The Cat in the Hat (2003) Poster

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Two words: Guilty pleasure
scorzine18 October 2014
The Cat in the Hat is close to the dirtiest movie ever intended for kids, and it's also why there aren't any more live-action Dr. Seuss movies. But I'm afraid to say this... I actually liked it ever since I first watched it as a child and I still like it to this day. The core reason why is the dialogue, which is at times rude and stupid but still hilarious. My favorite part was The Mother of All Messes. The kids who played Conrad and Sally were great actors; I loved when they said "That's Mom's dress!" and Mike Myers did a great job as the Cat, too. Though I don't think the movie's something Seuss would be proud of and that it should be PG-13, I thought it was really funny, so I recommend it.
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I should've known better...
elispaul9 December 2003
Film critics of the world, I apologize. It is your job to give advice to the moviegoing public so that they can wisely choose what to spend money on. But I ignored your advice and I have been deeply hurt. However, my decision to see "The Cat in the Hat" wasn't made haphazardly. You see, three years ago all of you critics said that we should all avoid the "calamity" known as "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". Then some friends of mine took me to see it and it turned out to be a colorful, funny and almost hypnotic yuletide treat. So when the critics unleashed their fury against "The Cat in the Hat", another big budget Seuss update with a big name star in the title role, I thought that it must be the same old song. How wrong I was.

For five whole minutes I thought I was in the clear. The opening credits are clever, the kids are charming and the production values are top notch. Then the cat showed up. There are many problems from this point on, but the biggest one was the woeful miscasting of Mike Myers. Where "The Grinch" was saved by the inspired casting of Jim Carrey, "The Cat" was destroyed by Myers. He can be very funny when his energies are applied where they belong, comic sketches. Every movie he's made that was truly funny was really just a feature length comedy sketch, from "Wayne's World" to "Austin Powers". So he tries to do the same thing here, it's just that these comedy sketches are more like the stuff that they stick at the end of SNL, not funny, just painful. Not that the writers helped him out any. After the charming prologue the movie turns into an hour of repulsive bodily humor gags, poorly timed pratfalls and insultingly stunted attempts at hip humor. This movie was the most disheartening cinematic experience I have ever had. Period. So much talent and work went into something so vile. I know that the adult stars of this movie will be relatively unscathed by this mess, I just hope that the wonderful Spencer Breslin and Dakota Fanning will get more chances to show their charms in far better movies. If you are a parent, please avoid this like the plague. With movies like "Elf" and "Brother Bear" currently in theaters, you have far better choices.
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Give it a go, it's actually pretty good!
sparkinson9122 April 2014
This is one of my favourite films. I love it. It's a shame that it has received such harsh criticism and therefore isn't given a go by many.

I am aware that I seem to hold the opposite opinion to most, but I just feel it's fair for people to read an alternative view on this film. Many will disagree with what I have to say and that's fine, but I think this is worth reading anyway.

I understand the criticism for those who grew up with Dr Seuss and their expectations of this film would have been completely different – and therefore they were left utterly disappointed. However, if you are able to separate this film from your Dr Seuss expectations, it is actually a funny, clever and enjoyable film.

If you're not a fan of Mike Meyers, you probably would not be bothered to sit through this, however he is very funny in this part. The acting overall from the cast isn't the greatest but it does hold up for this film. Dakota Fanning is fantastic as usual and Alec Baldwin is a great inclusion here.

There are some brilliant lines in this film and the laughs are continuous. It's stupid and clever at the same time, not all the jokes are so obvious which appeals to an older audience. I agree, for kids it's not the most appropriate movie but they could still enjoy the silly side of it and the great visuals. For adults, I think it's a scream. I have recommended it to many (initially very hesitant to give it a go) who find themselves thoroughly enjoying it.

I think it really depends on the attitude you have going into watching this film that affects your final judgment of it. Go in with an open mind, understand that it's not going to be your typical child-friendly Dr Seuss story, it will be silly but it will also be very funny if you notice some of the subtle jokes they have included in it (for a more mature audience).

