Parents' Guide to

The Secret of the Magic Gourd

By Joly Herman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 5+

Magical tale teaches moral lesson.

Movie G 2007 85 minutes
The Secret of the Magic Gourd Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 7+

Based on 1 parent review

age 7+

One thing I would have liked to know beforehand...

This was a very good aesop /fable like tale of a boy who is not doing his things he should do responsibly (study for school and clean his room, etc) and finds that those things being done for him (so that he doesn't have to lift a finger) is not necessarily better. The moral of the story being nothing falls from heaven and you must work hard to achieve your goals. Its a feel good film and I'm a bit of a sap so a few tears formed at the end of this "feel good" movie. If I had known that the version I watched would be in Mandarin with subtitles I may have never seen it. Glad I did because between me reading them aloud and my son's reading and the very cute special effects he enjoyed it as well.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Traditional ways and the modern themes marry nicely in this enchanting tale. Based on the story "The Secret of the Magic Gourd," by Zhang Tian Yi, the film broaches a cultural subject that will appeal to young American viewers: what happens when a child is given everything he desires. In the telling, there are some interesting cultural markers not often seen in American films for kids. For example, Raymond's grandmother does all of the cooking and cleaning for the family. She cares for the children in a traditional way, telling them stories and clipping their toenails. Raymond's father rarely smiles, grinning only when Raymond wins the swimming championship.

Look closely and notice the advanced math and science that the kids are doing in class. See how they ride their bikes without helmets and hike in the forest with a fishing rod and a bucket. Moreover, a strange-looking gourd with mythological powers transforms a kid's life on a grand scale. Kids can discover a bit about what it means to grow up in China today, while learning a moral lesson about hard work and integrity.

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