The Birds and the Bees... and Bambi

Updated on April 21, 2011
N.M. asks from Bell, CA
17 answers

My husband and I were screening the movie Bambi last night. We wanted to watch it before our 3 year old saw it to know if it would be appropriate. Well, the beginning of it was so wholesome I actually got a little queasy... OK, good, not bad for our daughter. Then there was a little scary part... not a problem... we could easily fast-forward to the next scene. But then.... we got to the middle of the movie and there were all these birds doing the "happy dance" around eachother. Bambi and his friends ask what's going on and the Owl was talking about "twitterpadding". Sure it was all said innocently, but as adults my husband and I raised an eyebrow. Then there was some twitterpadding violence and more scary parts.

We both decided that we would wait for our daughter to get older before viewing this movie, but my reasons were for the violence. She gets scared when a movie scene is dark or has any violence in it. But my husband turns to me and says that he doesn't want her to see this movie because he's not ready to have "the talk" with her. LOL!!!

Sure, as adults we understood what the birds and rabbit, skunk, and even Bambi were going to do, but I highly doubt a 3 year old would even notice. I grewup around Bambi and other Disney movies and never saw them as sexual. They were cute and funny and never "brain-washed" me or made me have questions about sex.

So my question is.....
Is there any childhood movie you remembered as being innocent and pure, but later viewed as an adult and was shocked at how "grownup" it was?

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So What Happened?

Whoa Palmela,Raven & Son...... Please calm down. I don't think you properly read my post. I said I didn't want my 3 year old to watch because I know she would be scared of the violence and darker parts of the movie. Getting lost and his mother dieing. I was not shook up about letting her watch it because of the mention of sex because and I quote..."I highly doubt a 3 year old would notice." I mentioned what my husband said because I thought it was cute.

Before you go and attack someone's parenting stills, please make sure you read the post accurately.

For the other posts.....Thanks for the input! We watch a lot of Pixar and Dreamworks movies and are well aware of how "adult" they are. We laugh at many things in those movies that our daughter doesn't get. It's one of the things I love about todays childrens movies. The adult jokes are so beautifully thrown in there. That's why I thought my husband's statement was so funny. He knows that the movies today are very adult, but for some reason Bambi freaked him out. LOL!!! I guess he thought because it's an old movie, it was more wholesome. Funny... But the movie just has too many scenes that I know my daughter would not like so we're just going to wait.

Mamaof3 M. You do have a smart one!! That's really cute that she caught on that Arial was 16. Many adults I know have never noticed that!

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answers from Boston on

I was Addicted to the Movie Grease when I was a LITTLE girl (when it first came out on VHS, I was born in 77 and it came out in 78) - so obsessed that we rented it sooo many times from the movie store my dad bought it so I could watch it anytime I wanted. LOVED IT the music, the clothes, Everything. OMG there are soo many adult things in it, songs etc. that I just 'never knew' about -It was over my head - I just adored the 'movie' LOLOL

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answers from Detroit on

I really think you are over-thinking this...I highly doubt a 3 year old will need to have sex explained to her after watching Bambi, because as far as I'm concerned, "twitterpated" is more akin to falling in love, and it's us jaded adults that end up seeing sexual overtones and whatnot in everything we see (and I know there a lot of adult themes in kids movies to keep the adults entertained as well). Personally, I am not showing Bambi to my 3 year old for a while because of the fact that *SPOILER ALERT* Bambi's mother gets killed by a hunter (for those of you who have never seen the movie, it's off-screen not actually shown). That's the only thing that is preventing me from showing it to her (and she gets scared by any villain or other "bad guy", and every Disney movie has them in some form). There's nothing that says any 3 year old MUST watch Bambi - there's plenty of other movies out there they can enjoy (my 3 year old likes the Tinkerbelle movies out right now that go directly to DVD - there is also Dumbo and Cars).

