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African Cats | 2011 | G | - 0.5.1

A Disney Nature documentary that follows a pride of lions and a family of cheetahs as they try to survive in the African plains. Narrated by Samuel L. Jackson. Directed by Alastair Fothergill & Keith Scholey. [1:29]

SEX/NUDITY 0 - We see lion cubs playing as the narrator explains that lionesses had given birth to a lion's babies. We see cheetah cubs nursing from the mother cheetah.

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VIOLENCE/GORE 5 - We see lions and cheetahs hunting for food on different occasions including the following: Several lionesses chase zebras and one of the zebras kicks one of the lionesses (she is later seen injured and limping from being kicked); one of the lionesses pounces on the haunches of a zebra, bringing it to the ground and we then see the lionesses eating the bloody zebra, the sounds of bones snapping are heard, and a lion chases off the lionesses (a small amount of blood is seen smeared on the lioness' legs and mouth); several cheetahs chase a wildebeest; a lion corners and then pounces on a wildebeest; a cheetah races after a gazelle, we see the gazelle running and then tripping and the cheetah pounces on the fallen gazelle and bites its neck (no blood is visible); a lioness leaps and traps a wildebeest, and it falls to the ground (no blood is visible); and four cheetahs chase a gazelle, and one pounces on it and it falls to the ground (no blood is visible).
 A lioness struggles to walk, and the narrator explains that she is leaving the pride to die in peace after being injured in a fight with a lion, after initially being injured from a kick from a zebra; we later see her dead body lying among trees (no blood is visible).
 Several lionesses attack four lions, they growl and the lions roar and swat at the lionesses; the lionesses attack one of the lions, cuts are seen covering his torso, haunches and legs but the narrator explains that they later allow the lions to rule their pride. Two lions attack another lion, we hear growling and see the lions swinging at one another and trying to bite one another; the solo lion walks away as the narrator explains that he has been forced away. Several lionesses attack two lions, they growl and pounce on the lions, biting their haunches, back and ears, and the two lions are chased away; the narrator explains that there are injuries and some of the lion cubs are missing (we later see a cub reuniting with her injured mother).
 We see the aftermath of a fight between two lions and several lionesses: the narrator explains that a cub with its eye missing (a small amount of blood is seen matted on its fur) has been injured and a lioness has been injured (we see a bloody cut on her back and she struggles to walk).
 The narrator explains, as we see night fall and hear the growls of hyenas, that two cheetah cubs had been separated from their mother and are "gone forever," implying they had been killed by the hyenas. A lion runs away as four lions approach, and the narrator explains he is leaving the pride because they would kill him if he remained. Three lions fight, swatting at one another and growling; they then walk together.
 We see several lionesses on a river shore as a crocodile approaches; a lion growls at the crocodile, they snap at one another, the lion growls and the crocodile disappears into the water. A pack of hyenas approach a mother cheetah and her three cubs, and the cheetah hisses as the narrator explains that the cheetah had lost two cubs to the hyenas already and would defend her cubs to the death; the hyenas circle the cheetah, the cheetah pounces and the hyenas back down. A mother cheetah steers two lions away from her five cheetah cubs by snapping at them, chasing them and hissing at a lion that tries to swat at her; the two lions attempt to chase her but give up and walk away. Three male cheetahs approach a mother cheetah and her three cubs, the mother cheetah pounces on one of the cheetahs, they growl and all three attack her, bite her and push her to the ground; she stands up unharmed. The narrator explains that male cheetahs will occasionally attack cubs, and we see three male cheetahs approach three cubs; the cubs growl and hiss until the three male cheetahs back down and walk away. Four cheetahs approach a lioness with three cubs, and a group of lionesses surround the cheetahs, which are quickly chased off. A lioness is surrounded by water buffalos, they try to gore her with their tusks, and she walks away unharmed. Two crocodiles snap at one another.
 Throughout the movie, we see a lion with a chipped tooth, and part of its fang hangs broken from its mouth; a narrator explains that it's a battle scar from a fight. A pride abandons an injured lioness having trouble walking; the lioness cries out, and along with her cub eventually catches up with the remainder of the pride.
 A narrator explains that if a lion overthrows the leader of a pride, it will kill the baby lion cubs. A narrator explains that younger lions in a pride are at risk of being killed by older lions when they overthrow the leader. A narrator explains that a new lion took over a pride and forced out the younger male lions; we see two young male lions struggle to cross a river, as they are almost attacked by crocodiles. A narrator explains that a young lioness was forcibly separated from her pride; we later see her reintegrated. A narrator explains that a lion cub will die if not adopted by a pride when its mother passes away; we then see the lion cub adopted and nurtured by the pride. The narrator explains that the mothers in a group of lions and a mother cheetah are "battling forces" that could destroy them and their young. A narrator explains that a river's rapids are strong enough that it could bring down even the strongest lion. A narrator explains that lions are eating a hippo found dead on a river shore; we see the lionesses tearing at the body of the rotting hippo and a small amount of blood is visible on the carcass.
 An ostrich playfully chases after a cheetah after it snaps at it. Three cheetahs chase two jackals until they chase back. Two cheetahs chase a serval cat. Two aardvarks playfully wrestle one another as cheetahs watch. Baby lion cubs playfully meow and bite one another. A lion cub playfully bites its mother's tail. Cheetah cubs playfully tackle and bite one another. A lion cub playfully knocks around a turtle, it chews on the turtle's shell and we later see the turtle unharmed, and struggling to flip up.

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LANGUAGE 1 - Name-calling (bully).

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SUBSTANCE USE - None.

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DISCUSSION TOPICS - African wildlife including cheetahs, lions, wildebeests, hippos, crocodiles, hyenas, water buffalos, gazelles, and serval cats, courage, mothers in the wild, rivalries, lion prides, single mothers/raising children on your own, comforting the injured, abandonment, migration, separation anxiety, similarities between humans and animals, death of a child, siestas, bravery.
MESSAGE - We learn a lot about relationships and interaction from observing animals in their natural habitat.
CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.



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