Knock at the Cabin parents guide

Knock at the Cabin Parent Guide

Saying this doesn't feel like a Shyamalan movie is a compliment.

Overall C

Theaters: A young girl and her family are taken hostage by a group of people who claim that they can prevent the apocalypse, but one of them will have to die.

Release date February 3, 2023

Violence D
Sexual Content A
Profanity D
Substance Use B

Why is Knock at the Cabin rated R? The MPAA rated Knock at the Cabin R for violence and language.

Run Time: 100 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Eric (Jonathan Groff) and Andrew (Ben Aldridge) have brought their daughter, Wen (Kristina Cui) for a vacation at a beautiful cabin in rural Pennsylvania. The house is beautiful and it’s located on a stunning lake in the midst of the woods. Their enjoyment is short-lived, however, as they are soon visited by Leonard (Dave Bautista), Sabrina (Nikki Amuka-Bird), Adriane (Abby Quinn), and Redmond (Rupert Grint), all bearing large, handcrafted weapons. It’s hard not to be concerned when four strangers show up at your house with, for example, a pitchfork with an axe blade attached, and insist that you hear them out.

Despite gently encouraging their new guests to leave, Eric and Andrew are soon overpowered and tied to chairs in their living room, listening to a patently insane story. Each of their visitors has had visions of the end of the world, and have come together to prevent it. The only way to stop the end of days, unfortunately, is for this little family to make a sacrifice. One of them has to be killed by the other two in order to prevent the apocalypse. Leonard and his cohorts are here to encourage them to make a choice, but they cannot do it for them. And time is running out for Eric and Andrew to come to a decision…

I have, in the past, described M. Night Shyamalan as my sworn directorial nemesis. Sixth Sense notwithstanding, he’s made some of the most aggravating films I’ve ever watched. The characters and stories are thin and irritating, and all just serve as a build up to whatever narrative twist he’s concocted to annoy you. So when I tell you that I sometimes forgot this was a Shyamalan movie, you know how impressive that is. But I don’t think that has much to do with Shyamalan, actually. I haven’t read the book this film is based on, but the premise is engaging enough that I think I’ll add it to my stack of books I have yet to read. I was also really impressed by Jonathan Groff, who is probably best known for his Broadway career, including the role of mad King George III in Hamilton. Despite his over-the-top performance as the king, he’s excellent and (comparatively) understated in this film.

I wouldn’t recommend overthinking the movie. Don’t have a belabored discussion about it in the car on the way home. The details unravel under moderate scrutiny. Treat it as a reasonably interesting piece of momentary entertainment and move on. Definitely don’t watch it with your kids: There are some fairly graphic depictions of violence and a healthy heaping of profanity which make this a really, really poor choice for younger viewers – even aside from the continual peril of the situation. But, as a reasonably exciting little thriller, you could do worse. At least, when you manage to forget who the director is: You’re still going to have to sit through some weird camera work and dicey dialogue. Such is the price you pay when you sit down for a Shyamalan film.

Directed by M. Night Shyamalan. Starring Dave Bautista, Jonathan Groff, Ben Aldridge. Running time: 100 minutes. Theatrical release February 3, 2023. Updated

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Knock at the Cabin
Rating & Content Info

Why is Knock at the Cabin rated R? Knock at the Cabin is rated R by the MPAA for violence and language.

Violence: Several people are killed with crude hand tools. A man is stabbed in the leg and torso. A person is violently struck over the head with a bottle. Two characters are shot and killed. An man cuts his own throat. People are seen dying in a variety of disasters on news broadcasts.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: There are 24 sexual expletives and three scatological curses, along with occasional use of mild profanity and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adult characters are briefly seen drinking socially.

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Knock at the Cabin Parents' Guide

What would you do in Eric and Andrew's place? Why? What do you think of the choice they made?

Home Video

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You can see Ben Aldridge in Spoiler Alert, and Jonathon Groff in Hamilton. Other unusual invasion horrors include films like Us, Don’t Breathe, The Intruder, Panic Room, and Parasite. M. Night Shyamalan played with apocalyptic themes in Knowing.