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Not recommended under 11, PG to 15 (Violence; scary scenes)
This topic contains:
|Children under 11||Not recommended due to violence and scary scenes|
|Children 11-14||parental guidance recommended due to violence and scary scenes|
|Children 15 and over||OK for this age group|
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:||Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban|
|Consumer advice lines:||Horror elements|
This review of the movie contains the following information:
Sirius Black, the notorious murderer has somehow evaded the Dementors (vicious, spirit type creatures) and escaped from the impenetrable Azkaban Prison. Mr. Weasley, from the Ministry of Magic warns Harry that he is in serious danger as Sirius is headed for Hogwarts to find him. It’s believed that it was Sirius Black (Harry’s Godfather) who betrayed Harry’s parents to Voldemort which led to their death.
While the students are on their way to Hogwarts on the train, it suddenly comes to a stop and all the lights go out. The window panes freeze over and a Dementor enters Harry’s carriage and tries to drag him away, causing him to faint. He might have succeeded but for Professor Lupin, the Defence of the Dark Arts teacher, who overcomes the Dementor with his wand. At Hogwarts, Dumbledore explains that Dementors are guarding the grounds to prevent Sirius Black from entering. He warns the students to keep well away.
Dumbledore and the teachers try to keep the school operating normally and Lupin starts to teach the young wizards and witches about boggarts. Boggarts are figments of the imagination that appear to students in the form of their most feared object. To combat them, students learn to yell out ‘ridiculous’ and the boggart changes into something funny. The Divination teacher Professor Trelawney fears for Harry and predicts disastrous events for him. Hagrid, the giant groundskeeper tries to teach the students how to befriend a hippogriff. Harry succeeds with Buckbeak but when Malfoy, a particularly nasty student whose father has unfortunately got great influence in running the school, tries, Buckbeak rears up and kicks him in the shoulder. Malfoy immediately seeks the dismissal of Hagrid but has to be satisfied with the execution of Buckbeak.
Harry and his two friends, Ron and Hermione, try to console Hagrid but are very upset themselves. On their way back from Hagrid’s house a wolf runs at them grabbing Ron by the ankle and dragging him into a hole beneath the Whomping Willow tree. Harry and Hermione try to enter the hole but the tree does its best to keep them out beating them back with its branches and sending Hermione flying. They eventually enter to find Ron unable to move with a broken leg. He tries to warn them that it’s a trap but he is too late and Sirius is there waiting for them. Harry runs at Sirius and nearly chokes him but is prevented by the arrival of Lupin.
Harry then learns from Sirius that it was not he but Peter Pettigrew who betrayed Harry’s parents. It was thought that Peter Pettigrew had also been killed but has in fact been living as Ron’s pet rat Scabbers for the past twelve years. Sirius makes Scabbers turn back into Peter and confess his crimes. Things start to turn nasty when at midnight Lupin turns into a werewolf, Peter turns back into a rat and runs away and Sirius also turns into a wolf. Sirius and Lupin fight and get injured and when Sirius turns back into himself he has an injured shoulder and is unable to fight off the Dementors who are waiting for him. Harry however, who has been taking private lessons from Lupin on how to defend himself against the Dementors, manages to overpower them thinking that it is in fact his father casting the spell. Harry is overcome by his efforts and Sirius appears dead but they are both taken back to Hogwarts where Sirius is locked in the tower awaiting return to Azkaban. Dumbledore has a plan however which he explains to Hermione hoping to save the life of more than one innocent victim.
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.
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 are many violent scenes in this movie, including:
Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.
Children in this age group would be scared by the horror and supernatural events in this movie and by the violent scenes listed above. The following would also scare children in this age group:
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.
Children in this age group would also be disturbed by the above-mentioned scenes
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.
Younger children in this age group could still be scared by the horror and supernatural events in this movie in particular:
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.
Most children in this age group would understand that this is a fantasy movie but some could still be disturbed by the horror, supernatural events and violence mentioned in the previous section.
None of concern in the film, but plenty of associated merchandise being marketed to children
None of concern
None of concern
There is some drinking of alcohol in the Dursleys’ home, in the pub at Hogsmeade and by the Professors at Hogwarts.
Mild coarse language, such as "bloody hell"
The theme of this movie is that good triumphs over evil, although Harry and Hermione do use violence to achieve their aims. Also the movie shows that sometimes people are erroneously convicted and should be given a second chance.
Values parents may wish to encourage include:
Values parents may wish to discourage include:
Tip: Leave out the first A, An or The
Selecting an age will provide a list of movies with content suitable for this age group. Children may also enjoy movies selected via a lower age.
Content is age appropriate for children this age
Some content may not be appropriate for children this age. Parental guidance recommended
Content is not age appropriate for children this age
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