A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Starfleet is notably racially, gender, and species-integrated (with the addition of Mr. Data, even machine-integrated), and there is a strong sense of friendship, duty, loyalty and, if necessary, sacrifice.
Positive Role Models
Picard's vengeful attitude towards the Borg is called into question by a civilian, and he relents. Mr. Data puts his own wishes to be human aside for the greater good.
Violence & Scariness
Spaceship explosions, ray-gun fire, dead bodies seen. Grisly close-combat with the Borg, including snapped necks, injections-implants piercing skin, disembodied or hacked-off body parts, and dissolving flesh.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Dialog about sexuality in general terms, mostly with the android Data being tempted by an inhuman villainess. He talks about being anatomically correct and programmed in "techniques." A human character described as a drunken womanizer.
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More bathroom talk than usual Starfleet regulations, including "bulls--t," "hell."
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Products & Purchases
Tie-ins with three Star Trek TV shows, innumerable action-figure/book/video game spin-offs. Zephraim Cochrane forces the crew to listen to classic rock.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Quite a lot of drinking and drunkenness among the people of Earth, played comically.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know Star Trek: First Contact is the first Trek movie to Go Where No Star Trek Flick Had Gone Before, to a PG-13 rating. It has some pretty gruesome violence and a macabre threat in the menacing Borg, a zombie-like, infectious, cybernetic race who could give younger viewers nightmares. Humans and Borg alike die in battles, with some limbs severed, and a Borg commander can detach her head at will. There is some generalized dialog about sexuality, as well as mild swearing. A historical Starfleet hero is revealed as a misfit drunkard; while his alcoholism is perhaps meant as pathos, it comes across as mainly comical. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Kids (heck, adults too) who have absorbed Treklore on the level of their Pokemon or Buffy the Vampire Slayer scholarship should be delighted by the well-modulated space adventure. Though it comes on like gangbusters (or Borgbusters, as the case may be), as with many Star Trek movies, knowledge of the dense TV mythology is crucial to comprehending this maximum-warp theatrical expansion. Someone who has not seen the cliffhanger episodes in which Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) is captured and turned into a Borg, will be a bit lost -- and Star Trek: First Contact not only references them but also connects, to varying degrees, with Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager, among others. In-joke lines and cameos that made audiences cheer in 1996 may seem puzzling and out of context today.
While the relatively tame stuff on Earth with Zephraim Cochrane seems to have drifted in from an entirely different (and more lighthearted) film, it gives you vital breathing space in between the Borg conflict, in which the stakes are literally a fate worse than death. Indeed, the vibe is not unlike Alien as the purposeful zombies take over deck by deck -- only to meet their match in human will and loyalty.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.