Australian Council on Children and the Media

My Little Pony: Equestria Girls

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Not recommended under 4, PG to 8 (Scary scenes; Themes)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for My Little Pony: Equestria Girls
  • a review of My Little Pony: Equestria Girls completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 2 September 2013.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 4 Not recommended due to scary scenes
Children 4 to 8 Parental guidance recommended due to scary scenes and themes
Children 8 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.

Name of movie: My Little Pony: Equestria Girls
Classification: G
Consumer advice lines: None
Length 80 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

When Twilight Sparkles (voiced by Tara Strong) has her magic crown stolen by a mysterious night time visitor, she is forced to enter a magic mirror in the hope of retrieving the crown and returning it to its rightful place in the Crystal Empire.  On the other side of the magic mirror Twilight Sparkles comes across an alternative world where she finds she has become a human, and where the humans around her start to become familiar and comforting friends.  However not all of the humans are friendly, and when Twilight meets Sunset Shimmer (voiced by Rebecca Shoichet) she realises that persuading Sunset Shimmer to turn her evil thoughts into good will be her biggest challenge.

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.

magic; good versus evil; bullying

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 the following examples:

  • When Sunset Shimmer puts a crown on her head it makes her evil.  She and her two friends are transformed into devil like creatures, with fangs, spiky fingers and tail.  The weather becomes dark and stormy and the creatures turn the other children into zombies.
  • Sunset Shimmer bullies many of the children at the school.  In one scene one of the children is seen cowering in fear.

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:

  • A cloaked horse creeps into Twilight’s room while she is asleep and steals her crown

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.

Younger children in this age group may also be disturbed by some of the above-mentioned violent and scary scenes.

Product placement

There is no product placement in this movie; however the My Little Pony brand is associated with numerous toys and other child-related merchandise.

Sexual references

There are some mild sexual references throughout this movie including;

  • Mild flirting between two of the characters.  They are seen blushing and twirling hair.  One of them asks the other out on a date.

Coarse language

There is some course language and name calling that children may imitate, including;

  • bummer
  • fool

In a nutshell

My Little Pony: Equestria girls is an animated children’s story about the My Little Pony characters who are confronted with a pony intruder intent on using their power to further her own selfish desires. Although it has a G rating, there are scenes involving scary characters and bullying which may scare or confuse children under six and raise issues for children older than this, so parental guidance is recommended for under 8s. Some under 4s may find the film too scary.

The main message from this movie is that the power of good will triumph over the influence of evil.

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

  • Each of the ponies represent a different value: honesty, kindness, laughter, generosity, loyalty, magic

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss the real-life consequences of bullying and how it should be managed.

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