Story

Skipper (voiced by Tom McGrath), Kowalski (Chris Miller), Rico (Conrad Vernon) and Private (Christopher Knights) are penguin spies. One day when they are kidnapped by an evil scientist, they discover that their old zoo mate Dave the Octopus has been kidnapping penguins around the world and is planning to turn them all into monsters. Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private must work together with The North Wind, an undercover organisation, to save the penguin population and defeat Dave.

Themes

Loss of a parent; separation from family

Violence

Penguins of Madagascar contains some violence. For example:

  • Leopard seals try to eat the penguins
  • The penguins blow up a ship with the seals still on it.
  • Guards point guns at the penguins but the penguins knock the guards out with some sort of gas
  • Dave the Octopus is violent towards the penguins. He captures them, puts them in cages and uses a giant machine to turn them into monsters.
  • Dave and the penguins fight each other throughout the film.
  • The North Wind members use guns and explosions to attack Dave
  • Private is shot by Dave’s special gun and it appears that he is dead, but later we discover that he is okay.

Content that may disturb children

Under 5
In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in Penguins of Madagascar that could scare or disturb children under the age of five. For example:

  • The penguins fall off the edge of a cliff, but they are not hurt
  • Dave the Octopus is an evil villain and may be scary for young children
  • The penguins dangerously jump out of flying planes without a parachute
  • Dave’s lair shows hundreds of penguins trapped in cages – this may disturb young children

From 5-8
Children in this age group may also be scared or disturbed by the above mentioned scenes.

From 8-13
Children in this age group are unlikely to be disturbed by anything in this movie.

Over 13
Nothing of concern

Sexual references

Nothing of concern

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

There is some use of substances in this movie. For example:

  • government agents are shown drinking champagne.

Nudity and sexual activity

Penguins of Madagascar contains some sexual activity. For example:

  • Kowalski the penguin falls in love with Eva the owl. They flirt with each other a little and at the end they kiss.

Product placement

The film is part of the Madagascar franchise, and associated merchandise is marketed to children. 

Coarse language

Nothing of concern

Ideas to discuss with your children

Penguins of Madagascar, which is a spin-off from the Madagascar movies, is a fun action comedy. It is ideal for children over the age of seven. Because of the violent and scary elements of the film, it is not recommended for children under five and parental guidance is recommended for the five to seven age group.

The main messages from this movie are:

  • ‘Looks don’t matter. It is what you do that counts.’
  • Never leave a colleague behind.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • bravery
  • loyalty.

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children the real-life consequences of using violence to solve conflicts.