A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
From the movie's opening disclaimer warning that "This is not a film for overprotective parents" to the content from beginning to end, the message bubbling just underneath the surface of this movie is that someone must be some kind of humorless PC worry-wart not to find humor or entertainment value in kids urinating on adults, kids and adults tasting baby feces, a young boy feeding his baby sister worms to eat, close-ups of an infant girl eating a snail, a young boy and an infant girl nearly getting killed by sitting on wolf traps, said young boy and infant getting chased by wolves, and falling backwards onto a branch and nearly falling into water below.
Positive Role Models
A hobo who has been urinated on by a young boy and gets a face full of baby feces wants everyone to know, "I am not a toilet." Jojo feeds his infant sister worms. The narrator of the film informs the audience that Jojo's "hands were only good for holding onto his wiener and pissing on bugs and critters." Jojo's grandmother is shown to be an independent rural woman because she shoots a rifle at men who try to dump their old couches in the ditch on her property and because she gave Jojo, a young boy, a pocketknife.
Violence & Scariness
Intense peril. An infant somehow ends up on a wolf trap on the verge of getting trapped in its jaws. Same for a young boy. These kids are chased by wolves, nearly fall into water from a high-enough branch. Before this, they get into a car accident in which they fall into a ditch and their mother is presumed dead. A grandmother fires a rifle at two guys trying to dump a couch in a ditch on her property. Kids are chased by an angry homeless man, angry because he was urinated on and got baby feces on his face. This homeless man fights wolves. He also gets hit in the groin area.
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A young boy uses words like "pissing," sucks," "Jesus."
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Products & Purchases
Skittles featured prominently in one scene.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Adventure of Jojo (And His Little Sister Avila) is a 2014 movie about a boy who must take care of his infant sister after a car accident and get them back to their grandmother's house. The opening disclaimer reads, "This is not a film for overprotective parents." That opening disclaimer sets the tone for the movie, and it's a tone that seems determined to troll said "overprotective parents." In other words, you the viewer must be some kind of hyper-sensitive PC-fuddy duddy not to find humor in scenes in which: a young boy and an infant somehow end up on top of a wolf trap and nearly get trapped, getting chased by wolves, nearly drowning, a little boy fond of "pissing on bugs and critters" urinating on adults, a young boy feeding his baby sister worms, the baby sister eating a snail off the ground (shell and all, even if she does spit out the shell a bit later), and tasting and getting hit by baby feces. A "hobo," who gets hit with little-boy urine and little-baby feces, is a human punchline (he doesn't have a home and is therefore not very bright) and yells punchlines like, "I am not a toilet!" A young boy uses words like "pissing," sucks," "Jesus." Also, for some reason, guys who look like they might be in a mafia movie take someone out of their trunk in a garbage bag, hit him a few times with baseball bats, then throw him into the river. Perhaps this would all be bearable for some if the acting wasn't cringe-worthy and the story was more concerned with story rather than shock value. Also, irony of ironies, for all the movie's lamenting of the days when kids ran wild and had more freedom, if the mother and kids in the car accident had not been wearing their seatbelts in the "real world," they would have been gravely injured, if not killed. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This movie may have had good intentions but it fails on every level. It's easy to understand why someone might want to make a movie like this. The Adventure of Jojo (And His Little Sister Avila) seems to be pining for the carefree childhoods of the '70s and '80s, of helmet-less BMX and skateboard rides, road trips without seatbelts in the proverbial "way, way back" of smoke-filled station wagons, and going through life without a (gasp) smartphone or even a cell phone to check in every two hours. It's easy to see how some might think the parents of today are "overprotective" and that the problem, like everything in society, is a product of that old chestnut, "political correctness."
The movie feels like it's trying to "troll" so-called "overprotective parents," and that if you dislike this movie, well, you must be some kind of hyper-sensitive "snowflake" who doesn't want anything in the world to ever be offensive to anyone ever. However, it's possible not to enjoy scenes of little kids urinating on "hobos" and "bugs and critters," scenes of little kids and adults tasting or getting hit by baby feces, of an infant girl and little boy somehow ending up seated on opened wolf traps on the verge of springing and killing them, of a little boy holding his infant sister upside down by the ankles in order to retrieve a pocketknife that fell out of reach, without being "too uptight" to see the clear and obvious entertainment value. No, it's not the fault of "overprotective parents" that this movie is so awful. Incredibly bad acting, lousy production values, and a storyline more interested in shock value than a coherent storyline are the reasons.
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