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Happy Feet (2006)

PG  |   |  Animation, Comedy, Family  |  17 November 2006 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 120,131 users   Metascore: 77/100
Reviews: 544 user | 205 critic | 30 from

Into the world of the Emperor Penguins, who find their soul mates through song, a penguin is born who cannot sing. But he can tap dance something fierce!

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 18 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Nestor (voice)
Raul (voice)
Rinaldo (voice) (as Jeff Garcia)
Lombardo (voice) (as Johnny Sanchez III)
Ramon / Lovelace (voice)
Mumble (voice)
Gloria (voice)
Memphis (voice)
Norma Jean (voice)
Noah the Elder (voice)
Baby Mumble (voice) (as E.G. Daily)
Miss Viola (voice)
Mrs. Astrakhan (voice)
Seymour (voice)
Baby Gloria (voice)


This is the story of a little penguin named Mumble who has a terrible singing voice and later discovers he has no Heartsong. However, Mumble has an astute talent for something that none of the penguins had ever seen before: tap dancing. Though Mumble's mom, Norma Jean, thinks this little habit is cute, his dad, Memphis, says it "just ain't penguin." Besides, they both know that, without a Heartsong, Mumble may never find true love. As fate would have it, his one friend, Gloria, happens to be the best singer around. Mumble and Gloria have a connection from the moment they hatch, but she struggles with his strange "hippity- hoppity" ways. Mumble is just too different--especially for Noah the Elder, the stern leader of Emperor Land, who ultimately casts him out of the community. Away from home for the first time, Mumble meets a posse of decidedly un-Emperor-like penguins--the Adelie Amigos. Led by Ramon, the Adelies instantly embrace Mumble's cool dance moves and invite him to party with... Written by Anthony Pereyra <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Put on your happy feet. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some mild peril and rude humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

17 November 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Happy Feet: The IMAX Experience  »

Box Office


$100,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$41,533,432 (USA) (17 November 2006)


$197,992,827 (USA) (4 May 2007)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(8 channels)| |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Norma Jean and Memphis are obviously named for Marilyn Monroe (who was born Norma Jean Mortensen) and Elvis Presley (who lived in Memphis, Tennessee). Their voices and mannerisms are imitations. See more »


In the scene where Mumble is born, Memphis says "woah" a little bit before Mumble's foot actually comes out of the egg. See more »


[first lines]
Penguin #1: [singing] Once there was a way to get back homeward.
Penguin #2: [singing] Are the stars out tonight?
Penguin #1: [singing] Once there was a way to get back home.
Penguin #2: [singing] I only have eyes for you.
Penguin #1: [singing] Sleep, pretty darling, do not cry.
Penguin #2: [singing] For you.
Penguin #1: [singing] And I will sing a lullaby.
Penguin #3: [singing] With a song in my heart.
Penguin #4: [singing] So tell me / Tell me something good / Yeah, yeah, yeah / Tell me that you love me. / Tell me, baby. / Tell me something good.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Mumble, Gloria, Memphis, Norma Jean, Noah, Ramón, Lovelace, Mrs. Astrakhan and a baby penguin can be seen tap dancing under the credits while Song of the Heart by Prince is playing. See more »


Referenced in Mad: Lukewarm Bodies/Does Someone Have to GOa? (2013) See more »


Hit Me Up
Written by KNS Productions and Gia Farrell
Published by Zomba Songs / Keirulf Songs / Mugsy Boy Publishing / J.Bo & Co. Music Publishing
Produced by Brian Kierulf (as Brian) & Josh Schwartz (as Josh) for KNS Productions, Inc.
Performed by Gia Farrell
Courtesy of Atlantic Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Feets don't fail me now!
19 November 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Happy Feet, directed by the man who gave us both Babe: Pig in the City and Mad Max, is just the kind of feel-good animated film that works on a few different levels; it'll make you laugh, it'll make you cry, and it'll inevitably, unquestionably, make you tap your toes or bounce your leg, right there in the theater. It's charming and exquisitely detailed, and it succeeds where it really counts: It makes you really feel for the lovable lead penguin, Mumble (voiced by Elijah Wood).

Mumble is an unfortunate penguin, you see, because was born with no singing ability, and in his penguin tribe one attracts a mate through the use of song. The poor flightless bird can only look on helplessly as his fellow hatchlings croon their little hearts out. Amazingly, though, Mumble can tap dance, a big no-no in the penguin community. Soon, with no heart song to guide him, Mumble isn't permitted to graduate from school, to the chagrin of his Elvis-like dad (Hugh Jackman) and his songbird-like mom (Nicole Kidman).

Mumble heart belongs to the best singer in his age group, Gloria (Brittany Murphy), but without the gift of song he can't hope to woo her. Worse, with the penguins' food supply running out, some of the other birds begin to blame Mumble's foot-tapping, that somehow he is angering the great god Guin. The sad-sack penguin is then drummed out of the penguin corps, shunned for his lack of song and strength of feet, and he runs into another penguin colony, one that uses pebbles to woo their females instead of song, and makes new friends - a Latino-sounding quartet that's high on life, full of zest and pizazz and charisma, everything that Mumble's old group isn't.

Then Mumble hears from some predator birds of mysterious "aliens" who probe and attach tags to their victims. Mumble thinks these aliens might have something to do with the lack of fishies for everyone to munch on, so he and his new pals head off on a Quest to find these aliens and ask them to stop stealing all the fish.

Some of the scenes are beautifully imagined, including attacks by sea lions (quite harrowing, actually, until its denouement), vultures, and killer whales, not to mention every time Mumble and/or his posse leap off a cliff and slide down the side like avian sleds. Or through ice tunnels. Or through the water itself, shooting like streaming jetliners with mile-long contrails. Gorgeous animation.

At its heart, the movie is about how it's okay to Be Different. It's about how older folks sometimes hold prejudices that are as illogical as they are insulting, and how they'll often pass along those prejudices to their children, sometimes through direct actions and sometimes by dint of their inaction when wrongs are being perpetuated.

Robin Williams takes on four roles in this movie: the Narrator (where he's excellent and not at all hammy), Ramon and Cletus (two of the feisty new penguins), and Lovelace, a self-professed penguin guru to whom penguins go to have their problems solved. On the one hand, Williams is delightful doing what he does best, improvising rapid-fire comic patter to get laughs; on the other hand, he's Robin Williams, and although there are differences between his voice characterizations, they all bear a strong resemblance to one another. As with most animated films, the movie is well-cast; Jackman is particular has an appealing Southern drawl (ironically, he and Kidman are Aussies playing penguins with southern accents).

In the wake of the phenomenal, surprise success of March of the Penguins, Happy Feet makes your heart soar from start to finish. It'll be very difficult not to shed a tear at the mistreatment of Mumble by his peers and his elders, and it'll be near impossible to thoroughly enjoy this dazzling animated offering.

113 of 174 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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