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The Wild Thornberrys Movie (2002)

The Wild Thornberrys Movie


Average Rating: 6.6/10
Reviews Counted: 88
Fresh: 70
Rotten: 18

Critics Consensus: A pleasant enough kids flick that adults may even enjoy.

Average Rating: 6.7/10
Reviews Counted: 29
Fresh: 24
Rotten: 5

Critics Consensus: A pleasant enough kids flick that adults may even enjoy.


Average Rating: 2.8/5
User Ratings: 20,665


Movie Info

World-traveling documentary filmmakers Nigel and Marianne Thornberry have come to Africa with their family--precocious Eliza, rebellious Debbie and adopted wild child Donnie--to record a miraculous event. Once every few hundred years, as the moon obscures the sun, native legend has it that thousands of elephants emerge from the safety of the forest to watch the solar eclipse. But this time, as they stand exposed in this wide-open Congo valley, they will be in grave danger. Evil poachers Sloan … More

PG (for some adventure peril)
Animation , Kids & Family
Directed By:
Written By:
Kate Boutilier
In Theaters:
Apr 1, 2003
Box Office:
Paramount Pictures - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for The Wild Thornberrys Movie

All Critics (89) | Top Critics (29) | Fresh (70) | Rotten (18) | DVD (9)

Screenwriter Kate Boutilier provides plenty of sharp patter.

Full Review… | May 20, 2008
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

A decent soundtrack rounds off a surprisingly engaging and energetic little-kids' adventure.

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Too often feels like a glorified TV episode.

December 27, 2002
Fort Worth Star-Telegram/
Top Critic

An entertaining feature-length version of the Nickelodeon TV cartoon.

Full Review… | December 23, 2002
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic

Thumbs up for The Wild Thornberrys Movie.

Full Review… | December 23, 2002
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic

Doesn't do more than expand a TV show to movie length. However, it's pleasant enough and its ecological, pro-wildlife sentiments are certainly welcome.

December 20, 2002
Washington Post
Top Critic

Wholesome but also has kid appeal.

Full Review… | December 29, 2010
Common Sense Media

Splendid entertainment for the 8-12 age group and good fun for just about everyone else.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Urban Cinefile

Nickelodeon's animated explorer family runs into poachers in Africa in a sometimes-fun adventure that occasionally collapses into flat, savanna-like stretches.

Full Review… | August 7, 2008
Sacramento News & Review

The film's draughtsmanship is more than adequate, the voicing of the characters excellent, and the songs are way above average for such fare.

Full Review… | May 20, 2008
Observer [UK]


Full Review… | December 30, 2006
Empire Magazine

Great fun for animal lovers.

Full Review… | January 12, 2005

Amenable parents can watch this with the little ones instead of just using the DVD or VHS tape as a virtual nanny . . .

Full Review… | November 14, 2003

Adults will be bored into slumber, and even kids deserve something with a little more bite.

September 6, 2003
Las Vegas Weekly

It's a fun family safari chock full of environmental lessoning.

Full Review… | June 15, 2003
Boston Phoenix

Evokes a little of the fear that parents have for the possible futures of their children--and the sometimes bad choices mothers and fathers make in the interests of doing them good.

Full Review… | April 20, 2003
Film Freak Central

Pretty good half-term holiday fare.

Full Review… | March 25, 2003

It may not pull off any state-of-the art animation coups, but The Wild Thornberrys Movie understands that strong characters and involving storytelling are still the bottom line in a quality kids' film.

Full Review… | February 11, 2003

The animation may not be in the same class as The Lion King, but co-directors Jeff McGrath and Cathy Malkasian deserve praise for their attempts to render Africa's wildlife as authentically as possible.

Full Review… | January 29, 2003

This is thoroughly entertaining with an important message. And with its above-average animation it's also well worth seeing on a big screen.

Full Review… | January 16, 2003
Shadows on the Wall

One of the more intelligent children's movies to hit theaters this year.

Full Review… | January 10, 2003


Full Review… | January 6, 2003

Eliza repeatedly proves herself as an exemplary avatar of The Right Stuff. You go, girl!

January 6, 2003
San Francisco Examiner

The drumbeat behind the Thornberrys' energetic exploits may not be as explosive as its celebrated Disney counterpart The Lion King, but it certainly gives off a similar rhythmic radiance nevertheless.

Full Review… | January 5, 2003
Movie Eye

Audience Reviews for The Wild Thornberrys Movie

I loved this when I was a kid, but its only for people who know the show well like I did, but now its just an okay movie.

Jim Careter

Super Reviewer


a fantastic to screen adaptation of the TV show

michael e.
Michael Edwards

Super Reviewer


Just an overlong episode really. Contains nothing at all new accept a few of the voice cameos and a bigger budget. Some nice humour and family friendly action scenes though.

Luke Baldock

Super Reviewer

I loved this when I was a kid, but its only for people who know the show well like I did, but now its just an okay movie.

Bradley Wright
Bradley Wright

Super Reviewer

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