Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Night at the Museum

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild action, language and brief rude humor.
Profanity:Brief crude language
Nudity/Sex:None
Alcohol/Drugs:None
Violence/Scariness:Comic peril and violence
Diversity Issues:Diverse characters learn to get along
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007

Larry (Ben Stiller) needs a job fast. He has always dreamed of making it big, but none of his schemes have worked and as his ex-wife points out, their son Nick needs some stability. After an employment counselor (Stiller’s real-life mother, Anne Meara) has only one suggestion for him, he takes it — night security guard at a natural history museum. Attendance is down and they’ve had to cut the budget. The three senior night-time guards are being let go. They toss him a tattered set of instructions and warn him not to “let anything in — or out.”


Larry plays around with the museum’s public address system and falls asleep. The next thing he knows, he’s being chased by a tyrannosaurus rex skeleton, being asked for gum by an enormous Easter Island head statue (voice of “Everyone Loves Raymond’s” Brad Garrett), and being shot at by tiny natives with tiny poison darts. The Union and Confederate soldiers are shooting at each other and the cowboys are fighting with the Roman centurions. President Theodore Roosevelt and Attila the Hun are charging through the halls. Then there is a mastodon and some mischievous monkeys and some lions…


Larry has to find a way to keep peace, earn his son’s trust and respect, and finally stick with something all the way.


It’s a better than average CGI-fest, more often silly than funny. But it makes some good points about courage, self-respect, and the importance of learning about history. And Stiller and co-stars Robin Williams (as Roosevelt), Mizuo Peck (as Lewis and Clark guide Sacajawea), Ricky Gervias as the museum director, Paul Rudd as Nick’s soon-to-be stepfather, and especially Steve Coogan as a Roman soldier hold their own against the special effects and a terrific trio of veterans, Dick van Dyke, Mickey Rooney, and Bill Cobb, as the outgoing guards show the young folks they still have a couple of things to learn. Be sure to stay through the credits to see them dance.


Parents should know that the movie has a good deal of comic peril, mayhem, and violence. Though much of it is cartoony and intended to be funny, a character is chased by a dinosaur, shot at, and punched. Characters use brief crude language and there is some potty humor. A strength of the movie is its portrayal of diverse characters learning to empathize with and support each other.


Families who see this movie should talk about why it was so important for Larry to feel that Nick was proud of him. They may also want to talk about some of the tensions and conflicts that can arise in families and what it means to have a “fallback position.” And they should go to some museums. Even if the exhibits do not actually come alive, they are a lot of fun and have wonderful activities for families. They should also learn about Sacajawea, Theodore Roosevelt, Easter Island, and Attila the Hun.


Families who enjoy this film will also enjoy the books and movie versions of Jumanji, The Indian in the Cupboard, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, and Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (more mature material).



  • Your Name

    When you say dirverse does that mean there are homosexual references?

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/ Nell Minow

    I do not recall any references to gay characters in the film. You should know, however, that I strongly support the positive portrayal of gay characters, strongly object to any bigoted or homophobic references and do my best to point out both in my reviews whenever I see them.

Previous Posts

What's Up With My Family? -- App Helps Middle Schoolers Navigate Life
Middle School Confidential™ 3: What’s Up with My Family? is a new IOS app, the next installment of the series for tweens and teens. The third edition continues the story of Jack, Jen, Chris, Abby, Mateo, and Michelle—a tight-knit group of friends in middle school—who are realizing that growi

posted 3:59:49pm Aug. 20, 2014 | read full post »

The Simpsons Binge Watch: Every Episode Plus the Movie
Get your food delivery menus ready.  Unplug your phone.  All 552 Simpsons episodes will be broadcast in order, starting tomorrow. [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qq4w74r8HKY#t=27[/youtube] The new season starts September 28.

posted 3:59:35pm Aug. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Bo Svenson
Bo Svenson is an actor, writer, director, judo champion, and, as I was lucky enough to find out, an enthralling guy to talk to, turning an interview into a wide-ranging conversation. Svenson was

posted 3:59:35pm Aug. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Tribute: Don Pardo
Don Pardo's face was not familiar.  But his voice was instantly recognizable.  We mourn the loss of one of the great announcers in broadcast history, who died on Monday at age 96. The cast of "Saturday Night Live," where he served as announcer from the beginning, celebrated his 90th birthday.

posted 12:44:03pm Aug. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Gayle Forman of "If I Stay"
Gayle Forman is the author of If I Stay, the source for this week's movie starring Chloë Grace Moretz as Mia, a talented young cellist in a coma following a car accident.  As she hovers between life and death, she remembers incidents from her life with her family and with her rock musician boyfrie

posted 8:00:16am Aug. 19, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.