‘Dumbo’ Is High-Flying Fun for the Entire Family

Greg BentleyBy Greg Bentley4 Minutes

Yes, that’s right! He’s not just another set of ears. He can’t speak like other Disney animals, but his ears and eyes speak loud and clear.

Quite frankly, I am somewhat surprised that a live action remake of a movie entitled “Dumbo” passed through the scrutiny of today’s hyper-sensitivity and political correctness. I am glad that it did. Ladies and gentlemen, children of all ages, you will enjoy the high flying ups and downs of three families, Dumbo and his mom, the circus troupe and the Farriers.

Colin Farrell carries the load as Holt Farrier, recently returned from The Great War only to find his two beloved children, Milly (Nico Parker) and Joe (Finley Hobbins) doing the best they can with the help of their traveling family, the Medici Bros. Circus.

Danny DeVito leads the way as Maximillian Medici, the loving, but oft times misguided head of the Medici Bros. Circus family. Though this group doesn’t carry the weight of the crew of the recent blockbuster The Greatest Showman, they hit their marks in this modern reboot of the classic children’s animated feature.

With Michael Keaton as the indulgent, V.A. Vandevere, Eva Green, as the courageous yet thoughtful Colette Marchant, Alan Arkin as J. Griffin Remington and the unexpected cameo of Michael Buffer (American ring announcer famous for “Let’s get ready to rumble”) as Baritone Bates, the main cast is complete.


As I sat through the clean combination of CG technology and live actors, brought to us by Tim Burton, I soon lost sight of any difference between the two. Yet, I was reminded of the title of a sermon I once heard, “What’s in a Name?” The name referred to in that message was, of course, Jesus. We began to learn the truth of all he represents. So, as I watched this film, I began to jot down a few descriptors for Dumbo…vulnerable, scared, loving, child, son, family, misunderstood, mislabeled, wonder, courageous, intelligent, teachable, persistent, rescuer, friend…miracle.

I found myself remembering that true relationships, both family and friends, are based on love, trust, honor, respect, and investment. This name, “Dumbo,” if only taken at face value could easily lead to hurtful thoughts, words, or actions. Yet, when spoken through the innocence of a child, who easily saw the true potential of one very unique elephant, the truth was revealed.


So, yes, invest in this live action adaptation of the 1941 Disney classic and see if the eyes of your child resemble those of Dumbo’s as he was mesmerized by the dancing pink elephants. It’s a friendly reminder that simple faith, hope, love, and investment in one another always wins over selfish ambition.

Remember the words of the Ring Master, “Anything is possible.”

P.S. Don’t forget the popcorn. You’re at a movie about the circus! Be aware parents. Dumbo is rated PG for peril/action, some thematic elements and brief mild language.