Five for Families: Big-screen rodents teach bravery

Posted September 25, 2016

Here are five movies from various platforms that families may want to consider, as recommended by Because not all are appropriate for younger children, age recommendations are included.

Hollywood has shown that rodents are more than just animals with sharp teeth that scurry away in the light; they can be brave, kind and good examples that size does not matter. Here are five rodent-friendly films for families to consider.

Amazon Video: 'The Rescuers'

"The Rescuers," voiced by Bob Newhart and Eva Gabor, are two mice from the Rescue Aid Society that courageously seek to help a young orphan girl. The brave mouse Miss Bianca is joined by the shy Bernard and together they discover the girl has been kidnapped by an evil pawn shop owner. Parent Previews emphasized that the feel-good ending of the film promotes “the idea that little creatures can still do big things.” The website cautions that though the film is "softened by the picturesque background paintings" and "paced by the sentimental score," there are some potentially scary scenes. The website encourages parents to watch the film with their children. recommends the film for viewers ages 5 and older.

Amazon Video: 'The Secret of NIMH'

A widowed field mouse seeks the aid of former laboratory rats to save her ill son. Common Sense Media calls this Don Bluth film based on the Robert C. O'Brien children's book "an impressive example of cartoon art" that "is rich and warm, filled with exquisite detail and color." The website cautions that the tone of the film often shifts from cheerfulness to grimness, with a flashback of animals being tortured. recommends the film for viewers ages 7 and older.

iTunes: 'Stuart Little'

A young mouse is adopted into the Little family, but the family cat is less enthusiastic. The Dove Foundation says that throughout the course of several adventures the film teaches the importance of family, friendship and loyalty and that in the end “the Littles learn that everyone has a little bit of a ‘Stuart’ in them: tenacity, courage and spirit, which all play active roles in their lives.” recommends the film for viewers ages 7 and older.

Amazon Video: 'The Tale of Despereaux'

The Kingdom of Dor has fallen into darkness and gloom when soup is banned and rats are pronounced illegal. A courageous mouse, a banished rat and a servant girl become unlikely heroes in an effort to rescue a princess and bring light back into the kingdom. Plugged In notes that the film "illustrates the importance of extending grace in the face of misunderstanding." recommends the film for viewers ages 3 and older.

iTunes: 'Once Upon a Forest'

A field mouse, a mole and a hedgehog journey to find a cure for their badger friend after a toxic spill makes him sick. notes the message of the "well-crafted animated movie" is one that "emphasizes love, forgiveness, kindness, perseverance and cooperation." The website also says that the movie is environmentally concerned and emphasizes that problems can be solved by working together. recommends the film for viewers ages 5 and older.



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