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RATCHET & CLANK

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
RATCHET & CLANK       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
FOCUS FEATURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Ratchet and Clank tells the story of two unlikely heroes as they struggle to stop a vile alien named Chairman Drek from destroying every planet in the Solana Galaxy. When the two stumble upon a dangerous weapon capable of destroying entire planets, they must join forces with a team of colorful heroes called The Galactic Rangers in order to save the galaxy. Along the way they'll learn about heroism, friendship, and the importance of discovering one's own identity
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love the animated movie Ratchet & Clank which is based on the popular Play Station video game. From the beginning to the end, the film kept me on the edge of my seat, as it is an adventurous, funny, heartwarming and witty story. One of the funniest scenes is when Dr. Nefarious shoots Chairman Drek with a laser gun and turns him into a sheep.

The story follows the main character, Ratchet who wants to be a member of the famously respected Galactic Rangers team but unfortunately, is told he doesn't have the right "stuff." According to Captian Qwark, Ratchet may have heart but physically just doesn't measure up as he is too small. However, Ratchet meets and names a robot Clank who is similarly small and both human and robot not only become the best of friends but a powerful duo. Together they make it their mission to try to save the Solana Galaxy from the evil Chairman Drek.

My favorite part of the story is when we learn the robot doesn't measure up to his own kind. In fact, he is considered a "defect" to be terminated because he's small, thinks for himself and doesn't want to hurt humans but wants to help them.

I particularly enjoyed all the various voices talent for the animated characters. My favorite is that of Ratchet's and I was fortunate enough to personally meet and interview both James Arnold Taylor and Bella Thorne (the voices of Ratchet and Cora) immediately following the movie screening. I loved seeing how their actual facial characteristics and physical mannerisms are incorporated into their animated on-screen film characters.

There's not just one moral to this movie but three stand out in my mind. First, is to always believe in yourself and never give up. Second, as told to Ratchet, "To be a hero you don't have to do big things just right things." Third, if the right thing requires you to do the wrong thing then probably the right thing is the wrong thing to do. I love these golden nuggets that make the characters seem very real as cleverly penned by the director, Kevin Munroe.

All ages will like Ratchet &Clank and it's particularly well suited for ages 5 to 12. There's no bad language that make it appropriate for young audiences. The sophisticated storyline, fun adventure, basic struggle of good vs. evil and plenty of twists and turns will appeal to more mature audience, as well. It's also a story about two underdogs who together try to rise to the challenge. Do they succeed? Well, you'll have to see the movie to find out!

Finally and on a personal note, I just love the relationship between Ratchet and Clank - two orphans in the universe finding each other and creating a lasting bond. Together the dynamic human and robot duo try to do the right thing in the right way.

I can't wait until the sequel or maybe even a TV series. I give this film 5 out of 5 galactic stars. Go see this movie. You're going to love it!

Reviewed by Abigail Zoe L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 8.

I was very entertained watching Ratchet and Clank, which is a CG animated movie based on the iconic PlayStation video game. Its animations are delightful and it has a great plot. Ratchet and Clank prove that, if you want to do something, it is not the size of the individual that matters it's the heart!

In this movie, we meet Ratchet (James Arnold Taylor) who is the last of his kind, a foolhardy "lombax" who has grown up alone and dreams of being a Galactic Ranger, a well known hero. When he meets Clank (David Kaye), a small-sized robot who helps him accomplish his dream. Together they join forces with a team of interesting heroes called The Galactic Rangers in order to save every planet in the Solana Galaxy from being destroyed by the alien, Chairman Drek. I enjoyed this movie and I think other kids will enjoy this film.

I loved watching this movie because the CG animation is amazing and the colors are very vivid and rich. The characters look great. It looks very child-friendly for younger audiences. I was satisfied with the comedy, because the jokes are funny and some of them are related to technology in our everyday lives. I enjoyed the plot of the movie because it tells a wonderful story of Ratchet and Clank without doing a disservice to the franchise. I also loved the voice acting performances of Paul Giamatti, John Goodman, Bella Thorne, Rosario Dawson, Jim Ward, James Arnold Taylor, David Kaye, Armin Shimerman and Sylvester Stallone. They all give stellar performances suitable for their characters. This movie also has a nice pace. It's not rushed and doesn't drag either. I can't say anything negative I have to say about this film.

This movie has messages about friendship, heroism, discovering one's identity and the importance of listening to each other. It also shows that you should think before you act. These lessons can help kids learn about the importance of listening and understanding.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 4 to 18. I think adults might like this as well. I also recommend it to people who like family, action, adventure, movies based on video games and comedy movies. It's in theaters April 29, so make sure you go see it with your kids.

Reviewed by Ryan R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


DOWNTON ABBEY: SEASON 6
PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: SERIES, AGES 16 TO ADULT
Topic - Family
Description - Season 6 opens in 1925 with a series of crises reflecting the momentous changes that are transforming society. Women's rights have given Lady Mary and Lady Edith new positions of responsibility: Mary runs the estate, and Edith manages the magazine she inherited from Michael Gregson. Meanwhile, Tom Branson has left for Boston, and newlyweds Lady Rose and Atticus Aldridge are trying their luck in Jazz Age New York. Anna Bates faces a murder charge, though many still suspect her husband. And for the rest of the servants, big doubts hang over their jobs. Will great houses and the fortunes that support them soon be gone?

Downton Abbey is a Carnival Films/MASTERPIECE Co-Production written and created by Julian Fellowes. The series is Executive Produced by Gareth Neame, Julian Fellowes, Liz Trubridge, and Nigel Marchant. Chris Croucher is the Producer. The Executive Producer for MASTERPIECE is Rebecca Eaton. The Senior Series Producer for MASTERPIECE is Susanne Simpson.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The final season of the loved series Downton Abbey written by Julian Fellowes exceeded my expectations. I have been a fan of Downton Abbey since Season One. This final series came to a perfect conclusion and tied everything up nicely. It truly was the perfect goodbye! My favorite thing about the series are the characters and how well the actors and actresses play the roles so well. This continued in this final season. The drama and secrets continue in this season between the Crawley family and those who work for them. I found it intriguing and entertaining and just couldn't wait to see how it all ends. There is also 30 minutes of bonus video which includes: Changing Times, The Cars of Downton Abbey and Farewell to Highclere. Also included in this DVD set is Season 1, Episode 1. I highly recommend for ages 16 to adult.
Runtime: 480 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 16-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 49.99
Media: DVD


JUNGLE BOOK, THE

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
JUNGLE BOOK, THE       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WALT DISNEY ANIMATED STUDIOS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - The man-cub Mowgli flees the jungle after a threat from the tiger Shere Khan. Guided by Bagheera the panther and the bear Baloo, Mowgli embarks on a journey of self-discovery, though he also meets creatures who don't have his best interests at heart. Directed by Jon Favreau. Starring Neel Sethi, Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley, Idris Elba, Lupita Nyong'o, Scarlett Johansson and Christopher Walken
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Disney steps it up in this reboot of the Rudyard Kipling classic tale. This live-action film with enhanced animated animals stays true to the original story while delivering a big Wow! factor with it's realistic animations. Had it not been for the animals talking, I would have sworn they were real.

A stunning voiceover cast combined with an outstanding score equate to, what I believe, is something that outshines the original class from the 60s. I would have loved to have been a fly inside Jon Favreau's mind as he was generating the concept for this film. The visual effects team also deserves a huge applaud for their incredible work. The casting was straight on. Newcomer Neel Sethi, for whom this is his first feature role delivers a lively and believable performance while charming us with his precociousness and adorable smile. You can hardly ask for better voice over work than what we get from Bill Murray as Baloo, Ben Kingsley as Bagheera, Idris Elba as the formidable Shere Khan , Lupita Nyong'o as Raksha and Scarlett Johansson as the seductive Kaa. She and Christopher Walken as King Louis steal the show with their cameo roles. I love this! Can you tell. However, it does have some "scare the pants off you" scenes so, be cautious when determining which child to take with you. It is not for the faint of heart.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I enjoyed watching the new Disney film, The Jungle Book with its vivid and realistic 3D animation. It is slightly different from the 1967 animated film and has outstanding voice acting from Idris Elba, Scarlett Johansson, Bill Murray, Christopher Walken and others.

In this movie you meet Mowgli (Neel Sethi), the only man cub in the jungle and he wants to be a wolf, but in reality he's not. He is raised by wolves and feels he has a nice life. One day, Shere Khan (Idris Elba) threatens Mowgli's life. While the wolves argue about whether or not Mowgli should leave for the safety of the pack, Mowgli decides for them and leaves. He heads out to the "man village". On his way, he meets many enemies and friends such as King Louie (Christopher Walken), Kaa (Scarlett Johansson) and Baloo (Bill Murray). What will happen next? Will he make it to the man village? Does Shere Khan catch him? You just have to watch the movie to find out.

What I like most about this movie is the 3D animation and the voice acting. The animals look so realistic and the sets look amazing as well with very detailed backgrounds. The voice acting is superb. Idris Elba and Scarlett Johansson are scary. Bill Murray is funny and Christopher Walken is scary and funny at the same time. They and the other voice actors truly bring the animals to life in this film. The music adds even more energy and excitement to the film and makes the scenes more interesting.

What I didn't like about this movie is that there are many intense scenes. I jumped out of my seat a few times. This isn't a movie for children younger than 9 years old. This is definitely a "know your kid" type of movie. I also didn't like that King Louie wasn't as friendly looking as in the original film, but besides that this movie is great and entertaining.

The themes of this movie are 1) you can't deny who you are and 2) animals who stick together, survive together. The wolves have their pack and Mowgli is raised as part of the pack. His natural instincts kick in and he makes inventions to make his life easier but is discouraged by the pack because "it is not the wolves' way of doing things." They are man's way. When he is in trouble, his manmade inventions save him.

I recommend this to kids ages 9 to 18. As I said, this really is a "know your kid movie." It contains some very intense scenes that will be frightening to those who aren't accustomed to such things. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to people who like to watch action, adventure and comedy movies. It is in theaters now so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Ryan R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Having now see three versions of the Rudyard Kipling classic, I can honestly say that Jon Favreau's 2016 adaptation reigns supreme. I know that may come as a far-fetched opinion for the faithful fans of the 1967 animated classic, but open your mind to the possibility that this version is above the rest.

The darker, more realistic tone of this live-action adventure is a sharp contrast to the lighter tone of the 1967 musical comedy. That may be off-putting to some fans, but once you're swept up in the visual splendor of the movie, the story becomes ever more engaging. Speaking of which, don't be surprised if a few elements of the 1967 version's story aren't in this one or are rearranged.

Jon Favreau gives the story the proper grandeur it deserves. He uses lush art direction and sweeping cinematography to make the story look bigger. Visual effects aside, the aesthetic of the film gets across the monumental stature a family adventure should have. Combine the visuals with the score of John Debney and you'll find beauty and thrills that bring back a child like wonder.

One thing I really appreciate is the way the film treats the animals as characters, not denying them close-ups or treating them as spectacles. They are instead, portrayed as natural beings within the world of the screenplay. It enhances the brilliant voice acting of the cast. Speaking of which, I hope this film can rekindle the campaign to get voice acting a category with the major awards. Idris Elba is perfectly evil. Ben Kingsley and Bill Murray provide such natural and fitting voice work. And, Scarlett Johansson and Christopher Walken steal the show. Their scenes are the highlights of the movie and are easily the most memorable.

This movie is an overall construction of perfect cinematic elements. Disney has hit a grand slam with The Jungle Book as it will be etched in the memories of audiences for decades. I say this film is one of the best films of this decade and maybe even the last ten years.

With that said, I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. It can be seen at a local theater near you.

Reviewed by Willie J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17

After analyzing this film, I really appreciated it because it is family oriented and explores the relationship of a young man. This film made me wonder if something happened to my parents who would take care of me. I love the fact that the animated jungle animals look so real and talk like human beings. This film blends adventure, drama, fantasy and family in an entertaining story. I enjoyed this film because of the way it takes a classic story and turns it into something amazing. Director Jon Favreau's fantastic adaptation of the story and his devotion to the animals cherish exceeded my expectations. The special effects and 3D portrayal of all the animals are breathtakingly awesome.

The story follows the man-cub Mowgli (Neel Sethi) who departs the jungle after a threat from the tiger, Shere Khan (Idris Elba). The panther Bagheera (Ben Kingsley) serves as his protector and keeps him out of harms way until Baloo the Bear (Bill Murray) comes on board and joins the team. Mowgli embarks on a journey of self-discovery and meets creatures along the way who don't have his best interests at heart. The film shows his innocence and you have to respect and honor him.

I loved the scene when Baloo the Bear and Mowgli go to the lake with Mowgli sitting on Baloo's stomach as they float down the river. I really adored this moment because it is hilarious and it reminded me of a special time I spent with my friends in the pool. A bond is formed that you knew could not be broken.

The message of this film is do not ever hold a grudge against someone because of something that happened in the past. Try to make amends because life is too short and precious. Live each moment to the fullest. That is what Mowgli realizes and does. You should always give someone a chance to fit in.

I recommend this film for ages 7 to 18 because they will definitely be entertained. I give it 5 out of 5 Stars because it is child friendly, hilarious, exciting and enjoyable it even though some terrifying moments exist. This movie opens in theaters Friday, April 15, 2016 so go check it out, you will not be disappointed.

Reviewed by Tre'ana H., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


AFRAID OF THE DARK

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
AFRAID OF THE DARK
OYVIND MIKKELSEN SAUGERUD
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 6 -12
Topic - Family
Description - This is a small film in every way. Limited in space and time, dealing with the oh so insignificant troubles of a father whose son refuses to go to sleep. Director's comment: I wanted to make a warm film about something that really is so insignificant, yet can be so frustrating when you are in the midst of it. How we handle it might not always be the best way, neither for the kids nor for ourselves. The story is inspired by the classic bedtime story "Can�t you sleep, Little bear?" In Norwegian with English subtitles.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I love the camera shots, the color and feel of this film. The story tackles a topic that many kids have experienced - fear of the dark and how a dad helps his son overcome that fear. Watching this might help kids cope with their fear of the dark, especially the ending. The cinematography and the ambience of the film are very well done and quite believable as are the set, costumes and soundtrack. The cinematography is also quite good with well chosen shots that make the viewer feel involved. It flows well with a clear beginning, middle and end. It is clear and easy to understand. There is a bit of repetition in the middle which made my attention drift but the ending is solid. I recommend this be included in a film festival although, you should be aware that there is one instance of moderately inappropriate language. I recommend it for ages 8 to 12. In Norwegian with English subtitles.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 10 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


HEY DEER!

