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"ZOOM"
(2006) (Tim Allen, Courteney Cox) (PG)

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


QUICK TAKE:
Comedy/Action: A former superhero begrudgingly agrees to help train a bunch of kids with super powers so that they can save the world.
PLOT:
Thirty-some years ago, a group of young superheroes -- known as Team Zenith -- was created by General Larraby (RIP TORN) and scientist Dr. Grant (CHEVY CHASE) in a place known as Area 52. By subjecting them to gamma-13 radiation, the adults enhanced the kids' innate powers, but also turned one -- known as Concussion -- into a villain. Accordingly, his younger brother, known as Captain Zoom, had to vanquish his sibling, but then lost him, his team, and his powers in the process. Now all of these years later, Captain Zoom, a.k.a. Jack Shepard (TIM ALLEN), is a washed-up superhero whose services are once again needed.

It seems that Concussion, a.k.a. Connor Shepard (KEVIN ZEGERS) really wasn't killed, but rather sent adrift in some sort of dimensional rift. According to Dr. Grant's readings, the villain is now on his way back, so Grant and Larraby decide to create a new Team Zenith. Nerdy and bumbling psychologist Marsha Holloway (COURTENEY COX) will help pick out the kids, but they need the sort of expertise that only Jack can provide. Unfortunately, he's not interested, but an ultimatum of prison or $500,000 provides all of the motivation he needs.

Accordingly, he and Marsha choose the following kids for the program. There's Tucker Williams (SPENCER BRESLIN), a 12-year-old boy who can instantly make his body or any part of it as big as needed, while 6-year-old girlie-girl Cindy Collins (RYAN NEWMAN) possesses superhuman strength. Then there's 16-year-old telekinetic empath Summer Jones (KATE MARA), and Dylan West (MICHAEL CASSIDY), a sullen 17-year-old who can turn invisible and isn't any happier than Jack to be there.

With the days counting down to Concussion's arrival, Dr. Grant, Larraby and especially Marsha hope that Jack can overcome his sarcasm and then teach the kids what they'll need to know when they encounter the powerful villain.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
The kids as superhero angle might draw some (especially if they liked "Sky High" and/or "The Incredibles"), while those who are fans of anyone in the cast might also be interested in it.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
For brief rude humor, language and mild action.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • TIM ALLEN plays a former superhero who lost his powers and brother in the past, but has now been called on to teach the kids how to save the world. He begrudgingly does so (mainly for the pay) and is sarcastic about the work until he starts to like and care for the kids when he finally straightens up and gets the job done.
  • COURTENEY COX plays the nerdy and klutzy psychologist who wants to help the kids through building their self-esteem rather than artificial gamma rays.
  • CHEVY CHASE plays the nerdy scientist who's spent the past 30 years in Area 52 working for Larraby.
  • SPENCER BRESLIN plays a boy with the ability to make any part of himself bigger.
  • KATE MARA plays the telekinetic empath who assists in the effort and finds herself liking Dylan.
  • MICHAEL CASSIDY plays a sullen teen who's skeptical of the program but eventually gets with the team, especially as he falls for Summer.
  • RYAN NEWMAN plays a 6-year-old with superhuman strength who's otherwise a girlie-girl and dresses up like princesses and such, although she has a quick temper.
  • RIP TORN plays the general who runs the Zenith program and will do anything, including subjecting the kids to the gamma radiation, to stop Connor upon his return.
  • KEVIN ZEGERS plays Captain Zoom's brother who turned bad (due to radiation poisoning), was responsible for killing off the superhero's team, and now has returned for reasons unknown, but he knocks around various people, including his brother.
  • 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:
    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this action-based comedy that's been rated PG. Profanity consists of a few minor expletives, while various colorful phrases are also uttered. A few brief and benign sexually related comments are made, while a woman shows some cleavage in a dress (that a man likes and later refers to) and some tween and/or teen kids are seen in swimwear. A young couple briefly kisses and briefly find themselves lying face to face when one falls on the other (separate scenes).

    Comic-book style violence is present (characters hitting others or otherwise using their powers to knock them or throw objects around, resulting in some property damage), as is some slapstick style material. Some of that behavior might be enticing for some kids to try to imitate, while some of the action and a few moments of mostly benign peril could be unsettling for the very youngest of kids.

    Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, some crude humor is present, and there's brief tense family material in the form of a man remembering the brother he thinks he killed (when both were superheroes and one turned into a villain) and some kids wondering if their "gifts" are what caused their parents to dump them off.

