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Parents' Guide to


By M. Faust, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 6+

An eccentric take on Popeye and friends.

Movie PG 1980 113 minutes
Popeye Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 14+

Shows her in her underwear one time

age 5+

Decent live action version of cartoon

Those familiar with and enjoyed the cartoon will appreciate this one. Otherwise the eccentric nature and exaggerated performances will be lost on the viewer and leave them confused

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5 ):
Kids say (10 ):

Perhaps the best word to describe this film is "eccentric." Popeye is one of those movies that you either love or hate. Director Robert Altman and writer Jules Pfeiffer took their inspiration from the original newspaper comic strips, in which Popeye and the residents of Sweethaven offered commentary on the hard times of the 1930s. The performers do an admirable job of enlivening the characters, but those characters are sometimes so charmless that you wonder why they bothered. Shelly Duvall is especially good at portraying Olive Oyl, though a little of her goes a long way. Robin Williams has Popeye's gait and mumble, but his dialogue seldom rewards the effort it takes to hear it.

Altman put obvious effort and expense into designing the town of Sweethaven, but his trademark style, in which the camera seems to drift aimlessly around, is poorly suited to showing it off. Altman has a similar problem with the songs Harry Nilsson composed for the movie -- they're often lovely, but given the naturalistic style in which they're used, they simply fade away before we can notice them.

Movie Details

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