Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse Spider-Man has so many great themes that can serve as meaningful conversation starters with your kids. Each time I’ve seen the movie I have gotten more out of it.
1. The Importance of Mentoring
In Spider-Verse the Older version of Peter B. Parker as Spiderman has the opportunity to mentor the younger and newest Spiderman, Miles Morales. The two shared a unique bond of knowing what it was like to share similar experiences. Peter was hesitant in the beginning but over time through mentoring his vision, passion, and purpose was renewed by helping Miles begin to see his potential.
Another character in the movie is Miles’ uncle Aaron who is more of a complex character. He has a close relationship with Miles but he has also made some poor choices.
Miles’ relationship with his dad also becomes closer throughout the film as he begins to understand that his dad wants to help keep him safe and experience his fullest potential in life.
Each of us can influence someone to make good or bad choices. It’s important to reach out to someone farther along than you and ask for help.
Everyone can also make a difference and be an inspiration to someone no matter what their age.
Ask: Who is someone that you admire that you could reach out to? What do you admire about them?
2. Dealing With Losing Someone You Love
In Spider-Verse two important characters died in the movie. Each character deals with that loss in their life moving forward. Death is a hard reality of life that can still be painful years after that person has gone.
Ask: How did you handle losing someone you cared about and how does it affect how you live your life today?
3. Accepting Social Responsibility
Each character had an opportunity to do their part to make things better. The movie challenges and encourages viewers that it’s important to get involved when we see something that is unjust and that “anyone can wear the mask” and make a difference.
Ask: What is something in the world that you see that feels unjust and what could you personally do to make it better?
4. Discovering Your Unique Gifts and Talents
During the film, Miles discovered that he had some special unique powers that the other Spiderman characters did not. We each have different natural abilities, gifts and life skills. Miles discovered that he needed to be Spiderman in his own style. We were not made to do things exactly like someone else.
Ask: What are some of the things you do well? What is something that you would like to try or get better at?
(Make friends easily, great at sports, enjoy drawing, love to sing, play music)
5. The Power of Teamwork
In the movie, there was a lot of teamwork between the characters from the Spider-Verse (an alternate older Peter Parker, Spider-Woman, 1930s-styled Spider-Man Noir, an anime version “Peni Parker”, Spider-Ham “Peter Porker”). They worked together to defeat Kingpin and the other bad guys. They shared a special bond of each being a unique version of Spiderman and put their egos aside for a greater purpose.
Ask: What is a goal that you want to accomplish that will need to include other people?
What age is appropriate for Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse?
The movie is rated PG and recommended for ages 8 and up. I’ve had a few friends ask me about younger kids and I’ve asked them if their kids have seen any of the other Marvel movies that are PG 13. If they have already seen other Marvel movies, I don’t think they will have a problem.
They will be exposed to two characters dying in the movie and the plot with different dimensions might be a little confusing for younger audiences. There are also several scenes where the amazing animation style is really intense and colorful which could trigger kids who have sensory issues.
I asked my friend who brought her teenage son with special needs her thoughts (he does not have sensory issues) and she agreed it might be a bit too intense for those that do. It wouldn’t hurt to watch it first and then decide.
As a mom of teenagers, I appreciated how the film perfectly showed both sides of the dynamic of parents love and boundaries for their kid and their teenager’s struggle to be seen as more grown up.
Overall I think that Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse it’s a great film that is both cool enough for my teen and tween, that contains several great messages to inspire kids as well.
*All animation images were provided by Sony Pictures.
I attended a press junket for the movie Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. You can read more about that here.
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