Tall Tales from the Magical Garden of Antoon Krings

Movie review by
Renee Schonfeld, Common Sense Media
Tall Tales from the Magical Garden of Antoon Krings Movie Poster Image
Cute beehive-and-bug tale with lots of cartoon action.
  • PG
  • 2019
  • 88 minutes

Parents say

age 8+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

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We think this movie stands out for:

A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Meant to entertain rather than educate.

Positive Messages

Promotes living in harmony, cooperation, second chances, hard work, freedom. "We always have a choice to do the right thing."

Positive Role Models & Representations

Queen Marguerite illustrates fine leadership qualities: compassion, determination, bravery, responsibility. Apollo the Cricket makes mistakes but always rises to the occasion; he too is brave, resourceful, loyal. Villains are either power-hungry and/or struggling to survive.

Violence & Scariness

Heavy cartoon action during last half of film. A scary bat menaces the garden. The evil Wendy Wasp sneers, cackles, and wreaks havoc, fear, violence. A gang of "pests" threatens the peaceful community. Action includes swordplay, falls, chases, a wasp attack, endangered baby bees, a kidnapping, characters held hostage, a possible beheading.

Sexy Stuff

Some mild insults and name-calling (e.g., "idiot").

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A party appears to include drinking (most likely honey).

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Tall Tales from the Magical Garden of Antoon Krings is a French animated tale based upon the children's book Droles de Petites Betes. Antoon Krings, the author of this and other books in a popular series, is one of the directors of this movie, which has been adapted from the French for English-speaking audiences. Adorable bees and bugs fight to save their hive and garden from an array of villains. Viewers can expect lots of cartoon action and jeopardy. Power-hungry (or just plain hungry) evil-doers cackle, menace, and threaten with bodily harm. There are chases, attacks, captures, sword battles, and a possible beheading, with the good guys trying to survive scary-looking creatures (including a vampire bat and wicked wasps). Some mild insults and name-calling include words like "idiot." Otherwise, the charmingly drawn heroes, along with the insect and bee population, are endearing and have distinctive personalities. Caution: Too many scares for kids who are not yet comfortable with real versus pretend violence.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byNic S. November 9, 2019

Boring, just boring

I hear this movie might have had some violence in it so I put 8 and up. But we all fell asleep before that happened! It was sooooo slow and felt like it was a... Continue reading

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What's the story?

Traveling entertainer Apollo the Cricket (voiced by Justin Long) -- he sings, he juggles, he's a magician -- is down on his luck in TALL TALES FROM THE MAGICAL GARDEN OF ANTOON KRINGS. When he arrives in a beautiful garden, sees a wonderfully active beehive, and meets some of the insect folks who live there, especially the Queen Bee Marguerite (Kate Mara), Apollo thinks he may have stumbled into a wonderful life. But it's not to be. After a romantic nighttime outing with Marguerite, Apollo finds himself in the middle of a whole lot of trouble. A very jealous Wendy the Wasp (Laurie Hymes) has been waiting for the opportunity to seize the hive and take over the garden. Apollo becomes her innocent dupe, and along with a preening wasp army, a terrifying vampire bat, and a collection of mean and hungry pests, Wendy attempts her conquest. Queen Marguerite is kidnapped and life in the garden is disrupted, perhaps forever. Realizing his mistake and teaming up with a ragtag army of bees and insects, even some surprising ones, Apollo does the only thing he can do: Save the day, rescue the Queen, and give up life on the road.

Is it any good?

Sparkling animation and endearing characters live in this comic adventure that includes treachery, a palace coup, cackling villains, and a possible beheading among its many action sequences. The plot has twists and turns and a triumvirate of villains. It's not an original tale -- a power-grabbing "cousin," a far-too-trusting innocent, and a grand finale of derring-do and comeuppance -- but if the kids who watch are mature enough to understand the difference between real and imaginary violence, there's enough to recommend Tall Tales from the Magical Garden of Antoon Krings.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the impact of media violence on kids. How does your family determine which films are OK for the kids in your household? Which scenes or characters in Tall Tales from the Magical Garden of Antoon Krings might be particularly disturbing for kids who aren't ready to distinguish between actual violence and imaginary violence?

  • Marguerite says, "We always have a choice to do the right thing." Why do you think that the "pests" became part of the Queen's team instead of Wendy's? 

  • How do the bees and bugs in Tall Tales from the Magical Garden of Antoon Krings demonstrate important character traits like teamwork and courage?

Movie details

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