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"PINOCCHIO"
(2002) (Roberto Benigni, Carlo GiuffreŽ) (G)

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


QUICK TAKE:
Children's: A wooden puppet comes to life and then gets into various forms of trouble while wanting to become a real boy.
PLOT:
When a large log finds itself at his doorstep, elderly craftsman Geppetto (CARLO GIUFFREŽ, voice of DAVID SUCHET) decides he'll carve a puppet from it. Naming his creation Pinocchio (ROBERTO BENIGNI, voice of BRECKIN MEYER) and imagining him as the son he never had, Geppetto is surprised when the puppet comes to life as an eager but mischievous boy.

He ends up selling his coat so that Pinocchio can attend school, but the puppet doesn't want to go and ends up falling prey to various distractions, including the efforts of the Fox (MAX CAVALLARI, voice of CHEECH MARIN) and the Cat (BRUNO ARENA, voice of EDDIE GRIFFIN) in conning him out of his money.

Pinocchio does have help along the way, however, in the form of the talking Cricket (voice of JOHN CLEESE) who serves as his conscience of sorts. Then there's the magical Fairy (NICOLETTA BRASCHI, voice of GLENN CLOSE) who periodically saves him from his various predicaments and wants to use her powers to transform him into a real boy, but will only do so when he shows that he can be good.

He tries to do so, but repeatedly ends up meeting various interesting characters, such as Leonardo (KIM ROSSI STUART, voice of TOPHER GRACE), a young thief, who tempt him with various opportunities that threaten to further corrupt him. With Geppetto out searching for his missing boy, Pinocchio eventually realizes that lying and other forms of bad behavior aren't nice and then sets out to prove that he's worthy of the Fairy's magic.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
It's hard to tell. While it's a children's story, the live-action aspect might dissuade some from being interested in it, while teens will likely show no interest toward it.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: G
For not containing material to warrant a higher rating.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • ROBERTO BENIGNI plays the wooden puppet that comes to and is full of life, but doesn't want to act like a well-behaved boy. He lies and breaks promises, and gets into all sorts of trouble, resulting in him wanting to be and do good (which he eventually does).
  • NICOLETTA BRASCHI plays the magical Fairy who encourages Pinocchio to be good so that she'll have reason to turn him into a real boy.
  • CRICKET is the butler-like insect who serves as Pinocchio's conscience and tries to tell him what and what not to do.
  • CARLO GIUFFRE plays the elderly craftsman who carves Pinocchio from a log and then wants him to be his real son. He spends much of the movie looking for him when he's gone.
  • MAX CAVALLARI and BRUNO ARENA play two conniving characters who try to and eventually succeed at conning Pinocchio out of his money.
  • KIM ROSSI STUART plays a young thief who befriends Pinocchio but then leads him into temptation and trouble.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a quick look at the content found in this children's film that's been rated G. Despite the rating, the film has various scenes that could be unsettling, suspenseful or even downright frightening to younger kids (but that's all dependent on their age, level of maturity and tolerance for such material). They include a huge shark approaching and then swallowing Pinocchio, what look like several apparent deaths (although we later learn the characters are okay) as well as a character dying in front of the protagonist.

    Some slapstick style material is present, as are some attempts on others' lives. A boy is knocked unconscious when hit on the head and the protagonist gets his leg stuck in a large animal trap. Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, while some imitative behavior is present as is some wine in several scenes.

