The Flintstones

  • Review Date: September 13, 2005
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 1994
  • Running Time: 91 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Zany cave-age antics leaven too-serious plot.
  • Review Date: September 13, 2005
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 1994
  • Running Time: 91 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The major female characters are either housewives or sexpots. While the movie presents a racially integrated supporting cast, jokes are made at the expense of "Neanderthals."

Violence & scariness

Pebbles and Bam Bam are kidnapped and threatened by the villain. Plenty of comic pratfalls. Barney punches Fred in one scene. Villain of the story apparently dies when he's covered with cement.

Sexy stuff

Fred flirts with his knockout secretary. In another scene, he gets rid of an overly affectionate Dino by threatening to get him "fixed."

Language

A couple mild curse words.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

We see "Sharon Stone" smoking a prehistoric cigarette. Fred clearly likes to throw back a few drinks, and comes home drunk in one scene.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that kids will hear some mild cursing and see plenty of cartoon violence. Faithful to the original, this movie also contains references to sex, plus onscreen drinking and smoking. There is also plenty of 1950s-style stereotyping of men and women both. Female characters are either housewives or sexpots. Men drink, bowl, attend lodge meetings, and are putty in the hands of non-wife sexpots. However, it is worth noting that the theme of personal sacrifice to help one's friends is stressed throughout the movie.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Fred Flintstone is promoted to corporate executive, then framed for embezzlement in this live-action version of the popular cartoon series. Flintstone (John Goodman) and Barney Rubble (Rick Moranis) work in the rock quarries of the prehistoric town of Bedrock. Fred loans Barney money from his and Wilma's (Elizabeth Perkins) savings account so Barney and Betty (Rosie O'Donnell) can adopt a child. Meanwhile, creepy executive Cliff Vandercave plans to promote one of his quarry workers to vice president, using an aptitude test to find a suitable candidate. Fred gets the promotion, with a little help from Barney. Unfortunately, it's all a setup. Vandercave plans to frame the new VP in an embezzlement scheme, and Fred's growing egotism at this promotion causes a rift between the former best pals -- especially when Fred is forced to fire Barney. Can the two make up in time to prevent Fred from going to jail, and get Barney his job back?

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Live-action versions of cartoon hits should be approached with caution; if an idea works well as a cartoon, it's unlikely to have the same impact in live action, and vice versa. THE FLINTSTONES actually makes the transition reasonably smoothly, thanks to clever casting and an eclectic display of wacky creatures (computer-generated and puppets). Much of the original series' humor, faithfully recreated here, stems from the fact that the Stone Age world had primitive versions of modern conveniences. Some of these gags, however, are more grotesque when not in cartoon form, but many kids will find this outlandish humor funny.

But Barney and Betty's attempts to adopt a baby, their subsequent financial troubles, and management vs. labor subplots are too serious and at odds with the absurd tone of the rest of the movie. Nevertheless, most kids will enjoy the preposterous world of The Flintstones. The prequel, The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas, is even better for kids, retaining this movie's virtues, but eliminating the dour elements.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about movie remakes and nostalagia. Why make a movie that essentially reproduces a cartoon most popular when many of today's parents were children? Do you think it's harder or easier than creating new characters, new themes, new stories? Is there an element of safety in remaking a once-popular movie or TV series?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:May 23, 1994
DVD release date:October 14, 1997
Cast:John Goodman, Rick Moranis, Rosie O'Donnell
Director:Brian Levant
Studio:Universal Pictures
Genre:Comedy
Topics:Friendship
Run time:91 minutes
MPAA rating:PG
MPAA explanation:Parental Guidance Suggested

This review of The Flintstones was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

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  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 9 years old January 8, 2011
AGE
11
QUALITY
 
people aim guns at others but miss and a police man falls off a building
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Kid, 9 years old August 8, 2011
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

it'alright

i enjoyed it i don't remenber any drug use but i remember the inuendo
What other families should know
Too much sex
Kid, 12 years old April 11, 2011
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

Zany and pathetic Flintstone movie

Idiotic icarnation of the classic 60s cartoon.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing

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