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those concerned with bright flashes of light on the screen, there are some brief strobe effects in a training montage featuring a paintball exercise.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • None, but when General Larraby bursts in on an end of training party and is upset, Jack tells him to have a drink (we didn't see any alcohol use or presence).
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Crude humor includes the following:
  • During superhero tryouts, one kid says he's the gas giant and then squats down (clothed) to fart and then does so, quite loudly. Another kid then shows his talent of blowing a huge snot bubble from his nose. It then bursts and covers Dr. Grant's face with lots of green, wet goo.
  • About General Larraby always being grumpy, Jack tells him, "A big bowl of prunes might turn that frown upside down."
  • Trying to dissuade Cindy from sleeping in the same room with him (after having nightmares), Jack tells her, "I'm quite gassy."
  • A middle-aged technician has red welts all over his face from where paintballs previously hit him (not seen).
  • An artificial skunk sprays its pungent spray directly in Dr. Grant's face.
  • During the closing credits and outtakes, Dr. Grant sings "We like to poo in our pants" and we then see him and a few other cast members singing the same thing.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • We hear that General Larraby and others used gamma-13 radiation on Jack, his brother and others to strengthen their powers, not caring what it otherwise did to them.
  • We hear that Connor turned bad from the gamma radiation used on him and that led to him turning on his brother and the rest of the team in the past.
  • General Larraby refers to the kids as misfits, outcasts, and weirdoes.
  • A bully tries to steal Cindy's candy, so she grabs and throws him up into a tree.
  • Some cheerleaders make fun of Summer, calling her weird, so she uses her telekinetic powers to make pots of lunch food explode out and onto those other girls (they're unharmed, but covered in food).
  • When his teacher asks him to finish Newton's equation on the blackboard, Dylan sarcastically says he thinks Newton can finish his own equation.
  • Some kids make fun of Tucker on the diving board at a pool, calling him "lard butt" and joking that he's going to break the board. He then enlarges himself while jumping in, sending tons of water splashing on everyone.
  • Despite being paid handsomely for his work, Jack initially is quite sarcastic about every aspect of it and doesn't do much to train the kids.
  • Seeing Tucker and Cindy being excited about being superheroes (and then do some congratulatory hand moves, etc.), Jack sarcastically says they're definitely white.
  • The kids find Dr. Grant in an outdoor environment simulator. After Summer uses her telekinesis to close the door, they start pushing the buttons that cause him to be struck by lightning (he's partially charred as a result), subjected to a tornado's winds, hit by falling rocks and then has an artificial skunk spray its pungent spray directly in his face (all played for laughs).
  • About General Larraby's outburst, Jack tells him, "Boy, for a straight guy, you're dramatic."
  • Jack refers to Tucker (who's overweight) as "chubby."
  • General Larraby orders that the gamma radiation be used on the kids (to beef up their powers so that they can take on Connor).
  • Some viewers might not like the depiction or presence of supernatural powers (such as telekinesis).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" might also be unsettling or suspenseful to very young viewers, but probably to no one else, and most are played for action-based comedy.
  • General Larraby orders that the gamma radiation be used on the kids (to beef up their powers so that they can take on Connor). Younger kids may worry about that.
  • Jack briefly dangles from an elevator of sorts beneath a flying saucer as it takes off.
  • It's possible very young kids might find Connor's eventual arrival (via a fiery, glowing-red "storm") as unsettling or even scary (and once he's there, he has glowing red pupils).
  • Jack manages to save Cindy just just in time before a large net lands on her (her eyes are then closed, but she then comes to and is okay).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • The opening prologue shows a character aiming a crossbow of some sort
  • Marsha grabs Dr. Grant when he pulls a gun on Jack, but it's only of the tranquilizer variety. Nevertheless, the dart fires, ricochets off the ceiling and hits Jack in the chest, quickly rendering him unconscious.
  • We briefly see a handgun of some sort firing something into a tube in the lab, but we don't know why or what it is.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "I speak Greek, not geek," "Misfits," "Weirdoes," "Wow, you got old," "Howdy-do-do," "You're so weird," "Freak," "Lard butt," "That's creepy," "Do you see dead people?" "That is getting so old," "Washed up loser," "Don't be a jerk," "No way" (followed by another person responding, "Way"), "Dude," "Give me a break," "Are you bipolar?" "A big bowl of prunes might turn that frown upside down," "You're out of your mind," "Are you crazy?" "It's really awesome," "Chill out a little bit," "Sucks being in here," "Sweet," "Where do you go when you fuzz out like that?" "Bird brain," "What the hell is going on here/What the hell's going on?" "Boy, for a straight guy, you're dramatic," "Sleeping's for wimps," "What are you dressed as, super-poodle?" "Superheroes don't wine," "Chubby," "Mental chick," "Bozo," "Man, that is so hot," "She blows," "A living hell," "What is this, attack of the preschoolers?" "You fumbling, bumbling bozo," "You twerp," "Nice suit, lizard-boy," "You kind of suck at this, don't you?" "Shut up" and "Those little lunatics."
  • Some of the action and stunts may be enticing for some kids to try to imitate.
  • Jack has a tattoo on his arm.
  • Jack uses his super-speedy finger to blend items in a blender.
  • During superhero tryouts, one kid eats a balled up piece of paper and then shoots spitballs out like a machine gun (no one is hurt, although they land on man's face).
