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Nicholas spoiler
NICHOLAS WILL NOT LET THE SPIRIT SPOIL IT FOR YOU! This article contains plot details that may ruin the plot of the story for you.

Read at your own risk. You have been warned.

The Care Bears Movie was the first Care Bears feature film of the franchise. It was released on March 29, 1985.

Movie Summary[]

Mr. and Mrs. Cherrywood are a middle-aged couple who run an orphanage. Mr. Cherrywood tells the orphans a story about the Care Bears and their home in the clouds called Care-A-Lot.

As the story starts, two of the Care Bears (Friend Bear and Secret Bear) travel around the Earth to cheer people up.

They soon meet two orphaned children named Kim and Jason, who lost their parents in the car accident. Friend and Secret introduce themselves and remind the children of their ambitions; neither of them takes interest.

Meanwhile, at an amusement park, another Care Bear, Tenderheart, spots a magician's apprentice named Nicholas. While unloading a trunk of goods for his master, the "Great Fettucini", Nicholas finds an old book with a diary-style lock on it.

When he unlocks the book, an evil spirit appears as a woman's face and starts corrupting his mind. With Nicholas' help, the spirit lays waste to the amusement park and begins a quest to remove all caring from the world.

Back at Care-a-lot, some of the other bears are working on their new invention: the Rainbow Rescue Beam, a portal that can send any Bear to Earth and back in an instant. The two youngest bears, Baby Hugs and Baby Tugs interfere with the machine and bring forth a group of unexpected visitors—Friend Bear, Secret Bear, Kim, and Jason.

The Bears introduce themselves to the children and give them a tour of their home. Tenderheart soon returns before a "Cloud Quake", an earthquake-like disaster, ruins Care-a-lot due to The Spirit. Tenderheart informs the others of Nicholas' troubles on Earth.

Bringing them to the Rescue Beam, he sends Kim and Jason to the park, along with Friend Bear and Secret Bear. The four of them end up in the Forest of Feelings after the portal malfunctions. From a nearby river in the clouds, the rest of the Care Bears begin searching for the group aboard the Cloud Clipper.

Within the Forest, the children and their friends are introduced to Brave Heart Lion and Playful Heart Monkey, two of the Care Bear Cousins. Later on, the other Bears discover more of the cousins, among them Cozy Heart Penguin, Lotsa Heart Elephant, Swift Heart Rabbit, and Bright Heart Raccoon.

During their stay, the spirit attacks them in several guises—as a spearfish, a tree, and an eagle. After the Care Bears and the Cousins defeat them, the friends venture back to Earth to save Nicholas from the spirit's influence.

At the park, Nicholas obtains the ingredients for his spell against the children and the creatures. After he casts it, the Care Bears and Cousins engage in a long battle against him.

The bears shoot beams of bright light towards him, forming their "Stare"; the Cousins help with their Call. As their power drains, Nicholas and the spirit briefly regain control.

But after Kim and Jason assist him, the apprentice finally realizes his misdeeds; with Secret Bear's help, he closes the spirit's face back into the book and saves himself, the park, and the world.

Nicholas thanks the group and reunites with Fettucini while Tenderheart Bear inducts the Care Bear Cousins into the Care Bear Family, and Kim & Jason find new parents at one of Nicholas' shows.

After Mr. Cherrywood finishes his story and looks over the orphans, his wife reveals his first name, Nicholas, before the two head off to sleep. Tenderheart Bear, who had been listening from outside the window, giggles and returns to Care-a-lot in his Cloud Mobile.

The film ends with most members of the Care Bear Family waving good-bye.


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The film received mixed reviews from critics and audiences. While the film resonated well with a smaller audience, many have criticized the film for being too childish and underdeveloped for the big screen. It’s been said that the film would’ve worked better as an extended Saturday morning cartoon for television rather than a theatrical motion picture.

However, the film was an unexpected box-office success grossing up to $34 million worldwide on a $2 million budget which saved Nelvana’s studio from shutting down.


  • The Care Bears Movie is the only 1980s theatrical movie of the franchise that was released on DVD more than once, as it was considered successfully marketed. Care Bears Movie II: A New Generation was only released once on DVD back in 2003, as it wasn't nearly successful due to the frightening themes that were regarded by parents. The Care Bears Adventure in Wonderland never made it on DVD in North America at all, as it was considered a marketing failure.
  • "Strawberry Shortcake Meets the Berrykins" is a theatrical featurette, played before the Care Bears when first released in theatres. It was later, also included on VHS of The Care Bears Movie.

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