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The Dark Crystal Review

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 7+

A fantastic, but more intense Muppet adventure.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie is quite dark. This Henson puppet creature feature is no Muppets Take Manhattan. Instead, it's a dangerous otherworld where dark forces have taken over and human-like beings called gelflings are rounded up, strapped to chairs with big needles, and drained of their "essence" for decrepit, dinosaur-like skeksis (pretty scary creatures, but also big buffoons). This movie isn't for everyone, and surely not for sensitive little ones under 7, but for the right kid just getting into fantasy books, this will rock their world.

  • Families can talk about how Jen accomplished his goals with the help of others, including Kira. How hard or easy is it for each family member to accept help? What would they have done in Jen's place?
  • How is this story a hero's journey? What other stories follow the same formula?

The good stuff
  • message true3

    Messages: The story encourages children to pursue their dreams despite obstacles. The skeksis sure are sloppy eaters.

  • rolemodels true3

    Role models: Kira is shown as a strong female character. Jen is a selfless hero.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence and scariness: Fighting and occasional killing, mainly among bony nonhumans; sweet little gelflings are threatened repeatedly with death and/or zombification. Monster attacks and menace in abundance. The evil skeksis strap down benign "pod people" and turn them into zombie slaves.

  • sex false1

    Sexy stuff: A romance develops between Jen and Kira, but it's treated innocently.

  • language false0

    Language: Not an issue

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not an issue