Creature Comforts

Movie review by
Nancy Warren, Common Sense Media
Creature Comforts Movie Poster Image
Witty, absurd claymation for tweens and adults.
  • NR
  • 1996
  • 32 minutes

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages
Violence & Scariness

Moderate cartoon violence. Babies are dropped, and knights do violent battle in "Wat's Pig" devil aims a gun at a little girl in "Not Without My Handbag" impatient creator threatens clay creation with his fist in "Adam."). The devil kills a little girl's aunt and the aunt returns as a zombie from hell in "Not Without My Handbag."

Sexy Stuff

Moderate profanity in "Not Without My Handbag."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this video features much claymation violence and frightening situations, such as an aunt risen from the dead as a zombie. There's also some profanity. But the video will prove worthwhile to more mature kids and adults, for its multilayered humor and visual mastery.

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What's the story?

The titular tale in this claymation collection is Nick Park's classic Creature Comforts, a pseudo-documentary about zoo animals. Various interviewed (animated) animals wryly comment on what it's like surviving the confinement and monotony of zoo life. The other stories in the collection include Wat's Pig, which tells the medieval morality tale of separated twins; Not Without My Handbag, an absurdist comedy about the consequences of failing to read the fine print, and Adam, which chronicles the difficult existence of the first clay creature, whose creator isn't very nice.

Is it any good?

In addition to the title short by Nick Park (of Wallace and Gromit fame), claymation kings Peter Lord and Boris Kossmehl deliver comical and implausible plots and scintillating visuals. This collection is perfect for both teenagers and their parents who can appreciate the eccentric sensibility and multiple levels of humor.

Younger children will laugh at the animals' accents strange behavior in Creature Comforts, older kids and parents will howl at the dialogue of this 1989 Oscar winner as animals speak out about their treatment. Wat's Pig, a 1996 Oscar nominee, is a fast-paced medieval action fable, and Adam (a '91 nominee), will entrance younger viewers with its clever clay-play. Not Without My Handbag is a standout, combining Night of the Living Dead horror-animation, suspenseful music, and a ridiculous plot in which the devil owns a washing machine company.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the different types of animation and claymation each family members enjoy. How do the shorts use animation and claymation for social commentary? How is that like other favorite series, such as The Simpsons?

Movie details

  • In theaters: April 10, 1996
  • On DVD or streaming: June 6, 2000
  • Director: Nick Park
  • Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
  • Genre: Family and Kids
  • Run time: 32 minutes
  • MPAA rating: NR
  • MPAA explanation: not rated
  • Last updated: September 19, 2019

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