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Box Office Mom reviews Dolittle

Jackie Solberg shares her review of "Dolittle" from a parent's point of view.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Box Office Mom, Jackie Solberg, is back with what's new in theaters and giving you a parent's perspective on what you kids might be hoping to see. 

This week, Jackie is taking a look at the newest remake of "Dolittle" starring Robert Downey Jr.


  • Rating: 4 out of 5 buckets
  • Release Date: January 17, 2020
  • MPAA Rating: PG
  • Best Age Group: 8+
  • Sexual Content: None
  • Violent/Disturbing Content: Moderate
  • Crude or Profane Language: Mild
  • Drug and Alcohol Content: Mild
  • Will Kids Like It? Maybe

Wouldn't it be great to talk to your house pets? I wonder what my dog Joey would have to say... of course it's something only Dr. Dolittle would know. Dr. John Dolittle (Robert Downey Jr.) is a famous doctor and veterinarian for England's Queen Victoria. He secludes himself and becomes a hermit as he's sad and depressed after losing his wife seven years earlier. However, when he gets word that Queen Victoria is sick, Dolittle, and his group of talking animals, embark on a fascinating journey to find a cure for the Queen. Dolittle is based on the children's 1922 classic novel, The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle.

The film highlights the importance of helping others. Dr. Dolittle says, “It’s only by helping others that we can truly help ourselves.” This could spark a good parent/child conversation.

Sexual Content: None

Violent/Disturbing Content: 

  • A human is attacked by a tiger and bats.
  • Soldiers point guns at a boy.
  • A character holds a knife to his enemy's face.
  • A cannonball is fired at a boat filled with animals; we see the animals struggling to survive.
  • A teen jumps from a high bridge onto a passing ship.
  • There's the mature subject matter of death as the main character's grieves the wife's death.
  • A scary character threatens humans.

Crude or Profane Language: 

  • We hear "damn" and name calling such as "shut up."
  • There is potty humor focused on gas and butt jokes.

Drug and Alcohol Content:

  • Dolittle performs surgery on a wounded squirrel and uses a sleeping gas to knock out him out.

Will Kids Like It? Maybe

  • I got mixed reviews from kids in the theaters. An 8 year old boy thought it was boring, though his 5 year old sister liked it.

Overall this is a family friendly movie, though parents need to be aware of the moderate violent content. Depending on the child, Dolittle is appropriate for kids ages 8 and up.


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