95 user 29 critic
0:32 | Clip
A Chinese-Canadian woman suffering from empty nest syndrome gets a second shot at motherhood when one of her handmade dumplings comes alive.


Domee Shi


Domee Shi
Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 nominations. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Sindy Lau ... Mom
Daniel Kai Lin
Sharmaine Yeoh
Tim Zhang
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A Chinese-Canadian woman suffering from empty nest syndrome gets a second shot at motherhood when one of her handmade dumplings comes alive.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The setting was inspired by Toronto Canada. See more »


Touch tone telephones should have twelve buttons, but there are only the first nine buttons (1 to 9). See more »

Crazy Credits

Instead of the usual Pixar credit for "production babies" - babies born to people who worked on a given film during its production - there is a credit for "production baos". See more »


Referenced in AniMat's Crazy Cartoon Cast: Garfieldelodeon (2019) See more »

User Reviews

The emotions of motherhood
29 July 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Am a huge fan of Pixar, really liking to loving a vast majority of their feature films (the three 'Toy Story' films, 'Coco' and 'Inside Out' being my favourites, and the two 'Cars' sequels and 'The Good Dinosaur' being my least favourites). Also really like to love pretty much all their short films.

'Bao', which proceeded 'Incredibles 2', is not one of their best short films for me. It is not on the same level as 'Presto', 'One Man Band', 'Geri's Game', 'Piper', 'Knick Knack', 'For the Birds' and 'Luxo Jr', which had more imagination and resonated more with me. 'Bao' is still very good and much better than its controversial critical reception here says from humble personal opinion. Can definitely understand the criticisms directed against it, while finding that some of the negavity has gotten over-the-top mainly at a part that was over quite quickly. Very like how a few of the criticisms directed at 'Incredibles 2' has been blown out of proportion by some parents.

Will admit to being shocked by the aforementioned part, as was everybody in the auditorium, one woman crying out "that's awful" amidst dead silence. Didn't find it anywhere near as disturbing as has been described though, likening it to cannibalism is a bit strong.

Similarly, it wasn't obvious to me straightaway what the ending meant. Thinking about it and discussing it after 'Incredibles 2' ended, it became much clearer and it no longer became perplexing but instead strange but touching. Definitely one of the top 5 endings of a Pixar short film that stayed with me.

However, the animation is wonderful. Very bright and colourful with lot of striking background detail and character designs that definitely stand out comparing it with other Pixar short films. The music is whimsical and understated.

There is a lot of charm and sweetness, the little dumpling is adorable, and the emotional element is very poignant, the sentimentality didn't get too much and very true to Pixar. Managing to do that without saying anything at all, something that Pixar excels at frequently better than most. The relationship between the mother and the dumpling is very cute, touching and investable, a very strong reminder of what motherhood and bonds between mother and child are like. Many are likely to find themselves relating to a lot of the scenes depicting what the dumpling goes through, the stages of life and the mother's over-protection, being very true to real life and mother and child relationships and hobbies, struggles and life stages of real people.

As said, the ending lingers long in the memory, the story is slight but engaging and the mother is depicted very honestly. The setting is beautifully realised too.

Overall, not one of my favourites but there is a lot to like about this (to me) impressed and over-criticised charmer. 8/10 Bethany Cox

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Official Sites:

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Release Date:

15 June 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bao See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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