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Parents' Guide to

The Snail and the Whale

By Danny Brogan, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 3+

Joyful animation champions adventure, courage, friendship.

Movie NR 2021 27 minutes
The Snail and the Whale poster

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 3+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 3+
age 2+

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (11 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Adapted from another book by hugely popular kids' author Julia Donaldson, this 27-minute adventure is perfect family viewing. The Snail and the Whale join the likes of The Gruffalo and Stick Man in offering a beautifully told and animated short story that teaches -- or reminds, as the case maybe -- of some important life lessons. Oscar-winner Hawkins voices the snail with a sense of adventure, while Brydon is uncharacteristically understated, adding his dulcet tones to the whale who shows the snail the world. Add to that the late Diana Rigg, who provides the rhythmic narration to Donaldson's words, and beautifully rendered animation, and you know you're in very safe hands.

As has become expected from Donaldson adaptations, the film is packed with plenty of positive messages. These include following your dreams, embracing the unknown, and helping others, all of which are shown to require courage. It's to the film's credit that none of this feels force-fed, instead trusting the viewer to pick up these messages themselves. There's the occasional moment of jeopardy -- the snail and whale encounter some sharks, and later the whale ends up beached on the shore. But once again, the film confidently knows its audience and manages the stakes perfectly. The Snail and the Whale is another welcome addition to the stable of Donaldson-book adaptations.

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