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Anastasia Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    Anastasia has the Disney house style down cold, yet the magic is missing. Perhaps that's because the story's somber emotional hook--Anastasia's thwarted desire for home--is asserted rather than dramatized.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    USA Today Susan Wloszczyna

    Flawed but not fatally, this ambitious epic's strength lies not just with its haunting melodies, pretty pictures, star voices and kid-friendly sidekicks - the usual shtick that makes Disney tick. [14 Nov 1997, p.D6]

  • 88

    out of 100

    ReelViews James Berardinelli

    Easily the best non-Disney animated movie in recent memory, and it is good enough to rival such titles as “The Lion King” and “Aladdin.”

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  • 88

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    Picks and chooses cleverly, skipping blithely past the entire Russian Revolution but lingering on mad monks, green goblins, storms at sea, train wrecks and youthful romance.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 6+

Beautiful, not factual depiction of missing Russian duchess.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Anatasia is a very romantic, fun, animated fairy tale about a long-lost princess and her quest to find her family and rightful place in history, but it's intercut with scenes in which the evil Rasputin attempts to kill the young heroine. Thus, Anastasia and her helpmates are often in great danger (i.e., a runaway train, a fall into a raging sea). In many of the villain-centered scenes (which young or very sensitive kids might find scary) Rasputin's body comes apart and he's surrounded by green bats, dark music, and crashing noise.

  • Families can talk about how Anastasia (as depicted in this film) compares with other royal film characters, such as Princess Fiona of Shrek, and Sleeping Beauty's Princess Aurora.
  • How do you feel about the scary parts of Anastasia? Does the funny bat character Bartok help make the scenes with evil Rasputin easier to watch?
  • Families can also use this film as a springboard into further research about the real Anastasia and Russian history.

The good stuff
  • educationalvalue true2

    Educational value: Beautiful animation depicts simple sights, sounds, and culture of Europe in the early 20th century. The movie shows the geographical connection between Paris and Moscow, as well. Though based on overthrown Romanov royalty at the time of the Russian Revolution, this tale of Anastasia is a fairy tale rather than factual.  

  • message true3

    Messages: Fairy tales can come true. Goodness and perseverance are rewarded. Evil is destroyed by courage, honesty, and doing the right thing. Life is full of choices; make good ones and never give up hope.

  • rolemodels true4

    Role models: Anastasia is a thoroughly modern, courageous role model for girls. She's feisty, honest, stands up for herself at all costs, and is effective even in the most dangerous of physical pursuits. Dimitri, the young hero, is her equal and they work together to achieve their goals. Though Dimitri is not 100 percent honest early on, his true goodness and loyalty surface by the finale. 

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence and scariness: Anastasia faces a powerful enemy (often appearing as a rotting corpse) who has placed a mighty curse on her and her family. Cartoon danger in several sequences: the fiery destruction of a castle and its surroundings; a runaway train on fire, as it heads for a crumbling bridge; the heroine sleepwalking on a ship in torrential rains, precariously in danger of being thrown into the sea. After a scary attack, Anastasia believes Dimitri is dead, but he awakens almost immediately. In one scene the young princess slaps her "prince charming" in anger. 

  • sex false0

    Sexy stuff: A young woman and a young man fall in love over the course of the film, kiss at the end.

  • language false0

    Language: Not an issue

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not an issue