Disneynature’s Monkey Kingdom hits theaters Earth Day (April 17th) 2015. I was given the opportunity to see a preview of it. Let’s start out by saying “Oh my! Cuteness overload!” Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s go on to the real review…
Though I’m not required to write a positive review about the movie, I have nothing but positive things to say about it. It’s obviously cute, but it’s also extremely funny, sad at times, visually stunning, and somewhat educational. Kids will like the “humanness” of the monkeys, adults will like the subtle adult humor thrown in.
Monkey Kingdom follows a family of macaque monkeys through their day to day life in a hierarchy society. More specifically, it follows Maya, a lower-born, in her journey to make a better life for her son. I was amazed at how much Maya’s society mirrors our own. You really feel for Maya in her struggles and cheer for her in her accomplishments.
I’d say this movie is perfect to see in theaters for anyone in first grade and older. It is a documentary and I think younger kids may get a bit bored after a while. You can only handle watching cute monkeys for so long if you don’t understand the narrated plot of the movie. It’s definitely worth seeing on DVD for the younger kids though as they will enjoy the monkey antics.
Fair warning: two monkeys do die in this film. However, they filmed it with dignity and you don’t see their actual death nor do you see any gore. You simply see one being carried off and another laying like it’s sleeping. Younger children should have no issues with the death scenes.
If you’re looking for some unique family entertainment this weekend, Disneynature’s Monkey Kingdom is definitely worth the price of a movie ticket. For every ticket purchased opening week of the movie, Disney will make a donation to help support the monkeys in their natural habitat. It’s a win-win for everyone!