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What parents should know about 'Kong: Skull Island'

Posted March 11

THE MOVIE THEATER — From the moment I saw the “Kong: Skull Island” preview, I was at once excited and reluctant to see it. Excited because it just looked cool, reluctant because it's all been done before and how good could it really be?

Well, fortunately and unfortunately, both of my initial reactions had some merit, but in the end, I couldn't get enough. This movie somehow defied the odds and was very entertaining, while not being exactly what you would think. If you want to read a full review on the movie, check out John Clyde's article.

My job today is to tell you why or why not you should take your children or yourself to “Kong: Skull Island” from a content perspective.

Violence/gore

It is safe to say in a movie all about a giant angry gorilla, there will be a fair amount of violence. “Kong: Skull Island” did not skimp in the violence department. After about the first 15 minutes of the film, the violence begins to ramp up and does not let off until the very end of the movie.

The type of violence I am talking about here is mostly giant animal on human violence with Kong and friends essentially taking out most of a scientific/military expedition in a variety of creative ways. From smashing a palm tree through the windshield of a helicopter to terrifying pterodactyl-type birds ripping a man limb from limb, it is not a stretch to say some of the younger or more sensitive viewers may have a hard time with this.

This movie is somewhat gory as well, earning its full PG-13 rating. There is a fair amount of blood shown in the film and it comes at surprising times. There is not a lot of graphic gore, however— that is left more to the imagination than what is actually shown on screen. But there is enough to imagine that it might bother some people.

Language

Earning its PG-13 rating in the language department was not a stretch for this movie. There are plenty of your "level 2" type swear words and a few level 1 words scattered throughout. I counted the F-word 1 ¾ times by the time the film was done.

As far as sexually inappropriate language, there wasn’t any to speak of.

Sexiness

This movie did not focus any attention on things of a sexual nature. Instead, it concentrated on building the myth of the mighty Kong and his great physical power. If sexual content in a film is your primary concern, "Kong: Skull Island" is not going to be a problem.

Scariness

As can be imagined, there are a lot of opportunities to scare the audience with sudden unexpected experiences in a film about giant animals and insects. There are definitely more than a few creatures that could be nightmare inducing if you thought about them before you fell asleep. Mostly these monsters add to the appeal of the movie. Be aware, there are a number of jump scares throughout the movie that catch you by surprise.

Conclusion

Given the content of this film, I wouldn’t recommend it for kids under the age of 15 or 16 or for people who have a particular aversion to slightly campy acting and storylines. If you are willing to look beyond the obvious and go in expecting to be entertained, then you will probably like "Kong: Skull Island."

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