Australian Council on Children and the Media

Herbie Fully Loaded

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Short takes

Under 5s may be bored

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Herbie Fully Loaded
  • a review of Herbie Fully Loaded completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 23 June 2005.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 8 While there is nothing particularly inappropriate in this movie, children under the age of eight may find it boring.
Children over the age of 8 Okay with or without parental guidance

About the movie

This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines.

Name of movie: Herbie Fully Loaded
Classification: G
Consumer advice lines: None
Length 98 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Herbie is a 1963 Volkswagen Beetle that was formerly a champion-racing car. After his racing career went downhill, Herbie ended up on the scrap heap in Crazy Dave’s car yard. About to be crushed into scrap metal, Herbie’s ‘life’ is saved by Maggie Peyton (Lindsay Lohan). Maggie, granddaughter of former champion racing driver Jack Peyton and the youngest daughter in a family of racing car drivers, aspires to become the first female racing champion.

Maggie reluctantly selects Herbie as a graduation present from her father (Michael Keaton), but when she takes Herbie for her first drive, she soon realises this is no ordinary car. With a mind of his own, Herbie drives to the Hot Rod Motor Show where, after intentionally scratching champion driver Trip Murphy’s (Matt Dillon) car, he is challenged to a street race in which he defeats the champion. A humiliated Trip seeks revenge on Herbie and asks for a rematch, with a grand prize of $10,000 on offer. As Maggie’s father does not like her racing and won’t let her do it, she goes behind his back and disguises herself to enter the race.

Maggie loses Herbie and finds that she must work to gain Herbie’s trust once again, including saving him from being destroyed in a monster truck demolition derby. She and Herbie work together as a team, to challenge the current racing car champion, and try to win over her father’s support.

Use of violenceinfo

Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.

Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.

There is some violence in this movie, all of which is set in a comic context:

  • Herbie tries to escape the car yard and drives off, dragging the car yard owner on the ground behind him
  • One of Herbie’s hubcaps flies off and hits the car yard owner in the head.
  • The mechanic trips on his roller-board, falls on his back and hits his head on his toolbox.
  • While Trip Murphy is poking around Herbie’s engine, Herbie shuts his boot on Trip’s head.
  • Trip hits Herbie with a crowbar, so Herbie opens his bonnet and knocks Trip on his back.
  • Demolition derby cars batter Herbie.

 

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

Children in this age bracket may be concerned by the crane or the Monster Truck threatening to crush Herbie. They may also be bored by some of the movie’s content.

Aged five to eightinfo

Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.

Younger children in this age group may also be scared or disturbed by the scenes mentioned above.

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.

Children in this age group are unlikely to be scared by this movie.

Over thirteeninfo

Children over the age of thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic physical harm or threats, molestation or sexual assault and / or threats from aliens or the occult.

Children in this age group are unlikely to be scared by this movie.

Product placement

The following products were displayed or used in this movie:

  • Pepsi
  • Goodyear
  • Cheetos
  • Valvoline

 

Sexual references

The only sexual reference is that one of the racing cars is sponsored by Viagra, which appears on the screen for a few moments.

Nudity and sexual activity

None of concern.

Use of substances

None of concern.

Coarse language

There is occasional use of ‘oh my God’.

In a nutshell

This movie’s purpose is simply to entertain, and as such, has no take home message. Values parents may wish to encourage include loyalty, honesty and friendship.

Parents could discuss with their children that the behaviours of lying, betrayal and ignoring parents’ wishes could be at variance with their own family’s values, and what the real life consequences of these behaviours can sometimes be.

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