Meet Dave

  • Review Date: November 24, 2008
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2008
  • Running Time: 95 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Not as crass as Norbit, but as forgettable.
  • Review Date: November 24, 2008
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2008
  • Running Time: 95 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

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.

Violence & scariness

"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.

Sexy stuff

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.

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.

Parents say

Kids say

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?

QUALITY
 

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?

Families can talk 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?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:July 11, 2008
DVD release date:November 24, 2008
Cast:Eddie Murphy, Elizabeth Banks, Gabrielle Union
Director:Brian Robbins
Studio:Twentieth Century Fox
Genre:Comedy
Topics:Robots, Space and aliens
Run time:95 minutes
MPAA rating:PG
MPAA explanation:bawdy and suggestive humor, action and some language.

This review of Meet Dave was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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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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What parents and kids say

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Parent of a 7 and 10 year old Written byMattmchugh February 14, 2011
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

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 collective unconscious dead-on. Unfortunately, there's not a lot of wit or wisdom it how it extrapolates the premise. Even worse, along they way, there's some jokes playing off racial and sexual stereotypes that really don't belong in sub-PG-13 territory. Those may zip past littler kids, but you may find yourself having to explain to older pre-teens what's funny (or not) about an African-American bugging his eyes out at a woman's backside and yelling "Daaamn!" or a tough guy who, after watching about ten seconds of a musical, develops a lisp and a fashion obsession. Politically incorrect jokes may have a place, but probably really not in your younger kids video library.
Teen, 13 years old Written byHardy330 June 13, 2009
AGE
2
QUALITY
 
It's funny and entertaining the only thing that may concern others is a character turns out to be gay .
Kid, 11 years old January 7, 2010
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

great if you need a laught

A truely halerious movie i couldnt stop laugthing. the violent bits like he gets hit by a car, arent violent at all dave isnt even get hurt!!! =)
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models

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