Good kid movies have something for everyone — enough fun and excitement to engage the young ones and enough intelligence and creativity to make things bearable for older audience members (the likely chaperones). According to critics' reviews, the new film "The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure" is not one of those films.
The Oogieloves are the brainchild of Kenn Viselman, who has previously been involved with popularizing Teletubbies and Thomas the Tank Engine. The Times' Mark Olsen describes the eponymous felt-covered protagonists as "a prefab construction meant to appear like a beloved set of characters." He adds: "While it's tempting to call the plan cynical, the results are so ineffectual and disengaging that it may be better to call it just plain dumb." The story is cursory (the Oogieloves chase magic balloons, basically), and cameos from actors such as Chazz Palminteri, Jaime Pressly, Cary Elwes and Cloris Leachman leave them "all looking slightly confused and vaguely embarrassed."
Loren King of the Boston Globe isn't keen on "The Oogieloves" either, writing that "it's like paying to watch a dumbed-down mash-up of the least creative parts of 'Teletubbies,' 'Barney & Friends,' and 'Pee-wee's Playhouse.'" King adds that the film's planned interactive moments, during which kids are encouraged to stand up, dance and yell, "seemed more obligatory — you will have fun! — than spontaneous." In the end, the film "seems so intent on getting toddlers to love it — and no doubt the merchandise that’s sure to follow — that such details as an engaging story line and originality seem to have gotten lost in Lovelyloveville."