What The Critics Say About "The Rugrats Movie"

Critics the world over have their say regarding the latest cinematic sensation, The Rugrats Movie. Many critics gave the film average ratings, though some praised the film, while others trashed it. In the movie ads for the film, only the most positive criiticisms are used. But on this site, I'll present all sides of opinion. As for whether or not you want to see the movie, you be the judge.


1. All quotes are copyrighted by the publishers and media companies they write for.

2. " # " indicates that the review was translated from a foreign language. Translations are by me, based on translations provided by Systran and Altavista. I apologise in advance for any mistranslations. The foreign language version is on top, while the English version is on the bottom. Languages seen here are French, Spanish, German, Portuguese & Italian.I won't be able to bring you any reviews in languages other than these, as the translators don't have any other translating capabilities other than the languages above.

3. Some French reviews provided by Allocine.

Positive Reviews:

These critics liked the movie so much, that they recommend it to everyone.

The Age (Melbourne, Victoria, Australia)(Steve Samuelson)

Move over Teletubbies, on yer bike Wiggles, those animated intellectuals wearing nappies are hitting the big screen for the school holidays. Members of the youngest ratpack Hollywood has seen - Tommy, Chuckie, Angelica and twins Phil and Lil - have transferred their blossoming TV careers to the big screen in the hope they can wear designer nappies to the Oscars. Okay, I made that last bit up.


Big-screen treatment for plug-ugly infants who make the 'terrible twos' look like Little Lord Fauntleroy out to please.

# Berliner Morgenpost

Doch ob die Welle des Erfolgs auch nach Europa schwappt, bleibt mehr als fraglich. Hatten hier die vorangegangenen Generationen über den frech-dreisten Bugs Bunny gelacht, die genialen Peanuts geliebt oder die Simpsons kultisch verehrt, bietet man den Jüngsten nun quäkende Wickelkinder, die aussehen, als seien die dazugehörigen Zeichnungen am Kindergartentisch entstanden.

Whether the wave of success extends to Europe, it remains more than questionable. Here, where preceding generations had laughed over the impudent, bold Bugs Bunny,admired the ingenious Peanuts or the Simpsons, one now offers squeaking children to the youngest ones, who look, as if the pertinent drawings at the kindergarten desk developed.

# Bild

Brüllender Kinospaß für klein und groß.

A roaring film that's fun for young and old.

Boston Globe 3 stars (Jay Carr)

TV's animated Rugrats show us what drool power is all about in their big screen debut  "The Rugrats Movie." The feature film is a diverting, if not overly enchanting, production that's been carefully devised to appeal to young kids and their parents.

Boston Phoenix

The animation is top-notch, and though the film boasts some MTV-pulsed vignettes -- including a hilarious maternity-ward rock video -- plus the little bambinos' propensity for scatological excess, The Rugrats Movie is solid on family values and a reasonably good time for the whole mini-van clan.

Calgary Sun (Tyler McLeod)

The Rugrats Movie is a lot like the Rugrats TV Show.The drawings are still crude, the voices are fairly standard, their storylines mostly predictable.

Yet it's hard to resist their charm.

The Rugrats are wise, too. They know the "facts of lice."

And parents, don't worry -- this kiddie flick is hardly a chore. There are enough gags directed at adults to stave off boredom.

Carlton Television (London) / "Popcorn"  3 stars (out of 5) (Ceri Thomas)

As action-heroes go, Tommy Pickles is nearly perfect. He's smart, brave, adventurous, loyal and very, very determined. In fact, there's just one teeny-weeny thing stopping him topping the Indiana Jones' League table . . . the age requirement. You see, Tommy's only one-year-old.

Shamelessly bolting together bits of Peter And The Wolf, Raiders Of The Lost Ark and The Wizard Of Oz, the action then chunters towards happy-ending land with a blend of raucous slapstick and gentle, slow-burn humour that more adult fare would often do well to emulate.

It may be slightly stretched (even at only 80 minutes) and have a couple of painful song'n'dance numbers slotted in for no good reason, but The Rugrats movie is darn difficult to dislike. Real thought has been put into the characters - both baby and grown-up - and while what it says about friendship, family and responsibility isn't terribly original, it's nonetheless touching. I hate to say it, but this really is one for all the family.

CBC Newsworld (Colin McLean) [From an ad for the film]

What a delightful film; looks like it could be the big children's movie hit of the Christmas season.

CFCF ch.12 (CTV), Montreal (Mose Persico) [From an ad for the film]

A fun family adventure for all ages; you and the children will love it.

Chicago Tribune (Gary Dretszka)

(See below for Gene Siskel's review. -- SM)

"Rugrats" is ready to burst out of its cable-TV playpen and waddle into the big kids' backyard, which, in [Hollywood], can only mean the movie studio down the street.

As far as the toddler's family is concerned, it's about time.

"The Rugrats Movie" not only is a blessed event for Didi and Stu Pickles... but it also represents something of a breakthrough for surrogate parents Klasky-Csupo studios and Nickelodeon Movies.

The Cincinnati Enquirer (Margaret A. McGurk)

[The Rugrats Movie] is a happy blend of smart-aleck humor and wacky adventure.

The secret ingredient in The Rugrats Movie is a spot-on sense of humor that neatly sifts the silly from the stupid. The jokes in this film clearly come from people who have paid close attention to babies in real life and distilled their moods, needs, imagination and bodily functions into good, honest laughs.

Co-directors Norton Virgien and Igor Kovalyov, writers David N. Weiss and J. David Stem, plus a brace of producers and technical talents, deserve credit for this charming diversion. They also get a pat on the back for a way-cool soundtrack put together by former Devo leader Mark Mothersbaugh, and featuring catchy numbers from an all-star list of rock, pop and rap performers.

# Cinemagazine

Sin duda una de las series infantiles de animacion más vistas por los norteamericanos es "Rugrats". Vista por más 23 millones de espectadores cada semana, su popularidad es tan grande que la serie ya ha generado una tira cómica, varias cintas de vídeo con los mejores fragmentos, una función teatral de gran éxito y millones de dólares anuales en merchandasing. Y como no podía ser menos, ahora nos llega la película. Pero a diferencia de la televisión, el cine permite a estos populares personajes vivir una aventura digna de Indiana Jones, al cual homenajean al principio y al final de la película, lo que permite también desarrollar más el caracter de los protagonistas y las relaciones que existen entre ellos.

Lo que sucede es que mientras que la popularidad de la serie se transmitió de los niños a los padres, la película no es sólo para niños, sino todo lo contrario, en ciertos momentos la pueden disfrutar más los padres que los hijos. Los mocosos son los protagonistas, pero siempre bajo un punto de vista adulto y contemporáneo, ya que toca temas como la lealtad a la familia, el valor y la amistad. Los "Rugrats" no tienen ese caústico y salvaje humor que caracteriza a series como "Los Simpson", ya que van dirigidas a un público muy diferente -¿o no tanto?-, pero el mensaje que acaba ofreciendo es positivo y políticamente correcto. Con todo, la película se ve con agrado, siempre que uno tenga un espíritu joven y vitalista. Por ello la banda sonora está tiene canciones popualres grupos musicales del momento, como No Doubt o Lisa Loeb. Pero el momento cumbre de la película es aquel en el que unos bebés cantan "This World Is Something New To Me", una canción en la línea de "We are the World" que intepretan gente como Beck, Jakob Dylan, Patti Smith, Iggy Pop, Lisa Loeb, Laurie Anderson o Lenny Kravitz. Lástima que sólo se pueda oir en la versión original, y ésta no se estrene en nuestro país. Eso sí, la película sí se estrena en catalán.

Without a doubt one of the most-watched children's animated series is "Rugrats". Seen by 23 million viewers every week, its popularity is so great, that it generated a comic strip, several video tapes with the best segments, a successful live show and millions of dollars annually in merchandisng. And if that's not enough, here comes the film. But unlike the TV show, the film allows these popular characters to live a adventure worthy of  Indiana Jones, to who they impersonate in the beginning and at the end of the film, which also allows to develop the characters and the relations that exist among them.

What happens is that even though the TV series is popular among kids, the film is not only for children, but at certain moments, their parents also enjoy it. The little kids are the protagonists, but always in a contemporary, adult point of view, since it touches subjects like loyalty to the family, values and friendship. "Rugrats" does not have that caustic and savage humor that characterizes shows like "The Simpsons", since they go directed to a very different group, - or not as much -, but the message that it ends up offering is positive and politically correct. Yet, the film has affability, whenever one has a young and vitalised spirit. For that reason the sound track features popular musical artists, like No Doubt or Lisa Loeb. But the summit of the film is that in which babies sing "This World Is Something New To Me", a song along the lines of "We are the World" that features people like Beck, Jakob Dylan, Patti Smith, Iggy Pop, Lisa Loeb, Laurie Anderson and Lenny Kravitz. Pity that it can only be heard in the original version, which is not released in our country. And yes, the film is also released in Catalan. (Catalan, kind of a mixture of Spanish and French, is a language spoken in the northern part of Spain. -- SM)

# Cinescape 3 stars (David Calvo)

Moi, j'ai pas un super feeling avec les Razmoket. Cette série culte est en fait beaucoup trop ciblée jeune âge (4-10 ans) pour m'intéresser réellement.

Bien dans la mode, cette adaptation télé-cinéma est, en fait, une grande réussite. Si on baille au début, si l'on a peine à entrer dans les délires de ces bébés plein d'idées mais aussi très ancrés dans le réel, c'est pour mieux se rendre compte que, au finish, l'intérêt est ailleurs. Dans le scénario, véritable leçon d'écriture, avec une mise en place des personnages comme on en a rarement vue; une musique et des chansons inspirées (écrites par Mark Mothersbaugh, ancien leader de Devo, qui réussit un tour de force en rassemblant, pour une séquence de nurserie, pas mal d'étoiles du rock - Beck, Laurie Anderson, Lenny Kravitz, Gordon Gano, Patty Smith, Iggy Pop...) ; des péripéties bien étudiées... des mouvements de caméras hallucinants ; une cohérence du graphisme exemplaire ; quelques perles de cynisme, et un constat optimiste sur l'état d'une société américaine déboussolée par sa candeur.

Bref, c'est du très bon, et la fin du film, un duel entre un loup géant et le gentil chien Hubert suivie de l'apparition d'un pseudo-enchanteur; alors, c'est à vous de voir. Il est très politiquement correct et s'adresse vraiment aux tout-petits. Décidément, ce film est une belle réussite cinématographique. Et si les bébés vous écoeurent, revoyez PETER, LE CHAT SANS QUEUE, dessin animé suédois des années 80, et vous devinerez d'où la série tient toutes ses bonnes idées graphiques.

Me, I'm not too thrilled with Rugrats. This series is much too much targeted to children (4-10 years) to really interest me.

However, this film adaptation is, in fact, a great success. If one gets bored with the beginning, if one hardly believes in these babies full with ideas but very anchored in reality, it is better realised that you'll like how it finishes. In the scenario, great writing, with an assortment of new characters inspiring music & songs (written by Mark Mothersbaugh, former leader of Devo, which makes a success of a "tour de force" while gathering, for a nursery sequence, an array of pop music stars - Beck, Laurie Anderson, Lenny Kravitz, Gordon Gano, Patty Smith, Iggy Pop...); well written adventures...  incredible camera movements; a coherence of exemplary graphics; some pearls of cynicism, and a frank, optimistic look on the state of American society.

In short, it is the very good one, and the end of film, a duel between a giant wolf and the gentle Spike followed; you have to see to believe it. It is very politically correct and is really addressed to the toddlers... you will say that, definitely, this film is a beautiful cinematographic success. And if the babies nauseate you, see "Peter No-Tail", a 1980s Swedish animated film, and you will guess from where the series holds all its good graphic ideas.

# Cinestudio

A sette anni dalla loro nascita negli stessi studi che hanno dato vita ai Simpson, arrivano sul grande schermo i Rugrats, i più famosi personaggi televisivi per l'infanzia mandati in onda dall'americana Nickelodeon diciannove volte alla settimana. Nel film Stu e Didi Pickles sono storditi dalla nascita del loro figlio più piccolo, Dylan, mentre Tommy con l'aiuto dei suoi piccoli amici decide di rispedire il neonato al reparto maternità dell'ospedale. Nel tentativo di giungere a destinazione, i ragazzini si perdono in una grande foresta popolata da animali e misteriosi maghi. Primo film d'animazione che ha per tema la vita di una famiglia dei nostri giorni, "Rugrats", che come nella serie televisiva adotta il punto di vistainfantile dei protagonisti, mescola i temi del coraggio, dell'amicizia e dei legami di sangue con citazioni cinematografiche e una rappresentazione ironica e pungente della vita quotidiana.

Seven years ago since their birth in the same studio that have given life to The Simpsons, coming to the big screen are the Rugrats, the most famous television babies, seen on Nickelodeon in the US nineteen times a week. In the film, Stu and Didi Pickles give birth to their smaller son, Dylan, while Tommy, with the aid of its small friends decides to return the baby to the hospital's maternity ward. In the attempt to reach destination, the children beg forgiveness in a giant forest populated with animals and a mysterious wizard. The first animated film about the life of today's family, "Rugrats", as in the TV series, adopts the point of view of the Rugrats, stirs the topics of courage, friendship and blood ties with cinematographic citations and the ironic and piercing representation of everyday life.

