A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this sequel to 2006's The Pink Panther is very similar to its predecessor. It's full of slapstick scenes involving pratfalls, wine bottles, cakes, fires, karate attacks, etc. There's one glimpse of a dead body, and a climactic scene features a gun-wielding criminal. Language is relatively mild -- mostly insults like "idiot" and "stupid" -- and sexual references are limited to a couple of on-going flirtations, allusions to relationships, and one celebratory kiss. Adults drink wine and cocktails.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
After master thief "The Tornado" steals some of the world's greatest treasures -- including the Pink Panther diamond -- Inspector Clouseau (Steve Martin) is selected to join an international "dream team" of detectives to hunt down the renowned cat burglar. Joining him are investigators from Italy (Andy Garcia), England (Alfred Molina), and Japan (Yuki Matsuzaki), as well as an expert on the Tornado's past crimes (played by Bollywood star Aishwarya Rai). As they track down the Tornado, the other detectives grow tired of Clouseau's bumbling, embarrassing ways -- while the inspector and his faithful assistant Nicole (Emily Mortimer) try to not to act on their obvious mutual attraction.
Is it any good?
With such a crack ensemble -- Martin and co-stars John Cleese and Lily Tomlin are renowned comic actors -- audiences are bound to expect a worthy comedy, but they'll be disappointed. Despite the cast's considerable collective talent, they can't rise above the movie's ridiculous dialogue and hammy gags; frankly, it's a downright insult to the memory of comedy legend Peter Sellers and is clearly another example of Hollywood prolonging an undeserving franchise to cash in on the generally easy-to-please family demographic.
There are a few moments when the slapstick does elicit a laugh or two, but in the end, THE PINK PANTHER 2 is one of those sequels that should never have been greenlit. The atrocious accents aren't funny at all, and the Pope jokes sound like they were written by a third grader. In these tight economic times, it would be much better to stay home and rent the original series than encourage Hollywood to keep making more Pink Panther flicks.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the differences between animated violence and cartoonish, live-action violence that features real people in potentially dangerous situations. How do you know when something "violent" is meant to be funny and not scary or real? Families can also discuss why Inspector Clouseau is considered the best detective in the world, even though he acts like such a dimwit. How does he compare to the other detectives? Is his awful French accent funny? For those familiar with the original Pink Panther movies, how do the new ones compare?
- In theaters: February 6, 2009
- On DVD or streaming: June 23, 2009
- Cast: Emily Mortimer, Jean Reno, Steve Martin
- Director: Harald Zwart
- Studio: Columbia Tristar
- Genre: Comedy
- Topics: Adventures
- Run time: 92 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: some suggestive humor, brief mild language and action
- Last updated: November 11, 2020
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