Parents' Guide to

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

By Common Sense Media, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 6+

A fantastical car story custom-made for kids.

Movie G 1968 144 minutes
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 6+

Based on 23 parent reviews

age 8+

Not a Dynamic Film

Seeing that Dick Van Dyke is one of the main characters, I was expecting a dynamic film similar to Mary Poppins. I was a little disappointed that the music fell flat and the story had some strange scenes that didn't really add to the main plotline. The main review page mentions a kiss between the two main characters as the only "sexy stuff" in the movie. But there is a scene in Act Two between the Baron and Baroness where she is only wearing a corset and pantyhose and the Baron is trying to kill her by various means throughout the song. My 3yo child became scared several times throughout the film during suspenseful moments.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
2 people found this helpful.
age 6+

Vintage Family Gem

If you're expecting a "Mary Poppins" experience, this isn't it. It's not as polished or catchy. Described as "if Mary Poppins and 007 had a love child it would be Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" and at times during the movie you get a sense of that. As a child, I watched this several times as a child and wanted my kids to enjoy the whimsical, fantastical automobile adventure. The opening scene was enthralling for my kids to see the crazy and death-defying shenanigans of yesteryear automobile racing. Dick Van Dyke does his predictable yet loveable jigs and playful dances beside his beautiful lady counterpart (Sally Ann Howes). The children (Adrian Hall and Heather Ripley) are adorable, with old-world charm and innocence. Two scene caveats though, #1- There is a scene where the Baroness is dressed in a corset and the Baron is trying to kill her using booby traps. It was one of those "hang-on... is this a family movie?" moments (perhaps it's one of those times when the minds of Ian Fleming (writer) and Roald Dahl (screenwriter) didn't quite mesh so well). #2- the long-nosed Childcatcher (Robert Helpmann) was a little too scary for my 5 yo girl (who doesn't like suspense). However, that is the intention of the character and young kids are not meant to like him. Overall, it is a "family movie" for the whole family. If you haven't seen this vintage gem yet, book it for your next family movie night. It's good for children to see talented, real (i.e. not CGI) actors/actresses who can sing, dance and act. I'm happy this classic had the same effect on me decades ago as it did on my kids today. They were talking about the movie and even singing some of the catchier songs one week ( Chitty Chitty Bang Band theme song, "Me Ol' Bamboo", "Music Box Dance", "Toot Sweets", "Truly Scrumptious"). At almost 2hours and 30mins, press "play" earlier rather than later in the evening.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (23):
Kids say (23):

This film is the stuff of magic. Roald Dahl, author of many children's stories including James and the Giant Peach and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, was co-writer of the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang screenplay, which blends fantasy and adventure in a whimsical movie musical that has been captivating children for decades. The wonderful music comes as no surprise; after all, it's by brothers Richard and Robert Sherman, who also wrote the music for Mary Poppins. Though the songs in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang aren't quite as memorable, the story may leave even more of an impression on kids and excite them to a greater degree thanks to the thrilling action and abundant humor. Young viewers may drift to sleep after the climax, as the love story between Caractacus and Truly concludes, but they'll have a feast of visions to dream of for years to come.

Movie Details

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