The Visit

Movie review by
Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media
The Visit Movie Poster Image
Parents recommendPopular with kids
Shyamalan's found-footage spooker has teens in peril.
  • PG-13
  • 2015
  • 94 minutes

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 14 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 60 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Teens learn to overcome past fears to deal with current situations. They sometimes work together but at other times are forced to split up.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The main characters are teens (13 and 15) who try their best to survive a bad situation; they're brave, but their situation isn't one anyone would emulate. The adults in the story aren't particularly admirable.


Dead bodies, one hanged. Elderly man killed in a shocking way. Some blood. Spooky images, spooky dialogue, and jump scares. Stabbing with a mirror shard. Teens in jeopardy. Vomiting and poop. A man briefly assaults another man. Rifle briefly shown.


Minor innuendo involving 13-year-old boy who imagines himself a ladykiller. Nana's naked bottom is shown twice.


"F--k" is used once. Other words include "s--t," "ass," "ho," "bitch," "goddamn," "hell," "douche," and possibly "a--hole." Middle finger gesture.


Skype is used as part of the plot. Sony laptop shown. A Yahtzee! game, with references to toy companies Hasbro and Milton Bradley.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Adults occasionally smoke cigarettes. A boy mimes "pot smoking" with his fingers.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Visit is a found-footage horror movie from director M. Night Shyamalan. There are plenty of spooky images, sounds, and dialogue, as well as jump scares and a small amount of blood and gore. Viewers see dead bodies (including one killed in a rather shocking way), and two teens, 13 and 15, are frequently in peril. The 13-year-old boy fancies himself a ladykiller, which leads to some minor innuendo, and the "Nana" character's naked bottom is shown a couple of times. Language includes a use of "f--k," plus "s--t," "bitch," and more, most frequently spoken by the 13-year-old. Adult characters infrequently smoke cigarettes, and there's a very brief, mimed reference to smoking pot. Shyamalan is a filmmaker whom horror hounds love to hate, but this movie could be a comeback that fans will want to see.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byMother of Aliens July 8, 2019

Not for under 15s!

My son (13) wanted to watch his first scary movie. Based on the reviews here - rated a 13 - we chose this film. Luckily he got bored early on and didn't wa... Continue reading
Adult Written byKanemori July 6, 2018

Now that's a horror movie.

Horror is a genre I abandoned a long long time ago. As far as I was concerned, nobody knew how to make a good horror movie. I was sick of seeing idiotic,drug-ad... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byTIMOTbb September 11, 2015

THE visit...

I think that even though there is one " f**k", it's still a funny and bit scary movie...enjoyable, and memorable.
Teen, 14 years old Written byLizzy Lizard September 12, 2015

Don't Waste Your Time

The Visit is a horror movie starring two kids and following them as they visit their grandparents, whom they have not previously met. Things start to go horribl... Continue reading

What's the story?

Thirteen-year-old Tyler (Ed Oxenbould) and 15-year-old Becca (Olivia DeJonge) agree to spend a week with their grandparents while encouraging their mom (Kathryn Hahn) to take a vacation with her boyfriend. The kids have never met their grandparents, "Nana" (Deanna Dunagan) and "Pop Pop" (Peter McRobbie), at least partly because when their mother left home 15 years earlier, something terrible apparently happened. At first things seem fine, but then Nana and Pop Pop start behaving strangely. Even if it can all be explained -- Nana gets "sundown" syndrome, and Pop Pop requires adult diapers -- it doesn't quite ease the feeling that something's wrong. Meanwhile, Becca documents their visit on video, hoping to capture something that explains it all.

Is it any good?

After several perplexing misfires, writer/director M. Night Shyamalan has scaled back, gone for a lower budget and a lighter tone, and emerged with his most effective movie in over a decade. THE VISIT begins interestingly; the potentially creepy moments can be easily explained away and even laughed off, but the director still manages to create a subtle, creeping dread that steadily builds toward the climax.

Shyamalan uses the found-footage concept with more creativity than most other filmmakers, displaying his usual intriguing grasp of three-dimensional space, as well as empty space. The characters themselves are even aware of certain cinematic theories that could make their "documentary" more interesting. They're refreshingly intelligent and self-aware, and they never blunder stupidly into any situation. If the movie has a drawback, it's that fans will be looking hard for clues to one of Shyamalan's big "twists." As to what it is, or whether there is one, we're not saying.

Talk to your kids about ...

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love scares

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