Get ready to “Get Weird!” Join super spy Lance Sterling (Will Smith) and creative scientist Walter Beckett (Tom Holland), on an epic spy mission! With lots of laughs, action, and an important message, is Spies in Disguise kid-friendly? I’m breaking down all of the thematic elements in my Spies in Disguise Parent Review. As always, no spoilers!
Spies in Disguise Parent Review #SpiesInDisguise
Back in November when I attended The Geekly Retreat in L.A., something really cool happened. Okay. A lot of really cool things happened. BUT, I was one of the very first people to EVER see Spies in Disguise. Directors Troy Quane and Nick Bruno even made a comment that they completed the film the day before. I was sworn to secrecy about my thoughts on this movie, and I am so excited that I can FINALLY share!
Spies in Disguise opens with young Walter Beckett (Tom Holland). We see his close relationship with his mother and how she has always encouraged him to “embrace his weirdness.” Walter’s mother is a police officer, and she dies on the job. Although that is technically a “spoiler,” I feel it’s important when thinking of bringing your sensitive children to this movie…perhaps even more so if they have a parent that is a law enforcement officer.
We fast forward to 14 years later with Lance Sterling (Will Smith). Lance is a super spy and is admired by everyone. He might be just a bit conceited and full of himself, but it suits his character.
Fun Fact: Lance Sterling was designed after Will Smith. In fact, directors Troy Quane and Nick Bruno were beyond ecstatic when Will accepted the role. It has been known that Will Smith will only take on an animated role if the film represents an important message.
Will Smith and Tom Holland are the Perfect Pair
What do you get when Tom Holland and Will Smith team up in a super spy adventure? Lots of laughs….and a lot of heart! Of course there’s suspected action in an animated spy movie, however, there is a lot more dimension within this film.
Opposites attract, and they weren’t kidding! While Lance has all the right moves, knows what to say, and is super confident, Walter is the complete opposite of that — AND IT WORKS!! Together, Lance and Walter are the perfect team.
Who would have thought turning Will Smith into a pigeon was a great idea? And dare I say…he looks GOOD as a pigeon!! HA! I mean, check out his little bow tie…
Is Spies in Disguise Kid-Friendly?
Here it is. The big question. Should you take your children to see Spies in Disguise? Is it appropriate for kids? Spies in Disguise is rated PG for action, violence, and rude humor. It has a running time of 1 hour 44 minutes. I didn’t find too much down time in this movie. Maybe there were a few slow parts, but nothing too long. For the most part, you will be fully engaged in this film. The run time is also perfect for the younger audience.
Violence: There is clearly going to be violence in a spy movie. The opening sequence with Lance is pretty intense. Think lots of guns and fighting. It isn’t too graphic in that sense, though. I personally think it is okay for my 6 and 10 year old. Nothing over the top.
Language: Ohhhh there’s A LOT of potty language. Which we all know kids LOVE. Parents don’t always love this, so keep this in mind when taking your kids. While there are ZERO swear words, there is one instance where a word is bleeped out.
Adult themes: Butts, butts, and more butts. Your kids will be rolling with laughter. You might be rolling your eyes. Just be forewarned. Of course it’s all in good fun, and I was laughing right along…but we all know how kids can be!
On other instance a guard gets hit in his private area and loses his pants. Heads-up parents!!
Sensitive themes: I mentioned there is a death of a parent, and I’m mentioning it again. I know this happens in A LOT of children’s films, but it’s still never easy.
Conversation starters: SO MANY GOOD ONES! I was seriously impressed…being a spy movie and all…there are some GREAT takeaways.
“Embrace your weirdness”
The word “weird” is usually associated as a negative term. Spies in Disguise encourages kids to GET WEIRD and embrace it! Being weird is cool!! Being weird is SMART! Walter is a super smart scientist. Sure he’s not as debonair as Lance, but THAT’S OKAY! Lance couldn’t have completed this mission without Walter’s smarts. They need each other. They’re stronger TOGETHER. So “let’s get weird,” and rock it!!
Inspirational Quotes in Spies in Disguise:
Two particular quotes from Walter Beckett really stood out to me, and I feel they’re worth mentioning.
- “Find a good way to stop the bad.” – Walter
- “When we fight with fire, we all get burned.” Walter
Walter does not like violence. He lost his mother to violence. Why can’t there be a “good way” to stop the bad things? Ultimately Walter proves you don’t necessarily have to use violence to stop the bad guys. You can stop them with kindness. BOOM. Mic drop.
KINDNESS IS GREATER THAN VIOLENCE
If that’s not a powerful message, than I don’t know what is.
Spies in Disguise opens in theatres everywhere on Christmas Day. I encourage you to EMBRACE YOUR WEIRDNESS and take your children to see this family friendly film. Kids will love it, parents, you will, too. Sure there are potty jokes…and butts. But above all, this film has HEART and it has an important message for this younger generation. Let’s get weird, y’all!!
About Spies in Disguise
Blue Sky Studios presents “Spies in Disguise,” an animated spy comedy adventure set in the slick, high-octane, globe-trotting world of international espionage. Super spy Lance Sterling (Will Smith) and scientist Walter Beckett (Tom Holland) are almost exact opposites. Lance is smooth, suave and debonair. Walter is…not. But when events take an unexpected turn, this unlikely duo is forced to team up for the ultimate mission that will require an almost impossible disguise –transforming Lance into the brave, fierce, majestic…pigeon. Walter and Lance suddenly have to work as a team, or the whole world is in peril.
I hope you found my Spies in Disguise parent review helpful when deciding if your family should see this new movie. Spies in Disguise opens in U.S. theaters December 25, 2019!
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