A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The movie intends to entertain rather than to educate.
Kids see a community pull together to help one of their own when Arnold tries to win a contest. By so doing, they acknowledge the many ways he's helped them over time. Friends show loyalty and courage even in the face of danger, and Arnold's determination to find his parents is admirable. Some potty humor in a reference to going number two, and one incident of boys mooning a camera.
Positive Role Models
Arnold perseveres through many challenges to find his parents. Adult characters are mostly dim or evil, which opens the door for the courageous kids to be the heroes.
Violence & Scariness
Arnold and his friends face many occasions of peril, including facing river pirates, nearly falling off a cliff, and enduring several booby traps in the jungle. Many characters carry and use machetes, and a villain uses another man as a shield against arrows, presumably causing his death. Others are crushed by falling rocks.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Helga's crush on Arnold results in a kiss.
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Helga calls her friends names like "fool," "jerk face," "stupid," and the like.
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Products & Purchases
The movie follows the TV series Hey Arnold!, which newcomers to the story may want to watch after enjoying this show.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Hey Arnold!: The Jungle Movie is the continuation of the story of Arnold Shortman from the '90s Hey Arnold! series. It picks up after the events unfolded in the series and in the episodic special The Journal, in which Arnold came by his father's journal that held clues to his parents' whereabouts. In this portion of the story, Arnold and his friends set off for San Lorenzo to try to locate them, facing numerous foes and dangers along the way. Expect some tense moments (kids hanging over a cliff, being shot at by arrows, etc.) and a few minor characters' deaths, but more prominent and impacting themes of friendship, courage, and perseverance. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
For fans left hanging after Hey Arnold!: The Journal hinted at an eventual reunion between Arnold and his parents, this movie was a long time coming. Arnold's jungle adventures and quest to find his mom and dad settle into the show's timeline as though no time has passed, let alone the 10-plus elapsed years since new episodes aired. Every bit of what viewers have come to appreciate about the characters and superb writing in this series is on display here, including more of Arnold's kind and humble nature that hides his courage and perseverance. But he doesn't act alone, and ultimately it's an unlikely hero who emerges to save the day with a selfless act.
Its animated style might appeal to young kids, but Hey Arnold!: The Jungle Movie is a more mature watch than its appearance initially suggests. Arnold wrestles with the loss of his parents and puts himself and his friends in danger attempting to find them. Even though there's much humor to the story, there are also numerous scenes that show the young characters in real danger at the hands of a scheming grown-up with his own selfish agenda, who's eventually responsible for some minor characters' deaths. But there are also positive examples of friendship, especially with regard to Arnold and Helga, and a satisfying ending that celebrates family bonds.
Did we miss something on diversity?
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