A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Moonbase 8 is a comedy series about three wannabe astronauts training in a simulated moon base in Arizona. The show stars John C. Reilly, Tim Heidecker, and Fred Armisen, who are all known for absurdist sketch comedy and anti-comedy. But Moonbase 8 plays mostly like a traditional, straightforward sitcom. It builds comedy around the astronauts' general unpreparedness for their mission. Jokes come from the natural and scientific disasters that happen along the way, which sometimes lead to peril and cause the characters great harm. Bodily function humor is also a big part of the show. For example, at one point the characters drink urine. They also drink alcohol, sometimes to excess. Language includes "bitch," "damn," "hell," etc. Otherwise, the content is largely typical sitcom fare: silliness, misunderstandings, and learning from disastrous mistakes.
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What's the story?
MOONBASE 8 tells the story of four aspiring astronauts. Cap (John C. Reilly) is a former helicopter pilot trying to start a new life. Skip (Fred Armisen) is the son of an astronaut following in his father's footsteps. Rook (Tim Heidecker) is a devout Christian who wants to spread the gospel to the universe. And Super Bowl Winner Travis Kelce is taking a break from his day job as tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs. The team lives on a simulation moon base in Arizona, performing the work of regular astronauts with the hope of one day going into space.
Is it any good?
Tim Heidecker, Fred Armisen, and John C. Reilly have each built a reputation and found fame for surreal, edgy sketch comedy. Astronaut training that isolates them from the outside world is a smart way to make a pandemic comedy without having to ever even mention it. The set-up provides them with plenty of material for comic bits, but doesn't really play to their strengths of pushing absurdist comedy and anti-comedy to their limits. Still, it's fun to see the three actors working together, even if Moonbase 8 doesn't allow them to go as far with their humor as their fans might hope and expect.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about astronaut training. What do we know about the characters' mission? Where are they? What does their day-to-day life consist of? How will that routine contribute to -- or impede -- their success?
What made the characters want to be astronauts? How does this affect how they do their jobs? What are their strengths and weaknesses as prospective astronauts?
How do the characters cope with living in isolation? What specific challenges does the moon base present? How successful are the characters at coping with their environment? How well do they cope with one another?
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