Australian Council on Children and the Media

Daddy's Home

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Short takes

Not recommended for under 15; suitable for 15 and over (violence, crude humour and adult themes).

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Daddy's Home
  • a review of Daddy's Home completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 28 December 2015.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children Under 15 Not recommended
Children 15 and over Suitable for this age group

About the movie

This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines.

Name of movie: Daddy's Home
Classification: PG
Consumer advice lines: Mild crude humour, sexual references and coarse language.
Length 92 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Daddy’s Home is a slapstick comedy which follows Brad (Will Ferrell), a modest radio executive who strives to become the best step-father to his wife Sarah’s (Linda Cardellini) two young children, Dylan (Owen Vaccaro) and Megan (Scarlett Estevez). Despite the two kids not being very accepting of him, Brad thoroughly enjoys being a stepfather, and dedicates considerable time to volunteering at the children’s school, church and scout programs.

 

The children’s biological father Dusty (Mark Wahlberg) calls one day and discovers that his ex-partner has remarried, and proceeds to catch a flight over to meet the new man in his kids’ lives. Dusty is young, attractive and rides a motorcycle – and represents everything that Brad is not. Although the two men are polite to each other at first, Brad grows increasingly insecure and feels as though he cannot compete with Dusty.

Themesinfo

Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.

Families; Blended Families; Step-parents; Friendship

Use of violenceinfo

Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.

Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.

There is considerable slapstick-style violence within the film, including:

  • Brad is involved in a motorcycle accident, where he ends up stuck in the wall of his house. He is not badly injured, however.
  • A skateboarding trick goes wrong and a character is injured, falling off the skateboard and grazing his skin. Several people are also injured whilst watching a game of basketball – a man throws two balls that accidentally hit and injure a cheerleader, as well as a boy in a wheelchair.
  • At a school dance, several male characters push and shove each other.
  • A female bullies Dylan throughout the film, and he eventually hits her.
  • A man is made infertile because an x-ray machine is knocked out of place during a visit to the dentist, and irradiates his groin accidentally.

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

None of concern

Aged five to eightinfo

Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.

None of concern

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.

None of concern

Over thirteeninfo

Children over the age of thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic physical harm or threats, molestation or sexual assault and / or threats from aliens or the occult.

None of concern

Product placement

There is some product placement, including:

  • Apple products are frequently shown.

Sexual references

There are considerable sexual references, including:

  • There are many jokes regarding Dusty’s penis and scrotum size, as well as euphemistic references to the ‘size of a man’s sword’.

 

Nudity and sexual activity

There is mild nudity, including:

  • There is a scene where a doctor asks two men to undress, so that a woman can identify which man is healthier based on the appearance of their genitalia.

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in the film, including:

  • Several adults are seen to be drinking alcohol throughout the film. One adult drinks to the point of intoxication, where he proceeds to make inappropriate comments and is subsequently thrown out of a sports venue. 

Coarse language

There is considerable coarse language in the film, including:

  • Insults such as ‘bitch’, ‘asshole’, ‘shithead’, etc.
  • Exclamations such as ‘shit’ and ‘goddammit’ are used, as well as ‘Jesus Christ’.

In a nutshell

Daddy’s Home is a comedy that explores issues of blended families and step-parenting. The movie highlights the insecurities that new parents or step-parents can face in regards to the responsibilities of having children, as well as the daunting nature of competing with an existing parent. However, it demonstrates that it is possible for parents and step-parents to work together, as well as learn from one another. The movie highlights that there is no single best way to parent, and that having decent motivations and always trying your hardest to do the right thing are the main qualities that define good parenting.

 

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • The importance of family members getting along and supporting one another, despite potential differences and disagreements.
  • The need to acknowledge and deal with issues when they come up, as opposed to ignoring things – honest communication is presented as much healthier for a relationship than passive aggression.
  • Good parents come in different forms, but oftentimes, being reliable and a good role model for children is more valuable than appearing ‘cool’ or ‘fun’.

 

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children attitudes and behaviours, and their real-life consequences, such as:

  • Issues associated with family break-down, divorce, and re-defining the relationships of individuals within a family unit.
  • The notion of what it means to be a father or parent, and the consequences/impact of different styles of parenting.
  • Whether certain behaviours are glamorised (such as riding a motorcycle), and the impact this may have upon younger viewers.

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