# La Cinquieme

L'arrivée d'un nouveau né bouleverse le quotidien de la famille Cornichon. Voici donc porté à l'écran le dessin animé le plus populaire des Etats-Unis, dont les personnages font désormais partie du patrimoine culturel américain. Personnages monstrueux... humour pipi-caca... vous êtes prévenus: c'est pas Disney!

The arrival of a newborn upsets the daily life of the Pickles family. Now coming to the screens are the most popular animated program in the US, whose characters  inherited the American culture. Monstrous characters... pee-pee ca-ca humor... you are warned: this isn't Disney!

# Clarín (Buenos Aires, Argentina) (Pablo O. Scholz)

Desde que la Reina de Blancanieves se transformó en una bruja mala, la diferencia entre una película de animación y otra con actores suele ser la libertad de acción que tienen los personajes dibujados.

Aventuras en pañales es tal vez uno de los mejores ejemplos llevados al mundo de la practicidad, porque las fantasías de Tommy, Carlitos, Angélica y los mellizos Phil y Lil se vuelven realidad en la pantalla, y los más chiquitos, a quienes está definitivamente destinada la película, se zambullen en ese mundo fantástico como si las aventuras las vivieran ellos.

Para aquellos niños que estén familiarizados con los personajes, la película ofrece la posibilidad de disfrutarlos en un contexto poco habitual. La historia comienza a transcurrir, como siempre, en la casa, para luego pegar el salto hasta el bosque. Pero los chicos -la película es recomendable para niños de nivel preescolar- que nunca hayan visto Rugrats simpatizarán enseguida con ellos. La razón es suficientemente sencilla: lo que les pasa, cómo se relacionan entre sí y con sus padres, sus peleas por los juguetes están tomadas de la vida misma. Cualquier padre sonreirá al sentir alguna que otra identificación con lo que se ve en la colorida pantalla.

Ese es en la televisión y lo sigue siendo en el cine el gran mérito de Aventuras en pañales, la identificación. Rápida, además. Sin alardes de animación -pero con movimientos continuos, fluidos, y una muy buena caracterización-, la película está más cerca de los chicos que ninguna otra en cartelera. Y ése es otro de sus muchos atractivos: promover la imaginación en el mundo infantil. Si los padres ven Aventuras en pañales con sus hijos en la tele, ya lo saben. Si no, conviene que lo vayan sabiendo.

Ever since Queen Snow White transformed into a wicked witch, the difference between an animated film and a live action one is usually the freedom of action of the characters.

Rugrats is perhaps one of the best examples taken to the world of practicality, because the fantasy of Tommy, Chuckie, Angelica and the twins Phil and Lil become reality on screen, and the little ones, to those who the film is definitively destined, are plunged into that  fantastic world as if they lived the adventures.

For those children who are familiarized with the characters, the film offers the possibility of enjoying them with little habitual context. The story starts,  like always, in the house, soon to jump into the forest. But the kids  -- the film is recommended for pre-schoolers -- who never have seen  Rugrats will get along immediately with them. The reason is sufficiently simple: what it happens to them, how they are related to each other and to their parents,  their fights with the toys are taken from real life. Any parent will smile when he identifies with himself on the big screen.

This identification is Rugrats' greatest merit, which can be found on TV and at the movies.  Also, faster. Without the animation - but with continuous movements, fluidity, and very good characterization -, the film is more for the little theater-goers.  And that one is another one of those things that makes it attractive:  to promote the imagination in the infantile world. If the parents see Rugrats with their children on TV, they already know it. If not, it agrees that they are knowing it.

# El Colombiano (Medellin, Colombia)

Rugrats cuenta las aventuras de un grupo de bebés, en medio de un mundo controlado por los adultos y donde la imaginación y el ingenio son las únicas armas para hacerse sentir en un medio manejado por los más grandes.

Como serie, Rugrats se parece a los Simpson por su ironía. Los Simpson son el esperpento de la sociedad norteamericana,  Rugrats ponen en tela de juicio todo el mundo adulto. Estos niños intentan hacer lo que mismo que los mayores en cuanto a aventuras pero a otra escala. Pues bien, la cadena de televisión Nickelodeon ha sacado de sus estudios la historia de estos bebés en pañales y la ha llevado al cine bajo el nombre "The Rugrats Movie". La premisa de la película esta basada en uno de los capítulos de la serie.

Rugrats es una película infantil con toda la problemática de los adultos y los niños. Esta nueva aventura cuenta con otro niño: Dil, hermano de Tommy, quien se involucra en todas las necedades de estos despiadados niños, que sólo buscan seguir siendo el centro de atención y afecto de sus padres.

"The Rugrats Movie" recounts the adventures of a group of babies, in the middle of a world controlled by the adults and where the imagination and the talent are to be felt in means greatly handled.

Like the series, Rugrats is similar to The Simpsons by its irony. The Simpsons are the absurdity of the North American society, Rugrats places a judgemental fabric in every adult. These children try to make adventures out of ordinary situations. And now, Nickelodeon takes the Rugrats to the cinema under the name "The Rugrats Movie". The premise of the film is similar to one of the chapters of the series.

"The Rugrats Movie" is an infantile film with all problems of the adults and the children. This new adventure has another boy: Dil, Tommy's brother, that becomes jumbled in all the nonsenses of these ruthless children, whom they only look for to continue being the center of attention and affection of his parents.

# El Correo Español (Bilbao, Spain)

Tras el éxito cosechado en la televisión norteamericana, llega ahora la versión cinematográfica de unos destrozones dibujos animados, protagonizados por un grupo dechiquillos capaces de poner a prueba la paciencia del santo Job. Malévola peripecia familiar, que muy bien puede ser la otra cara de "El rey y yo".

After the success harvested on North American television, the film version arrives now from these cartoons, carried out by a group of kids able to put the patience of Saint Job to the test. Malevolent, familiar eventful journey, that can very well be the other face of "The King And I".

The Courier / The Evening Chronicle (Kent & East Sussex, England) (John Harrison)

Parents beware: nappy power rules and the tottering tots are taking over.  

Anarchy rules as the lovable little 'uns embark on the adventure of a lifetime in a Great American Outdoors populated by wild beasts, manic monkeys, raging torrents and – oh yes – the insufferable Anjelica, the sassy older girl hell bent on retrieving her lost doll.

All your lovable vertically-challenged characters from the TV series successfully make the crossover to the big screen: Tommy, who gets a new brother Dylan, the twins and Chuckie, the redhead who, like, every three-year-old, is genetically incapable of keeping his shoelaces done up. As well as the diaper humour, there is enough wit and gentle satire in this original infant's view of the unreasonableness – and downright stupidity – of grown-ups to keep Mum and Dad amused. A surefire hit for the Easter holidays.

Cox News Service (Charles Passy)

(From a report on Nickelodeon in general:)

...with the release of "The Rugrats Movie", [Nickelodeon] makes its big cinematic splash. There have been 2 previous Nickelodeon films -- "Harriet The Spy" in 1996 and "Good Burger" in 1997. But they don't compare with "Rugrats".

The Economist

It's your basic adventure story -- but there isn't anything Disney about the dialogue.

This includes Angelica informing Tommy that when the new baby comes, it's curtains for him as far as parental attention goes; an R&B tune, sung in the hospital's neo-natal unit, about the desire to return to the womb; and Tommy's father and his brother, a successful banker, engaging in unremitting sibling rivalry. The "Rugrats" world isn't idelised, by anyone's standards, bit it is familiar, if disturbingly so.

Soon there will be no avoiding the fact that, whether parents like it or not, children don't live on Sesame Street -- or even Mr. Rogers' Neighbourhood -- anymore.

Edmonton Journal 3 stars

Funnier than expected, this is a winning little film that deals with sibling rivalry and how to overcome it.

Empire 3 stars (out of 5) (Neil Jeffries)

Those familiar with The Rugrats cartoon from Saturday morning TV will know its episodes are short, snappy purveyors of superb baby/toddler's eye-views of a grown-up world. So expansion of the witty format into an 80-minute plot might raise an eyebrow. After all, aren't rugrat attention spans as short as, well, Rugrats?

Young 'uns will delight in the constant stream of nappy gags while for adults there's a number of film references - it opens like Baz Luhrmann's Romeo And Juliet, shifts into a superb Raiders Of The Lost Ark pastiche, and tips its hat to The Fugitive and Bambi - but it's unlikely this will draw in unaccompanied adult fans of the Saturday experience.

Nonetheless, it's well drawn and the chuckles come thick and fast. And any film which uses a bunch of rock stars (including Lenny Kravitz, Patti Smith and Iggy Pop) to sing a maternity ward musical set piece has got to be worth a look.

Entertainment Tonight (Website) 3 stars (Chris Chang, Cinemania ®)

If you're looking for arena-size entertainment for the diaper-clad masses, look no further than The Rugrats Movie. The film remains faithful to its TV fan base by filling the big screen with a time-proven formula of gooey cartoon mayhem and complacent domestic morality.

...One of many musical numbers...ends with a well-choreographed multiple fountain of tinkle that results in -- get this -- a urine rainbow! Infantile or not, that's entertainment. (But you may want to take your kids to the bathroom before the movie starts.)

Entertainment Weekly B (Lisa Schwarzbaum)

...The creative team...dispatches overeducated parenthood AND post-permissive  childhood with wry, observant wit.

Evening Gazette (Marlborough, North Yorkshire, England)

(See below for negative review)

The Teletubbies are taking the world by storm, Thomas The Tank Engine has become a major star on several continents - and now it looks as if more children's favourites are about to become global stars too.

Cuddly little cartoon kiddies with minds like adults have made their first foray into the world of films ... and THE RUGRATS MOVIE has gone down a storm in America, their country of origin.

Already established as a staple of BBC1's Saturday morning children's show Live And Kicking, hopes are high for box-office success in this country.

Being an American film, there are `life lessons' to be learned here for the Rugrats on the loose.  Tommy realises how much he loves his little brother Dylan, who Tommy and his pals are trying to return to the `hop-sickle' (hospital) from whence he came.

The large star-studded turn-out for the British premiere in London recently confirmed the film's broad appeal.

Soccer star turned TV presenter Gary Lineker enjoyed it. "I could identify with the film as my sons have definitely behaved like Rugrats, from time to time," he said.

Baby Spice Emma Bunton reckoned a lot of girls would identify with Angelica. "She's got real Girl Power," joked Emma. "She's quite pushy and doesn't take any nonsense from the boys around her!"

Evening Standard (London) 1 star, out of 3 (Alexander Walker)

Though ostensibly for those with tiny-tots attention spans, this animated feature based on the TV show is even more a grown-up treat. It's witty, sophisticated and, in its depiction of very young children as a wild bunch with bad attitude and faces like over-boiled potatoes, it's hard to fault.  Producers Klasky and Csupo prove you can be innovative without being infantile.

# Expresso (Lisbon, Portugal)

Uma popularíssima série infantil da televisão chega ao grande ecrã. A diferença está numa maior atenção ao argumento, necessária para poder captar a atenção do seu público infantil (e dos adultos que o acompanhem), dando-lhe um ritmo movimentado. As «citações» às aventuras de Indiana Jones são frequentes, tanto nas peripécias dos Rugrats pela floresta, como nos seus jogos e assaltos ao frigorífico. A popularidade da série apoia-se em grande parte no traço dos personagens que fogem aos estereótipos das fábricas Disney e Spielberg, e que se aproxima do mais adulto «Os Simpsons». De salientar que, ao contrário de muitas obras de animação vindas dos referidos estúdios, «Rugrats – O Filme» mistura bem o humor e o suspense e injecta na história o «perigo» necessário para torná-la atraente para as crianças, à maneira dos clássicos de Disney dos anos 30 e 40. Um bom espectáculo para o Verão das crianças, em cópia dobrada em português.

A most popular children's TV series comes to the big screen.. The difference is in big attention argument, necessary to be able to pick-up the attention of kids (and the adults that follow it), giving a moving rhythm. The "citations" to the adventures of Indiana Jones are frequent, as is the perspectives of  the Rugrats in the forest, and its games and assaults are frigid. The popularity of the series is supported to a large extent by people who run away to the stereotypes of the Disney and Spielberg films, and that it is come close to the most adult series, "The Simpsons". To point out that, in contrast to many other animation releases from related studios, "The Rugrats Movie" mixes the mood and the suspense and injects in history, as well as the "danger" necessary to become attractive to children, similar to the Disney classics 30 to 40 years ago. A good Children's summer spectacular, dubbed in Portuguese.
Film Advisory Board (Elayne Blythe, President) [From an ad for the film]

If you've never seen the Rugrats, prepare to fall in love!

Great fun for the entire family! An Award Winner!

Left: FAB's "Award Winner" logo, given only to films that they find very suitable for the entire family.
(Logo is from the 11/22/98 New York Times ad for The Rugrats Movie; ® & ©1998 Film Advisory Board, Inc.)

# Film 3 stars

Der erfolgreichste Nicht-Disney Zeichentrickfilm ist vollgestopft mit abgebrühten Dialogen, Zitaten aus der jüngsten Filmgeschichte und unterhält mit viel Tempo und Witz vor allem ein junges Publikum.

