The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Arthur and his alien friend travel the galaxy.
  • Review Date: September 12, 2005
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 2005
  • Running Time: 110 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable

Some shooting and some scary moments; Earth is destroyed.

Not applicable

Some mild profanity.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Characters drink beer.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie is partly kooky and partly philosophical, and not always accessible to younger kids. While the slapstick (pratfalls, face slaps) and puns can be amusing, the chatter alternates between clever and tedious. Characters drink beer and use mild language. Parents should also know that the movie has some scary, if abstract moments (the earth is destroyed from outer space; the image features no people, but the globe does go pffft), some shooting of science-fiction-ish weapons, a few odd, large, ugly creatures.

What's the story?

THE HITCHHIKER'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY begins as two friends, nerdish human Arthur (Martin Freeman) and space traveler Ford (Mos Def), depart Earth just before it's demolished by the universe-roving Vogons, looking to make room for a "hyperspace bypass" (this parallels the destruction of Arthur's small home by a road crew building a highway bypass). Arthur and Ford (who brings along his book, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) hitch a ride with the self-loving, two-headed President of the Galaxy Zaphod Beeblebrox (Sam Rockwell) and his girlfriend Trillian (Zooey Deschanel). As Arthur also has a crush on Trillian, he endeavors to win her attention. In search of the meaning of life, the crew visit with diverse communities on different planets, including a cult led by Humma Kavula (John Malkovich), who ritually worship a sneeze, and an architect of custom planets Slartibartfast (Bill Nighy), who offers to rebuild earth for the currently homeless Arthur.

Is it any good?


Based on Douglas Adams' beloved BBC radio series (first aired in 1978, and thereafter turned into novel and TV series), this movie of has been in the works, in some format, for over 20 years. This means that some of the ideas, in being faithful to the source also feel dated, that is, not new insights (media are deceitful, corporate workers are boring and shortsighted, boys are nervous about expressing their feelings to girls... well, okay, some old concerns remain unresolved).

Perhaps the film's most provocative innovation is the POV (point of view) Gun, with which the shooter can instantly impose his perspective on a target. The Guide narrator tells us the gun was invented by "a group of housewives who had become utterly sick of ending every domestic argument with the words, 'You just don't get it, do you?'" Once Trillian gets a hold of this potent weapon, her vulnerability is exposed, which means she finally seems to break through Zaphod and Arthur's self-obsessions. But as the film never suggests how her life will improve once they "get it," Trillion seems left adrift.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the friendship between Arthur and Ford, who learn to appreciate each other's different perspectives and look out for one another. Families might also consider the symbolic roles played by the aliens Arthur meets (the two-headed president of the galaxy; the lumbering bureaucratic race called Vogons; the generous, sensitive Ford), or Arthur's passivity: how does he learn to act on his desires, look out for his friends, or have self-confidence? How can you define "normality"?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:April 29, 2005
DVD release date:September 13, 2005
Cast:Martin Freeman, Mos Def, Zooey Deschanel
Director:Garth Jennings
Studio:Touchstone Pictures
Genre:Science Fiction
Topics:Adventures, Book characters, Misfits and underdogs, Space and aliens
Run time:110 minutes
MPAA rating:PG
MPAA explanation:thematic elements, action and mild language

This review of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 15 years old Written byHylianHobbit April 11, 2013
age 8+

Why has this got such a low score?

This movie is one of my alltime favourites! It's funny, crazy and has a suprizingly complex storyline. I've watched it many times and it never fails to make me laugh. With great acting and lovable characters (Even the manicly depressed robot it lovable!), I don't see how it could be scored so low! I've rated this 8+ because it's not scary and has parts that younger kids will find funny, but it also has a captivating plot that older kids and adults will find enjoyable!
Adult Written byyoda April 9, 2008
age 0+

Ridiculous Movie for Non-Believers

IF you believe the universe just happened and that creation is false, you'll like it.
Teen, 14 years old Written byNeil13 March 26, 2011
age 10+

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

I liked it
What other families should know
Great messages


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