By Grace Montgomery,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Religious cartoon is strong on role models, weak on plot.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Teaches some basic biblical lessons.
Full of positive messages: popularity isn't everything, help those in need, and soon. Encourages viewers to try new things, even if they're scared.
Positive Role Models
Iesodo (who represents Jesus) spreads a message of hope and inclusion to all the birds and helps those who need it -- for example, giving sight to a blind bird and helping a nervous bird find courage.
Violence & Scariness
Maggie says she's lost her entire family, though she doesn't give details.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Iesodo: Believe is the first in a series of animated biblical tales that star Iesodo, a white dove that represents Jesus. The film doesn't directly relate any specific biblical stories but explores the idea of believing in the Christian faith. This clean tale has strong positive messages about helping others and being kind. But some kids may be bored by the lack of plot, and nonreligious families may not be interested in the Christian themes.
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Videos and Photos
Based on 2 parent reviews
Beautiful way to relate the Bible to children
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Iesodo is a wonderful show
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What's the Story?
In "The Gathering," a beautiful white dove named Iesodo (which means "the way of Jesus") has started gathering together all the birds in the Holy Land so they can hear his message of hope. Rocky, a Bulbul bird, relates how each of the birds in the land heard about Iesodo and how Iesodo helped them in some way. Meanwhile, the Hoopoe birds worry that Iesodo is trying to change their traditions and to convince the birds they shouldn't follow him. In "Believing Is Seeing," Iesodo helps Luke, a blind finch, fulfill his dream to fly and helps him regain his sight, much to the amazement of the other birds.
Is It Any Good?
IESODO: BELIEVE is a very clean, simple film that most likely will appeal to parents who are looking for a wholesome way to teach their children about the Christian faith. Unfortunately, it probably won't appeal to many others. The film is pretty saccharine and heavy-handed, and the characters all are one-dimensional. There's also not much of a plot, especially in "The Gathering," beyond simply introducing Iesodo and saying how amazing he is.
Very young children may simply enjoy the different bird characters, but older preschoolers may get bored. Parents looking for an enjoyable biblical tale for young children would be better off looking to the VeggieTales TV show and movies, which present Christian-themed stories in a much more engaging format.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the Hoopoes. Why do you think the Hoopoes didn't like Iesodo? Why were they threatened by his message?
Do you think non-Christian viewers will still enjoy the film? What messages does it share that can apply to everyone?
The film shows a lot of types of birds. Which one is your favorite? Why is it your favorite?
- On DVD or streaming: October 15, 2013
- Cast: Tony Oliver, Erin Bethea, T.W. Gibis
- Director: Brian E. Ray
- Studio: Zaya Toonz
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Run time: 50 minutes
- MPAA rating: NR
- Last updated: July 30, 2022
Did we miss something on diversity?
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