a library-building stunt on the part of the folks running said establishment. If it happens that killing an hour and forty seven minutes watching a military operation attempt to contain a horde of supposedly supernatural militia in a dystopian world full of all the typical tropes you could reasonably expect from such, nicely fits with the day's agenda - by all means, go ahead! But ask precious little from Spectral, as the most you'll get is a dull and meaningless sci fi whose character and world building feel closer knit to a video game than a movie, which it may one day be learned must have heart, meaning, and creativity before it attains to any proportionate success. There really is very little that is redeeming in Spectral - cast, music, effects, script, costumes, design, blocking all feel entirely sub-par. It almost feels a waste of time and effort to analyse it. There is no significant sexual content (a woman changing outfit can briefly be seen in underwear, and a soldier claps another soldier's crotch), and violence is fairly mild, with plenty of casualties, though the movie rarely lingers on them, and most are not very hard-hitting or moving, save one (when a central character dies). Language is listed below, time-stamped to the approximate moment: 5:35 - sh** 20:00 - b*lls 30:44 - piece of sh** 36:29 - sh** 1:11:50 - G**_da** 1:27:33 - G** 1:33:40 - he**

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (3 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Once the action gets going, SPECTRALl is nonstop action. The battle scenes are frenzied with edge-of-your-seat excitement, and unlike so many other war-themed movies, no clear-cut direction pointing to just how this movie will end. It's an interesting concept explored as fully as the technological details of much of the equipment used to fight the battle.

Where it falls short are the scenes before the action takes hold. The pacing gets bogged down with unnecessary interpersonal conflicts, overexplanations of character backstory, the technology on hand to fight the war, the reasons for the civil war in Moldova, and a debate about technology being used to better humankind or to line the pockets of defense contractors. All of this is presented with intrusive direction -- cameras constantly move, hop, and spin, almost as if the cameras themselves are as eager to get to real conflicts as the audience. Such aspects make this best for fans of sci-fi military movies.

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