A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The movie is intended to entertain rather than educate.
Friendship, teamwork, and perseverance are all on display.
Positive Role Models
Brightheart is a firefly superhero. She heads up the Firefly Action Brigade group of rescuers. She shows leadership, delivering orders confidently. She puts herself in danger to help others and encourages teamwork, even between her rivals. The robot Aurora overcomes her programming and sacrifices herself in the name of friendship by self-destructing -- she is later rebuilt. The moth chief is opinionated and cowardly but eventually learns the importance of teamwork and helps Brightheart.
There is a message of inclusivity as different species of insects with different beliefs learn to appreciate each other and work together. Positive and well-rounded gender representation. Moths are led by a leader who wears tribal paint and has mystical beliefs. A bold character is described as "nuts" and "crazy." Some diversity among the voice cast.
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Violence & Scariness
Many battles with laser guns and spears used as weapons. A spear cuts the cheek of one character. To defeat enemies, a character self-destructs but is later rebuilt. Moths are shown being killed in a bug zapper and on a candle flame. Threat includes characters chased by an owl and a mole. A tribe chief pins a young larva to the ground and says they need "a good spanking." Creatures are gassed while in captivity.
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Infrequent language includes "poop," "butt," and "dork." A character is described as "nuts" and "crazy."
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Products & Purchases
A character's "bling bling" is mentioned multiple times during a song.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Brightheart 2: Firefly Action Brigade is the all-action sequel to animated bug movie Brightheart: Let Your Light Shine. It features regular battles and threat, but also themes of friendship, teamwork, and perseverance. Bugs -- led by the superhero firefly Brightheart (this time voiced by Savannah Ruth Newton) -- take on an army of robots and a tribe of moths. Battles are fought with laser blasts and spears, one of which cuts a character's face. Aurora, the robot from the first movie, self-destructs in order to save others. But she is later rebuilt. As with the first film, there is some killing amongst the insects. A bug zapper is used to kill some moths, while others fly into a candle flame. The chief moth pins a larva to the ground and says he needs "a good spanking." Words such as "butt," "poop," and "dork" are used on occasion. A character is described as "nuts" and "crazy." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
While the original movie was about Brightheart's feelings of jealousy when the robot Aurora arrived, this sequel is strictly an all-action affair. Brightheart 2: Firefly Action Brigade features the same diverse cast of bugs from the first movie and then sets them straight to battle for almost 90 minutes. Unfortunately with its lack of atmosphere and low stakes, it often feels like sitting through a video game without the fun of actually playing it. It's attractively animated with a clear appeal for younger viewers, which like the first movie creates a jarring tone with the violence and deaths.
Those coming to the movie without having seen the first will be brought up to speed with an awkward rap at the start of the movie. But despite the efforts to get the audience on side, the film never draws you in. So when key events take place, no real emotion is felt. With its relentless battles and lack of compelling characters, Brightheart 2: Firefly Action Brigade does little more than look fine and pass the time.
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.