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Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

MPAA Rating: PG-Rating (MPAA) for brief mild language.

Reviewed by: Patty Moliterno

Better than Average
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Kids, Family, Teens, Adults
Animation, Kids, Family
1 hr. 21 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
September 18, 2009 (wide—3,000+ theaters)
DVD: January 5, 2010
Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation click photos to ENLARGE Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation

WEATHER—What are some weather extremes on Earth? Answer

Faith in the Bible

Kid Explorers
Adventures in the rainforest! Learn about the Creator of the universe by exploring His marvelous creation. Fun for the whole family with games, activities, stories, answers to children’s questions, color pages, and more! One of the Web’s first and most popular Christian Web sites for children. Nonprofit, evangelical, nondenominational.
Featuring: Voices of Anna Faris, Neil Patrick Harris, Bill Hader, Bruce Campbell, Lauren Graham, Andy Samberg, James Caan, Benjamin Bratt, Bobb'e J. Thompson, Mr. T, Will Forte, Laraine Newman, Mona Marshall, Al Roker, Sherry Lynn, Marsha Clark, Mickie McGowan
Director: Phil Lord
Chris Miller
Producer: Sony Pictures Animation, Chris Juen, Pam Marsden, Andrea Miloro
Distributor: Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation

Sequel to this movie: “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2” (2013)

“Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” is loosely based on the children’s book written in 1978 by Judi Barrett. The movie begins with a young Flint Lockwood (voice of Bill Hader) presenting his new invention to his class. Of course, everyone can use shoes that don’t tie. Flint demonstrates his spray-on shoes, and immediately one classmate begins to make fun of him because you can’t take the shoes off. Flint goes home humiliated and defeated. His mother, who believes in him, comes into his room and gives him an “official lab coat” and a speech about how she believes in him.

The movie then takes us to present day with a grown up Flint. He still lives in the town of Swallow Falls with his dad, Tim (James Caan). He still is trying to invent something. His inventions have been one failure after another. His mother has died 10 years earlier, and now he has no one who believes in him. To make things worse, nobody wants to buy what the town supplies—sardines. The residents are forced to eat sardines for breakfast. lunch, and dinner. Flint wants to save his town with his new invention—the machine which will turn water into food—if he can only get it to work. While testing the machine, he destroys the new “theme park”—Sardine World. Flint, also, ruins the career of the new reporter sent to cover the unveiling of Sardine World, Sam Sparks (Anna Faris).

While Flint hides from the town, Sam finds him. As they talk, cheeseburgers begin to rain from the sky. Flint finally has an invention that works. He becomes the new town hero, until the weather takes a turn for the worse.

There are very few objectionable moments in this film. In fact, nothing in this film bothered me, partly because they are so dwarfed by the awesomeness of the film process itself; however, I will list some of the items that could be a problem for some.

Violence: Flint is made fun of throughout the movie. There is a policeman (Earl played by Mr. T.) in the film that punches, slaps and uses excessive force. The monkey throws balls of feces instead of ice cream. Flint throws ice cream snowballs hard; he also gets kicked in the face. When giant food begins to fall from the sky, looting starts, and a few people are shown stealing televisions from a store. Giant gummy bears are shown on the wing of a plane, creating havoc (similar to a scene from “The Twilight Zone”). The giant food begins to attack the humans trying to turn off the food machine.

Nudity: Baby Brent was the poster child for the sardine industry. All grown up, Baby Brent continues to act as the town celebrity and removes his clothes at a ribbon cutting. He is shown with just a diaper on. He runs around the town with just the diaper on. Keep in mind, this is a cartoon. I just mention it to make everyone aware.

Sex: Very clean film. Flint tries to kiss Sam. Sam tries to kiss Flint. At the end of the movie, they finally kiss. Statues fashioned out of jello show a topless Venus de Milo (brief scene and barely noticeable). Earl flexes his buttocks.

Language: At one point someone says “what the” and then stops. The Mayor says something about being stuck in this h---hole of a town.

Diners are shown with glasses of wine.

A comment about “manna from heaven” is made when food begins to come from the sky.

As I watched this movie, I felt that there were many lessons. One was to be yourself. Sam hides who she really is because she wants to be liked and popular. Flint tries to win the town’s approval and, instead of shutting off the machine, allows it to continue making food, because he wants to be liked. He learns that doing the right thing is better than approval of others. Another lesson is perseverance. Flint is persistent in his attempts at being an inventor.

