Kung-Fu Magoo

Movie review by
S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media
Kung-Fu Magoo Movie Poster Image
Stereotypes, violence abound in classic cartoon remake.
  • NR
  • 2010
  • 75 minutes

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Some mixed messages. Good triumphs over evil, and so does genial cluelessness. Whether this is a positive is up for debate. At the Evilympics, sometimes cheating pays, as does hair-pulling and punching.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Both positive and negative role models. Some stereotypes immediately come to play: A muscled bully makes fun of glasses-wearing Justin, who appears to be very smart; his best friend is an equally smart Indian boy. A man is bent on spreading evil, but his sweet teenage daughter defies his need to create chaos by befriending the good guys.

Violence & Scariness

Cartoonish violence (a robot firing at humans; a truck careens off a cliff; knives nearly strike a man; torture as form of athleticism in the Evilympics).

Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this animated adventure resuscitates an old-school character named Mr. Magoo, a near-blind grandpa-like figure whose inability to see is fodder for hijinks and jokes. Tweens and younger may find it interesting that Dylan and Cole Sprouse, of Disney’s TV show, The Suite Life, voiced some of the characters. There are moments of old-fashioned fun (Magoo limboing through a robotic spider’s legs), but some characters are stereotypical (Magoo himself as an addled elderly person). Cartoonish violence abounds.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 7 and 10-year-old Written byEric Z. May 23, 2013

Maintains spirit of classic Magoo character in a contemporary, fast-paced, enjoyable film

Despite the film’s title, we don’t get a lot of kung fu fighting from Mr. Magoo. (He gets his moniker because someone thinks he’s striking a Karate Kid-like cra... Continue reading
Adult Written bynduns December 28, 2011

Honestly, I expected worse...

I can't really say I'm particularly a fan of Mr. Magoo, but this film I thought was okay. It had a few good elements to it and while the animations a... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written bythecoolguy1048 December 4, 2018

What's the story?

Quincy Magoo (voiced by Jim Conroy) starts off his teenage nephew Justin’s (Dylan Sprouse) first day at school by giving him an apple, and from there it’s downhill. The bus bully’s already on his game, and everyone else is laughing at Justin. Meanwhile, evil robots, bone-crushers, and criminal mastermind Tan Gu (Lloyd Floyd) are threatening to cause evil ear infections throughout the city. The Anti-Evil Task Force, mistaking Mr. Magoo as a crime-fighter, put him to work to take down Tan Gu in his Evilympics, where opponents are put through a series of increasingly dangerous challenges.

Is it any good?

The plot, as it were, is nearly nonsensical, but that has always been Mr. Magoo’s charm. Though he wreaks havoc with his obliviousness -- he often walks into a dangerous situation simply because he literally walks into one -- he successfully extricates himself and saves the world in the process. On the face of it, it’s a nostalgic trip to cartoon history -- Magoo first debuted in the late '40s, and the special effects are certainly pre-CGI -- and it's a welcome relief from the relentlessness and inanity of current fare. But if one must be a stickler, it's also kind of mean, what with all the jokes at an elderly person's expense. Many of the characters are caricatures, too: the smart boy who's constantly bullied wears, yes, a pair of glasses; his equally smart best friend is from India.The villain, also, is a stereotype, a Chinese man who wears robes and has a long beard, with gongs in the background of his home. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Mr. Magoo’s character and how he compares to those created more recently. How is he different? Is he still funny (i.e. stands the test of time)?

  • Does this modern-day update make sense? Is there anything about it that’s off-putting, like stereotypical characters?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

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