The most successful non-Disney animated film is filled with snappy dialogs, take-offs from recent films and above all, fast jokes.

Filmink Magazine 3 stars (out of 5)

Vibrant, smart and cheerily unsentimental.

# Filmtabs (Günter H. Jekubzik)

Ihr richtig großes Abenteuer ist wieder aus der Perspektive der Windeloberkante flott erzählt. Der Zeichenspaß ist recht phantasiereich und auch - im Vergleich zu vielen Disneys - durchgehend kindgerecht. Für Folgeschäden im Geldbeutel durch übermäßige Merchandise-Nachfrage haftet der Kritiker nicht.

Their correctly large adventure is again told from the perspective of the baby, quicking giving it an upper-edge. The fun animation is daydream-calibrated and also compared with many Disney films. The critic is not responsible for any damages to the purse caused by merchandise.

# Hoy (Quito, Ecuador)

Un filme, para olvidarse de los problemas y vivir una aventura en pañales.

A film to forget the problems and to live an adventure in diapers.

# Jornal da Tarde (São Paulo, Brasil) 3 stars (Paula Anselmo)

Baseado em um dos desenhos de maior sucesso do canal infantil Nickelodeon, Rugrats – O Filme – Os Anjinhos chega ao cinemas brasileiros para engrossar o leque de opções de produções em cartaz para as crianças, que tem como carro-chefe o Tarzan da Disney.

O longa-metragem animado dirigido por Norton Virgien e Igor Kovalyov tem roteiro bem elaborado que se identifica com a linguagem infantil e consegue trasmitir aos pequenos boas lições, ao narrar a aventura que movimenta a rotina de qualquer família: a chegada de um novo bebê.

Feito pelos mesmos criadores de Os Simpsons (Arlene Klasky e Gabor Csupo), o desenho sobre uma turminha de crianças entre 1 e 2 anos que se comunica sem que os adultos entendam está há nove anos no ar nos EUA e é transmitido no Brasil pelo Nickelodeon e pelo SBT , no programa Bom Dia & Cia, entre 9h e 10h.  

Não é preciso ter assistido ao desenho para entender o filme, apesar de os episódios televisivos darem continuidade ao longa, anunciando a gravidez de Didi Pickles, mãe de Tommy, o líder da turminha.

Rugrats – O Filme – Os Anjinhos explora as noções de responsabilidade com o irmão mais novo, de companherismo e ajuda as criança a compreender que os pais precisam se dedicar ao bebê novo que requer cuidados. Cai como uma luva para as família que lidam com o ciúme do filho mais velho.

Based in one of the top animated successes of the Nickelodeon children's channel, The Rugrats Movie arrives at Brazilian theaters to thicken the choice of options of children's films, in light of the release of Disney's Tarzan.

This livened-up film, directed by Norton Virgien and Igor Kovalyov, has an elaborate script that identifies with the infantile language and attempts to transmit to the little kids, when telling the adventure that puts into motion the routine of any family: the birth of a new baby.

Made by the same creators of The Simpsons (Arlene Klasky and Gabor Csupo), the animated program about children between 1 and 2 years that talk without the adults understanding, was seen for nine years in air in US and is seen in Brazil on Nickelodeon and SBT, between 9AM and 10AM.

It is not necessary watch the show in order to understand the film, although a TV episode starts off the continuity, announcing the pregnancy of Didi Pickles, mother of Tommy, the leader of the group.

The Rugrats Movie explores the lessons of responsibility and companionship of a new brother, and helps the child to understand that the parents need to dedicate themselves to the new baby who requires care. It's also important for the family to deal with the jealousy of the oldest son.

# Jornal Do Brasil (São Paulo, Brasil) (Ricardo Largman)

Ao dar à luz seu segundo filho, a artista americana Arlene Klasky fez três descobertas: que ser mãe não é necessariamente padecer no paraíso, que as noites são mais longas do que parecem e que, bem, ser mãe pode ser algo lucrativo. Inspirada no dia-a-dia de suas crianças, ela criou um desenho animado para a TV americana protagonizado por bebês. Logo a série conquistou o público infantil e – por retratar com honestidade e bom humor as dificuldades dos pais na arte de educar os filhos – também os adultos. Assim, passar de programa nº 1 da televisão para a tela grande era mera questão de tempo. Sete temporadas, para ser mais preciso. Mas valeu esperar. Mesmo sem toda aquela superprodução e opulência dos desenhos da Disney, Rugrats, o filme: os anjinhos (Rugrats movie) é bastante divertido. E, às vezes, até emocionante. A simplicidade dos traços repete-se nos diálogos dos (bem) baixinhos, mostrando como eles vêem o mundo complicado e cheio de aventuras dos mais grandes. Neste episódio, a ação gira em torno do nascimento de um irmãozinho, que provoca todo tipo de reações, nas crianças e nos adultos: alegria, choro, ciúme, raiva, falta de paciência – exatamente nesta ordem. Quem, como a Sra. Klasky, já passou noites em claro sabe bem do que se está falando.

After giving birth to her second son, American artist Arlene Klasky made three discoveries: being mother is not necessarily paradise, that the nights are longer than what it seems and that, well, to be mother can be something lucrative. Inspired by the day-by-day activities of their children, they created an animated TV series featuring babies. Soon the series conquered young viewers and - for portraying, with honesty and good feelings, the difficulties of parenthood - the adults, as well. Thus, it was a matter of time before TV's # 1 show comes to the big screen. Seven seasons, to be exact. But it was worth the wait. Exactly without all that superproduction and opulence of the Disney films, The Rugrats Movie is easily amusing, and at times, emotive. The simplicity of the animation mixes well with the dialogues of the little ones, showing as they see the complicated and full world as great adventures. In this film, the funny action around a birth of a new baby brother, that it provokes all type of reactions, in the children and the adults: joy, sadness, jealousy, anger, impatience - accurately in this order. Who, as Mrs. Klasky, already spent nights knowing well of what is being said.

# Le Journal De Montréal
Unfortunately, I know very little French, as this is a French-language paper (I could've translated it now, but unfortunately, I lost the original, and the paper has no online archive). However, as you can tell by the cover (left) and the review's tone, Le Journal gave the film a favorable review. -- SM

(Left: "Rugrats Come To Town", From Le Journal's film section, 11/20/98. © 1998 Le Journal De Montréal / Viacom.)

Kids News Network (JoAnna Levenglick) [From an ad for the film]

A contemporary animation hit. 'The Rugrats Movie' is a fun film for the entire family.

# Kinonews

Von wegen kleine Babies sind niedlich und liegen den ganzen Tag im Bett herum. Wer das denkt, kennt die Rugrats nicht. Die fünfköpfige Schnullerbande ist das Power-Team der Windelgeneration und stürmt jetzt das Kino mit Geschrei und Gebrüll.

"Die Rugrats", das ist ein schnullerstarker Kinospaß für groß und klein. Und für alle, die einmal wissen wollen, wie kleine Plärrer die Welt und uns Erwachsene wirklich sehen.

Small babies are nice and lie about all day long in bed. Who thinks, the Rugrats don't know. The pacifier gang is the power team of the diaper generation and is now storming the cinema.

"Rugrats", is a fun, strong film pacifier for large and small. And for all, which want to know once, how small the crying babies see the world and us real adults.

# Komsomolskaya Pravda (Moscow, Russia)

(Translated from Russian)

Swift, striking, smart, dashing cartoon. One of the best American kids movies of last year.

Las Vegas Review-Journal 3 stars

A movie that will appeal to kids more than "A Bug's Life".

Las Vegas Sun  A-

This movie will appeal to boys and girls and adults. Adults can smile at the jokes pointed toward them and the kids can laugh joyfully at the jokes pointed toward them.

# Libération (Michel Roudevich)

Parents et grands-parents ont leur part dans cet abracadabrant family-circus en couche-culotte qui traîne en longueur, bien que censé enchanter tout public.

Parents and grandparents have their share in this magical family-circus in diapers which trail in length, although supposed to enchant anyone.

Los Angeles Times (Kevin Thomas)

As a work of animation this Paramount release is fresh and witty, rich in its colors and jaunty in style.

With its lilting score and pleasant occasional songs, this Arlene Klasky and Gabor Csupo production has success written all over it.

Long Island Newsday 3 stars (Mike Anderson)

Oooh, babies, babies: Tommy Pickles gets a new brother, and the whole animated Nickelodeon TV gang gets lost in the woods. High adventure, low pressure.

# Lux

Sie sind chaotisch, abenteuerlustig und der absolute Renner im US-Fernsehen. Die Rugrats, das wilde Bündel energiegeladener Action-Babies, ziehen jede Woche mehr als 23 Millionen amerikanische Kinder und Erwachsene an die Bildschirme und haben unverwüstliche Evergreens wie Mickey Mouse und Bugs Bunny bereits aufs Abstellgleis geschoben. In Deutschland seit einiger Zeit am Sonntagmorgen via TV im Einsatz, beschließen die "Teppich-Ratten" in ihrem ersten Kinofilm, ein unliebsames, nerviges neues Geschwisterchen retour in den Kreissaal zu chauffieren - Zwischenfälle vorprogrammiert...

Gegenüber den kurzen Episoden der TV-Serie taucht der 80 minütige Film in neue Erlebniswelten ein.

Neben der bewährten Animationskunst der Produzenten von "The Simpsons" dürfte vor allem der Soundtrack Kids begeistern. Rap-Stars wie Rakim und Blackstreet sind zu hören, unter der musikalischen Leitung des Ex-Devo- Sängers Mark Mothersbaugh haben unter anderem Iggy Pop, Elvis Costello, Beck und Lenny Kravitz mitgewirkt. Und Busta Rhymes gibt als rappende Stimme des Reptar Wagons die Losung für den Film aus: "On Your Marks! Get Set! Ready! Go!".

They are the chaotic, adventurous merry-makers on US television. The Rugrats, the wild bundle of energy-loaded action babies, draws over than 23 million American children and adults every week, leaving everlasting evergreens such as Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny behind. In Germany for some time on Sunday morning TV, the "Teppich-Ratten" decide in its first motion picture film to return an unpleasant, nerve-racking new baby brother...

In relation to the short episodes of the TV series, the 80 minute film dives into new worlds.

Apart from the proven animation art of the producers of "The Simpsons", the soundtrack might also inspire the kids. Pop stars such as Rakim and Blackstreet, under the musical direction of the ex-DEVO singer Mark Mothersbaugh, can be heard, along with Iggy Pop, Elvis Costello, Beck and Lenny Kravitz. And Busta Rhymes tops it all as the rapper voice of the Reptar Wagon in his number: "On Your Marks! Get Set! Ready! Go!".

# El Mercurio (Santiago, Chile) (Esteban Cabezas)

El gran logro de la serie de dibujos animados "Rugrats" (o "Aventuras en Pañales") es su sintonía con la manera de pensar de los niños. La visión de sus personajes es de abajo hacia arriba, donde ven a unos adultos bastante poco adultos - y hasta ridículos- mientras, a ras de piso, su atención encuentra asuntos más propios de gente chica.

Ese mismo esquema se mantiene en este largometraje, el cual se centra en el nacimiento de un nuevo miembro de la familia Pickles. Y es precisamente Tommy, la guagua en pañales protagonista, quien ve alterado así su condición de hijo único. Una situación que, de verdad, resulta trágica para el mundo infantil, aunque en este caso todo termine con un final feliz.

"Rugrats: La Película" es un largometraje con un mensaje moral bastante efectivo - hay que encargarse de los hermanos- , el que se transmite sin la pompa y circunstancia de muchas películas para niños.

The great value of the "Rugrats" animated series is its syntony with the way children think.  The vision of its characters is from the knees down, where they rather see adults - and while there are ridiculous situations at floor-level, its attention finds the proper people and subjects.

That same scheme stays in this feature, which is centered around the birth of a new member of the Pickles family. And especially Tommy, the protagonist in diapers, who sees his role as an only child altered. A situation that, really, is tragic for the infantile world, although in this case everything finishes with a happy ending.

"The Rugrats Movie" is a feature film with a moral message - it is necessary to be in charge of the brothers, the one that is seen without the pomp and circumstance of many films for children.

Miami Herald (Christine Dolan)

The surly troops who got closed out of a packed-to-the-gills screening last weekend made a salient point: Rugrats is big, as big as any must-have toy, a must-see movie for the under-10 set.

Happily, it's also loads of fun for kids and parents.  

What makes The Rugrats Movie such satisfying family entertainment is that it knows how to please everyone.

The Mirror (London) 4 stars (Jonathan Ross) [From an ad for the film]

Rugrats mania hits Britain... a fantastic fun film for all the family.

# Le Monde  (Samuel Blumenfeld)

Adapté d'une série d'animation télévisée qui a remporté un grand succès aux Etats-Unis, Les Razmokets a trouvé lors de son passage sur le grand écran un public tout aussi important, se révélant lors de sa sortie, à l'automne 1998, une des grandes surprises au box-office américain. Loin d'afficher la même sophistication que les films d'animation produits par Disney ou DreamWorks, Les Razmokets jouent sur un autre terrain, propre aux séries d'animation comme South Park, issues elles aussi du petit écran: l'insolence et le mauvais goût. Les parents, préoccupés par leur vie professionnelle, laissent leurs gamins livrés à eux-mêmes. Les Razmokets décrivent une famille éclatée plus qu'idéalisée, avec un sens de la dérision qui en fait une véritable curiosité.