  • Jack lets out a long and loud belch, saying (about the taste) that he doesn't remember eating that.
  • Jack purposefully lets cream of wheat run out of his mouth while eating it.
  • To try to wake up Jack, Cindy pokes him repeatedly in the face and then starts pulling on his skin.
  • Cindy briefly bounces up and down on some furniture.
  • During the closing credits and outtakes, Dr. Grant sings "We like to poo in our pants" and we then see him and a few other cast members singing the same thing.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A bit of dramatic and action-oriented music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 3 hells and 1 use each of "God" and "My God."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Marsha shows cleavage in a sexy dress that Jack later asks about (when she says she still has the original Capt. Zoom comic books, he twice asks if she still has that dress).
  • We briefly see some tween or young teenage girls in standard bikinis at a pool where we also see various shirtless guys.
  • About the rumor of gamma radiation being used on the kids, Jack sarcastically tells them they might want to slip into some lead underwear, adding that they'll want to protect their "privates." Later, General Larraby says they'll douse the kids with enough gamma-13 radiation to sterilize a trailer park.
  • During training, Dylan ends up accidentally landing atop Summer and both smile about their awkward position (lying face to face on the floor).
  • About Summer using her telekinesis to lift a guard off the floor, Dylan says, "Man, that is so hot."
  • There's a brief kiss between Dylan and Summer.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • We hear that Jack lost both his powers and his brother (who turned bad and he thinks died) in the past.
  • Cindy says she feels different from other kids and wonders if that's why her parents sent her to this place.
  • We see Jack remembering his brother during a montage scene (he just has a pensive look on his face).
  • We hear that all of the kids were dumped off at the headquarters by parents, with Summer saying hers apparently couldn't handle her powers anymore.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Kids feeling like outsiders or that they're different from others (in a bad way).
  • Gamma radiation.
  • VIOLENCE
  • The opening prologue shows illustrated comic book stills that are moved around to simulate action as we see one character knocking another back, one throwing a punch, one aiming a crossbow of some sort and such (all accentuated with related sound effects).
  • Marsha slips and falls several times in different scenes and falls over a desk in another (all done as slapstick).
  • Marsha grabs Dr. Grant when he pulls a gun on Jack, but it's only of the tranquilizer variety. Nevertheless, the dart fires, ricochets off the ceiling and hits Jack in the chest, quickly rendering him unconscious.
  • A bully tries to steal Cindy's candy, so she grabs and throws him up into a tree.
  • Some cheerleaders make fun of Summer, calling her weird, so she uses her telekinetic powers to make pots of lunch food explode out and onto those other girls (they're unharmed, but covered in food).
  • Some kids make fun of Tucker on the diving board at a pool, calling him "lard butt" and joking that he's going to break the board. He then enlarges himself while jumping in, sending tons of water splashing on everyone.
  • To show her abilities during tryouts, Cindy throws a heavy desk into a wall. Later, Summer causes a drinking glass to float before sending it crashing into a wall.
  • Mad at Jack for something he's said, Cindy throws an enormous weight through the control room glass, causing everyone inside there to scramble for safety.
  • Tucker expands inside a small room, pressing Jack up against the glass with his bare flesh (and Jack disgustedly comments on wondering about what part of the body that's against him).
  • A flying saucer (piloted by Tucker) ends up breaking off the top of a light pole and then lands on something in a parking lot.
  • To sleep closer to Jack in his bed, Cindy drags a couch across the floor, tearing it from its wall bolts and cutting tracks in the floor from the weight.
  • While mad, Cindy pushes Dr. Grant (in a chair) all of the way across the facility until he crashes into some mannequins at the far end.
  • Two guards collide as they try to tackle Dylan who eludes them.
  • In passing, Tucker and Cindy accidentally knock over Dr. Grant.
  • The kids find Dr. Grant in an outdoor environment simulator. After Summer uses her telekinesis to close the door, they start pushing the buttons that cause him to be struck by lightning (he's partially charred as a result), subjected to a tornado's winds, hit by falling rocks and then has an artificial skunk spray its pungent spray directly in his face (all played for laughs).
  • Dr. Grant is bumped and accidentally spills hot coffee down the front of his clothing.
  • Marsha uses her super breath to blow some guards backwards, Dylan bashes two together, and Tucker expands to knock two against opposing walls.
  • Cindy uses her might to smash a cell door open, but knocks Jack back with it and he lands hard on the floor.
  • Connor knocks Jack backwards through the air (landing hard on the ground) several times with energy concussions (so he doesn't actually physically touch him). He then does the same to various men working for General Larraby, blasting them and the ground beneath them.
  • While running at superhuman speeds, Jack accidentally trips, falls, tumbles and slides across the desert floor (seen from a distance and he's okay).
  • Dylan punches Connor, Summer uses her mind to send rocks at him, and Tucker expands and knocks Connor backwards through the air, followed by Cindy hitting him with a metal pole of some sort that sends him flying through the air like a baseball. Jack then races around him at super speed, reversing the evil effects the gamma radiation had on him (as Connor tries to hit him with more concussion blasts, but misses).



  • Reviewed August 11, 2006 / Posted August 11, 2006

    Other new and recent reviews include:

    [American Made] [Battle of the Sexes] [Flatliners] [A Question of Faith] [Stronger]

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