Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance: Insurgent, Penguins of Madagascar, and More

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

by | March 20, 2015 | Comments



Insurgent

28%

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

The sequel to last year’s Divergent might be even more violent and intense than its predecessor. It’s also oppressively dour. But because the film carries a PG-13 rating — to make it accessible to the tweens and young teens who also were the target audience for the YA novel source material — there’s minimal bloodshed accompanying the massive gunfire. This time, the rebellious Tris (Shailene Woodley) and her boyfriend, Four (Theo James), are hiding out with some other folks, trying to figure out how best to take down the totalitarian dictator Jeanine (Kate Winslet). But Jeanine is after Tris, too, to put her through a series of simulations which will open a magical box that contains an important message, or something. This sometimes means Tris must endure harrowing imagery and fight dangerous battles. In real life, she and Four also have sex, but we don’t really see anything; the act is implied through kissing and naked backs. If your kids have seen the first film, they’re in for a lot of the same here.

New On DVD:



Penguins of Madagascar

73%

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

The playful penguins who stole every scene in the Madagascar series have gotten a movie of their own. Part origin story and part spin-off, it explains how Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private became globetrotting super spies and it follows them on an all-new adventure. John Malkovich lends his rich voice to the shape-shifting bad guy they’re after: an angry octopus who’s pretending to be a mad scientist. He kidnaps penguins from zoos and aquariums around the world with plans to inject them with a serum that will turn them into hideous versions of themselves. He hopes they’ll seem less appealing to the masses, but they actually become more silly than frightening. The penguins end up in several dangerous situations but they always find a way to escape. There’s a lot of silly spanking among the animals as well as some fart jokes and flatulence puns, but it’s the kind of harmless, puerile humor that routinely cracks kids up. Nothing here is shocking or inappropriate. This is totally suitable for all ages, although a lot of the pop-culture gags are just for us grown-ups.



Annie

27%

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

This movie is terrible. But if it’s the only family-friendly film available for rental… well, it’s still terrible. It’s a modern-day version of the enduring stage musical, which has been moved from the Great Depression to present day Manhattan. This time, the plucky orphan Annie (Quvenzhane Wallis) moves in with a billionaire cell-phone mogul (Jamie Foxx) and melts his heart… in song! The celebration of materialism is seriously amped up here, which is sort of depressing. Annie enjoys a helicopter ride around New York City and hands out free phones to her foster-kid friends. Cameron Diaz is rather shrill and inept as Miss Hannigan but she’s not as intimidating as she’s been in previous versions; she’s more pathetic than anything else. And Annie briefly finds herself in danger when she goes off with a couple who pretend to be her birth parents, but she’s not hurt in any way. Suitable for all ages.



Exodus: Gods and Kings

31%

Rating: PG, for violence including battle sequences and intense images.

Mature tweens and older will probably be fine watching this massive biblical epic from director Ridley Scott, which makes his Oscar-winning Gladiator look like a tiny indie by comparison. With the use of massive visual effects, Scott tells the Old Testament story of Moses leading hundreds of thousands of Hebrew slaves out of Egypt to freedom. That means plagues — lots and lots of plagues — from frogs to locusts to boils. (The boils are especially gross.) And because everything has gotten so chaotic and overpopulated under the reign of the inept Ramses (Joel Edgerton), slaves are thrown into enormous fires to thin out the city. There are also several elaborate battle scenes, perilous chariot chases and a pummeling wall of water once Moses (Christian Bale) has finished parting the Red Sea. And be warned: besides the violence and the subject matter, the film runs nearly two and a half hours, which might be quite a slog for younger viewers.

Tag Cloud

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