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The Hunchback of Notre Dame Review

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 6+

Touching Disney tale cheers on the outcasts.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Frollo is a threatening bad guy who fights with swords and ogles over the suggestively dressed gypsy Esmeralda; he sings a song of desire about her and asks for her destruction -- or possession. Naturally deformities are addressed because the main character has a hunchback. Also, since this story does take place in Notre Dame Cathedral, religious symbols, icons, and religious themes abound.

  • Families can talk about what it means to be different from the norm. Who were the gypsies?
  • Why were they considered outcasts?
  • What would it feel like to be Quasimodo?
  • What does sanctuary mean? Why do people seek sanctuary?
  • What other versions of this story do you know? Which one do you like best?

The good stuff
  • message true3

    Messages: Quasimodo and Esmeralda are both outcasts who overcome odds.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence and scariness: Prolonged battle scene features broken teeth and swordplay. Frollo's cruelty is very threatening.

  • sex false1

    Sexy stuff: Esmeralda is dressed in a revealing manner, and she's punished by a man who desires her.

  • language false0

    Language: Frollo uses threats.

  • consumerism false1

    Consumerism: Disney spin-off items for sale in stores.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false1

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Some swilling of grog during Festival of Fools scene.

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