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
HEY DEER!
ORS BARCZY
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 8-12
Topic - Family
Description - Short Animated Film about an adorable, cocoa-drinking deer who is eager to tidy and shoveling in front of his house every day. However, there is a suspicious earthquake all night which causes the mess day by day and make unbearable our fella's life. Between two cups of cocoa the amazing truth comes out which change the deer's life forever.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Thoroughly enjoyable! It goes to show what you can accomplish in six minutes with no dialogue. The production won me over because of the really cool animation and sound design. It won me over because of the interesting and unique premise. And, it won me over because of its awesome ending and interesting blend of real world cinematography and animation during that ending. The animation is extremely well done. I can only imagine that it must have taken hours upon hours to create. It has a really unique premise and is quite enjoyable to watch. It particularly impressed me that it is so good despite not having dialogue. It flows well and easy to watch. Children would enjoy this because of the unique setting and captivating animation. The concept is something I think younger audiences are interested in - snow globes! Combine snow globes with cool animation and deer that lives inside it and, what's not to like? I can't talk enough about how well the animation and soundtrack are done. Very unique and interesting. This film blends animation with real world cinematography in a most enjoyable way. Highly recommended for ages 8 to 18. Director Ors Barczy from Hungary should be commended!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - See adult comments
Runtime: 6 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


CANDY GIRL, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
CANDY GIRL, THE
JOSHUA COSTEA
Series: STUDENT FILM, AGES 7 TO 15
Topic - Family
Description - The Candy Girl clandestine business has been operating smoothly in school until the principal infiltrates an undercover spy in the group. Would the infiltrator betray them?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Quite admirable student production! Any elementary or middle school student would truly relate to this and get a few laughs out of it. This short is well crafted and has good production values, most notably the cinematography and the soundtrack. While there are strengths in the production values, it does suffer at times that the story lacks depth and the acting is a bit sub-par. However, considering that this is from a 14-year-old filmmaker, it is quite commendable. The sets are very well designed and the location works very well. The story flows well with a clear beginning middle and end and it makes sense. The plot is quite believable and would appeal to grade school and middle school kids as they can relate to the setting, the characters and the storyline. Highly recommended for a youth or family film festival as a student production. It is most suitable for kids 8 to 12 years old.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 14 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


BLUE BEYOND, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BLUE BEYOND, THE
BLUEWAVEFILMS
Series: FOREIGN DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10 - 18
Topic - Family
Description - The Blue Beyond takes us on a journey straight into the blue of the beautiful Maldivian islands and under the surface of the Indian Ocean. There we meet giant manta rays, sharks, moray eels and many other inhabitants of our seas. From Germany in English. Big and small, colorful or well hidden fish and other creatures just wait for us to be discovered.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Fantastic cinematography and visual appeal. We are treated to a variety of breathtaking sequences ranging from above the clouds to below the depths of the ocean. We are treated to high-definition viewing of the cool creatures that live in the ocean. The only downside that really sticks out is the fact that, as a documentary, it could have done a better job of teaching the audience about the ocean and the creatures that is showcases. I recommend this production to ages 10 to 18.

The cinematography, the shots, and the camera angles are crucially important to a production like this. Thankfully this production succeeds in that respect with flying colors. If the purpose was to showcase the beauty of undersea life, than this is a near perfect production. It flows well, has a clear beginning, middle and end and it very watchable. It's captivating to see these animals in their natural habitats. Thee is fantastic visual appeal with a variety of shots. My only complaint is I would have liked to learn a bit more about what I was watching.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 13 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


ATTACHED AT THE SOUL

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
ATTACHED AT THE SOUL
WILLIAM LEON
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 10-18
Topic - Family
Description - Donald Kline struggles with having to leave his wife Margie's death bed in order to attend a ceremony where he and his wife will be honored for their life time achievements, which include promoting diversity, equal rights, and acceptance. Donald's daughter, Theresa, however, convinces him that going to the ceremony is the right thing to do. Donald reluctantly goes to the ceremony, but he is only there physically; mentally, he is back in time to the 1950's when he first met Margie. We see their struggles as two teenagers from different ethnic backgrounds growing up in the racially divided South. They open their hearts to find acceptance, friendship, compassion, and love. When Donald finally becomes both physically and mentally present, we realize just how close and attached he and the love of his life, Margie, really are.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - From first time filmmakers, these high school student have created a powerful story about a mixed race couple who truly are "Attached at the Soul" as the title accurately states. A wonderful addition to any film festival that wants to address issues and history pertinent to our daily lives. Kudos to these young people for creating a beautiful short film. Recommended for ages 10 to 18.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 11 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


YOUNG VOICES FOR THE PLANET: 10 SHORT SUCCESS STORIES

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
YOUNG VOICES FOR THE PLANET: 10 SHORT SUCCESS STORIES
LYNNE CHERRY
Series: STUDENT DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10-18
Topic - Family
Description - Young Voices for the Planet is a compilation of 10 stories of youth solutions to the climate crisis. The youth in the YVFP films learn about climate change, are concerned, and take action to reduce CO2. Their passion, commitment and earnestness give the films an emotional punch: they move adult audiences to tears, but they affect young people differently empowering them to act. The films provide replicable templates; reduce CO2 emissions, save the environment, save money, save humanity. For example, Dreaming in Green documents 4 students who learn that Miami will suffer serious economic loss from sea level rise; their school energy audit reduces C02 emissions and saves the school $53,000 in energy bills. In Plant for the Planet, 11-year-old Felix plants millions of trees to take up CO2. Olivia's Birds and the Oil Spill documents 11-year-old Olivia who raises $200,000 to clean oiled birds after the BP spill and speaks to her congressmen about supporting renewable energy. And in We Sing Out! , the Rivertown kids sing with folk legend Pete Seeger and speak out musically; about a renewable-energy-powered future. Climate change can be doom and gloom but these films are about HOPE and EMPOWERMENT.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This film is an interesting, documentary style film that examines 10 different stories about kids who have taken and are taking action against environmental issues, mainly climate change. The production quality is solid, camera quality is good, and the use of text overlays and news graphics really enhances the visual experience. I recommend this production for presentation at a film festival because I feel it has the capability to inspire children into taking action on issues that they are passionate about by showcasing the stories of kids who actually have made a difference in their communities.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Young Voices for the Planet is an interesting, documentary style film that examines ten different stories of kids who have taken and are taking action against environmental issues, mainly climate change. The production quality is solid, camera quality is good and the use of text overlays and news graphics really enhances the visual experience. I recommend this production for film festivals because I feel that it has the capability to inspire children into taking action on issues that they are passionate about by showcasing the stories of kids who actually made a difference in their communities.

The cinematography is well done, shots and angles are clean and there are no awkward scenes. The camera work meets the standards of a professionally done documentary production.

What I enjoy about this film is the fact that it takes a complex and divisive topic like climate change and other environmental hazards and makes them approachable and easy for kids to understand. I feel that it might help spark the passions in other kids, and inspire them to take action.

What is appealing about this title is the fact that it is inspiring to learn that young people can have such profound effects on society, and that they have the power to bring about change. What is unappealing is that some of the stories drag on too long and could have been condensed.
Runtime: 59 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BOX, THE
ISAIAH FERGUSON
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-18
Topic - Family
Description - A boy's imagination takes him places when he discovers an ordinary cardboard box in the streets of his neighborhood.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Wonderfully executed short that explores the world of imagination beyond the box. Every child loved to play in boxes when they were younger and this tween/teen takes it to a new level. Delightful. Recommended for ages 5 to 18.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 5 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
INSTA TREE, THE
ISAIAH FERGUSON
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-18
Topic - Family
Description - An animated "commercial" that advertises an all new growing alternative to vegetation.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This short student makes a wonderful spoof about growing alternatives to actual vegetation. I love its tongue in cheek nature and the perfectly executed animation. Recommended for ages 5 to 18.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 3 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


MAN'S BEST FRIEND

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
MAN'S BEST FRIEND
ROB SPRACKLING
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - 10 year old Zach loves his football - and his football loves him back. They enjoy playing in the garden, going to the park and spending time together, just like a boy with a faithful dog. But when his ball gets lost, Zach must team up with his neglected Mum, to find his best friend. In doing so, Zach and his Mum re-find each other.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - They say a picture is worth a thousand words well, this short animated moving picture must be worth a million words then! The expressiveness of the actors certainly deliver the emotions of this storyline in a fashion that you cannot miss. The animations of the ball/s are only surpassed by the young boy whose love for his soccer ball goes without saying. Mum holds her own, particularly when it comes to finding the ball when it goes missing. Charming, recommended for ages 5 to 12. Older kids and adults will enjoy it too. I can't wait to see more from this filmmaking team.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 8 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
HIGHWATER
KHAREN HARPER
Series: INDI SHORT, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - HIGHWATER is a drama based on true events. Six at- risk teenagers, two ex-prisoners - cum trainee artists and three passionate, na�ve community artists have the daunting task of establishing an alternative school in a conservative border town of Australia. All of these kids' lives are predicated on poverty, drugs and crime. All are heading to become yet another teenage statistic; a juvenile justice case, a young mother, junkie - dead. These are the kids society doesn't want to know about, the smelly kids who don't fit into a neat box, won't do as they are told, are labeled 'drop kicks' 'ferals' or in funding terms: 'units.' Creativity is their equal meeting ground. A performance is booked... Can this unruly bunch of misfits rise to the challenge of staging a theatre performance for the wider community? HIGHWATER offers a glimmer of hope of what tomorrow could bring.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Highwater opens graphically showing the young people against a beautiful background of nature, trees and water and sharing statistics about the 22,000 children of school age not enrolled in any form of education. We are asked "So, where are they"? Next, we are introduced to the characters who tell us their stories. It makes sense and is very watchable.

Overall, Highwater uses great visual techniques as it shows the backgrounds of these young people and we watch them from making their mistakes to their determination to move forward and achieve success.

I recommend Highwater for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festivals because it has several messages and lessons for not only young people but also adults who are looking for ways to help children struggling with life issues. This film can be used to encourage and inspire ways to create alternative education programs for students unsuited for mainstream educational situations. It exemplies a "creative led education program for young people who can't do "mainstream" school. While it is based on students in Australia, the message applies to any community. As a special interest topic, this film can be used to encourage and inspire ways to create alternative education programs. The production value is high enough to meet big screen standards. The imagery and sounds are very good.

Since the film is based on a true story, the vocabulary and concepts are suitable for ages 12 to 18. What is most appealing to me about this title is the stories of a few young people who represent thousands who are struggling with the events of life - drugs, abuse, prostitution and hopelessness.

Reviewed by Juanita S., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 48 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


ALBERT: UP, UP AND AWAY!

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ALBERT: UP, UP AND AWAY!       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 7 TO 12
Topic - Family
Description - Inspired by the beloved children's book, Albert by Ole Lund Kirkegaard, this lively, animated tale whisks you on a journey that has to be seen to be believed! Albert is a smart and cheeky boy, but his taste for mischievous pranks make him a menace in his small hometown. When he accidentally destroys the statue of a local hero and famous hot-air balloon captain, Albert is determined to make up for his mistake. He decides to venture into the world with his best friend Egon... and return as a hot-air balloon captain himself! But Albert and Egon's quest takes a detour when a mean bandit takes advantage of the clueless boys to help him steal the world's largest diamond. Adventure and excitement hit an all-time high in Albert Up, Up And Away!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Albert, born smart and somewhat cheeky, accidentally destroys the town's statue of a local hero - a hot-air balloon captain. Albert is determined to make up for his mistake. He feels that the town's people do not like him and decides that he needs to go on an adventure with his best friend Egon and then return to town as a hot-air balloon captain himself. The adventure takes a twist when they are taken advantage of by a mean bandit who wants them to help steal the world's largest diamond.

The color of the visuals and clarity of the audio is very appealing. The opening is a bit confusing. It opens with a baby's cry. Then you see the baby being held out of a window and then, see him talking and walking.

This will appeal to a child because of the visuals and the characters which are very relatable. The vocabulary and concepts are age appropriate and easy to understand. Albert, while mischievous, knows right from wrong and is always thinking about ways to make wrongs right. The menu allows you to access chapters and view various scenes which is handy when you want to review your favorite.

There are multiple lessons in this show. 1. Follow your dream and never give up. 2. Remember your friends, family and neighbors and treat them kindly and respectfully. 3. Be wary of people who are not so honest and try to hurt others. This show can motivate children to value friendships, be determined to do their best in all they do and think and be creative. Very enjoyable.

Reviewed by Juanita S., KIDS FIRST! juror. This show was a disappointment. The cover, the animation and sound were all exciting and I had high hopes. If I was Danish and saw it in its original language, I may have liked it. The characters often said things out of context, I believe for the purpose of having their words fit the movement of their lips. Because they couldn't say what was originally scripted, it often leads to misfires with the energy of the show. That, coupled with some unresolved bullying and dangerous behavior deems this show unsuitable for young children.

Reviewed by Jan B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Albert Up, Up, and Away! is a cute animated DVD for younger kids that delivers positive messages about friendship, kindness and making smart choices. The story revolves around two best friends, Albert and Egon and the adventures they share. Not an average kid Albert learned to walk and talk at two months old. He has a tenacity for getting into trouble but never on purpose. His parents knew he would change the world one day. Years pass and Albert decides he wants get an air balloon and become its captain so he can replace the statue that he accidentally destroyed when he was younger. His best friend Egon wants to become a pirate captain. However, a mean bandit takes advantage of the bewildered boys and wants them to help him steal the world's biggest diamond. Together they have to face this obstacle while their adventure develops.

This is a good film. The animation is well done but I found myself comparing it to other animated and it scores about average. I liked it although the storyline was too predictable for me, and the pace a bit slow. It is definitely better suited for a much younger audience. I recommend it for ages 3 to 7. It has good, clean humor and lots of action scenes, which younger kids would enjoy.

The menu offers scene selection, trailers and setup. Or you can just play the film. I enjoyed the scene selection feature because it makes it easy to return to where you left off. I enjoyed the trailer because it filled me in on what the movie looks like and gave me the general idea about the film before I started watching it.

I give this film 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it to people who like action, adventure and children films. It is now available now on DVD so, so go check it out.

Reviewed by Ryan R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I found this movie to be very cute, quirky and funny. At first this movie reminded me of Dennis the Menace as it starts off in super hyper mood, but as the movie moves forward Albert calms down. I found this movie to be very cute, quirky and funny.

I loved the graphics and all the detail that went into creating the village scenes. It is crisp and clear and has incredible dimension to it. I re-watched the scene when Albert flies down a hillside in a barrel several times because it is so amazing and laughable.

The characters are like most kids their age. You can see yourself hanging out with them. Albert is my favorite because of his great heart and his willingness to tackle anything, to do the right thing and make people happy. He is very trusting which gets him into all kinds of trouble. This makes him a believable kid because, really we all want to trust people and believe that they are all good at heart. Unfortunately, there are bad people in the world that muck it all up.

When they set out to find another statue for the town, their adventure begins and we meet new characters and find Albert getting into the middle of a diamond heist with pirates. The pirates amused me with their comedic lines. They reminded me of vaudeville comedy. You wanted to shout "boo" whenever you saw them. They are the villains you love to hate. You can tell what they are planning and I found myself yelling at the screen, "Albert don't do it!"

The street market is full of rides, food and games. It made me think of summer and I wanted to join in on the fun. One of the many lessons learned here is "do not steal." It's a great lesson everyone should learn. Also, I know that it is hard for children to know who to trust and who not to. Another less is "you can't trust everyone you meet." Friendship is very valuable as friends can help you out. Last lesson: If you make a mistake, just admit it and have an adult help you figure out a solution.

This was a very funny film with lots of lessons and laughs. I love that this was released in countries other than the United States such as Denmark. They use words which are not in our everyday vocabulary such as cheeky, which is my new favorite word. I recommend this film for ages 5 to 18 and give it 4.5 out of 5 hot air balloon stars. It is quirky and funny and a cute comedy - sure to make you laugh out loud!

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Runtime: 81 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.98
Media: DVD
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


BEAUTY OF THE SANDS

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BEAUTY OF THE SANDS       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
BRIANNA PLATT
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 10-18
Topic - Family
Description - Mystical dream sequence set in the Moroccan Sahara and ancient Fez. Epic quest for the hidden jewel of the sands.

Director's statement: Filmed on location in the Moroccan Sahara and ancient Fez, a mystical dream sequence and search for the lost jewel of the sands.

