The Sword in the Stone
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the main character experiences some bullying, but otherwise the film offers lots of positive lessons about courage, the importance of brains over brawn, the importance of fair play, and the power of love.
What's the story?
Based on the book The Once and Future King by T.H. White, THE SWORD IN THE STONE is the story of the early years of King Arthur. Nicknamed "Wart," the future King Arthur is squire to a knight when he meets Merlin the magician, who promises to take on his education. Merlin turns him into a fish, a bird, and a squirrel to teach him lessons like the importance of brains over brawn. He gets to see this in action when Madame Mim, Merlin's enemy, challenges Merlin to a duel by magic, and, though she cheats, Merlin is able to defeat her. Wart still has his duties as a squire, and, having forgotten the sword for a jousting match, he runs to get it. He sees a sword stuck in a stone and pulls it out, not knowing the legend that whoever will pull the sword out of the stone will be the rightful king. He becomes King Arthur, and listens when Merlin reminds him that knowledge is the real power.
Is it any good?
The Arthur legend has fascinated people for centuries, and this story about Arthur's childhood has special appeal for children. Aside from the fun of seeing what it is like to be a bird, a squirrel, or a fish, and from having your very own wizard as a teacher, there is the highly satisfying aspect of having one's worth, unappreciated by everyone, affirmed so unequivocally.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about what made Arthur the one who could pull the sword out of the stone?
What did he learn from his adventures with Merlin?
How will what he learned help him to be a good king?
How did Madame Mim cheat?
How did Merlin fight back when she did?