A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
This title intends to entertain rather than educate.
Generally the characters' actions don't have the negative results they would in the real world. While in the mall at night, for example, they help themselves to food and other products from stores without paying for them, and they break a window to escape. Expect gross-out humor when a character sneezes into the mixture he's stirring and continues to bake with it (yuck!). One character suffers from a drug-like addiction to cinnamon buns and, despite his preventative patch on his arm, succumbs to temptation often in the mall's bakery. On a happy note, the show takes clever jabs at the commercialism of the holiday and applauds celebrating its spirit instead.
Positive Role Models
Hoops and Yoyo know no behavioral limits, and the premise of this story caters to their carefree lifestyles by making their excessive freedom seem very appealing. They make their own rules, and they never have to cope with the consequences of their actions. Piddles is a better model of propriety, but her appeals to the others mostly go unheeded.
Violence & Scariness
Mayhem rules as the characters have the run of the mall. In one scene, a set of knives and cleavers is sent flying and narrowly misses them, and they're chased by shadowed, unidentified pursuers throughout most of the story. No injuries, though, and nothing scarier than a surprise here and there.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Female mannequins wear bras and underwear in a store display.
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Multiple instances of "butt."
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Products & Purchases
Hoops and Yoyo are the faces of Hallmark, with their image gracing plush toys, books, and other products in the gift stores.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the titular characters of hoops&yoyo's Haunted Halloween are the modern faces of Hallmark products including greeting cards, e-cards, apps, and stationery items. They're hyperactive and fun-loving, but their escapades often end in general chaos and some property damage, all of which is played for fun in the story. The special sets out to make a statement against the commercialism of the holidays -- and Halloween in particular -- and celebrates the spirit instead (an irony that kids might be prompted to recognize). Expect some brief moments of surprise (spooky figures giving chase), dialogue with multiple instances of "butt," and a scene showing nearly naked mannequins in a store window, but overall, the content is OK for most families. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This is a carefree holiday special that captures the essence of these joyful, hyperactive characters who have a knack for turning lemons into lemonade pie with a cherry on top. Stuck in a locked mall on Halloween night when all your friends are at a costume party? That's hardly enough to keep these guys down, and multi-generational audiences will find plenty of laughable moments as hoops&yoyo treat themselves to a behind-the-scenes tour of an after-hours mall full of stores that spoof some of Hallmark's real-world neighbors.
If you're looking for some substance with your giggles, you'll have to search beyond the antics of these famous pink kitty and green bunny, whose sense of adventure leads them into some scenarios that in your kids' world would bring some hefty consequences for stealing and damaging property. Of course, in the context of this comical story, it's all fun and games, and older kids will likely take it as such. Even better, they might grasp some of the story's intended message against holiday commercialism that's cleverly entwined with the identity of the mystery characters -- although there's a touch of irony in the fact that it's delivered by two poster kids for imbedded marketing.
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.