Tooth Fairy

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Tooth Fairy Movie Poster Image
Sweet but uninspired fantasy is fine for families.
  • PG
  • 2010
  • 85 minutes

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 26 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 39 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Children learn the value of holding onto their fantasies.

Positive Messages

The movie's overwhelming messages are that dreams are important and that kids must be allowed to have fantasies and believe in magic and possibility.

Positive Role Models & Representations

For most of the movie, Derek is an anti-role model -- always squashing people's dreams, acting surly, and complaining about his bad luck. But by the end, of course, he's redeemed himself and learned the value of truly believing in something and how having dreams can lead to bettering yourself.

Violence & Scariness

Hockey is a violent sport, so on the ice, there are a fair number of falls and tussles -- one resulting in shattered glass and a tooth flying artfully out of a player's mouth. Off the ice, there are many comedic pratfalls and chases.

Sexy Stuff

Derek and Carly share a few brief kisses and embraces, and it's implied that it's not uncommon for them to spend the night at each other's homes. Two middle-schoolers flirt innocently. Derek and several of his fellow players are shirtless in a locker-room scene.

Language

Mostly name-calling and insults like "shut up," "old man," "dang fool," and "emo boy." One "hell."

Consumerism

Like any sports venue, the rink where the Ice Wolves play is plastered with company logos -- in this case, for Dunkin Donuts and Direct TV. Other brands featured include Corvette, Apple (Macs and iPods), BlackBerry, California Pizza Kitchen, ESPN, and the NHL.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this fantasy comedy starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is generally age-appropriate for young tweens and up. Like most family comedies featuring action stars, there's some rude language that you won't want your kids repeating (mostly insults like "shut up" and "fool") and violence -- in this case, players slamming into each other during hockey games (in one scene, a player ends up with a missing tooth). But also as expected, The Rock's surly character ultimately transforms into a sweet guy who believes in the power of dreams.

User Reviews

Parent of a 6 and 9 year old Written bygot2garden January 23, 2010
This was cute and enjoyable to watch. It was WAY better than The Spy Next Door and deserves more stars. My six year old and I both enjoyed it.
Parent of a 9 and 11 year old Written bybrown_eyed_girl June 28, 2010

Not amazing cinema but great cast & family friendly comedy

This was a very sweet movie that appealed to our entire family. The plot was a little hokey at times but the messages of friendship, hope, and the importance of... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old November 12, 2010

Dissapointing. Leaves me hanging big time.

Stupid. Dumb. I was expecting much more. I usaully like Dwayne Johnson, but this movie was a wreck.
Teen, 13 years old Written byPinkgirl13 March 14, 2010
One word: HILARIOUS!!!!!!!!!!!

What's the story?

Derek "The Tooth Fairy" Thompson (Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson) is a mean minor-league hockey player with a chip on his shoulder. Once a pro, he's best known in the minors for accruing the most penalties in the league by smashing into opponents so hard they lose a tooth. He takes pleasure in telling young fans to lower their expectations and stop having unrealistic dreams. After nearly ruining the tooth fairy fantasy for his girlfriend Carly's (Ashley Judd) little girl, he's summoned to Tooth Fairy Land for the crime of Dissemination of Disbelief. Derek appears before fairy judge Lily (Julie Andrews), who sentences him to spend two weeks as a tooth fairy -- complete with wings, stockinged feet, and a personal caseworker, Tracy (Stephen Merchant). On call to collect teeth at a moment's notice, Derek's new job challenges his beliefs, his relationship with Carly, and his hockey performance -- ultimately for the better.

Is it any good?

The Rock has the powerful body of Arnold Schwarzenegger and the easy charm of Vince Vaughn, with a blindingly white smile that's hard to ignore. That's not a bad combination for a comedy, but it's gangly, bug-eyed British comedian Merchant (Ricky Gervais' creative partner in crime) who steals the show in this sugar-sweet kids' fantasy. It's not that the movie is completely awful, but it is awfully derivative and absolutely nothing parents haven't seen before. But with his dry wit and hilarious body language, Merchant at least livens up some of the bland jokes and predictable sight gags. The Rock looks comfortable enough, but there's just not much to his character that isn't summed up in the trailer.

It's always good to see Andrews in any capacity, and it's an even bigger treat to see Billy Crystal, who somehow came out of live-action semi-retirement to play the fairy in charge of gadgets. It's unclear why he chose this particular movie to grace with an uncredited performance, but his Jerry the Fairy is, along with Merchant's Tracy, one of the best reasons to see what's otherwise a so-so movie with a lovely but obvious message about children -- and adults -- needing to have dreams. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's messages about dreams and fantasy. Is there a middle ground between Derek's dream-killing stance and someone whose dreams might seem far out of reach?

  • Derek relies on his tough-guy persona and good looks. Is this a negative role model for boys and young men?

  • Is the action-star-in-a-family-comedy genre predictable? Did you know generally what would happen at the end? Was the happy ending less satisfying because it was so obvious?

Movie details

Themes & Topics

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