Antlers parents guide

Antlers Parent Guide

This film is darkly atmospheric but squanders the opportunity to be more than a gory creature feature.

Overall D

In Theaters: In a small town in the middle of the Oregon woods, a sheriff, a teacher, and a disturbed student find themselves facing a terrifying creature.

Release date October 29, 2021

Violence D
Sexual Content C-
Profanity D
Substance Use C

Why is Antlers rated R? The MPAA rated Antlers R for violence including gruesome images, and for language

Run Time: 99 minutes

Parent Movie Review

A remote, misty, and rain-splattered town in Oregon has been slowly dying since the closure of the coal mine on the nearby mountain. Since then, with unemployment rising, the town has succumbed to drug abuse, poverty, and despair. Returning home for the first time in twenty years, Julia (Keri Russel) has taken up a teaching job at the local school, living with her brother Paul (Jesse Plemons), who works as the town’s sheriff. She’s particularly concerned about Lucas (Jeremy T. Thomas), one of her students, who seems malnourished, frightened, and is frequently a target of the class bullies. Following him home one day, Julia is alarmed to discover that his home appears to be abandoned, and worse, a strange snarling noise emerges from within. But Lucas’ secret is far more dangerous to the town than it is to him, and once the secret’s out, there’s no going back…

Shot in beautiful Hope, British Columbia, this movie has atmosphere oozing out of it. Damp, foggy mountains, empty streets, decrepit houses…everything you could want in a horror flick. Every moldering shadow seems ready to vomit forth some hellish creature – even if most of them don’t. And once you get a look at the monster, you’re going to wish it had just stayed in one of those ominous shadows.

This is why I found this movie so frustrating. It got so many things so right! That just means that when it squanders opportunities to develop its themes and characters, it’s even more disappointing. This film could have been so much more than a two-dimensional creature feature with a pretty production location, but it just can’t seem to get out of its own way.

Of course, that doesn’t matter much to a family audience, for whom this film is deeply unsuitable regardless of quality. Grisly body horror is the order du jour, with some of the most graphically mangled bodies I can remember seeing filling the screen. I actually heard a few people gasp, which should give you some idea of the kind of mutilated messes this movie has in store for you. It’s also got a regular litany of profanity with 20 f-bombs in 99 minutes, or roughly one every five minutes. Not that I can entirely blame the characters for that one, since if I was ever confronted with some of the stuff they see in this movie, I think I’d get those first twenty out in the first minute. But between that and the gore, there’s just too much here to be worth watching for your average viewer – or even a weird horror fan like me.

Directed by Scott Cooper. Starring Keri Russell, Jesse Plemons, Jeremy T Thomas. Running time: 99 minutes. Theatrical release October 29, 2021. Updated

Rating & Content Info

Why is Antlers rated R? Antlers is rated R by the MPAA for violence including gruesome images, and for language

Violence: Individuals including children are repeatedly gored, bitten, consumed, stabbed, and generally mutilated. Several horrifically mangled corpses are seen.
Sexual Content: There are some crude sexual references and a homophobic slur. There are disturbing references to child sex abuse.
Profanity: There are 20 sexual expletives, three scatological terms, and occasional uses of mild curses and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Individuals are shown cooking methamphetamine. There are frequent references to substance abuse and addiction. Characters are not seen using drugs or alcohol.

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Antlers Parents' Guide

Are you familiar with indigenous stories about mysterious creatures? Where do stories about the wendigo originate? Do you know if indigenous peoples inhabit or used to inhabit your area? Are you familiar with any of their traditional stories?

Home Video

Related home video titles:

Another story inspired by Indigenous legends is Don’t Say Its Name. Blood Quantum pits the members of a First Nations reservation in Canada against an army of zombies. If you’re looking for creature features, you could try films like Malignant, The Thing, Werewolves Within, Cabin in the Woods, and The Devil Below.