Adapted from a successful animated TV series in the United States, Rugrats found its passage to the big screen quite as significant; in the fall of 1998, it was a box office hit in the US. Far from displaying the same sophistication as cartoon films produced by Disney or DreamWorks, Rugrats play on another ground, specific to animated TV series like South Park: insolence and bad taste.The parents, worried by their professional life, leave their kids to fend for themselves.Rugrats describe a more eclectic family than idealized, with a curious direction of derision.

Montreal Gazette (Kathryn Greenaway)

Promoters describe The Rugrats Movie as "an adventure for anyone who's ever worn diapers."

Let's refine that a smidge. The Rugrats Movie is an adventure for anyone who's ever changed a diaper.

The cartoonish shenanigans will appeal to children in elementary school, the clever references to parental anxiety will hit home with moms and dads, and the unconventional artistry of the animation will appeal to all those in between with a love of animated film. But it is not a film that will entertain the whole family all the time. So watch for your special moments and yuck it up.

# El Mundo (Madrid, Spain) 3 stars (Ala Llovet)

Después de siete temporadas en televisión, la pandilla de los Rugrats da el salto al cine. Los Simpson de la animación televisiva infantil correrán mil y una peripecias en su primer largometraje, en el que no faltan ni su proverbial humor ácido ni la perspectiva del entorno a la altura de las rodillas de los adultos. La cinta comienza con una espectacular secuencia de impacto, a gran escala, como homenaje a Indiana Jones.

After seven seasons on television, the Rugrats gang jumps to the cinema. The Simpsons of the infantile set is seen by thousands and will run eventful journeys in their first big screenn movie, with their proverbial acidic humor in the perspective from the surroundings to the height of the knees of the adults. The film begins with a spectacular sequence of impact, on great scale, like a tribute to Indiana Jones.

# La Nacion (Buenos Aires, Argentina)

La película, como la serie que le dio origen, consigue el difícil equilibrio entre el registro elemental que exige el nivel de captación y de entendimiento de los más chicos y un arsenal de guiños y niveles de lectura (sobre la paternidad, el rol de los medios) destinados a los adultos que, inevitablemente, deberán acompañar a sus hijos.

The film, like the series that gave its origin, obtains to the dificult balance between the elemental registry that demands the level of more attention and understanding of the boys and an arsenal of winks and levels of reading (on fatherhood, the role of the media) destined to the adults who, inevitably, will have to accompany their children.

# El Nacional (Caracas, Venezuela)

La aventura que tiene la familia Pickles después del nacimiento del nuevo bebé. Los infantes se perderán en un tenebroso bosque y correrán muchos peligros. Valores como la amistad, la responsabilidad, la lealtad y la valentía se reflejan en una producción realizada para disfrutar en familia.

The adventure of the Pickles family after the birth of a new baby. The infants will be lost in a giant forest and will be in great danger. Values like friendship, responsibility, loyalty and bravery is reflected in a production designed for the whole family to enjoy.

National Post (Eileen Morrison) (Special thanks to Matt Hawthorne)

Parents should be more than a little entertained by The Rugrats Movie, the animated feature based on the popular daytime cartoon series and newspaper comic strip.

Unlike other annoying kiddie cartoon characters turned movie stars (Can you say Barney?), the cute, diaper-clad quartet that are the Rugrats get stuck in an adventure where there's enough in-jokes, creative animation and tunes to keep the adults fixated on the screen between popcorn spills and bathroom breaks.

No doubt the movie's merchandisers will cash in on the holiday wish lists of tots mesmerized by their big-screen buddies. But on its own, The Rugrats Movie actually stands up as a worthwhile 90-minute break while hanging out at the mall on a Saturday afternoon.

New York Times (Anita Gates)

No popular children's television series goes unmerchandized these days, and "Rugrats" is Nickelodeon's most popular. The pleasant surprise is that the film is a delight.

The New Yorker (Mimi Swartz, from her 11/30/98 article on Rugrats)

...The new team worked up a standard adventure tale that owes a great debt to Disney. The color is lush, there are dramatic, cliff-hanging moments, and it has a hip soundtrack. The sly jabs at yuppie values have mostly been replaced by pee and circumcision jokes, one of which struck my son as so funny, that he almost had to be resuscitated.

Newsweek (Malcolm Jones Jr. & Corie Brown)

It's not star power or hipness that has parents crowding their kids off the couch every night when the show comes on. The real charm of "Rugrats" lies in the fact that it looks and sounds a lot like your own life.

...By and large the show has made the leap to the eightplex with its scuzzy charm intact.

A franchise that's savvy and sweet -- and a financial blockbuster in the bargain.

That's a miracle even a dumb baby would recognize.

Nickelodeon UK (4 stars)

Forget "Titanic" and "Shakespeare In Love", the greatest video ever has just arrived in your livingroom (well, ok, we would say that, wouldn't we?!).

It's just as funny and fab as a regular episode, and great to finally see a new Rugrat on the scene. And while you're chuckling away, be sure to listen out for such special guest voices as Lenny Kravitz, Lisa Loeb and Iggy Pop, who play, er, singing babies in a maternity ward!

Northeast News-Gleaner (Philadelphia) (3 stars) (David J. Foster)

In the film's most clever observation, the kids deduce that all the crying in the maternity ward comes from babies who want to return to their more comfortable previous home..

That's what makes this film so clever. It's an adult parable told at a deceptively simple level kids will devour.

# El País (Madrid, Spain)

Los Rugrats no sólo entre los niños, sino que su ácido humor llega también a los adultos.

Rugrats is not only popular among children, but its acid humor is also popular among adults.

# Le Parisien 3 stars (Eric Leguèbe)

Les petits personnages de la télévision réussisent leur examen de passage au grand écran. Il y a du rythme, de l'invention, pas de vulgarité et même de l'aventure.

The small characters of television succeed in their movement to the big screen. There is rhythm, inventions, no vulgarity, and even adventure.

People (Leah Rosen)

"Hang on to your diapies", is Tommy's rallying cry... in the nifty "The Rugrats Movie", a clever and cleverly drawn animated feature.

Philadelphia Inquirer 4 stars (Carrie Rickey)

A keeper for the disposable-diapers set, The Rugrats Movie is an animated feature that should delight toddlers, tickle older sibs and heartily amuse parents.

The comic recognition that everyone from newborn to grandpop is unsettled by change is what makes The Rugrats - both this feature and the long-running cable series - so endearingly funny.

Ooh-eee-ooh, ah-ah, ting-tang, walla-walla bing-bang and a good time was had by all.

# Premiere (Russia)

(Translated from Russian)

The Rugrats Movie is a full-lenghth cartoon. It was based on a popular animation show (in our country, the show was aired by local channels under the name "Okh, uzh eti detki!" ("Oh, what the kids")). The production of this film is very big. The main characters of the show (and film) are precisely tots, little kiddies, not quite out of their diapers yet, but neverthless make discussions and take actions in entirely un-kiddish ways. The film is fun and quite intillegent, and it's reccomended to adult viewers. Especially as "Rugrats" has plenty of references to movies, which little kids may not have seen -- from "Indiana Jones" to "2001: A Space Odyssey". A very original number is inserted at the nursery, in which infants perform almost in the musical style of Bob Fosse. And of course, don't miss the moment when the pseudo-folklore circus train is rushing, with the monkeys escaping from a Russian circus. The film has something for everyone.

# Pro Sieben 4 stars (out of 5) (Claudia Sturtz)

"Rugrats: Der Film" ist die Gelegenheit, die Windelträger noch viel besser kennenzulernen.

In dem animierten Streifen über die Abenteuer einer Baby-Bande haben die Filmemacher viel Wert auf die Entwicklung der Charaktere und deren Beziehung zueinander gelegt. Mit ihrem Kinofilm dringen sie tiefer in die Gefühlswelt der Kinder ein, als es die Serie zuläßt. Gerade ihre Schwächen machen die "Rugrats" besonders liebenswert.

Kleine und große Zuschauer können sich in den Figuren wiederentdecken und von ihnen lernen. Die Babies sind die Helden, und Erwachsene gar nicht so perfekt, wie sie sein möchten. Das Leben mit Kindern, der Streß nach Dylans Geburt - da findet sich jede junge Familie wieder.

Der Zuschauer wird von Anfang an in Hochspannung versetzt: Im Stile Steven Spielbergs beginnt der Film wie ein Indiana-Jones-Abenteuer. Die Regisseure setzen alle technischen Möglichkeiten des modernen Zeichentrickfilms ein. Die Musik macht Laune, spiegelt Gefühle und Lebenslust der Charaktere wider. Die Serie "Rugrats" wurde bereits mit drei "Emmys" ausgezeichnet. Der Kinofilm ist für eingefleischte Fans ein Muß, für die ganze Familie und alle, die Kinder mögen, ein großer Abenteuerspaß.

"The Rugrats Movie" is a much better opportunity to become acquainted with the diaper carriers.

In the animated series about the adventures of a baby gang, the film producers put much value on the development of the characters and their relationship. With their motion picture they penetrate more deeply into the feeling world of the children than the series would permit. Even their weaknesses make the "Rugrats" particularly worth loving.

Viewers of all ages can rediscover themselves in the figures and learn from them. The babies are not perfect heroes; neither are the adults, as they would like to be. The life with children, the stress after Dylans birth - the family matters are clearly seen.

The spectator is shifted from the outset in high voltage: the film starts in the style of Steven Spielberg's "Indiana Jones" adventure. The directors use all modern technical possibilities in this animated movie. The music reflectsthe mood, feelings, life and desire of the characters. The "Rugrats" series was already distinguished with three "Emmys". This fun, adventurous movie is a must for all die-hard fans and for all the family.

# La Republica (Lima, Peru)

Tiene la personalidad típica de un bebé de tres meses de edad: egoísta, pretencioso y un poco malcriado. Lo quiere todo AHORA y hace lo que sea necesario para conseguirlo. Llora sin consuelo cuando se frustra, pero para de llorar inmediatamente cuando otra cosa le llama la atención. Aunque sus rabietas son insoportables, él tiene la suerte que tienen la mayoría de los bebés: es irresistiblemente adorable¨.

A quien hemos descrito líneas arriba es nada menos que Dil, el nuevo integrante de los Rugrats, sí, el recién nacido hermanito de Tommy Pickles, y protagonista de la producción que marca el debut cinematográfico de esta popular pandilla.

Dil estará acompañado de Tommy, de un año de edad; su mejor amigo, Carlitos; sus vecinos gemelos, Phil y Lil; y su malcriada primita, Angélica, quienes cuando están con adultos actúan como bebés, pero cuando se encuentran solos, se comunican entre ellos como si fueran niños de cinco años.

Ahora, en Rugrats: La película (Aventuras en Pañales) les tocará vivir la aventura más grande que pueda tener cualquier familia que es el nacimiento de un bebé.

Rugrats: La película es el nombre, pero no deje que el título lo engañe. Aunque los personajes principales son bebés, su visión de la vida es muy adulta y contemporánea. Prueba de ello es que, sus divertidas representaciones de la vida diaria y explora temas tales como la lealtad familiar, la valentía y la amistad.

He has the typical personality of a baby three months old: egoistic, pretencious and a little selfish. He wants it all NOW and he does what it is necessary to obtain it. He cries without consolation when he's frustrated, but stops to cry immediately when something else calls attention to him. Although his ravenocity is unbearable, he has the luck that most babies have: he is irresistibly adorable.

To whom we have described above is nothing less than Dil, the new Rugrat, Tommy Pickles' newborn brother, and protagonist of the production that marks the cinematographic debut of this popular gang.

Dil is joined by Tommy, 1 year old; his best friend, Chuckie; his neighbors' twins, Phil and Lil; and its greatest rival, Angelica; when they are with adults, they act like babies, but when alone, communicates among themselves as if they were 5 years old.

Now, in The Rugrats Movie, it will be called onto them to live the adventure greater than it can have any family with a birth of a baby.

The Rugrats Movie is the name, but don't let the title deceive you. Although the main characters are babies, its vision of the life is very adult and contemporary. Proof of it are amused representations of daily life and explorations of subjects such as family loyalty, bravery and friendship.

Rochester (NY) Democrat & Chronicle (7 out of 10) Jack Garner

Television's most popular children's show successfully toddles to the big screen, offering all the sass and cuteness that Rugrats fans expect -- and more.

Those unfamiliar with the Rugrats should imagine a younger variation of the Peanuts gang, more tightly strung for a faster-paced, more irreverent age. Like Charlie Brown and company, young Tommy Pickles even has a beloved pet dog; and the insolent 3-year-old Angelica is this troupe's version of the irrepressible Lucy.

The animation is richly colored, though amusingly crude (on a level with The Simpsons). The filmmakers generate energy whenever possible with swift, swirling movements -- an animated version of a Steadycam.

The script is clearly aimed at the kids -- but filled with just enough adult references and parodies of Raiders of the Lost Ark and other cultural artifacts to keep Mom and Dad amused.

