The Sound of Music Live!

Movie review by
Tracy Moore, Common Sense Media
The Sound of Music Live! Movie Poster Image
Telecast of classic has same great music, not as much magic.
  • PG
  • 2013
  • 135 minutes

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 3 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Some exposure to the events surrounding World War II as experienced in Austria. Some exposure to the discipline and training of choir singing.

Positive Messages

It's important to stand up for what you believe in. Art and music are essential to happiness in life. Children need discipline as much as they need warmth, play time, and encouragement. Familial loyalty and love can guard against difficult circumstances. Good things, such as new love or deeper insight, can come from tragic circumstances.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Adults are largely engaged and present and capable of learning from their mistakes and changing their minds. Maria is a particularly invested caregiver who immerses herself in loving the von Trapp children and improving their lives through music and warmth. The von Trapp children are kind, compassionate, sympathetic, and realistically flawed. Most characters aim to do what is right and good and to refuse to participate in an unjust system. Those who are willing to participate are shown as flawed but understandable participants in a complicated situation.

Violence & Scariness

Very minor peril at the end when Nazi soldiers track the von Trapp family as they try to escape Austria. A soldier holds some of the family at gunpoint, but no one is harmed. Some brief discussions refer to hostages but nothing is explicit. A brief scene shows children frightened during heavy thunderstorms.

Sexy Stuff

During a song about the way boys will woo women ("Sixteen Going on Seventeen"), a teenage boy and girl dance together around a tree as he pursues her. A man and woman kiss.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Sound of Music Live! is the telecast of the original film, The Sound of Music, featuring Carrie Underwood in the role of Maria with a heavy focus on the famous songs of the original. There is very little direct discussion of the realities of World War II and no explicit discussion of Nazi atrocities. The final moments of the film contain some peril as the family makes their escape and are tracked by soldiers, one of whom briefly pulls a gun on the family. There is a brief subplot of romance with a 16-year-old daughter but nothing graphic.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byLowe's man May 23, 2015

Even better than the original; more age appropriate too, might I add.

Both the discussions of World War II and the scenes of the war are sanitized, therefore making this version more appropriate than the original for younger child... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old December 9, 2016
Is so entertaining I could watch it 123543613438689314658952145 times in a row and still want to watch it more
Teen, 15 years old Written byDogcat November 14, 2020

I hate this movie!

Carrie sucks so bad!!!!!!!!!!!

What's the story?

Maria (Carrie Underwood) has just been hired as a governess to the seven children of a strict widower, Captain von Trapp (Stephen Moyer). As she works to win them over with love, warmth, and musical training, she begins to fall for von Trapp. Meanwhile, von Trapp is practically engaged to Frau Schrader (Laura Benanti), and all anticipate their fates as World War II encroaches upon Austria, forcing them to make big decisions about their lives and political leanings. 

Is it any good?

THE SOUND OF MUSIC LIVE! couldn't possibly live up to the magnificence of The Sound of Music, and it doesn't. This is a film version of a live telecast, and though Carrie Underwood is a magnificent singer, her acting falls a bit flat, and her chemistry with Captain von Trapp is not particularly magical. That said, the setting, songs, and spirit of the original are all here, as are commendable performances from the children, baroness, and some of the nuns. And for families who've worn out viewings of the original or are simply interested in a newer take, there's plenty to entertain children and adults, even if it's only to pick over the differences and various missteps or for the many moments when songs like "Climb Ev'ry Mountain" and "My Favorite Things" come off spectacularly. It's also a very innocuous entry point to discussion of Nazis and World War II, which are introduced here but not enough to frighten too much or mislead. Beyond this, there are countless positive messages represented in the human struggle for stability and love that even a few missteps can't dampen.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how this version compares to the original film. How are they the same? How are they different?

  • Why did some people want to stay in their country while others wanted to leave? How did they make their decision?

  • Which is your favorite song in the film, and why? 

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love musicals

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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