Tom & Jerry

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Tom & Jerry Movie Poster Image
Disappointing reboot has lots of cartoonish violence.
  • PG
  • 2021
  • 101 minutes

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 8 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 38 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Intended for entertainment purposes, but it may spark an interest in New York City.

Positive Messages

Emphasizes importance of being honest (as well as facing the consequences of your lies), teamwork, and healthy communication in relationships. But conflict is frequently dealt with via violence.

Positive Role Models

Despite constantly feuding, Tom and Jerry have a short truce and come together when it's going to benefit the other characters. They're persistent and dedicated -- to battling each other. Kayla is determined, hardworking, but also lies repeatedly at first about her qualifications and to a prospective job applicant. But she apologizes, proves herself reliable and trustworthy.

Violence & Scariness

Lots of cat-and-mouse chases, injuries, slapstick action. Mostly Tom, but also Jerry and Spike get hurt in various ways, including getting hit by cars; smashing into doors, walls, windows, and trash cans; falling repeatedly to the ground (sometimes from very high up); getting electrocuted/hit by lightning; nearly being stomped on by elephants and chased by a tiger; etc. Use of weapons including axe, mallet, chainsaw, etc. A military-level drone goes rogue, starts terrorizing hotel guests (off-screen). Tom and Jerry wreak serious damage on hotel property. An agitated pair of elephants and a tiger scare guests. Alley cats threaten Tom on the street and in the pound, which is somewhat frightening (Tom and Jerry are thrown in a cage). Alley cats tell Tom he has to eat Jerry or they will. 

Sexy Stuff

A couple hugs and holds hands. On their wedding day, the married couple kisses. Two employees flirt with each other. Tom is in love with a female cat. Nonsexual "nudity": Jerry sits on a copier and makes photocopies of himself, including one of his butt.

Language

Insults like "He's a fraud!" and "They certainly wouldn't hire you," and "What a sucker." A fish thinks of a poop emoji in a thought bubble. A man makes a joke playing off the word "Wi-Fi" by saying "Why the 'Fi' not?" A couple of uses of "Oh my God" or "My God." Potty humor includes jokes about Spike's farts, as well as a scene of him doing his business (it's off-camera, but he's grunting, and the human walking him is disgusted and mentions all the burritos Spike ate, and having to "scoop the poop.").

Consumerism

Not much on-screen besides Martinelli's Apple Cider, but there are off-screen merchandising tie-ins to Tom and Jerry generally and to this version specifically.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A few scenes at a hotel bar and of adults drinking champagne, wine, and cocktails for dinner or receptions. Tom takes a sip and spits it out, Jerry sips too. In one scene, Tom and Jerry look like they're drinking a bottle of sparkling wine, but the label of sparkling apple cider is visible if you look closely. Jerry eats olives out of a martini glass.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Tom & Jerry is based on the classic Tom and Jerry franchise that constantly (and violently) pits a cartoon mouse and cat against each other. This Manhattan-set adventure -- a mix of computer-generated animation and live-action comedy -- has Jerry Mouse crossing paths with his rival Tom Cat while looking for a place to live. But the main storyline focuses on Kayla (Chloe Grace Moretz), a young woman who talks her way into a job at a posh hotel just before the wedding of the year. When Tom and Jerry take their antics to the hotel, chaos ensues. As in all Tom and Jerry outings, you can expect a lot of slapstick cartoon violence, with an added kick here because it's depicted against a live-action backdrop. There are tons of physical comedy sight gags, like characters (mostly Tom) getting electrocuted, hit by lightning, and then electrocuted again, or falling from telephone wires or high-rise windows, or smashing into any conceivable door, roof, window, etc. Tom is even hit by a car. Potty humor is also in the mix, courtesy of Spike the dog (he literally does his business, loudly, in a scene that shows everything but the actual poop). Language includes some insults and a couple of utterances of "my God," characters (both human and animal) are shown sampling drinks, and there's mild romance: Tom falls for a female cat, characters flirt, and a couple shares a wedding-day hug and kiss.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byMother. May 29, 2021

Parents Watch it Before You Allow Your Kids to Watch it

Children deserve a better movie. They need to experience meaning and depth. These love sick movies, "cheat to get to the top," "we will put you u... Continue reading
Adult Written byMovie TV February 27, 2021

This movie is great!

I really enjoyed this film. The storyline is intriguing and follows the classic duo as they go through New York City and the slapstick and comedy are on point.... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byTbird26 February 26, 2021

When Tom and Jerry are doing their thing the film shines for a few moments but otherwise everything else is flat, dull, boring, not funny, and very underwhelming

Even when the trailer came out I knew it wasn’t going to be good but I didn’t expect it to be this bad. It is better then most films but definitely the worst fi... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byleoreviews February 26, 2021

Dissapointing

I just wish that people who make movies for kids can actually care about the audience but now, all people care about it is money plus it can just teach to to ju... Continue reading

What's the story?

In TOM & JERRY -- which is live action except for all of the animals, who are animated (think Roger Rabbit) -- Jerry Mouse bumps into Tom Cat, who dreams of making it big as a pianist, while looking for housing in Manhattan. Jerry causes Tom's piano to break, and from then on it's war ... until Jerry sneaks into the fancy Royal Palace Hotel and takes up residence. Meanwhile, Kayla (Chloe Grace Moretz), who lost a job due to a run-in with Tom and Jerry, talks her way into a new gig at the Royal Palace on the events planning team, which is led by the stuffy Terence (Michael Peña). The hotel is hosting the wedding of socialite couple Preeta (Pallavi Sharda) and Ben (Colin Jost), so when Jerry is spotted, Kayla enlists Tom's help to capture the clever little mouse.

Is it any good?

The latest reboot of this decades-old franchise is neither clever enough to win over new fans nor nostalgic enough to engage the generations raised on the cat-and-mouse shenanigans. While only some of the straight-to-DVD Tom and Jerry cartoons have been better than decent, at least they center on the title characters, even when they're thrown into existing storylines like Robin Hood, The Wizard of Oz, or a big Sherlock Holmes or fairytale crossover. Here, however, Tom and Jerry are secondary characters -- and, what's worse, the main plot isn't especially entertaining, particularly for kids who aren't going to care about a millennial who's trying to keep her day job or a society couple's over-the-top wedding.

There's no doubt that younger kids may still enjoy the physical (if violent) shenanigans at the heart of the action, although it's possible some may feel slightly unsettled by seeing animals repeatedly hurting each other in a realistic, live-action environment. It's just not quite as funny as it is in a purely cartoon world. Despite the presence of well-known actors like Moretz, Peńa, and Jost, as well as Rob Delaney and Ken Jeong, Tom & Jerry's screenplay is flat and in no way shows off the cast's comedic talent. Just because kids will laugh at the chase scenes and poop jokes doesn't make the movie worthy of a family-night selection. Not that anyone was clamoring for it, but fans of this iconic duo deserve a reboot that's worth their time.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the violence in Tom & Jerry. Does the fact that everything is live-action except the animals affect the impact or portrayal of the violence?

  • Who, if anyone, do you think exemplifies positive character strengths? Which character strengths are highlighted in the movie?

  • Why do you think Tom and Jerry cartoons and movies continue to be made after so many years? How do you think the characters and their stories have aged with the times? 

  • What other Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters would you like to see make a comeback?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love animated fun

Themes & Topics

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