September Dawn

2007 R 1h 51m DVD

September Dawn

2007 R 1h 51m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
This tragic tale juxtaposes a fictional love story and a fact-based account of the 1857 Mountain Meadows Massacre, an act of religious fanaticism that claimed the lives of as many as 120 westward-bound settlers -- men, women and children.
Jon Voight, Trent Ford, Tamara Hope, Terence Stamp, Krisinda Cain, Shaun Johnston, Franklin E. Levinson, Jon Gries, Lolita Davidovich, Taylor Handley, Daniel Libman, Huntley Ritter, Dean Cain
Christopher Cain
Widescreen Anamorphic 1.78:1
English, French, Spanish (Neutral)
English: Dolby Digital 5.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1
R - Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian. Contains some adult material. Parents are urged to learn more about the film before taking their young children with them.
age 16+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 16+
age 16+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that this movie revolves around a very controversial -- and extremely brutal -- massacre that took place in 1857. The film presents most of its Mormon characters as righteous, bloodlust-driven zealots who planned and ultimately carried out the attack, which left an entire wagon train dead. The slow-motion scenes of the event itself are explicit and bloody, featuring images of young children and women being shot, chopped at with hatchets, and hit by arrows. One religious ritual scene shows a young woman nude from the front (she's covered by a gauzy curtain); another scene shows a girl with her shoulder bared as she's bathing in a river (which entrances her young man).

Sexual Content

References to multiple wives (though viewers don't see them); mentions of "whoring" and a woman's "masculine" behavior as an "abomination." A young woman appears nude (full frontal, through a mostly obscuring gauzy curtain) during a religious ritual; Jonathan finds Emily bathing in the river -- she slips down her slip strap and he gasps, though viewers only see her shoulder.


Lots of violence, especially the massacre near the film's end, when women and children are killed in very bloody slow motion scenes that include hacking, shooting, and grisly use of hatchets. Flashbacks show looting and burning, as well as throats being cut; another flashback shows Arkansas townsfolk shooting Joseph Smith and his brother (body appears in a bloody puddle). A dead woman's body floats in a river. Jonathan fights the Mormons who restrain him (on his father's orders); he's chained in a cell. Micah repeatedly smashes a body with his rifle, then appears covered in blood; victims include young children and women. Samuelson shoots his son's fiancée; she dies in front of Jonathan, blood seeping from her chest.


One use of "damn."

Social Behavior

The movie portrays Mormons as devious murderers who dupe a wagon train party and the local Native Americans before masterminding a brutal massacre.


Not applicable

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

Mention of "drinking" in California (a state apparently full of vice...).

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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