Assassin’s Creed Parent Guide
Viewing this movie adaptation of a video game feels like being stuck watching your friend play while you patiently wait for your turn.
Parent Movie Review
Assassin’s Creed is one of the most successful video game franchises of the last decade. From its first release in November of 2007, it has grown to include dozens of versions, comics, books and now a motion picture. Set in the same fictional universe, each story explores a secret war that has been waging for hundreds of years between two groups: The Templar which seeks control over the freewill of mankind so it can unify the world under one rule, and The Assassin’s Creed, a brotherhood sworn to stop them and protect the liberty of the human race.
Cal Lynch (Michael Fassbender) finds himself in the middle of this ancient battle because he descends from a long line of these Assassins. After being imprisoned and sentenced to death for murder, he awaits his fate in a state of the art holding facility. However, instead of being executed, he finds The Templar wants his DNA. With a machine called “the Animus” the clandestine clan can recreate events from the life of one’s predecessors. They use their invention to send Cal back to the Spanish Inquisition period to relive key moments during the mortality of his ancestor, Aguilar de Nerha (also played by Michael Fassbender).
Those unfamiliar with the video games will likely find themselves confused as very little time is spent in the script explaining the historical setting. In fact, very little time is spent explaining anything at all. The brief backstories and introductions make it hard for the characters, including Cal/Aguilar de Nerh to make much of an impression on the audience. Unlike the games, these scant offerings are likely to leave the protagonist unlikeable and his situation unmemorable.
The vast majority of the film is spent on fight scenes that look like they have been cut right out of the games. So much so that viewing this movie feels like being stuck watching your friend play while you patiently wait for your turn.
Nearly all of the action features medieval era weapons. Swords, knives, clubs and arrows are constantly flying across the screen and into the bodies of whoever is in the way. Those not killed by these implements are dispatched by being pushed off buildings or having their necks broken. While most of the portrayals are not graphic, there are a few exceptions. Fallen victims are seen in their own blood. A man stabs a knife into the neck of a woman, another has his throat sliced. And a distant scene shows people being burned at the stake.
The up side to the frequent violence is there’s not a lot of room to depict much else. Sexual content and substance abuse are almost nonexistent and profanities are few, although the sexual expletive is heard once.
Having played Assassin’s Creed over the years, I was eager to see how the story would adapt to the big screen. I was quickly disappointed. To other fans of the series, I suggest you just stay home and play the games.Directed by Justin Kurzel. Starring Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard, Jeremy Irons . Running time: 115 minutes. Theatrical release December 21, 2016. Updated July 17, 2017
Rating & Content Info
Why is Assassin’s Creed rated PG-13? Assassin’s Creed is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for intense sequences of violence and action, thematic elements and brief strong language.
Violence: Much of the theme of this movie involves fighting between two groups separated by ideological differences. With the bulk of this conflict taking place in medieval periods, fights involve swords, knives, arrows, some explosions and many hand-to-hand battles. Some of the slayings are shown on screen, for example a character is stabbed in the throat and another’s neck is slit. However, considering the brutal injuries, there is very little gore shown. One character is seen lying in a pool of blood. Participants in a cult-like group are required to amputate a single finger (seen without detail). A character accused of murder is prepared to be executed by injection (the scene depicts him anxiously struggling). Characters are prepared to be burned at the stake. Women are often at the mercy of men—in one scene a man threatens a woman with his hand around her throat. A young boy is abducted. Parents should be aware that it is difficult to identify a “good guy” in this film and even those fighting for “free will” have aggressive past histories.
Sexual Content: Mild sexual references are briefly heard.
Profanity: A single sexual expletive and a single scatological term are used.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Brief alcohol use is depicted.
Page last updated July 17, 2017
More parents' guide for Assassin’s Creed after the break...
Assassin’s Creed Parents' Guide
In this movie, the protagonist is fighting to maintain “free will”—meaning the ability for humankind to choose for themselves. Is this a cause worth fighting for? Do we ever obtain true “free will” in our society?
The Assassin’s Creed live by a motto that declares, “Nothing is true; everything is permitted.” There are various interpretations as to what that means. Do you think “free will” means “everything is permitted”? How do consequences fit into this philosophy? Is nothing true?
News About "Assassin’s Creed"
This movie is based on the video game Assassin’s Creed.
From the Studio: Through a revolutionary technology that unlocks his genetic memories, Callum Lynch (Michael Fassbender) experiences the adventures of his ancestor, Aguilar, in 15th Century Spain. Callum discovers he is descended from a mysterious secret society, the Assassins, and amasses incredible knowledge and skills to take on the oppressive and powerful Templar organization in the present day. Written by 20th Century Fox
The most recent home video release of Assassin’s Creed movie is March 21, 2017. Here are some details…
Home Video Notes: Assassin’s Creed
Release Date: 21 March 2017
Assassin’s Creed releases to home video (Blu-ray/DVD/Digital Copy) with the following extras:
- Take the Pledge: Behind the Scenes of Assassin’s Creed – Join the Brotherhood as you go behind the scenes of Assassin’s Creed in a five-part documentary
- Deleted Scenes Conversation with Justin Kurzel & Christopher Tellefsen – Director Justin Kurzel and Editor Christopher Tellefsen look back on the scenes that didn’t quite make the cut
- Deleted Scenes Conversation with Justin Kurzel – Join Director Justin Kurzel and his key collaborators on Assassin’s Creed as they look back on the process of crafting the film
- Gallery & More! – Photos from the set, concept, costumes and weapons art.