Director Bio: Brianna Platt has been making movies since she was 9 years old. She's now 13 and lives in Bellevue, WA. Her collection of videos are featured on her YouTube channel, Brianna Caroline. Several of her videos have been featured as the 'Best of LittleBits Projects of 2013/14'. She was accepted to Prodigy Camp at the age of 13, where she had her first taste of making a full-fledged movie production.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Absolutely charming short film by this young student filmmaker. The Moroccan location certainly surprised me. The pace, background music and performance by the filmmaker/actress all surpassed my expectations. Very charming and original. I would love to see more from this talented young woman. Accepted.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 4 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


THEN AGAIN

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
THEN AGAIN       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
BRIANNA PLATT
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - When an annoying classmate falls in the lake, Lucy ponders whether he's worth saving.

Director's statement: Whether it be helping someone potentially drowning in a lake, or simply holding the door open, one of the best things you can do is to help other people, despite previous experience or consequences.

Director's bio: Brianna Platt has been making movies since she was 9 years old. She's now 13. Her collection of videos are featured on her YouTube channel, Brianna Caroline. Several of her videos have been featured as the 'Best of LittleBits Projects of 2013/14'. She was accepted to Prodigy Camp at the age of 13, where she had her first taste of making a full-fledged movie production.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Love this. Very insightful. Well made - from the storyline to the production values. Good video, good audio. Love the flashbacks. Anyone who's ever been a teen can certainly relate to this. You can feel her thinking, "should I save this jerk or not." We don't know until the end what the true situation is. Accepted.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 3 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-15
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


OTTER OF THE UNDERGROUND

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
OTTER OF THE UNDERGROUND
CHRISTINA BENENATI
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - When their gold mine experiences a mysterious power outage, Otter and Mole's journey to restore the mine spirals into a wild adventure. Director Bio: Christina Jean Benenati is a story developer, fabricator, and animator. She recently graduated from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts in May 2015, with a degree in Film & Television and a focus in Animation. She is currently working as a Puppet Fabricator at Laika Inc. Christina has always enjoyed making art and began her storytelling adventures at an early age. She has a strong interest in creating children's media and particularly enjoys stop-motion animation. Her film, Otter of the Underground, was completed for her advanced senior project at NYU.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Shiver me timbers! Watch out for the unusual suspects! This short piece has fantastic puppets and sets, great background music and sound effects and a cute storyline. I love Otter and Mole. They are adorable with great voices. Beet makes a perfect villain as well. Great addition to any children or family film festival. Accepted.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 5 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


DEDE: MEHMET WITH THE YELLOW BOOTS

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
DEDE: MEHMET WITH THE YELLOW BOOTS
NATHALIE FREY
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - By chance, 11 year old Dutch Merel discovers a big family secret: her biological grandfather is Turkish. Against her mother's wishes, Merel and her new friend Emre, start a quest for her mysterious grandfather Mehmet. During this adventurous journey, Merel meets remarkable persons and gets caught up in funny and difficult situations. To find out in the end that true family is closer than she thinks. Dutch with English sub-titles
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Watching how this young girl manages to explore her Turkish roots in such a way as to bring about a major change in her family brought a smile to my face. Some programmers may take issue with the 11 year old running off to Amsterdam in search of her grandfather. Even though her slightly older neighbor boy accompanies her, she is still running away. But, there are appropriate consequences and a cheerful ending. This is well produced - good video and audio, a good story line and moves along at a quick pace. I recommend it.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 25 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


BRAVE BUNCH: CHILDREN OF WARSAW UPRISING

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BRAVE BUNCH: CHILDREN OF WARSAW UPRISING
ZOFIA PREGOWSKA
Series: FOREIGN DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - A group of children run through the streets of modern-day Warsaw; the city their playground. One of them spies a discarded journal and they are transported back to August 1944. As the children enter the Warsaw Rising Museum, the exhibits soon step out of the past. Based on fact, with a sprinkling of magic realism and driven by the children's curiosity, Brave Bunch. The Uprising through children's eyes relates tender, often moving accounts of those who witnessed the uprising as children themselves, drawing a line between past and present with playful dexterity. From Poland in Polish with English sub-titles.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This retelling of the Warsaw Uprising is very personal in the way that the stories are told by people who appear to have actually experienced it. It makes their stories very accessible to young people and drives their stories home.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 30 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


SONIC BOOM

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
SONIC BOOM       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SEGA OF AMERICA
Series: SHORT, AGES 7-15
Topic - Family
Description - "Sonic Boom" is the funny bone of the iconic Sonic the Hedgehog universe, which began as a Sega video game 25 years ago. This 52 part TV series follows team Sonic, including the Blue Blur himself, Tails, Amy, Knuckles, and Sticks, as they cleverly battle nefarious genius Dr. Eggman and his hench bots.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Well executed! Film Festivals will love this episode which is very topical for filmmakers as it addresses the "star", the "director/producer" and the behind the scenes of filmmaking. Based on the 25-year-old "Sonic the Hedgehog" video game, the animation zings with color and depth. The surprise plot, discovered mid way through the episode makes a turn around turn into another turn around. Might be a bit confusing to the youngest kids but older kids will get a kick out of it. Recommended for ages 7 to 15.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 11 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-15
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


LEARNING ALLIANCE, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
LEARNING ALLIANCE, THE
MUHAMMAD UMAR SAEED
Series: FOREIGN DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10-18
Topic - Family
Description - Collecting garbage for earning and paying their fees for school. Three brothers who are changing their future by studying and at the same time selling garbage in Lahore, Pakistan. The Learning Alliance is a portrait of children with dreams and their struggle towards achieving it. Director Bio: After graduating in film production, Umar started producing documentaries and short films which have been screened in many reputable film festivals around the globe. Umar was the part of Sesame Street production in Pakistan (A project by USAID). He is also curating and programming film festivals in Lahore. The Learning Alliance is his latest documentary. From Pakistan. In Urdu with English sub-titles.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Education is not free for everyone! This short documentary shows the passion for education that these young Pakistani children have and what they are willing to do to pay for it. Watching this brought tears to my eyes. When I think of all the children who take their education for granted, I want them to see this - to see how much it means to those less privileged. Thanks to this fine director for bringing this subject to the forefront and showing us the lives of these children. Recommended for ages 10 to 18.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 9 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


BULLETPROOF KARMA

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BULLETPROOF KARMA
HALONAH ABRAHAM PAISS
Series: STUDENT DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10-18
Topic - Family
Description - This is a true story about Barry Shoda, a man diagnosed with an aggressive cancer and a deadly brain tumor. His doctor told him he had only a short time to live. Barry did several things to save his life, including taking a CBD oil made from hemp. This documentary provides hope that people with cancer can have an effective alternative to chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Screenings at: Boulder International Film Festival Youth Pavilion; Niwot Student Film Festival ; Longmont Front Range Film Festival
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Visually stunning images open this insightful student documentary which examines the impact of CBD hemp oil on stunting a cancerous brain tumor. This high school student filmmaker has tackled an important subject in a touching way by interviewing the subject and his physicians. Recommended for any student or youth film festival for ages 12 to 18.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 9.5 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


MY JOURNEY: FINDING WATER SPRINGS

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
MY JOURNEY: FINDING WATER SPRINGS
FAUZI SAAAD
Series: ENVIRONMENTAL FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Topic - Family
Description - Four young people; Chinta, Cindy, Tasya and Celine intend to fill their holidays with friends drove from New York named Lucas who are interested in the environment, especially the water springs. They are desperate to roam the wilds find a spring that allegedly are increasingly rare becauseof the development of civilization. In Indonesian with English sub-titles.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The film is very aesthetically very pleasing. The cinematography is beautiful and well executed. The short-coming of the film is the slow movement of the storyline and the poorly executed subtitles. The structure is long and drawn out but stylistically it's beautiful. The production values are absolutely amazing. I was so impressed by them. The landscape shots are like nothing I have ever seen outside of a theater. The editing is also incredible. I recommend it for ages 12 to 18.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 95 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


GONE WITH THE TIME

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
GONE WITH THE TIME
AMOPIX
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Gone with the time humorously tells the story of two archeologists sent out to a site to carry out a thorough analysis. Their investigation leads them to the remains of a 2500-year-old Gallic village.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - A brilliantly animated overview of archeological studies that serves as an introduction to school aged kids to this field of science. Filled with humor and a silly chicken, the student filmmaker has created a short that will hold the interest of kids while they're learning about this field of study. Produced in France with English dialogue. Highly recommended for a student or youth film festival for ages 6 to 12.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see youth comments
Runtime: 15 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


THOMAS EDISON'S SECRET LAB: ROCK IT TO THE MOON

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
THOMAS EDISON'S SECRET LAB: ROCK IT TO THE MOON       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - The Secret Lab Kids are ready to demo their new science song for web entrepreneur Mook Zookerboom when he learns that a satellite is coming down out of orbit, panics and heads for the airport. So the team must gather some data on gravity to convince him to return.� Then, when Von Bolt accidentally destroys the museum's new moon rock, the Secret Lab Kids must find a way to replace it.� Enjoy these adventures and more with the Secret Lab Kids
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - coming soon
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Very entertaining and informative, the animation is filled with vivid color which draws your attention. It truly makes education fun. Its language is easy to understand, giving young viewers the ability to process the information presented. This is an excellent educational series with each episode containing a different message. In the first episode, the robot teaches the viewers to never not do something because they are told not to and to just be happy doing what you love.

The series teaches various things from human anatomy to space science. For instance, they explain gravitational pull and how it differs from in space versus on Earth. I learned that the quantity of atoms doesn't change but gravitational pull makes you weigh less on the moon and the closer the object, the greater the gravitational pull. Jupiter has more mass than Earth which means it has more gravity and, according to the show, it would be less fun there due to the fact that you couldn't float around. The show uses comedy as well to get its point across.

Every episode has an adventure or a problem to solve. Writers Steven Banks, Steven Darancette and Brian Stampnitsky excelled at creating such a cute show that inspires its audience. In fact, it encourages kids to be scientists. Angie, played by Phillipa Alexander who has a lot of experience doing voice-overs for animated films and, it's great to see her here. I like how they have included text when songs come up. It's a small detail that helps you grasp the significance of the words in the songs.

My favorite scene is in the first episode. When learning about space, the characters portray what is being taught by some green aliens and one of them gets attached to the moon due to the fact the gravitational pull has increased as a result of the mass of the moon. This part was just very funny. I recommend this animated film for ages 2 to 6 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. It is available on DVD now so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Giselle T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: Rock It to the Moon is a fun, educational series that made me laugh while I was learning. This show teaches new cool stuff about gravity, nanobots and the birth of the remote control.

Angie, Kent, JD and Nicky are back with Thomas Edison and Von Bolt the robot to solve all kinds of problems by going back in time to learn from pioneers in science throughout history.

In the first episode, Dancing Machine, Von Bolt is invited to try out for a dance competition. The gang and Thomas Edison realize that he's not such a good dancer and decide to build a remote-controlled suit so Von Bolt can make it to the show. They use the virtual reality room to travel back to Spain in 1903 and discover how to use radio and remote control from Leonardo Torres y Quevedo, an engineer and mathematician who created one of the first designs for a remote-controlled device.

My favorite episode is Murphy's Law of Gravity. The kids are trying to impress web celebrity Mark Zoomerboom with their song about science. Instead he discovers a satellite is falling out of the sky and he panics. The kids must find a way to keep him calm to get their song to go viral. This episode was laugh-out-loud funny and there's a cool gag with penguins to watch out for.

My favorite character in the series is Thomas Edison (Livingston Taylor) because whenever the kids are under pressure or doubting themselves, he comforts them and gives them good advice. I really hoped there would be an episode in this volume that showed how the kids found the lab but that is a loose end for me in the story line and I hope they work it in on a later volume.

Some of the other episodes I liked are Rock It to the Moon because they talk about gravity. Another episode I enjoyed is Nanobots Byte because I didn't know what nanobots were. They are really, really tiny robots - and the episode helped me understand how they work.

I like the music videos in this volume even more than the first DVD, Secret Lab Meeting. Some of them are really catchy and some of them are just kind of weird. I recommend Thomas Edison Secret Lab: Rock It to the Moon to ages 5 to 12. Kids will fall in love with this show pretty easily and I think there are some pretty advanced subjects that older kids might want to learn about.

I give Rock It to the Moon 3 out of 5 stars. I recommend you science fans watch this show that presents high-level science with high amounts of fun. Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: Rock It to the Moon is in stores April 26th so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12.
Runtime: 90 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-11
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: DVD


MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 2

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 2       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
UNIVERSAL STUDIOS - THEATRICAL DIVISION
Series: FEATURE FILM AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - Still working in her parents' Greek restaurant, Toula Portokalos's daughter Paris is growing up. She is getting ready to graduate high school and Toula and Ian are experiencing marital issues. When Toula's parents find out they were never officially married, another wedding is in the works. Can this big, fat, Greek event help to bring the family together?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - coming soon
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Although it doesn't live up to the first one, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 kept me laughing and wondering what was going to happen next. It felt like I visited with my own family! Many fans of the original movie felt worried that Part 2 would be a forced sequel with stereotypical jokes. But rest assured it turned out into a sweet, hilarious and heartwarming tale.

The film defiantly belongs to a comedy genre, but contains quite a bit of romance. Another huge element the film represents - coming together of a family, which fits nicely with the other two genres.

The film follows Toula, (Nia Vardalos), the main character from the previous film, a happily married middle aged woman and a 17-year-old daughter, Paris, nearing the end of high school. Just like with Toula, her family tries to find a Greek boyfriend for Paris, but everything changes when they discover an issue with Toula's parent's marriage certificate. Because of this, the family tries to get them married in a real ceremony and hits surprising roadblocks right and left.

I have to say that some scenes felt forced and not necessary in the film and thus, made it a bit boring and it dragged somewhat. It connects to the first film extremely well, which I enjoyed greatly. Original jokes had perfect timing and a great sense of humor. Spot on acting benefited the film and, seeing the same actors play these roles as they did 14 years ago came as a welcome treat. The storyline surprised me and took completely unexpected turns. The soundtrack resembled the music in the previous movie and fit perfectly with the style of the film.

My favorite scene happens when Paris attends a college fair at school. Her parents come with her but stay out of her way. However, the rest of the family finds out about the fair and close to 20 family members come running in. As you might imagine, it gets a little chaotic, with some university representatives getting a few surprise visits along the way. The acting impressed me in this scene. Dealing with so many people on set, actors didn't lose their energy and kept it heartfelt and really funny.

The film seems rather mature in terms of jokes and the story itself so I recommend it for kids ages 14 to 18. I give it 4 out of 5 stars because this film made the audience laugh again and again, has an unexpected story and fantastic acting. However, several scenes make it feel stretched out at times and, once or twice, it gets a bit boring.

