[Screen It]

 

"KAZAAM"
(1996) (Shaquille O'Neal, Francis Capra) (PG)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild *Minor Moderate Mild None
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild Minor Minor None Mild
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
None Minor Heavy Mild Moderate


QUICK TAKE:
Children's Adventure: A troubled kid gets his own genie who must grant any three wishes he requests.
PLOT:
Max Conner (FRANCIS CAPRA) is a troubled kid. He doesn't get along with his mother, he's recently found out that she's finalizing a divorce with his real father (who's been gone since he was two), and a gang of older boys routinely beat him up to steal his money. It's during one of these times that the gang chases him into an abandoned building where he accidentally releases Kazaam (SHAQUILLE O'NEAL), a 5,000 year old genie. Kazaam must grant Max any three wishes the boy wants. Of course Max initially wants material things, but eventually figures he might be able to wish his parents to be back together again. So he goes to see his dad who works at a rap nightclub (and pirates music tapes and CD's) and introduces himself. They get along okay until the club's owner puts the squeeze on Max's dad to find out who this "rapping" genie is. Of course, Kazaam can't grant any love wishes to get the parents back together and has become too busy being a rap star to be granting wishes. By the end, Max and his dad are fighting off the bad guys and Kazaam must come to the rescue.
WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Probably. Shaq will draw a lot and others will be drawn to the similarity to Disney's "Aladdin" from several years back.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
For action violence and language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • FRANCIS CAPRA plays a rotten kid who skips school and talks back to his mother. Granted he's had a tough background, but even still, he's not a good role model.
  • SHAQUILLE O'NEAL plays the genie who at first talks in almost Biblical rhyme, but is soon drawn into the hip hop world of rap. He alternates from childish pranks on Max to trying to be smooth with the ladies, and as far as a genie goes, we suppose would be an okay role model.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    OUR TAKE: 2 out of 10
    Forget this one. For kids this movie's too dark, depressing, and violent. There's a heavy emphasis on divorce and in the end both Max and his felon dad are dead (but are brought back by Kazaam). For adults, there's nothing to keep their interest as the story just flounders about and doesn't nearly take enough advantage of the "magic" that should be present in a "genie with three wishes" story. In addition, the preponderance of rap music will probably drive parents crazy and make them wonder if this film is just a promotional vehicle for the rap artists in it. As far as acting, O'Neal is okay in his role, but isn't given much to work with. We give this one just a 2 out of 10.
    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Pass this film by. Kids will find this boring compared to Disney's "Aladdin," which is more fun and better suited for kids (no divorce or bad guys beating up your dad). It's strange that the film makers didn't add more "magic" to the plot and thus create more appeal for kids. Instead they focus on being "hip" and thus there's a ton of rap music throughout. Worse yet, the movie gets downright violent and deadly at the end. There are many fights and both Max and his father are killed by the club's owner (the father's is implied while Max is pushed down a warehouse shaft). Of course they're brought back to life by Kazaam at the end, and everything turns out happy, but by then the mood has already been set and can't be changed by a quick, everything's okay ending. Definitely a bad movie for kids of any age.

