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Avatar: The Way of Water | 2022 | PG-13 | – 4.6.5

content-ratingsWhy is “Avatar: The Way of Water” rated PG-13? The MPAA rating has been assigned for “sequences of strong violence and intense action, partial nudity and some strong language.” The evaluation includes skimpy outfits worn by humanoid people that reveal nudity throughout the film, some flirting and expressions of love, many fights between an invading group and native occupants of a planet that lead to death and bloodshed including an extended scene of a teen dying from his wounds after being shot, a few fights between humans and fish ending in the death of the fish for monetary gain, arguments between adults and teens, and at least 1 F-word and other strong language. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.

In the second chapter to 2009’s Avatar, Jake Sully’s (Sam Worthington) Na’vi family must defend themselves and their people, when returning off-world forces threaten their existence once again. Also with Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang, Kate Winslet, Cliff Curtis, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Edie Falco, Brendan Cowell, Jemaine Clement, Jamie Flatters, Britain Dalton, Trinity Jo-Li Bliss, Jack Champion, Bailey Bass, Duane Evans Jr. and Filip Geljo. Directed by James Cameron. [Running Time: 3:12]

Avatar: The Way of Water SEX/NUDITY 4

 – A fully nude humanoid woman is shown floating in a stasis pod (we see bare breasts, abdomen, legs and a hip/buttock). Both male and female humanoid characters are shown wearing minimal clothing and the tops that women and young women wear reveal partial breasts, abdomens, backs, legs and buttocks, and the males’ bare chests, abdomens, legs and buttocks. Several scenes show pregnant humanoid women with their bare abdomens visible. A fully nude humanoid newborn is shown in a few scenes (no genitals are evident; we see a tail).
 A humanoid husband and his wife lie together and she rests her head on his chest. A humanoid teen boy admires a humanoid teen girl as she gets out of the ocean.
 Humanoid teen boys and a human teen boy talk about who a humanoid teen girl’s father might be and they joke about it in front of her.

