What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this classic family tale is exceedingly G-rated -- for lively songs, fuzzy animals, dancing and cavorting. But watch out for some dated stereotypes, including that of a "Red Indian" called Long Arrow who sends an illiterate message along with an animal he's captured for Doolittle. Women also get second-class status, which is evident when Dolittle claims that he treated Emma "very well," even though she's a female. Children younger than 5 will appreciate the fun and silliness, but may be impatient with the slow first half.
- Families can talk about some of the dated stereotypes in this movie. Which stereotypes did you notice? What was your reaction? Is the movie still enjoyable even with these elements? Do you think people still believe in these kinds of stereotypes?
- Talk about learning different languages (Dolittle knows498), and use it as a jumping off point for encouraging languagedevelopment in their own children.
- The film makes a plea for humans to treat each other with civility and kindness. How can your family encourage kindness? What steps can you take to make the world a more civil place?