Little Giants



The little guy wins in this kiddie comedy.
  • Review Date: March 2, 2005
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 1999
  • Running Time: 106 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The movie's message, even if recited by rote, is a good one: teamwork and inclusion are important.

Violence & scariness

Typical football action. Lots of grunting and vowing to tear opponents to bits.

Sexy stuff

Mild. Some awkward teen kissing.


Includes "crap," "hell" and one "for Christ's sake".

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this Mighty Ducks knock-off is rote, but carries a good message, and kids will enjoy it. Five-year-olds may be old enough to enjoy many of the movie's goofy antics, but 6- to 8-year-olds are this movie's target audience. Older kids will likely lose interest.

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Kids say

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What's the story?

Two adult brothers living in a small town -- returning football star Kevin (Ed O'Neill) and diminutive nerd Danny (Rick Moranis) -- coach opposing pee-wee football teams. Danny's team may be filled with outcasts, but they still give Kevin's team a run for their money and teach the brothers a thing or two about family and sportsmanship.

Is it any good?


This is a formulaic yet good-natured football yarn for those who haven't seen the story of nerds triumphing over jocks many times before. The predictable big-game showdown, the bumbling practice antics, the coach falling for one of the team moms -- these are just some of the elements lifted directly from The Mighty Ducks franchise. Inconceivably, this project required the efforts of four writers. What could they have been doing? Watching and stealing from every movie in the genre? Of course, the reason we see this formula over and again is it seems to work -- audiences eat it up.

To be fair, there are some humorous bits in the movie. The no-neck Neanderthal Spike, who only refers to himself in the third person, is fun to watch, saying things like, "Spike is going to tear you apart!" The go-cart scene one-ups the rollerblading chase from D2. And Ed O'Neill's Kevin is just nasty enough to make you really dislike him. The movie's message, even if recited by rote, is a good one: Teamwork and inclusion are important.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why the Giants won. What character traits did the players develop as a result of working together?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:March 2, 1999
DVD release date:March 2, 1999
Cast:Devon Sawa, Ed O'Neill, Rick Moranis
Director:Duwayne Dunham
Studio:Warner Bros.
Topics:Sports and martial arts, Misfits and underdogs
Run time:106 minutes
MPAA rating:PG
MPAA explanation:thematic elements

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 13 years old Written April 9, 2008
Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2008


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