Avatar: The Way of Water VIOLENCE/GORE 6

 – Many armed soldiers surround people and threaten them for information; they use tasers to zap them and a flying creature is shot and killed (it falls dead in the water and we see blood) as a humanoid woman is held on the ground with a gun to her head and the soldiers set the village on fire before leaving. A giant fish swims around a large ocean vessel, launches into the air and crashes down onto the deck, where soldiers onboard are thrown and crushed; one man’s arm is caught under a cable pulled tight and the man is thrown with his arm separating from his body (we see the separation and blood spurts). A giant ocean vessel with other smaller vessels onboard hunt a giant fish: we see the process of separating a fish using explosives launched into the water and shocking the fish, tagging one fish with a tracker, chasing it and shooting it with a harpoon and then shooting flotation devices into it and forcing it to the surface where it is killed (we see the fish with blood in the water around it and its calf swimming around it and making mournful sounds and we see this process again).
 Humanoid people riding and flying on animals attack a train track and blow it up causing the cars to derail and blow up, while flying vehicles are shot out of the sky and crash to the ground in flames (we see a pilot shot with an arrow). We see a video of an attack that leaves a man killed by an arrow. Helicopter pilots are shot through windshields with arrows in a few scenes and the helicopters crash and explode. A giant ship explodes and lists, we see several men on fire and screaming and others motionless as the soldiers are attacked by humanoids using spears and arrows to kill them (we see some bloody wounds); a soldier holds a knife to a humanoid teen girl’s throat threatening to kill her. A humanoid man and a soldier fight using knives; they throw each other, punch each other, and end up underwater where one holds the other around the throat until he drowns.
 A teen boy is strapped into a chair and his eyes are held open with clamps as bright lights spin around his head and a woman asks him questions trying to get information about the whereabouts of others; the boy screams, his nose bleeds and pleads for it to stop. A humanoid teen boy swims inside the open mouth of a giant fish toward a glowing feathery tendril that the boy connects to, and sees the fish’s memory of being attacked and its mother being murdered along with many humanoid people.
 Two teen humanoids fight with several armed soldiers: they run through a ship and are shot at, one teen shoots back at them and they jump overboard to safety (one teen has a bloody chest wound and we see the wound through the chest and back with blood as he dies). Two teen humanoids are involved in a ground fight with enemy soldiers: one teen is reluctant saying, “They’ll skin us,” and one ends up knocked unconscious briefly (he is carried to safety) and the other boy has a bloody wound on his abdomen. A couple of humanoids attack invading soldiers: several are struck with arrows, and a few are struck with an axe (no blood is evident). A teen boy shoots an invader in the back and rapid-fire weapons are shot into trees trying to hit him and others. A soldier holds a gun to a humanoid teen boy’s head and threatens to execute him. A humanoid woman holds a knife to the throat of a teen boy, slashes his chest (we see blood) and raises the knife over him (she does not stab him).
 Several humanoid children are held hostage and picked up in flying vessels. A teen boy runs away from invaders and falls down a hill (we see him unconscious and with a bloody cut on his shoulder as he is carried away). A humanoid man grabs a young humanoid girl and carries her away and a teen boy is grabbed by the hair during an encounter with an enemy. A bright star appears in the sky and humanoid people become concerned about approaching ships that burn large swaths of a forest and clear paths for vehicles and robotic devices; we see animals running from the flames and some are engulfed. Humanoid children track an invading force and watch them when they discover an abandoned outpost with a robot frame on the ground and what we see later is a dead body inside it with an arrow still in the remains (we see a human skull as it is crushed by someone). A humanoid teen punches another humanoid teen in the face three times, the second one hits the first with its tail and they wrestle briefly (one is left with a bloody nose). Three humanoid teens take another humanoid teen past the safety of a reef and leave him there to fish; the teen is chased by a giant fish and after his flying creature is bitten on the tail (we see blood) the boy hides among coral as the fish lunges for him and breaks it, nearly catching him and when the boy cannot hold his breath any longer and he surfaces the fish charges him and is slammed into a rock formation by an even larger fish saving the boy. Submarines chase humanoid teens through the ocean; one young girl falls off the swimming creature she is riding and three other teens are caught in a net and lifted onto the deck of a ship where they each snarl at their captors and swing daggers at them, but they are handcuffed to a railing. A large flying creature bites a soldier as it swoops over a ship (the man screams and flails). A soldier wakes up on a medical table and punches several others standing in the room; they fight and struggle to hold the first one down and we see one with a bloody nose. A humanoid man is slashed across the chest with a dagger (we see a trickle of blood). A humanoid teen pulls a harpoon out of a giant fish’s fin. A humanoid teen girl has a seizure while underwater and nearly drowns; we see another humanoid performing mouth-to-mouth and after a medical exam, and we are told that she had an epileptic seizure. A teen boy uses a fire extinguisher to disable soldiers and their equipment on a ship causing it to speed into a rock outcropping before he is grabbed and held by others.
 A man tries to bond with a flying creature, the creature snarls and bares its teeth at the man, the man punches the creature in the face, wrestles with it and climbs on its back; the creature dives off a cliff and others think the man is dead, but the creature flies back up with the man on its back. A humanoid boy and a giant fish swim together in several scenes; the fish throws the boy in the air off its tail, and splashes him with liquid from its blowhole. A flying creature picks up a humanoid girl and drops her on a ship’s deck.
 A teen boy hides under a table when a humanoid man enters a room and questions him; the boy tries to run away, but is picked up and placed on the table. A humanoid woman pokes an unconscious teen girl with tines and performs a healing ritual over her and the girl revives and cries. A giant drill and syringe are used to drill to a giant fish’s brain and extract a liquid that is highly prized. A young humanoid boy shoots a fish with an arrow and pulls the arrow out (we see some blood).
 Humanoids bond with swimming and flying creatures and the first time a man and a teen boy try to bond with swimming creatures, they are both knocked off their backs when the creatures dive and swim very fast (no injuries are evident). A humanoid family fly on the backs of winged creatures and we see them being pelted by rain and flying close to the ocean. Humanoid children run along a thick twisted vine as we see armed soldiers being dropped into the area. A humanoid teen girl sleeps among tall grass and floating glowing creatures move around her. A family of humanoids encounters a colony of other humanoids and they negotiate being able to stay, with some members protesting. A humanoid teen girl hugs a stasis pod with a humanoid woman floating inside and we are told this is her mother.
 Several humanoid teens mock other humanoid teens for the difference in appearance of their tails, arms and legs. A humanoid male tells another humanoid male and his family that they cannot be permitted to stay in their colony because, “We cannot let you bring your war here.” A woman grieves and cries over a dead sea creature. A humanoid woman says jokingly that when she and her husband met, she was trying to kill him. We hear that a human child was orphaned and left on a planet and that he was raised by the “lab guys.” We hear that a planet’s immune response deploys creatures that attack an invading force. Two teen boys argue in a few scenes. Two groups of humanoid people argue and one makes threatening gestures toward the other. A humanoid woman tells her son that she did not imagine wanting to “pluck the eyeballs out of my youngest son” after he does something dangerous. A man threatens to give a teen boy a “wuppin.” A man says that he wants to “hunt down and kill” another man. A humanoid man reprimands his teenage sons in several scenes. Siblings argue and struggle over items in a few scenes; two declare, “I hate you” in one scene. Two humanoid women snarl at each other after their sons get into trouble. Children wrestle and play fight in several scenes. A teen girl says, “I would drink acid” at the prospect of something unpleasant to her. A man makes a remark about another man having a “Litter of half-breeds.”

Avatar: The Way of Water LANGUAGE 5

 – At least 1 F-word, 2 obscene hand gestures, 1 sexual reference, 14 scatological terms, 7 anatomical terms, 14 mild obscenities, name-calling (jar head, princess, feral, slow, weak, demon, alien, cheeky bugger, bastards, demon, outcast, scum, freak, cupcake, crazy, useless, monkey boy, gross, half-breeds, buttercup, hostiles, moron, insane, demon blood, stupid, knucklehead, cry baby), exclamations (hey, calm down, stay calm, stop, shut-up, be nice), 1 religious profanity (GD), 3 religious exclamations (e.g. Jesus, Holy [scatological term deleted]). | profanity glossary |

Avatar: The Way of Water SUBSTANCE USE

 – A man says, “That’s why I drink” (we do not see him drinking).

Avatar: The Way of Water DISCUSSION TOPICS

 – Family, respecting nature, invasion, protecting one’s family, revenge, time, shame, disappointment, betrayal, loyalty, fatherhood, mining, colonizing other planets, racism, memories, consequences, clones, death of loved ones, adapting, happiness, being different, sanctuary.

Avatar: The Way of Water MESSAGE

 – Killing only brings more killing.


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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