A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Brum is really more of a good citizen than he is a crime fighter. While he does take on pickpockets and thieves here, nearly half of the episodes have no real "bad guy." In one, he returns a cell phone taken by a naughty dog, for example (and returns the dog, as well).
What's the story?
BRUM: SOCCER HERO AND OTHER STORIES feature seven live-action episodes about Brum (named for the sound cars make), a cute little car who gives the good people of Big Town a hand. Brum scores the winning goal against a cheating soccer team, stops a runaway rickshaw -- and even captures a pair of pickpockets. Created by Ragdoll Ltd., who created Teletubbies, Brum doesn't talk -- children narrate some to clarify the storyline and encourage Brum -- but he does emote with his cute headlight eyes, and he speeds up to chase criminals, gives a ride to a mischievous dog, and honks to alert a police officer of a van of stolen loot.
Is it any good?
Your kids may not connect with this heroic car instantly (the way they do with a little red furry monster, for example), and there is a decisively British flavor to these. (In one episode, Brum helps Mr. Brillo recover his prize garden gnome.) But the theme song played at the end of each installment is quite catchy, and the exaggerated acting and constant gags are sure to elicit some giggles (a fan blows off a man's wig in one episode, revealing his bald head, while in another a teen thug gets his head stuck in a bucket).
Each segment is short (about 10 minutes, over two of which is intro and outro). Adults won't likely find anything objectionable here, except perhaps for one homeless man who's sort of played for laughs. You'll probably consider this pretty hokey fare. But if you're looking to give your kids -- and yourself -- a break from Elmo and Barney, give this title a test drive.
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