A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Dubious characterization of Asians and elderly folks. Surprisingly rude and crude humor for a PG, including double entendres and other bodily function jokes.
Positive Role Models
No positive role models here.
Violence & Scariness
Animals treated poorly, the Cat gets kicked in the crotch, comic mayhem. Comic peril may freak out young children.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Double entendres will go over youngest kids' heads but not yours.
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Some naughty words and a "dirty hoe" pun. Spells out the s-word.
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Products & Purchases
More tie-ins than a barrel of monkeys.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Joke reference to drinking and smoking, adult character gets beer.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this movie isn't for the kids who are reading the book -- in its quest for a commercially-rewarding PG rating it has aged itself out of the youngest audience. It's not right for your 5- or 6-year-old. There is surprisingly rude and crude humor including double entendres and almost-swearing, potty humor, and other bodily function jokes. The Cat picks up a muddy garden implement and refers to it as "a dirty hoe" and spells out the s-word. The Cat is hit in the crotch. There's a lot of comic peril that may be too intense for younger children. An adult character drinks beer. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
The great thing about the irrepressibly anarchic Cat in the Hat is that even Hollywood can't contain him. They can stretch out the story with filler that ranges from the superfluous to the distracting and once in a while reaches the level of oh-no-not-that-again. But every time the Cat takes over, it is entertaining. Meyers' energy and audacity -- and his astonishingly animated expressions under all that fur -- keep the movie on track. This is important because very little of what is added to the story is worth the effort.
The mom-neighbor subplot isn't very original or interesting, but fortunately it does not take too much time away from the real story, which is the undeniable pleasure of watching the Cat destroy and create chaos in the perfect house. That's what keeps this movie working. We get both the fun of imagining all of that and the satisfaction of a happy ending. And Meyers is simply a hoot to watch, with able support from the kids (especially Fanning) and the fish (voice of Sean Hayes).
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.
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Our Editors Recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate