Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance: Divergent and Muppets Most Wanted, Plus Frozen and Saving Mr. Banks

We give you what you need to know about the family-friendliness of this week's new releases.

by | March 21, 2014 | Comments

In Theaters This Week:



Divergent

42%

Rating: PG-13, for intense violence and action, thematic elements and some sensuality.

The movie version of Veronica Roth’s young adult bestseller takes place in a rigidly structured dystopian future, so naturally this means teens are going to have to battle each other for survival. It’s a crucial part of the formula. For the tweens and older who’ve read the book, the film adaptation is probably fine. They (and you) know what to expect. Shailene Woodley stars as Beatrice, or Tris, who must decide which of society’s five factions is the best for her. Once she joins the Dauntless, known for their bravery, she learns to fight, shoot, throw knives and jump from trains. But she also must defend herself from her fellow initiates, who are trying to undermine her, and face her deepest fears within elaborate simulations. A sizable body count builds up during the film’s big action sequences toward the end, but because this is PG-13, there’s very little blood.



Muppets Most Wanted

79%

Rating: PG, for some mild action.

The Muppets are back in yet another high-energy, star-studded, song-and-dance extravaganza. This time, they’re performing in major cities throughout Europe with an internationally known jewel thief, a frog named Constantine, pretending to be Kermit at the helm. There’s nothing even remotely inappropriate here. Miss Piggy is in slight danger, briefly, and the rest of the Muppets have to put themselves in peril to save her. And much of the action takes place inside a Siberian gulag (where a hilarious Tina Fey is the warden) but even that is depicted so cartoonishly, it’s never frightening. A Monsters University short precedes the feature, which is pretty darn delightful, as well.

New On DVD:



Frozen

90%

Rating: PG, for some action and mild rude humor.

You probably already have “Let It Go” playing repeatedly in your head like a psychotic episode. Now you can own Frozen on DVD and sear the song into your brain permanently. The Oscar-winning Disney animated musical has become a pop-culture phenomenon, and understandably so. It’s extremely entertaining for the whole family, especially if you have little girls in your house. Broadway veteran Idina Menzel lends her voice to the character of Elsa, a newly crowned queen who loses control and turns her idyllic kingdom to ice. Her younger sister (Kristen Bell), Princess Anna, goes on a journey with some new friends to retrieve Elsa from her self-imposed, mountaintop exile. The only vaguely scary element here is the giant snow monster Elsa creates to protect her fortress from intruders, but it’s on screen briefly and might frighten only the youngest viewers.



Saving Mr. Banks

79%

Rating: Rating: PG-13, for thematic elements including some unsettling images.

A shamelessly sentimental retelling of how charismatic Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) persuaded persnickety Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) to let him turn her beloved children’s book into a movie musical. It’s not entirely accurate from a historical perspective, but it’s certainly suitable and sufficiently cheery fare, full of upbeat tunes and cathartic tears. The only reason I can imagine for the PG-13 rating is that Saving Mr. Banks includes some flashbacks to Travers’ childhood with a father (Colin Farrell) whose alcoholism destroyed him. Showing your kids the actual Mary Poppins movie might be a better call.

Tag Cloud

Musicals Epix TCA 2017 Winners Summer TV Land animated composers GIFs hispanic Disney Channel Crunchyroll Comic Book Pet Sematary tv talk Action elevated horror independent social media unscripted comiccon dc DC Comics dceu Oscars BBC serial killer transformers canceled TV shows CNN Reality Competition Year in Review CW Seed discovery LGBTQ DC streaming service blockbuster Podcast Showtime Cosplay Music AMC Trailer Musical WarnerMedia comics Marvel TV renewals VICE kids Pirates Turner justice league 24 frames talk show Disney+ Disney Plus Walt Disney Pictures Certified Fresh Mindy Kaling Rom-Com boxoffice HBO batman Martial Arts San Diego Comic-Con PaleyFest USA indie 2020 45 Ellie Kemper spider-man E3 NYCC Star Wars Schedule green book CBS thriller Spike Apple TV Plus USA Network Turner Classic Movies FXX screen actors guild award winner Emmys Shondaland Bravo 2015 Drama disaster Heroines TNT Rocketman vampires Britbox Ovation Anna Paquin Hulu New York Comic Con 2018 book Binge Guide Western ABC Family Comedy YouTube spy thriller Countdown Valentine's Day Writers Guild of America Disney Plus mockumentary HBO Max video Holidays Comedy Central war ratings TCA Interview stand-up comedy Pop cars Spectrum Originals Spring TV Brie Larson south america Animation APB Freeform sitcom comic Rock Hallmark cops Classic Film cancelled television Hallmark Christmas movies Teen Film biography name the review Chilling Adventures of Sabrina IFC Creative Arts Emmys supernatural FX Marvel Television cats Pixar A&E cancelled TV shows Vudu Lionsgate Tomatazos Tarantino cooking Star Trek Rocky Chernobyl Super Bowl series TruTV zombie DGA RT History cancelled TV series TLC anthology golden globes science fiction ABC psychological thriller Extras toy story Disney streaming service Food Network Marathons nature ESPN screenings cancelled versus 21st Century Fox Mudbound Film Festival Pride Month television Apple TV+ American Society of Cinematographers DirecTV Thanksgiving IFC Films See It Skip It X-Men crime drama Starz Acorn TV historical drama Amazon Prime Logo First Reviews Warner Bros. Tumblr zero dark thirty FOX Trivia Black Mirror facebook Cannes renewed TV shows what to watch CMT History 2019 werewolf President Lifetime dramedy travel Grammys VH1 DC Universe christmas movies Captain marvel Netflix Christmas movies National Geographic 71st Emmy Awards teaser Syfy Infographic Christmas Nickelodeon ghosts MSNBC richard e. Grant children's TV aliens Comics on TV Apple Dark Horse Comics Emmy Nominations doctor who halloween miniseries Biopics Set visit RT21 Peacock slashers 20th Century Fox LGBT revenge Television Academy Avengers MTV period drama game show sequel Polls and Games YouTube Premium free movies Character Guide sports Women's History Month Disney Sneak Peek Arrowverse The Purge Best and Worst Winter TV The Walking Dead Horror Sony Pictures Mary Poppins Returns Netflix El Rey Reality casting Cartoon Network The Witch foreign political drama NBC Trophy Talk Stephen King ITV natural history The CW Fantasy Paramount Network Country BBC America true crime Masterpiece Nominations SXSW The Arrangement crime mutant Elton John festivals Quiz Awards Calendar Holiday GLAAD Fall TV cartoon Mystery MCU Opinion 007 crossover Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt romance psycho YA crime thriller breaking bad Song of Ice and Fire Lifetime Christmas movies adaptation strong female leads anime Superheroe singing competition joker Election TBS politics witnail jamie lee curtis Universal GoT based on movie Crackle docudrama spinoff Adult Swim dragons romantic comedy Fox News TCM cults hist spanish language Nat Geo 2016 Family Toys Columbia Pictures Video Games technology BET Superheroes blaxploitation zombies cinemax Photos binge Endgame Ghostbusters game of thrones SDCC WGN Kids & Family latino finale Amazon Prime Video police drama Mary poppins OWN Mary Tyler Moore medical drama space theme song A24 streaming SundanceTV Sundance YouTube Red Premiere Dates E! 2017 TIFF sag awards Box Office canceled adventure Sci-Fi diversity Shudder Lucasfilm TV robots First Look Red Carpet Sundance Now Amazon Paramount Esquire Awards Tour quibi PBS movies Marvel Studios harry potter CBS All Access rotten movies we love spain Watching Series