A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show intends to entertain rather than to educate.
Ronja is the center of a tight-knit family and extended community of loved ones, even if they are thieves by trade. It creates a conundrum, letting viewers decide whether the characters are protagonists because of the morals they show among themselves or antagonists because of how they treat others. Strong themes of friendship and loyalty, and the idea that breaking rules for the right reason can be a good thing. Some potty humor, as when a teen holds himself because he has to use the restroom.
Positive Role Models
Ronja's mother is her steady guide, an intelligent woman who guides her daughter's knowledge and empathy and encourages her to be curious about the world. She's also the uncelebrated heroine among the more flamboyant men, quietly keeping them on task and solving problems that arise. Mattis is childlike in his enthusiasm and in how he relates to his fort mates, but he loves his daughter fiercely and is protective of his extended family. Ronja and Birk are great examples of how friendship can overcome differences.
Violence & Scariness
Robbers descend on travelers and intimidate them into turning over their belongings, but the exchanges are more confrontational than violent. Contentious relationships between Mattis and the leader of a rival robber band. Much yelling and arguing and some threatening talk such as "I will drop you from this world!" Some perilous moments and scares, especially during Ronja's visits to the forest.
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Products & Purchases
This series is based on a book of the same name by Astrid Lindgren.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Ronja, the Robber's Daughter is an anime fantasy series based on the book by Astrid Lindgren and presented by the studio behind Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle. Ronja's extended-family members are thieves by trade, but they're not unlikable as a result. Instead, being raised in this unique community gives this unabashed girl a decisive sense of right and wrong and a strong value set that encourages her to trust her own instincts in choosing her path. There's little violence to the skirmishes that erupt between the robbers and their victims -- and among themselves -- but young kids may find some of the fantasy creatures that live in the surrounding areas scary, and there are infrequent uses of "hell." Strong themes of friendship (including a friendship that breaks the rules but fulfills Ronja and Birk) and loyalty exist, as does the value of being inquisitive and adventurous. This beautiful, musical anime series is an excellent pick for families with older kids and tweens because of its multigenerational appeal.
Is It Any Good?
Narrated by Gillian Anderson, this internationally celebrated series is beautifully crafted around an exceptional young female character in Ronja. Though the details of her upbringing and family life among a band of robbers seem contradictory to the principled, empathetic girl she becomes, you quickly forget about the characters' questionable livelihood and focus instead on the image they create of family, community, and loyalty. As the beneficiary of her environment, Ronja emerges as an expressive, opinionated girl willing to stick out her neck for what she believes is right, even when it challenges her elders' beliefs.
Ronja, the Robber's Daughter is a methodical, almost relaxing series to watch because of the patient pace of the story, the sweeping scenery, and the stirring music that bridges dialogue. There's nothing rushed about this tale, allowing you to settle in and fully appreciate the expert animation and vivid storytelling that bring this popular book to life.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.