Parent's Little Helper


What it's about: Batman and those in his orbit face moral dilemmas when Gotham is assaulted by a lunatic terrorist, The Joker.

Kid Attractor Factor: Kids love Batman.

Violence: Staggering, even for a Batman movie. Torture, killings, violence against women, men, children and dogs. However, we don't see the blood.

Language: A wisecrack.

Sex: None.

Drugs: Alcohol is consumed.

Parents advisory: The violence takes this right to the precipice of an R rating, worth considering before taking anybody 10 or under.


What it's about: A drunken superhero with a terrible attitude has his image burnished by a do-gooder public-relations guy and finds himself caring about life, the world and the human race again.

Kid Attractor Factor: Will Smith, superhero chases, brawls, cute kids.

Violence: Gunfire, gunshot wounds, deaths, blood, and a lot of cars get crunched.

Language: A lot more profanity than you'd expect from Will Smith.

Sex: More PG-13-worthy sexual attraction than anything overt.

Drugs: Lots and lots of alcohol is consumed by the hero.

Parents advisory: More violent and more coarse than the usual Will Smith fare. Take the PG-13 seriously.


What it's about: Hellboy and his fellow demons must battle a demonic elf and his golden army to save a world that still looks down on Hellboy's kind as "freaks."

Kid Attractor Factor: The title character, the comic-bookishness of it all, the action.

Violence: Guns, swords and spears do what guns, swords and spears do.

Language: Quite clean, considering the title.

Sex: Not really, though, as you might expect, Hellboy does live in sin.

Drugs: Beers are quaffed, cigars are puffed.

Parents advisory: The "13" seems a bit prudish for a comic-book movie this mild. It's fine for 10-and-older.


What it's about: A geologist goes in search of his long-lost brother, based on clues the guy left behind. The quest takes him and his nephew to the center of the Earth.

Kid attractor factor: A gigantic Venus' fly trap, a T-rex chase, assorted other monsters and such, all in glorious 3-D (in select cinemas).

Violence: Pratfalls and menacing monsters, an off-camera death.

Language: A Universal movie that's Disney-clean.

Sex: Nah.

Drugs: No no.

Parents advisory: The 3-D novelty is worth a trip to a special theater to see this; the action is geared more toward 10-and-unders.


What it's about: The "retired" mummy hunters, the O'Connells, are sucked back into combat with the supernatural, this time in China.

Kid attractor factor: Mummies, terra-cotta soldiers, lots of shooting, shouting, chasing and wisecracking.

Violence: Not quite nonstop, but almost. And very graphic for a PG-13.

Language: A bit of profanity.

Sex: A wink here, an innuendo there.

Drugs: Alcohol is consumed for comic effect.

Parents advisory: Entirely too violent for 10-and-unders, but if you're the sort of parent who dragged Junior to "The Dark Knight" ...


What it's about: Trained chimps and a descendant of the first space ape, Ham, are sent off to search for intelligent life.

Kid attractor factor: They're chimps, and they talk and mingle with all manner of aliens.

Language: Clean, with the odd potty reference

Sex: Chimps trying out pickup lines.

Drugs: None.

Parents advisory: Not edgy enough for older kids, but perfectly fine for 12-and-unders.


What it's about: Two obnoxious slacker, live-with-their-parents 40-year-olds must come to terms with being stepbrothers when their parents marry.

Kid attractor factor: Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly and lots of very naughty language.

Violence: Slapstick slap fights and goofball wrestling.

Language: Nothing you won't hear in a high school lunchroom -- just filthy.

Sex: Sort of.

Drugs: None.

Parents advisory: If you're not afraid of language, this could be a teaching opportunity for "Why I'm kicking you out when you're 18" lessons to your 13-, 14- or 15-year-old.


What it's about: A middle school girl convinces her drunken slouch of a dad to vote, and he becomes the man who decides a presidential election.

The Kid Attractor Factor: A kid co-stars, and kids love movie civics lessons, right?

Violence: None.

Language: Jarring bits of profanity that may be appropriate to the story but don't match the family tone of the movie.

Sex: None.

Drugs: Beer is consumed, with cocktails.

Parents advisory: Were it not for the language and (nonsexual) adult themes, this cinematic civics lesson would be very good family fare -- funny and educational.

WALL-E     G

What it's about: A lonely robot trash compactor, left behind to clean up the mess humans have made of Earth, falls in love with a probe robot who comes to see if signs of life have returned to the planet.

Kid attractor factor: Disney. Pixar. Robots.

Violence: Robot-on-robot slapstick.

Language: There isn't any, or much, and certainly no profanity.

Sex: Of course not.

Drugs: Ditto.

Parents advisory: Pixar returns to its kids-first mission with this cartoon, which, because it is so visual and not verbal, should be your 2- to 3-year-old's first trip to the movies.

— Roger Moore, The Orlando Sentinel