A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Kids might learn a bit about ranch life and rodeos, but mostly the movie intends to entertain, not educate.
The movie includes obvious messages about teamwork and self-respect, and a budding romance between teens is depicted as respectful and age appropriate. Multiple jokes are made at the expense of an overweight teen, though they're played for laughs and he even adds to them at times. Mild potty humor includes flatulence from animals.
Positive Role Models
Maya struggles to fit in with her peers and early on makes a few iffy choices and shirks responsibility, but she has a good heart and she redeems herself as the movie progresses. The cast is multicultural, and most of the main characters are African American. The two prominent adult figures are patient and understanding with teens, helping them work out issues productively.
Violence & Scariness
Dude ranch students wrestle cattle and pigs and try out bull-riding simulators, which toss them around a bit. A couple of characters are thrown from broncos, but there's no injury from the falls. One girl hurts her hand hitting a gate in frustration.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some female characters wear skimpy tops and short shorts. There's one very brief scene with a kiss, and the few instances of sexual innuendo relate to a rooster who's lost his groove with the ladies in the henhouse.
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"Oh my God" is as strong as it gets. Multiple jokes about the "fat kid."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A teen is shown holding a bottle of alcohol at a party and is blamed for spiking the punch (when in fact a mischievous monkey did it). Teens at a club drink something that looks like beer.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Dr. Dolittle 3 focuses on a teen struggling to fit in with the "cool kids" at her school, most of whom ridicule her because she can talk to animals. While tweens may not relate to her particular gifts, they could see similarities between her social struggles and theirs. The movie is filled with positive messages about appreciating your own abilities, respecting differences of character, and finding strength and support from the right friends. The lack of questionable subject matter (aside from a bunch of fat jokes) and the presence of a diverse group of characters combine to make this a great choice for tweens. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
The third installment in this movie series based loosely on the children's books by Hugh Loftling is its most family-friendly of the trio. Although this one lacks the star power of Eddie Murphy (who played Maya's father in Dr. Dolittle and Dr. Dolittle 2), Pratt gives a funny, feel-good performance as a teen struggling to balance her uniqueness with the pressures of popularity, all while tending to the issues of some very needy animals.
Tweens will likely pick up on similarities between Maya's social anxieties and their own issues with peers, and all viewers will notice the movie's strong positive messages about self-respect, friendship, and teamwork. Parents won't miss the crude humor that plagued the first two movies; in Dr. Dolittle 3, kid-friendly comedy like slimy egg fights in a henhouse and a flatulent horse ensure that the movie is fun and never boring.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.