Car chases, evil villains, and cool gadgets make an interesting spy movie that anyone wants to watch. But, to be realistic, not all age groups can watch James Bond movies' riveting and somewhat adult content. Luckily, there are some really good spy movies for kids to choose from.

The only difference is that these spy movies for kids have a lot more fun and lighthearted comedy. Parents will even find themselves watching along and might find their children pretending to be the ultimate secret agent.

Updated on July 11th, 2022, by Shawn S. Lealos: A new Spy Kids movie is coming to Netflix, and it has the original movie's director Robert Rodriguez writing and directing it. This is great news for kids and families alike, as with all the different spy movies released in recent years, from James Bond and Mission: Impossible installments to shows like Hanna, there are not as many spy movies for kids. However, looking back over the years, there are several movies that could fit into this category, giving young audiences something to prepare them for growing up as lovers of espionage where they can then discover the joys of the long history of the genre's best. From live-action spy movies for kids to animated spy movies, there is something out there for all ages.

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Harriet the Spy (1996)

Harriet the Spy looking on.
  • Available to stream now on Starz, Roku, and Spectrum on Demand.

In 1996, a very young Michelle Trachtenberg starred in the Nickelodeon movie based on the classic children's novel Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh. Trachtenberg is sixth-grader Harriet, a young girl who takes her journal everywhere and is always recording suspicious activity because she knows she is meant to be a spy and a writer.

RELATED: 10 Best Teen Spy Movies, Ranked According To Rotten Tomatoes

This is a coming-of-age story that has someone find her journal and reveal to all her friends and classmates what she has written about them, turning everyone on her. When Harriet angrily exposes secrets about everyone in her class, she finds that her life is suddenly falling apart as she loses everyone she cares about and has no idea how to fix it.

Cars 2 (2011)

Lightning racing down a street in Cars 2.
  • Available to stream now on Disney+.

When critics are ranking their favorite Pixar movies from the acclaimed animation studio, Cars 2 almost always ranks near the bottom. However, when looking at movies for kids, there is a lot to like about the second movie featuring Lightning McQueen. If the first movie was a homage to Route 66, this second was a great spy movie for kids. it is a Disney Pixar movie that deserves more attention.

Cars 2 saw Lightning heading out to compete in a major race only to find himself in the middle of a tale of espionage and intrigue. Imagine if James Bond was a car, and you are on your way to what to expect from Cars 2.

G-Force (2009)

G-Force guinea pigs
  • Available to stream now on Disney+.

Disney made the animated spy movie G-Force in 2009, a release that came in between the very successful 1990s and the next generation of successful movies that started with Frozen. That might make this a little less known for a lot of kids, but it is still a quality Disney movie.

G-Force is also different because it is a live-action-animated hybrid, with real actors working alongside the animated rodents. When the government shuts down their operation and sends them to a pet shop, they have to find a way to escape and stop a billionaire from taking over the world.

Penguins of Madagascar (2014)

The Penguins from The Penguins of Madagascar
  • Available to stream now on Netflix.

For fans who loved the DreamWorks Madagascar franchiser, the spin-off movie Penguins of Madagascar is actually a quality animated spy movie for kids. The movie doesn't feature the main characters from the original franchise but instead has the breakout characters of the Penguins in action.

As the group always played the role of spies in the main movies, in their own movie, they really go all out. Seeing themselves as elite spies, they team up with an undercover organization called the North Wind to stop a villain from destroying the world.

The Pacifier (2005)

  • Available to stream now on Disney+.

Vin Diesel had made his name as a tough guy in movies like The Fast & the Furious and xXx, and in 2005, he did something completely different. In The Pacifier, Diesel starred as Shane Wolf, a Navy SEAL with intense military training. The problem is that he has to use it to babysit five kids.

The babysitting comedy actually has him protecting the children from an enemy of their recently deceased dad, a government scientist who hid his last experiment at the house where his kids live. This spy movie for kids allows Diesel to parody the tough guy characters he mastered in a comedy that will capture most young ones' attention.

The Spy Next Door (2010)

Bob holding girlfriend's daughter in The Spy Next Door
  • Available to stream now on Prime Video.

