Spider-Man: No Way Home

image for Spider-Man: No Way Home

Short takes

Not suitable under 12; parental guidance to 14 (violence, themes, distressing scene, language)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Spider-Man: No Way Home
  • a review of Spider-Man: No Way Home completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 21 December 2021.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 12 Not suitable due to themes, violence, distressing scene and language.
Children aged 12–14 Parental guidance recommended due to themes, violence, distressing scene and language.
Children over the age of 14 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: Spider-Man: No Way Home
Classification: M
Consumer advice lines: Action violence
Length: 148 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Picking up where the previous Spider-Man film, Far From Home, left off, Peter Parker (Tom Holland) faces the reactions of society to a leaked tape indicating that he, Spider-Man, is responsible for the murder of Mysterio. This instantly throws his life into chaos as well as the lives of his girlfriend, MJ (Zendaya), and best friend, Ned (Jacob Batalon). When all three are refused entry to MIT, Peter takes matters into his own hands and goes to see Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), in the hopes that he can go back in time and fix things so that no one need know he is Spider-Man. Unable to do as Peter had hoped, they compromise with a spell that will erase the world’s collective memory, causing everyone to forget who Spider-Man is. When Peter requests some changes mid-spell, something goes wrong with the universe. Suddenly supervillains from alternative dimensions, including: Electro (Jamie Foxx); The Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe); Doc Ock (Alfred Molina); The Lizard (Rhys Ifans); and Sandman (Thomas Hayden Church), descend upon Peter’s world, bringing more chaos and wreaking more havoc than Peter could ever have imagined. With the help of MJ and Ned, Spider-Man must capture the supervillains and send them home before they destroy everything that he cares about. The only problem is Peter’s Aunt May (Marissa Tomei), who believes that everyone deserves a second chance and who encourages Peter to help those who cannot help themselves. Believing her to be right, Peter does all he can to transform the destinies of those he once sought to destroy. Unfortunately not all of them want to be helped and some will stop at nothing to remain where they are, feeding on power and fear and destruction. When Peter is broken by the death of a loved one, it is his friends and some unexpected visitors that give him the courage to continue; the ability to choose the hardest path; and the power to make peace with something he should have done in the first place.

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.

Death of a parental figure; The loss of loved ones; Guilt by association; Playing God with the lives of others; The pursuit of power at all costs; Good versus evil.

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:

  • A brick is thrown through a window at Spider-Man and a blind attorney catches it before it hits anyone.
  • Doc Ock attacks Spider-Man on a bridge, sending cars over the barrier – crashing them, flipping them over and propelling them into Spider-Man, as Spider-Man does all he can to try to save the lives of everyone in danger. Cars explode along the bridge and Spider-Man is crushed into pillars and thrown about as he tries to save families and individuals. The Green Goblin also makes an appearance here before he disappears.
  • Electro blasts Spider-Man with electricity, repeatedly trying to kill him before he is brought under control and contained in Dr. Strange’s dungeon.
  • It is described how all of the supervillains died and how they were all killed by Spider-Man in some way, shape or form.
  • Dr. Strange blasts Peter out of Spider-Man’s body.
  • Spider-Man is attacked by a cape and falls through levels of a mirror dimension as buildings collapse in on themselves. He and Dr. Strange continue to fight until Spider-Man grabs a box and the ‘mirror verse’ appears to break apart.
  • Electro threatens Spider-Man, telling him that he is going to fry him from the inside out.
  • Doc Ock is thrown out of a window. Spider-Man is thrown through a window, through a balcony and into a hallway by the Green Goblin. There is punching, kicking and fighting as the Green Goblin cackles incessantly.
  • The Lizard slams Spider-Man into the side of a building and through numerous floors. He is strangling Peter and Aunt May tries to stab him but the Green Goblin blasts through the door and it looks like he slices her with his glider. She crumples to the floor and lies amongst the debris.
  • The Green Goblin grabs Spider-Man by the head and it looks like he is about to crush it. There is a massive explosion and Peter appears to be burned.
  • The police shoot at Peter and he appears to be hit.
  • Other versions of Spider-Man tell how they have watched their loved ones die and how they have survived the pain.
  • There is a huge fight scene involving, hitting, punching, crushing, stabbing, flipping, suffocating and electrocuting, where all the supervillains come together to stop Spider-Man and his helpers. They attack however possible while Spider-Man attempts to inject an antidote into their systems before he sends them back to their own dimensions.
  • MJ is thrown off a building and Spider-Man attempts to rescue her but is knocked aside. She is saved at the last moment.
  • Spider-Man picks up a sharp object and is about to bring it down on the Green Goblin in an effort to decapitate him.
  • The Green Goblin stabs Spider-Man in the back just before he is forcibly injected with the antidote.

