The Reef 2: High Tide

Movie review by
Tracy Moore, Common Sense Media
The Reef 2: High Tide Movie Poster Image
Sequel is less intense than original but still menacing.
  • PG
  • 2012
  • 87 minutes

Parents say

age 3+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 3+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Meant to entertain rather than educate.

Positive Messages

The Reef 2: High Tide offers positive messages about teamwork, community, loyalty, and friendship. It promotes standing up for yourself and the idea that everyone has an important role in any community and that all those roles should be valued. But, in spite of these positive messages, the plot does involve teaching a neighborhood to learn to fight to solve the problem of an unrelenting bully.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Characters in the Reef community are largely supportive, loyal friends, and loving neighbors. The sharks and their cohorts are simplistically evil, though one character's reasons for going along with the bullying are explained, and he does make things right.

Violence & Scariness

Sustained peril throughout as a group of sharks and their ringleader terrorize the Reef and plot revenge, from the opening scenes of a menacing shark with gleaming teeth busting out of a cage, to the numerous threats he issues to the other fish with taunts and insults. Many scenes involve high-speed swimming with razor teeth open wide, and the gobbling of a handful of fish throughout, and, in one instance, a snake. A female is kidnapped and locked in a cell. A shark thrashes his tail against rocks to startle and scare other fish, and several scenes involve shark-to-fish scuffles, swipes, and chases. A shark is pummeled with rocks and flung across the sea.

Sexy Stuff

Insulting, bullying language used throughout, such as "coward" and "wrinkle face."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Reef 2: High Tide has some mean-spirited bullying and taunting, a female fish who is kidnapped, and a lot of sustained peril as a nasty shark with razor-sharp teeth plots revenge and taunts a community of fish. Even though it offers positives messages about valuing everyone's role and standing up for yourself, it ultimately shows that violence must be used to solve the problem of violence.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byLebron12James3 May 14, 2021

I’m not an angry parent

I’m not an angry parent. I just write reviews for stuff in an attempt to be funny.
Teen, 14 years old Written byPoppy From The ... February 19, 2021

Even worse than the first one

This movie is so god awful I can’t even put it into words. The CGI is even worse than the animation from the first movie. The animation is even creepy at times.... Continue reading

What's the story?

Pi (Drake Bell) is now a father to Max and husband to Cordelia (Busy Phillips), and all is well in the Reef until Troy returns, recently escaped from his cage and ready to plot revenge. His plan? To ruin the Reef however he can. Pi wants to gather his troops and train them to fight as he did before, but they aren't interested, which means Pi will have to choose what's more important: leading the way or working together.

Is it any good?

THE REEF 2: HIGH TIDE is a softer film than the original. There's more time here spent on the community working together, training to fight, and putting on a big show, and it takes time to explore more issues about group dynamics and what it means to really value everyone's role in a group, no matter how big or small. The animation is improved, but there's still a constant menace that's a bit mean-spirited (gobbling fish and snakes and chasing everyone in sight with a vengeance) that could frighten younger kids, to whom the film seems targeted.

Older kids still interested in ocean adventures might be captivated by the bright colors, the silly characters, and the thrill of the chase, but parents should be ready to assuage fears with little ones. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about bullying. What are some other ways to handle a bully that don't involve violence? Do you think the fish had any other choice but to fight back?

  • What are some different roles that people in your family play, and how are they all important? What is your role in the family? 

  • How can you stand up for yourself without resorting to hitting or fighting? Have you ever had to do it? What happened?

Movie details

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For kids who love animals

Themes & Topics

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