Watch It

On DVD: Now | On Blu-ray: Now

Free Birds Review Critics


Dave White Profile

Angry at birds. Read full review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 2.0

    out of 100

    Generally unfavorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 50

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly

    In the end, the jokes simply aren’t funny enough to lift these flight-challenged fowl off the ground.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    Variety Justin Chang

    A cute but disposable item were it not for the story’s weird racial undertow.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    Village Voice Stephanie Zacharek

    Like so many modern animated features, Free Birds packs too much in; the picture feels cramped and cluttered, and, despite its occasionally manic action, it moves as slowly as a fattened bird waddling toward its doom.

    Read Full Review

  • 60

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter

    Although it seldom approaches the inspiration of its plucky premise... Free Birds nevertheless manages to avoid being branded a holiday turkey.

    Read Full Review

  • 63

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Bill Zwecker

    While the overall concept of the script is pretty creative and original, at several points along the way the storyline gets a bit muddled.

    Read Full Review

  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Free Birds is pleasant enough holiday fare. And kudos to the animators for transforming a rather unattractive — or at least unappreciated — species into a cast of endearing characters.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Free Birds reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 6+

Clever idea turns bland in turkey-focused holiday fare.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Free Birds is an animated time-travel adventure that tells the story of the first Thanksgiving from the perspective of the turkeys desperate to keep the Pilgrims and Native Americans from leading to the annual destruction of their kind. There's some gun violence and an important character is killed. The language includes some insults like "dumb" and "coward," plus there's some borderline insensitive depictions of turkeys as similar to Native Americans. Plus, there's a romantic subplot and glimpses of a telenovela where a man is always surrounded by beautiful women. Families may enjoy discussing the history of Thanksgiving.

  • Families can talk about how Free Birds compares to other Thanksgiving-set movies.
  • Does the movie change your opinion about eating turkey at Thanksgiving? Do you think the movie has a "vegeterian agenda" as some critics have suggested?
  • Is it culturally insensitive for the turkeys to wear headdresses and generally look like they're Native Americans?

The good stuff
  • educationalvalue true2

    Educational value: Kids will hear the same trivia about the First Thanksgiving that they probably learned in school: that in 1621, a group of English settlers at Plymouth Colony (the Pilgrims) and members of the local Indian tribe (the Wampanoag) shared in an autumnal feast together that included wild turkey. The animated Pilgrims also make it clear that they needed to trade with the Wampanoag to survive.

  • message true0

    Messages: There's a message of collaboration, teamwork, leadership, and working toward the greater good. However there's also a borderline insensitive depiction of wild turkeys as being a lot like Native Americans.

  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: Jake is devoted to helping the turkey cause; Jenny is a strong female character who's a great leader. The Chief is wise and self sacrificing. Reggie learns how to be a turkey who is part of something bigger than himself.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence and scariness: The Secret Service hold guns. The Pilgrims hunt with guns. Myles Standish uses fire and guns to destroy the turkey habitat. The turkeys fight back.

  • sex false0

    Sexy stuff: Reggie watches a telenovela about a loner who is always surrounded by beautiful women. Reggie falls almost immediately in love with Jenny, whose turkey body is a human-like hourglass figure with large breasts. They flirt and eventually kiss.

  • language false0

    Language: Insults like "dumb," "son of a gun," "coward," "the anti-corn."

  • consumerism false2

    Consumerism: Some of the pizza boxes say "Chuck-E-Cheese"; there's an overt reference to Angry Birds, Old Navy, and Auntie Anne's.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not applicable