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF BAMALIAS

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF BAMALIAS       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 4-10
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - On Planet Bamalias, the Little Prince will go through a terrible experience - he will lose his memory. He can't even remember where and why he is there! Planet Bamalias is at the center of five other planets and all these planets depend on it for their survival. Fox is going to try everything to help him recover his lost memory.� Fox tells the Little Prince their story: why they are here, planet-hopping chasing the snake and how it all started. Slowly the Little Prince remembers but will he remember everything in time to save the Bamalias constellation?� Find out in The Planet of Bamalias!
Runtime: 85 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-10
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: DVD
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


ALISA KNOWS WHAT TO DO!: THE MYSTERY OF THE LAST TRUENOX

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
ALISA KNOWS WHAT TO DO!: THE MYSTERY OF THE LAST TRUENOX       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Alisa Knows What to Do! is based on the extremely popular science-fictional novels about Alise Seleznyova, a young girl from the future, by famous Russian author Kir Bulychiov. This animated series weaves a tale about the adventures of a group of teenagers living at the end of the 21st century. The world has changed yet the burning questions that occupied people at the beginning of the century are still pertinent today. Alisa and her friends not only battle evil and injustice but they are also concerned with global problems like the natural balance and a clean environment, both on the planet and in space. From the far-off planet Verum, Alisa's father, Professor Salazar, brings back a truenox - a mysterious creature that is able to predict the future. Without warning, Professor Salazar's colleague Doctor Gilliam kidnaps the truenox, who Alisa and her friends have grown very fond of. Alisa rushes to the aid of her new friend
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The kids had never heard of this series and had no opinions beforehand. The story is fast paced and keeps the children's attention from beginning to end. The main character, Alisa is smart and engaging. She is courageous and up to a challenge. There are funny moments and intriguing ones. Characters are easily relatable. Older children thought it was "fine" and younger end thought it was "good". One older boy liked "the catastrophe after catastrophe".
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - There are so many great Sci-fi movies and TV shows out there. However, very few of them are meant for kids or are poorly done. Well, Alisa Knows What to Do!, is a beautifully animated and exciting Sci-fi series distributed by N Circle Entertainment that is great for kids and adults.

Each episode is a separate adventure featuring middle school student Alisa and her friends filled with action and even some fun teenage romance. All the stories are kids friendly and yet, contain original humor that adults will appreciate too. Add to that some stunning animated visual effects and it makes it for a great show that a wide audience will enjoy.

Alisa is a young girl living many years in the future. The show follows all her crazy and fun adventures with her family and friends and involves animals and technical gadgets that we hope to have in a future. Additionally, each episode delivers a positive moral story which is nicely portrayed nicely within the show itself. The show stays exciting with fun adventures. If you are a fan of science fiction or enjoy dreaming about the future possibilities like I do, you will enjoy this show where we see lots of technology such as space jumpers, hover boots and even cloning!

The Russian-produced show is produced by Timur Bekmambetov's Bazelevs Group, Riki Group and Animation Studio Moskva. It is exciting to see a very unique style of camera shots and coloring. On top of that, the English dubbing is exceptionally well don and very smooth. I didn't even realize that characters were re-voiced until the second episode. The series is based on the books by Russian science fiction author, Kir Bulychiov. For people who have read his books, as my family did for many years, it is cool to see the characters come to life. However, the stories are original to the show, which allows even readers of his books to be surprised.

My favorite episode is Wipe Out Creativity in which a few of Alisa's friends sign up to take implants to make them smarter and stronger. However, they get in trouble and Alisa and some of her new friends rescue them. I love this episode because the subject is very interesting and starting to come up in today's world. The moral of it is: Don't let others mold you; only you can make you. I think that is very important and agree 100 per cent.

The show is designed for young kids. A few parts may be a bit intense so, I recommend it for ages 7 to 18. I also give it 5 out of 5 stars because it is beautifully animated, has an exciting story, impressive voiceovers and original comedy. Welcome to United States, Alisa Selesneva - kids here are going to love you!

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14.

I found this movie to be unique and interesting. This four episode DVD tells all about Alisa and her four teenage friends embarking on many adventures. The first episode focuses on an adorable creature called a Truenox. Original, funny and quirky with the added bonus of mysteries to solve, I found it very enjoyable to watch.

My favorite episode, A Singing Showdown has a mystery and a shocking outcome. Hilariously funny with great music, this show down wants to see who will rule the planet.

The colorful characters resemble real teenagers. Real geniuses who think outside of the box, they create new and cool ideas to save people, creatures and their planet. My favorite character has to be Alisa because she shows girl power, humor and her potential as a great best friend. She rises to the occasion whenever there danger lurks.

The voiceovers actors truly match the emotions and voices of real teenagers. Each character has its own unique voice and characteristics, which match their avatar. This makes the film very believable.

The Truenox, which they rescue in the first episode The Mysteries of the Last Truenox, has to be the cutest pet that I could hug for days. He turns out to be an alien that helps Alisa and her friends on their adventures. Comical almost to a fault, he adds humor to the series which made me laugh a lot. Just one smile from him and I found myself smiling back.

Their adventures have many learning lessons including: The power of friendship is greater than anything; You should not judge people or animals based on their looks; Personality and their true hearts are better traits then just good looks.

The colorful animation has amazing details. I felt as if I lived in the future and could actually live on this futuristic planet. The animated people feel like they are real. I found this an amusing place that I would enjoy being a part of. Flying cars and boots would be amazing to own. The unusual design of the different gadgets and modes of transportation add to the futuristic feel of this movie. All of the space aliens look peculiar and plausible.

I recommend this film for ages 6 to 15 because of its cuteness, bright animation and easy to follow storyline. I give this movie 5 out of 5 galactic stars.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Runtime: 110 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: DVD
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN is based on the incredible true story of the Beam family. When Christy (Jennifer Garner) discovers her 10-year-old daughter Anna (Kylie Rogers) has a rare, incurable disease, she becomes a ferocious advocate for her daughter's healing as she searches for a solution. After Anna has a freak accident, an extraordinary miracle unfolds in the wake of her dramatic rescue that leaves medical specialists mystified, her family restored and their community inspired. Starring Jennifer Garner, Kylie Rogers and Martin Henderson
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Whether your are religious or not, this film speaks about the power of faith and perseverance. Jennifer Garner plays the mom and, as the only high profile star, definitely lends a credible performance that pulls the whole film together. Kylie Rogers who plays the young girl also delivers a believable performance that brought a tear to my eye more than once. Martin Henderson plays the dad with great conviction as do the performances of Brighton Sharbino and Courtney Fansler who portray Anna's sisters. The rural Texas setting, the scenes inside the church and around the Beams home all seem very authentic. Eugenio Derbez steals the show with his portrayal of Dr. Nurko, a slightly kooky yet brilliant pediatrician who tackles the most difficult cases. I took my husband to see this with me and we both needed a small box of tissues to deal with the tragic circumstances. But, there is a happy ending and it renewed my faith in miracles. Highly recommended.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love this movie! Miracles from Heaven is very inspirational, very religious and all about miracles. It really makes you think about all the miracles that are happening in your life.

Miracles from Heaven is about a young girl named Anna Beam (Kylie Rogers) who has a very rare stomach disorder. Her family pulls out all the stops to help her. When an amazing event happens it changes everything.

This is a real story and it is very heartwarming. The Beam family's faith in God is undeniable. They are very religious and go to church every Sunday. Even if you are not really religious, I still think that you would enjoy this movie.

All of the characters in Miracles from Heaven are likable, but especially Christy Beam (Jennifer Garner). She is very believable and makes you feel really sad when she is sad and happy when she is happy. She is a mom that a lot of people would want to have as their own, because she would never give up and she works very hard. The dad, Kevin Beam (Martin Henderson) is a very good dad and cares a lot about his kids.

My favorite character is Dr. Nurko (Eugenio Derbez). He is very funny and he works very hard to make all the kids in the hospital happy. And if I was ever really sick I would want a doctor like him.

My favorite scene is at the end of the movie where it is showing all the miracles that happen in their lives. This scene really makes you think about what miracles could be happening to you and it makes you feel great about other people around you.

The moral of the story is never to give up on hope. Even though Anna struggles and she ends up in the hospital many times, her family never gives up and tries to help her. You learn to love Anna and root for her along the way. This movie made a lot of people in the audience cry and tear up.

I rate Miracles from Heaven five out of five stars because it is very inspirational and it makes you really think about what miracles you could be having in your life. I recommend the ages 7 to 18 because there are some surgical procedures, but they're not that graphic. Go see this movie on March 16 in theaters near you.

Reviewed by Mia A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


ZOOTOPIA

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
ZOOTOPIA       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WALT DISNEY ANIMATED STUDIOS
Series: ANIMATED FEATURE, AGES 3-12
Topic - Family
Description - From the largest elephant to the smallest shrew, the city of Zootopia is a mammal metropolis where various animals live and thrive. When Judy Hopps becomes the first rabbit to join the police force, she quickly learns how tough it is to enforce the law. Determined to prove herself, Judy jumps at the opportunity to solve a mysterious case. Unfortunately, that means working with Nick Wilde, a wily fox who makes her job even harder. Starring the voice talent of Ginnifer Goodwin, Jason Bateman and Idris Elba.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - From our friends at Walt Disney Animation comes Zootopia, the story about a city of anthropomorphic animals where a fugitive con artist fox and a rookie bunny cop must work together to uncover a conspiracy. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Mia A. comments, "I thoroughly enjoyed Disney's Zootopia because the animation took me into a beautiful world just like ours, but completely filled with animals." Tre'ana H. chimes in with, "I really adored this film because it is very different from any ordinary film. The characters belong to the zoo animals' collection. It is hilarious because all the animals act like humans and engage in everyday, normal conversations like we do." See their full reviews in the kid comments section.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I thoroughly enjoyed Disney's Zootopia because the animation took me into a beautiful world just like ours, but completely filled with animals.

Zootopia is about a bunny named Judy (Ginnifer Goodwin) who grew up on a carrot farm. Judy always wanted to be a cop when she grew up even though she is a bunny and bunnies do not become policemen. She goes to police training and then becomes a cop in Zootopia.

Zootopia is a land where all different types of animals, prey and predators, live together in peace. When Judy gets to Zootopia she is not taken seriously as a Bunny Cop, so Judy has to finish a case in 48 hours or else she resign. She teams up with a fox named Nick (Jason Bateman) to help figure out the case. Will she get taken seriously as a cop and finish the case? You'll have to watch it to find out.

My favorite character in Zootopia is Nick, a clever, funny and mischievous fox. Nick got lots of laughs from the audience and I learned to care about him after his back story was revealed.

My favorite scene is with the sloths. Judy and Nick go to check a license plate and all the workers at the DMV are sloths. The main sloth named Flash (Raymond S. Persi) says everything slowly. Judy is in a big rush and to make the process even slower, Nick tells Flash a joke. This is one of the funniest scenes that got lots of laughs from the audience.

The film's animation is incredible. It's filled with lots of color and creative, minute details. In one scene, Judy travels through the different zones of Zootopia and, in the rainforest zone, it starts raining and the rain hits the train. This scene is filled with detailed colors and light.

Zootopia is a mystery movie, but it is also a comedy. The mystery part of this movie could be scary to little kids because there are dark scenes with intense action and it shows some animals going savage.

There are a couple scenes with nude animals. This isn't that bad because it only shows animals without clothes on. It is funny though because the animals freak out even though, in real life, animals are always "nude".

I rate this movie a 4.5 out of 5 stars because there are some scenes little kids might find scary but everything has a reason even if it doesn't seem important at the time. Since this is a Disney movie, some parents might think it is good for all ages. But, I recommend it for kids age 6 to 15 because of the fear factor. If your kids like mysteries and dark scenes then, that won't be a problem. Go see Disney's Zootopia in theaters near you when it opens March 4.

Reviewed by Mia A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11. Be sure to check out Mia's interview with Animation supervisor Kira Lehtomaki.

I really adored this film because it is very different from any ordinary film. The characters belong to the zoo animals' collection. It is hilarious because all the animals act like humans and engage in everyday, normal conversations like we do. Directors, Byron Howard and Rich Moore have delivered a creative and amazing story filled with imagination.

In the city of Zootopia the animals live a diversified life. They all get along with each other until a plague hits some of the animals and they start to be aggressive with each other. A fugitive con artist / fox named Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman) and a rookie bunny cop named Judy Hoops, (Ginnifer Godwin) work together to uncover the conspiracy that is taking over their city. You will not believe the deception that is taking place.

My most memorable scene is when the bunny first goes to Zootopia. I liked this part best because, when she is on the train, you see the entire city of Zootopia. It made me feel like I was part of the scene touring Zootopia with Judy. This section of the filmzootopia.d.jpg shows each part of the city and reveals all the different scenery in each section. This is the coolest scene and is so beautifully detailed.

The setting of this story made me feel like I wanted to be a part of this world of Zootopia. The colors are very bright and it looks like an amusement park with plenty of animals.

The moral message of this film is that you should never let anyone bring you down or stop you from being the person you want to be. People may try to break you down, but you can't let them. You can be whatever you want to be in this world of freedom.

I recommend Zootopia for ages 6 to 18 and I give it 5 out of 5 Stars because it is child friendly, hilarious, exciting and everyone will enjoy it. This movie opens in theaters Friday, March 4, 2016 so go check it out, you will not be disappointed.

Reviewed by Tre'ana H., age 12.

Video editing by Miles DeVesty

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 3-15
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


SMART-EZE: MINUTES A DAY, MATH, ENGLISH AND READING COMPREHENSION

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SMART-EZE: MINUTES A DAY, MATH, ENGLISH AND READING COMPREHENSION       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
FAT RED COUCH
Series: APP, AGES 5-12
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - Smart-EZE apps are designed for review of Math, English Grammar, and Reading Comprehension materials learned during the previous school year, for grades 1-5. The first Smart-EZE lesson is free for a single subject and grade level of your choice. Available for iOS, Android and Kindle tablets. http://fatredcouch.com/products/smart-eze-math-english-and-reading-comprehension-summer-review/
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is an intuitive app that is designed to help students, ages 5-12 review and expand upon concepts they learn in school. In my experience with the app, I noticed that it has a well designed user interface that is easy to navigate and is pleasant to look at. There are three subject areas that the app covers: Math, English and Reading. These subjects are covered in sections that each contain questions that will challenge the user to think deeper, to solve problems and to interpret reading. The user can also select the grade level content they wish to work with, making it easy to tailor the experience to individual needs. I believe children will enjoy learning on this app because of its fun style and the fact that it offers rewards for users based on how hard they work. Overall, I believe it is a great example of meeting KIDS FIRST! criteria, but there are a few negatives that I should address. First, I experienced some performance issues, my app was laggy and slow. Secondly, there is not very much sound in the app, which is strange for an app with such a good visual style. Despite those drawbacks, this is a very solid app, which is why I give it 4 stars out of 5.

This app has great exercises in the three subject areas I mentioned above, the obvious benefit is that it is a useful tool for elementary and middle school aged kids to review and expand upon what they learn in class. There are lots of tools that track the user's progress and there is a handy level selector that the user uses to pick up where they left off. Users are also allowed to go back and fix mistakes before moving on.

This app has graphics and colors that help to refine the experience and increase its appeal. Reading, English and math skills are taught in a series of questions. Reading skills require investigation and understanding of passages that are given, the user then has to answer questions about the reading. Math is taught using a more standard approach: multiple choice or write-in questions. English questions require users to complete tasks such as correcting mistakes and defining words. The app has an easily navigable user interface with colored buttons and directions; as well as large, easy to read fonts. I do believe a child would enjoy this because of the fun and colorful design of the app, and because there are periodic rewards for the completion of goals. REviewed by Michael O., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This learning tool is perfect for school-aged kids and I love that it's not boring like a lot of other educational apps I have tried. The main reason for that is the way it awards you digital medals depending on how well you perform. I love getting medals! It made me want to keep playing so I could get more. I wished they used this app in schools. I would look forward to it every day. Parents who prefer only educational games for their kids should definitely check this app out.

Smart-EZE has three different categories: math, reading and writing. Each section asks you a series of questions. Sometimes you have multiple choice answers to choose from and sometimes you have to write in your own answer. I like the reading sections best because the stories are all very funny. I had a trickier time with math because, even though I was playing at my grade level, there were some math concepts I had never seen before and didn't understand. It might be a good idea to make sure your kids know that the app covers lots of different materials and concepts and they might not know all of them. It all just depends what they have covered in school.

