Welcome to Smelliville (The Ogglies)

image for Welcome to Smelliville (The Ogglies)

Short takes

Not suitable under 5; parental guidance to 8 (concerning role modelling, some peril, threat, and mild cartoon violence, substance use, mild coarse language)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Welcome to Smelliville (The Ogglies)
  • a review of Welcome to Smelliville (The Ogglies) completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 8 November 2021.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 5 Not suitable due to concerning role modelling (eating/drinking dangerous / poisonous substances; lying to parents; dangerous behaviour, e.g. children riding bikes while on a smart phone), some peril, threat, and mild cartoon violence, substance use, and mild coarse language.
Children aged 5–8 Parental guidance recommended due to concerning role modelling (e.g. eating/drinking dangerous/poisonous substances; lying to parents; dangerous behaviour, e.g. children riding bikes while on a smart phone), some peril, threat, and mild cartoon violence, substance use, and mild coarse language.
Children over the age of 8 Ok for this age group.

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: Welcome to Smelliville (The Ogglies)
Classification: PG
Consumer advice lines: Mild crude humour and coarse language
Length: 85 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

The idyllic little town of Smelliville has a problem: a big rubbish dump on the edge of town that stinks so bad that no tourist wants to visit, and even its residents avoid stepping outside because of the stench. The Mayor’s wife (Tracey Grey), however, thinks that she knows a way out of the mess: she approves construction tycoon Mr Hammer’s (Tom Zahner) plan to build a Wellness Temple in place of the dump. Little does she know that there are two problems: Mr Hammer is a ruthless crook only interested in his own profit, and the dump has new residents – the Ogglies, friendly little green creatures that feast on rubbish. And it’s the Mayor’s son Max (Ben Young) and his best friend Lotta (Lily Held) who are determined to save the Ogglies from having to move again, and to educate the town about the benefits of recycling waste.

Themesinfo

Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.

Animated movie; Based on children’s book series; Comedy and Adventure; Recycling.

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 mild cartoon violence in this movie, including:

  • People have rubbish thrown at them.
  • Mr Hammer’s henchmen intrude into and vandalise the Ogglies’ dwelling in order to intimidate the Ogglies and make them leave.
  • Mr Hammer threatens to run over the Mayoress with a digger.
  • Mr Hammer holds Max captive and ties him up in a van.
  • Mr Hammer plans to blow up the dump with no concern of its inhabitants, the Ogglies.

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.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children under the age of five, including the following:

  • The Mayoress drinks a potion and turns into an Oggly.

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.

  • Nothing further of concern.

Product placement

  • None noted.

Sexual references

  • None noted.

Nudity and sexual activity

  • None noted.

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in this movie, including:

  • Max’s mother, the Mayoress, appears addicted to ‘Anti Stress Drops’. She gulps them down on numerous occasions when she feels stressed, and she is upset and anxious when she runs out. She secretly obtains the drops from a scientist’s lab, which makes them resemble very much an illegal drug.
    • This is definitely something parents will want to address with their children.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Damn
  • Darn
  • Nutcase
  • Rotten rat.

In a nutshell

(The Ogglies) Welcome to Smelliville is an animated, family movie based on German author Erhard Dietl’s book series. Young children will likely respond but might also be challenged by the massive amount of toilet/gross-out humour, involving stench, dirt, burping, and farting. There are positive messages regarding empathy for and inclusion of outsiders, calling out ruthless capitalism, and recycling waste in an effort to help the environment. There are, however, several behaviours on display that are concerning, like primary school aged children lying to and tricking their parents, including sneaking out, breaking into places, stealing things, or reckless bike riding while fiddling with a smart phone; characters consuming toxic substances (to be fair, that’s a main point of the story that the Ogglies’ diet consists of  rubbish, and there is an awkward attempt of warning in form of a pigeon saying, “Kids, don’t try this at home – only Ogglies can eat that stuff!”, after an Oggly sculls a bottle of chain oil), and, most concerning, Max’s mum’s dependency on some designer drug. There is also a random mix of accents ranging from posh British to broad American, and bizarrely characters from within one family have different accents which is a tad strange. Some of the above-mentioned aspects make the film unsuitable for a very young audience and warrant parental guidance for a preschool and young primary school-aged audience.

The main messages from this movie are that everyone deserves a chance and that it’s important to try and see the world through other people’s eyes.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • Open-mindedness, tolerance and acceptance.
  • Perspective-taking (seeing the world through someone else’s eyes / walking a mile in their shoes).
  • Friendship & teamwork.
  • Resourcefulness.
  • Recycling waste.

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children the importance of:

  • Being mindful of the benefits but also traps and downsides of modern technology: there are several scenes hinting at the downfalls, for example a mother who is totally absorbed in playing a game on her phone rather than paying attention to her child; Max using his phone/tablet to trick his parents and do things he isn’t supposed to do; kids putting themselves and others in danger by recklessly riding their bikes while fiddling with their phone.
  • Parents finding the right balance of supporting their children’s learning and introducing them to different activities without smothering them, and also respecting and acknowledging their children’s interests and talents.