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Babe: Pig in the City Review

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 8+

Darker than the original, not for very young kids.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that while generally directed at kids, this sequel is scarier and more suspenseful than Babe, the very light-hearted original. There are a number of life-threatening incidents involving dogs, cats, and monkeys, as well as Babe and Ferdie, the duck; they're in danger throughout the film. Included are chase sequences (some with snarling dogs and bared teeth), falls, near drownings, and run-ins with frightening authorities who capture and cage the animals. In addition, numerous accidents happen to Farmer Hoggett and Mrs. Hoggett, and Babe is separated from his owner for a lengthy period of time in a turbulent city.

  • Families can talk about tolerance and accepting others.

The good stuff
  • educationalvalue true1

    Educational value: Introduces a caring chimpanzee family, and details the family relationship after the birth of two chimp babies.  

  • message true2

    Messages: Promotes the idea that "a kind and steady heart can mend a sorry world."  The fact that acts of caring and unselfishness can affect very positive change is illustrated by Babe's rescue of a ferocious dog, after which the animal has a change of heart and becomes protective and loyal to Babe and his friends. 

  • rolemodels true4

    Role models: Babe is an exemplary character. When making a decision, the pig opts for the unselfish, generous, and compassionate choice in every case. He is a role model for all the other characters and they become better beings because of him. Authorities (dog catchers, airport security people) are cartoonishly mean-spirited and unfeeling. Parental figures, Farmer and Mrs. Hoggett, consistently treat their animals well and go to great lengths to assure their well-being.  

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence and scariness: Though exaggerated and farcical, there are many action sequences in which animals are in jeopardy, including savage, chained dogs chasing Babe; Ferdie, the beloved duck, being a target on a shooting range; a fish left to die without water; a wheelchair-bound dog dragged by a truck; officers catching homeless animals and locking them up. Farmer Hoggett takes a bad fall down a well and is severely injured; Mrs. Hoggett is arrested and manhandled more than once;  and a clown is carried off on a stretcher, unmoving and obviously very ill.

  • sex false0

    Sexy stuff: One scene shows numerous females in bikinis. Mrs. Hoggett is taken away by airport authorities, and the implication is that she will be strip-searched.

  • language false0

    Language: Not an issue

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not an issue