I was able to see The Nutcracker this week. I have never been to a live performance of it, but I have seen it countless times on TV. It was beautiful, but I have to say that I was disappointed in some parts. For example, the Russian dance was danced instead by clowns (humorous, but not traditional) and the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy was instead performed by flower girls.
It was extremely family-friendly. Marie never got captured by the Rat King, the fighting scenes were very less dramatic, and the "scary" parts got rewritten into the things mentioned above. I think for this particular suite, I prefer the traditional version.
If you have kids, take them to this show. It won't make them cry. But understand that the performance is more for them than for you.