It's just a bit of fun and I wish people would not be so critical of it. Yes you may not love it, but you will laugh at at least a few things! Considering there is so much rubbish out there, I honestly think that this definitely isn't the worst of the worst and that those people that despise it would give it another go, removing those Dr Seuss expectations.

Be kind and try to enjoy this film, it deserves that.
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They should never have let this cat out of the bag.
Panner5526 December 2003
There is no way to avoid a comparison between The Cat in the Hat and The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, so let's get that part out of the way. First of all, let me start by saying that I think Grinch was an underrated and unappreciated film. Cat was... well, just awful.

Jim Carey was cast because he is a brilliant physical comedian, and fearlessly commits to over the top, outrageous characters. Mike Myers fell back on his old bag of tricks.

Why, why, why Mike Myers?? The kids could care less, and the Austin Powers demographic isn't going to spy this film. So, what was the studio thinking?

The Cat was also apparently related to Linda Richmond. Can we talk? Why a New York Accent? Not entirely consistent with anything Dr. Seuss has ever written. Myers was even allowed to sneak in his Scottish shtick. I wonder how many different voices the director and the studio tried to edit out of before they just gave in and said "as long as you don't say fahklempt', you can keep the accents." Meyers never seemed to find any sort of comfort, either with the costume, make-up, or dialogue.

The jokes, what few there were, were crude and age inappropriate. When Myers picks up a garden hoe and delivers to the camera: "dirty ho", everything but the rim shot was missing, and even that wouldn't have helped.

The same folks who created 'Whoville', clearly had a hand in the creation of the town and the houses in 'Cat'. The sets and props were very appealing, giving the viewer a much needed distraction from the bad writing, direction, and Myers.

There was some fun to be had with Alec Baldwin and Kelly Preston. Dakota Fanning was the only actor who seemed to be aware she was in a movie based on a Dr. Seuss classic, and stayed true to the genre.

Call the SPCA. This Cat should be neutered and never be allowed to reproduce again. Please, please, no sequel.
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Ripshin31 October 2004
For any forty-something pseudo-Boomer like myself, who grew up and learned how to read with the Seuss books, well, this film is an insult. There is NO way I'd let my kids watch this crude, stupid garbage. My jaw dropped scene, after scene, after scene. What Hollywood "suit" OK'd this thing? It is mean-spirited, raunchy and ugly. My little nephew started CRYING about thirty minutes into the film. Characters burp, curse, urinate, pick their nose, expose their posterior, etc.

I realize that young viewers don't understand the significance of Dr. Seuss, and the change his many children's books brought to the world of publishing.

This film is the antithesis of what he had in mind, and I am furious with his family for allowing this Hollywood monster to be unleashed.

PARENTS - don't let your kids think that this is what the Seuss universe is all them the books, and skip these LAME films. Or, show them the "Horton Hears a Who" animated classic from the 70s.

Universal & Dreamworks, you have a really ANGRY viewer. Stop allowing inexperienced PRODUCTION DESIGNERS to direct your big-budget films. You could have had a classic on your hands, but instead you have the honor of having spent millions on one of IMDb's "Bottom 100 Films."

One of the worst films I have ever seen.
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This is vile
mrtimlarabee24 March 2008
Children's movies of late are an interesting lot. They try to have kid appeal with non threatening plot and humor while trying to sneak in enough for adults to keep their attention while being dragged to the multiplex. Some of that type of humor is really clever and not so offensive that sharper kids who spot them won't be offended.

There is, however, a difference between smart humor and downright crude, vile humor. "The Cat in the Hat" falls in the latter category. This film is the most vicious sick form of kid's entertainment I've seen in years. I would have not watched if it weren't for the fact that it was playing at kid's pizza place that I was attending with a child at the time.

