Mia and the Migoo

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Mia and the Migoo Movie Poster Image
Magical realism adventure promotes family, environmentalism.
  • PG
  • 2011
  • 92 minutes

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Although this isn't an educational film, it does pose questions about global warming and protecting nature against greed and development.

Positive Messages

The movie's messages about the environment are more alarming than they are positive, but it's still an important lesson to learn about global climate change. There are also less environmental and more personal messages about the importance of father-child relationships and why it's emotional support and attention -- not money or status -- that make a good father.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Mia and her father, Pedro, are great examples of a daughter dedicated to her father and of a father who loves his daughter unconditionally. They provide a perfect contrast to Aldrin and his father -- who for most of the movie is more focused on a business deal than his own son.

Violence & Scariness

Aldrin's father is cruel and greedy in his pursuit of developing the tropical island. He uses fancy weapons that he gets from an impressive arsenal -- including rocket-propelled grenades -- to blow up the tree. Explosions alter the landscape and cause the sky to turn an ominous black. A father is trapped in an underground tunnel and presumed dead by various people.

Sexy Stuff

Mia and Aldrin hold hands and hug.


Insult language like "stupid," "coward," "cheater," and "shut up."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Grown-up men drink while playing cards.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this animated adventure focuses on two things being saved: the environment from corporate greed and a young girl's father from a dire situation. There's some violence -- as evidenced by a businessman who's armed to the teeth with advanced weapons that he plans to use against nature. The language never gets too salty but does include "stupid," "shut up," and similar insults, and there's some brief pushing and shoving and threats made by construction workers who hate their boss. Ultimately the movie's message is pro-nature and pro-family, but there's also some sorcery and magical creatures, which might not be a good fit for families sensitive to those sorts of characters.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bynduns September 7, 2012

An interesting film

This movie is gorgeous, has a generally nice story and a strong role model. Unfortunately, this movie as far as characters are concerned is like Pocahontas wit... Continue reading
Adult Written byRonjasMom February 11, 2020

High-quality film

I'm really surprised that this only has three stars from Common Sense, and not many reviews from parents or kids. I rented it because it contains the type... Continue reading

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

Mia (voiced by Amanda Misquez) hasn't heard from her father, Pedro (Jesse Corti), in a long time and has a vision that she should go look for him. He's actually trapped in an underground tunnel at his work site, which is run by a luxury real-estate development firm headed by Mr. Jekhide (John DiMaggio), who must take his own young son, Aldrin (Vincent Agnello), to a tropical island where he plans to build an exclusive vacation club. Aiding Mia on her trip to the remote island are her dead mother's good luck charms, a sorceress (Whoopi Goldberg), and eventually by the Migoo, a shape-shifting, marshmallow-like creature (Wallace Shawn) that can multiply into various versions of itself and whose job it is to protect the Tree of Life, a special "mother tree" that resides in the middle of the proposed development. Aldrin and Mia band together to both attempt to find Pedro and to try to stop Jekhide from destroying the tree.

Is it any good?

Despite its very obvious environmental message, this lushly animated drama is really the story of a father and daughter's love, and you can't argue with that. French director Jacques-Rémy Girerd won a best animated feature European Film Award in 2009 for this movie, but it took a couple of years for this the beautifully animated adventure to make its way to wide release -- and it's easy to see why. This isn't the typical Pixar or Blue Sky production with marketable heroes and an easy-for-kids-to-follow storyline. There's aren't any A-list comedians voicing the characters, and the movie's message about saving the environment is buried in a mysticism that isn't what many families expect when they go to a matinee together. That said, it's worth expanding your film horizons, and this richly animated, pro-nature, pro-family story is a lovely, memorable film, particularly for mature kids who want something beyond the Happy Meal-toy cartoons.

The Migoo, especially as voiced by Shawn, are sweet and lovable, and they provide a perfect contrast to the hard- and cold-hearted Jekhide, who doesn't have the first clue how to parent his kind, gentle son. The friendship between Aldrin and Mia is adorable and shows just how much a boy and a girl can accomplish if they put their differences aside and work together. And above all, Mia and Pedro's bond conquers every perceivable obstacle so that the father and daughter can be reunited.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's message. How does it propose that we can each make a difference in helping the world? Do you like movies with strong messages about a particular topic?

  • Compare the two father-child pairs in the movie. How are Mia and her father portrayed versus Aldrin and his father? Which characters are role models? Why?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

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Themes & Topics

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