Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that film includes some scenes where the lion cub is frightened by noises, darkness, and a storm at sea. The primary villains are hostile, shadowy wildebeests who perform "African" ritual dances and chants, with comic choreography, and announce an intention to seize power by becoming "predators" and "carnivores." Their efforts to eat the other characters lead to a conflict. The wildebeests live in a volcano cave, so lighting is red and fiery; eventually the volcano explodes and the friends barely escape (some tension created). A squirrel with a crush on a female giraffe makes a couple of sexual references (he rides a goose "bareback" and uses this moment to make a sexual advance toward her; he considers his size in comparison to the giraffe). The father lion lies to his son about his own past, and must eventually confess and be forgiven. Characters are stereotyped by nationality or ethnicity: a Canadian goose says "Eh"; an "East Indian" pigeon speaks with accent and dances as if in a Bollywood movie; a British koala bear is snobbish.
Squirrel with crush on giraffe kisses her ("Your daily dose of Vitamin Benny," which she repeats at film's end), makes "romantic" remarks (slaps his own butt and says he rides a goose "bareback.")
Vultures loom over heroes from tree branches and swoop down; wildebeests are frightening (mechanical/dream version has red eyes and steamy breath); wildebeest attacks accompanied by heavy music; when lion cub is shipped off in container, he's afraid and screams for dad; lion slaps pigeons to get information; garbage truck almost squishes giraffe inside; fierce, foaming-at-the-mouth dog pack menaces heroes (koala hits them with toy torch); shadowy alligators briefly scary in sewer; storm at sea is briefly scary; lion threatens to eat hyrax; hippo tries to squash lion cub; father lion fights off wildebeests with huge roar; volcano blows up at end, injuring the chief wildebeest.
Some phrases might catch children's attention ("I've got popcorn up my bum," "olfactory insult").
Father learns his lifetime of lying to son is not good; son learns to appreciate father; all the animal friends pull together to rescue the cub; the wildebeests, however, are scary soldiers and thugs until the very end. Some stereotypes.
Passing through Times Square, animals see array of product names, including McDonalds, Quaker Oats, Toys R Us, Kodak, TiVo; koala bear and lion are marketed by zoo (via stuffed toys and billboards).
Drugs / Tobacco /