There are a number of scenes where the children just stare at the cat pulling off one crude gag after another. Bodily function humor abound, I'd have the same reaction. Then there are SO many other scenes that have coarse adult humor. No, it isn't sly innuendo, it's sick. The sad part is, it's not even funny. I watch a slew of animated films and if it's smart adult humor that goes over the head of the little ones, that's fine. But this is sick.

The plot is similar to the book. Seuss's words in the book are magical. The plot and message are simple. The kids fall prey to mischief - how do they clean up before mom gets home. How that gets screwed up is beyond me, but this film does it. Innocent mischief, this isn't.

While we're on the subject of inappropriate adult humor, let me point out that this film FEATURES PRODUCT PLACEMENT FOR AN ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE. Sickened yet? Try Mike Myer's insipid performance of the title character. This is vile and a miserable excuse for children's entertainment.
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Torture for the whole family
cash7666730 November 2003
This movie isn't entertaining. It's that simple. The jokes aren't funny, the acting by the main character is terrible. Dr. Seuss is spinning in his grave. The makers of this movie took a childrens book, threw in unnecessary sexual innuendo, and stuck it on a screen near you.

The movie plays itself out with joke-a-minute style. Unfortunately, none of the jokes are funny. Both the children's humor and the adult humor fails to please. Which brings up another point. Adult humor has no place in this movie. I have no problem with adult humor, but it shouldn't be in a Dr. Seuss movie. Not only was the adult humor unfunny, it did nothing more than cause confusion for the kids in the audience. Not to mention the explanations parents have to come up with when kids question the jokes.

Mike Myers is just bad in this movie. I had to go home and watch my collection of his movies and a few old Saturday Night Live episodes to reassure myself of his comedic ability. He completely failed to give the Cat a unique personality. If you're looking to see Myers perform half of his different SNL and movie characters in the period of an hour and a half, all while wearing a hideous cat suit, then watch this movie.

If you do get stuck seeing this atrocity, there are some redeeming points that will make it bearable for you. The sets are beautiful, almost a perfect rendition of what most people think a three-dimensional version of the Seuss universe would look like. Also, the performances of Dakota Fanning and Spencer Breslin are applaudable. Had they not been required to share the spotlight with that ungodly cat, the movie could've passed for good. Oh, and there's a scene where Myers is abused by a group of children, which provides some comic relief. Unfortunately, the Cat survives this incident to abuse the audience for another twenty minutes.

Avoid this movie if you can. Some parents will have to be dragged to it because their kids are more concerned with watching the Cat bounce around for 90 minutes than they are with seeing a good movie. Oh, to be young and naive again...
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save your time - don't watch this movie
jehu2330 January 2004
Without doubt, the single worst movie I have ever seen. How talented people couldn't see the disaster awaiting them is beyond me. If you want to see Alec Baldwin in a better role, try The Cooler, State and Main, The Edge or Miami Blues. Mike Myers is wasted - there is literally only one laugh in this whole movie.
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jeev788210 December 2003
Inappropriate. The PG rating that this movie gets is yet another huge misstep by the MPAA. Whale Rider gets a PG-13 but this movie gets a PG? Please. Parents don't be fooled, taking an elementary school child to this movie is a huge mistake. There were numerous times I found myself being uncomfortable not just because the humor was inappropriate for kids, but also because it was totally out of the blue and unnecessary.

But all that aside, The Cat in the Hat is still a terrible movie. The casting and overall look of the movie are the only saving graces. The beautiful Kelly Preston and the always likeable (or hateable in this case) Alec Baldwin are both good in their roles even though Preston is almost too beautiful for a role like this. The kids are conditioned actors and it shows, especially with Dakota Fanning. Fanning is the only human aspect of the film that kept me watching and not throwing things at the screen.

Did I mention there was an oversized talking cat in this movie? Mike Myers is absolutely deplorable. I didn't like him as the voice of Shrek, and I truly believe now that Myers should not be allowed near the realm of children's films ever again. His portrayal of The Cat is a slightly toned down version of Fat Bastard and Austin Powers.

In the end, the cat should not have come, he should have stayed away, but he came, even if just for a day, he ruined 82 minutes of my life, 82 minutes of personal anger and strife.

