Common Sense Media’s weekly recommendations.


Dragon-Ball Super: Super Hero (PG-13)

Lots of fighting — and laughs — in brisk, thrilling anime.

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero” is part of a long-running anime franchise. It follows the series’s heroes as they battle an upgraded version of the villain called Cell. This review is based on the English-subtitled and English-dubbed versions, both of which include uses of “damn,” “dumba–,” “idiot,” “turd,” “screw that,” etc. Violence includes fighting, kicking and punching, plus characters getting flung through the air and smashed into things. Guns are brandished and shot, and a character is killed. A superpowered 3-year-old is flung about and shot at, but she’s never in lasting danger. Female characters — who unfortunately have a distinctly secondary role to the male characters — wear revealing outfits that outline their rear ends, and one is obsessed with “improving” her figure and features. A villain smokes cigars and blows smoke in other characters’ faces. Overall, it’s brisk, silly fun, offering fantastic animation, consistent humor, and themes of teamwork and courage. (100 minutes)

Fantasy animation has positive messages, slapstick action.

Pil’s Adventures” (a.k.a. “Pil”) is a skillfully made fantasy animated adventure, set in a medieval town, with slapstick action and some moments of peril. The title character, Pil (voiced by Eleanor Noble), is a strong girl role model — brave, clever, welcoming and a good leader. She is an orphan who steals food to eat. She sets out to help the town’s prince when she learns of an assassination attempt by the current ruler, Lord Tristan (Terrence Scammell). The movie has fantasy and magic, with big beasts and a potentially unsettling transformation sequence in which a man transforms into a “chickat” (part cat, part chicken). The movie’s slapstick violence is well crafted and raises a laugh. Stronger violence includes moments of threat, with a character about to be executed, a main character shot with a crossbow bolt and another falling from a high bridge. But all these characters are ultimately fine. The action scenes are exciting and always mixed with jokes. There is a small amount of rude humor, which includes a dog urinating, some mentions of unicorn poo and a running joke with adult male characters in their underwear. (89 minutes)

Extraordinary Attorney Woo (TV-14)

Charming Korean drama about lawyer with autism.

Extraordinary Attorney Woo” is a Korean series about a young lawyer with autism. Each episode follows a single case that Woo Young-woo (Park Eun-bin) works on. The representation of Woo’s autism can be seen as somewhat over the top and played for laughs (for example, when she repeatedly gets stuck in a rotating door). But it’s also heartfelt, as when she faces the challenge of riding the subway with the help of whale songs on her headphones. Language includes “b—–d,” “whore” and “damn.” There are some violent moments, like when a character hits another with a heavy iron. (16 roughly 70-minute episodes)

Sumptuous fantasy drama adaptation has violence, scares.

The Sandman” is a gothic Netflix fantasy series based on the graphic novels by acclaimed author Neil Gaiman. It follows Dream (Tom Sturridge), also known as Morpheus, the king of all dreams who rules the mythical land of the Dreaming. Violence includes spooky spells, guns and threats of abuse, and an animal is shot in a bloody manner. Body horror includes a shot of eyes cut out of a face. A mythical character is nude and held in captivity. Strong language includes “f—,” “p—” and other vulgarity. (10 roughly 45-minute episodes)

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