There is also a lesson about getting too much of anything. Having everything you want is not always a good thing. As you watch this movie, you watch the mayor gain weight. You also see the townspeople become very demanding. Too much of a good thing is still too much.

Finally, there was the lesson of love and acceptance. Flint always had the support and love of his mother, but he desperately wanted to know his father loved him. At the end of the movie, he finds that his father has always loved him; his dad just didn’t know how to express that. As I watched that scene, I remembered someone once telling me (as an adult) that every time she called home, her mom would say she loved and missed her, but her dad always asked her about her car. That was his way of saying, I love and care about you. My dad did a little wink. Just as we want to be loved by our parent’s, they need us to understand and accept their limitations. This movie modeled both of those aspects of the parent-child relationship.

Faith is modeled in this movie. Hebrews 11:1 says “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commanded for.” Flint’s mother had faith in him, even though she died before she witnessed his greatest accomplishments. Flint continued to press on because of the faith his mother showed him. I certainly hope I can model the faith in salvation in Jesus Christ to my children in such a way, that even after I am gone they will remember that faith and believe themselves.

I recommend this movie. Today, I viewed it with my husband and children, ranging in age from 19 to 4. We all enjoyed this movie in 3D. I have been reluctant to go to a 3-D movie because of my son who is almost 5. However, he enjoyed this movie and didn’t remove his glasses once. My 6 year old turned to me during the credits and said, “I really liked this movie”. I was thinking the same thing.

Violence: Minor / Profanity: Minor / Sex/Nudity: Minor

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive—This was a very good movie and I enjoyed it. It was cute and funny. There were no four-letter words or blasphemies, no nudity, and low violence. The speed of the plot was to suit young childrens' attention spans, but it had a good plot, which suits adults. Spoilers: A main character made a comment about how his son was doing with his food invention, that it was unnatural (he was causing food to rain from the sky), and I thought that this would be a stab against Christianity, but nothing more was added. And this character actually turned out to be right. Something went wrong with the machine due to overuse. Also, on a positive note, which was in an earlier review on this site, another main character mentions “This is truly manna from Heaven” (or something like that), which is an awesome Bible reference (any reference that lifts up the Bible is awesome). The only violence was at the end when one of the characters started beating up some man-sized chickens. I thought that the end scene with the main characters inside the machine with all the giant food might be a bit scary for extremely young children. But for most people it’s not that scary.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
G.M., age 22 (USA)
Positive—OK, I’ll admit it, I’m a 3D nut, and I think the new digital 3D is the best ever. I went to see this movie for the 3D, hoping it would be a pretty good movie, and it exceeded my expectations. Well-made, funny, and great 3D effects.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
Howard, age 64 (USA)
Positive—This movie was great! I couldn’t believe it at first. I decided to take my friend to see this thinking, “Eh why not go see a movie, this one looks decent.” Little did I know that I would be laughing throughout the entire movie. This movie was clean for the most part. The things that the reviewer spoke about were the things I noticed as well. There were some very mild jokes and, be forewarned, a lot of CORNY puns. Anyways, like I said this movie was great. Jokes for children and adults a like. I was very impressed due to the fact that Hollywood has been producing so called “children movies” that have been somewhat objectionable. Good Job Hollywood…you’re taking a step in the right direction!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Alex, age 19 (USA)
Positive—I’ve certainly been anticipating this movie since I first saw the previews for it, though I wasn’t sure how good a movie it would truly be until my family and I went to see it. I thought the premise for water-converted to food and the situations that could arise from that would make for a great animated movie. I came out of the theatre today more than satiated with an appetite to see it again when I have the time and money.

Flint has a great desire to help the people in his town with his inventions, though his inventions, like ratbirds, a remote-controlled television, spray-on shoes, and hair-unbalder, are something of a walking, flapping, uncontrollable disaster for him that leaves him feeling discouraged. That’s why he’s thrilled when his latest invention of a machine that can convert the town’s weather to rain down any kind of food he or anyone else wants is successful and places him in high respect and approval from the people and the mayor. After all, in a town where only sardines were on the menu, who wouldn’t be happy to have a scientist like Flint around for breakfast, lunch, and dinner?

However, there is much more that Flint wants than recognition and appreciation for his invention. For Flint, he knows in his heart that it isn’t from the people or the mayor, or even the world, that he wants to be loved but from his father Tim, who owns the local sardine bait and tackle shop. As a child, Flint never had the same relationship with Tim as with his mom who understood his need to be an inventor. Flint doesn’t feel as though his father truly understands him but still wants his support and love and wants to share his adventures with him. Of course, Tim really does love his son but doesn’t know how to express that to him, even when he tries to convince Flint that his machine is beginning to cause problems.