    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • People drink wine at the rap club.
  • People later are seen drinking wine and beer at the club.
  • Kazaam, the club owner, and a woman drink champagne.
  • Kazaam and a woman drink wine at a restaurant.
  • BLOOD/ GORE
  • The club owner eats goat eyes (as a delicacy). Nothing bloody, but we know what they are and they're slimy, etc...
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Max is cutting class and runs a key along the lockers scratching them.
  • Some older school kids yank Max into the bathroom, pin him to the floor and take his money.
  • Max isn't respectful at all of his hard working mother or her boyfriend (at least not until the very end of the movie). He talks back to her (she tells him "Watch your mouth" and he shoots back, "Watch yours") and other times ignores what she says.
  • Max, upon first meeting Kazaam, tells him, "I wish I was as big as you and not as stupid."
  • Max's dad treats him like a stupid kid until Max finally tells him who he is.
  • Max's dad and the other people in the club are involved in a tape and CD piracy scheme.
  • The "older kid" gang races into the club's loading dock and attacks a worker who's carrying a recording artist's master tape in a case. He tries to beat them off, but they grab the case and flee. Later they want Max to tell his dad that they're blackmailing him for the tape.
  • Max cuts school again.
  • The "older kid" gang now likes Max because he led them into the loading dock area where they stole the tape.
  • Kazaam, now a budding rap star, lets fame go to his head and he starts to neglect his "genie duties."
  • FRIGHTENING/TENSE SCENES
  • The "older kid" gang chases Max through the streets and eventually into an old building. Max tries to hide from the kids, but ends up falling through several floors of the dilapidated building. The gang runs down to get Max, but then they encounter Kazaam (who scares the other kids away).
  • There are two fight scenes between Max's dad and the bad guys, and Kazaam and the bad guys that younger kids might find tense.
  • Max is seen dead on the floor of the warehouse (after he was pushed down a shaft by the owner) and Kazaam carries him, distraught over his death. Of course Kazaam's remorse brings Max back to life, but this could be upsetting to kids.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Max is cutting class and runs a key along the lockers scratching them.
  • Phrases: "Dork," "Loser," "Wuss," "Turd," "You little fart," "I'm gonna kick your butt" (said in a competition), "Bite me," "Sucks," "You smell like a hippopotamus butt," and "Stupid."
  • Max puts his feet onto the kitchen table (which his mother sees and makes him put down).
  • Max tells his mother (when she's after him for not being a good kid), "Put a screw in your shorts."
  • A man snuffs out his cigarette in the palm of his hand.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • A door suddenly bursts open as Max is looking for his dad in the club.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • There's just some minor suspenseful music here and there, but nothing that would scare most kids.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • 4 hells, 1 crap, 1 damn, and 1 use each of "Oh my God" and "Jesus."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • None.
  • SMOKING
  • Some guys on the street smoke.
  • One of the club's bad guys smokes a cigarette and then snuffs it out in his palm.
  • A man smokes a cigarette.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • There is a lot of focus on Max's parents getting a divorce. He also finds out that his mother knew where his father was all along (she evidently had told Max that she didn't know where his father was). He goes to see his dad (who doesn't know him since he left when Max was two) who treats him badly until Max finally tells him who he is. They get along for a little bit, but then his dad turns mean again. Max's goal (and wish) is to get his parents back together again, but it's not to be in this movie.
  • Max's mom and her boyfriend tell Max that they want to get engaged, and Max isn't happy about this stating that the boyfriend will never replace his "dad."
  • Max's dad essentially tells Max to hit the road and to never try to be like him (a felon), but Max sees this just as rejection and is very upset.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Divorce and new stepparents.
  • Genies and granting wishes.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Some older school kids yank Max into the bathroom, pin him to the floor and take his money.
  • Threat: An older kid shows Max the fake key he earlier gave them and says, "There's only one place this is gonna fit, and it ain't the closet."
  • The "older kid" gang chases Max through the streets and eventually into an old building where Max ends up falling through several floors of the old dilapidated structure. The kids get ready to punch Max when Kazaam shows up. Two kids try to attack Kazaam but he brushes them off like flies and then scares the rest of them away.
  • It's implied that the gang beats up Max when he runs into them later. We hear the beginning sounds of a beating and later see him bruised.
  • Kazaam tells someone (in subtitles and paraphrased), "May the fleas of a thousand camels feast on your lower regions." (or something similar to that).
  • Max swings at Kazaam (who holds him away at arms length) after Kazaam magically tied Max's shoe laces together.
  • Max's dad and a co-worker get into a loud argument which ends with Max's dad pushing the guy into a wall (after the guy says he wants no part of the tape piracy business) and then throwing Max out of the building.
  • The "older kid" gang races into the club's loading dock and attacks a worker who's carrying a recording artist's master tape in a case. He tries to beat them off, but they grab the case and flee.
  • Max throws a baseball that hits Kazaam in the face after he shows up in Max's bed (nothing sexual).
  • Max comes across some bad guys (led by the club owner) beating up his dad (for losing the master tape). His dad tells the owner that he'll get the tape back and the owner says, "Will I find a loyal friend, or someone at the bottom of a lake?"
  • The owner bashes Max's dad on the head, knocking him out and warns Max, "If you try anything clever, your dear father, Nick, will wake up dead."
  • The owner grabs Max by the throat and threatens him. Max's dad gets up, fights off the other bad guys (punches, knees to the stomach) and escapes with Max.
  • Max and his dad run into the bad guys again and the owner ends up pushing Max down a warehouse shaft. His dad is seen unconscious with duct tape covering his mouth.
  • Kazaam fights with all of the bad guys (lots of punching, kicking and throwing guys across the warehouse) and one guy hits something electrical which shocks him and ignites some nearby flammable liquid. The place catches on fire. Kazaam picks up the owner by the throat and then crushes him down into basketball size and then slam dunks him.
  • Max is seen dead on the floor of the warehouse (after he was pushed down a shaft by the owner) and Kazaam carries him, distraught over his death. Of course Kazaam's remorse brings Max back to life, but this could be upsetting to kids.



  • Reviewed July 18, 1996

    Other new and recent reviews include:

    [Collateral Beauty] [La La Land] [Manchester By The Sea] [Rogue One: A Star Wars Story]

    Privacy Statement and Terms of Use and Disclaimer
    By entering this site you acknowledge to having read and agreed to the above conditions.

    All Rights Reserved,
    ©1996-2017 Screen It, Inc.