Is The BFG movie safe for your kids to watch? Today I’m diving into a full non-spoiler review of Steven Spielberg’s first Disney film, from a parents’ perspective. The BFG Movie Review | Safe for Kids?
The BFG Movie Review | Safe for Kids? #TheBFG
Fee. Fi. Foe. Fum. I smell giants, of the big friendly kind. Bringing a nostalgic childhood book to the screen is never an easy task, and Steven Spielberg and Disney certainly had a huge challenge before them (yes, pun intended). With my 7-year-old now finished reading The BFG for the first time, will the first ever Spielberg and Disney collaboration do Roald Dahl’s beloved book justice – for my son’s sake? This parent review of The BFG movie covers everything in a non-spoiler fashion. Is The BFG movie safe for your kids to see? I break down everything from the animation, to the story, to that PG rating. If you’re wondering whether to take your children to see The BFG, look no further.
Disney never ceases to impress. With the biggest (*snicker) challenge of bringing a Giant and a girl to the screen at the same time – it was a seamless transition that will leave your kids in wonder. Spielberg’s vision of The BFG book was pretty accurate from what I read in the book. The colors and folklore were very vivid and believable without overselling the CG. And the dream catching sequence was certainly a highlight in the animation department. I applaud that.
BFG in 3D
While I’m not usually a big fan of seeing movies in 3D (see my Finding Dory movie review), there’s something playful about making giants appear bigger on screen. Enhancing the film without focusing on making this a stereotypical “movie for 3D,” I enjoyed seeing the world of giants popping out on the screen. I think your kids (the one that can keep glasses on their faces for a whole film) will enjoy the subtle 3D effects.
Watching this movie took me back to my childhood. Clutching my Corduroy doll and gazing up at E.T. on the screen for the first time, it has that same sort of Steven Spielberg nostalgia for me. A nod to the 80s filmmaking (and E.T. screenwriter for that matter), I think this Spielberg “throwback” film with a modern day twist will have that nostalgic effect on your kids too.
If you’re looking for a 100% true to book movie, it’s not here. In true Steven Spielberg fashion, the movie will have a few unexpected twists in the plot. Filling in some loop holes, Spielberg aims to get your heartstrings to pull just a little bit more out of your chest with these new additions. Focusing on deepening the relationship between The BFG and Sophie, you’ll find the pair building trust, honesty and a forever kinship that was only loosely implied in the book. No, I won’t spoil the fun. But if you’ve read the book along with your child this summer like I have, you’ll definitely have some great talking points for comparing the movie to the book. Be prepared for a few Disney “choke up” moments, but nothing that will have you sobbing through the whole movie (think Finding Dory, NOT Inside Out).
The BFG’s jabbering will definitely have your whole family giggling. And the breakfast scene was an outstanding replica of Roald Dahl’s genius.
That PG Rating
If you’ve haven’t read the book yet, spoiler. This movie is about Giants. Giants like to eat people, little children in fact. So before you even step into the theater, you’re going to have to dive headfirst into the land of folklore and fantasy. But don’t worry. You won’t actually be seeing any horrific Giants eating children – though it is certainly implied many, many times.
Thankfully, there’s NO language to report in this movie. That already gives me a sigh of relief.
Larger themes focus on friendship, redefining family, and stereotyping. The thorn in the PG rating would have to lie in the big (pun intended) theme of bullying. The BFG is bullied by the other larger giants in more horrible ways than one. And at times, it made me wince. Throwing punches, heavy vehicles and even The BFG himself in the air – the giants thoroughly enjoy picking on “the little guy.” And if that’s not something you want your child exposed to yet, then this is NOT the movie for them.
As for my 7 year old that has read this book in under 3 weeks with fervor, I cannot wait to take him. But he’s also of advanced reading age, understanding the concepts of fantasy vs. reality and having the ability to handle deeper emotional circumstances. I highly recommend screening the movie first if you’re on the fence. And I certainly will not be bringing my 3 year old to this one. With the giants on the brink of nightmare status, and enough slow character building moments to get her bored and running around the theater, this is NOT the movie for her.
Overall, I was impressed. Steven Spielberg’s first Disney movie collaboration was everything I hoped it to be. A vivid storytelling piece with vision and fantasy – I left with a smile, a twinkling BFG kind of smile. Disney’s The BFG is now in theaters.