Parents' Guide to

The Boy and the Beast

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

Surprisingly touching coming-of-age adventure has heart.

Movie PG-13 2016 119 minutes
The Boy and the Beast Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 6 parent reviews

age 8+

Very well made and thoughtful

A little scary at the start and the end for younger ones but good laughter and we'll paced story telling. City scenes are beautiful for the eyes. Recommended.
age 10+

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (6 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Fabulously voice-acted and featuring lovably flawed characters, this is a touching animated story about an orphaned boy who's raised by a warrior beast. Although it takes a while to establish Kyuta and Kumatetsu's uniquely comical, bickering relationship, their mentor-mentee rapport eventually grows into something quite sweet and powerful. Director Mamoru Hosoda has created a coming-of-age tale that's epic, gorgeously animated, and emotional. While too mature for most single-digit-aged viewers, older tweens and teens (especially those familiar with subtitled movies) will connect with Kyuta and enjoy how he not only learns from Kumatetsu, but teaches him, too.

One of the best sequences in the movie is when Kyuta and Kumatetsu, along with a monk-like pig and a wise-cracking monkey, visit the lords of various realms to discover the true meaning of strength, only to find that each has his own definition of the word. Kumatetsu is a bulky behemoth who thinks he doesn't need any advice, but of course he -- also an orphan who taught himself everything -- does, just as Kyuta needs a family. Once a teenager, Kyuta's forays back into the human world are heart-tugging as he develops a friendship (with a hint of romance) with the lovely Kaede (Suzu Hirose). Longing to belong somewhere but feeling stuck between both worlds, Kyuta/Ren is the kind of protagonist audiences will love.

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