Flint desires the kind of relationship that law enforcement officer Earl has with his son Cal of unconditional love but tries to get his father to love him through his inventions and talents. It is only when things look bleakest that Tim comes through to encourage his son and remind him of his love for Flint. Flint isn’t the only one who wants to be accepted for who he is.

When meterologist Sam Sparks comes to report on the showers of food, he discovers during their afternoon of jello bouncing that she has just as strong a desire to be accepted for her interests and love for science. He continually reminds her that she’s beautiful just the way she is and should not allow public opinion to control her identity, something even Flint is reminded of when he puts his own need for recognition before his responsibilities to his family, friends, and to the town.

Not only are there great themes about responsibility, love, and friendship, the movie also paints a great picture of the consequences of convenience and altering the natural balance of Life. Because the change in the weather from water to food comes quickly to the people, Flint doesn’t take into account that too much of a good thing isn’t always the best thing. The portions become bigger each time it rains, making characters like the Mayor, fat and demanding for more and more. In the beginning, Flint means for his machine to help the people for the better.

Later on, he is motivated by his own needs instead of remembering whose needs he created his machine for originally. It is only when he realizes that the world could end because of his mistakes that he faces the monsterous food hurricane head on to save everyone, even at the possible expense of his own life. There were only mild thematic elements of action and mayhem you might expect from food with a mind of its own. As the food mutates, it begins to chase Flint when he and his friends are going after the machine.

Earl is seen in tight shorts and the town’s commercial icon Brent in a diaper on several occasions but if you remember that they are cartoons, this only adds to the humor of the movie. Language-wise, it’s clean because if characters are expressing their surprise, they say, “What the what?!?!”

There is so much humor and heart to this story that I forgot I was watching an animated movie and felt that these characters were as real as you and I. The main characters, supporting characters, and even background extras were equal to one another. The 3-D effect only made the movie more enjoyable for me and my family and the many other families who were watching with us. Because the story had been well-developed, the CGI only further enhanced the hilarity and adventure one sees in an animated movie like this!

If there was only one regret that I have, it is that there was no smell-o-vision. Some of the food looks quite realistic and delicious, too!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
Caroline, age 20 (USA)
Positive—While I don’t completely object to Christian parents allowing their children to see this movie, please be aware that the previews at this time is defintley not something they should see. I have young grandchildren that would have nightmares from the previews. This is a family film, therefore the previews should reflect the same.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
Brenda, age 57 (USA)
Positive—I loved this movie! And my 19-year-old daughter did, too. It is now one of my all time favorite movies. The effects are great, but the comedy is better, and people of all ages will like it.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
Faith, age 29 (USA)
Positive—I like this movie, it’s Real D, and very cool indeed. The only problem is even somehow lose interest after a while. Mutant food items and game like adventures somehow not able to generate the Disney’s magic moments. I could see children walking around—often playing inside the theatre than looking to the screen (there were very few people when I saw the film). Bit stretchy story for them perhaps.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Cyril Thomas, age 29 (UK)
Positive—I watched this movie for the 2nd time last night with our family (the first being in a local theater). I like this movie so much, that I am planning on purchasing a copy for our family. With so many of the animated family movies that get released containing suggestive sexual innuendo’s, crude humor and inappropriate material, I thought this one really stood out.

This was one of the first movies in quite awhile that had me laughing outright for most of it.

There were some things I could see that people could find objectionable…like baby Brent still trying to use his “baby in the diapers” gig to get attention, the lead character getting a little “too into” his newfound snowball war abilities, the monkey throwing its poo at people, and the over the top scenes that would be painful in real life… like when the news reporter accidentally drops her feet off the end of a peer and implants them into the main characters eyes.

In the end, though, much of the slapstick situations like this reminded me a lot of Bugs Bunny and the type of cartoons I grew up watching, most of which featured way over the top violence that I think people appreciate for a humorous element and understand that such things would in the end not only seriously hurt someone but kill them in real life… but in the world of cartoons they just slightly irritate someone temporarily. I think most cartoons utilize this type of humor to one degree or another, and it is pretty commonplace.

I also know that monkeys throw their poo at people at the local zoos, so I suppose if someone wanted to not watch the movie for that, then they should probably not go to the zoo as well. For some odd and very strange reason, monkeys seem to do this in real life, so I really didn’t see it as being a show-stopper for the movie as far as a moral issue.

