Cosmoball parents guide

Cosmoball Parent Guide

Cheesy special effects don't dampen the fun of this tween-friendly action movie.

Overall A-

DVD: Earth now competes in the galactic Cosmoball games but the team is short one player. Then Anton discovers that he has the teleportation ability that the team needs.

Release date March 20, 2021

Violence B
Sexual Content B
Profanity A-
Substance Use A

Why is Cosmoball rated Not Rated? The MPAA rated Cosmoball Not Rated

Run Time: 118 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Although a junior member of the new intergalactic community, Earth did not escape unscathed from the last galactic war. In fact, the war finished on Earth, with the final battle blowing the Moon apart and trapping an evil alien named Cherno (Artur Ivanov) deep inside the planet. But that was twenty years ago. Now, the world is crazy for Cosmoball, played by species from across the galaxy in a massive spaceship hovering over Russia. The only thing players need is the innate ability to teleport. On Earth, only three people have been found with this unusual skill, leaving the team one player short…until Anton (Yevgeny Romantsov) finds his powers. But even with the help of his teammates Natasha (Viktoriya Agalakova), Pele (Ivan Ivanovich), and Fan (Elizaveta Taychenacheva), teleporting is hard work. Worse, Anton has recently run into Valaya (Mariya Lisovaya), who has her own agenda…

I fully expected to hate this movie. From the trailer, I was expecting discount Russian Space Jam, and although that might sound intriguing, I was not anticipating a quality film. And, for the most part, I was right. The CGI can be pretty plasticky, the story is very paint-by-numbers, and the dialogue is a little awkward (largely due to the slightly rough subtitle translation). What I wasn’t expecting was for it to be a whole lot of fun.

It’s more Alita: Battle Angel than Space Jam, but it’s definitely still a kids’ movie. The high-speed Cosmoball games are exactly the kind of thing I would have loved when I was about nine, and it’s non-violent enough that my parents probably would have let me watch it. The biggest problems are a handful of remarkably mild sex jokes and some skin-tight athletic wear – if you’re familiar with Mystique from the X-Men franchise, that’s about as graphic as it gets here. There are only a few instances of mild profanity, at least in the English subtitled version (as yet, I’m not aware of a dubbed version). This is likely the biggest barrier for younger audiences: some of these subtitles flash by pretty quick, so unless your kids are completely disinterested in the story or are fast readers, they’re going to have a hard time keeping up. I almost missed some of these, especially in big action scenes when I was looking at another part of the screen.

Cosmoball might not be an ideal choice for young viewers, but if you have tweens with solid reading skills and the patience for subtitles, I think you’ve got a hit here. Or maybe my expectations are just low for Russian movies: the last one I saw was Iron Mask, and I’m still not sure I’ve recovered.

Directed by Dzhanik Fayziev. Starring Viktoriya Agalakova, Georgiy Bestaev, and Khristina Blokhina. Running time: 118 minutes. Theatrical release March 20, 2021. Updated

Watch the trailer for Cosmoball

Rating & Content Info

Why is Cosmoball rated Not Rated? Cosmoball is rated Not Rated by the MPAA

Violence: Individuals are shown sustaining mild injuries in the course of a sporting event. A character is shown grappling with the police. An individual is struck by a car but uninjured. Two individuals are stabbed, and one is disintegrated when thrown into the sun. An animal is deliberately hurt to control it. Many individuals are presumably killed or injured off-screen in large explosions.
Sexual Content: Individuals are shown in body-conforming athletic wear in a non-sexual context. There are several scenes of innuendo or sexual humour with no graphic imagery or dialogue.
Profanity: There is very infrequent use of mild profanity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: None.

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Cosmoball Parents' Guide

Anton struggles to be honest and open with his teammates. What are the consequences? How does Anton learn from his mistakes? What does he do to take responsibility? How do his choices mirror Belo’s choices in similar circumstances?

Home Video

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The best second choice here is probably Alita: Battle Angel. Other futuristic sports can be found in Tronand Tron: Legacy, as well as The Hunger Games and Space Jam. Adults looking for darker Russian sci-fi will likely enjoy Sputnik, which is a very Soviet take on an Alien-style film.