Australian Council on Children and the Media

Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas

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Not recommended under 8, parental guidance recommended 8-10 due to violence, scary scenes and themes

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas
  • a review of Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 12 February 2018.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 8 Not recommended due to violence, scary scenes and themes
Children aged 8-10 Parental guidance recommended due to violence, scary scenes and themes.

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: Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas
Classification: PG
Consumer advice lines: Mild themes and animated violence
Length 85 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

This movie is a Spanish animated feature that has been dubbed in English. It is the sequel to the original 2012 movie “Tad the Lost Explorer”. Tad (voice of Trevor White) has returned to his job as a bricklayer in New York City but now he is also an archaeology student with grand ambitions. He is head over heels in love with ‘star’ archaeologist Sara Lavrov (voice of Alex Kelly) and is looking for an opportunity to see her again and ask her to be his girlfriend. As luck would have it, Sara has recently uncovered an ancient scroll that is linked to the story of King Midas and she is in town to present her findings.

At the grand unveiling, the scroll is stolen right from under their noses by the villainous Jack Rackham (voice of Ramon Tikaram), who seeks to harness the power of King Midas and become invincible. Rackham kidnaps Sara, knowing that only she will be able to help him solve the mystery of the scroll. Tad is devastated and knows that he must save Sara.

Together with Sara’s assistant Tiffany (Gemma Whelan), his dog Jeff, and the comical ‘Mummy’ (voice of Joseph Balderrama) who has been exiled from an Egyptian tomb, Tad sets off to Spain to save Sara and win back the scroll.

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.

Archaeology; myths and legends; power and wealth; cultural stereotypes; love and romance

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 animated violence in this movie including:

  • Martial arts style action sequences that involve kicking and punching
  • Jack Rackham injects one of his employees with ‘truth serum’ and then ejects him from a plane to fall to his death. Sara is also injected with truth serum but appears to be overdosed as she loses consciousness and is seen looking heavily drugged.
  • Several scenes of guns being fired or held to people’s heads in hostage situations.
  • Several scenes of slapstick violence. For example, characters being hit with a paella pan.

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 character called ‘Mummy’ who is an exiled, zombie mummy from an Egyptian tomb. He is quite scary to look at although he is a comic character and, after the initial surprise, seems harmless. He regularly loses limbs and bones.
  • The opening sequence involves an archaeologist diving into an underwater cave and struggling to escape as it collapses in on her. There is dramatic music and scary visuals.
  • The villain is a menacing character who behaves in a threatening and violent way.
  • Tad and Tiffany become trapped in an underwater chamber and it is slowly filling with water and they need to find a way out before they drown.
  • Several scenes involve precarious situations, for example: wild car chases through a city, climbing along narrow cliff edges, falling through dark tunnels.
  • Tad, Tiffany and Mummy must crawl through an impossibly narrow tunnel which is filled with large spiders, worms and creepy crawlies.

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.

Some children in this age group may also be scared by some of the above-mentioned scenes

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.

Nothing of concern

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

Nothing of concern

Sexual references

There are some sexual references in this movie, including:

  • Sara, the central female character, is referred to as ‘hot’, ‘a ten’ or ‘out of your league’. She is highly sexualised with large breasts and wearing tight fitting and sexy clothing, even while engaging in adventurous archaeological activities.
  • The ‘Mummy’ dresses up as a woman for comic effect and behaves in an exaggerated way. He pretends to be Sara so that Tad can practice his romance skills.
  • A Spanish taxi driver is overcome with love and desire at first sight when he sees the Mummy dressed as a woman. He showers her with endearments.

 

Nudity and sexual activity

Nothing of concern

Use of substances

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

  • Sara is injected with a ‘truth serum’. She appears to be overdosed and is at first unconscious, then appears looking drugged.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • loser

In a nutshell

Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas is a formulaic romance-centred adventure story that is a bit like an Indiana Jones adventure. It is fast paced but it is also quite predictable with a fair few cultural stereotypes. Due to violence, scary scenes and themes, it is not recommended for children under 8 and parental guidance is recommended for the 8-10 age group

The main message from this movie echoes the message from the tale of King Midas, that love and human connection are more powerful than all the gold or wealth in the world.

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

  • the power of love and friendship.
  • the sacrifices that people will make for true love.

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

  • What are cultural or gender stereotypes?
  • Why are women characters often depicted as sexy?

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