Adding to the fun are several musical numbers, organized by Mark Mothersbaugh, founder of the '80s group Devo. The most successful number is an eccentric updating of Witch Doctor as a novelty song for the monkeys. Such notables as Iggy Pop and Elvis Costello are reportedly on the soundtrack, but it'll take better ears than mine to find them.
San Francisco Chronicle (P. Stack)

(Left: Little Man's pose is equivalent to 4 stars on a 5-star scale.)

(The Little Man and all of its poses are trademarks of , and © 1998, by the Chronicle Publishing Company.)

This delightfully funny big screen adventure featuring the Nickelodeon TV faves focuses on a new baby brother born into the Pickles family. But the babies find that having a newborn around poses some challenges, and when they try to return him to the "hopsicle'' for repairs, they're stuck in a major adventure. Great for kids; witty for adults.

San Jose Mercury News (Mike Antonucci)

THERE'S A scene in "The Rugrats Movie" in which the star cartoon characters -- the talking, toddling babies led by Tommy Pickles -- ride a supercharged wagon into a peaceful patch of forest, scattering an array of lovely animals.

Kids will laugh, unaware of any symbolism. Parents, on the other hand, may react with more of a knowing smile. Part of the scene's idea is to slyly contrast the style of the "Rugrats" with the traditional approach of animated movies from Disney.

From "Snow White" to "Lion King," we've been able to count on Disney for a certain percentage of bluebirds and lush landscapes. In this case, the jarring arrival of the Rugrat pack represents a declaration and an attitude: Watch out, a different kind of kids' movie has arrived.

The movie starts a little slow, but it's a fine first effort in what promises to be a string of "Rugrats" films.

The Sun (London) (Nick Fisher) [From an ad for the film]

...the best family entertainment money can buy.

Sun Newspapers (Cleveland, OH) (4 $'s) (Gerry Shamray)

Happily, this pleasing adaptation of the popular Nickelodeon series is filled with... visual delights. Parents will be as charmed as their little ones with the bizarre, wacky coolness that is Rugrats.

This slightly darker though very funny story contains scenes of the cartoon cast lost in the woods. It might prove too intense for the youngest in the family as an advance screening left a few toddlers in tears.

With so many animation companies imitating the Disney style, it's refreshing to see a film with its own identity, flashing a sheer bravura of send-up as well as an alternative style of music.

A small gripe: the lack of screen time for a personal favorite, the always caustic Angelica. Wonderfully voiced by Cheryl Chase, she's too much of a hoot to be left on the sidelines. But with a sequel already in the works, there's no doubt each of these zany Rugrats will eventually get big-screen focus.

TNT Roughcut  (Brian M. Raftery)

The show's big-screen spin-off is a clever fusion of adult and kid-friendly humor with eye-pleasing animation. There are parts that are a bit too cute for those without their own brood, but it's hard to disown any kids' film smart enough to feature a musical number with vocals by Beck, Iggy Pop and B- 52's frontman Fred Schneider.

TV Guide (US) (David Hiltbrand) [The Family Page, 12/12/98]

How many films are you likely to see this holiday season with sea chanteys, heroes in disposable diapers, circus monkeys and cracking dialogue like, "Can you identify this binky?" The Rugrats Movie has all that and more. It's the greatest thing since melba toast.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your popcorn-flavored binky and head to the movies.

# TV Movie (Björn Ahrens)

...alle Generationen auf ihre Kosten kommen: Kinder freuen sich über Pups- und Pinkelwitze, ältere Semester können über Wortspiele und Anspielungen auf Kino-Hits schmunzeln.

...all generations might come at their expense: Children look forward about the newborns and the pee joke; older people can enjoy references to other hit movies.

Telecom New Zealand Xtra  8 (out of 10) (Alexis Randell)

A great film that I would recommend for anybody. In particular, look out for the Bambi scene, one of the best in the film and the scene with the monkeys and the jar of bananas is not to be missed. You can even take your kids along.

# Télérama 3 stars (Bernard Génin)

Jules a 3 mois; Tommy, Charles-Edouard et Angelica, respectivement 1, 2 et 3 ans. Hauts comme trois pommes, les Razmokets sont certainement les plus jeunes héros de série télé animée. Les voici vedettes d'un long métrage propre à réunir la famille entière. Les fans (de 2 à 11 ans) leur font fête aux Etats-Unis depuis 1991 (chez nous, sur France 3, chaque mercredi). Chacun s'identifie à sa tranche d'âge. Les aînés se retrouvent en Jean-Roger et Lucie Cornichon, papa et maman débordés par leur marmaille. Le ton n'est ni à la poésie gnangnan ni à la leçon de morale. "On n'est pas chez Disney!" semblent dire les auteurs en évoquant furtivement Bambi par un plan d'animaux tout gentils, qui s'ébattent dans les fleurs avant que nos Razmokets viennent y semer la pagaille. On s'amuse franchement à ce cartoon qui nous ramène à hauteur de môme et où s'emparer d'un pot de confiture dans le frigo devient une aventure digne d'Indiana Jones.

Dil is 3 months; Tommy, Chuckie and Angelica, respectively 1, 2 and 3 years. Just like three apples, Rugrats are certainly the youngest heroes of the animated TV series. This is a fast-paced, full-length film suitable to watch with the whole family. The fans (from 2 to 11 years) watched them regularly in the United States since 1991 (in our country, on France 3 every Wednesday). Each generation is represented in this film. The older ones are Stu & Didi Pickles, dad and mom overflowed by their kids. The tone is neither with poetic justice nor with the lesson of morals. "One is not at Disney!", seem to say the authors by furtively evoking Bambi among very nice animals, which play about in the flowers before our Rugrats come to run amok. The best part with this cartoon brings us back to when we were kids, where seizing a banana split in the refrigerator becomes an adventure worthy of Indiana Jones.

Time (Richard Corliss)

Danger: Rugrats at work.

That might be an appropriate warning to all the other movies contending for children's movie money in this kid-glutted holiday season: with a brand loyalty earned every day for years on Nickelodeon, "The Rugrats Movie" has a chance to torpedo the competition.

The animation is distinctive...with a smart sense of design and fun.

While tweens might go for "A Bug's Life", and pious adults line up for "The Prince Of Egypt", neither film will have the urgency of a small voice saying, over and over, "Take me to Rugrats!" In the Pickles family, as in nearly every other TV brood, the kids run things. The next few weeks will determine whether the same applies to reel life.

The Times (London)

Painless, big cartoon adventure in which farting toddlers bond in a spooky forest. Witty enough for adults; an unavoidable necessity for three to eight-year-olds.

# Todo Noticias (Argentina news channel)

Basada en el célebre dibujito que los chicos identifican rápidamente, el film respeta exactamente las expectativas, con gran imaginación y un principio excelente. El mundo visto por niños que aún usan pañales, que se salvan de casualidad de los mayores peligros (lobos feroces, monos traviesos, cascadas, abismos, etc.), pero que necesitan la ayuda de los adultos que se caracterizan por ser torpes, miedosos, graciosos. Todo con definiciones y actitudes políticamente correctas. Muy bien realizada técnicamente.

Cradled in the popular animated series, the film exactly meets expectations, with great imagination and an excelent storyline. The world seen by children in diapers, that are saved by chance of the great dangers (ferocious wolves, miscievous monkeys, waterfalls, cliffs, etc.), but the help of gracious adults is necessary. Everything is well-defined with politically-correct attitudes. Technically very well-made.

Toronto Star 3 stars (Jennie Punter, Special to The Star) (Special thanks to Matt Hawthorne)

If they can tolerate the toddler talk and the occasional poopy joke, The Rugrats Movie may be a pleasant surprise for grown-ups taking small-fry to the first feature based on the popular animated series.

The Rugrats' world is one vibrant, intense colour and non-stop frantic action, and the Rugrats themselves, four toddler-age friends with disproportionally large heads, are like Charles Schulz's Peanuts hyped up on too much sugar.

Toronto Sun (Liz Braun)

What makes Rugrats work on TV -- loopy animation, a child's view of the world, laughs that make sense to kids and adults -- makes Rugrats work on the big screen, too.

Even parents who welcome the chance to take their offspring to a 'family' movie with the same enthusiasm they would normally reserve for, say, a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, may wish to make an exception for The Rugrats Movie.

But you can't have a good story without conflict. One of the things that makes The Rugrats Movie better than most is that it eschews the annoying fake conflict of most kids' movies -- will Barney forget his manners?!!! -- and goes for that wolf and those monkeys, not to mention the conflict of sibling rivalry.

On the other hand, this makes the film a bit too much for the under-five set. Really little kids do get scared.

Otherwise, The Rugrats Movie delivers the simultaneously innocent and edgy humour that distinguishes the TV show, it's quickly enough paced to please kids and it's attractive, vaguely weird and not entirely comprehensible to children, which is enough like real family life itself to win over most viewers, regardless of age.

Adults, mind you, will probably better appreciate a way-cool sountrack and have better luck recognizing the vocal talents of Tim Curry, Whoopi Goldberg, David Spade and, as the voice of that dinosaur/Reptar wagon thingy, Busta Rhymes.

The Tribune Newspapers (Mesa, AZ) (Liz Merritt) [From an ad for the film]

A must see for kids and parents alike. 'The Rugrats Movie' is a hillarious adventure.

Virgin Net Movies

Fun and nappiness abound in this film version of the popular TV cartoon about bad, bad babies, one of an increasing number of children's films sharp enough for adults to see by themselves. Don't miss the sly film references, or the bit where Lenny Kravitz, Patti Smith and Iggy Pop sing a musical piece to a maternity ward.

Washington Post (Michael O'Sullivan)

...they are the funniest bunch of crumb-snatchers to come down the pike since Buckwheat, Alfalfa and the "Our Gang" gang.

Although the momentum of the story flags just a bit near the end, there is enough genuine suspense to keep kids interested without scaring them, and the child's-eye view of the proceedings, where the denizens of the grown-up world loom like the trees of the forest, lends a unique verisimilitude to the perspective.

The real subversive joy of "Rugrats," however, lies in its irreverence, a lot of which is intended as much for adults as for today's hip youngsters. David Spade and Whoopi Goldberg lend their distinctive voices in funny cameos as a pair of forest rangers. Mark Mothersbaugh of the 1980s band Devo composed the lively, angular music. And early in the film, when expectant mom Didi is guessing her baby's gender, a friend slyly observes, "You know what they say: Born under Venus, look for a..." before she is abruptly cut off. Dizzy, delightful and just a bit deviant, "The Rugrats Movie" blends all the sarcastic sensibility of "The Simpsons" with the old-fashioned silliness of Soupy Sales.

Wilmington (NC) Star-News (3 stars) (Ben Steelman)

The movie bounces along with the speed of cartoon logic - and trust me, it's a lot funnier, and a lot smarter, than "Look Who's Talking".

The adult humor is so dense - the pun about putting "a fudge-itive in custardy" is almost Joycean - that it would take at least three viewings to catch them all. That's a mercy in households where The Rugrats Movie will probably be replayed on video again and again and again and again.

A surprising number of real stars do almost-uncredited voice cameos; my personal favorite was Tim Curry as ace TV newscaster Rex Pester, who manages to get all the kids' names wrong while mucking up the story for melodrama. ("Hey! Hands off the toupee!")

OK, the drawing would make Matt Groening, creator of The Simpsons, look like Caravaggio.

OK, the songs - credited to Mark Mothersbaugh of Devo fame - are mostly tolerable at best - although it was great to hear the Chipmunks' old Witch Doctor song again, and Angelica, the bratty, bossy older cousin, gets to do a nice parody of Blondie's One Way or Another while hunting for her half-bald Barbie-clone doll. (Note: Blondie would be just the right epoch for boomer moms with rugrats of their own.)

Still, The Rugrats Movie is that rarity, a kid-oriented movie that doesn't treat any of its fans like a bunch of babies. You may even like it if you don't have kids.

# Zero Hora (Porto Alegre, Brazil)

Adultos também podem se divertir com os Rugrats. As histórias fazem lembrar o clima fantasioso do antológico Calvin, personagem de quadrinhos de Bill Waterson. Os Anjinhos – concebidos por Arlene Klasky, a partir da observação de seus próprios filhos – têm uma imaginação delirante e deliciosa. Os adultos do desenho acham que eles são apenas uma miniatura de gente. Os pirralhos, no entanto, conversam entre si e conseguem ver coisas que as pessoas grandes não vêem. Um reles passeio pela garagem, por exemplo, pode ser tão impressionante quanto uma expedição à lua.

Adults can also have fun with the Rugrats. The stories makes us remember to the fantastic climate of Bill Watterson's comic strip, Calvin & Hobbes. Rugrats - created by Arlene Klasky, from the observations of their own children - has a delirious and delicious imagination. The adults of this cartoon find that they are only miniature people. The Rugrats, however, talk between themselves and see things that the big people do not see. One stroll to the garage, for example, could be like going to the moon.

Mixed Reviews:

These critics point out the good and the bad sides of the film, too good to be missed, but not quite enough for their total approval.

# 35millimetri (Matteo Divaga)

La trasposizione di una famosa serie TV purtroppo sconosciuta in Italia è bello e divertente. I giovani protagonisti di questa avventura animata sono bambini con emozioni e sentimenti veri, che crescono e cambiano nel vivere la loro personalissima favola-avventura. Il film porta avanti con forza i valori della famiglia, ma con poca ipocrisia La sorpresa è comunque quella di trovarsi di fronte ad un film per tutti. Bella l'animazione, difficile il doppiaggio.

