A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know there's lots of fantasy violence in this movie. The earth is destroyed by an alien race. Some characters die on screen. There are fistfights, laser gun battles, and numerous scenes of spaceship combat. The heroes are constantly in danger, and a scene in which Cale and Akima are brought aboard an enemy Drej spaceship portrays an unnerving and hostile alien environment. Five-year-old Cale is traumatically separated from his father in a scene that could disturb sensitive youngsters. The weird-looking Drej themselves may frighten very young viewers.
What's the story?
TITAN A.E. is set in the 31st century, when alien invaders have turned the Earth to charcoal and humanity is in danger of being wiped out altogether. Cast out into the universe, survivor Cale (voiced by Matt Damon) is in possession of a map to Titan, a space station created to house displaced Earthlings. Cale, his friend Korso (Bill Pullman), and pretty pilot Akima (Drew Barrymore) set out to find the Ice Planet, where the Titan is located.
Is it any good?
This animated feature is aimed at an older crowd, a fact made clear by its PG rating and less-than-sunny premise. Refreshingly, the filmmakers--notably legendary director Don Bluth --have gone out of their way to ensure that the movie is not a Disney clone. The story jettisons fairy tale magic and Broadway-style songs for elaborate high-tech imagery, fast-paced action, and a loud rock music soundtrack. On a strictly visual level, it's is a smashing success, with imaginative futuristic environments and spacecraft created with state-of-the-art computer animation.
On the down side, we never connect with the characters in an emotional way that would take the movie to the next level. Cale's transition from uncaring cynic to committed hero is predictable, and his romance with the space pilot Akima is perfunctory at best. Science fiction fans will recognize some recycled plot ideas, and even occasional lines of dialogue lifted from previous sci-fi classics. However, as the movie's primary goal is apparently to provide its target audience with an adrenaline rush every ten minutes or so, at this, it succeeds admirably.
Talk to your kids about ...
- In theaters: March 6, 2001
- On DVD or streaming: March 6, 2001
- Cast: Bill Pullman, Drew Barrymore, Matt Damon
- Director: Don Bluth
- Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Adventures, Space and Aliens
- Run time: 95 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: action violence, mild sensuality and brief language
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.