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 violent content in this take on The Three Musketeers will be a factor for younger viewers -- good and bad guys die (mostly by the sword), and there's one suicide by jumping. And while much of the frequent sexual innuendo will go over kids' head, there's plenty of ogling, kissing, and cleavage/overflowing corsets for them to see. Teamwork and loyalty are strong themes, but characters also struggle with self-doubt/recrimination and have clearly made mistakes. Expect some drinking/carousing, but language doesn't get much stronger than "damn."
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
D'Artagnan (Chris O'Donnell) is a young wannabe Musketeer who arrives just as the famous group is disbanded. His quick temper soon draws the ire of three of the group's most famous members: Porthos, Athos, and Aramis (in order, Oliver Platt, Kiefer Sutherland, Charlie Sheen). Just before they all duel, d'Artagnan ends up helping the Musketeers fend off an evil cardinal's guard. Alliances follow along with witty banter, wanton wenches, and heroic sacrifices.
Is it any good?
The heroes, sword fighting, and political intrigue are all front and center in Disney's retelling of THE THREE MUSKETEERS, but they definitely took some licenses with the original story. Specifically, they made the character the swashbucklers try to save -- Milady de Winter (Rebecca DeMornay) -- far more sympathetic than she is in Alexandre Dumas' book. Instead of a vicious spy who marries for money, she becomes a falsely accused woman who lost the love of her life and then became vile but redeemable.
It's lots of fun if you're in the right mood/mindset, but this adaptation is more like an MTV version than a true retelling of the classic story, gathering some popular '90s actors for light swashbuckling amusement. Accents come and go, the language is more modern American English than 17th-century French, and the acting and comedy are more slapstick than reverent theater.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about honor and duty. Of the four famed Musketeers, who's the most honorable? Even heroes make mistakes. What mistakes did D'Artagnan make?
What role does violence play in the movie? How does it compare to what you might see in an action/adventure movie set during modern times?
- In theaters: November 12, 1993
- On DVD or streaming: August 24, 1999
- Cast: Charlie Sheen, Chris O'Donnell, Kiefer Sutherland, Oliver Platt
- Director: Stephen Herek
- Studio: Walt Disney Pictures
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Adventures, Book Characters
- Run time: 105 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: action/violence and some brief sensuality
- Last updated: September 21, 2019
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