The Lion King Movie

Updated on September 20, 2011
K.U. asks from Detroit, MI
15 answers

It's been re-released for 2 weeks only, in 3-D, and we were thinking of taking DD (age 4) to go see it - she's been to the movies several times before so she knows what it is all about and how to behave in a movie theater, but I am wondering if the movie might be too scary or sad for her. The part where Mufasa dies is what really concerns me. Would you take your child to see it and if yes, at what age? Would 4 years old be too young yet? TIA!

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So What Happened?

Just FYI - she does okay with scary parts the first time through, usually. Once she knows there are scary parts and where they are, she wants to skip over them. Like watching The Little Mermaid on DVD, I have to fast forward through any scenes with Ursula the Sea Witch. And when her father gets angry.

Just added 9/25/11: Just took her to see it this weekend - she loved it, thought it was an "awesome movie" and whole Mufasa-getting-killed bit didn't really seem to phase her. Glad we went! :)

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answers from Jacksonville on

My three year old thinks it's great! I haven't tried the movie theater with her though, that kid can't even sit still to eat! :)

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answers from Joplin on

I will happily watch it at home with my 4 year old, but no I would not make a special trip to see it in the theatre, especially not in 3D. To me it is a waste of money and I know my son would enjoy the comfort of our own livingroom more.

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answers from Lincoln on

It's really amazing how many Disney movies have deaths in them or orphans etc. Disney can be very tragic! I think my son was about 5 when he saw it. He had lots of questions, but he didn't seem too affected by it. I saw it when I was a kid and didn't even think about the part where the dad died. So I guess the sad part sticks out to some kids but not others.

I do have to say I HATE 3D movies. My son never keeps the glasses on and they give me nausea.

I don't think you will traumatize her with the Lion King. I'd say try it and have fun!

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answers from Toledo on

We saw it on Friday when it opened here. We took all 4 kids, ages 10, 7, 3 & 22 months with us. They all loved it! The baby got a bit antsy because it was close to his bedtime, but the 3 older girls were hooked. My 3 y/o got a little scared during one part, but she climbed into my lap and all was good.

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answers from Boston on

I think it has some dark moments.. when dad falls into the stampede, when scar is having his tirades in the cave with the hiennas... how did she do during toy story 3 when they were in the insinerator (sp)?? How about princess and the frog? Thinks about the movies she has seen and compare. What about renting it first or watching it on netflix before taking her to a more realistic one in a dark loud theater just to see her reaction? She might do just fine though ;)



answers from New York on

Well I took my son to see it today, who will be 4 tomorrow. He did just fine. But he is not scared easily- or at all. He loves monster and all that. We went early in the day, so I was able to explain some parts to him. The only part I think you have to worry about is when Mufasa dies. That was the first thing my son asked me about after.


answers from Kansas City on

i think it depends on the child. i can't believe she hasn't seen lion king yet! :) we have tried it a couple times, and yes, it's too scary for my son. he is going to be five next week. but my neice who is not 5 till january, watches lord of the rings, no problem. it truly just depends on the kiddo.


answers from Chicago on

My question is will he keep the glasses on (in regards to taking my son); I am not nervous about the scenes just the glasses.



answers from Provo on

I took my 7 year old son to see this movie in 3D. He loved it and danced to the singing parts and cried when Mufasa was killed in the stampede. Movies that are able to grab your emotions like that are very good. There were a lot of little kids under 2 in the theatre.



answers from Chicago on

My neighbor took her 4 yr old daughter Saturday...she said the part where simba's dad dies is intense. Also the part where Simba is grown up and fights his uncle is pretty scary. And this kid LOVED Ursula in the little mermaid, thought she was so funny. So she doesn't scare that easily.



answers from Baton Rouge on

My daughter was about 4 when she saw it, and she understood that cartoons aren't real, and cartoon characters can't really die because they're not really alive.



answers from Atlanta on

My 5 year old and 2 year old loved it -although we watched the DVD at home. I don't think it should bother a 4 year old at all -but both of my kids hate 3D movies, so you may want to see the regular version.



answers from Seattle on

When the Lion King came out in theaters the first time, I was working in a preschool center. For weeks, it was reflected in their play. Mufasa dangled from every part of the playground and got thrown from the cliff by his brother. Over and over and over again. They were very solemn about it.

Repetitive play is how children process trauma. After 9/11, I saw a similar pattern with older kids. Children set up the Twin Towers and knocked them down with planes over and over. Sometimes they tried to change the ending by setting up anti-aircraft weaponry.

In all fairness, the group of kids I was working with when Lion King came out were kids in a homeless program who had already been through a lot of very real trauma, much of it involving betrayal by family members. So perhaps they were unusually sensitive to that theme.

I did see the same group of preschoolers responding to the Aladdin movie. They were gleefully running about arguing about who got to be Aladdin and who got to be Jasmine and who got to be the genie, making elaborate costumes and pretending to steal various things. It was pretend play, inspired by a movie. Totally different from the solemn re-enactment I saw after the Lion King.

Based on my observations at that center, I would not recommend taking a young child to see Lion King in a big theater for the first time. If you feel it's appropriate for your child, watch it on DVD at home, so you can pause it and talk about how they are feeling. Watch how the story impacts their pretend play and artwork over the next week or so. If they are having fun with the hakuna matata lifestyle and/or the final battle scene, they're fine. If they're very solemn and concerned about the betrayal, I don't recommend seeing it in the theater.


answers from Los Angeles on

My almost 2.5 year old had no problems with it. He asked me "What happened?" when Mufasa died, I told him Simba's daddy died, he said, "oh" and that was it.



answers from Santa Barbara on

My EIGHTEEN year old daughter saw it last night and remembers it from the first go around on our VCR player. She cried!!! Her friend cried!! She's obviously not a little kid and she liked the 3D but she is a big softie. She loves Disney, loves animals and hates when the parents are killed off (as always).

Yes, I would take my four year old to see it.

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