Story

Spectre is the fourth James Bond movie starring Daniel Craig. The story follows on from Skyfall and the death of the original M. A message from the original M (Judi Dench) sends Bond on a rogue mission across Europe, Mexico and Africa, during which he discovers the existence of criminal organisation known as SPECTRE.

In London, C (Andrew Scott) is trying to close down the spy program and form a new centre of national security. Bond convinces Q (Ben Whishaw), M (Ralph Fiennes) and Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) to defy orders and help him uncover and eliminate the head of SPECTRE. In his travels, Bond meets Dr Madeleine Swann (Lea Seydoux) who teaches him the secrets of this criminal organisation.

Themes

Terrorism; crime; death; death of a parent; suicide

Violence

Spectre has frequent bloody and brutal violence, including torture. This violence is sometimes glamourised and shown as a way to solve problems. For example:

  • Bond shoots and kills several people, and there are several big shoot-outs involving Bond and his opponents.
  • There are several brutal fight scenes where Bond and his enemies punch and kick each other. These scenes feature blood and cuts.
  • A woman slaps Bond across the face.
  • A man uses his thumbs to gouge out another man’s eyes. Then he breaks the man’s neck.
  • In a very disturbing and gruesome scene, Blofeld tortures Bond by strapping him into a chair and drilling needles into his brain. Bond screams in pain. 
  • Bond blows up Blofeld’s facility. As a result, Blofeld loses an eye and is badly disfigured with a big scar across his face.
  • Dr Swann’s father commits suicide by shooting himself in the head. Blofeld shows Dr Swann a video of her father’s suicide as a way of torturing her.

Content that may disturb children

Under 5
In addition to the violent scenes mentioned above, Spectre has some scenes in this movie that will scare or disturb children under five years. For example:

  • The movie starts at a Day of the Dead parade where everyone is dressed in masks and skeleton costumes.
  • Bond often does very dangerous things, like walking along the ledges of tall buildings and crashing cars.
  • The bad guys talk about blowing up a stadium full of people.
  • A building explodes and Bond is almost crushed when it collapses.
  • Two helicopters almost crash into crowds of innocent people.
  • The movie is full of dark, shadowy locations to build suspense. People often jump out of the shadows to attack each other.
  • There are many explosions in the movie, including when cars or helicopters crash.
  • The criminals try to kidnap Bond, Dr Swann and Q.
  • Blofeld ties Dr Swann to an explosive device and hides her in a building. Bond must find her in time. This scene is very tense and scary.

From 5-8
Children in this age group will also be disturbed by the scenes described above.

From 8-13
Children in this age group are also likely to be disturbed by the scenes described above.

Over 13
Younger children in this age group might also be disturbed by some of the scenes described above.

Sexual references

Spectre has some sexual references. For example:

  • Bond flirts with several women.
  • Dr Swann wears a sexually revealing dress. She catches Bond staring at her. He suggests that if she didn’t want him staring she shouldn’t dress like that.
  • There is a man in Moneypenny’s bed.

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

Spectre shows some use of substances. For example:

  • Adults frequently drink in social situations.
  • Bond requests his classic ‘shaken not stirred’ martini.
  • When a doctor asks Bond how much he drinks, Bond replies ‘too much’.
  • Adults drink as a way of dealing with their problems.

Nudity and sexual activity

Spectre has some nudity and sexual activity. For example:

  • Bond passionately kisses three women. 
  • Two scenes show Bond starting to undress a woman. It looks like they’re about to have sex, but this isn’t shown.
  • The opening sequence is Bond and a woman naked and kissing while an octopus wraps itself around them. The opening sequence also includes naked women dancing around Bond. The blurry style of the sequence means we don’t see explicit nudity, but it’s obvious that the bodies are nude. 

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in Spectre: Aston Martin, Jaguar, Rolls Royce, Range Rover, Omega watches, Sony and Heineken beer.

Coarse language

Spectre has some coarse language.

Ideas to discuss with your children

Spectre is a fast-paced action movie that continues the James Bond tradition of fast cars and violent thrills. 

This movie has violent and disturbing scenes, which include torture and eye-gouging. It also has sexual content. Therefore we don’t recommend the movie for children under 14 years, and we strongly recommend parental guidance for slightly older teenagers.

The main messages from this movie are that loyalty is rewarded and that governments shouldn’t have absolute power. Values in this movie that you could reinforce with your children include bravery and loyalty.

This movie could also give you the chance to talk with your children about the real-life consequences of solving problems with violence, as Bond does in the movie.