A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that VeggieTales: Minnesota Cuke and the Search for Samson's Hairbrush is the title of the longest story in this three-segment collection. Two are sweet animated stories about "what God says to do about bullies." The message encourages everyone to find a way to love everyone else, including one's enemies. Some parents may question the usefulness of this dictum as it would apply in extreme bullying situations. Scariness is limited to a wave of melted ice cream that threatens to sweep away Minnesota Cuke's friend, but he rescues her before any harm is done. Canadians are jokingly portrayed as evil.
What's the story?
In the main segment, Minnesota Cuke is an earnest, fedora-wearing history buff always on the lookout for exhibits for his children's museum. When he hears that evil Canadians are planning to take over both sides of Niagara Falls ("But they already have the good side," someone observes), he volunteers to finds Samson's Hairbrush, a mythical power tool that will enable the Canadians to do their dastardly deed if they're not intercepted. The evil Canadian, Professor Rattan, stays a few steps ahead of the cuke, finally swiping the hairbrush, only to learn that, as the Bible's wisdom explains, the hairbrush has no real power. The real power we all have, we're told, is the power of love. The cuke then uses it to reform the professor.
Is it any good?
Small children may be charmed by the notion of talking vegetables. "A cousin of mine was pounded," says a cute little green pea after a bully threatens him. "He's soup now." And the notion of evil Canadians is milked for all it's worth, although that one will certainly go over the heads of 4-year-olds. This is a good-hearted and well-intended piece designed to make kids smile. It's best for Christian families, as non-believers may find the religious content heavy-handed.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about bullying. After he's bullied on the playground, Junior's friend asks him if she should tell Junior's parents about the incident. He says no. Why do you think Junior didn't want his parents to know about something as upsetting as bullying? Might his parents have been able to help him if they'd known what he was going through?
Why do you think bullies act the way they do? Is it possible they might really be afraid or unhappy about something themselves?
Do you think being nice to a bully could turn the bully into a nicer person? Why, or why not?
For kids who love preschool tales
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