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The Indian In The Cupboard


MPAA Rating:


Run Time:



Hal Scardino



(pictures (c)1995 Columbia Tristar Home Entertainment)

Still shot from the movie: The Indian In The Cupboard.

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Overall A-
Run Time96

Making the Grades

Omri (Hal Scardino) is a young boy who receives an unusual present at his birthday: An old cupboard that magically transforms plastic toys into small human beings. At first, Omri simply sees this as a way to add new life to his tiny toys, however he soon discovers that these miniature beings present responsibilities and challenges he never dreamed of.

Don't be fooled by the toys included with this video. What seems to be a children's story actually offers many ideas that are just as relevant to adults. The sanctity of life, no matter what shape or size; respect for others and the way they live in spite of our personal prejudices; an appreciation for freedom to choose our own destiny; and how our actions can effect the lives of all those around us are just a few of the themes explored in this film.

Each of the little characters come from a different social background and place in history. With the help of a parent, children can be assisted in understanding why the characters interact the way they do. Parents should be prepared to offer a knowledge of the fate of the Iroquois Indians, why a British soldier fighting in the First World War would rather be dreaming, and how white settlers felt about the native people they found on this continent.

Some scenes may be disturbing for younger children. Little Bear, the tiny Indian, shoots Boone the cowboy with an arrow while watching a violent western on television. Later, in probably the most frightening scene, Little Bear risks his life against the family's pet rat to save Boone. Language is limited to minor profanities, and the only moment with questionable sexual content is a rock video Omri and his friend watch on television.

The realistic portrayal of children in this movie (thanks mainly to Scardino's natural abilities to look and sound like a real child) and the sensitive script help make The Indian In The Cupboard a worthwhile entertaining and educational experience for the entire family.

Canadian Movie Ratings

Not Rated
AB Not Rated
MB Not Rated -----
ON Not Rated
QC Not Rated
Not Rated

Canadian Home Video Rating: G

Watch @ Home

Details on home video releases of The Indian In The Cupboard...

Revisiting Indian In The Cupboard on DVD, I found myself loving this movie even more. Of course the DVD offers everything you would expect—wide screen picture, beautiful colors, additional information regarding the production of the movie, and an enlightening director’s commentary by Frank Oz—which after having listened to it, makes you appreciate the work involved in this production made on the cusp of the digital cinema revolution. The only disappointment was the lack of a Dolby Digital 5.1 surround track, yet the standard Dolby Surround offering (still recorded digitally of course) gave bright presence to Randy Edelman’s incredible score.

DVD Release Information:

  • Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
  • Theatrical release date: July 14, 1995
  • DVD release date: July 3, 2001
  • Runtime: 98 minutes
  • Production company: Columbia/Tristar Studios
  • Package type: Keep case
  • Aspect ratios: Two sided disc with Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1 on one side and Full Screen (standard) 1.33:1 on the other
  • DVD encoding: Region 1
  • Available audio tracks: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Available subtitles: English, Spanish, French
DVD Extras:
  • Commentary by director Frank Oz
  • Photo gallery of production stills from movie
  • Filmographies for key production personnel
  • Theatrical trailers for other movies

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