The Old Guard Parent Guide
This movie is suited to viewers looking for big dumb fun, but only if they can overlook all the swearing.
Parent Movie Review
The Old Guard is an adaptation of a comic book of the same name by Greg Rucka, who also wrote the film, and boy does it ever show. I’m not ripping on comic books as a medium, because they can be an interesting vehicle for complex ideas, but the dialogue in this film is so stereotypically stilted and over-the-top that it puts a lot of superhero movies to shame. Which is too bad, because the film also addresses the stress and tragedy that accompanies immortality in some really interesting ways – you’ve just got to muddle through some corny dialogue to get there.
The other attribute that comes with a comic book provenance is big action set pieces. This is first and foremost an action film, and the stunt choreography is extensive. Charlize Theron shines as usual and is clearly doing a good deal of her own stunt work. Unfortunately, the cinematography is mediocre at best, and could have been much better used to enhance the action. In a few cases, the editing does little more than confuse what’s happening.
The Old Guard is well suited to teenagers looking for some big dumb fun. The “R” rating is mostly for language and violence, but if we’re being honest, the violence you can get away with in a PG-13 has been increasing, and if this film had cut back on the f-bombs a little, it probably could have snuck in at the lower rating. There is no sexual content to slow up the action, which is appreciated. Nothing sucks the fun out of watching an action movie with your family like prolonged nudity.
Despite an interesting premise and some thoughtful character work, this is another example of a cast in search of a better script. Charlize Theron and Chiwetel Ejiofor are big name, hard-hitting talent, and they do an excellent job with the script and direction they’re given. I would love to see them paired up in something more carefully done. As for this production…well, at least as far as Netflix action movies are concerned (see The Last Days of American Crime and Extraction), this is probably the best of a bad lot. Besides, even I have a soft spot for a dumb action movie sometimes. Just make sure you’re in the mood to embrace the stupid before you click “Play”.Directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood. Starring Charlize Theron, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Harry Melling. Running time: 118 minutes. Theatrical release July 10, 2020. Updated July 10, 2020
The Old Guard
Rating & Content Info
Why is The Old Guard rated R? The Old Guard is rated R by the MPAA for sequences of graphic violence, and language.
Violence: Individuals are repeatedly shot, stabbed, cut, and blown up. Graphic injuries, including compound fractures, are shown. There are references to torture.
Sexual Content: There are a few non-graphic sexual jokes.
Profanity: There are seven uses of extreme profanity and twenty uses of scatological curses. There are occasional mild profanities and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Individuals are shown drinking copious amounts of hard liquor, but due to their supernatural abilities it scarcely affects them. Drugs are shown but not used.
Page last updated July 10, 2020
The Old Guard Parents' Guide
Would you want to live forever? What do you think would be the best part? What would be the worst?
Related home video titles:
For more immortal warriors, the otherwise unimpressive X-Men Origins: Wolverine features the titular hero and his brother fighting in many wars as time passes, forcing them to come to terms with the morality of their abilities. The Last Witch Hunter starring Vin Diesel also runs on a similar premise.