The Flintstones

Movie review by
Paul Trandahl, Common Sense Media
The Flintstones Movie Poster Image
Zany cave-age antics leaven too-serious plot.
  • PG
  • 1994
  • 91 minutes

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 7 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

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
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.

What 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.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 8 year old Written bycone March 17, 2011
Adult Written byLowe's man September 1, 2014

Bill Hanna, Joe Barbera and Steven Spielberg knew how to make the cartoon translate to live-action.

The scantily clad secretary and the depiction of some of the other women characters should make parents think twice about whether or not to let children under 7... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old March 3, 2012

Meh.....

An entertaining yet brainless film, chock-full of stereotypes and gross-out humor. Not much I can say here.
Teen, 15 years old Written byhomealonefan123 December 17, 2011

awesome movie for the entire family

awesome movie for the whole family!!!! but 1 swear.

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?

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.

Talk to your kids 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

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