Meet Dave

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Meet Dave Movie Poster Image
Not as crass as Norbit, but as forgettable.
  • PG
  • 2008
  • 95 minutes

Parents say

age 8+
Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 30 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

On the one hand, aliens realize that Earthlings aren't all evil and worth destroying, and a timid boy acts courageously. But on the other hand, there are several off-putting sterotypes: After hearing a showtune, one alien exhibits flamboyant homosexual stereotypes; a female alien starts trashtalking about other women's weight; a black alien starts listening to rap, commenting on women's behinds, etc.

Positive Role Models & Representations

No role models.

Violence

"Dave" gets struck by a car, and his "ankle" looks broken. There's an armed takeover of the Dave spaceship and a shootout between Dave and the NYPD. An alien tries to destroy earth, but it's more comical than scary.

Sex

Mild flirting, hugging, and one kiss. An alien remarks on a woman's behind.

Language

Mild: "damn it," "ass," etc.

Consumerism

One scene is practically an Old Navy commercial; another takes place in an Apple store. There are several references to Internet companies like Google, Yahoo!, MySpace, etc. Other product placements include Heinz ketchup and the Broadway musical A Chorus Line.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Adults have mojitos at a restaurant; aliens consume the alcohol that "Dave" drinks.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that although this Eddie Murphy comedy is mostly inoffensive, the alien characters display some off-putting stereotypes about gay men, women, and African Americans. The jokes aren't crass -- they're just cliched and stupid (for example, liking showtunes means you're flamboyantly homosexual, being black means you love rap, etc.). Otherwise, there's some scatological humor, a couple scenes of mild violence, some mild drinking and language, and a whole lot of product placements.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 4, 7, and 9-year-old Written byRettendonCommon September 28, 2013

A film with some good humanity and laughs

This is a good film which entertains kids with all the 'body as a spaceship' theme and adults with the love interest between Eddy Murphy and Elizabeth... Continue reading
Parent of a 7 and 10-year-old Written byMattmchugh February 14, 2011

Neat premise, but inappropriate content for younger kids

The idea of a human-sized robot with tiny people running it from within is one almost every kid has imagined, so this movie touches a spot in the modern collect... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byMovieCritic102 July 20, 2018

Interesting Premise but Ultimately Forgettable

'Meet Dave' is a slapstick comedy that is aimed for kids. The story revolves around an alien robot, which is being controlled by hundreds of tiny huma... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byKmanduck May 4, 2018

This was my childhood

I came home everyday with my best friend and I would watch this with my best friend. I am now 13 and still remember this amazing movie.

What's the story?

Eddie Murphy is the captain of a crew of miniature aliens that arrive on Earth in a ship formed exactly like a human-sized Eddie Murphy. On a mission to find a lost orb that can drain the oceans of salt, the human-like ship is accidentally struck by a single mother's (Elizabeth Banks) car. It turns out the driver's son knows who has the orb, so the alien-filled ship, now called "Dave Ming Chang," hangs out with the two humans until the rock can be retrieved. But the more the aliens are around humans, the less willing some of them are to rid Earth of its oceans.

Is it any good?

DAVE's ludicrous plot doesn't really matter. What does matter is why director Brian Robbins and Murphy reunited (Norbit was their last collaboration) for another completely forgettable, formulaic movie. There's no doubt that Murphy is a gifted comedian. So it's sad to see that he apparently gives zero thought to his film choices, making any comedy that will get his face on a billboard.

The tiny-aliens idea starts somewhat originally, but the jokes quickly turn to the stupid and stereotypical: A crew member sees a minute of the Broadway show A Chorus Line and starts acting flamboyantly gay, a black alien starts rapping and staring at women's behinds, the engineer becomes obsessed with social networking. And then there's the scene in which "Dave" excretes cash in an Old Navy dressing room. Is that the best that humanity has to offer?

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what humans teach the miniature aliens. How does being on Earth affect them? How do Gina and Josh change from knowing Dave? Discuss some of the stereotypical behavior in the film. Is it offensive or funny?

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