What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Steven Spielberg's classic has some scenes of mild peril that may be too intense for younger children. For example, E.T. looks like he has died in one scene. There is brief but strong language by today's standards for a PG movie (like"bitch" and "s--t"). E.T. contains one of the most memorable product placements ever, Reese's Pieces, as well as a scene in which Elliott feels slightly drunk, because E.T. has indulged in a beer. Families should also be aware of the fact that the movie was criticized for having a complete absence of non-white characters.
- Families can talk about the way that the adults and the kids in the movie see things differently and have a hard time understanding each other's perspective. Why do Elliott and his siblings understand E.T. in a way the adults in the movie can't?
- How does the movie portray parent-child relationships? Could Elliott have talked to his mother about E.T.?
- Compare E.T. to other movies featuring aliens. Why are aliens usually scary and dangerous rather than peaceful?