A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Making the ultimate sacrifice to protect others is a major theme. Trust, redemption, and forgiveness are also vital to the story.
Positive Role Models
Children are fearful, and one brother is greedy and selfish, but the kids learn to trust one another and work together.
Violence & Scariness
Opening scene of WWII bombing in London; a boy is imprisoned and abused by an evil witch; often-intense (but pretty bloodless) battles involving animals, mythical creatures, and kids. Some severe injuries and deaths. Combatants wield bows and arrows, swords, and spears.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Some inter-sibling name-calling (including "idiot").
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Professor smokes a pipe.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe has some sad, scary, and violent scenes for a PG film. The movie begins with a bombing during the Blitz in London. The children are separated from their mother, which could upset some younger audience members. There are other sad scenes where animals die -- including principle characters. A friendly fox is chased and caught by a pack of wolves, who also chase the children. A witch yells at a young boy, chains him in prison, and stabs him. She also abuses her servant, stabs her enemies with a sword that turns them to stone, martyrs the lion, and leads troops into battle. The children learn to fight, then engage in hand-to-hand combat and sword fighting; one sister shoots an enemy with an arrow. There is a pitched battle with deaths and grave injuries. While not overt, the movie includes Christian imagery (a martyred, Christlike lion, a rebirth from magic water) and allegorical storylines. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Long and lush and directed by Shrek's Andrew Adamson, this film makes a case for love among siblings by granting them a common enemy. The scariest scene in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe comes at the start: a night sky is filled with smoke and warplanes. As the Germans bomb London during WWII, the Pevensie children scramble to the backyard bomb shelter. designates moral positions in part by associating certain animals and mythical creatures with them. These embodiments take a cue from the Lord of the Rings franchise, assembled according to beauty and horridness: sleek and elegant animals like cheetahs and horses and centaurs form Aslan's crew; ogres, dwarves, and minotaurs constitute Jadis' fearsome assembly. None of the Christian elements are obvious and a viewer could watch the movie without realizing any of this -- as with the book.
The final battle returns the children to the film's opening: they witness (and now enact) violent destruction of bodies and material. The fight images are rendered in grand terms, as the two armies gather on hilltops and leaders raise their arms to prompt forward motion. This motion initially is like thunder -- a rush of rumbling hooves and wheels. At the moment of first impact, when a cheetah and a tiger leap on one another, the sound goes out for an instant. It's awful, maybe thrilling, but only for a moment. It recalls the awesome power of war, to pretend glory and abstract honor. And that is scary.
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.