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James and the Giant Peach Review

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 7+

Fabulous adaptation of Roald Dahl's classic book.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that in this adaptation of Roald Dahl's classic story young James both loses his parents and is forced to live as a servant to abusive relatives. James risks his life in a trip across the ocean and there's one particularly scary encounter with a toothy shark. The video may inspire kids to build little hot air balloons with candles, as James does, and it may encourage bug-phobic kids to become even more enamored of their insect friends.

  • Families can talk about parents or family members who have left a child's life through death or divorce, and how the film makes them feel.
  • How do we remember the ones we've lost? How does James find a family of friends that provide for him the love he doesn't get from his aunts?
  • What role does imagination play in James's story? How did imagination make him feel better? How do you use your imagination?

The good stuff
  • educationalvalue true1

    Educational value: May inspire kids to pick up the classic book that nspired this movie.

  • message true1

    Messages: Positive messages include facing your fears and finding people who love you for you.

  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: James uses his imagination to survive scary situations. He's brave and courageous in the face of great difficulties.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence and scariness: Scary situations in which James' parents die; James' aunts threaten to beat him. Some frightening characters -- including a many-toothed shark. Many perilous scenes where key characters are almost killed.

  • sex false0

    Sexy stuff: Flirtation between the Centipede and the Spider.

  • language false0

    Language: Not applicable

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not applicable