Story

Escape from Planet Earth is an animated science fiction movie about two alien astronauts, Gary (voiced by Rob Corddry) and his brother Scorch (Brendan Fraser). Gary and Scorch lead all the space expeditions from their planet Baab. Scorch is more popular and heroic, famous because of the expeditions that he completes. Gary is the easily forgotten brains behind Scorch’s brawn. Jealous and competitive, Gary struggles to relate to his brother. During one of their many fights, Gary quits the job he loves at mission control.

In Gary’s absence, Scorch agrees to lead a solo mission to the ‘dark planet’ – Earth. When Scorch arrives on Earth, he finds the inhabitants unfriendly and is captured by the aggressive military Commander, General Shanker (William Shatner). Scorch is taken to Area 51 and kept as an alien prisoner.

The inhabitants of Baab are shocked when their most famous and beloved hero vanishes. Gary’s son Kip (Jonathon Morgan Heit) is particularly devastated by the news of his uncle’s disappearance. Wanting to be as courageous as his uncle, Kip sets out to lead a mission to Earth to save him. Gary and his wife, Kira (Sarah Jessica Parker), foil Kip’s plan at the last moment. But Gary is inspired by Kip’s bravery and sets out to save his brother and prove to the world that he can be a hero too.

Themes

Aliens; a child running away from home; kidnapping

Violence

This movie has some violence. For example:

  • During a mission Scorch is chased by baby-eating ‘narlaps’, which are scary and slimy aliens. Scorch and the babies he is rescuing escape unharmed.
  • A montage of real footage that shows human cruelty includes a plane crash, war and guns, people being shot, and Hitler.
  • Scorch falls for a blow-up doll. When it is shot by a dart bullet, Scorch is upset because he thinks the doll has died.
  • When Scorch is captured by humans, a fight breaks out. Scorch punches and throws the humans until the humans shoot him with a dart gun. Captain Shanker hits Scorch over the head after he has collapsed.
  • When Gary reaches Earth, his space pod begins a self-destruct sequence while he is inside. Gary escapes a moment before the pod blows up.
  • There are many scenes of people being shot by dart guns.
  • A woman is vaporised by a laser gun.
  • A massive dog-like alien eats another smaller alien and threatens to eat Gary and Scorch. They get away.
  • A fight between the aliens and the humans involves punching, throwing, laser guns and freeze guns. Aliens freeze humans and thrown them to the ground unconscious.
  • Aliens are made to wear an electric shock collar. They get shocked if they don’t obey the humans.
  • Shanker is building a peace shield, which is actually a giant gun designed to destroy the universe.
  • Gary punches Shanker in the face and he falls to the ground.
  • Spaceships fight and chase each other. Two fighter planes smash into a cliff face during the chase.

Content that may disturb children

Under 8

In addition to the violent scenes mentioned above, this movie has some scenes that could scare or disturb children under eight years. For example:

  • Two of the main characters are trapped in glass cylinders, which are filled with water. The characters are underwater. They can’t breathe and seem to drown when the water is frozen. Later in the movie they’re released and are alive and well.
  • Three characters fall from a spaceship. They say their last farewells because they think they’re about to die, but they’re saved at the last minute by other aliens. 

From 8-13

Younger children in this age group are also likely to be disturbed by the scenes mentioned above. 

Over 13

Children in this age group are unlikely to be disturbed by anything in this movie. 

Sexual references

This movie has some sexual references. For example:

  • Several scenes show suggestive behaviour and flirting, including eye fluttering, seductive posing, air kissing and sexy clothing.
  • Characters talk about an intergalactic dating service and an intergalactic relationship.
  • Gary has a beautiful wife. Someone asks him, ‘How did you hook that up?’
  • Rena and Shanker do online dating. 

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

Characters talk about a sugary alien drink, which is 80% sugar. The drink is mentioned, drunk and marketed throughout the movie. 

Nudity and sexual activity

This movie has some nudity and sexual activity. For example:

  • Several scenes show Kira and Gary kissing passionately. Scorch and his girlfriend also kiss passionately.
  • A man wears just a towel, which gets blown off him, but we don’t see anything. 

Product placement

This movie has some product placement. Products shown include 7-Eleven, 7-Eleven slurpees, Apple, Facebook and Google. 

Coarse language

This movie has some coarse language and name-calling that children might copy. 

Ideas to discuss with your children

Escape from Planet Earth is an animated children’s science fiction movie. It’s about two alien brothers on an unexpected mission to save the universe and prove their loyalty to each other.

Violent and scary scenes make it unsuitable for children under five years, and we recommend parental guidance for children aged 5-10 years. There are some scary characters, scenes of people fighting with aliens, and scenes that show both people and aliens in danger and being killed.

The main messages from this movie are about the bond between family members and about having the courage to stand up for what is right.

Values in this movie that you could reinforce with your children include courage, bravery, kindness and acceptance of everyone, regardless of their differences.

You could also talk with your children about:

  • how the humans behave when the aliens come to Earth. Do you think that this is how humans would react? Do they treat the aliens fairly?
  • how Shanker and Rena behave when they do online dating. What are the dangers of online dating? How are the online personalities presented by Shanker and Rena different from their true selves?