Australian Council on Children and the Media

The Craft: Legacy

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Not suitable under 14; parental guidance to 16 (violence, language, creepy scenes and themes)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for The Craft: Legacy
  • a review of The Craft: Legacy completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 30 October 2020.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 14 Not suitable due to violence, language, creepy scenes and themes.
Children aged 14–16 Parental guidance recommended due to violence, language, creepy scenes and themes.
Children over the age of 16 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: The Craft: Legacy
Classification: M
Consumer advice lines: Mature themes
Length 94 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Lily (Cailee Spaeny) moves to a small town with her mum Helen (Michelle Monaghan) who is recently engaged to a charismatic man, named Adam (David Duchovny), with three sons. After a terrible first day at her new high school, Lily is befriended by three outcasts – Lourdes (Zoey Luna), Frankie (Gideon Adlon) and Tabby (Lovie Simone) – who soon discover that Lily has powers and that she is the ‘fourth’ for whom they have been waiting in order to form a coven. While Lily is tormented by bullies at school and struggles to fit in to her new ‘family’ she and her new friends begin to explore the depth of their combined power. They cast a spell on Timmy (Nicholas Galitzine), a notorious bully, to make him get in touch with his feminine side and in the process find that he has turned from a tormenter into a friend. The night after Lily casts a love spell on Timmy he is found dead and when the others learn what she has done Lily is blamed for his death. Consequently, the girls swear off using magic and bind Lily from doing the same. However, Lily then discovers that her would-be-stepfather is actually a demon in disguise, intent on stealing her power for himself. A message from beyond the grave brings new perspective to the coven and helps them unite against an evil force, stronger than each of them individually, but no match for the combined force of their power, friendship and female spirit.

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.

Witchcraft; Bullying; Male domination; Supernatural phenomena; Adoption; Curses; Menstruation; Single parent families.

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:

  • Lily makes Timmy fly into a row of lockers, using only her mind, after he touches her and continues to taunt her.
  • Timmy trips Lily on purpose, making her fall across the floor and continues to tease her for having her period.
  • Timmy is rumoured to have killed himself. The actual death is not shown.
  • Lily is upset with her mum for concealing the fact that she is adopted and she accidentally uses her power to shove her mother away.
  • Adam tries to grab Lily, he punches her in the head and she falls to the ground unconscious.
  • Adam repeatedly tries to attack Lily, threatening to kill her. He throws all of her friends into the air and they hit things, landing unconscious on the ground.
  • Adam admits to killing Timmy.
  • Lily and her friends burn Adam alive.

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:

  • Adam is a warlock in disguise. He can shapeshift and his eyes alternate between looking human and looking pure black and evil. He transforms from Lily’s mum back into himself and in the process looks demonic, like his body is made from the fires of Hell.

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:

  • Lily gets her period in the middle of class on her first day in a new school. Blood is seen dripping from behind her chair, her jeans are soaked through the back and blood is staining her crotch and legs. The boys behind her notice and make fun of her, continuing to laugh at and torment her as she runs from the room. While not scary, the scene may disturb some young children.
  • After being attacked by Adam, Lily wakes up on the ground in a darkened forest where Adam threatens to kill her if she doesn’t give him her powers. She is very scared and worried about her mother whom Adam says, “is all tied up right now.” An intense battle of power ensues, ending with Adam being burned alive.

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:

  • Lily experiences a number of flashback-style premonitions, featuring a rapid succession of faces, a slithering snake and a bloody knife. The scenes are always intense and Lily is terrified.
  • Lily wakes up one evening hearing creaking noises in her room. She searches through the shadows, clearly alarmed, sensing that something is there. Each time she thinks she sees something it turns out to be nothing, but the music is suspenseful and the creaking continues. Suddenly as she peers into the darkness a creepy face looms up in front of her. It turns out to be one of her stepbrothers sleepwalking but Lily is very disturbed by the encounter.

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.

It is possible that some children over the age of thirteen may also be disturbed by some of the above mentioned scenes.

Product placement

  • None noted.

Sexual references

There are some sexual references in this movie, including:

  • During a sex education class the topic of consent is discussed while two teens kiss in a video.
  • A character talks about being a virgin.
  • Timmy tells how he has “hooked up” with both girls and a guy. He said: “It felt good when I was with girls but I like both.”
  • Lourdes is openly transgender.

Nudity and sexual activity

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

  • Lily’s mum and Adam kiss and Adam keeps putting his arms around her.
  • Lily and Timmy passionately kiss on a couple of occasions.
  • Lily is seen naked from behind as she steps into a special bath.
  • There are two separate scenes in which masturbation is implied.
  • Lily’s stepbrother is seen in bed with his shirt off and it is implied that he is masturbating while watching porn.

Use of substances

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

  • There is a bong in a teen’s bedroom.
  • At a party one teen references a special drink he has hidden away.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Frequent profanity such as:
  • “Shit”
  • “Asshole”
  • “Douche bag”
  • “Dick bag”
  • “Slut”
  • “Damn”
  • “Bitch”
  • “Hell”.

In a nutshell

The Craft: Legacy is a supernatural drama that follows a similar, though far less violent, storyline as its 1996 predecessor. It showcases a very diverse cast and highlights messages such as the importance of friendship and the power of the female spirit. That being said, it is not a film for younger viewers and will be most enjoyed by an older teen and female audience.

The main message from this movie is that your differences are what make you powerful.

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

  • Respect for others
  • Self-Control
  • Friendship
  • Responsibility
  • Honesty and Vulnerability.

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

  • The mentality that weakness is bad, that if one is weak then all are weak and that only the strong should survive.
  • The belief than men and boys must always be strong and that if you are not you are nothing.
  • Believing strongly in magic, the ability to cast spells on others and playing with Ouija boards.
  • Strict, authoritarian parenting methods versus a more democratic style.
  • Bullying and the lasting affect that this can have on people.

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