Home Family Film Guide"Home" is the latest family-targeted adventure to pair a human kid with a friendly extraterrestrial. Like "E.T.," the big theme of the movie is finding your people. After the invasion of the color-changing aliens called the Boov, "Tip" Tucci (voiced by pop superstar Rihanna) teams up with a runaway loner Boov called "Oh" (Emmy winner Jim Parsons). She is trying to find her mom -- who was relocated along with all other humans to Australia -- while he is trying to find a friend. Together they race across the globe trying to avoid Boov security forces and make their way to Tip's mom.

Here are five issues to consider before taking your little one to see "Home."

1. Are you comfortable with bathroom humor?
Not every parent appreciates scatological humor, so if you adamantly oppose the idea of your kid laughing at and quoting jokes about number one, number two, and the Boov-specific "number three" (it's so momentous it takes a day to finish) this may not be a great pick for your family. As one critic observed, the movie can be "reduced to a series of skits, poo-poo, pee-pee jokes." I'm fine with my kids being exposed to silly humor, as long as they don't overly indulge in repeating the jokes at home.

2. How easily does your kid get scared?
There isn't a lot of violence in the movie, but there are still a few scenes of mild peril that scared toddlers in the screening I attended. A couple of kids started crying at the sight of the evil Gorg and the moment when it looks like one of the main characters had been crushed. Although the movie has the expected happily ever after, a couple of close calls might be too much for the preschool set.

3. Do you want kids to read it then see it?
It might not be obvious, but "Home" is the adaptation of the best-selling children's book "The True Meaning of Smekday," by Adam Rex. The book, like the movie, is also a roadtrip buddy comedy but with a lot more pop culture references that were edited out of the film. In fact, in the book the character of Oh is called "J. Lo," making the actress's casting in the movie an amusing Easter egg for book fans.

4. Who will enjoy the movie most?
The ideal audience is elementary-aged kids and tweens -- possibly teens if they still appreciate animated comedies, but mostly younger audiences. Rihanna's involvement should bring out her considerable fans, since she's not only the star but also a major musical contributor -- lending several songs, including original tunes, to the soundtrack. Lopez, who plays Rihanna's mother, also contributed a ballad to the catchy soundtrack.

5. What are critics saying about "Home"?
The animated adventure gets mixed reviews, with a (rotten) 43 percent at Rotten Tomatoes and a mixed score of 52 at Metacritic. One of the most positive reviews is from New York Times critic Neil Genzlinger who called it: "A charming concoction with positive messages for younger children about conquering fears, understanding outsiders and knowing yourself." Claudia Puig of USA Today praised the multicultural cast: "Key characters are admirably diverse, but the fast-paced tale is thoroughly predictable." Home - Trailer No. 1

Home
PG2015
Based on 31 critics

After an alien race called the Boov take over Earth, a human girl becomes a banished Boov's ally. Read More