Home Movies

Common Sense Media says

Witty animated show about young filmmaker is best for teens.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

The series portrays Brendon’s filmmaking efforts as worthy and artistic ventures, requiring creativity, imagination, and focus. That said, it also delves into complex family issues, touching on divorce, absent and neglectful parents, and the complicated relations within blended families.

Positive role models

Brendon and his friends are devoted to making movies, and they sometimes neglect their schoolwork to focus on filming. They're also willing to sneak into places to film scenes and break rules in pursuit of getting the shot. Their parents run the gamut from very involved and supportive to completely absent.


Moderate cartoon antics that fall short of actual fighting.

Not applicable

Characters call each other “stupid” and say “shut up" and "ass." Some references to bodily functions, as characters sometimes “gotta pee” or throw up.


Some episodes have references to well-known movies.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

One of the adult characters has a drinking problem.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that although this series about a boy who likes to make movies with his best friends is animated, it often explores relatively mature topics about families, marriage, and divorce. There’s not too much in the way of swearing, sex, or violence, but the jokes and themes might not be very entertaining for young viewers. The main character, Brendon, lives with his single mom, while his friend Jason seems to have little contact with his parents. The kids themselves must often bend a few rules in order to plan and shoot the scenes for their movies.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Brendon (voiced by HOME MOVIES creator/writer Brendon Small) is a budding filmmaker at age 8. Along with his best friends Jason (H. Jon Benjamin) and Melissa (Melissa Bardin Galsky), he’s constantly planning his next shoot, talking about dialogue, or filming a scene. This clever animated series shows the lengths that a persistent young artist is willing to go to pursue his craft, even if it sometimes means ignoring homework or bending a few rules to gain access to just the right location for a key sequence.

Is it any good?


While Home Movies (which originally aired from 1999-2004) is about three young kids, the show's jokes and situations are clearly aimed at an older audience. When the series isn't focused on Brendon’s films, it also touches on family relationships. Brendon lives with his single mom and adopted sister and sometimes interacts with his dad and stepmother. Jason and Melissa also seem to have vaguely dysfunctional relationships with their parents (although, really, who doesn’t?).

In this series, the kids have to deal with many of the same issues as real-world kids -- including divorce, under-employed parents, and watching their single parents negotiate the dating world. Brendon’s entertaining films offer the trio an entertaining and creative escape and sometimes seem like a metaphor for needing to escape.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about divorce. What do you think about the way Brendon’s single mom is portrayed? What about his dad and step-mother? Does this seem like an accurate look at divorce? If your parents are divorced, or if you have friends whose parents are divorced, does this show get it right?

  • What do you think about Brendon’s devotion to making movies? Is he showing an early interest in the craft, or is he a bit too focused on his hobby?

TV details

Cast:Brendon Small, H. Jon Benjamin, Melissa Bardin Galsky
Network:Cartoon Network
TV rating:TV-14
Available on:DVD

This review of Home Movies was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Parent of a 4, 5, and 7 year old Written by23momof3 July 1, 2010

My daughter watches this show and i have no problem with it.

My daughter watches this show and i have no problem with it. There are very few consens for me the do use words like ass but that is the only cuss word i have heard. I have not heard of any sexuality at all in this show. That is very hard to find and it is a nice show.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Kid, 10 years old March 25, 2010

Home Movies

Okay... I think this is ok for 9 and up I've heard the curses but i think the strongest words are beeped.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Great role models
Teen, 13 years old Written byDestroyer334545 August 12, 2013


It's very Mature, watch out for some of the episodes in season four
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Digital Compass