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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Lots of information about dolphins: habitat, pods, sounds, capabilities.
Messages about protecting the environment, humankind's responsibility for the planet's creatures, believing in oneself. Family is shown dealing with grief. Promotes good communication and active participation: "Do you want to sit around with your toes in the water or dive in?"
Positive Role Models
Solid parent-child and sibling relationships. Dad is concerned, wise, loving. Kids value family and display compassion, respect for nature. Ethnic diversity throughout. Females are active participants, leaders of the scientific team that helps the family.
Violence & Scariness
Dolphin and kids are threatened by villains who later learn an important lesson. Dolphin is hunted with spears, menaced as he circles a boat. A fight between grown men. A boy and a man fall into the ocean and must be rescued.
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Products & Purchases
Identifiable equipment: Scarab, Yamaha, Fusion, and UNEXSO diving company.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Dolphin Kick is a live-action adventure about siblings Skyler (Tyler Jade Nixon) and Luke (Axle McCoy), who befriend a solo dolphin named Echo and try to reunite him with a pod. There are suspenseful moments in which both Echo and the kids are threatened by angry fishermen; the climax involves a physical fight between two men and a scene in which the villains attempt to kill Echo with a spear. The film is best suited for kids who are comfortable with real vs. pretend scares, as the scenes of Echo in danger may be disturbing for some. But the movie is filled with positive messages about family harmony and dealing with grief, as well as humans' responsibility to nature's creatures. You can also expect lots of relevant information about dolphins and their way of life. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Wonderful shots of a dolphin frolicking in tropical seas and making heartwarming connections with kids, as well as some nice family moments, are the reasons to see this sincere but unpolished film. Everyone involved gives it their best, and it appears to be a family affair with lots of overlap among the performers and production folks. The filmmaking team pays attention to family-friendly details -- reminding us to avoid littering, wear sunscreen, ensure boat safety. Plus, there's a genuine effort to impart solid information about the habitat and behavior of the planet's most intelligent sea mammal. So, though it may not be the most artful of movies -- with uneven performances and a script in which the "conflict" feels forced and often arbitrary -- Dolphin Kick should please folks who like a feel-good movie and love watching beautiful creatures fill the screen with their antics.
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.