VeggieTales: Rack, Shack & Benny
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this story from the Christian-based Veggie Tales franchise is a humorous retelling of a biblical story that deals with peer pressure. One action sequence in which the three heroes try to escape from a fiery furnace may be scary or too intense for the very youngest kids. Generally, however, cheery songs and funny characters serve to drive home the film's primary messages: No matter what everybody else is doing, do what you know is right, and stand up for what you believe in.
What's the story?
Rack, Shack, and Benny, three lovable Veggies, work hard in a chocolate factory. To celebrate the completion of two million chocolate bunnies, the workers are given 30 minutes to eat as many of the chocolate bunnies as they want. Rack, Shack, and Benny, remembering the words of their parents, know that too much candy will make them sick, so they stop eating. When they're the only laborers left standing -- all the others have collapsed with stomach aches -- the boss, Mr. Nezzer, promotes the three Veggies. Their good behavior has paid off. But another challenge is ahead. Mr. Nezzer believes his newest creation, a giant chocolate bunny, is all-powerful and magnificent. He orders everyone in the factory to bow down to the giant bunny and sing a song to honor him. Once again, Rack, Shack, and Benny realize that what they're being asked to do is wrong and would send a very bad message. They refuse to follow Mr. Nezzer's orders even when they're threatened...only a miracle can save them.
Is it any good?
It's another of the engaging Veggie Tales Bible stories turned into understandable life lessons for kids. Like many, this one is filled with catchy music (the bilingual Silly Song interlude is a stand-out), lovable cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, etc., and lots of humor, some of it appealing to grownups as well.
The messages aren't subtle, neither are the biblical references, in this case portions of The Book of Daniel and 2nd Thessalonians 2:15, "Stand firm and hold to the teaches passed on to you." Ironically, though the subtitle of this episode is "A Lesson In Handling Peer Pressure," the filmmakers changed the original lyrics of one song after parents complained about the content.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about how wanting to be liked and accepted by our friends sometimes makes it hard for us to do what we know is right. What are some things you might say if you don't want to go along with the crowd?
Being tempted by others to misbehave or do something hurtful can happen at any age. Has it happened to you? Maybe parents and older siblings can share some of their experiences with peer pressure.
What did the other workers and even Mr. Nezzer learn from Rack's, Shack's, and Benny's behavior? Do you think they might stand up for what's right next time? How can your actions influence others?