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Parents' Guide to

Curious George (2006)

By Cynthia Fuchs, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 4+

A simple, sweet, sometimes silly monkey tale.

Movie G 2006 77 minutes
Curious George (2006) Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 3+

Based on 32 parent reviews

age 5+

Disappointing, at best

Without any real examination the movie is “fine.” But for parents concerned about the messaging in kids movies, this one has problems. The reason the Man in the Yellow Hat goes to Africa is ultimately to steal a religious/cultural idol. In typical western fashion, he hires locals to do the hard work, with complete disregard for what it means to take a piece of another culture’s life and history. There is no discussion with or compensation offered to the people to whom the idol belongs, in fact the guides are made to seem like they are just fine with this American looting of the giant statue. Many modern day museums are being asked to return items like these that were stolen hundreds of years ago, yet this movie makes it seem like it’s no problem to do it today. If you’re going to watch this with your child, plan to discuss this highly problematic aspect of the story.

This title has:

Too much violence
2 people found this helpful.
age 4+

Not true to the spirit of the books, CG is abandoned by TMITYH, and adult situations

My young daughter liked the movie 'just OK'... and I feel the same way. This doesn't "feel" like Curious George, and there are some troublesome issues with it. This movie is NOT related to the PBS show in any way either. The man with the yellow hat doesn't willingly take George from Africa like in the first book; George follows him secretly. In the books, the man loves George unconditionally; he never wants to get rid of George no matter what scrapes he gets into, and he always helps George get out of them. In this movie, the man keeps trying to get rid of George, which is understandable since he didn't want George in the first place and George is ruining his life. Finally the man succeeds: George is caged and taken away (crying and protesting) and put on a boat bound for Africa. If you're sensitive about what impression media may have on your kids, a running theme in this movie is "if you're a nuisance people will want to get rid of you." Abandonment is, of course, one of kids' biggest fears. My daughter of course did not like it when the man gave George away. She wasn't upset with the book's original plot of the man taking George FROM Africa, which some people are upset by or have said their kids are. In the books the man is responsible, level-headed and calm. In this movie the man is a total goofus (just like Disney's Goofy but more self-centered), and has a lot of adult problems that he is trying to solve. The problems George causes are on a larger scale than in the original books. The man gets kicked out of his 'no pets' apartment and has to sleep in Central Park. George causes a massive string of traffic accidents which in real life would probably cause serious injuries. And the man's main problem, which George exacerbates for most of the movie, is that the museum where he works is in danger of being shut down for lack of public interest, and the smarmy son of the museum's owner is trying to spur that on so he can build a parking lot on the land. The salvation of the museum is centered on an ancient African monkey idol (the museum's display of it includes tribal Africans kneeling in worship of the idol, just FYI if you care about such things). Why such an adult plot in a kids' movie? The man belatedly realizes that all the havoc George has caused in his life has actually enriched his life, and he goes through many Goofy-esque acrobatic stunts to rescue George from the boat just as it is leaving. The man gets George back, saves the museum and gets the girl (yes, there is a love interest). This movie really is more about the man than about George. If you love the books like I do, I highly recommend the DVD "Curious George (Collector's Edition)." My daughter and I both liked it a LOT more than this movie. It is actually an animated version of two of the books, and it was overseen by Margret Rey. It also has several other animated shorts of classic books including Frog and Toad. The PBS animated series is a lot better than this movie too.

This title has:

Too much violence
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (32 ):
Kids say (40 ):

Congenial and colorful, this movie takes its cues from children's animated TV, delivering simple concepts, bright reds and yellows, and a cute-as-can-be monkey. Younger kids will like George, and may recognize the plots of several of the classic books woven into the story.

Adults will probably find Curious George slow going, and kids used to action-packed movies may also get bored. The bottom line: Great monkey -- and some silly monkey business -- but pretty short on plot, and what's there is predictable.

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