Two boys hypnotize their surly principal into acting like a made-up superhero. Based on thepopular book series.
IS IT ANY GOOD? (GRADE: B)
For its first 20 minutes, Captain Underpants is exceptional. High-spirited and surprisingly witty, the film brilliantly captures and spoofs elementary school life. The setup is brilliant and the relationships are well-realized. Once the titular Captain Underpants makes his first appearance, the movie takes a slight dip in quality as an overreliance on superhero clichés, hyper storytelling, and potty humor sets in. To be clear, it’s still funny and continues to have marvelous moments, but a tad of the sheen is lost. No matter, kids will love it (mine did), adults will enjoy it (I did), and it’s a fine way to beat the summer heat.
IS IT OKAY FOR YOUR KIDS?
Captain Underpants is rated PG. There are jokes about diarrhea, urination, and “poopy pants.” A grown man is seen in nothing but underwear and a cape (his appearance is comical and not at all sexualized). There is an abundance of slapstick humor and comical violence. A boy tells his friend that “like-liking” someone usually doesn’t last after marriage.
ANY WORTHWHILE MESSAGES?
Deception doesn’t last and the truth always comes out. Often the cruelest people need kindness the most. Friendship can help you to endure anything.
For another rollicking animated superhero adventure, check out The Incredibles! Rent or buy ithere!
Jonathan Decker is the clinical director of Your Family Expert. He is a licensed marriage and family therapist, husband, and father of five. Jonathan earned a masters degree in family therapy from Auburn University as well as a bachelor’s degree in clinical psychology from Brigham Young University. He is an actor, author, and television personality.