Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

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Not suitable under 13; parental guidance to 14 (violence, scary scenes)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3
  • a review of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 9 May 2023.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 13 Not suitable due to violence, scary scenes and coarse language.
Children aged 13-14 Parental guidance recommended due to violence, scary scenes and coarse language.
Children aged 15 and over 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. Other classification advice (OC) is provided where the Australian film classification is not available.

Name of movie: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3
Classification: M
Consumer advice lines: Intense scenes of violence, science fiction themes and coarse language
Length: 150 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

The ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ have established themselves on planet Knowhere but are attacked by Adam Warlock (Will Poulter), the powerful son of the ‘Sovereign’ who are intent on destroying the Guardians. During the attack, Rocket (voice of Bradley Cooper) is seriously injured and attempts to revive him are thwarted by a ‘kill-switch’ embedded in his chest. Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) is determined to save him and so, with the other Guardians, they attempt to reach the Orgosphere. They believe that Theel (Nico Santos), a top scientist of the High Evolutionary (Chukwudi Iwuji), holds the file to override the kill switch in Rocket’s heart. The Guardians employ the help of the Ravagers to penetrate the Orgosphere, in particular Gamora (Zoe Saldana), who has no memory of being a former girlfriend of Peter.

During this attack on the Orgosphere, Rocket recalls how, as a baby racoon, he was picked by the High Evolutionary for one of his experiments to create a perfect world. His victims are subjected to painful laboratory tests that usually turn the poor creatures into giant monsters of their former selves. Rocket, while growing large, also becomes highly intelligent and a great asset to the High Evolutionary. Rocket is treated very badly, however, and he befriends his fellow inmates, an anthropomorphic Otter called Lylla (voice of Linda Cardellini), Teefs the Walrus (voice of Asim Chaudhry) and Floor the Rabbit (voice of Mikaela Hoover). Rocket eventually manages to escape from captivity and finds the Guardians, who take him in as one of their own.

Meanwhile, the Guardians manage to enter the Orgosphere and find Rocket’s file but are attacked by the guards there and barely escape with their lives. They then go to Counter-Earth to track down Theel, where they discover that Counter-Earth looks very similar to Earth but the inhabitants are humanised pigs. All is not perfect, however, which is soon very evident. Peter takes Nebula (Karen Gillan) and Groot (voice of Vin Diesel) to the High Evolutionary’s ship. They are allowed to enter but Nebula must remain outside. Drax (Dave Bautista) and Mantis (Pom Klementieff) stay with Rocket who has been brought along by Gamora. Eventually, they all board the ship where they find hordes of imprisoned children. The Guardians have a mighty task ahead of them to defeat the High Evolutionary and to free not only all of the children but also many captured animals.


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.

Sci-fi; Action Adventure; Genetic Engineering.

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 a lot of violence throughout this movie, including many battle scenes using swords, axes, electrical pulses, guns, automatic weapons, bombs, explosions, heavy punch ups etc. Some additional examples include:

  • Peter is drunk in a pub and smashes bottles onto the floor.
  • Rocket is blasted through a building and sustains a gaping wound to his chest.
  • Several small animals are individually placed inside a glass structure and subjected to a painful treatment that sees them growing huge while screaming and clawing at the glass.
  • Adam obliterates a man who disintegrates into a burning skeleton.
  • The High Evolutionary orders that Rocket and his friends are exterminated. Rocket manages to escape but Lylla, Teefs and Floor are all shot dead.
  • Adam destroys a War Pig, pulls its head off and is seen carrying it around.
  • Peter cuts the metal hard drive out of Theel’s head.
  • A final, large battle scene is played out in slow motion. Men are being thrown about and there is shooting, punching and sword fighting.

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:

  • Many alien, star wars-type creatures, with strange heads, arms, weird faces etc. Groot is a tree-like humanoid whose limbs can grow really long to attack; Nebula is blue and has a robot-type appearance; Mantis has antennas on her head.
  • Floor, the rabbit, has a metal band implanted in her head and metal, spider-type legs. Teefs has wheels attached to him to give him mobility.

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 talking dog, called Cosmo, has an electrical collar around her neck.
  • Groot, at one point, has his head cut off and he runs around on short limbs.
  • Counter-Earth has humanised creatures – pigs, rabbits and pandas dressed in clothes and living like humans.
  • Groot grows really enormous and looks terrifying.
  • One of the guards on Counter-Earth is a giant pig, carrying automatic weapons and is very scary.
  • Rocket has a near-death experience where he encounters Lylla, Teefs and Floor. They tell him it isn’t time for him to die yet.
  • Rocket discovers hundreds of small animals in cages on the spaceship.

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:

  • Rocket is seen bleeding from the chest and looks like he will die. One of the Guardians attempt to treat him with a bandage but he starts going into spasms and froths at the mouth.
  • Rocket is shown as a baby, stitched up and thrown into a cage. He’s shivering and scared.
  • The High Evolutionary orders his guards to exterminate Rocket and his friends. Rocket manages to escape but his friends don’t. Rocket cries and howls at their deaths.
  • Hundreds of children are found in cages. They are frightened and crying.
  • Mantis and Drax are faced with three enormous creatures, with huge mouths and teeth, that roar at them.
  • The High Evolutionary wears a mask throughout the movie but in the final scene, Gamora removes the mask revealing a monstrous burnt, fleshy face with no nose or lips.
  • Peter doesn’t make the jump into the Guardians' ship and is left floating in space. His face starts to freeze and swell up but he is saved at the last minute.

Thirteen and overinfo

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.

  • Some children in this age group are likely to be affected by the above-mentioned scenes.

Product placement

  • None noted.

Sexual references

There are some sexual references in this movie, including:

  • A romance between Peter and Gamora is briefly mentioned but Gamora doesn’t acknowledge it.

Nudity and sexual activity

  • None noted.

Use of substances

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

  • Peter is seen drunk in a pub and has to be carried out.
  • Mention of selling meth to guys with cockroach heads.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Arsehole
  • Hell
  • Damn
  • Fucking
  • Good God
  • Shit
  • Screw you
  • Butt
  • Suck my ….
  • Oh my God
  • Go to hell
  • Dick
  • Name calling such as:
    • Stupid
    • Idiot
    • Dumb ass
    • Sick son of a bitch
    • Jackass.

In a nutshell

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, the third in the Marvel series, is an action-adventure, science fiction movie. The film is fast moving but at 150 minutes it is quite a long movie for children. There is also a lot of violence in this movie, and while somewhat stylised, some of the punch-up scenes look quite realistic. In addition, the film is full of scary characters and environments, which makes it unsuitable for children under 13 and parental guidance is recommended for children aged 13 to 14.

The main messages from this movie are to look after those who are dear to you; and not to bow to the influence of evil.

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

  • Bravery
  • Courage
  • Loyalty
  • Empathy
  • Teamwork
  • Perseverance
  • Forgiveness - everyone deserves a second chance.

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

  • Why do evil characters want to rule the world with their own ideologies?
  • The importance of standing up to evil and not giving in to it.