A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The special is intended to entertain rather than to educate.
Kids learn that fancy trappings like decorations, games, and music aren’t the source of Christmas spirit, which is instead found in making people happy and being with the people you care about. Potty humor includes a scene showing a character blowing a bubble out of a kazoo that he removed from his nose.
Positive Role Models
The characters must set aside their differences to create a special holiday event for the kids who are counting on them. Their methods are questionable (stealing a public Christmas tree, hijacking a truck, and interrogating a charity Santa, for instance), but their intentions are good.
Violence & Scariness
Characters slap each other and survive long falls, and a man dressed as Santa is hit by a truck, but all of it is intended to be funny and doesn’t lead to injury.
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No cursing, but there’s some substitute swearing like “oh, sugarplums" -- as well as words like “lame,” “stupid,” and “shut it” that parents might not want their kids to repeat.
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Products & Purchases
This holiday special is part of The Penguins of Madagascar series.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this holiday special is a merry addition to the popular animated series The Penguins of Madagascar, and most of its content is worry-free for kids. There’s some mild language (“shut it,” “stupid,” and “oh, sugarplums”) that you might not want your kids repeating, and the characters’ problem-solving tactics are questionable at best (stealing a tree because it’s the biggest, for instance), but viewed in the intended humorous light, the special is mostly harmless for older kids. Very young kids might be upset at scenes that show a Santa figure tied up and slapped or hit by a truck, so use your judgment if this kind of material bothers your kids. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
These crafty characters and their Mission: Impossible-style escapades are surefire fun for kids, and this merry holiday special is no exception. The story also incorporates feel-good messages about the true spirit of Christmas and the joy that’s found in being with friends and in bringing joy to others.
As is typical with this crew, there's some language (“stupid,” “lame,” “shut it,” and “oh, sugarplums,” for instance) that parents probably won’t want kids using, and it’s a good idea to make sure that kids can identify the humor in the totally unrealistic content. What violence exists is there for comedy, but very young kids might not like to see a Santa character tied up and slapped or hit by a truck.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.