The Cat in the Hat may be the worst kids movie ever.
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Crap in a Hat
ralphies9 December 2003
If you liked the Grinch movie... go watch that again, because this was no where near as good a Seussian movie translation. Mike Myers' Cat is probably the most annoying character to "grace" the screen in recent times. His voice/accent is terrible and he laughs at his own jokes with an awful weasing sound, which is about the only laughing I heard at the theater. Not even the kids liked this one folks, and kids laugh at anything now. Save your money and go see Looney Tunes: Back in Action if you're really looking for a fun holiday family movie.
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For People Who Don't Get Dr. Seuss
lizryan-114 March 2005
This movie was physically painful to sit through, maybe because (like many people my age, and younger) I grew up with Dr. Seuss and loved his books - funny, clever, whimsical and subversive at the same time. "The Cat in the Hat" sucks all of the interest and spark out of the story, and Mike Myer's performance as the Cat is mostly bewildering. Why the Borscht Belt accent, the unfunny patter, the inappropriate jokes, the charmless costume? I had to go back and re-read the books to see the real problem: the books are SIMPLE. This movie is OVERBLOWN and way, way too long.

You don't expect every kids' movie to be Toy Story or The Iron Giant, but this one set a new low. How could Mike Myers need the money?
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Waste of time!
gaiafaye2 January 2006
The only good thing about this unfunny dreck is that I didn't have to pay for it. I saw it for free at college. And if a college student can't find humor in something that was free, it's hopeless.

Stale acting and poor jokes cannot be masked by an excellent, yet bewildering set design (that goes out of its way to market Volkswagon Beetles). I don't know what Michaels Myers was doing in this movie, but I have never seen anything more depressing. This was nothing more than a blatant effort to capitalize on the previous success of the Grinch (which has its opponents, but I enjoyed it very much). It's difficult not to sit through this failure and wonder what better projects were passed over to fund it.

You want a funny Seuss adaptation? Go with the Grinch.
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Not appropriate for children!
frankkminek3 December 2003
As huge Dr. Suess fans, my three children (ages 10, 7 and 4) and I were excited about the new Cat In The Hat movie.

But that excitement evaporated when to my utter amazement I heard these phrases spoken by the Cat:

"Son-of-a-b**** <bleep>!"

"That chaps my a** <bleep>!"

"You dirty ho!"

Can you imagine? A Suess character, let alone the Cat, saying these things? These phrases were the first ones repeated by my children when my wife asked them how they liked the movie!

As for me, I thought the movie was boring and unfunny, especially Mike Meyers as the Cat. I found it too easy to imagine Meyers himself, or Austin Powers, wearing a Cat suit for a comedy skit.

I sat there with my three kids, We sat there for this movie. But the Cat started to swear, And then I felt kinda woozy.

Do not take your children to see this tripe. Take them to see 'Elf', a good movie of a better type.
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Love it!!!! I am amazed by this film
Rhysdavies19978 April 2014
I don't know why people are critical about this film, but i get why. The story is amazing and so are the actors. Mike Myers put in his best performance to date, and I love it. So does my 2 year old daughter, Who shall not be named u perverts!! Anyway i just have to say a big thank you to Josh for introducing me to this spectacle. If I ever saw this film on a shelf, I would buy it if it was under £3. I would even choose it over Avatar, the hunger games and game of thrones, but not The Walking Dead, that is amazing. I love the bit when Rick is looking for Sophia and his son gets shot and other stuff happens and then they find Sophia in the barn and Rick shoots her
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Holds the distinct honor of being one of two movies in the theater I've ever walked out on.
Nevermind1022 May 2005
Don't get me wrong, I assumed this movie would be stupid, I honestly did, I gave it an incredibly low standard to meet. The only reason I even saw it was because there were a bunch of girls going (different story for a different time). As I began watching I noticed something, this film was terrible. Now there are two types of terrible, there's Freddy vs. Jason terrible, where you and your friends sit back and laugh and joke about how terrible it is, and then there is a movie like this. The Cat in The Hat failed to create even a momentary interest in me. As I watched the first bit of it not only was I bored senseless, but I felt as though I had in some way been violated by the horrendousness of said movie. Mike Myers is usually brilliant, I love the majority of his work, but something in this movie didn't click. One of the things that the director/producers/writers/whatevers changed was that they refused to use any of the colors of the original book (red, black, white) on any character but the Cat. Coincidentally or not, they also refused to capture any of the original (and i hate to use this word, but it fits) zaniness of the original. The book was like an Ice Cream Sunday, colorful and delicious, and the movie was about as bland and hard to swallow as sawdust.