I really liked the reference to “manna from heaven” at one point in the movie and felt like this, overall, was a great movie for our family to watch. Especially in a day when it seems to be getting increasingly difficult to find positive wholesome things to watch.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 5
Mike K., age 41 (USA)
Positive—I found this movie very funny! Though there are some nudity when Baby Brent strips down to his undies most of the time, and the officer in one scene sticks in his buttocks while wearing short shorts.

There is a lot of gluttony in here, such as the mayor (who is also a bad influence on Flint) who gains 100 pounds from all the food. There are good morals in here, such as supporting Flint, and people helping and over coming their faults.

Some of the parts are cheesy when Flint and Samantha try to kiss several times and when the father speaks through a transmitter, but the father over comes his faults. I however found this movie hilarious because of all the funny and some stupid scenes. Though for all the scenes I repeated, this movie should be watched by people 11 and up, under that age needs adult supervision.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Anna, age 18 (USA)
Neutral—Flint. He’s the guy almost every kid has wanted to be. None of his inventions might have actually worked correctly but still, he has homemade computers with cool voice effects and a tower-top lab only accessible through an air powered elevator/chute with a hand-scanning front lock… (okay, so maybe the scanner is only a curtain, but hey, who’s counting?) He’s cool, and like so many other movies Hollywood gives us for the family, he doesn’t fit in anywhere because he’s… well, different, e.g., he’s nerdy, spastic, and always dreaming too big. Well, you know the film makers are gonna have fun with this one. Coolness aside, I thought this film was decent.

There were a few light messages of “too much of a good thing,” love, etc. but if you’re not looking for it, you might wind up walking out of the theater only gaining some thrills and laughs. The pacing is quite fast; almost dizzying at times, which makes it hard for some of the good-meaning dialogue to truly hit home. But eh, I suppose the “what do you expect to keep kids interested nowadays?” line would answer that comment. My only qualms were “baby Brent” (basically “a big guy in a cloth diaper”) and that: ***Minor Spoiler*** Near the climax, we discover that the food machine has “transformed” into a gigantic organic mass of… very organic-looking food that takes on some subliminally suggestive (if not otherwise gross-looking) shapes. ***End Spoiler***

Overall, compared to a lot of the other films out there, this film does score some points by being a reasonably clean family movie (action flick?) with some enjoyable pop culture and “nerdy” in-jokes tossed in. I enjoyed my time watching it, as did my teen-aged brother who was with me. The numerous families around me seemed to enjoy it as well. But about second viewing? …Thanks, but I think I’ll skip to the main course.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Faith Mitchell, age 18 (USA)
Negative—My wife and I went to preview this movie for our 16 and 13 year old girls. We came out of the movie with the mutual opinion that they would not be seeing this movie. And we both felt that they would not like this movie at all. We read the reviews here before going to see this movie and were misled by the opinions given. The parts of the movie that were mentioned by the reviewer, were significantly offensive to my wife and I. The entire Baby Brent character, who was a grown man walking around in a diaper for most of the scenes he was in, was downright embarrassing. I didn’t want to see him walking around like that let alone while watching this with my wife or even worse, my kids. It was not needed in the story and could have been done so much better.

