Common Sense Media says

Excellent, gorgeous drama with uplifting messages.

Users say

(out of 25 reviews)
age 8+
Review this title!
Teen, 16 years old Written bykitsaru April 9, 2008

This was an excellent movie. It is definitely an enjoyable show!

This was one of the best movies I have seen for a long time. It wasn't a "grown-up" movie, and it wasn't a kiddie show. I think that it was a great movie, definately a break from the usual tired old shows, there were no "bad guys". The grandfather wasn't evil in not letting her be chief, he was just very traditional. This is a very nice change from the usual one-sided baddies in many movies. Over all, I found this movie to be a wonderful movie.
Educator and Parent of a 9 and 14 year old Written bylioness57 April 9, 2008

An absolutely beautiful movie

I checked out the Common Sense Media notes before I took my 9 year old and 5 year old to the movie. I was prepared for the opening scene with a baby and mom dying in childbirth (which happens in the opening scene) and kept checking my 5 year-old's face - it all happened so fast with alot of montage photography that it went over his head. From that point on, Whale Rider is one of the most beautiful and moving films that I have seen all year. It makes you laugh and cry. The characters are wonderful, the cinematography extraordinary. We had long discussions with my daughter afterward about the struggle to preserve native cultures and the abiilty of girls to be leaders, and the importance of pursuing your dreams even in the face of opposition - all were themes of the movie. I really can't recommend this highly enough.
Teen, 14 years old Written bystar April 9, 2008

A movie that is very uniuq with a great story.

Whale Rider is not only a great picture it has a great message two. Should be rated PG-13 but not a very intense PG-13.
Kid, 12 years old December 22, 2013

A little boring

At one part a man asks the boys to, "Hold your d*cks." That's basically it.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much sex
Parent Written byspiritdancer June 18, 2010

A great family film.

Just watched Whale Rider for the tenth time. I just love this movie. It really inspires me, and makes me really want to make spiritual movies like that. There is one drug reference but it's so hidden that smaller kids won't notice. The only other thing is a scene where an 11 year old is smoking. But the main character deals with this and tells him he should not be smoking. For girls it's a great film about strength and courage and being true to yourself no matter what. Spiritually, it shows that there is more to life than the physical. It's just a really good film over all. Very inspiring. I've watched it many times and I am still not tired of it. I real work of art. This is the kind of film you can keep in your family collection and watch over and over again.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 14 years old Written bylook-it's-amey September 11, 2012

Watched it for School.

We did a film study on Whale Rider, and to be honest, I found it a little boring. I found it hard to follow, but I do admit I did learn something. It has a positive message, and some good role models. Whale Rider deals with sexist people, feminism (In a good way) and family feuds. It also has one use of d*ck So I would recommend this, if you can be bothered, if you want a heart-warming drama.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 9 years old June 23, 2011

Great movie!

Whale Rider is a great movie, but it is sad.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Educator and Parent of a 1, 5, and 5 year old Written byKira M. November 18, 2016
My kids are still too young for this movie, I can't wait to show it to them one day! Makes me cry every time, both tears of sadness and of joy. Such a great movie with an amazing girl-power message.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 10 years old June 16, 2014
a good story but very very sad and insense
What other families should know
Great role models
Educator and Parent of a 12 year old Written bykkurcisk February 15, 2012

Leadership Inspiration for Girls

This wonderful film is great film for family viewing, and I particularly love the positive messages for girls. Kids need to be old enough to pay attention through a movie with some subtitles. The story is based on Maori folk traditions, shot on location in New Zealand. Most of the cast are local people, not professional actors. The resulting story is inspiring on a number of fronts: first, the story itself is one of hope and redemption; also, the success of a small-budget film with a mostly unknown cast is inspiring in a completely different way.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 9 and 14 year old Written bycookbooknic April 15, 2011

good for 9+ when in the mood to think

slow-moving but thought provoking - a very positive experience. Kids happily stuck with it through slower, sadder patches to see the ending.
What other families should know
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Great messages
Parent of a 10 year old Written bytammy1970 October 17, 2010

Perfect movie for the whole family

What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 11 years old October 17, 2010

Perfect for tweens!

I think that this movie sends a message to be strong and do what is right no matter what happens.
What other families should know
Great role models
Parent of a 10 year old Written byzally July 17, 2010

heartfelt exploration of other cultures and universal humanity

One of our all time favourites. Watch it
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 16 years old Written byJacrio May 11, 2009
Parent of a 7 and 8 year old Written byqtnn January 11, 2009
Adult Written byPanya April 9, 2008

...

I didn't like the actual whale-riding part, but the rest was really great. Good themes to discuss with tweens.
Teen, 13 years old Written byNatty April 9, 2008

This was an okay movie, It was scary at the end!

It was not very easy to understand, and the accents were hard to understand. It was a little slow at the beginning of he movie but the end was very exciting but a little scary. It was sort of hard to understand the spiritual stuff but it was interesting. It was very suspensful at the end, and Whale Rider is a pretty good movie!
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008

A must watch for tweens.

Teen, 13 years old Written byCSM Screen Name... April 9, 2008

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