Lilo & Stitch (2002) Movie Review

Lilo & Stitch (2002)

Movie Review by Debbie Winkler


Starring: Daveigh Chase, Chris Sanders, Tia Carrere, David Ogden Stiers, Kevin McDonald, Ving Rhames
Director: Dean DeBlois & Chris Sanders
Series: Lilo & Stitch Movie #1
Release Date: 21 June 2002
Language: English
Length: 85 minutes
Movie Rating: PG
View Format: TV
My Rating: 4.5/5 stars


Disney‘s song-filled, Oscar-nominated animated comedy follows a lonely Hawaiian girl named Lilo (voiced by Daveigh Chase) who’s being raised by her older sister, Nani (Tia Carrere), under the watch of social worker Cobra Bubbles (Ving Rhames). When Lilo adopts a funny-looking dog (Chris Sanders) and names him “Stitch,” she doesn’t realize her new best friend is a wacky extraterrestrial created by mad scientist Dr. Jumba (David Ogden Stiers).” —


I was determined not to like this movie when it was first released.  I thought that it looked way too weird to be good and that Disney was trying too hard.  Why didn’t they just stick to what they are best at – fairy tales?  Anyway, by the time it was released into theatres, I was so sick about hearing about it and seeing sneak previews that I didn’t even want to go see it, but my friends wanted to go and I am a true Disney fan, so I went.  Surprisingly enough, I really enjoyed this original story.  It is very different than anything else that Disney has done, but I think it is a good thing!  You can really tell how creative and imaginative some of the people working at Disney are!

Lilo (voiced by Daveigh Chase) is such a wonderful little girl.  She is kind of klutzy and bad things have a tendency to happen around her, but she is trying so hard to be a good girl.  I love that she constantly sees the good in people, even when they don’t deserve it.  I love Stitch (voiced by Chris Sanders) in this movie!  He is a monster, but is just so adorable!  He cannot always suppress his evil tendencies, but I love that he starts to try to be good and to be a part of the family and the end of the film.  Stitch’s creator, the evil genius Dr. Jumba (voiced by David Ogden Stiers), is a riot.  He doesn’t even try to be good and has his own way of doing things, usually by making up his own rules.  Agent Pleakley (voiced by Kevin McDonald) is a very unique character.  He is pretty funny as he is trying to protect the mosquitoes on earth, and who the heck would miss those little pests?!  He is a cross-dresser and a bit different and I know that some moms had issues with his character.  Was it needed, probably not.  Did it detract from my enjoyment, no.  Agent Bubbles (voiced by Ving Rhames) was my favorite character in the movie, though, as a tough kind of “Men-in-Black” social services agent.  He has this wonderful deep voice and has a great way of expressing himself.

This is not your typical cutsey, fairy-tale with a happily-ever-after ending, but it is a fun, spirited adventure that I think families will love.  It is set in Hawaii and I love the way that they chose to animate it.  Everything was well thought out with curvy lines, bigger people and lots and lots of color.  They use some unique ideals about Polynesian culture and really have fun with it.  This animated feature wormed its way into my heart and I enjoy watching it from time to time.  If you enjoy this movie, you will also have a fun time with Lilo & Stitch: The Series, which is on The Disney Channel.  I am happy to know that Lilo & Stitch are still running around, having adventures, as they are such adorable and memorable characters.  If you are looking for a good laugh that is family-friendly and has some sci-fi action in it, this movie is a great choice!


This movie deals with alien monsters, disaster-prone little girls, two sisters struggling to survive without their parents, some mild violence, a cross-dressing alien, high-powered laser guns, and other science fiction action.  There are a few scary scenes, but I don’t think children will have any issues watching this movie.  Recommended for ages 3 and up.

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Filed under Animated Movies, Children & Family Movies, Comedy Movies, Science Fiction Movies

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