Then in the scene mentioned where the police officer, clinched his behind. Here we are with 3d glasses on, and the officer’s behind is taking up HALF the screen. And then he did that?! Not appropriate for a kids movie! And then the clincher. When Flint, Sam and Brent were in the mass around the machine trying to turn it off, having plucked, headless chickens chasing the characters was unbelievable. This would give our girls nightmares. And then to have one of the chicken’s “eat” Brent and then what happens after that?! That did NOT need to be in the movie. I want to warn other Christians who are considering this movie, that they preview it before allowing your children to go. As parents, we typically preview movies for our children, and we are so glad we did. I do have to say, the 3D in the movie was well done. The quality of the movie was excellent. It’s just the poor decisions that were made by Hollywood that reinforces why we will continue to preview movies like this in the future.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Steve, age 38 (USA)
Negative—This film was just, just not okay. It replaced God with the thought of food. God is not a food, got it? I was appalled by this horrible film.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 2
Jimmay, age 65 (USA)
Comments from young people
Positive—EXTREMELY clean movie and extremely funny! The language was very little and none of the violence was at all too frightening, except there were a few disturbed children at the “man-eating chicken” scene and the “gummy bear attack” scene. But, overall, it was a great movie. I think they put at least three funny things in every five minutes of the movie and made all of them work. My 21-year-old sister was laughing very hard! This is definitely appropriate for all ages! I recommend it to anyone! Although I will warn you… make sure you watch this movie close to dinner.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
Tim, age 12 (USA)
Positive—I was really amazed how good this was. I went with other kids my age (16) and at the end of it we all said “I was NOT expecting that at all!” It was very well. I could barely catch “hell” in it. But I did hear it. But I think the fantasy of the movie and the morals of the movie way outnumber the “negative” things ten fold. As a teenager, I love this movie, and it is up there in my favorites.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 5
Joe, age 16 (USA)
Positive—This movie was very funny and entertaining. Overall, it was just good clean (and delicious) fun. It may make you hungry though!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Sheena H., age 11 (USA)
Neutral—Well, what can I say? “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” did not follow the book, except that food came falling out of the sky. The movie was cute and clean, but there was one use of the word Hell. I believe the movie was entertaining for a first time view, but as for watching it a second time… Not so funny. I am sure younger kids will love it though. By the way, I have just one minor warning: Don`t watch this movie if you are on a diet or trying to maintain your appetite. You will be hungry afterwards!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 3½
Emily, age 11 (USA)
Positive—I thought it was a really cute movie. A little weird when they keep on trying to kiss each other, and a few bad words were exclaimed, but that’s pretty much it. Great movie overall!!!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Rachel, age 11 (USA)
Positive—This is a very good movie. It is a must see. This is the best film of the year, nothing offensive bedsides 2 bad words.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 5
Joseph, age 12 (USA)
Positive—I thought this movie was EXTREMELY funny! Some things in the movie were not needed, but overall it was great! Your kids will love it! I thought this movie would be terrible, because the comercial was lame. I thought that this would be a very cheesey movie. I was wrong. IT WAS GREAT!!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
Gloria, age 13 (USA)
Positive—This was a great movie! I was not expecting such a great film. It had a good message, about being who you are even if you are not attractive, cool, etc. Even when made fun of, the main character went on to accomplish great things for the town. He also learned from his mistakes, another good life lesson. I recommend this film for ages five and up (even for teens).
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
Rain, age 14 (USA)
Positive—This was a very good movie. I saw it at a birthday party it was so cool with the glasses. I think young kids would like it. It’s funny it has no bad scenes. I don’t think it has bad words in it. It is not offensive. But there is a scene in which a Police Officer slaps and punches someone. It is a good movie. I think ages 5-100 would like it. It’s funny when the kids yell, NO SCHOOL!!!… now that’s funny. At the end Miranda Cosgrove sings It’s Raining Sunshine it is a good song I love it!!!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 5
Alexa, age 8 (USA)
Positive—I saw this movie almost when it first came out. It was a good movie. There was nothing bad about it or offensive to God the father, God the son, or the Holy Spirirt. It didn’t really have anything to do with Christ. It was a clean film, suitable for kids of all ages, and for adults. This movie was humorous, and had a very good plot. I saw this movie in 3-D. It was very excellent. I love this movie, and wish to see it again.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 5
Kimberley, age 11 (USA)
Positive—I absolutely loved this movie. And that is something I almost never say. This year, I have been disappointed with most movies that came out this year like “Terminator Salvation,” “Night at the Museum 2” (which was a disaster), “9,” “2012” and “Harry Potter 6.” But this movie is one of the best that came out this year. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is one of those movies that’s hilarious, and touching. The whole ending with Flint and his dad is pretty good. And, oh yeah, the casting is really good too. Is this movie offensive? No. Their wasn’t one thing that was offensive in this movie except that it could be interpreted as violent when the chicken eats baby brent but its done playfully so its not that bad. Does this movie have to do anything related to Christ. Well, no.

I highly disagree with Jimmay who wrote on here saying that this movie replaced God with food. That’s not the idea here. The idea is about an inventor who is made fun of a lot and invents a machine so food can come out of the sky. Now is that related with God?