Another part that I like is that you are able to go back and repeat questions that you missed until you get them right. Also, Smart-EZE has a parent mode that allows parents to check on their kid's progress and see how many questions they got right or wrong. The only part that bothered me is that the app seemed a little laggy when I played. This was particularly noticeable when using the note pad and watching animation.

I recommend this for kids ages 8 to 12. I rate this app 4 out of 5 stars because it is lots of fun, but the lag is a little frustrating.

Reviewed by Miles Tallia, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: App


HOLIDAY AND EVERYDAY SONGS

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
HOLIDAY AND EVERYDAY SONGS
HAP-PAL MUSIC, INC.
Series: AUDIO CD FOR AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - This is a collection of songs about holidays throughout the year combined with songs about special things that happen every day. Included songs for Martin Luther King Day, Valentines Day, Chinese New Year, Halloween, Fourth of July, Cinco de Mayo, Christmas and more.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - At last count Hap Palmer has written over a million songs - most people will be too lazy to fact check that fact. It's an election year. I elect Mr. Palmer to the Kids Music Hall of Fame alongside Mister Rogers another bastion of children's rights even when they're wrong sometime and need a hug and a cup of musical cocoa. 'Holiday and Everyday Songs' is a 19-song extravaganza of musical styles and feel good candy kisses that will have mom and dad dancing in Neolithic ways and kids downright digging the tunes and sharing and learning different cultural celebrations and appreciations. This album is memorable! Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Music Judge.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Hap Palmer Holiday and Everyday Songs is fun to listen to. We like the music and the singing. The singing is not like other songs. The songs have expression and feelings. We especially like the song Witches' Brew. The words are so fun and it's catchy. That song gets stuck in your head all day. We love it! It's our favorite. We also like the song Scamper a lot. We think other kids would like this CD because it's really fun!
Runtime: 90 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.95
Media: AUDIO


GOOD DINOSAUR, THE (BR/DIGI HD)

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
GOOD DINOSAUR, THE (BR/DIGI HD)       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WALT DISNEY ANIMATED STUDIOS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - From Disney/Pixar comes a hilariously heartwarming adventure about the power of confronting and overcoming your fears and discovering who you're meant to be. In this epic journey into the world of dinosaurs, an Apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend. While traveling through a harsh and mysterious landscape, Arlo learns the power of confronting his fears and discovers what he's truly capable of. Bonus content includes: Sanjay's Super Team; True Lies About Dinosaurs; Every Part of the Dinosaur; Following the T-Rex Trail; The Filmmakers' Journey; Deleted Scenes; Just Listen; Commentary; Hide and Seek; and more.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Good Dinosaur, which comes out on Blu-ray and Digital HD on Feb. 23, asks the question: What if the asteroid that forever changed life on Earth missed the planet completely and giant dinosaurs never became extinct? In this epic journey into the world of dinosaurs, an Apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend and learns the power of confronting his fears and discovers what he is truly capable of. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Ryan R. (age 11) comments, "I like how it touches our emotions and admit that it made me cry in some parts. I also liked the jokes because they are really funny." Willie J. (age 16) adds, "It is some of the most beautiful animation I've seen with a story so familiar that its heartwarming qualities hit home." KIDS FIRST! Adult reviewer added, "It was way too scary for my 4 and 5-year-olds." See the kids' reviews in the kid comments section.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I really enjoy watching the new Blu-ray of The Good Dinosaur. One thing I loved about this Blu-ray is the deleted scenes. I love how the director explains why certain scenes didn't make it in the final cut. I enjoyed the Dino bites, which is a short showing the characters goofing off. I also enjoyed watching the trailers of The Good Dinosaur in different languages. It was interesting knowing that there are different names for this movie in other places. There was nothing to dislike about this Blu-ray.

This 3D, computer-animated, adventure, dramatic comedy is very emotional and funny, a perfect movie for the family. The story is about what would happen if an asteroid missed the Earth and never killed the dinosaurs. In the movie you meet Arlo (Raymond Ochoa) who is a very insecure, scared dinosaur until he is able to find his roar! He meets a human kid named Spot. Something happens. Arlo chases Spot and falls into the water taking Arlo very far away from his family. Will Arlo make it back to his family or will he be lost?

I enjoyed this movie. I like how it touches our emotions and admit that it made me cry in some parts. I also liked the jokes because they are really funny. I love the action scenes that involve the water. It kept me on the edge of my seat.

My favorite character is Arlo. He is a very ecstatic, extremely compassionate dinosaur who learns to face his fears. Arlo is very relatable because everyone has fears and people think it is silly but it isn't. I love that he is very motivated. I love how he changes throughout the story.

The moral lesson in this movie is you can discover what you're truly capable of if you are willing to face your fears. Arlo proves that in this movie as he "finds his roar." On the Blu-ray, there are bonus features, deleted scenes and shorts. The shorts include Sanjay Super Team, Dino Bites and Hide and Seek. It also tells you facts about dinosaurs and many more. Another feature are trailers of the movie. My favorite short would be Sanjay's Super Team, because this short told its story without any dialogue and delivered an important message about dealing with old family traditions and the modern world.

I give this film 5 out of 5 amazing stars and recommend it for kids ages 5 to 18. Adults might like this as well. I also recommend this to kids who like family, action, adventure, drama, comedies, dinosaurs and Disney movies. Check out the Blu-ray when it comes out on February 23.
Runtime: 94 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 39.99
Media: Video and DVD
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


SUNNY DAY

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
SUNNY DAY
CHENXIN YANG
Series: COLLEGE STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - A 2D animation depicting a sweet moment of the old lady use magic comforting the sad little boy.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This short animated film is very interesting. Something about the story is extremely compelling, as simple as it is. The 2 D animation is delightful. The music plays to the simplicity of the art form. The story is so simple and yet, could be interpreted in many very complex ways. Over all, I adored this. I would definitely consider it for a youth or family film festival and would definitely watch more by this filmmaker. Reviewed by Megan C. KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 1 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Video and DVD


FIRST LOVE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
FIRST LOVE
NICHOLAS RAGANATO
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-15
Topic - Family
Description - Daniel, a ten-year-old student wants to give his valentine card to his girlfriend Sammy, but the evil teacher Ms. Ruth takes it away, treating the kids to tell their parents. Now it is upon to Daniel to get it back for the sake of their love.

Featured at Wellington Film Festival (2016), United International Film Festival (2016, Recognition of Excellence in filmmaking), New Classic Cinema Film Festival (Best Supporting Actress, Linda Weinrib), iHolly: The Next Generation Independent Film Festival (Best Student Film)
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is a sweet love story between two school-aged kids whose antagonist is an "evil" teacher. It's well shot, well lit, good audio and nice background music. It would fit well into a youth film festival and evoke questions about when it is okay to challenge authority. For me, I wanted a bit more at the end. I wanted to see these two together as adults, or something. But, it is charming and sweet as it is. Recommended.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 6 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-15
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Video and DVD


GIFT, THE (KEN PETRIE)

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
GIFT, THE (KEN PETRIE)
KEN PETRIE
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - To celebrate his eleventh birthday, a young boy selects his gift - little knowing that his choice will change the world.

Director's statement: THE GIFT is a unique short film in that, not only does it have commercial potential, but its huge global resonance means that it has an inordinately large audience. In this regard, the film is a statement as to what's possible in British short film.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The ending makes this film! I can't tell you what it is but, I do promise you it will bring a smile to your face. This short film takes place in rural America in the 1940s. The setting, costumes, and behaviors of the characters are right on target and the pace is so appropriate for this time period. It brings up some interesting issues when the boy spots a rifle in the local store that he eyes as the perfect gift for his birthday. There is a bit of tension between Mom and Boy and it is the elderly shop owner who intervenes and makes peace with everyone. Well shot, good pace, interesting story. I think you'll like it. Highly recommended. Ages: 8-18
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 13 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Video and DVD


PLACES YOU'LL GO, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
PLACES YOU'LL GO, THE       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
JESSE SALAZAR III
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - An 8 year old's adventure across America. Director, Jesse Salazar III is an independent Texas filmmaker that has made an impact on the South Texas film and journalism community. Since 2009, he has worked in virtually every area of digital video and cinema production, winning the accolades and approval of his peers and mentors along the way.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - A lovingly created film documenting a young boy's experience traveling across America as he is observed by his own father. His fondness for LEGOs which he brings everywhere is a nice touch. Well filmed, good audio, good visuals. Would make a nice addition for a kids or family film festival.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 21 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Video and DVD


SNOW WHITE & THE SEVEN DWARFS (BLU-RAY/DIGITAL HD)

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SNOW WHITE & THE SEVEN DWARFS (BLU-RAY/DIGITAL HD)       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS HOME ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FEATURE, AGES 4-18
Topic - Family
Description - Forever enchanting and inspiring, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs embodies The Walt Disney Signature Collection's legacy of animation. In this epic story of love and friendship, the kind and beautiful princess SNOW WHITE wins the hearts of the Seven Dwarfs and triumphs over the evil plans of a wicked Queen. Share the movie called "The Greatest Animated Film Of All Time," in High Definition Blu-ray and for the first time ever on Digital HD, with special features for the entire family!

Special Features include: In Walt's Words - For The First Time Ever, Hear Walt Talk About Snow White; Iconography - Explore How This Film Influences Pop Culture, Art And Fashion at Disney Animation: Designing Disney's First Princess - Modern-Day; Disney Artists Discuss The Design Of Snow White and how it influences the look of some of your favorite Disney characters; The Fairest Facts Of Them All - Disney Channel Star Sofia Carson Reveals Seven Intriguing Facts About Snow White; Alternate Sequence - Never Before Seen Storyboard Sequence Where The Prince Meets Snow White; And Much More!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - One of the hardships I encounter as a KIDS FIRST! Film Critic is trying to objectively review older films. The difficulty is mostly because they are often better than many films today. Even more difficult is reviewing a film objectively that was a part of my childhood. It's so easy for nostalgia to cloud my view. So, before I watched Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, I told myself to review it without passion or prejudice, and tackle it like I would any other film. Then I started watching it and everything I had prepped myself for went out the window. I got caught up in the songs, the vintage style of animated filmmaking and the general feeling of classic, feel-good Disney. Then I realized that the nostalgia that befell me WAS the appeal of the movie. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is timeless because it transcends generations. Watching it now as I did ten years ago, took me back 10 years. It felt nice to return to an innocent state for 80 minutes.

The film hasn't lost anything. The songs are still just as catchy, the story is still just as cute and the animation still puts a smile on your face. It's interesting watching the first Disney animated feature today, because we're all so taken with the animation and maturity of Pixar. Even the Disney Renaissance films which are now 20 years old aren't as cute or innocent as Snow White is. Fortunately, that's not a bad thing; it's actually quite refreshing. It's feel-good and puts a smile on your face. The simplicity of it all is a great contrast to the complex animated features of today and it's quite affecting. It transports you to a different state of mind that allows you to let go and enjoy.

So many times parodied and adapted, watching where it all started gives you a great appreciation for all the other adaptations, and reminds you of which is best. I actually contend that Snow White is the best of the classic Disney princesses. It has the best collection of songs with "Heigh-Ho," "Some Day My Prince Will Come," and "I'm Wishing/One Song." The band of dwarfs are still an entertaining, eclectic group of characters than compliment the more one-dimensional princess. I watched it with my younger sister and she was in love with it from start to finish. I was in love with it, all over again, from start to finish. I recommend this classic film for ages 3 to 18 as well as adults and give it 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Willie J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16.

Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs is a Disney favorite of mine since I was a young child many years ago. It is such an enchanting story of friendship, love and good prevailing over evil. I enjoyed watching this again on Digital HD. This is truly an enchanting classic that young and old will enjoy and I recommend for both adults and children. The music and the characters really make this film! I found myself singing along with such songs as "Hi Ho, Hi Ho off to work I go." It has a message that good wins over evil and is entertainment at its finest. I also was delighted to see deleted scenes included in the Bonus Features. I give this one 5 out of 5 stars and recommend for ages 6 to 18. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Before Cinderella lost her slipper and before Aladdin met the Genie, Walt Disney did his most crazy and insane project ever - a feature animated movie, the first of its kind. The title of the film is Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Parents and kids loved this film decades ago and, a generation later, families can now enjoy this beautiful classic in Blu-Ray.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is a musical with catchy, and beautiful singing done by Adriana Caselotti, (Snow White), Lucille La Verne (Queen) and others. There is also a sense of adventure, and a magical romance, between Snow White and the Prince.

The story begins when the Queen discovers that she is not the fairest of them all, and that Snow White is. Out of jealousy, she orders the death of Snow White. However, Snow White gets away. She comes upon 7 dwarfs which she befriends. The Queen angrily learns about her failed death, and decides to poison the young princess!

Since this is the Blu-Ray/Digital HD Edition of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, it is packed with extra features including a tour of the animation studios in the 1930s, actual interviews with Walt Disney, cool facts, (Did you know Snow White was originally designed to have gold hair? Who knew!) and so much more. My favorite part concentrates on how Walt Disney hired over 300 artists, how he spent so much money on making it perfect, and just how much speculation and hate he got for attempting to make (and being very successful as a result) a 90 minute animated film.

Even though this film was made almost a century ago, the quality of the animation is as good as films made today. Hand-drawn animation has a quality of from the human touch that CGI can never achieve. In terms of the soundtrack, Walt Disney had a knack for making his animated films not only have background music, but he created it in such as way that the music becomes an integral part of the story. For example, when Snow White and the Prince first meet, they sing a song together and it represents almost, "Instant love," better than words ever could. This story is based on a classic European fairy tale, and Walt Disney hired a few people who specifically made European-styled drawings, to make the film feel like the original fairy tale, which was perfect for the film. The voice-over sound quality is also top notch, amazingly so since again, it was made almost 100 years ago. I would easily compare it to the voice over acting and quality of the late 90s. This film was ambitious in terms of being the first animated feature film, but also was first feature film to have a female lead.

My favorite scene is the meeting of The Prince and Snow White. In the scene, Snow White is cleaning outside and she explains to her bird friends what a wishing well is. A prince overhears her fantastic singing and is love-struck when he meets her. This scene is one of my favorites because the music is beautiful, the animation is spectacular and this scene specifically illustrates my point about European artists designing the backgrounds. It really looks like a European castle of some sort.

This film was designed for all ages and I still agree. I recommend it for ages 6 to 13 specifically. Younger kids will enjoy the bright colors, dancing and singing. Older kids can appreciate how difficult it was to make this film and the storyline itself. Adults who have happy memories of seeing this film years ago will also enjoy it. Overall, it's a great film for the family. I rate it 5 out of 5 stars because of the spectacular animation, exciting story (typical of films made by Walt Disney) and clear voice acting. The Blu-ray/Digital HD Edition of Snow White is available in stores and online on January 19.
Runtime: 83 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 29.99
Media: Video and DVD


KUNG FU PANDA 3

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
KUNG FU PANDA 3       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX FILM CORPORATION
Series: FEATURE 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Continuing his "legendary adventures of awesomeness", Po must face two hugely epic, but different threats: one supernatural and the other a little closer to his home.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - In this third film of the series, Po (Jack Black) is reunited with his long-lost father and must overcome self-doubt and transition from student to teacher to defeat a powerful supernatural villain. Along the way, lessons are imparted about the importance of teamwork and finding one's personal goals and talents in life. The animation is top-notch, there is humor throughout, some key martial arts aspects are touched upon, and the story is far more interesting than its predecessor. But it lacks the freshness of the first film and has a certain dullness to the storytelling.

One of the main themes of the film is finding your goal in life and what it is you are good at and using that for the greater social good. The animation is top-notch, most especially in details such as water and fast movements. The screen is essentially splashed with color throughout making for a visually appealing feast.

