A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
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.
- Parents say
- Kids say
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?
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