But anyway, I highly recommend this funny and clean film. This movie goes right to number 6 as the best of 09' following behind “Star Trek,” “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” “Up” (which I wrote a review on here putting a negative review on it, but I rewatched it and loved it), “Coraline” (a dark movie but a treat to older kids), and of course the great “Where the Wild Things Are.” But anyway, enjoy this great film and enjoy these other movies I put on here.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Langston, age 12 (USA)
Neutral—Bizarre! That is what this movie is. It started off okay, then weird, and at the end it was strange. See it if you like, but I do not recommend this movie. It was a waste of time, just like “Wall-E”!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
Ian, age 16 (USA)
Positive—When I went to see “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” I, at first, thought it was kinda lame. But I ended up liking it. They show gluttony in a bad light [which is good], there is no profanity, and the the movie is entertaining. there are a couple of times when Brent strips of his clothes and there are a couple of cheesy parts [get it, cheesy] but it’s a fun movie!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
Jessica, age 16 (USA)
Positive—…a hilarious movie. My family rented it a day ago and already we have watched it two times! The only thing I felt slightly uncomfortable watching was when the “Baby Brent” walked in with his two girlfriends and when he takes his clothes off and wears just a diaper. But, like I said before, this movie is hilarious to watch and I could watch it over and over again!!!…
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
Madison, age 13 (USA)
Negative—“This is how to NOT make movies!” Those were my first words to my film-major brother after we saw “Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs.” Don’t get me wrong, the movie started off really good. But slowly it started getting weirder and weirder. At first it was just dumb cartoon violence, slightly gross stuff, and lame jokes. But it soon escalated to obscene, just not appropriate things that were supposed to be funny. Well, I’ll just try to present the facts without being too cynical.

Positive Points—Flint’s mom is supportive, encouraging and understanding. She doesn’t let him give up on his dreams, even though everyone laughs at him. There are other parts in to movie where characters discuss things like, don’t be afraid to be you, don’t hide your true self. Flint apologizes for what he’s done and has made a plan to stop the machine. Flint (in the beginning of the movie) is this determined kid who is creative and wants to use his talents to help people. Later, when his machine goes haywire, Flint puts himself in a trash can along with other “junk” (his other inventions). His dad encourages him not to give up. One father character asks Flint for a favor because he wants to show his son how much he loves him. This character truly cares about his son, rescues him countless times, and obviously treasures him greatly. But when this dad said to his son, “I love you” his son just looked irritated and said, “I know Dad, you say that everyday!”.

Negative Stuff—A character ripped off his clothes and was left standing with all of his fat hanging out over a diaper, several times. The characters rarely used substitute cuss words. One character makes a comment about the food raining down being “manna from heaven”. The movie makes light of some serious situations (like one kid being in a “food coma”) and they try to make some scenes “epic” in a silly way. There is this one character that runs around in these tiny little shorts (a guy). That’s not totally scandalous or anything, but in one scene half of the screen is taken up by his backside, which looks like he has a major wedgie. Keep in mind that there is A LOT of cartoon violence. Pretty much every scene. Flint asks out this girl and takes her (alone) to this creepy place. They try to kiss in this super drawn-out scene. In other scenes, Flint repeatedly tries to kiss her.

There is a lot of gross stuff about food. People just shoving (literally and worse) their faces with food, swallowing it whole. Flint, used to being laughed at and an outcast, really gets carried away with being famous and sought after. He chooses to do what the crowd wants rather than what is right. He seeks to please others so as to stay popular, liked and comfortable. He ignores his dad and friend (who were there for him when he was an outcast) when they try to warn him. Flint damages tons of other peoples property, and there is just a lot of destructiveness. In the first major damage scene, he just runs away and feels sorry for himself, instead of apologizing or fixing anything.

WRAPPING IT UP “Everything is permissible, but not everything is beneficial…” (1 Cor. 6:12)—The overall feeling I was left with after this movie was weird. The movie itself wasn’t exactly, totally bad. But it obviously wasn’t that great either. So my question is, what is it? If you want to devote (and ultimately waste) 2½ hours of your life to a cartoon movie with a weak message, please be my guest! If you don’t have a problem with it, fine, but in my opinion it isn’t worth it.

My advice would be to, instead of getting your family together for a “family time” movie, get outside and go to the beach, visit a relative, play board games, pray together. Be available and spend quality time! Just do something where you can, through your actions, show your family how much you love them. I know in my own life that it means way more to me when my dad takes me fishing instead of taking me to a movie.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3
Steve, age 15 (USA)
Positive—This is a fun, funny and [not to mention] a very colorful film! It’s funny, but some parts of the movie are just lame. Like, for example, Brent [Flint’s foe] takes of his clothes and poses like he did as a baby or when Brent decides that he should stay in his baked chicken outfit [his whole body,except his head, is in a roasted chicken]. But the movie shows us that too much isn’t good for us [gluttony]. But, other than the negative, this is a fun family film!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
Luna, age 16 (USA)