A major sequence involves Po rising to the occasion to teach his fellow pandas how to fight. The violence is cartoonish and the main theme is teamwork and finding one's goal in life. From very young to very old, Po encourages his fellow pandas to find their particular talents that they can contribute to the fight to save the world from the villain.

The main characters treat each other with respect and even love (except of course for the heroes versus the villain) maybe even to the point of the film feeling rather soft and boring. The conflict between the main characters that drive much of the plot of the first film is completely missing here. One scene involves a flirtatious female panda but the adult nature of the humor is kept in check. It borders on adult but refrains from going there.

Many children will be familiar with the first two films and enjoy spending time again with the main character Po (voiced by Jack Black). They may enjoy the story line of Po being reunited with his father after many years. However, the film (as in the previous one) touches on the loss of the mother and that may be distressing to very young children. Also, this film, like Kung Fu Panda 2, is just not that funny. The first one was far superior to either sequel. The visuals are exciting and there are some good action sequences. There are humorous bits throughout without the humor going too adult. While adults may find it occasionally dull, children should be entertained and amused throughout.

Reviewed by Michael F, KIDS FIRST! juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Kung Fu Panda 3 is a great film with excellent animation, a great villain and hilarious humor. My favorite dumpling-loving panda is back. I liked this movie because it was a lot of fun and it still has a captivating plot even though it's a sequel. I also really like the new villain. He was so evil and greedy, it made me want to SKIDOOSH! him so bad.

As you can see, I am a big fan of this franchise and I promise you this latest installment does not disappoint. Kung Fu Panda 3 is about Po figuring out who he wants to be and adapting to a lot of changes in his life. As the movie begins, Master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman) tells Po that next to being the Dragon Warrior, it will be Po's job to teach the Furious Five. Before Po can learn how to be a teacher, he meets his long-lost father Li (Bryan Cranston). Their celebration is cut short by the arrival of Kai (J.K Simmons), the villain who is stealing the energy of Kung Fu masters from all over the land and who wants to destroy Po. To fight back, Po has to learn to master being a panda after he finds out pandas have special powers that might be able to help defeat Kai.

The lesson of this film is figure out who want you to be and then be your best self, even if you have to try new things you don't know how to do. Po has to try to figure out how to live like a panda and become a teacher by trying things he's not good at.

It's nice to see the original characters back and it's hard to pick a villain as a favorite character, but Kai is an excellent bad guy that I love to hate. He is surprisingly funny while being Po's most formidable foe so far.

I love the animation because it uses a lot of different styles. There is a lot of detail. It's very colorful and the animators use Chinese calligraphy and other cultural symbols to give the movie's setting an authentic feeling. I also really enjoyed the score by Hans Zimmer because it has a lot of energy that goes perfectly with the high-action scenes.

I recommend this film for ages 4 to 12 because there are some scary scenes that may upset younger viewers. Adults will also enjoy this film. I give Kung Fu Panda 3 four out of five stars.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., age 10.

In the third installment of the popular family film series Kung Fu Panda, you will find yourself on an emotional roller coaster, with just enough action, comedy and love to go around.

Large and adorable panda Po (Jack Black) realizes he has a lot to learn if he wants to surpass his next obstacle from his role-model instructor. During this long, adventurous process, he finds himself reunited with his long-lost father (Bryan Cranston). Po must find a way to morph into the teacher he was always destined to be. With help from his new panda family, the martial-arts masters come together to fight the envious and malevolent Kai (J.K. Simmons), a warrior who came back from the spirit realm, in order to steal everyone's chi.

I have always been a kid at heart but watching this film truly made me feel like it was my first time ever watching Kung Fu Panda in the movie theater. Since it brought back a ton of memories, I couldn't help but notice all of the fantastic, quality changes the film has gone through. This has always been a great series from the start, but this movie takes the gold when it comes down to storyline and visual effects. There is no doubt in my mind that the creative directors and graphic designers behind this film spent tons and tons of hours developing such amazing oriental scenes within this movie. Every single color, movement, saying or setting in this film truly embodies what Kung Fu Pand" is all about, which makes the meaning and experience for an avid movie-goer all the more understanding and worthwhile. Because of the sincere storyline, it will hit home to lots of viewers and family members. One thing I do wish I had the opportunity to see more of are the famous and Furious Five (voiced by Jackie Chan, Lucy Liu, Angelina Jolie, David Cross, and Seth Rogen) and Master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman) in action altogether, especially when attempting to defeat the evil Kai.

Ultimately, Kung Fu Panda 3 is a hilarious and charming film for everyone in the family to enjoy. Whether it's moving you to tears from laughter or gloominess, you'll find it hard not to smile with satisfaction when the credits begin rolling. This movie is rated PG for its martial arts action and some mild rude humor, so I think this will be just perfect for kids ages 5 to 18. I rate this film 4.5 out of 5 five stars.

Reviewed by Michelle C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17

This film rocks! It holds nothing back as it is full of adventures that are fun and full of heart. This third film of the awesome Kung Fu Panda series has us once again rooting for the most loveable Panda, Po. Watching Po in this movie is like watching myself because of his endless enthusiasm and passion for life which is just like me! He's silly, funny and clumsy and still able to save the day!

We find Po battling a villain, discovering his true father and discovering his true self. The villain, Kai, wants to take the chi from all the great Kung Fu masters so he can become the most powerful grand master of the world. Kai will stop at nothing and the only possible way to defeat him is Po. Po must channel his inner chi and confidence to stop Kai.

Part of Po's adventure is set in Panda Village where the student must learn how to become the teacher. For the first time Po meets other pandas. He changes this panda community and they also change him. Also, with the help of his mentor Shifu and the Furious Five, Po learns what it is to overcome challenges and become his own hero. At the heart of the story is the lesson that what is important in life is to become the best you can be. Po finally realizes this.

My favorite part of this film is when Po meets his real dad, Li. This occurs in his adoptive father's restaurant when Li breaks Po's dumpling eating record. This is both a touching and yet hilarious scene as everyone in the restaurant realizes that they are father and son except them.

While all the voices are amazing and perfectly match the characters I really like Jack Black's voice as Po. I really can't think of any other actor's voice better for this role than Jack's. Po's look, personality and most importantly his soul is just totally Jack Black. I also love J. K. Simmons who voices the villain, Kai. His voice is so perfectly evil yet it also has this lack of confidence in it that can make you giggle at times. For instance, Kai considers himself very special and famous but when he escapes the Spirit World and arrives on earth he finds that no one has ever even heard of him.

There are many wonderful and positive messages in this film. One of my favorites message is that you have to believe in yourself and never give up. Another beautiful message from the film is that you are not alone in this world and that family is important. However, the message that stands out in my mind is when Shifu tells Po: "If you only do what you can you will only be what you are." This means a lot to me because I think everyone is special and we all have something very special to offer and bring to the world.

Reviewed by Abigail Zoe L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 8

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


EDDIE THE EAGLE

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
EDDIE THE EAGLE       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX FILM CORPORATION
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Inspired by true events, Eddie the Eagle is a feel-good story about Michael "Eddie" Edwards (Taron Egerton), an unlikely but courageous British ski-jumper who never stopped believing in himself - even as an entire nation was counting him out. With the help of a rebellious and charismatic coach (played by Hugh Jackman), Eddie takes on the establishment and wins the hearts of sports fans around the world by making an improbable and historic showing at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics. From producers of Kingsman: The Secret Service, Eddie the Eagle stars Taron Egerton as Eddie, the loveable underdog with a never say die attitude.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Inspired by true events, Eddie the Eagle is a feel-good story about Michael "Eddie" Edwards (Taron Egerton), an unlikely but courageous British ski jumper who never stopped believing in himself - even as an entire nation was counting him out. With the help of a rebellious and charismatic coach (played by Hugh Jackman), Eddie takes on the establishment and wins the hearts of sports fans around the world by making an improbable and historic showing at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Ryan R. comments, "I was truly delighted to watch the new film, Eddie the Eagle because it is an astoundingly energizing and powerful film." Mia A. adds, "I absolutely love Eddie the Eagle! This... is an inspiring movie because Eddie is just a regular guy who does amazing things. It makes people like me who watch this movie feel like they could do anything!" See their full reviews in youth comments.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I absolutely love Eddie the Eagle! This film, directed by Dexter Fletcher, is an inspiring movie because Eddie is just a regular guy who does amazing things. It makes people like me who watch this movie feel like they could do anything!

Eddie the Eagle is based on a true story about a boy named Michael Edwards, known as Eddie (Taron Egerton) who grew up in Great Britain in the 1960s. Eddie always wanted to be in the Olympics, but he had weak knees so all his doctors said not to do sports and to give up. Regardless of his doctor's advice, he tried lots of sports, but never successfully did any of them right. When he goes to his dad's work after giving up on this dream he sees a ski slope. From then on, Eddie is determined to get into the Winter Olympics. When he fails to get on the Great Britain downhill ski team for the Olympics, he learns about ski jumping. As there are no ski jumping locations in Great Britain, he travels to Germany. There he tries to learn ski jumping in order to get into the Olympics. He meets a former Olympic ski jumper, Bronson Peary (Hugh Jackman) and tries to get Bronson to coach him. Will Eddie get to the Olympics, get Bronson to coach or win the Olympics?

My favorite scene is when Eddie sets a new distance jumping record and he flaps around like an eagle and has the best time of his life. This scene is uplifting and funny.

The cinematography in Eddie the Eagle is really intense and makes you feel as if you are right there! Whenever someone gets ready to go down the ski jump ramp and lands, you feel like cheering!

There are lots of morals in this movie including: follow your dreams, winning isn't always achieving, never give up on your dreams, when you love what you do giving up is never the answer, and many more.

I rate this movie a 5 out of 5 stars because it is inspiring and has a gripping story. I recommend it for ages 8 to 18 because there are some sexual references, like when Bronson makes an imitation of making love with a celebrity. There are also some injuries, like when someone tries to ski jump they fall and hurt themselves badly they can't move.

If you love adventure, and rooting for the underdog, go see Eddie the Eagle in theatres near you!

Reviewed by Mia A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I was truly delighted to watch the new film, Eddie the Eagle because it is an astoundingly energizing and powerful film. I love to watch films based on true stories and this is an unquestionably good one. In this film, you will see the story of Michael "Eddie" Edwards, an Olympic British ski jumper and learn how his determination enabled him to participate in the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics.

This movie tells the story of Eddie the Eagle (Taron Egerton) and shows the tough obstacles that Eddie overcame to achieve his dream of participating in the Olympics.

I love how this movie doesn't feel rushed. I love the casting. Taron Egerton looks identical to real Eddie and plays him with conviction. Hugh Jackman also gives a great performance. Jo Hartley, who plays Eddie's mom, gives a stunning performance of a mother who supports her child's dreams no matter what. The 80s soundtrack also plays an important role in the movie, since it is the type of music that was around when Eddie made his jump. This year is the 28th anniversary of when he made his ski jump in the 1988 Winter Olympics.

The moral of this movie is never give up no matter what. We see that when individuals don't have faith in Eddie and think his fantasy of setting off to the Olympics is an exercise in senselessness that he would never be capable of achieving. We see how Eddie never gives up. He is persistent, even though people think he is crazy. Eddie never gives up on what he believes in and does his best. Throughout this movie you see Eddie overcome obstacles and he never gives up. This is definitely a good movie for kids to see, especially if they have been put down, taunted, bullied or told they can't do something they love to do. They can benefit from seeing this film.

I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 5 to 18. I think adults will like this film as well. Those who like docudramas and family movies will particularly enjoy it. Look for the story of Eddie the Eagle wh?ich is in theaters now.?

Reviewed by Ryan R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


ZOOLANDER 2

KIDS FIRST QUALIFIED ENDORSEMENT
ZOOLANDER 2       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
PARAMOUNT PICTURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - Derek and Hansel are lured into modeling again, in Rome, where they find themselves the target of a sinister conspiracy. Directed by Ben Stiller; Starring Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson and Penelope Cruz
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This sequel to Zoolander brings back Ben Stiller as Derek joined by Owen Wilson as Hansel who take on the modeling industry again. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Lainey A. comments, "The sequel, Zoolander 2 a live action feature film, sadly does not live up to the standard of its predecessor. The writing is not nearly as funny and the plot rambles." See her full review in youth comments.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Zoolander , directed and co-written by Ben Stiller, was lauded for its clever writing and unthinkable poking fun at the modeling and entertainment industries. The sequel, Zoolander 2 a live action feature film, sadly does not live up to the standard of its predecessor. The writing is not nearly as funny and the plot rambles. While the audience did laugh at times at the over-the-top acting, a lot of jokes just fall flat.

This movie is about Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) who is crazy famous for being the biggest model around. His wife Matilda (played by Stiller's real life wife Christine Taylor) dies in a construction accident leaving their son to be raised by Derek. Sadly, his son is taken away because Derek can't show that he is responsible enough to care for him. Derek and Hansel (Owen Wilson) reunite as friends and decide to participate in a fashion show to prove that Derek is responsible enough to win back his son.

Will Ferrell reprises his role as the antagonist Mugatu and is really funny with his exaggerated appearance and acting. Unfortunately, the loose plot is hard to follow and even Will Ferrell can't salvage this sequel.

This movie has many cameo appearances by Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, Demi Lovato, Katy Perry, Ariana Grande, Willie Nelson and the one and only Justin Bieber. I enjoyed being able to pick out so many of these celebrities but it sometimes is distracting with so many cameos.

My favorite character is Valentina (Pen�lope Cruz) because she is so self-confident and is part of many funny scenes. Pen�lope is fun to watch and super entertaining.

My favorite scene is when Derek and Hansel attend their first fashion show of the movie. They are made a laughing stock on stage while wearing shirts with the words "old" and "lame" which Derek pronounces Lame' and have a huge bucket of prune juice thrown at them in front of many people. The costumes are quite extravagant and interesting and visually entertaining. My favorite costumes are Derek's because they really fit his personality and are over the top.

I give this film 3.5 out of 5 stars because, although it isn't my type of humor, others might enjoy this. It is entertaining despite the fact that many jokes are at the expense of others and some may find that offensive. Zoolander 2 definitely targets teen and older viewers. I recommend this film for ages 10 to 18 because of its mild language, sexual references and crude humor.

If this sounds like the movie for you, definitely go check it out in theaters after it opens February 12, 2016.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


NATIONAL PARKS ADVENTURE

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
NATIONAL PARKS ADVENTURE       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
MACGILLIVRAY FREEMAN FILMS
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 8-18
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - National Parks Adventure takes audiences on the ultimate off-trail adventure into the nation's awe-inspiring great outdoors and untamed wilderness. Immersive IMAX� 3D cinematography takes viewers soaring over red rock canyons, hurtling up craggy mountain peaks and into other-worldly realms found within America's most legendary outdoor playgrounds.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - From MacGillivray/Freeman productions and narrated by Academy Award� winner Robert Redford, National Parks Adventure takes audiences on the ultimate off-trail adventure into the nation's awe-inspiring great outdoors and untamed wilderness. Immersive IMAX� 3D cinematography takes viewers soaring over red rock canyons, hurtling up craggy mountain peaks and into other-worldly realms found within America's most legendary outdoor playgrounds, including Yellowstone, Glacier National Park, Yosemite, and Arches. Celebrate the 100-year anniversary of the national parks with world-class mountaineer Conrad Anker, adventure photographer Max Lowe and artist Rachel Pohl as they hike, climb and explore their way across America's majestic parks in an action-packed expedition that will inspire the adventurer in us all. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Benjamin P. comments, "I found myself even tearing up at the astounding landscapes in our country." See his full review below. National Parks Adventure
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - National Parks Adventure is a new, eye-popping IMAX celebration of the most amazing places in the world. I found myself even tearing up at the astounding landscapes in our country.