Jackie Chan took on a different type of action-packed role in the 2010 movie The Spy Next Door. Fans of the action star will even get a good kick out of the storyline. In true Jackie Chan fashion, this spy movie for kids has Chan performing all of his death-defying stunt work.

Chan plays the role of Bob Ho. Bob is an undercover CIA operative who retires after putting away a Russian terrorist. His dreams of having a normal life and marrying his longtime girlfriend get tricky; when his girlfriend has to leave urgently, he's tasked with babysitting his future stepchildren. It's not easy as they don't take kindly to Bob and to add more drama, the Russian terrorist comes after him and the secret formula for an oil-eating bacteria.

Get Smart (2008)

Max wearing tuxedo next to Agent 99 in Get Smart
  • Available to stream now on HBO Max.

Get Smart gained traction for its unique Hollywood cast of well-known actors. Steven Carrell starred as Maxwell Smart alongside Anne Hathaway and Dwayne Johnson. The movie is a good spy romp for young audiences and is even liked by some adults.

RELATED: The 10 Movies Based On TV Shows, Ranked (According To IMDb)

Max is an analyst at a secret government agency. His dream is to become an agent in the field, but he is denied due to his importance as an analyst. When the agency is attacked by a terrorist, the secret identities of its agents are revealed. Max is their only shot and is promoted to become an agent and stop a terrorist.

Cats & Dogs (2001)

Two dog characters looking at spy computer in Cats & Dogs
  • Available to stream now on Kanopy.

Cats & Dogs will have child viewers looking at their beloved furry pet a little differently. The 2001 animated spy movie's main characters are cats and dogs who have a long-standing rivalry in espionage. The adorable furry characters combined with the use of a spy storyline will enthrall audiences.

The storyline is comical but full of drama as the cats and dogs of the neighborhood work in secret against each other. The main cat character hopes to stop the creation of a new vaccine that will rid humans of dog allergies. It's up to a Beagle and his comrades to stop the Cats from executing their plan.

Alex Rider: Stormbreaker (2006)

Alex Rider stealing green viles in Alex Rider: Stormbreaker
  • Available to stream now on Roku, Hoopla, Vudu, Tubi, Redbox, Pluto TV, Plex, and Freevee.

For adult audiences who grew up in the early 2000s, Alex Rider: Stormbreaker might jog some memories. It's a perfect spy movie for kids. The movie is based on the character and storyline of Anthony Horowitz's novel series, Alex Rider. Alex Rider (Alex Pettyfer) lived a normal teenage life until his uncle is killed.

Ryder soon learns that his uncle's life was a cover for his real occupation as an MI6 secret agent. MI6 recruits Ryder, as his uncle was secretly training him for years. Ryder is sent to gather intel on an advanced computer system being given away to schools across Britain called Stormbreaker. The movie and novel's character was rebooted into a series in 2020.

The Sleepover (2020)

Clancy, brother and friends looking around corner in The Sleep Over
  • Available to stream now on Netflix.

The Sleepover is a new addition to the action-comedy genre on Netflix that debuted in 2020. The movie has some familiar Hollywood actors like Joe Manganiello and Ken Marino. This isn't the run-of-the-mill spy movie for kids, seeing as there's no secret spy agency, but it follows all the markers of a spy movie.

Clancy Finch's (Sadie Stanley) brother witnesses their mother and father being abducted during his sleepover. After warning his sister and friends, they learn from United States Marshals Agent Henry Gibbs (Erik Griffin) that their mother is in Witness Protection. Their mother was the crime boss of a crime syndicate, and it's up to the children to follow her clues and save their parents.

My Spy (2020)

JJ and Sophie walking away from fire in My Spy
  • Available to stream now on Prime Video.

A six-foot burley secret agent and a nine-year-old tangled into a spy comedy movie sound like a win. My Spy entails the story of a U.S. Special Forces soldier turned CIA operative, JJ (Dave Batista). After botching his first mission, he and a tech operator are tasked with finding the plans for a miniature nuclear bomb wanted by Victor Marquez (Greg Bryk), a French illegal arms dealer.