Avoid this like a leprous prostitute.
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One of the stupidest movies I have ever seen
msawye0110 March 2006
I give this movie one star because IMDb won't let me select zero stars.

This movie is obviously marketed toward children. As such, it should have humor appropriate for kids. This has some slapstick, but the BAs, swearing and semi-swearing, double etendres, and innuendo have no place in it. If my kids were street-wise prostitute punks, they would get the jokes. But my kids are good kids, and the humor went over their heads. However, if you want to take your kids to a movie where the main character actually talks about cutting off a cat's balls (yes, in that same language), then this is for you. If you want to see the Cat in the Hat have a pseudo erection at looking at a centerfold spread of the kids' mom, then this is for you.

Terrible dialog, terrible lead acting by Mike Myers, terrible script, EXTREMELY bland camera work (the whole thing could have been filmed on a tripod), color and scene design that was good in theory, but in practice just doesn't work... it just goes on and on.

It's just beyond me how something like this can get green-lit. I've watched straight-to-video Land Before Time movies with better pacing, acting, and humor.

And I only registered on IMDb for this review, to help draw down the absurd 3-star rating this film got to some lower number. Just doing my part for justice in this world.
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Awful, One of the Worst Films I Have Ever Seen
OriginalMovieBuff212 October 2004
The Cat in the Hat is just a slap in the face film. Mike Myers as The Cat in the Hat is downright not funny and Mike Myers could not have been any worse. This is his worst film he has ever been in. The acting and the story was just terrible. I mean how could they make the most beloved stories by Dr. Seuss be made into film and being one of the worst films of all-time and such a disappointment. I couldn't have seen a more worst film than this besides, maybe Baby Geniuses. But this film is just so bad I can't even describe how badly they made this film. Bo Welch should be fired or the writer should.

Hedeen's outlook: 0/10 No Stars F
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Shame on these people
regrunion22 November 2003
Audrey, I know you truly cherish your husband Ted's memory but PLEASE do his legacy justice and heed his wishes. Dr. Seuss refused to license his characters during his lifetime for a very good reason. We beg of you to please stop cashing in on his stories, images, fantasies and characters. They are getting disemboweled by the powers that be of Hollywood and Broadway. The children of tomorrow will be stuck with these histrionic and grotesque interpretations that will forever pollute the loving warmth and innocence of his books.

It is indeed your property to do with as you wish. I just wish you would listen to the advice of others for a little while. Save what is left of Dr. Seuss. Thank you.
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Razzie Worthy...Can't Wait Till "Green Eggs and Ham" (I'm being sarcastic)
James12 February 2004
Bad. Bad. Bad. Those three lines sum up this crappy little film that can only attract idiot children and their parents to the cinema. and its... #1 Movie in America! What is this country thinking? Mike Myers looking more like Micheal Jackson. Some Chineese lady that falls asleep within 3 minutes. A lame plot with dirty jokes. It's grotesuque and awful. When Green-Eggs and Ham comes out in 2005 I'll be so happy! (not) Eddie Murphy and Tracy Morgan will probably play two hipsters trying to find the lost Green-Eggs and Ham. They'll try to chase Sam-I-Am and that mean guy who are running away with it. (I hope they don't ruin the classic book.) Don't waste time and money by seeing this.
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I want my money back.
bourdan23 December 2003
Mean spirited, and down right degrading adaptation to the classic children's tale not only lacks the charm of its forefather but lacks any talent what so ever. Mike Myers should not only be ashamed of himself for his horrible performance that is a clear rip off of what Jim Carrey did but he should give up acting all together. He is so annoying that you would want to beat the crap out of him if you were able to jump right in the film. The sets are ugly and the cinematography is very poor. I have seen a lot of bad film this year, but this not only takes the cake but it is with out a doubt one the worst films ever made.
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An insult to the memory of Dr. Seuss
drdave8 December 2003
This horrible butchering of a wonderful book was not worth price of the free passes I had to see it. Note to Hollywood: you can not improve upon perfection. If you are not going to be faithful the the original (as was the 1960's Grinch cartoon), then don't bother. Below is my critique for the true Seuss fan. Note that each sentence below should start on a new line, but I could force the IMDB software to format that way :-(

