Rainbow Tribe

Movie review by
Brian Costello, Common Sense Media
Rainbow Tribe Movie Poster Image
Tween camp dramedy filled with potty humor, iffy behavior.
  • PG
  • 2011
  • 90 minutes

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 3 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Somewhere in this move is the idea that efforts to see the good inside children with behavioral issues will pay off, but this message is lost with the over-the-top deplorable behavior and sheer unlikeability of most of the kids.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Most of the kids in this movie are terrible role models and stereotypes. For instance, in the first five minutes of the movie, a boy farts on his dog, dunks his brother in the toilet, and whips him in the crotch with a towel. And that's just the first five minutes. Later, this same boy is shown urinating on the front wall of his camp building.


Kids engage in a food fight. Characters are hit in the crotch with towels and tennis balls. A boy is hit in the head with an oar. A boy gives his younger brother a head dunk in a toilet. A boy at camp tosses fruit bats in the air and smashes them with a tennis racket, killing one. A boy gives another boy a wedgie. A bully camper blows snot into a bowl of food to be eaten by other campers. This same bully is often shown shoving other campers as he walks past.


A hypochondriac boy makes reference to gonorrhea. Two boys argue about what puberty is, and one of the boys tells the other that he bets he doesn't have "hair on his pickle" yet. A boy draws faces on his hands and has them sing a comedic song about Herman putting the sperm in Myrna.


"Ass," "pissed." Characters call each other names like "jerkbag," "stupid," and "buttface." A boy character gets halfway through saying the F-word before stopping. A character sings a song about a man named Herman putting the sperm in a woman named Myrna and getting her pregnant. A boy writes "4th Grade Sucks" in giant letters with white-out on his desk. The camp counselor makes up a song about boogers and has the kids sing along with it.


A boy makes reference to X-Box, Game Boy, Tivo, and iPod.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Rainbow Tribe is a summer camp dramedy filled with potty humor and inappropriate behavior. In the first five minutes of the film, a boy wakes up in his underwear, scratches his backside, passes gas on his dog, shoves his brother's head in a toilet, and whips him with a towel in the crotch, causing the little brother to fall to the floor writhing in agony. The behavior doesn't improve in the following 85 minutes. The drama aspect of the movie centers on a middle-aged man sick with cancer who returns to the summer camp of his youth to find peace, but this story is overwhelmed by the awful shenanigans of the unlikable camp kids.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byGchandmom July 26, 2019

Too many references to male genitalia for a so called "Family Movie"

I didn't watch the movie, I listened to it while my children watched on the DVD player in our mini van.... I am very particular about reading reviews befo... Continue reading
Adult Written bybruce h. June 23, 2017

the rainbow tribe ... a 2nd opinion

Good for kids struggling to fit in, including the shy, so called "well behaved" ones in that it shows how and why kids act out. AND how it's not... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old August 27, 2013

NOT worth it...AT ALL!

I'm just gonna go straight to the point DON'T WATCH IT! SOO inappropriate, I didn't even get half way through it. Turned it off thinking that... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old May 12, 2013

Rainbow Tribe: Thumbs up or down?

Rainbow tribe is a comedy about a man with cancer who decides to become a camp counsler. This movie has a lot of rude humor, toilet jokes and mild language. I g... Continue reading

What's the story?

Morgan Roberts, aka "Chief" (David James Elliott), is a middle-aged man sick from cancer. In the hopes of returning to a happier time and place, he goes back to the summer camp of his youth, where he will work as a camp counselor. He renews his friendship with childhood camp friend Sunny (Ed Quinn) and looks forward to a tranquil summer of counseling by day, then staring at the Northern Lights by night. Instead, what he gets is the ragtag obnoxious kids of Camp Apache, an out-of-control bunch who would rather pass gas and start food fights than ride in canoes or sing campfire songs. As Chief learns to tame this wild bunch, he grows to like them, and as he teaches them, he finds that they are teaching him about life, growing up, and growing old.

Is it any good?

The problem with THE RAINBOW TRIBE is that it's trying to be both a drama and a comedy, and fails at both. While Chief returns to the summer camp of his childhood to try and make sense of his life at middle-age while he struggles against cancer, you're more inclined to feel sorry for him because he has to deal with such obnoxious and unlikable boys. The serious message of the film is easily overwhelmed by the immature hijinks of the tween boy campers as they wedgie, pass gas, and make one inappropriate reference after another.

Amidst the Rich Kid, the Tough Kid, the Obnoxious Brat, the Hippie Kid, the Asthmatic Kid, and the Silent Kid, only the Silent Kid is the least bit likeable, and that's because he doesn't say anything until, predictably, the end of the movie. The rest of the kids epitomize the term "bad role models," and their actions will fill impressionable tweens and younger kids with iffy ideas and inappropriate jokes to carry them into puberty.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about role models. Does watching characters behave poorly have an influence on you?

  • How does this film compare with other movies set in summer camps?

  • How do the different boys in Camp Apache stand apart from one another? What are their different personality traits, and how are they brought to life through their actions? Do you notice any stereotypes?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love humor

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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