A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
No positive messages emerge in standard action movie.
Positive Role Models
Characters are mostly typical action movie characters (strong but silent hero, cynical cop, etc.). One aspect to the lead character is that he struggles with PTSD
Violence & Scariness
Action movie violence throughout. Movie centers on a young girl getting kidnaped by sex traffickers. Characters shot and killed at point-blank range, also by sniper fire. Characters stabbed and killed. Death by throat-slitting, blood. Plastic bag suffocation death. In flashback scenes, lead character is shown being chained up and tortured, including fingernails yanked out and waterboarding. War movie violence -- flashback scenes show lead character fighting terrorists with guns and machine guns. Bad guy thrown off a building. Reckless driving. Fighting with punches, kicks, knives.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Teen boys talk about sex, make lewd comments about a girl they know.
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"F--k" used a few times. Also: "a--hole," "s--t," "pissed," "bastard." Middle finger.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Cocaine use by clubgoers and also by two of the villains. Teens share a joint. Alcohol consumption in a nightclub. Former soldier talks of getting high on morphine.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Beast (aka La Belva) is a 2020 Italian action movie (with subtitles) in which a war veteran struggling with PTSD must rescue his daughter from a vicious gang of sex traffickers. Expect lots of action movie violence, including killing by guns shot at point-blank range, sniper fire, stabbings, and suffocation. In flashback scenes, the lead character is shown being tortured while chained and also shown being waterboarded. Fighting with kicks, punches, knives. Cocaine use in a nightclub and by some of the villains. Three teen boys share a joint while talking in a lewd manner about a girl they know. Some profanity, including "f--k," "s--t," and "a--hole." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
In The Beast (aka La Belva), a man must use his extensive military skills and experience to rescue his daughter after she's kidnapped by sex traffickers. If this sounds a bit like the 2009 Liam Neeson movie Taken, you're not wrong. It's not an exact comparison, but it's enough to give you the basic idea. For better or worse, this is a standard action movie in which a "strong, silent type" action movie hero must come to the rescue despite cynical police detectives and the kind of over-the-top bad guys who enjoy the finer things in life, such as classical music, while psychotically killing a lackey who failed at the job he was asked to do. Our hero, Leonida, struggles with PTSD and the basic demands of functioning in society, but, not unlike one John Rambo, finds that he can come to the rescue by reverting to the soldier he was born and trained to be.
Despite the many cliches and action movie tropes, The Beast is enjoyable for what it is -- an action movie. Despite its total lack of surprise, once it gets started, the action doesn't relent, and so there isn't enough of a pause to ponder how much this movie borrows from the action movies of the last quarter century. It's entertainment that doesn't require much thought or reflection. Even the predictability of the climactic scene is enjoyable. A bad action movie would have no action, and a good action movie would have action presented in innovative ways. Like most action movies, this lands somewhere in the middle.
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.