The Sea Beast Parent Guide
The messages about respecting differences are good but the swashbuckling action is the star of this kid-friendly adventure film.
Parent Movie Review
Ever since his rescue from a sunken ship as a young boy, Jacob Holland (Karl Urban) has made his living as a monster hunter under the direction of his rescuer, Captain Crow (Jared Harris) on the mighty Inevitable. The hunters are revered in their kingdom for the risks they take to protect cities and ships from the incredible array of sea monsters which plague the briny deep.
Maisie Brumble (Zaris-Angel Hator), herself an orphan of lost hunters, has always dreamed of the life of adventure, excitement, and peril that hunters lead. So, naturally, she stows away on the Inevitable as it sails off to hunt the legendary Red Bluster, a humungous beast credited with the sinkings of dozens of ships. But while Jacob and Maisie chase the monster, they begin to wonder if these beasts really are all that monstrous…
While this isn’t one a big Disney/Pixar releases, director Chris Williams has credits for Moana, Mulan, Zootopia, Frozen, Tangled, Big Hero 6, and other top drawer productions and he brings that experience to this film. The animation pushes itself as far as it can afford to and has a deliberate style that gives the film a sense of personality while covering up some of the animation’s limitations. Digital animation can now produce photorealistic effects, and we see that in this film, particularly with background elements like trees and water. The stylization of the characters gives them a little more of the expressive individuality that you associate with traditional animation.
The synopsis may sound violent, but parents can be assured that injuries happen entirely off-screen, and characters only appear after dangerous action with some new scars to show for it. Mostly, they just get tossed around by the slippery appendages of a variety of ocean critters. On the other hand, The Sea Beast has a good deal more drinking than your average kiddie movie, but no one appears intoxicated and, hey, most of them are sailors. It goes with the territory.
As with almost every story about monsters, this is an opportunity for an audience to examine their notions of what constitutes monstrosity, and who the real monsters are. These movies force us to consider concepts of otherness, and how society treats people it sees as different. It also offers good lessons about learning from your own mistakes, evaluating the trustworthiness of people and information, and of course, the merits of kindness. It even delivers these positive themes without feeling preachy or irritating. Better yet, as far as a younger audience is concerned, it’s packed to the beams with old-fashioned swashbuckling excitement and adventure, and more than a few creatures to keep a weather eye on.Directed by Chris Williams. Starring Dan Stevens, Zaris-Angel Hator, Karl Urban, Jared Harris, . Running time: 115 minutes. Theatrical release July 8, 2022. Updated July 5, 2022
Watch the trailer for The Sea Beast
The Sea Beast
Rating & Content Info
Why is The Sea Beast rated PG? The Sea Beast is rated PG by the MPAA for action, violence and some language
Violence: Characters are thrown around and injured by monsters. Monsters are shot, stabbed, and poisoned. When sailors cut off tentacles, the monsters ooze black liquid. Weapons used involve swords, arrows, cannons, muskets, and knives. A child endeavors to stab a man but is prevented.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: There is one use of mild profanity and some terms of deity. There is some mild bad language.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adult characters are seen drinking socially on several occasions.
Page last updated July 5, 2022
The Sea Beast Parents' Guide
How has this kingdom become reliant on the hunters? Who benefits from their hard work and sacrifice? What does Maisie learn about the monsters and the hunters that changes her understanding of her society? How did the stories she read inform her worldview? What does she do to change it? Why is change so difficult on a national scale?
Related home video titles:
Kids looking for this kind of adventure should try films like How to Train your Dragon, Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Treasure Planet, Muppet Treasure Island, Moana, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Adventures of Tintin, Finding Nemo, Missing Link, or The Pirates: Band of Misfits. Adults with a passion for the sea might like Master and Commander: The Far Side of the WorldorIn the Heart of the Sea.