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Some barrels of wine break open and pour into a village fountain.
  • The Fox, the Cat and others have wine.
  • Some "kids" (looking like adults) open a bottle of champagne, but we only see the cork flying up into the air.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • None.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Pinocchio doesn't want to play by the rules of life and therefore gets into trouble. That causes him to lie and break promises from time to time.
  • For those opposed to magic, various characters, such as the Fairy, possess and use that ability.
  • The Cat and the Fox set up Pinocchio so that they can rob him (and end up hanging him by a noose while trying to rob him in disguise). They later take his money by fooling him.
  • We learn that Leonardo is a thief (he stole some stuff and wants to steal more).
  • A farmer leaves Pinocchio's leg in a trap and then keeps him on his farm where he makes him serve as his guard dog (having to stay outside in the rain).
  • A man lures various boys to his FunForeverLand where he entices them with fun and no chores so that he can somehow cause them to turn into donkeys and then sell them to others for labor.
  • A man uses a riding crop to strike a donkey just out of meanness.
  • A ringmaster repeatedly hits a donkey (really a transformed Pinocchio) on the head with his top hat during a performance.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" along with the following may be unsettling, suspenseful or maybe even scary to very young kids, but older ones might not have any such reaction.
  • Pinocchio enters the Grand Puppet Theater and sees various marionettes in action (appearing as adult humans controlled by strings from above). A huge human (their owner) then enters carrying a whip and the marionettes cower in fear. We then see that he has Pinocchio strung up and announces he's going to eat him, but that never happens.
  • Pinocchio makes his way through the dark and foggy woods at night as some suspenseful music plays. He then runs through the woods after the Cricket mentions assassins and he and we then see two cloaked figures coming after him. He goes to the Fairy's house hoping for help, but the cloaked figures grab and drag him off into the woods. We then see that they've strung him above a branch with his arms tied behind his back (we couldn't quite tell if they had a later seen noose around his neck, but the appearance is that they hanged him). Kids may worry that he's dead when he stops moving and some doctors say that he is dead (after being removed and taken to the Fairy's home), but he's later okay.
  • The Fairy tells Pinocchio that he's sick and will die if he doesn't take some medicine. Just then, several rabbit like creatures enter the room carrying a coffin (and that prompts him to take the medicine).
  • Some kids may worry when Pinocchio comes across the grave of the Fairy, but we later see her alive and well.
  • Pinocchio sees his father's boat tip over in the ocean and his father go in. Pinocchio then jumps from the rocky shore to save him, but we only later see that Pinocchio has washed up on the shore with no sign of the father (who we later see alive).
  • Pinocchio discovers some boys playing with his hat and wrestling over it. He then joins the fray with some struggling, but a boy ends up throwing a book that hits another on the head, eventually causing him to stumble and fall to the street unconscious. There's talk that the boy is dead, but we then hear that he's not.
  • The Cricket barely avoids being hit by various people by accident (including by a mallet), but is then hit between two cymbals.
  • As Leonardo continues his transformation into a donkey (he already has ears and a tail), he panics, wonders what's happening to him and pleads for Pinocchio to help him (which might be unsettling for kids).
  • For those sensitive to violence against animals, a man uses a riding crop to strike a donkey just out of meanness, while a ringmaster repeatedly hits a donkey (really a transformed Pinocchio) on the head with his top hat during a performance.
  • A ringmaster tells his men to throw an apparently hurt donkey (really a transformed Pinocchio) into the ocean from the rocky shore and we see them do just that (and the donkey sinks). The Fairy shows up, however, and Pinocchio resurfaces as his old self. We then see an enormous dorsal fin approaching Pinocchio with the Fairy telling him to swim faster. We then see most of the gargantuan shark (and its sharp teeth) as it surfaces and then swallows Pinocchio before diving beneath the surface (Pinocchio is not harmed).
  • Pinocchio witnesses a donkey, that's really another boy, die in front of him (nothing overly dramatic).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Pistol: Fired into the air by a circus master during a performance.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Nincompoop," "Splinter-head" and "Dimwit."
  • Pinocchio jumps up and down on the bed (upon first coming to life), and then climbs onto and jumps around on other furniture in the house. He then runs through the street, chasing various animals and banging trashcan lids together.
  • Pinocchio twice makes the "kiss my butt" gesture with his hand and face (thumb to the nose and wiggling the fingers), but does so in a playful manner.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • A bird suddenly and unexpectedly flies out of some brush (and might startle some kids).
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A heavy amount of ominous and suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • None.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • A female marionette (who appears as an adult human) shows cleavage in her low-cut dress.
  • We see a classic wooden female form on the bow of a ship and see the shape of the breasts, but they're mostly covered by carved hair.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Geppetto worries about his "boy," Pinocchio, when he's missing. Later, when he doesn't realize Pinocchio is present, he claims that he never wants to see Pinocchio again because he's so bad, but he quickly changes his tune when he sees him.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Lying.
  • Keeping one's promise.
  • Talking to and/or trusting strangers.
  • Pinocchio always getting into trouble and letting others persuade him to do things he knows he shouldn't be doing.
  • Pinocchio briefly stating that he'd be better off dead.
  • Animals used in circus acts.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Some slapstick style material has a 5-foot or so long log careening out of control through a village where it knocks several people down, causes some property damage and causes some food to splatter onto some local officers (which happens again later).
  • Pinocchio repeatedly tries to smash the Cricket with a mallet, but misses.
  • Pinocchio enters the Grand Puppet Theater and sees various marionettes in action (appearing as adult humans controlled by strings from above). There's some mock violence where they hit each other with rolling pins and night sticks. They then end up repeatedly tossing Pinocchio up into the air in celebration, and then accidentally let him land hard on the floor.
  • Two cloaked figures grab and drag Pinocchio off into the woods. We then see that they've strung him above a branch with his arms tied behind his back (we couldn't quite tell if they had a later seen noose around his neck, but the appearance is that they hanged him).
  • Pinocchio absentmindedly lets two large water containers fall to the street where they shatter.
  • Pinocchio discovers some boys playing with his hat and wrestling over it. He then joins the fray with some struggling, but a boy ends up throwing a book that hits another on the head, eventually causing him to stumble and fall to the street unconscious.
  • Pinocchio accidentally steps into a large animal trap that clamps down onto his leg (we don't see the impact but do see the trap on his leg with no blood or gore).
  • The Cricket barely avoids being hit by various people by accident (including by a mallet), but is then hit between two cymbals.
  • A man uses a riding crop to strike a donkey just out of meanness.
  • A ringmaster repeatedly hits a donkey (really a transformed Pinocchio) on the head with his top hat during a performance. We then hear but don't see him whip him and the donkey is apparently injured while jumping through a flaming hoop.



  • Reviewed December 26, 2002 / Posted December 26, 2002

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