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Zathura Review Critics


Dave White Profile

… you get to be 8 years old for 100 minutes. Read full review

Other Critics provided by

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

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Mike Clark

    Tim Robbins plays the working dad, and the movie misses him once he bails out early.

    Read Full Review

  • 70

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter

    Favreau again delivers that rare beast -- a family film that even childless adults can enjoy.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    ReelViews James Berardinelli

    Will work better for younger viewers than older ones. There's not much plot to absorb and there's plenty of action, so this is the kind of spectacle that will appeal to those without long attention spans.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    It works gloriously as space opera.

    Read Full Review

  • 91

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Scott Brown

    Zathura is a rarity: a stellar fantasy that faces down childhood anxieties with feet-on-the-ground maturity.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Zathura reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 8+

Sci-fi adventure for the elementary school set.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the movie begins with typical tensions, resentments, and competitions between two brothers, aged six and 10. Their father is divorced and their teenaged sister is distracted by her interest in boys and parties. The film includes scary music, scary sound effects (crashes, explosions, alien-monster growls), and some images of space-aliens and a big robot attacking the boys that might be frightening for younger viewers. Boys use some obnoxious language ("d--k," "screwed") and violence against the aliens to save themselves.

  • Families can talk about the relationship between the two brothers: how do they learn to appreciate and take care of one another? How do Lisa or their father fit into or affect the brothers' relationship? How does the absent mother (never seen on screen, though she arrives to pick them up in a car) figure into the family tensions?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Not applicable

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence and scariness: Space ships are armed with guns and futuristic missiles, lizardish space aliens are menacing; crazed robot attacks boys; meteors and space weapons blow up the boys' house/space ship.

  • sex false0

    Sexy stuff: Teenaged sister wears a tight top in preparation for her night out; she develops a crush on a character who turns out to be her younger brother at a later age.

  • language false2

    Language: Minor language, including kids' use of "d---k," "screwed," "ass," and "bee-yatch."

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not applicable