Australian Council on Children and the Media

Captain Marvel

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Not recommended under 13, parental guidance recommended 13 to 15 (action violence, supernatural themes).

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Captain Marvel
  • a review of Captain Marvel completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 14 March 2019.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 13 Not recommended due to action violence, supernatural themes, mild coarse language, and frightening scenes.
Children aged 13–15 Parental guidance recommended due to action violence, supernatural themes, and frightening scenes
Children over the age of 15 Ok 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: Captain Marvel
Classification: M
Consumer advice lines: Action violence.
Length 124 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Vers (Brie Larson), an extra-terrestrial Kree soldier from the planet Hala, is thrown into the middle of an interplanetary war between the Kree, and the shapeshifting Skrulls. After escaping capture from the Skrull leader, Talos (Ben Mendelsohn), Vers finds herself trapped on planet Earth in the year 1995.  As she battles the invading Skrulls, she begins to realise that the ‘dreams’ she has been having are in fact flashbacks from another life back on Earth – life as U.S Air Force pilot, Carol Danvers.  With the help of Shield agent, Nick Fury (Samuel L Jackson), Vers tries to uncover what the Skrull are looking for and how to stop them, all the while trying to control her growing powers and find the key to unlocking her past. 

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.

Responsibility; empowerment; sexism against women.

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 some violence in this movie including:

  • Hand-to-hand combat sequences throughout the film. Main characters tend to appear relatively unhurt, despite the intensity of the fighting.
  • Laser guns and normal guns are used against characters throughout the film. Sometimes with fatal results.
  • Frequent battle and fight sequences. For example, characters are thrown around, beaten, shot, etc.

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.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children under the age of five, including the following:

  • The Skrull aliens shapeshift into other people. These transformations may disturb young children.
  • The head of a dead Skrull alien is shown in close up, with purple blood dripping from its nose and mouth. This may be quite disturbing for young children.
  • An autopsy is performed on a dead Skrull alien. This is not particularly graphic, but entrails are shown.
  • An alien cat produces giant, octopus-like tentacles from its mouth and eats several soldiers. This is not graphic but may frighten young children.

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.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes and scary visual images, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged five to eight, including the following:

  • A young girl crashes her go kart after driving too fast. She is covered in scratches and blood but appears to be ok.
  • Nick Fury is involved in a car crash, he is bleeds from a cut above his eye.
  • Nick Fury’s eye is badly scratched by a cat.

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.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged eight to thirteen, including the following:

  • Skrull alien children are threatened with laser guns but none are hurt.

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.

  • Nothing of concern

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in this movie:

  • Blockbuster Video
  • RadioShack
  • AT&T
  • Game Boy
  • Sony computer
  • Converse shoes
  • Uno
  • Ford car
  • Guinness beer
  • Budweiser beer
  • Miller beer
  • Michelob beer

Sexual references

There are some sexual references in this movie, including:

  • Nick Fury looks under a sheet covering a dead alien’s pelvic region, to see whether it has genitals.
  • A male character makes a suggestive joke regarding the reason it is called a ‘cockpit’.

Nudity and sexual activity

  • Nothing of concern

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in this movie, including:

  • While no obvious drinking of alcohol occurs, characters are seen hanging out in a bar.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Shit
  • Ass
  • Hell
  • ‘Mother Flerken’ (could be easily misheard as ‘mother fucker’).

In a nutshell

Captain Marvel is the action-packed origin story of the half-human, half-alien superhero, Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers.  With strong performances and visuals, this story of female empowerment is an exciting watch for both teens and adults alike.  

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

  • Responsibility.
  • Thinking for oneself.
  • Not passing judgement based on the beliefs of others.

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

  • Sexism toward women: this is a central theme of the film.
  • Stealing: Carol steals a motorbike from a man who was degrading and sexist toward her but the context makes the stealing appear justified.

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