Is 'Wonder Park' Appropriate For Children Under 5? Here's What Parents Should Know About The Animated Movie
While you may expect all animated films to be appropriate for young children, that is simply not the case. Take the 2016 R-rated Sausage Party, for example; it's far from Finding Nemo. After watching Paramount Picture's latest animated movie trailer, you may be wondering if Wonder Park is appropriate for children, specifically under 5. Ultimately, parental discretion is key to determining which movies are appropriate for which children, but there are some factors that you may want to keep in mind when deciding if you'll hit the theaters with your little one for this movie.
Wonder Park is an animated adventure film set in a magical amusement park, according to Deadline, and follows the story of a young girl named June. June discovers a magical theme park in the woods that resembles one she and her mom designed together. But all isn't as it seems and she sets out — along with some furry friends — to save it from a darkness that threatens to overtake it.
Common Sense Media reported that the MPAA rated Wonder Park PG for Parental Guidance due to some mild thematic elements and action. Additionally, Parent Previews warned that some of the action-packed sequences, peril, and heavy themes might be too much for the youngest viewers. Some of the heavy themes they may be referring to, as Variety reported, is June's mother falling ill and needing to have treatment.
There is no sexual content, profanity, or alcohol and drug use, but the violence may be of concern to some parents. According to Parent Preview, the violent scenes include "infrequent portrayals of hand-to-hand violence, most in a slapstick context" and portrayals of peril to main characters and mild frightening scenes.
A couple of kids have already given Wonder Park their stamp of approval. Ken Jeong, who lends his voice to a beaver named Cooper, told Variety that his twin daughters really enjoyed the film. "They loved how family-based it was. A lot of the things I don’t think about as an actor — the imagery, the backdrop, the flourishes, things I have nothing to do with — they notice that," he told Variety. "Sometimes as a narcissistic actor I only focus on my performance, but when you’re looking at it from an appropriate lens, we’re just palettes of paint on the whole rainbow of colors."
A few other kids weighed in on the movie, namely the two young actresses who voice the main character: 12-year-old Sophia Mali — who played the younger version of June — and 15-year-old Brianna Denski — who voiced the older June for much of the film both told Variety how much Wonder Park means to them. Both girls are making their feature film voice acting debuts in the movie and told Variety that they couldn't be happier. “I love voiceover, it’s fun to play characters with big personalities,” Mali told the publication. “I love playing a character with a big imagination, I was like that when I was younger.”
Parents will have to decide for themselves if this film is something they are comfortable sharing with their children. But the MPAA rating and parental reviews seem to suggest that as long you're OK with some mild violence and peril — all in the triumph of good over evil — then you should be good to go. Wonder Park hits theaters on Friday, March 15.