The transition of a popular TV series, though unfortunately disowned in Italy, is beautiful and amusing. The young protagonists of this animated adventure are true children with emotions and feelings, that they grow and they change while playing make-believe. The film emphasizes the values of the family, but with little hypocrisy. However, the surprise is one of the best situations to a film for all. The animation is beautiful, but the dubbing is difficult.

Baltimore Sun (Chris Kaltenbach)

Parents, be prepared to have your kids' patience tested -- and, of course, your own.

At almost 90 minutes, "The Rugrats Movie" is three times the length of those Nickelodeon cartoons your children never seem to tire of.

Whether they're ready to sit in a dark room for that long is a decision only you'll be able to make.

You're also the ones who'll be forced to sit there alongside them, and be warned: The film is no more or less than the TV show writ large.

The Rugrats' big-screen adventure offers some clever musical numbers, including one in which a roomful of infants crack wise about the perils being a tiny baby in a big world. One of the film's adult treats comes at the end, as the credits reveal the diverse array of musicians who contributed to the film's soundtrack (including Elvis Costello, Lisa Loeb, Iggy Pop, Patti Smith, Lou Rawls and Jakob Dylan; there's even a Devo reunion track). And the visual style, drawn almost entirely from an infant's-eye view, gives the animation a unique feel.

Unless, of course, you've already overloaded on those 500 episodes of "Rugrats" that air on TV every week.

Box Office 2 stars (Karen Achenbach)

...while the TV series is unfailingly funny and soulful, the feature version is far too harrowing for children and not nearly amusing enough for parents. After a wonderful opening in which Tommy gets a new baby brother, this Nickelodeon Movies production betrays the original premise [of teaching about lessons in  friendship, courage & life] by dumping the kids into a fantasy ride of dangers in which escapes are unrealistic and lessons are absent.

The editing, mixing, shot design and soundtrack all keep the pace lively and the surface interesting; the best sequence is the musical number in the hospital nursery.

The animation has more texture, depth and shadows that the TV show, making the movie darker and busier. There are a few clever jokes, but "The Rugrats Movie" is not a pleasant experience for adults who know that the situations are too dangerous even for cartoon babies. Someone should have listened to Chuckie's oft-whined refrain: "Maybe this isn't such a good idea".

Calgary Herald (Mike Boon)

There isn't anything more pure or bewildered than the mind of a child and the pleasures of the Rugrats TV series usually liein the creators' ability to represent the budding imaginations of the very young.

The Rugrats Movie dispenses of such inspiration in favour of frantic plotting and a hackneyed storyline. The tykes' attempts to get home lose their appeal when the screenwriters can't think of anything more interesting for the kids to do in the woods than fight hungry circus monkeys. That's right -- a group of five kids with a cumulative age of less than six actually fights hungry circus monkeys.

That's not to say The Rugrats Movie is without its merits. The musical numbers, one of which features the voices of Beck, Lenny Kravitz, Lisa Loeb, Jakob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Patti Smith and the B-52's as newborn babies, are goofy and nicely brief.

Easily the best moments in The Rugrats Movie occur whenever Tommy is dealing with his feelings for Dill. The animation may be simplistic, but many of the scenes between the two tykes are more genuinely touching than most live-action children's films.

All in all, though, The Rugrats Movie is one case where more turns out to be less.

The Christian Science Monitor 2 stars (David Sterritt)

The animation is rough around the edges, and the sometimes vulgar jokes lack the wit of a good Simpsons episode, but fans of the TV series will be pleased.

Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) (Regents University reviewers Andrew Quicke, Dennis Bounds & Terry Lindvall)

Analysis: Poorly animated feature, but entertaining for children.

Quicke: This film has a first-class, very fast moving story, but the animation isn't very good so I'll give it a sort of half-vote.

Bounds: The kids are familiar with the animation, yet it goes on for an hour and a half and I wonder if they needed the musical numbers to flesh it out.

Lindvall: Yes, it's an extended half-hour program. My kids laughed maybe once or twice, but it was primarily potty humor.

Quicke: Some people worry whether the character Angelica is a positive role model, but they've softened her here and the two children I took to it liked it very much.

Lindvall: It's very harmless and I think, too, it shows how siblings fight with one another.

The Daily Telegraph (London)

Kiddies who know the animated baby Rugrats from TV's Live and Kicking will clamour to see this 90-minute version. Adults will enjoy the sharp jokes about the trials of having a new baby in a household. Still, the relentless action becomes exhausting, and may test tots' attention spans.

Deseret News (Salt Lake City) 3 stars (Jeff Vice)

This cute but slightly overlong cartoon could be compared to all those "Saturday Night Live" skits that are stretched out to feature-film length — except for the fact that the jokes here are funnier and the movie's heart is in the right place.

Also, the animation isn't that much better than the crude but stylized television art, except that it's fleshed out with digital coloring, and there are some cool computer-animated effects.

The pacing is brisk enough so young audiences won't get bored.

However, the story seems padded by excess songs and odd detours (such as the scenes involving escaped circus monkeys). And like it or not, some of Stu Pickle's devices look like they were designed for the purpose of making toys. (So parents should be warned beforehand that they may be taking a detour to a toy store after seeing the film.)

Fortunately, there are some terrific sight gags (including an Indiana Jones spoof) and a series scene-stealing voice cameos — from Tim Curry as a tabloid TV reporter and Whoopi Goldberg and David Spade as two cowardly park rangers.

Evening Post (Bristol, England)  (3 stars)

The baby talk will keep you smiling and there are plenty of nappy gags that the kids will love, but it is the idea of seeing the world through the eyes of youngsters that has always made each Rugrats episode special and the same is true in the film.

The outcome is a good but not a great movie. If it rains throughout the school's Easter holidays, a trip to the see the Rugrats will be perfect. If the sun is shining, I'd prefer the park.

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 2.5 stars (Robert Philpot)

The theory behind The Rugrats Movie, apparently, is that if adults like big, loud, dumb action movies, 4-year-olds will like 'em, too. And this Rugrats is practically the Con Air of cartoons: excessive, barely coherent, with just enough easy sentimentality to make you think that there's some sensitivity at work.

Otherwise, the movie deserves credit for not trying to out-Disney Disney, although it does feature some unnecessary songs -- including a maternity-ward production number that somehow attracted a whole Lollapalooza's worth of alt-rock artists (Patti Smith!?!). But although Fox, Warner Bros. and DreamWorks have all delivered moderately successful variations on the Disney formula, Paramount seems to be going its own way with stuff like this and Beavis and Butt-head Do America.

What the movie has to offer as a whole is up for debate. It delivers a few clever jokes and movie references for adults and a lot of fast-moving noise for kids, but it's also darker than you might expect.

If your own rugrats are nagging you to go, you'll probably get your money's worth (especially if you catch a bargain matinee), but you won't get much more. Stick around through the closing credits, though -- there's a bonus scene at the end.

The Daily Guardian (Manchester, England) 6 out of 10 (Jonathan Romney)

The Rugrats Movie is a brisk extension of the TV cartoon about toddlers wildly misreading the adult world. The feature adds escaped Russian monkeys, a runaway wagon in the shape of the brats' beloved Reptar (a benign Godzilla for ankle-biters) and a splash of nursery sentiment. It can be unnerving seeing TV's big pink heads blown up to huge cinema size, but the 70 minutes-worth is fast-moving, witty and not to be faulted on MTV cred - listen for Beck, Iggy Pop and Laurie Anderson among the Busby Berkeley chorus of wee-spraying new-borns.

# Express (Cologne, Germany)

Die Peanuts hatten große Köpfe mit Knopfaugen und waren auf ihre frühreife Weise sehr sympathisch. Die Rugrats haben große Köpfe mit Riesenaugen und sie sind frech, aufdringlich und selbstsüchtig. Sie sind nicht ganz so häßlich wie die Simpsons und bei aller Impertinanz immer noch sympathischer als Beavis und Butthead. Im Vergleich zu South Park sind sie ausgesprochen anspruchsvoll gezeichnet und haben im Vergleich zu Disneys Doug immerhin so viel Realitätsbewußtsein, daß sie ihre Botschaften für Gemeinschaftsempfinden, Tapferkeit und anderes zeitlos gültiges Tugendgut auch ohne Kalenderblattformulierungen vermitteln können. Als Serie sind die Rugrats eine Bank im frühmorgendlichen Kinderprogramm des Privatsenders ProSieben; man konnte sich gegen vielfältige japanische und US-Konkurrenz durchkrabbeln. Im Kino wird das vermutlich ein härterer Weg zum Erfolg werden.

"Rugrats - Der Film" ist viel zu sehr dem TV-Konzept verhaftet, um sich als erzählerisches Konzept auf Spielfilmlänge behaupten zu können. Die Story um dreisten Nachwuchs, ahnungslose Eltern, einen mißhandelten Hund und allerlei Schrecknisse im dunklen Wald ist ein episodisches Patchwork ohne festen Zusammenhalt. Es werden alle möglichen Gags und Cliffhanger bemüht, damit die wacklige erzählerische Form einigermaßen in Schwung bleibt. Zitate aus erfolgreichen Spielfilmproduktionen (u.a. "Jäger des Verlorenen Schatzes") sollen als selbstreflexives Element die intellektuellere Kundschaft bei der Stange halten, während der Rest mit groben Karikaturen und viel Lautstärke im Scherz betäubt wird. Das erklärte Zielpublikum soll jeder sein, der mal Windeln getragen hat. Kein Wunder, daß die Rugrats da kein eigenes Gesicht mehr haben konnten.

"Peanuts" had large heads with button eyes and was very pleasant in its earlyripe way. The Rugrats has large headings with giant eyes and cheeky, obtrusive and addictive. They are not quite as ugly as "The Simpsons" and more pleasant with all imperinance than "Beavis and Butthead". Compared with "South Park" they are much fastidiously drawn with reality consciousness and have compared with "Disney's Doug" nevertheless for their messages for community, feeling, bravery and other timeless valid virtue property without reservations. As a series, "Rugrats" is in the bank as an early-morning children's program on Pro7; one could crawl oneself against various Japanese and US competition. In the cinema, it will probably be harder to achieve that success.

"The Rugrats Movie" has much too much arrested the TV concept, in order to be able to maintain ground as a feature-length story. The story around a bold, new generation, notionless parents, an abused dog and all kinds of frightening animals in the dark forest is a patchworked episode without fixed co-operation. All possible gags and cliffhanger are endeavored, so that the rickety story form, to some extent, remains in momentum. Spoofs from successful feature films (among other things "Raiders Of The Lost Ark") are to keep more intellectual customers interested, while the remainder, with rough caricatures and jokes are anesthetised. The avowed target audience should be everyone who worn diapers. No miracle that the Rugrats could have been there more.

# L'Express 2 stars (Gilles Médioni)

Si le graphisme assure le service minimal (...) les rebondissements et les dialogues devraient contenter la cible visée : les 6-8 ans.

The graphics are minimal... the action and the dialogues should satisfy the target concerned: 6-8 year olds.

Maclean's (Brian D. Johnson)

..It is a banal fare a magic-free dose of bottled formula siphoned from the TV cartoon series. Some jokes are specifically designed to keep parents awake. But they are just ironic asides in a tale designed to push a lot of familiar buttons.

...Rugrats seems to work mostly as a dirty movie for little kids. The biggest laugh goes to a scene in a maternity ward, as a circle of newborns pee to form a fountain with a rainbow. We are a long way from Oz -- wnen Dorothy sang "Over The Rainbow", a golden shower was presumably not what she had in mind.

New York Post 2.5 stars (Thelma Adams)

''Rugrats the Movie'' simply tries too hard and travels too far afield. The series' funniest moments occur closer to home, in the contrast between grounded kids and neurotic parents. While the movie might be ''more fun than picking noses,'' as one kid says, it's not that much more fun.

# Página/12 (Buenos Aires, Argentina) (Martín Pérez)

Un punto de vista respetado a rajatabla en su primer largometraje, en el que principalmente se cuenta la historia del nacimiento del hermanito de Tommy, tema de conflicto en la vida de todos los niños, sean animados o no.

Pese al pasar a la pantalla grande, entonces, está claro que nada ha cambiado en la concepción de mundo Rugrats. Algo que argumentalmente es decididamente una ventaja, pero técnicamente es una lástima, ya que por momentos se nota la calidad televisiva del producto. Pero está claro que eso es lo de menos. Como el hecho de que, al doblarse al castellano, varias de las canciones compuestas por el ex Devo Mark Mothersbaugh pierden gran parte de su gracia. El musical de la nursery, sin ir más lejos, se queda sin las voces de Laurie Anderson, Beck, Jakob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Lenny Kravitz y Patti Smith, entre otros. Se sabe: negocios son negocios, sobre todo si apuntan a los infantes.