It stunk at the beginning. It stunk at the end. It stunk in the middle - I'm warning you, friend. It stunk in the day and it stunk in the night. Any way you look at it this movie's not right.

Ignore the movie and read the book. Walk out of the theater, don't give it a look. Go straightaway home, as fast as you can, by car or by bus or by train or by van. Avoid this abomination or you will be sad. Enjoy the original and you will be glad.
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Is this for children?
Tom Grosso24 February 2004
Well the previews looked funny and I usually don't go to movies on opening night especially with my kids because ......well you never know. Here is a movie that doesn't appeal either to children or adults as the jokes are too perverse for children and falls completely flat for entertainment purposes for adults. I was actually embarrassed to be with my 9 and 6 year old and having to explain to my 6 year old what S H * T spells. Essentially what happens here is a total twisting of Dr. Seuss's classic. It adds an evil and lazy neighbor who wants to marry the children's mother for her money. If that was a subplot, then maybe that would have been fine but it ends up being the major plot around the whole movie and "the cat" plays more of a subplot role in exposing the neighbor to the mom for who he really is. Take my advice and read the book and pass on the movie.
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Charles McGrew26 April 2004
A fine children's story of magic and fun is turned into a lamebrained attempt at a 'modern' tale, complete with useless extra plot points and characters. Every 5 minutes or so I found myself saying "What were they *thinking*?" in that kind of bored tone I normally use for infomercials (of which, of course, there is one in the movie.) What were they thinking when they included Alec Baldwin in this thing? What were they thinking with the whole Hooberdooberlooberwhateveritwas subplot? And most importantly, what are they thinking of now, and how can I avoid the product of that thinking? Give this one a wide berth - its a turkey.
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I don't like adult humor in kids movies as this movie does.
s-vonessen20 March 2004
This movie has made me upset! When I think of Cat in the hat. Im thinking of cat in the hat books. You know, the one from a few years back that parents read to thier children. Well, I though that this movie would be a lot like that! But much to my suprise was nothing like the books! Insted it is more like young adult humor movie. In one part cat is talking to a gardening tool (hoe) cat talks to it like it is his hoe (agin adult humor). the naming of his car I all so though was a little untastful for a kids movie. under the rating you'll find: mild cude humor and some double-entendres. I think in short this means adult humor. I wish I could return this movie! wal-mart said they wouldn't because the movie has been opened. If you are thinking about buying this I suggest that maybe rent before you buy.
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Good - but not suitable for younger children!
i_am_here14 March 2004
As an adult who has never read any Dr Seuss stories I found this enjoyable and entertaining. The unusual visualisations were especially well done.

The only thing wrong with this movie is it's marketing as a children's film. I do not think it is appropriate for younger children. I know many kids are subjected to similar material in every day life but there is no need to reinforce it and further legitimise it. However, I would imagine that many children would enjoy this, simply because of it's risque nature.

Beware that some of the outtakes and deleted scenes on the well produced DVD are even more extreme than those that made it into the feature!

This film does not deserve it's low rating - it is much better than that!
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