Parents' Guide to

Bernie the Dolphin

By Tara McNamara, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 6+

Amiable eco-tale is wholesome but lackluster.

Movie G 2018 92 minutes
Bernie the Dolphin Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 7+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 5+

Great family movie!!

I dont know why this has such bad reviews! Movie was clean, fun, has smart kids as lead characters. Exactly what your looking for when scrolling through endless movies looking for something fun and family friendly. Perfect choice.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
age 6+

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5):
Kids say (3):

In so many ways, this movie is a parent's dream; its just too bad the script and filmmaking aren't more engaging. Bernie the Dolphin features aspirational, smart kids in a loving family that operates with a teamwork philosophy. The children use their unique passions and talents to uncover a suspicious real estate scheme, and their judgment only goes awry when they interpret parental guideposts the wrong way. The dialogue is simple and straightforward, which can be helpful in a film made for children. Other than one word so minor it seems that perhaps the filmmakers didn't realize it could be considered a no-no ("crap"), there's really no iffy content -- and young viewers will probably learn a couple of things and may even take a deeper interest in protecting oceans and marine life.

But unfortunately the story isn't particularly creative, and the movie lacks the pizzazz of modern-day filmmaking. In fact, the scenes most likely to capture children's attention are when Kevin and Holly break the law. Although the title suggests that the movie is about the dolphin, it's really about the family; too much time is spent on the Ryan parents dealing with their issues rather than showing viewers cool dolphin tricks or the kids interacting with Bernie (who's a real charmer; he'll steal hearts). Despite every good intention this movie has, there's a good chance parents will hear those two dreaded words: "I'm bored."

Movie Details

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