Box art for The Smurfs

The Smurfs

anime & animation, children & family, comedy

When the evil wizard Gargamel chases the tiny blue Smurfs out of their village, they tumble from their magical world and into ours -- in fact, smack dab in the middle of Central Park. Just three apples high and stuck in the Big Apple.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 6
3 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
0 out of 5
Educational value
1 out of 5
2 out of 5
Positive messages
3 out of 5
Positive role models
3 out of 5
Sexy Stuff
1 out of 5
Violence & scariness
2 out of 5

Not enough bright spots in disappointing adaptation.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that although there's nothing overtly upsetting in this adaptation of the beloved childhood cartoon, you can expect some potty-type humor and some cartoonishly violent scenes involving bad guy Gargamel and his cat Azrael. But no one is ever seriously hurt, and the Smurfs always triumph. The word "smurf" is used often as a substitute for other words, including, on occasion, curse words -- i.e. "smurf off!" or "smurf me." Many brands are featured in the movie (usually if they have the word "blue" in them), as well as electronics and toy companies. While kids might pick up a few messages about positive teamwork and self-confidence, chances are they'll probably just laugh at the goofy pratfalls and jokes.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the appeal of remaking old cartoons into movies. Do you think the goal is to share the cartoons with a new generation or to appeal to grown-ups who remember the cartoons from their own youth?
  • What are the movie's messages? What do the characters learn over the course of the film?
  • If you've seen the old TV show, how does the movie compare? Do the characters seem the same?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

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    reviews counted: 0
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Audience Reviews

1 star

Once again Hollywood decides to extinguish anything creative about a franchise, and simply set it in our world. The Smurfs have a rich history, but here they are just fish out of water in New York. Yes, you have seen this film before. What's most annoying is that it starts promising. In the land of the Smurfs, with Gargamel even referring to the past by calling Smurfette a traitor, it seemed as though they would be faithful. This is soon dropped for terrible jokes, inexplicable pop culture references, and product placement. Sometimes they even combine all three. For example, The Smurfs hide next to an advertisement for The Blue Man Group, and later for Blu Ray Discs. HAHAHAHAHAHA Fucking HA. The pop culture jokes are just absurd. Sure, this is a kids film, so children are supposed to add up that Katy Perry is doing the voice of Smurfette and she just referenced one of her own songs. Are we supposed to think that these characters have seen Brokeback Mountain and Braveheart. It's great to see that Hollywood has a Scottish character that simply must yell out "Freedom". Braveheart is 15 years old for Christ's sake. It even has plot points that are suddenly dropped. Nothing comes of Gargamel de-ageing an elderly woman. Nor of him being in prison. He just gets out and wastes a few minutes of a lengthy running time. Neil Patrick Harris looks bored, but at least tries to insert some form of comedy. In the only decent parts of mixing our world with The Smurf's' he questions how they are named and why they continually use Smurf as a verb and an adjective. Stupid on all accounts. Though I did love Azrael and Azaria tried to do something with this tripe.

- kiriyamakazou, Saturday, December 10, 2011

1 star

The Smurfs........... first Scooby Doo, then Alvin and the Chipmunks, then Yogi Bear, and now they have made a CGI Live Action film of The Smurfs, and it stinks just as much as the others. In the beginning of the film, Narrator Smurf tells the audience about the Blue Moon Festival, where every Smurf prepares to sing the Smurf theme song, almost every Smurf. Gutsy Smurf and Grouchy Smurf tell Clumsy Smurf he's on the "Don't Not Let In" list because he is too accident prone. Meanwhile, Papa Smurf sees a vision, showing Clumsy with a dragon wand, the Smurfs in cages, and Gargamel having ultimate power. Worried that this may happen, Papa does not let Clumsy pick Smurf Roots. Refusing to listen, Clumsy does so anyway. Gargamel soon finds Clumsy and chases after him. Clumsy leads Gargamel into the hidden Smurf village, and Gargamel destroys it. Running from Gargamel, Clumsy accidentally goes the wrong way, and some of the other Smurfs go after him and leap into a magic portal and finally discover New York City. They take shelter with a young married couple (Patrick and Grace Winslow), who are expecting a baby. The Smurfs have to return to the Middle Ages and stop Gargamel. With the help of Patrick and Grace, the Smurfs eventually defeat Gargamel. The plot is directly aimed to be stupid enough for kids, its a total rip off of Enchanted, and in this film nothing happens, it's 1 hour and 30 minutes of Smurf jokes and watching Gargamel be an idiot. The CGI is actually pretty good, it captured the Smurfs look pretty good, so that was one good thing about the film. The acting is just for kids, cheesy and lame, but I must admit Neil Patrick Harris was pretty funny, he is a great comedian and he lives up to that even in this. Hank Azaria may have played a convincing Gargamel, but I think the writers were just trying to make us mad with how creepy and lame he is, he just annoyed me. Having Sofia Vergara in this was just a way to get a wider range of actors, and having her had no point to it at all. The voices of the Smurfs were mixed for me, because the voice artist were well picked all except for George Lopez, having him in it was one of the stupidest and most cliche choices for the film. The jokes sucked in this film, nothing but Smurf jokes like Holy Smurf or What the Smurf, I never laughed, chuckled, or even smiled at a joke, maybe its because im older, but its just not funny to me. Other than the CGI being great and Neil Patrick Harris, there is nothing likeable about this film and its just as worthless as last years Yogi Bear. If you loved this show as a child, prepare to have your childhood destroyed, because this is a terrible movie.

- DreamExtractor, Monday, January 2, 2012

2 stars

Just average to me. I liked the animation and the movie for the most part, but Neil Patrick Harris annoys the heck out of me, and there are some Smurfy characters I would have liked to have seen, or seen more of. The "Smurf droppings" line was memorable though, heh.

- stormyweather980, Thursday, January 12, 2012