Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance: Playing for Keeps and The Dark Knight Rises

Check out our rundown of what is (and isn't) kid-friendly this week.

by | December 7, 2012 | Comments


This week in new family films, we’ve got a sports flick, a superhero blockbuster, and a fantasy film. The week’s lone wide release in theaters is Playing for Keeps, starring Gerard Butler as a desirable soccer coach. On DVD, we’ve got The Dark Knight Rises, starring Christian Bale as the Caped Crusader, and The Odd Life of Timothy Green, a modern fairy tale about a mysterious boy. Read on to find out what’s appropriate for family viewing.

In Theaters This Week:

Playing for Keeps


What’s it about? Gerard Butler stars as a washed-up soccer star who tries to bond with his son by coaching his junior league soccer team; soon, the other players’ moms are looking to score with the coach.

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG-13 for “for some sexual situations, language and a brief intense image.” Despite a sports angle, it’s mostly about a divorced dad hitting the dating scene, which will probably have limited appeal for kids and teens.

Is it any good? The critics say Playing for Keeps is largely a missed opportunity; its talented cast is squandered on a mediocre script.

New On DVD:

The Dark Knight Rises


What’s it about? With Batman (Christian Bale) in self-imposed exile, a couple of costumed criminals — cat burglar Selina Kyle and the muscle-bound terrorist Bane (Tom Hardy) have run wild in Gotham City.

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG-13 for “intense sequences of violence and action, some sensuality and language.” The Dark Knight Rises is far too dark and violent for small children: Bane is straight out of your kids’ nightmares, and the movie is filled with fighting, death, and destruction.

Is it any good? The Dark Knight Rises is a rousing and emotionally satisfying conclusion to Christopher Nolan’s exemplary Batman trilogy that features fine performances, visceral thrills, and stunning visuals.

The Odd Life of Timothy Green


What’s it about? Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton star as a childless couple that is visited one stormy night by a lad with leaves on his legs.

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG for “for mild thematic elements and brief language.” Younger viewers will probably find it to be both dark and sad, if these kids are any indication.

Is it any good? Critics found The Odd Life of Timothy Green to be a well-meaning but schmaltzy and thinly scripted fantasy.

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