The moment we’ve all been waiting for is finally here: The Hamilton movie is officially out on Disney Plus! For many of us, that means we’ve got our plans for the weekend sorted. Stock up on movie snacks, grab a bunch of tissues, and settle in for a few days of singing and crying.
People who have kids are in a slightly different situation. Since the film is on Disney Plus, many probably assume that it’s meant for children. Of course, if you know your history, you also know that the story of Alexander Hamilton involves murder, violence, and sex. So, is Hamilton kid-friendly? The answer is a bit complicated.
Is ‘Hamilton’ kid-friendly?
(Here’s an official spoiler alert for Hamilton. And also for real-life history. You’ve been warned.) The first thing parents of young kids should know about the Hamilton film on Disney Plus is that it’s rated PG-13. However, were it not for two small edits to the film, it probably would have garnered an R rating. Since Disney Plus doesn’t have any R-rated content, some cuts were made — but they weren’t due to violence or sexual content. It was all about language.
According to Lin-Manuel Miranda (creator and star of Hamilton), the Hamilton film includes every note, line, and scene of the original show — except for two words. Two F-words, that is. The MPAA has a hard and fast rule when it comes to language: If a film contains more than one F-bomb, it automatically receives an R rating.
And so, Lin says he “literally gave two f--ks so the kids could see it.” One F-bomb (in “Yorktown”) has been muted, while the other (in "Washington on Your Side”) gets the record scratch treatment. There’s still one remaining use of the F-word in the show, but it isn’t a true F-bomb — it happens in “Say No to This” when James Reynolds says, “You see, that was my wife who you decided to fuuu–" (just like that).
Which brings us to our next point. If parents aren’t bothered by a bit of salty language (the film does still include “s--t” and “bastard”), they might want to consider the actual content of the play. The show depicts a lot of heavy, serious topics that some parents may not feel comfortable exposing their children to, depending on their age.
While there are no explicit sex scenes, Alexander Hamilton does have an affair and is seen being seduced by Maria Reynolds. We see Hamilton’s son Philip murdered in a duel, and, later, Hamilton himself is killed in the same way. In the first song of the musical, someone briefly mimes committing suicide by hanging. The entire musical features frank discussions of war, violence, and death — it’s the American Revolution, after all.
For some parents, that will be a little too much. That being said, despite some of its flaws, Hamilton remains one of the most compelling modern interpretations of history, and we all know the value in learning that history. The songs are also seriously amazing, so there’s that, too.
Ultimately, parents will have to make their own call when it comes to sharing Hamilton with the kids. At the very least, it might be worth watching on your own first if your kids are especially young and / or sensitive to some of the things depicted in the show.