Parents' Guide to

The Brave Little Toaster

By Nancy Davis Kho, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 5+

Appliances make a suspenseful, incredible journey.

Movie NR 1987 90 minutes
The Brave Little Toaster Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 8+

Based on 12 parent reviews

age 8+


When I was around 6, my mother left me in the nursery while she went shopping at the grocery store, and the babysitter let us watch this movie. I was TRAUMATIZED when I saw it. It gave me nightmares for weeks. These scenes include the air conditioner blowing up, the lamp getting struck by lightning, the infamous clown scene (which made me cry), and the scene where the cars were being smashed by the compactor. The scene with the compactor was the worst. About 8 cars are crushed into little tiny cubes that looked like bouillion cubes. Moreover, the cars are singing about death on the way to the compactor, and there is this big magnet picking them up that has these menacing eyes. Also, the compactor has these really menacing teeth that repeatedly open and close as the cars are being brought to it. This scene was entirely inappropriate for a children's film, as the cars are anthropomorphic in nature and you grow to care for them just before their lives are cut tragically short (I'm 22 years old and I still get tears in my eyes when I think about it. Maybe I'm just too sensitive). Anyway, I say all of that to tell parents not to let little children see this movie. At an older age they may be able to handle it, but why would they want to? There are so many better cartoons out there.
1 person found this helpful.
age 13+

Too scary for children

Do not show this to children, whatever you do. They will have nightmares. There is scary stuff galore. Lampy sacrifices himself during a storm to recharge the battery. Toaster has a horrible nightmare. There is a musical sequence at the dump in which the cars sing about their past while awaiting being crushed. Some try to escape, but fail. The Master is nearly crushed by the compactor, but is saved by Toaster sacrificing himself by throwing himself into the gears at the last minute. The worst is the air conditioner scene, which is designed after the work of Jack Nicholson. Wait until your kids are in high school at youngest.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (12):
Kids say (23):

Disney's THE BRAVE LITTLE TOASTER, which was written by sci-fi writer Thomas M. Disch, makes the audience root for the appliances and their plucky determination. It also opens the door to a dialogue about the disposable culture in which we live, where appliances can be dumped in favor of a newer model even when they work just fine. The animation seems a bit dated and grainy, but it somehow acts to reinforce the notion that the appliances are out of pace with their city competitors.

Visual comedy is at a minimum, though the scenes of the appliances considering different transportation modes (pogo sticks, refrigerators on wheels) are funny. Most of the humor comes from the smartly written dialogue and Radio (Jon Lovitz) runs away with all the good lines, as when he tells shorted-out Kirby to recover by making "even carpet sweeping motions!" Another nice touch is the appliances who seem to be channeling Hollywood celebrities, like the air conditioner who sounds suspiciously like Jack Nicholson. Children younger than 5 might enjoy the story but be frightened by the strong imagery -- even if it's just appliances being hurt, they're appliances the audience grows to care about.

Movie Details

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