Narrated by Robert Redford, National Parks Adventure follows climber Conrad Anker, his stepson Max and their friend Rachel as they explore our National Parks. The film also takes you back in time to witness the camping trip that President Theodore Roosevelt took to Yosemite to see how much it needed to be protected.

National Parks Adventure has magical cinematography and an emotional soundtrack that puts a new spin on American classics such as "This Land Is Your Land." The film balances a lot of stories and still makes the 45-minute film not feel rushed. It will keep your eyes glued to the screen because you will be enthralled in the history of how the park system was born and you'll see the amazing adventures people have exploring the national parks today. It is very cool to see the parks I haven't visited and get a sense of what it's like to be there in real, and even bigger than real, life. I also like seeing the parks that I have visited from the filmmakers' point of view.

My favorite part of the movie is when Conrad, Max and Rachel visit Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. There are shots of them climbing up frozen waterfalls that made me feel like I was right behind them. Another scene I loved was of cute little prairie dogs that IMAX makes look like towering creatures bigger than me.

I really enjoyed the cinematography. Five film crews visited forty parks and took nine months to make this movie. They shot it on 65mm IMAX film. That is a big deal because this will probably be one of the last IMAX films to use large-format celluloid instead of going digital. This movie is also a big deal for the national parks because 2016 marks the centennial of the park system.

National Parks Adventure takes you on an exciting and educational journey. Younger kids may not be able to appreciate the history so the movie is probably best for ages 5 to 15. But all audiences will enjoy this beautiful movie. It is one of the best IMAX movies I have seen.

I give National Parks Adventure 5 out of 5 stars.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


HAIL CAESAR

KIDS FIRST QUALIFIED ENDORSEMENT
HAIL CAESAR       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
UNIVERSAL STUDIOS - THEATRICAL DIVISION
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - Hail Caesar! Follows a day in the life of Eddie Mannix, a Hollywood fixer for Capitol Pictures in the 1950s, who cleans up and solves problems for big names and stars in the industry. But when studio star Baird Whitlock disappears, Mannix has to deal with more than just the fix. Written by Joel and Ethan Coen. Starring Josh Brolin, George Clooney, Alden Ehrenreich.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is a very odd movie. It's primary appeal is to filmophiles I believe but event that stretches it a bit. There is very little in this film to hold your interest. In fact, my husband fell asleep during it and I wish I had. The parodies are very simple and just don't draw you in. My favorite part is probably the water ballet which is stunning. The ending is like the rest of the film - disappointing. The whole communist, black-list plot is flat, flat, flat. I say, spend your money elsewhere. However, there's nothing here to disqualify it for a KIDS FIRST! recommendation and, as you will below, our youth reporter enjoyed it.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - What happens when you mix legendary actors, an original story, smooth and hilarious script and two of the greatest directors of all time, the Coen Brothers? You get Hail, Caesar! - an absolute hilarious masterpiece that I absolutely adore.

This is a comedy that never bores the audience. It is delightfully smooth and original. There are some elements of romance a few times in the film, but not enough to call this film romantic. It has an exciting and original plot, with just a hint of dramatic turns throughout the story. What can be better than a movie about making movies, beautiful sets and intrigues behind the scenes?

The story starts when Baird Whitlock (George Clooney), a famous actor, disappears right before the filming of his final scenes for the movie, Hail, Caesar, where he plays the main character. Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin) is rushed to try to get him back before studio loses a lot of money.

Although the comedy makes the whole audience laugh out loud time and time again, the cinematography is what made me fall in love with the film. The Coen brothers who directed the film, execute mastery with every shot, from aerial to 360 degree views, each shot looks so carefully planned it is perfect for the scene and simply breath taking. The acting also excels with mega stars including George Clooney, Josh Brolin, Scarlett Johansson (DeeAnna Moran) and Channing Tatum. They play their parts as if they are that person and forever have been.

My favorite scene is when we first see Scarlett Johansson. The scene shows her doing a majestic and beautiful swimming show where she and others perform an extravagant number. What I really love about this shot is the camera angles showing everything from the side to the top, showing the scene in a very unexpected and wonderful way. The scene is peaceful and enjoyable and then ends with an abrupt joke (which is perfectly smooth, original and so unexpected).

The comedy is somewhat mature, so I recommend it for kids age thirteen to eighteen. I give it five out of five stars for its excellent comedy, beautiful camera shots and an exciting, yet original story.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


DADDY'S HOME

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
DADDY'S HOME       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
PARAMOUNT PICTURES
Series: FEATURE 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Stepdad, Brad Whitaker, is a radio host trying to get his stepchildren to love him and call him Dad. But his plans turn upside down when the biological father, Dusty Mayron, returns.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I really enjoy watching this funny movie directed by Sean Anders. It is pretty hysterical and enjoyable for preteens. I think adults might like this as well. This movie made me laugh because the movie has a lot of humor and the jokes are spot on.

The movie is about the good stepdad, Brad played by Will Ferrell. He wants to be accepted by his family because the kids aren't happy that he is their stepdad. Eventually, they do accept him, but things change when their dad, Dusty played by Mark Wahlberg tries to come back into their life. Brad and Dusty slowly begin to start a "Dad Off". They try to beat one another to show the kids who the cooler Dad is. Will they fight until there is a winner or will they make a truce and end up liking each other?

One of the things I enjoyed most about this film is the cast. They are really great! I love the message because it talks about acceptance. I also like the jokes in this movie because they are very hilarious.

My favorite character is Dusty because he is comes off as this mean person but he is actually not so bad. Dusty makes changes throughout this movie and makes many hilarious jokes that will make you like him.

The message of this movie is acceptance. Both of the dads are trying to get acceptance. Brad wants to be accepted by his step kids so they can be one happy family. Dusty wants to be accepted again after the divorce. Dusty wants to have a family, but he can be irresponsible. In this movie, acceptance is a huge thing. It takes a long amount of time since things don't happen overnight.

I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend this movie for kids ages 11 to 18. It is perfect for tweens and teens but it does contains some inappropriate mild profanity, rude humor and mild violence that make it unsuitable for younger children. I think adults will enjoy this as well. It comes out on Christmas Day so mark your calendars.

Reviewed by Ryan R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


NORM OF THE NORTH

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
NORM OF THE NORTH       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
LIONSGATE FILMS
Series: FEATURE 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - When a real estate development invades his Arctic home, Norm and his three lemming friends head to New York City, where Norm becomes the mascot of the corporation in an attempt to bring it down from the inside and protect his homeland.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - In this abnormally ambitious first feature film from Splash Entertainment, Norm of the North is about Norm (Rob Schneider), a Polar Bear who is able to communicate with humans. When his home, the Arctic is threatened by the evil developer Mr. Greene (Ken Jeong), he must journey to the concrete jungle and convince people to save his home.

This feature film offers laughs and appealing characters for young audiences and I think it also represents something bigger that older audiences will also enjoy. Splash Entertainment is an independent animation studio that has been given the chance, by its association with Lionsgate, to create a film for the big screen. That's not an easy task especially with so much competition from other animation companies. Is it revolutionary? No, but it's a nice start for Splash Entertainment's movie making journey.

The film's delightful animation is colorful and fluent. I love how the characters move and dance. I particularly enjoyed watching Mr. Greene's rubber legs. Much like his personality, his movements are snake like - always slithering from place to place. He is my favorite character because he's so over the top. It also helps that he is voiced by the hilarious comedian Ken Jeong. Speaking of which, all the voice actors in this film portray their characters very well. I'm not particularly a Rob Schneider fan but, in this film he makes Norm a lovable and plush Polar Bear.

For me, the humor is hit and miss. But, I'm not really the audience for this film. A lot of the comedy is geared for younger kids and there is a lot of potty humor. Although there are some jokes for parents and older kids to chuckle at, it is best suited for the younger set. While the slapstick is fast paced, I have a problem with how the characters come in contact. What makes slapstick funny is cause and effect. Tom and Jerry are a perfect example. When Tom runs smack into a pole his whole body makes solid contact causing him pain. In this the film, the characters seem to be made of rubber. When they come in contact with each other it's like silly putty being squished together. Now it does kind of work with Norm's furry sidekicks, the Lemmings, because their running joke is that they feel no pain. However, it does not work when the other characters react like rubber. With that said, while watching the film the kids in the theater went nuts and loved every moment of it. Just goes to show you that humor is diverse.

My favorite scene is the opening of the film when Norm tries to hunt. Not only does it reveal the status quo of the main character, it also provides a lovely introduction to the comedy that will follow. The Arctic landscape adds to the visual ambiance of the animation.

The moral of this film is "nature belongs to the animals." Mr. Greene plans to build condominiums in the Arctic and that's why Norm goes to New York and tries to convince them not to do that. I was glad to see this environmental message presented to young children.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to 3 through 12- year-olds. This film proves that just because you're not a big Polar Bear does not mean you can't make a big splash. I can't wait to see more from Splash Entertainment. This film is in theaters January 15 so mark your calendars now.

Reviewed by Keefer B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


SNOWTIME

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SNOWTIME       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: FEATURE 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - To amuse themselves during the winter school break, the kids in a small village decide to have a massive snowball fight. Luke and Sophie, both 11 years old, become the leaders of the opposing sides. Sophie and her cohort defend an elaborate snow fort against the assault of Luke's horde. Whichever side occupies the fort at the end of the winter break, wins. The voice cast includes Ross Lynch (of the pop band R5, and Disney Channel's "Austin & Ally") and Sandra Oh ("Grey's Anatomy"). The soundtrack includes songs by C�line Dion and Simple Plan.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Snowtime is an animated feature based on a live-action classic called "The Dog Who Stopped the War." It takes place in a small town during the kids' winter break. They build forts and have a war. The fighting escalates, and what starts out as fun, in the end causes a serious tragedy. I really enjoyed this show. The animation, voices, and music were all high-quality, and the story was well-written and meaningful. I wanted my little boys ages 4 and 6 to watch it, so I warned them about the sad ending, and, once they knew what to expect, they thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the movie. There are many good lessons taught such as friendship, loyalty, kindness, and avoiding conflict. I would recommend this movie for ages 5 to 18. Reviewed by Karyn A., KIDS FIRST! Juror

This animated film seemed a bit slow at times and honestly, at first...I was thinking..."Wait! This whole film is simply about a bunch of kids trying to entertain themselves on Winter school break by having a major snowball fight." I was wondering how a film could be based around this whole concept. But, this film is packed with some very powerful life lessons and messages. The characters are entertaining and two of the main characters, Luke and Sophie were my favorites. They are the leaders of the opposing teams of the snowball fight. The beginning of the film starts out as a way to have fun during Winter break but this fun turns into a more serious not so fun war and there are sadly some consequences. But, this is when the characters learn about friendship and even more important...that when there is war....no one wins. This message came thru loud and clear and really left me saying "Wow! This film is so much more than kids having a major snowball fight to entertain themselves." I was actually speechless and impressed with how this meaningful message was portrayed through this film. I give this one 4 stars and highly recommend for ages 8 to18. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love watching the new film Snowtime. This film is one to watch. In this film, it is winter break and Luke (voiced by Angela Galuppo) and his friends prepare for an epic snowball fight. They divide themselves into two teams. One team builds an amazing snow fort and the other team wants to win the snowball fight to claim ownership of the fort. Watch these two teams go head to head in this snowball fight to see who gets to win and claim the snow fort. Who will win? Who will lose?

I appreciate this film because I love how it shows a beautiful, snowy village and the kids in this village having fun in the snow. I also like the fort the kids make in this movie. I love the characters. They are silly, quirky and sometimes bashful. I also liked their appearance and how they are drawn. The jokes are also funny; this is another great film for kids. I really enjoyed the scenery too.

The moral theme in this film is an important one. Basically, there are no winners when it comes to war. The kids end up learning this lesson. Their friendly snowball fight soon takes an ugly turn which leads to some serious conflicts and a surprise. I think there are other life lessons in this film but that is the main one that stands out for me.

My favorite character is Nicky (voiced by Liz MacRae). When Nicky shares his ideas with his friends, they underestimate him and knock his ideas down. I love that he doesn't allow what they say to discourage him and he continues on his own and accomplishes his idea. I respect his persistence and how he collaborates so well with his friends. I enjoyed how he makes things and they turn out well. I appreciate his imagination. I can relate to him because people sometimes knock down some of my ideas too. But I continue to go forward with my ideas and prove them wrong.

I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars because the animation is great and it has an important message. I recommend this to kids ages 3 to 18. I think adults might like this as well. I also recommend this to people who like family, comedy, adventure and action movies. Mark your calendars for February 19, 2016 when Snowtime opens in theaters.

Reviewed by Ryan R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12.

It is 90 degrees in Los Angeles California and 48 degrees in Colorado and it is winter for another month, with snow falling in other states. What is a group of kids to do over winter break? Have a snowball fight, of course. The group splits into two teams and away we go. The story line is great. We got a glimpse of the backstory of characters and learn what motivates them and makes them who they are.

I have two favorite characters. The first is Sophie voiced by Luchina Paris. She is the older sister and is always coming up with a plan to defeat the other team. My second is four eyes because of his crazy glasses. Many of the best parts of the movie are due to his ingenious inventions he makes to keep the fort in his team's control. They are creative and awesome. I would have picked his team just to see the inventions he made - slides, escape hatches, automated snowball throws and traps to keep the other team on their toes. The story line has a bit of a love story angle but seems to fizzle out and is not completed. If they make a part two I hope they continue this story line and leave it with a better conclusion.

The hardest part of having two teams is the fact that they are all really good friends. There are many moments when you see them struggle because they are fighting their friends. It is all in fun but still there is a goal, which is to take the fort from the other team

I loved the graphics and animation. It is believable and easy to watch. You forget the characters are animated and look at them as if they are real people. The fort, well let's say it is the most awesome snow castle ever and I would love to play in it.

Most children's movies are fun, cute and quirky and leave you feeling upbeat. This movie left me feeling sad. I loved the movie but I did not like the ending. No spoilers, but I wish they had added more to the ending of the movie. But, there is a message and everyone will get it. It is one, which we should all know.

I recommend this movie for ages 6 and up. Younger kids might not totally grasp the story line but they will love the graphics and a good snowball fight.

I give this movie 4 1/2 out of 5 shooting snowballs. This movie is brought to you by Shout! Factory and opens in theaters March 29th. The DVD will be out in the fall of 2016 just in time for the next winter snow fun.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


ADVENTURES OF GUMBY, THE: THE COMPLETE 60'S SERIES, VOL. 1

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ADVENTURES OF GUMBY, THE: THE COMPLETE 60'S SERIES, VOL. 1       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: SERIES, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Join Gumby and Pokey on brand new adventures in this very special collectible box set!� Enjoy over 40 episodes on this volume 1 release of the 60s adventure series!� These are the most popular Gumby episodes ever made. In 1962, Clokey Productions began production on a new Gumby adventure series. Gumby and Pokey went off to explore more historical events and to have every other conceivable adventure in and out of books through time and toy land. In the mid-60s, new characters joined Gumby and Pokey.�Professor Kapp, a friendly absent-minded professor, becomes Gumby's scientific go-to guy.�Prickle and Goo were created to represent what famed east-west philosopher Alan Watts called the two types of people, the prickly and the gooey.� More analytical, Prickle likes to solve mysteries. The softer, mellower Goo is a kind of sky mermaid who can fly and shoot goo balls.�The Blockheads, who first showed up in the 50s, become more prominent in the mid-60s.� They represent "square thinking" and often cause trouble for Gumby and his pals. Enjoy meeting all these new characters and embarking on these iconic new adventures with Gumby, Pokey, and his pals today!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This 1960s Gumby claymation series is perfect fun for young children. Through its cute lessons and humor, this collectible box set brings enjoyment through short adventures of fun characters. Gumby, Pokey and new friends such as Professor Kapp go on fun adventures through different stages of history, often invoking trouble and learning lessons along the way. This series will appeal to the oldest, die-hard fans as well as new kids who will find joy in these classic stories. Reviewed by Carissa P., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Adventures of Gumby: The 60s Series is a very good DVD collection with some very creative animation for its time. I am a big fan of Claymation and this is a collection of the classic clay animation series from the 1960s. The DVD has a ton of episodes and you get to watch the technical aspects of the animation and the characters evolve over time.

