Bobbleheads: The Movie

Movie review by
Jennifer Green, Common Sense Media
Bobbleheads: The Movie Movie Poster Image
Cartoon violence, stereotypes in film based on popular dolls
  • PG
  • 2020
  • 83 minutes

Parents say

age 4+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 5 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

The concept of collectible dolls worth high values could be of interest to kids, as could the idea of a professional career as a roller coaster designer. The film has positive messages of courage, kindness, and teamwork.

Positive Messages

Kindness, friendship, courage, and love are all more valuable than skills or appearances. Being real is important. Toys are meant to bring joy.

Positive Role Models

Each of the dolls has its own disappointments about not living up to their prototypes, but they all learn to accept themselves and value each other as they are. The dolls demonstrate teamwork, putting their own lives at risk for each other. Earl is plagued by a guilty conscience for scheming to steal from his own brother, and decides to do the right thing. Binky isn’t guilty about lying and stealing, and instead seems driven by class resentment. Lots of stereotypes.

Violence & Scariness

Cartoon violence ranges from a toddler nearly falling down stairs and off a table to a woman being tripped and stumbling down the same stairs. The woman hits her boyfriend over the head, ties him up, and locks him in a car trunk. Dolls fight and get chased by people and a dog, pushed, hit, discombobulated, and catapulted, but always emerge unscathed.

Sexy Stuff

Two dolls flirt then have trouble making their bobbleheads fit together for a kiss, but manage by the end. They share a romantic song routine and a cuddle. A woman mistakes a toy for her sponge in the bath, and the toy later complains he's seen things no toy should ever have to see.

Language

"Blows," "turd," "butt," "Lord," "crap," "stupid," "moron," "swear," "cray-cray," "low-class," "loser," "faker," "dumb," "sleazeball." Gross-out humor.

Consumerism

The film promotes Bobblehead merchandise. A theme of the film is a "low-class" couple looking to get rich quick.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A woman drinks a martini in the bathtub.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Bobbleheads will appeal to kids familiar with the dolls. It has positive messages about teamwork and friendship, as well as a cameo by a Cher (in doll form), but it also relies on stereotypes. An overweight, white couple with Southern accents are characterized as not-particularly-bright, camo-wearing, Jell-O-toting petty thieves. It's never explained why Jim's brother has a thick country accent. A skater girl doll acts tough and uses slangy language, a British cat is snooty, and a doll with a Japanese-sounding name appears to do meditation or yoga moves and has computer and video game skills. The film also goes for some easy laughs with gross-out humor, like a man mistaking a dog's fart for his girlfriend's breath. There's plenty of cartoon violence, some of it gratuitous, like when the dolls purposefully trip a woman down a flight of stairs, a man is hog-tied and shoved into a car trunk, and a doll gets catapulted onto a ceiling fan, where she hangs by her neck temporarily. Nobody is actually injured. Language ranges from insults like "low-class," "loser," "sleazeball," and "moron" to words like "crap," "butt," "turd," "blows," "dumb," and "stupid." A male and a female bobblehead flirt and kiss. A woman mistakes a toy for her sponge in the bath, and the toy later complains he's seen things no toy should ever have to see.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bysomeone12345678 November 3, 2021

terrible toy story rip off!

This is garbage, don't watch if you want to stay sane! Can't stand the fact that their heads move every time they move adding frames to make it longer... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byDisney- October 10, 2021

WHY DID FUNKO MAKE THIS

This movie is way to scary to be PG, at one point a barbie kills bill cipher with coffee. There are references to smoking pot roast and a wreck it Ralph funko p... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old July 31, 2021

NOT FOR KIDS!!!!!!!!!!

I can’t believe it! This is utterly vulgar! I put this on for my kids and turned it off after 2 minutes. DO NOT SHOW YOUR KIDS THIS OFFENSIVE MOVIE!!!!!

What's the story?

Jim (Anthony de Stefanis) and his wife need a break from their frustrating work as theme park designers and decide to take their two daughters on a weekend trip in BOBBLEHEADS. While they're away, Jim's no-good brother, Earl (Luke Wilson), and Earl's mischievous girlfriend Binky (Jennifer Coolidge), sneak into the house to find a collectible doll worth millions. But the trio of bobbleheads who live in the house, including Ikioi (Karen Fukuhara), Purrbles McCat (Julian Sands), and Kelani (Brenda Song), pair with baseball player Bobble Deuce (Khary Payton) that Earl's brought as a trade to thwart their plans.

Is it any good?

Bobbleheads has lots of action, little story, and heavy stereotyping. This makes the film easy to understand but possibly disappointing for fans of subtler animated stories with more developed characters, such as the Toy Story series. The messages of teamwork and the value of friendship are positive enough, and the animation is glossy and appealing (though some viewers may find the bobbling of the bobbleheads distracting).

Following a tradition of adopting popular toys to film, Bobbleheads will appeal to fans and could spark more sales of the dolls. But the film missteps with un-funny, heavily-handed characterizations of Earl and Binky and a bit too much gratuitous violence that doesn't feel right for the target audience. Cher makes her grand entrance at the end and stars in some silly end credits, but even that's a bit of a let-down after the build-up of her participation in the marketing.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the Bobblehead creed. The dolls offer their own versions, but Cher corrects them at the end. What is the creed and what do you interpret it to mean?

  • Are you familiar with Cher? Where could you go to find more information about her?

  • How do the bobblehead characters compare with the actual dolls? Is this how you might have imagined them come to life?

  • Earl seems to feel guilty even before Binky turns on him. Do you think his brother was right to forgive him and welcome him into his home?

  • The movie has lots of stereotypes. Which ones did you identify? Why can stereotypes be harmful?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love animated tales

Themes & Topics

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