Parents' Guide to

The Flight Before Christmas

By Nancy Davis Kho, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Wolves will scare younger kids in this holiday feature.

Movie G 2008 80 minutes
The Flight Before Christmas Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 6+

Based on 4 parent reviews

age 9+

Not for those who value good parent-child relationships or for purists.

Although this is scary for younger children, the level of scariness is appropriate for the age group it's aimed at. That's not where the problem is. The problem is that the main character's biological father won't accept his son and is so critical of his son's mistakes that he feels very badly about himself. The father is, in fact, so mean that he makes Simon Cowell look like Mister Rogers. But the worst part is that Santa's reindeer are all different. What happened to Rudolph, Dasher, Comet, etc. That all by itself makes this special bad.
age 8+

Good holiday movie

This movie was clearly a classic and had appropriate content the wolves are not scary and did not bother my kids

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (4 ):
Kids say (2 ):

This movie is beautifully animated and imagined, and that may be part of its problem. The wolves are truly scary, and the fact that they are chasing Niko and his herd is bad enough; then they decide to eat Santa. The subplot about Niko determining which of the Flying Force reindeer is his father borders on creepy, especially as his mother relays the tale of her one magical night with Daddy Reindeer and the arrival of Niko 10 months later.

As a singing and wisecracking weasel Wilma, Emma Roberts has a small part, although she's got top billing in the credits. MacDonald is much more affecting as the flying squirrel Julius, whose only family is Niko and whose bravery is much more compelling than that of the preening and silly Flying Forces. This is not a movie that embodies the Christmas spirit, but for kids who can withstand the wolves it's a quirky coming-of-age tale.

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