The Adventures of Gumby: The 60s Series follows the title character - an enthusiastic green clay-boy - and his friend Pokey, a horse, as they go on fantastic adventures from battling in a joust to keeping a king in power to saving a princess from a knight and even a high-speed chase from a sculpture come to life.

As the series goes on you meet several new characters, like the mopey yellow dragon Prickle and a blue flying mermaid named Goo. My favorite characters are Rodgy the bird and Henry the bear. Rodgy and Henry make an excellent duo. There is a great episode on Rodgy's origin story called Who's What. Henry is molding clay and he makes a bird that comes to life. While Rodgy may not always agree with Henry, they always stick together.

My favorite episode in this collection is Even Steven, which follows Gumby and Pokey on a road trip but the trip goes haywire because of some con artists trying to take their money. This cat and mouse chase is funny and unpredictable.

Another episode I enjoy is Treasure For Henry. It follows Rodgy and Henry as they find some treasure that turns out to belong to pirates. This is one of several episodes in this series that is very creative with the use of real life objects in the animation.

I recommend that you watch all the episodes in this collection as well as the special features, especially for Gumby fanatics. The DVD includes the original TV pilot and some behind-the-scenes footage on how they do the Claymation. I'm amazed by how they use clay and I like watching the animation grow more sophisticated and complex over time.

I recommend The Adventures of Gumby for ages 5 to 12. It's colorful and a fun show to watch and the jokes are meant for all ages. I give this DVD 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12.
Runtime: 400 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99
Media: Video and DVD


FINEST HOURS, THE

KIDS FIRST QUALIFIED ENDORSEMENT
FINEST HOURS, THE       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS MOTION PICTURES
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - The Coast Guard makes a daring rescue attempt off the coast of Cape Cod after a pair of oil tankers are destroyed during a blizzard in 1952. Starring Chris Pine, Holliday Grainger, Casey Affleck. Directed by Craig Gillespie.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Finest Hours is a Walt Disney film that is filled with much determination that captivates your mind on a realistic approach of being in the ocean on a boat wondering if you will survive. This moved me because you have to be a thinker, organizer and strategist in order to achieve the obstacles that you will be encountering. I really loved this movie because it is in 3D which makes everything appear to be coming right at you and you feel like you are a part of the film, especially during the ocean scenes. This film is based on a true story and it is filled with action, drama and history. The director, Craig Gillespie draws you into this film by his realistic portrayal of events.

One of the worst storms to ever hit the East Coast struck New England in February 1952. It damaged an oil tanker off the coast of Cape Cod and literally ripped it in half. On a small lifeboat faced with frigid temperatures and 70-foot high waves, four members, Bernie Weber (Chris Pine), Ben Foster (Richard Livesey), Andy Fitzgerald (Kyle Gallner) and Ervin Maske (John Magaro) of the Coast Guard set out to rescue the more than 30 stranded sailors trapped aboard the rapidly-sinking vessel. The captain gives the orders and sends them out to accomplish the goal.

My favorite part of this movie is when Bernie Weber and his fellow crew members set out to find the people on the sinking ship. They lose connection with the captain and also lose their compass. The crew members want Bernie to turn back around, but he says, "no point". Bernie just keeps on going to see if he can find any type of vessel. He becomes obstinate and passionate about his Coast Guard duty.

The setting is a 1950s snowy and cold day with distinguished vintage cars the town people drive. The women's dress is classy and stylish and they definitely make a statement upon arrival to any event.

I recommend this film for ages 12 to 18 and I give it 5 out of 5 Stars because it is action-packed with some romance and tense moments. Younger audiences may not understand and might be scared. This movie hits theaters Friday, January 29, 2016. Come and check it out. It is a must see!

Reviewed by Tre'ana H., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I had good expectations for The Finest Hours, especially in IMAX 3D. It has a great, true-life story about a few men accomplishing the impossible on the high seas. It has a good cast, but no blockbuster stars. And, it has a director, Craig Gillespie, with a great Indie pedigree (Lars and the Real Girl, Million Dollar Arm). Unfortunately, the film is riddled with clich�s, which points to the writer (Scott Silver) and the director. The Finest Hours is an epic rescue story but ultimately a let down.

The Finest Hours is a true story about a rescue mission to save an oil tanker that gets partially destroyed during a big winter storm off the coast of Cape Cod. The Wellfleet Coast Guard is expected to help in the rescue but most of their large craft are out helping other distressed tankers. So, it comes down to four Coast Guarders to go out in a small boat to save the sailors on the tanker. The Coast Guard rescue team is lead by Bernie Webber (Chris Pine) and Richard Livesey (Ben Foster). Bernie is a quiet, inarticulate man who plays by the rules. They have to get past the "bar" to get out on open seas and the first time, they get fully submerged by the waves and lose their compass. It's like an ant trying to save a huge whale in the middle of a storm! Meanwhile, the crew of the tanker is trying to ground themselves on a shoal. They are being led by the head mechanic, Ray Sybert (Casey Affleck), who is an unlikely hero. He is an obsessed mechanic who is not part of the social fabric of the tanker. But because he knows the ship better than anyone, he takes control. He doesn't believe in luck, only hard work and ingenuity.

The beginning of the film is a preamble that sets up the love interest between Bernie and his girl, Miriam (Holliday Grainger) and the other characters in the town of Wellfleet. This part of the film feels rushed and clich�. Bernie is set up as a broken man for some reason, but you don't know why. Other failed rescue missions are hinted at. I feel like I don't know the characters' personalities like I do in other films. The rescue sequences are very exciting and intense, especially in IMAX 3D. The cinematography and graphics are great. The depiction of the roiling water is very realistic. I also liked the fact that both of the men leading each of their crews are unlikely heroes. There's a point in the rescue where they meet and you can see Sybert size up Webber as a similar animal to himself.

I give The Finest Hours 3 out of 5 stars due to the stereotypical and confusing screenplay and direction. It is appropriate for ages 10 through 18.

Reviewed by Clayton P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


5TH WAVE, THE

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
5TH WAVE, THE       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Topic - Family
Description - Four waves of increasingly deadly alien attacks have left most of Earth decimated. Cassie is on the run, desperately trying to save her younger brother. Starring Chloe Grace Moretz, Matthew Zuk, Gabriela Lopez. Directed by J. Blakeson.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This live action feature film directed by J Blakeson is a truly epic movie with crazy special effects. I love this movie because it is a dystopian science fiction film with a twist of romance.

Cassie Sullivan (Chloe Grace Moretz) is a typical 16-year-old girl who has life pretty easy. She loves her little brother Sammy (Zackary Arthur) more than anything in the world. One day she wakes up and her whole world has turned upside down. A series of aliens known as "the Others" has attacked planet earth and are trying to get rid of all of humanity in order to take the earth for themselves.

The Others want to get rid of the human race with five waves. The first wave is a forever lasting power outage. The second wave is an enormous earthquake with a gigantic tsunami which wipes out many people. The third wave is a disease that spreads everywhere and very few people survive it and not many are immune. There are very few survivors.

The fourth wave is when the Others disguise themselves to look just like humans and move among the humans. The people can trust no one because they have no idea who is human and their very existence is threatened.

Cassie forms an alliance with a young man named Evan Walker (Alex Roe) who is determined to help her find her brother. Fighting for their lives, the fifth wave comes which is a fight between the survivors and the Others. The future of humanity is dependent on the humans outliving the Others.

This movie has such cool special effects that look so realistic. My favorite scene is when the second wave comes with its massive earthquake and wave because it made me feel like I was there experiencing this, which would be absolutely terrifying!

My favorite character is definitely Evan Walker! He is a very determined, hardworking, independent, brave and strong person. I love the way he plays this role because he is super believable and you can really tell that he cares about Cassie.

The message of this film is to never give up hope. As Cassie says, "It's our hope that makes us human."

I give The 5th Wave 4 out of 5 stars because it is pretty predictable, but overall this move is entertaining and enjoyable. I recommend this movie for ages 12-18 because it definitely has its scary moments.

If you are a sci-fi fan and love special effects, then definitely come see this film in theaters January 22!

Reviewed by Lainey A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13.

There are dozens of films with aliens caring less about how humans go extinct, just that they do. From weapons of mass destruction to giant armies, this movie is about an alien race attempting to take over the Earth, in an efficient, dramatic, and action packed story.

The 5th Wave is an action film with gun shots, earthquakes and more. However, the story is very dramatic and there is some romance between main characters. The romance is displayed between actors more as if it was meant to be funny instead of sweet or sincere.

The action begins when a strange object appears in the sky, a massive object. No one, not even NASA can get in contact with it. Then, a mass EMP hits the Earth and makes any electronic device 100% useless, like planes, cars, phones, computers and anything else that runs off of a battery of sorts. This is the first of five waves. What follows is worst and worst. The second wave is an extremely powerful earthquake that causes tsunamis that destroys all coastal cities, islands, ships and anything else close to the water. The third wave is a disease and by the fourth wave, very few humans are left. The story follows Cassie (Chloe Moretz) and her family as they attempt to survive and also, fight back. If you want to find out what happens in the 4th and 5th wave, you have to watch the film.

Of course with aliens, explosions, tsunamis and more, there is an expectation of special effects and viewers will not be disappointed. The first ten minutes of the film shows the first three waves and it sends chills down your back seeing sky shots of destroyed cities and diseases spreading everywhere, to the point where you just stare in surprise. The acting is perfect for each role. Nick Robinson (Ben Parish) plays a depressed, quiet teenager and he does it amazingly well. The cinematography, with large aerial shots, is beautiful and then there are the script and the directing.

This is where the disappointment kicks in. Director J. Blakeson does not do the story justice. So many times, the actors are doing things that are cringe worthy and, as a result, many people in the theater laugh at the 100% serious scenes because of this. The acting is good. The entire cast really excels in portraying their roles. Although the directing isn't great. The screenplay is worse. On many occasions in the film you question where they got something or how did they know the main characters need saving. Even the back story is sloppy with massive story errors. For example, in one scene a character is rescuing another character. The savior says that he has the character's gun, but in the scene where they show the rescuing, he is carrying the character with both hands. The romance is extremely cheesy which may have been on purpose to give it a comedic effect. But either way, it doesn't work well with the serious, dramatic plot. Additionally, there is some confusion about what audience this is geared for. If young adults and teens are the targeted audience, then there are a lot of inappropriate scenes.

My favorite scenes are the first three waves not just because they are extremely important to the story, but because each second is dramatic with amazing special effects and spectacular camera work. It almost seems like they concentrated all their skill on those ten minutes, because they were the smoothest part of the film. The scene involves a major earthquake, a disease epidemic and of course, the mass blackout from an EMP.

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


MATH WITH MATTHEW: PYTHAGOREAN PROJECT

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
MATH WITH MATTHEW: PYTHAGOREAN PROJECT       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
DR. MATTHEW BEYRANEVAND
Series: INSTRUCTIONAL, AGES 7-18
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - Math with Matthew is designed to get children interested in a full range of mathematical concepts, in an easy-to-understand, yet informative way that both kids and their parents can enjoy! A fast-paced show that combines comedy and music with mathematics.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Parents, you will love this series! While I was watching Math with Matthew: The Pythagorean Project, my 8th grade daughter stopped what she was doing, sat down with me, watched, chatted and enjoyed learning about the Pythagorean Theorem. SERIOUSLY! Dr. Matthew Beyranevand, a K-12 Mathematics and Science Coordinator for the Chelmsford Public Schools, has created a brilliant episode that teaches and reinforces a variety of mathematical concepts for elementary, middle and senior high students. Matthew and his sidekick Rhombus make learning math both fun and memorable. The show is packed with a variety of skits, gags, songs and graphics that are current, informative, and funny for kids as well as adults. I highly recommend that parents and educators incorporate Math with Matthew into their student's math instruction and review. This math show can help even reticent math students find joy and humor in math and learn to enjoy the subject. Five out of five stars for Dr. Beyranevand and his brilliant Math with Matthew series!

I found myself wanting to join them in having fun while learning about math. The music, games, graphics and clever writing make the videos truly enjoyable. You almost forget that you are learning math at the same time. I love how the videos jump from one activity to another, making it really appealing for kids and teens. Music is interspersed between skits and math demonstrations. Very well constructed for the cognitive development of young students.

The characters are funny, engaging and make you feel like you already know them or want to know them. Behaviors and dialogue are appropriate, but current and in line with how students think and talk. The math demonstrations definitely support inquiry, investigation and help the viewer to see how math can be used anywhere and by anyone. The episodes are full of different skits, each with simple costumes, props, settings, etc. The total package is one of a comfortable, fun school district created show, rather than an expensive, glitzy big studio production. But that is part of the charm, because it makes you think anyone, yourself included, can have fun making a show like this one.

Any student struggling with math, or just interested in math, will benefit from watching the Math with Matthew series. I can see students wanting to try some of the math problems that they saw during the episode. In the show everyone is having such a good time doing math, it makes you want to participate! Reviewed by Ruth A., KIDS FIRST! Juror.

Math for me was a very challenging subject when I was in school. Math with Matthew: Pythagorean Project is a creative presentation of a not so easy concept to learn. It is very important for students to have a good understanding about triangles, right angles, simple problem solving and square roots. Matthew presents these elements in a simple, step by step manner and the contrast between Matthew and Rhombus is very good. Matthew wants Rhombus to agree that the Pythagorean Theory is the most important mathematical discovery and even after Matthew presents all his examples, Rhombus is still not convinced and cleverly leads into the next concept- Pi!

Reviewed by Juanita S., KIDS FIRST! Juror

Math for me was a very challenging subject when I was in school. Math with Matthew: Pythagorean Project is a creative presentation of a not-so-easy concept to learn. It is very important for students to have a good understanding about triangles, right angles, simple problem-solving and square roots. Matthew presents these elements in a simple step-by-step manner and the contrast between Matthew and Romus is very good. Matthew wants Romus to agree that the Pythagorean Theory is the most important mathematical discovery and, even after Matthew presents all his examples, Romus is still not convinced and cleverly leads into the next concept - PI!

Reviewed by Jan B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I am a kid and I love Math with Matthew! It is a fun and sometimes silly way to learn how to do different things in math. Math with Matthew uses different techniques to teach you what you are learning about, so it is helpful for kids no matter how they learn: visual, auditory, through repetition or songs. In the episode about how to do the Pythagorean Theorem they sing it, write it out and do activities using the Pythagorean Theorem. Math with Matthew would help lots of kids learn math. I recommend it for ages 5 to 8 depending on what you need to learn. I also rate it 5out of 5 stars because of all the ways they teach you. I am going to ask my teachers to show us Math with Matthew at school. Reviewed by Mia A., KIDS FIRST Film Critic.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Web Series



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