Over the Hedge
By Cynthia Fuchs,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Cute animated tale with some mild scares, cartoon violence.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Characters lie and steal, but learn to appreciate self-declared/non-blood families.
Violence & Scariness
Cartoon violence (characters smashed, flattened, blown up, and crushed); bear threatens to "hunt down and kill" raccoon; human exterminator arrives on scene with traps, poison, explosives; from raccoon's POV, suburban backyard is filled with dangerous items (bug zapper, falling birdbath, sprinklers, knives); woman chases animals with broom; squirrel pretends to be rabid to scare Girl Scout; dog chases raccoon through several yards and over decks, crashing through fences; little girl possum kicked down stairs, appears to be dead.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Mild references to female skunk's "appeal," as she's sent to distract a guardian cat.
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Very mild, occasional language ("shoot!", "butt," "dang"); the turtle calls others "stupid," "naive," and "ignorant."
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Products & Purchases
Dr. Phil on TV; various commercial food products renamed (potato chips in a can, corn chips and cheese curls in bags, candies, etc.).
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Sugar acts like a drug for Hammy.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this animated movie includes a fair amount of cartoon violence. Characters are crushed, blown up, flattened, banged, burned, and bounced -- all in good, Chuck-Jones-influenced fun. Animal protagonists steal food from each other and from unsympathetic humans. When a raccoon steals a bear's winter stash of food, the bear threatens retaliation and the raccoon fools other "foragers" into stealing food from humans to repay the bear and save himself. A human exterminator brings traps and brutal gizmos (his truck is adorned by a man slamming a bunny with a hammer). This exterminator suffers physical abuses (zapped by his own traps). Younger kids will laugh at the obvious stuff and won't get the edgier humor aimed at older audiences, so this is one that several age groups can enjoy together.
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Videos and Photos
Over the Hedge
Based on 29 parent reviews
Great Comic Movie!
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Over The Hedge Movie Review By Logan Strohl
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What's the Story?
This animated animal adventure gets rolling when RJ the raccoon (voiced by Bruce Willis) steals a little red wagon full of treats from a hibernating bear, Vincent (Nick Nolte). Awakened and annoyed, the bear threatens to kill RJ unless he replaces all the missing items (they're smooshed in a traffic accident). RJ hatches a plan to steal convenience foods from recently installed suburban dwellers. While Hammy the squirrel (Steve Carell), shy skunk Stella (Wanda Sykes), and Ozzie, a possum (William Shatner), are easily won over by RJ's scheme, timid tortoise Verne (Garry Shandling) frets that RJ is not to be trusted. But the raccoon is shrewd, and the scenario he lays out -- all food, all the time -- is mighty tempting. So it's not long before everyone scampering into the well-appointed abode of Homeowners' Association President Gladys (Allison Janney). In this new world, "the grass is greener," and the acorn-munching kids discover the great tastes they've been missing: cheese dust, pizza, donuts, and Girl Scout cookies. The animals are not prepared for the humans' ferocious desire to protect their stuff, however, and soon the dastardly exterminator (Thomas Haden Church) arrives, armed with traps and weapons.
Is It Any Good?
Cute and zippy, OVER THE HEDGE offers animal shenanigans, an amusing social critique, songs by Ben Folds, and cartoony explosions galore. It's good fun for everyone!
Plainly inspired by the brilliant Chuck Jones, the movie gets in easy digs at the burbs, a nifty homage to Pepe Le Pew (via Stella's faux-seduction of a Persian "guard cat" [Omid Djalili]), and yet another chance for Willis to make good fun of himself.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the film's satire of life in the suburbs. They could also talk about the lesson RJ and his friends learn: that supporting each other as a family is more important than their individual desires. They could also use the film and its soundtrack to talk to kids about the greater impact of our actions.
- In theaters: May 19, 2006
- On DVD or streaming: October 17, 2006
- Cast: Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, William Shatner
- Directors: Karey Kirkpatrick, Tim Johnson
- Studio: DreamWorks
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Topics: Wild Animals
- Run time: 96 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: for some rude humor and mild comic action.
- Last updated: March 29, 2023
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