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answers from Columbus on

Almost all the Disney movies have something in them. I remember watching the Chevy Chase Vacation movies as a kid (like 8 or 9) at my Dad's house b/c he didn't really know what kids were supposed to watch. At 8 or 9 I just thought it was funny, but now watching as an adult I sit and think "I really should not have been watching them movies at that age". Oh well.

Kids don't understand the "sex" stuff and have no clue what it even is. I think Shrek has a lot of Adult Humor too but again as kids I don't think they get it.

Edited to add - It took my husband till he was 19 to realize how dogs mate when he yelled "Mom.. the dogs are stuck together", lol... And he watched all the Disney movies. So obviously he didn't learn too much from them. HeHe

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answers from Salt Lake City on

I remember Bambi- the sex parts kids wont get
The sad parts she will get and if you dont think she is ready for them that is your deal you have to explain it. I went to see Bambi with my mom when I was 5 I remember in the part where the dad comes to him in the forest I stood up and yelled " Bambi thats your dad!!" with tears streaming down my face. The entire theater laughed my mom almost died. Every time I see the movie I want to yell in that part

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answers from Chicago on

Happy Feet -- the penguin movie. I still joke with my daughters that I took them to a penguin sex movie when they were young. I thought their dancing was actually disgusting.

And it's never too young to start talking about the birds and the bees. Make it just a part of life. And communicate about it often so your daughter will be comfortable talking to you about it in the future.

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answers from Biloxi on

Hah, the first album - yes, vinyl - that I begged my parents to buy me was the soundtrack from the play "Hair" - quiet the Vietnam, hippie era play complete with stage nudity and all- with overt references to just about everything. I think I was about 10 and I know I didn't get most of the references - I just liked the music. Oh, and they did buy it for me - we were all so very liberal then. LOL

Anyhoo, I find that all Disney movies, and many traditional children stories, have darker elements. Bambi's father, Nemo's mother, the ostracization of the Hunchback, the evil stepmothers, Simba' father, etc. Don't forget that the Grimm's Brother Fairy Tales were originally written for adults - it was not until later that they became childrens stories.

I usually avoided these types of movies when my son was very little. When we watched TV we watched PBS mostly. The others scared him - and really, what was the point of having my 3 year old son have nightmares after watching a "childrens" video.

I think you and your hubby are doing the right thing by screening movies before your daughter sees them. It will not hurt her to miss Bambi - I thought it was a terribly scary movie when I was a child.

God Bless

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answers from Seattle on

haha...that reminds me of the Friends episode where they are watching "Old Yeller" and Phoebe walks in and comments about how much she loves the movie...until they get to the part where they shoot the dog (that's old yeller, right?!). She didn't know that's what happened because her mother always turned the movie off before it got that far!
I must admit, I don't know what "twitterpadding" is. :) I had to google it! My children have not seen the movie either, and not because of that. But, the mother gets shot and I think that would really bum my kids out and they are older than your daughter. I totally get why you don't want your daughter to see that.
My kids haven't seen the little mermaid either...Ursula is scary!! I saw ET when I was their age, but I will not have my son's see it yet. There are a lot of kid movies that I don't think are very kid appropriate. Heck, my son (5) saw a movie the other day where the kid is turned into a robot (the dad makes him) and the dad gets mad at him and says something to the effect of, I don't love you. My son turned to my husband and said, "But you love us dad,right? You would never say that."
Kids are sensitive! I don't baby my kids, but I don't think death, dying or hatred are things they need to see in movies.
ADDED - what?? Happy Feet was bad? Man, I missed that! We loved that movie.

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answers from Bloomington on

The only thing that bothers me is usually the language. I hate "shut up" and "stupid" and the second is in almost all of the current Disney movies.

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answers from Houston on

Not really movies,,,,but songs, definitely.