RELATED: 15 Movies To Watch If You Like My Spy

JJ's boss suspects the plans to have been stashed away at Byrk's brother's home where his wife and daughter reside. The two operatives didn't suspect nine-year-old Sophie (Chloe Coleman) to find their surveillance and infiltrate their mission. She promises to stay quiet as long as she's involved in the mission and learns to be a spy.

Spies In Disguise (2019)

Sterling face to face with Walter in Spies in Disguise
  • Available to stream now on Max Go.

Audiences will be in for a treat with the animated 2019 movie, Spies in Disguise. It's one of the many animated movies voiced by an MCU actor; Tom Holland voiced the role of Walter Beckett, a young scientist tasked with helping a renowned secret agent. When secret agent Lance Sterling (Will Smith) is accused of being a traitor, he searches for Walter his concealment invention.

In this spy movie for kids, Sterling unknowingly ingests a concoction that transforms him into a pigeon. Before Watler can develop a cure, the cybernetically enhanced terrorist, Killian (Ben Mendelsohn) strikes. Not only do Sterling and Walter have to stop Killian, but they must avoid being captured by the H.T.U.V. secret agency.

The Tuxedo (2002)

Jimmy hiding behind Del in The Tuxedo
  • Available to stream now on Max Go.

The Tuxedo was a fan favorite science fiction action-comedy movie starring Jackie Chan. James "Jimmy" Tong (Chan) is known for his impressive speed and skills as a taxi driver. One day, he drives the wealthy and mysterious, Clark Devlin (Jason Isaacs).

Jimmy lands a job as Devlin's chauffeur. When Devlin is attacked and sent into a coma, Jimmy learns that his boss is an undercover spy for a secret government agency. There's a catch, as Devlin had unique skills thanks to a high-tech spy tuxedo. Vowing to seek justice for his boss, Jimmy wears the tuxedo to stop a terrorist organization disguised as a conglomerate company.

Agent Cody Banks (2003)

Cody wearing snow clothes on mountain in Agent Cody Banks
  • Available to stream now on Starz, DirecTV, and Spectrum on Demand.

Agent Cody Banks was the spy movie for kids in the 2000s, and it still holds up today. The movie combined the desire to become a secret spy and teen awkwardness. It's one of actor Frankie Muniz's well-known big-screen works from his career. He stars as Cody Banks, a 15-year-old high schooler who applies to be a covert spy for the Central Intelligence Agency's Special Activities Division.

By day, Cody deals with being an awkward teen, but he attends a disguised summer camp that's actually a kid spy training program. With top marks, Cody is tasked to go on his first real mission. A scientist is employed by a sketchy SPECTRE-type organization named ERIS. Cody has to get close to the scientist's daughter at a prep school to gain intel. There's one problem, Cody isn't anywhere near as suave as James Bond.

Spy Kids (2001)

Carmen and Juni with their parents and uncle in Spy Kids
  • Available to stream now on Starz, DirecTV, and Spectrum on Demand.

Spy Kids is the number one children's movie when it comes to kid characters who save the day. The movie is a cult classic in the spy adventure comedy genre. Carmen (Alexa Vega) and Juni Cortez (Daryl Sabara) go about their day as normal until learning that their lame parents are actually secret spies for the O.S.S. organization.

The O.S.S. suspects children's television host Fegan Floop to be behind the disappearance of other agents and Carmen and Juni's parents. Carmen and Juni use their training and what they know to become agents and get their parents back. The success of this spy movie for kids led to several franchise installments.

NEXT: Spy Kids & 9 Other 2000s Movies So Bad They're Good

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About The Author Gabriela Silva (479 Articles Published)

Gabriela Silva is a List writer for Screen Rant with experience in all things television, film and pop culture. A graduate of Fordham University with previous years experience interning for Cliché Magazine.With her passion for movies, television and entertainment, she's interviewed some great actors from Cress Williams of 'Black Lightning' to Tati Gabrielle from 'Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.' Her love for entertainment reaches a broad range of interests from 90s thriller movies, guilty pleasure teen dramas, action-packed MCU movies to popular K-dramas. You'll most likely find her binge-watching a new television show or movies on Netflix into the early morning.

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2022-07-11T05:06:38.000Z

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