The Prince of Egypt

Movie review by
Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
The Prince of Egypt Movie Poster Image
Animated feature tells story of Moses; some violence.
  • PG
  • 1998
  • 99 minutes
Popular with kidsParents recommend

Parents say

age 8+
Based on 14 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 32 reviews

We think this movie stands out for:

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

Kids will learn more about an Old Testament story.

Positive Messages

Retelling and reinterpretation of The Book of Exodus from the Old Testament. Unlike just about every other movie centered on stories from the Bible, characters are actually people of color. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Female lead characters are strong and independent. 

Violence & Scariness

Some scary scenes involving slavery. Depictions of babies dropped and thrown into crocodile-filled bodies of water. Slaves whipped, hit, and generally abused physically and verbally. Moses kills a slave driver. 

Sexy Stuff

While competing against Rameses in a chariot race, Rameses is on a road above the one Moses is on, and Moses looks up and says "it's not much of a view" as Rameses' short uniform exposes his rear.

Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Wine is dumped on the heads of two merchants by two royal brothers. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Prince of Egypt is a 1998 animated musical feature based on The Book of Exodus. There are scenes of slaves being whipped, hit, and verbally and physically abused. There are depictions of babies dropped and thrown into crocodile-infested waters. Moses kills a slave driver. While competing against Rameses in a chariot race, Rameses is on a road above the one Moses is on, and Moses looks up and says "it's not much of a view" as Rameses' short uniform exposes his rear. It's worth mentioning that, unlike almost every Bible story presented on film, the characters in this movie are people of color. 

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 4 and 6 year old Written byParatrooperWife October 20, 2009

Stunning Movie!!...Many Opportunities for Discussion...

Our kids have watched this since they were about 1 and 3 years old. I have had to do a lot of explaining about the slaves, why they were being hurt and made to... Continue reading
Parent of a 7 and 7 year old Written bylschlezinger April 10, 2010

Accurate Retelling of Exodus/Story of Moses - but not for preschoolers

We watched Prince of Egypt during the Jewish holiday of Passover, which celebrates the escape from slavery in Egypt. I loved the film for its faithfulness to th... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byGaara-Kazekage April 29, 2011

So wonderful, that they've made it a world wide film translated in over 100 languages.

It's been my favorite sinse I was little. Beautiful animation and soundtrack, and keeps a tad well with the story. Sure a few things are changed, but not e... Continue reading
Kid, 9 years old July 8, 2009

CLASSIC

this movie is a classic i love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What's the story?

Dreamworks SKG's first animated feature is a respectful retelling of the story of Moses. The movie takes some liberties with the story, with Moses (voice of Val Kilmer) and Ramses (voice of Ralph Fiennes) raised as brothers who love each other deeply. But Moses learns that he was born a slave and that the man he loves and respects as his father, the Pharaoh Seti (voice of Patrick Stewart), once ordered the murder of the slave babies. Struggling with his new understanding, he impulsively pushes aside a guard who is beating a slave, and the guard falls to his death. Ramses promises to pardon him, but Moses runs away. He lives peacefully with nomads, marrying the spirited Tzipporah (voice of Michelle Pfeiffer), until he receives a message from God, telling him that he must return to Egypt and free the slaves. Ramses, by now Pharaoh, is at first happy to see him, but refuses to grant his plea to "let my people go." Felled by plagues that include locusts, boils, frogs, and, finally, the death of the first-born children, Ramses finally agrees. But just as Moses is leading the Hebrews through the parted Red Sea, Ramses arrives with his army. The Red Sea closes over them, and Moses and his people are free.

Is it any good?

Presided over by former Disney-ite Jeffrey Katzenberg, the movie has some astonishing visual effects, particularly a chariot race that rivals Ben Hur and the parting of the Red Sea. This story, central to three great world religions, should be familiar to most children. The filmmakers have done a good job of making it exciting and vivid while being careful not to offend anyone. The musical numbers are largely forgettable, but the characters and the story remain compelling. Ramses, loving Moses but terrified of being responsible for the end of a dynasty, is, if not a sympathetic character, a flawed but understandable one. And Miriam and Tzipporah are strong, intelligent female characters.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's themes of taking responsibility and the importance of freedom. 

  • How does this compare to other film interpretations of passages from The Bible? 

  • How was violence used to show the barbarity of slavery as practiced by the Egyptians during the time of Moses? Was this violence necessary? Why or why not? 

Movie details

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