Australian Council on Children and the Media

Kubo and the Two Strings

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What age is this for?

Age
0-5
5-6
7-8
8-13
13+

Classification

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What’s it about?

This is a Japanese cartoon about a young boy Kubo who has to look after his sick Mother, and protect himself from the evil spirits of his ancestors. Kubo makes money to look after himself and his Mother by telling enchanting and exciting stories to the villagers.

One day Kubo makes the mistake of returning home after sunset. As the dark falls, the evil spirits of his mother’s sisters awake to come and capture Kubo. Kubo has to run from them and is joined by two friends, Monkey and Beetle. Together they must find a magical suit of armour that was worn by Kubo’s father when he was alive. In the end Kubo has to fight with his evil grandfather, the Moon King, so that he can remain mortal and human.

What to look out for

There are quite a lot of violent scenes in this movie including:

  • Kubo's mother is caught in a stormy sea and knocks her head against a rock, cutting it open.. Her face is scarred and her mind is damaged.
  • There are several scenes of fighting using swords, chains, blades and bows and arrows They also use martial art style kicking.
  • During a fight, Monkey is struck with a blade attached to a chain and has a deep  cut in the side of her body. This causes her to die.
  • Beetle is stabbed in the back and dies.

There are also several scary scenes, which would frighten young kids such as:

  • Objects rise up and fly around the room. Kubo possesses magical powers, which can make origami come to life.
  • The evil spirits are extremely scary characters who look like witches. They float through the air and are very threatening. They try to make Kubo come with them.
  • Kubo dives down into a lake where there is a forest of giant eyeballs. The eyeballs try to hypnotise him and drown him.
  • The Moon King transforms into a fantastic and terrifying dragon/serpent monster that terrorises Kubo and the other villagers.

Moral of the Story

The messages of the movie are the importance of family and that everyone has his or her own special story,

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