A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Confusing messages around violence. For example, Martians want to blow up Earth because humans are too violent. Also, several menions of "fat" in a hostile context, as well as a larger character who needs to squeeze into a tight seatbelt -- his size is played for humor.
Positive Role Models
The central kid character disobeys his father and tricks the adult meant to look after him. The father doesn't address the kid's desire to spend time with him and tries to buy him off with promises of gifts. Ultimately the main characters make good decisions, but not all bad decisions are addressed or met with consequences.
Violence & Scariness
Brief televised scenes of a gun shooting, explosions in a war, hockey fights, planes chasing a flying saucer. Several mild to moderate fight scenes between main characters -- a boss hits the father with a file and yells at him; the father punches and beats up coworker; the kid holds Santa hostage with a pretend gun.
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Characters call Santa "fat." One instance of "stupid" and "screwed up."
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that there are several images of violence that appear throughout this animated holiday movie. Some are distanced by appearing on a watched TV -- such as images of war, hockey fights, and a gun shooting -- and some are enacted by main characters, like when the father beats up a jealous rival who was threatening his son. Several scenes involving mild peril, like a spaceship crash and a mildly tense climax where a boy tries to stop a missle from blowing up Earth, might agitate younger kids. Also, some stereotyping of overweight people creeps into the story. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Unfortunately the build-up to the main part of the story -- the journey to Earth -- takes so long and is packed with so much backstory that kids and even adults might get lost, or just bored. Once the trip begins, things pick up and it's sort of interesting to see humans and Christmas from outsiders' eyes. The main character Kip is generally appealing, and the storyline has some originality to it. But the mixed messages around violence, consequences, and stereotypes make this a movie to pass over in favor of better choices.
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.