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:

  • There is a jump scare as an evil-looking monster bursts towards Peter from the cell he is being held in. He is kept mostly hidden in the shadows and it is unclear exactly what he is at first but the scene, though brief, is dark and menacing.
  • There are numerous monsters in the film: The Lizard, who looks like a scary dinosaur and is often attacking or trying to hurt Spider-Man; The Green Goblin, who wears a creepy, menacing-looking mask and whose evil cackle can send chills down your spine; and Sandman, whose features are distorted at the best of times by the sand that constantly surrounds him. All the villains seek to destroy Spider-Man at one point or another. There is often loud, dramatic music and the combined effect may be overwhelming for many young viewers.

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:

  • When Aunt May is hit by the Green Goblin she doesn’t, at first, realise the extent of her injuries. But she soon dies in Peter’s arms as he tries to comfort her in her final minutes. The scene is very emotional and distressing as Peter is in anguish, calling for help, powerless to save her life himself and forced to flee lest he be killed too.

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:

  • Doc Ock attacks a car with a family in it. They are seen going over the edge of the overpass while they all scream, including a terrified little girl in the back seat. Spider-Man saves them just before they are crushed to death on the railway tracks below.

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 further of concern.

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in this movie:

  • Lego toys are briefly shown.
  • Spider-Man is part of the vast MCU franchise which has lots of merchandise for sale both on-line and in-store. Themed products, such as memorabilia cups, are available for purchase in selected cinemas.

Sexual references

There are some sexual references in this movie, including:

  • When Aunt May walks into Peters room to find him in his underwear with MJ she assumes they were about to have sex and briefly cautions him about being prepared while Peter tries to explain the real and serious situation.

Nudity and sexual activity

There is some nudity and sexual activity in this movie, including:

  • Peter is briefly shown in his underwear while changing out of his Spider-Man costume.
  • Another character is said to be naked after changing back into his human form He is only shown from the chest up.
  • Peter and MJ share a passionate kiss.

Use of substances

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

  • In the scene at the end of the film a man is at a bar drinking and proclaims himself to be drunk.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Shit
  • Damn
  • Hell
  • Ass
  • God damn
  • What the f...

In a nutshell

Spider-Man: No Way Home is an action adventure and is the third Spider-Man movie starring Tom Holland to be released by Marvel Studios. The film is suspenseful, surprising and occasionally emotional. Due to the nature of the film it is not for younger children but one that will be best enjoyed by older teen and adult audiences along with Spider-Man fans.

The main messages from this movie are that ‘with great power comes great responsibility’; that everyone deserves a second chance; and that good deeds send ripples out into the universe, helping and inspiring others along the way.

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

  • Compassion
  • Helpfulness
  • Courage
  • Sacrifice
  • Teamwork.

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

  • Making hasty decisions.
  • Being quick to pass judgement on someone else and slow to look beyond the surface.
  • Pursuing power at all costs.
  • Trying to control the destiny of those you love.
  • Revenge and the affects thereof.
  • Violence as a means to solve conflict.