Claramente dividida en dos partes –una para el nacimiento del nuevo hermanito y otra para la aventura en el bosque– The Rugrats Movie sufre del mismo mal que suelen sufrir las aventuras de televisión llevadas al cine: es larga. A pesar de estar aderezada por gags apropiados para mayores, sus ochenta minutos se hacen excesivos. No por el lado del nacimiento del nuevo personaje –lo mejor del film–, sino por el lado de la aventura en el bosque. Es que, pese a la abundancia de personajes en esta segunda parte, la esencia del film está en la gracia y la inventiva con las que recrea algo tan normal como la llegada de un nuevo miembro a la familia Rugrats. Después de todo, con las maravillas de lo cotidiano estos pequeños aventureros se hacen toda una película. O media. De la rodilla para abajo, digamos. Su particular punto de vista.

A point of view respected to the talking babies in their first big-screen release,  in which mainly the story of the birth of the Tommy's little brother is recounted,  subject of conflict in the life of all children, animated or not.

In spite of what'shappening on the big screen, it's clear that nothing has changed  in the Rugrats' conception of the world. Something that argumentally is decidedly an advantage, but technically is a pity, since TV's quality moments are noticed. But it is clear that that is the one of less. Like the fact that, when bending to the singers, several of the songs composed by the ex-Devo Mark Mothersbaugh lose a great part of its grace. The musical comedy of nursery, without going more far, is best left without the voices of Laurie Anderson, Beck, Jakob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Lenny Kravitz and Patti Smith, among others. It is known: business is business, mainly if they aim at the infants.

Divided clearly in two parts - one for the birth of the new little brother and another one for the adventure in the forest, The Rugrats Movie suffers badly of the same thing that  film versions of TV shows have: it's too long. In spite of being decorated by gags appropriate for the kids, eighty minutes is too excessive. Not due to of the birth  of a new character - the best thing in the film -, but by the side-adventure in the forest. It is that, in spite of the abundance of characters in this second part, the essence of the film is in the grace and the inventiveness with which it recreates something as normal as the arrival of a new member to the Rugrats family. After all, these small adventurers take control of the film's wonders. On average. From the knee down, we say. It's a particular point of view.

# Planete Cinema 2 stars (Sarah Taylor)

C'est vrai que les petites têtes blonde apprécieront certainement ces Razmokets plus que vous, mais ce film délivre tout de même un beau message qui va peut-être vous simplifier l'existence.

It is true that the small blonde heads will certainly appreciate Rugrats more than you, but this film delivers the same beautiful message which perhaps simplifies the existence.

# Premiere (France) 2 stars (Stéphanie Lamome)

Pour ceux qui ne sont pas plantés devant les Minikeums tous les jours à 17 heures, les Razmoket sont de superbébés d'à peine 2 ans qui parlent, marchent et adorent jouer aux aventuriers de l'Arche perdue. C'est l'un des dessins animés les plus représentatifs de la nouvelle génération des toons: sans niaiseries et au graphisme minimaliste. Ce long métrage tient les mêmes bonnes promesses que la série en mélangeant les péripéties des cinq gniards perdus dans une forêt peuplée de singes affamés et d'un très grand méchant loup, et des situations «adultes» (allusions grivoises joliment détournées comme «maman à lunettes, bébé à zigounette»).

For those who aren't planted in front of Tots TV everyday at 5PM, Rugrats are talking superbabies who are barely 2 years old, playing adventurers of the lost ark. It is one of those cartoons most representative of a rising generation of toons: without sillinesses and with minimal graphics. This full-length film holds the same good promises as the series by mixing the adventures of the five kids lost in a populated forest of famished monkeys and a very large malicious wolf, and adult situations (nicely diverted like "mom with glasses", "baby with rattle(?-SM)").

# Publico (Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico) (James Berardinelli)

Es fácil reconocer cuando una cinta es hecha con el único propósito de generar dinero fácil, y éste es exactamente el caso de Aventuras en pañales.

La película es básicamente una versión extendida de un episodio de la famosa serie animada de televisión, con la única diferencia de que los valores de producción son más elevados (parece que Paramount y Nickelodeon han invertido unos cuantos dólares extra en la animación por computadora).

Para los menores de diez años, todo esto, sin duda, les resultará atractivo. Aventuras en pañales intenta tirarle algunos huesos al público adulto, pero éstos ya están carcomidos, como las sátiras a las cintas Cazadores del arca perdida, El fugitivo y 2001: Odisea del espacio. Estos guiños no logran mantener a los adultos involucrados en el filme, pero al menos evita que se duerman.

Pero (y esto lo comprobarán los papás que lleven a sus pequeños), Aventuras en pañales es una película que los niños gozarán, sean o no fanáticos de la serie de televisión.

It is easy to recognize when a film is made only to make easy money, and this one is exactly the case of Rugrats.

The film is basically an extended episode of the famous animated TV series, with increased production values being the only difference (it seems that Paramount and Nickelodeon have invested a few extra dollars in computer animation).

For kids under 10, all this, without a doubt, will be attractive to them. Rugrats tries to throw some bones to the adult public, but these are already decayed, especially in satires like Raiders Of The Lost Ark, The Fugitive & 2001: A Space Odyssey. These do not manage to keep the adults interested, but at least they keep them from falling asleep.

However (and this will verify the dads that takes their small ones), Rugrats is a film which the children will enjoy, whether or not they are fans of the TV show.

St. Petersburg Times B- (Steve Persall)

"The Rugrats Movie" is the inevitable extension of that Nickelodeon network success, and it arrives... with the expected problems. The television show's frantic doodle motif is so simple, containing such elementary pinpoint logic, that padding the premise into a feature film is an obvious necessity. Some of the time-stretching tactics work; others fall flat. Blame it on growing pains.

# Spielfilm

Wenn das Presseheft zum Film recht hat, und Pressehefte lügen nie oder zumindest nur selten, dann handelt es sich bei den "Rugrats" um Amerikas erfolgreichste Kinderserie im Fernsehen. Hierzulande hat der Kindersender Nickelodeon, der seit einigen Monaten nicht mehr im Kabel ist, das Produkt ausgestrahlt. Allein in der ersten Woche spielte der Film in Amerika fast 30 Mio. Dollar ein. Auch nur annähernd vergleichbare Umsätze sind in der alten Welt nicht zu erwarten. Erstens sind die "Rugrats" bei uns weitgehend unbekannt, und zweitens sind die Abenteuer der Anarcho-Babies, wie auch das Konflikt- und somit Scherzpotential der Serie, einfach zu amerikanisch, um auf der anderen Seite des großen Teiches immer nachvollziehbar zu sein.  

Immerhin, einige Pluspunkte kann der Film durchaus verbuchen. Etliche Gags zünden recht ordentlich, vor allem dann, wenn sie auf Versprechern oder Buchstabendrehern basieren. Durchaus mutig mag auch sein, daß der Film keine eindeutige Zielgruppe hat. Das Verständnis der Szene den Abstand des Alters voraussetzt. Die bei aller Naivität durchaus stilvollen Animationen kommen einem irgendwie bekannt vor. Und in der Tat ist für die "Rugrats" dieselbe Produktionsfirma zuständig, die auch "Die Simpsons" oder "Beavis & Butthead" betreut hat.

Für den Kinofilm wurde eine wüst-abenteuerliche Handlung ausgekaspert, die möglichst viele exotische und unterschiedliche Locations abdecken mußte, einfach um den Schauwert des Films zu steigern bzw. zu strecken. Dafür wurden dem Drehbuch wilde Kapriolen zugemutet, die einzig dem vordergründigen Spektakel dienen und die Geduld des wohlmeinenden Zuschauers strapazieren.

Somit hat der Film also gerade wegen seiner inhaltlichen Überfrachtung ziemliche Längen, und das trotz einer Laufzeit von 1 1/4 Stunden. Aber wie gesagt, etliche Gags zünden durchaus, und so schlecht ist das Ganze gar nicht.

If the press booklet is true, and press booklets never or rarely lie, "Rugrats" is America's most successful children's series on television. In this country they were once seen on Nickelodeon, which is no longer on the air in Germany. However, in the first week in America, the film brought in almost $30 million. However, approximately comparable conversions are not to be expected in the old world. First of all, "Rugrats" is to a large extent unknown with us, and secondly the adventures of the Anarcho-babies, just like the conflict and thus the joke potential of the series, are simply too American, in order to be always comprehensible on the other side of the ocean.

Nevertheless, the film has some pluses. Some gags ignites quite properly, above all if they are based on speakers or letter turners. Quite courageously it may also be that the film does not have a unique target group. The understanding of the scene presupposes the distance of the age. The animations quite styleful with all naiveity one somehow admits. And indeed the same production company is responsible for the "Rugrats", which also cared for "The Simpsons" or "Beavis & Butthead".

For the movie, the wild-adventurous action was clever, which had to cover as much exotic and different locations as possible in order to easily increase or stretch the value of the film. But wild capers was courageously written in the film script, which only serves as the foreground spectacle and which strains the patience of the spectator.

The film is of considerable length because it's overloaded contentwise, despite a run time of 1 1/4 hours. But as said, some gags go well, and so the whole is not at all bad.

TV Guide (Canada) B- (David Kronke)

[Tara] Charendoff describes the Rugrats' appeal: "They incorporate the comedy behind how kids see the world and how adults see the world and how adults see kids seeing the world. There are inside jokes for the kids, inside jokes for the adults, and everyone has a good time watching it. I never heard anyone say they didn't love the Rugrats."

The problem with the movie is that it strays from the series -- the show derives humor from small, everyday observations, but the film went huge and splashy, and the small moments got squashed. My stepdaughter, who calls herself "the world's biggest Rugrats fan", was disappointed with the movie. "It wasn't as funny as the TV show," she said, proving she could do my job with ease.

Tampa Tribune 2.5 stars (Bob Ross)

The diaper-wearing, wisecracking tykes made a satisfactory leap to the big screen, and their hordes of pre-school admirers are sure to drag daddies and mommies along.

Even if you never saw the TV show, you can enjoy the daffy realities of the Rugrats' sibling rivalries and their preoccupations with bodily functions. No other movie has finished a song with a rainbow made from urinary spray.

USA Today 2.5 stars (Susan Wloszczyna)

Hold on to your diapies, gang, be they Huggies or Depends.

...a sensitive story of sibling rivalry that also piles on predictable perils, the better to keep the real rugrats in their seats.

"This is more fun than picking noses", says Lil. Or is it Phil? Either way, that's not a half bad way to put it.

Venue 3 stars

Since they're usually in a playpen, these adventures generally take place in the imagination only, but obviously further plot contrivance was required of a full-length feature film. While the animation is nowhere near as good as A Bug's Life and the humour doesn't come close to The Simpsons, at 80 minutes this is just about the right length to keep adults awake and little ones amused.

# Die Welt  (Anne Schlesinger)

Muß ein Baby tun, was ein Regisseur tun muß? Was hat der aus der kleinen, häßlichen Pampers-Truppe gemacht? Die Rugrats im Kino ­ das ist eine langweilig aufgeblasene Episode, die eventuell noch die ganz Kleinen vom Hocker reißt ­ dann, wenn ein großer Wolf vor den bis vierjährigen Filmhelden auftaucht.

Ab und zu immerhin blitzt der alte Witz durch den öden Schleier. Als die Babys einander auf die Schultern steigen, um an eine Leckerei ganz oben auf dem Schrank zu kommen, sich dabei völlig in die Welt Indiana Jones' hineinversetzen und schreckliche Ängste ausstehen, erwischt zu werden. Obwohl die Moral von der Geschichte so vordergründig ist, mündet sie immerhin in eine witzige Szene. Letztlich tut ein Baby doch noch, was ein Baby tun muß.

Does a baby gotta do, what a director must do? What was made from the small, ugly Pampers troop? The Rugrats in the cinema ­ that is a boringly blown up episode, possibly brought the quite small ones to tears ­ if a large wolf emerges towards the four years old film heroes.

From time to time the old joke nevertheless flashes by. When the babies rise each other to the shoulders, in order to reach a dessert high above on the cabinet, they imagine themselves in a world of Indiana Jones and terrible fears pend to be gotten. Although the moral of history is so foregoing, they nevertheless flow into a funny scene. In the long run, a baby's gotta do, what a baby's gotta do.

Willamette Week (Portland, OR) (Brian Libby)

Television's Rugrats may tickle your kid's fancy on the big screen, but at what price?

While the film version of Rugrats features enhanced animation, an expanded story and a soundtrack featuring everyone from Busta Rhymes to Iggy Pop, it still obeys the adage "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

Parents looking for that safe bet will probably not regret choosing this as a film they take their kids to over the Thanksgiving holiday.

As with all movies borne of television shows, though, one can't help but wonder what movie was not made so that Rugrats could be repackaged for the silver screen. Somewhere in the trash bin of a Hollywood studio may be the script for a new, original film that could have dazzled your children with fresh ideas and a captivating new spin. Think of your favorite childhood film and imagine if its creators had shelved it in favor of a film version of, say, Howdy Doody. Yes, your children will probably love the movie version of Rugrats, but luckily they'll never know its cost.

World Magazine (Christian news magazine) (Chris Stamper)

When The Rugrats Movie sticks to the tried and true, it works; when it tries to be hip, it falls flat. There's an awful soundtrack featuring warmed-over big-kid irritants like Iggy Pop, Devo, and rapper Busta Rhymes. Still, Rugrats bucks the trend of TV-to-film disasters and makes the kids' rambunctiousness and funny minds work on the big screen. Sure, it's not Snow White, but it's some of the smartest children's entertainment of our generation. And it's less heavy-handed and melodramatic than the annual Big Events from Disney and its imitators.

