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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Underscores the idea that love is very powerful. Illustrates clashes between rational thought and supernatural belief, and pokes fun at the differences between English and American cultures
Positive Role Models
In spite of her frustrations with living in a new environment, Ginny Otis eventually learns to make the best of it, and once she realizes the truth behind the "haunted" house she lives in, she stands determined to do the right thing.
Violence & Scariness
A boy grabs an old gun off of a mantel, but does not shoot it. Some scary moments with a ghost haunting the hallways of an old mansion, with suspenseful music, thunder, lightning, and mysterious smoke. Next to a fireplace, a family believes they have found a bloodstain that is growing and can't be removed. Two rowdy brothers engage in pretend sword fights and pillow fights. When these brothers attempt to pull a prank on the ghost in their mansion, the ghost magically flings them out of one room and throws them onto a bench.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some chaste teen romance.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Parents drink wine; a butler drinks from a glass of brandy; a father visits a pub, where characters hold and drink from glasses containing various types of alcoholic beverages -- no one acts intoxicated.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Canterville Ghost is a rather mild ghost story that will likely frighten only the youngest or most sensitive viewers. While the suspense and scariness is tame compared to other movies about haunted houses, the movie is still includes lots of smoke, thunder, lightning, and suspenseful music. There is some drinking by adults, but no one acts intoxicated. All in all, for older kids and parents, this is both an entertaining ghost story and a worthy introduction to the stories of Oscar Wilde. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
For older kids, this adaptation of THE CANTERVILLE GHOST is a lively take on the classic Oscar Wilde short story. Both parents and kids will enjoy Patrick Stewart's portrayal of a ghost with such Shakespearean relish. He clearly has a lot of fun with the role, and his performance more than makes up for the dated special effects that surround him every time he makes an appearance.
Beyond a typical ghost or haunted house story, The Canterville Ghost is also a reflection on love's everlasting quality, the clashes between rational thought and supernatural belief, and a poke at the differences between English and American cultures. It works on many levels; even beyond the scares, The Canterville Ghost is a thoughtful adaptation.
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.