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answers from Los Angeles on

My husband and I are huge "Disney" and "Pixar" animated features fans - we went to see them even before we had kids! You will be amazed to find out that most of these movies have got "adult" references (that kids just don't understand but which amuse the adults!). We let our kids watch all the movies, but we watched with them, and (if there was something that frightened them) we would pause the movie and discuss it with them. Sometimes its enough just to say its make-believe and nobody really got hurt. My kids are now 18 and 15 years old respectively, and I can honestly say that watching those movies did not adversely affect them in any way! :)

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answers from Provo on

HAHAHA! I was a Grease lover as well! That was an eye opener. But I do second Robbe as keeping sex an everday type topic. Nothing to be ashamed about it. Around my house sex was a hush hush topic and now My older brother, sister, and I are all single parents. IF I would have felt comfortable asking my mom things or even having permission about getting birth control, I wouldn't even be a mom or on this site. So I guess what I'm saying, is don't make it the taboo subject that it is around kids. Obviously there is a certain age when it should be discussed and a limit to descriptions of what it is. But don't make it an uncomfortable thing in your house.

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answers from Chicago on

Ok, these movies are typically made with adult themes so the adults do not get bored watching ... I have even seen some "Disney's Little Einsteins" tv episodes where daddy and I were staring at eachother wondering if we were seeing/hearing the same thing our kiddo was! So, I understand the darker parts, my neice cried during Beauty and the Beast (spoiler if you have not seen) from "The Mob Song" up thru the end where he turned human ... we typically fast forward for her and she was 6 the last time I watched with her. My son LOVES IT his fav part! But he has grown up on those movies un edited. It is up to you on what you have munchkin watch ... may I suggest Cars ... and Toy Story (3 is a bit darker).

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answers from Los Angeles on

If you think Bambi the movie is dark (and it does have some seriously dark and frightening parts), try reading the book! I believe the author is Felix Salten, but I could be wrong.

I read it as a preteen and was really, really disturbed by the violence in it. There was one scene in particular when the hunters are flushing out the animals that is permanently etched in my mind. Hint: Thumper? Yeah. He doesn't make it. In a pretty gruesome way.

Yeah, good for you for pre-watching Bambi. Our DD watches it, and we talk about it, but the important thing is for you to go with what feels right for your family. Don't try to read her the book, though, when she's older. Read if yourself if you want, and let her read it when she's an adult, but WOW. Be aware. Very interesting choice of stories for Disney to decide to animate.

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answers from Denver on

Most of them!

I have noticed adult human in almost all of the Disney movies. We still let the kids watch, but I am constantly amazed that I never noticed any of it was there before!

I didn't want my son watch Bambi either, but my in-laws let him watch it before i could say anything (I was worried about questions I wasn't sure how to answer yet!) and he did fine. He had a few questions, which the grandparents answered gracefully, and has enjoyed the movie since. :)

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answers from Raleigh on

I think most of the Disney movies I watch a part and go, "ahhh I didn't remember THAT scene!" They are still fun to watch though, and just like us, most of the scenes will go right over our kids' heads.

I am with you, however, and Bambi is not allowed to be seen in our house. Growing up, we weren't allowed to watch it because it made hunters out to be the "bad guys". Both my father and grandfather hunt, we always eat the meat, and my dad always taught us that if they didn't hunt the deer would be over-populated and die of starvation (which is 100% true in PA). Anyways, I watched it later on in life and realized my parents were right about Bambi. My son asks about it and we tell him the exact same thing my parents told me.

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answers from San Francisco on

If anyone has the old (about 18 or so years) version of The Little Mermaid, take a closer look at the castle thing in the middle of the picture on the VCR cover. It is DEFINITELY a phallus. They took it out of later versions, apparently.



answers from Los Angeles on

I know you've probably had enough answers at this point and I haven't read them so this may have already been stated but... Have you SEEN Toy Story? My 60 something year old dad's famous quote about that movie... "it's clearly an adult themed movie, because really, who wouldn't want to have a buzz and a woodie?!" I'm just saying, every kid movie I have ever seen has adult themes. It's what makes it tolerable for the grown ups :) Incidentally, in the original Peter Pan animation the mermaids were topless and X rated! LOL! I don't think kids get it at all. It's put there for the grown ups. That said if a movie is too dark for your child - only you will know that so do what you need to do.

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