Negative Reviews:

The following critics don't approve of the film, as they claim the film has little or no merit.

The Austin (TX) Chronicle (Hollis Chacona)

Each half-hour show features two short segments that are bright, quick, and snappy, driven by silly flights of fancy and engaging characterizations. With the same cast at their beck and draw and a truly brilliant TV Passover special under their belts, it seemed as though the cartoon's producers were ready for the big screen. Or maybe not. Despite a few funny moments, and some richly colored and fluid animation, The Rugrats Movie simply cannot sustain the frenetic charm and imagination of the shorter TV segments. Particularly ill-advised are the musical numbers that seem artificial and de rigueur despite some pretty heavy musical artillery (Elvis Costello, No Doubt, Laurie Anderson, Iggy Pop to name but a few). The Rugrats Movie has traded in imagination for storytelling. The destination has become more important than the ride. On the bright side, we still have [the Rugrats]. The ensuing adventure has a few giggles and a warm, sweet ending, but The Rugrats Movie is more like a pleasant Sunday drive in a big smooth sedan than the TV show's riotous joyrides in a fast, shiny convertible.

# Cinema "Thumbs Down" (Renée Bertelmann)

Im US-Slang nennt man Babys Rugrats. Auch sonst ist dieser Comic ein Phänomen, das nur Amerikaner verstehen.

Die "Rugrats" sind in den USA ein Kinohit. Bereits am ersten Wochenende spielte die Story um eine Sandkasten-Clique, die sich im tiefsten Wald verirrt, 28 Millionen Dollar ein und ließ den Konkurrenten "Schweinchen Babe in der großen Stadt" in der Versenkung verschwinden. Eine Fortsetzung für das Jahr 2000 ist bereits in Arbeit, und die TV-Serie, seit 1991 auf Sendung, hat sich längst als Quotenhit und Popkulturphänomen etabliert.

Jeden Samstagabend flimmert zur besten Sendezeit eine neue Episode über den Bildschirm, während Kinder und Erwachsene gleichermaßen begeistert davorhängen. Ganz Amerika ist süchtig nach den Abenteuern einer Handvoll sprechender Babies - wie nach Donuts oder Baseball. Den Rest der Welt wird die Faszination für "Rugrats" wohl kaum packen. Zu grob sind die Szenen animiert, zu quiekig die Babystimmen, zu aufdringlich die Song-Einlagen. Um das Kinoabenteuer von Tommy, Chuckie, Phil und Lil, die das ewig schreiende Baby Dil ins Krankenhaus zurückbringen wollen, spannend zu finden, darf der Zuschauer nicht über eine kniehohe Perspektive hinausgewachsen sein.

Was den Rugrats abgeht, ist der philosophische Witz der Peanuts und der bei Erwachsenen so beliebte Zynismus der Simpsons. Aber vor allem sind die kleinen Racker hierzulande durchs Fernsehen kaum bekannt geworden. Nicht einmal Babys gucken Sonntag morgens um zehn Minuten vor acht ProSieben.

Dieser Film könnte Ihnen gefallen, wenn Sie "Beavis & Butthead" und "Die Biene Maja" mochten.

In the US, babies are called "Rugrats", a phenomenon, only an American could understand.

In the US, "Rugrats" is a cinema hit. On the first weekend the story brought the sand box clique, which errs in the deepest forest, $28 million and let the competitor "Babe -- Pig In The City" sink and disappear. A sequel for the year 2000 already is in works, and the TV series, on the air since 1991, was an established hit and pop culture phenomenon.

Each Saturday evening a new episode is aired, while children and adults both enthusiastically watch. America is completely addicted to the adventures of a handful of talking babies - just like donuts or baseball. The fascination for "Rugrats" will probably hardly affect the remainder of the world. The scenes are too roughly animated, the squeaky baby voices, the obtrusive songs. In the movie, Tommy, Chuckie, Phil and Lil, try to return the eternally crying baby Dil to the hospital, such excitement that may be lost to anyone without a knee-high perspective.

The Rugrats, the philosophical joke of "Peanuts" and the cynicism of "The Simpsons" are so popular with adults. But above all the small rascals is in this country are hardly watched on TV. Babies don't even watch Sunday morning at 7:50AM on ProSieben.

This film could please you, if you liked "Beavis & Butthead" and "Maya The Bee".

Evening Gazette (Marlborough, North Yorkshire, England) (Martyn Finn)

(See above for positive review)

If you like the TV series, you'll enjoy the movie - it's so similar. As the gang toddle from the playpen to the forest we anticipate another great adventure - that never comes. One memorable moment is when the adorable/ugly baby is born into the family. A bug's life is much more exciting than a toddler's life.

The Irish Times  ("H.B.")

If you're reading this review, you probably already know that The Rugrats is the children's TV phenomenon of the Nineties (sorry, Tinky Winky). If you've actually gone so far as to sit down and watch the cartoon, you know one big secret of its success: in spite of its ubiquitous pre-school protagonists, for us larger viewers it's really a satirical domestic drama about modern parents. To heck with the kiddie characters, which are all familiar types from generations of adventure narratives. Check out the grownups: the feminist mom, the single dad, the stay-at-home father, the career-crazed mother - all obsessed to a greater or lesser extent with the quality of their parenting. The satire is simple: in virtually every episode the toddlers run completely out of control, often without the parents even noticing. This is basically the plot of The Rugrats Movie, only more so. Too much more so. To fill 75 minutes and a large screen - and, perhaps most importantly, to fill in the age gap between the TV show's core under-five fans and their grownup minders - the Rugrats team have felt the need to pump up the volume, the pace and the scares. Crucially (and fatally, to my increasingly bored mind), they've de-domesticated it, setting most of the action in a mythically dark and rainy forest, where all the little ones are lost.

The Rugrats come to the big screen with some quite stunning animation, providing a dynamic and convincing sense of movement and space in which the crudely-drawn characters sometimes seem misfitted. Also added are a few tolerable songs: bratty Angelica, my daughters' favourite, sings a variation on Blondie's One Way or Another for us thirty-something parents. Thanks, but no thanks.

New York Daily News

Directed by Norton Virgien and Igor Kovalyov, "The Rugrats Movie" is just another unimaginative action film, an Indiana Jones parody filled with familiar thrills and predictable dangers.

And yet, the potential is there for something more meaningful.

It's scary stuff and maybe too scary for little kids but it's not about anything but tired old movie dangers, situations that even pre-schoolers have seen a hundred times.

The film never acquires the menace and import of a fairy tale, or the rigor and density of a vintage Disney creation.

The kids won't be bored, but your personal Rugrats deserve better.

North County Times (Northern San Diego County, CA) (Pam Kragen)

If you're a big fan of jokes about dirty diapers, farts and other bodily functions, or if you think the way toddlers mix up words is just precious, 'The Rugrats Movie' is right up your alley.

The movie faithfully follows the 'Rugrats' formula but adds in seemingly endless thrills and chills and a few dead-on-arrival songs.

Don't get me wrong - kids love this stuff. Adults, however, may cringe at the endless scatological jokes or may just be bored by the humdrum story line.

The movie has its moments. The best is the New Age Lipschitz Center for Holistic Birthing. There are also clever references to 'Raiders of the Lost Ark' and 'The Fugitive' and a few celebrity cameos.

But mixed in with this brainy humor are too many jokes that aim for the lowest common denominator. In the first 15 minutes of the film, there are spoken and sung references to poop, farts, circumcision, vomit, blowing bubbles with your bottom in the bathtub and nose-picking. In the hospital nursery, one song concludes with all the newborns peeing sky-high in unison to create a rainbow-tinged fountain of urine. Charming.

The decision to add a musical score was a bad one. All of the songs by Mark Mothersbaugh (of Devo fame) are better left unsung.

'The Rugrats Movie' may not be highbrow animated entertainment on the order of Disney's 'Mulan,' but it will be popular with small children.

Whether a child's time is best spent in a film where characters call each other names like 'chocolate pants' is another matter entirely.

The Observer (Manchester, England) (Philip French)

[Disney's Mighty Joe Young] is certainly better value than the dislikeable The Rugrats Movie, a big-screen spin-off from the TV cartoon and aimed at sophisticated six-year-olds with dim-witted parents.

Ottawa Citizen 1 star (Chris Cobb)

A commercial with high-priced talent (including Tim Curry and Whoopi Goldberg) doing the voices. This 90-minute version of the popular children's TV show is a lazy production that tries nothing new in either script or animation, and its four- to nine-year-old audience will be baffled by the maturity of its story.

St. Paul Pioneer Press 2 stars (Chris Hewitt)

There's nothing here that is special enough to make people want to pay for something they can already get on TV for free.

# Studio 1 star (Patrick Fabre)

...une insulte aux dessinateurs de Disney ou de DreamWorks qui s'échinent à faire du dessin animé un art.

...an insult with the draughtsmen of Disney or DreamWorks who are dedicated to make cartoons an art form.

# Stuttgarter Zeitung

"Rugrats - Der Film'', der die kleinen Zeterblagen der Familie Pickels losziehen läßt, das neue Geschwisterchen auszusetzen, und sie dabei aus der vertrauten Stadtumgebung in den Märchenwald führt, bricht aber mit allen Grundvoraussetzungen der Fernsehserie. Er spinnt ein langes Abenteuer statt lauter kleiner Alltagserkundungen aus. Er verweigert die stete Transformation der Wirklichkeit zum Spielmaterial der Rugrats-Phantasie und läßt seine kleinen Abenteurer stattdessen auf eine relativ starre Welt treffen - bedrohliche Wölfe im Zauberwald. Und obendrein buhlt er die ganze Zeit mit Filmzitaten um erwachsenes Amüsement: eine ziemlich nässende Musicalszene auf der Neugeborenenstation etwa soll an die Revuefilme "Busby Berkeleys'' erinnern.

Das ist ein ziemlicher Verrat an einer Serie, die ihren jungen Fans einbleut, daß man mit acht Jahren bereits entschieden zu alt und vergreist ist, um noch richtigen Spaß am Leben haben zu können. Aber wahrscheinlich ist man heute auch schon im Alter von fünf medienerfahren genug, um sich über solch einen Betrug gar nicht mehr weiter aufzuregen.

"The Rugrats Movie", which introduces a new member of the Pickles family and eventually moves from the familiar city environment into the fairy tale forest, breaks with all basic conditions of the TV series. It spun out a long adventure instead of loud, small, everyday life stories. It refuses the constant transformation of the reality to the play material of the Rugrats fantasy and leaves its small adventurers instead into a relatively rigid world to meet threatening wolves in the fairy-tale forest. And in addition it fills the whole time with film references around grown-up amusement: a rather wet musical scene in the newborns' nursery, which reminds us of Busby Berkeley's revue films.

That is a considerable betrayal of a series, which blows into the heads of their young fans; those over 8 would've experienced too much fun. But this is too much for anyone over 5, in order not to excite itself over such a fraud any longer.

Variety (Joe Leydon)

Aimed squarely at moppets with miniscule attention spans, "The Rugrats Movie" is a fast and frenetic animated feature that should delight young afficionados of the long-running Nickelodeon series. Trouble is, pic lacks the cross-generational appeal of recent Disney-produced B.O. blockbusters (not to mention DreamWorks' "Antz") and may be against other family-oriented releases. However, after a respectable but unspectacular theatrical run, "Rugrats" will rake in the jack as a priced-for-purchase video release.

Siskel & Ebert

Recently, in their nationally-syndicated weekly TV program, the movie-reviewing duo gave "2 Thumbs Down" for The Rugrats Movie.

Here's what they had to say about it in their own newspaper columns:

Chicago Tribune  2 stars (Gene Siskel)

An underwhelming, big-screen adaptation of the hit Nickelodeon cable TV series about the ground-level adventures of the toddlers in the Pickles family, and their friends.

The wit of the screenplay begins -- and ends -- with the naming of the infant, Dylan, nicknamed Dil. Get it? Dil Pickles?

The little people have an adventure in the forest, but all they meet are some monkeys and a wolf.

Chicago Sun-Times (Roger Ebert; distributed by Universal Press Syndicate)

(Note: In review blurbs in some ads for the film, it quoted him saying, "Bright, cheerful, and fast-moving!" However, they fail to tell the whole story, as movie ads don't publish negative stuff about the film. Here's part of his actual review; read what he actually says about "bright, cheerful and fast-moving". -- SM)

...when Adam Sandler's The Waterboy grossed $76 million US in its first two weeks in release, all sorts of articles appeared that said that although critics hated it, they were "out of touch with the target audience."

The target audience for Rugrats is, I think, kids under 10.

Unlike ["Antz" and "A Bug's Life"], the movie makes little effort to appeal to anyone over that age. There is something admirable about that. Trying to liberate myself from my box of space and time, I travelled in my memory back to my 10th year to ask if I would have liked Rugrats. The answer was, no -- but when I was eight years old, I might have.

Is it bright, cheerful, colorful and fast-moving? Yes. Is it for me? No.

Would I recommend it to kids? Yeah, my guess is they would like it. I would also recommend it to those who liked The Waterboy, because Rugrats is the next step up the ladder of cinematic evolution.

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