Review: 'Dolphin Tale' a cute story

"Dolphin Tale" is the kind of constantly uplifting heart-warmer in which even the villains are congenial.

Story highlights

  • It's no spoiler to say that there is a happy ending
  • The injured animal is played by its real-life counterpart
  • Morgan Freeman also plays a version of himself
A dolphin named Winter loses its tail to a crab trap in "Dolphin Tale" -- a (sometimes sickly) sweet family film based on a true story.
It's no spoiler to say that there is a happy ending, partly because this is the kind of constantly uplifting heart-warmer in which even the villains are congenial, but also because the injured animal is played by its real-life counterpart. Morgan Freeman also plays a version of himself as a kindly wise man whose expertise in prosthetics helps save Winter.
While the plot occasionally feels like "Free Willy" without the drama, it's a cute story if you don't mind temporarily trading in your cynicism for a bag of popcorn.
EW.com rating: B-