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This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
FEARLESS AND FLUFFY
DILPREET KAUR WALIA
Series: SCREENPLAY
Topic -
Description - The friendly Grim Reaper Junior is not a chip off the old block, leaving his dad open to being hoodwinked by the evil Birthday Candlewicks.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This screen play is not what I expected and I mean that in a good way! The ones I thought would be bad are the good guys and the ones I thought would be good...are bad. This is a refreshing change! I really like the imagination and creativity of the characters and the story line and could see this as a movie that tweens and teens would enjoy. I recommend it for ages 8 through 18. I also like that it is entertaining but has a message about not changing for others and being yourself. I give this 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments

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


This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
MINNIE NOIR
KATIE GROTZINGER
Series: SCREENPLAY
Topic -
Description - Minnie Hughes is a hardboiled noir detective that also just so happens to also be the shortest girl in the fourth grade. When a candidate for class president's show and tell South African ostrich egg goes missing, Minnie jumps on the case. Meanwhile, she also deals with her best friend Lincoln Park feeling under appreciated after she calls him her secretary and struggles with asking her crush, Vijay Sampat, a kind of male femme fatale, to be her dance partner for gym class.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The script was enjoyable to read. The term Film Noir (French for suspense film) is most likely a double-entendre since the main character is African-American and is a mystery solver. Strengths- Multicultural cast of characters, main character is an African-American female, which is unusual for any story. Weaknesses- One character is a bit stereotyped. Yes because the WHODUNIT mystery theme is very universal and the school setting makes it relatable to most viewers. Theme- Helping another out in a time of crisis and helping them receive justice. In an increasingly terrifying world and last years headlines exposing injustices against women, Kids need to know that they can attain control over some situations and feel empowered. Plot and Structure- Narrative Logic: A good example is when the viewer can sense that Minnie will get to dance with Vijay when in gym class by the end of the story. Emotional Impact: the best example is when the viewer wonders where Minnie's parents are (or what happened to them) at the synopsis' conclusion. Dramatic drive: a good example is when Vijay kicks open the bathroom door and Dash appears with a bloodied nose. Structure of the storyline: Introduction of characters and story, mystery to be solved, finding the culprit, and conclusion are clear and straightforward. Characters and dialogue: Minnie is the most thoroughly developed character because she is the main protagonist. She is quick-witted and adept, yet comes across as bashful to her crush Vijay, and is annoyed/irritated by her ally in crime-solving, Lincoln. The characters, such as Lincoln and Dash, are not as fully drawn out. They can be described as geeky and devious, respectively. Dialogue- an example of the wittiness, humor, and power in the dialogue includes Lincoln injecting comments at Minnie which irritates/annoy her, but makes the audience laugh. Rhythm/ pace: script does not seem to lag and is easy to read from beginning to end, making it a good film production choice (viewers would not zone out.) Tone of script is light-heartedness. Narrative voice: Minnie is the type of character who is driven and will fight for justice of the deserved and will not stop until she finds the justice. Nothing will get in her way. Highly recommended for ages 5-8. Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Screenplay


SUPER 4: MEET RUBY

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SUPER 4: MEET RUBY       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 5-8
Topic - Family
Description - Inspired by the world of PLAYMOBIL� toys, set out on a series of adventures with the Super 4 as they travel through the wider PLAYMOBIL� universes. Join Ruby and friends as they embark on 7 fun-filled pirate adventures! First, understand how Ruby came to be the amazing pirate she is. A wicker basket washes up on the shore of Gunpowder Island holding a little baby. Surprise, it's a girl! When Ruby is old enough to jump on ship to join in on a pirate raid, little Ruby sits on the sidelines and watches it all. To prove she is a real pirate, Ruby must set out to obtain a mythical treasure. Will she find it and become a true pirate? Find out in Meet Ruby!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - coming soon
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This film has a great plotline and gives each character lots of personality. The plotline becomes even more interesting because of all the strong personalities. Even though this film is meant for younger ages, I still was quite entertained.

This film is all about meeting and getting to know who Ruby is. It starts from pirates discovering her as a baby, watching her go on adventures and figuring out who she wants to be. She goes off to the sea for the first time by herself and encounters problems. Eventually she is able to overcome them. She then goes off and solves multiple tests to be able to acquire treasure.

Laetitia Lefebvre has a determined and strong child-like voice which perfectly fits Ruby because Ruby has all of these traits. Ruby at times can sound very stubborn, scared, determined and strong. The Black Baron (Tom Wayland) sounds determined as well. The Black Baron is a very manipulative character and Wayland changes his voice accordingly. For example, he can sound convincing, caring and sweet, but also ominous.

The animation is very colorful and has lots of details. I also love that their faces express emotion and their body language does as well. The pirate costumes are very unique. I loved seeing all the different types of clothing that doesn't repeat for everyone.

My favorite scene is when Ruby smartly doesn't get distracted by the Black Baron when he wants to steal the treasure. I felt really proud of her and I knew that she was fit to become a knight.

The message of the story is to always believe in yourself no matter what. Ruby was born as a pirate, but girls aren't allowed to be pirates. Even though this is true, Ruby goes out and proves her worthiness. She encounters many problems, but stays strong and believes in herself. She stays determined every time. She doesn't stop continuing on her journey. Instead she just becomes stronger and fights even harder. This is a good message for female empowerment. Even though people want to limit you because you are a girl, don't let them. Do what Ruby does. Everyone is against her and she still manages to achieve all of her goals and become successful.

This DVD, just like the rest of the Super 4 series, is well made. It has a wonderful message and an entertaining plotline. I recommend this for ages 6 to 11 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. This is available on DVD now, so definitely check it out.

By Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13.
Runtime: 45 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-8
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99
Media: DVD


ABC MONSTERS: THE COMPLETE SEASON

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
ABC MONSTERS: THE COMPLETE SEASON       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 2-5
Topic - Family
Description - Enjoy the complete season of ABC Monsters! Embark on one phonics adventure after another while learning each letter of the alphabet in this complete set! Twenty six cuddly ABC Monsters live within the walls of Capital Castle. Each monster represents a letter of the alphabet but should any of the monsters go missing for longer than a day, all the letters will be wiped out from every book in Capital Town! So it's very important to make sure that all the ABC Monsters are safely back in Alphabet Gardens before the sun goes down. However, this isn't as easy as it sounds. The ABC Monsters are naturally curious creatures and often wander off from Alphabet Gardens to try and find new and fun items, inevitably getting themselves lost in the process. When Alice, Brian and Cherry Berry set out to find the ABC Monsters, they learn to spell multiple items that start with that ABC Monsters letter as well as play other phonics games and sing songs! Get set for a spellbinding series of magical adventures that engages the imagination all while making learning the alphabet exciting and entertaining!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - ABC Monsters: The Complete Season is a fun and educational experience for young kids. It inspires them to learn, enjoy learning and even encourages them to participate in physical activity. It is creative and interesting all the way through. If I was a parent, I would use this DVD to help me teach my kid about the alphabet and early language skills.

I have reviewed other episodes of ABC Monsters previously and enjoy how each episode is different. For example, one of the episodes is based on introducing kids to the letter "A." In this episode, the Alphabet Monsters are so excited about the archery competition when suddenly, all the arrows go missing! Alice, Bryan and Cherry Berry (the protagonists) go on a mission to find the missing arrows and the missing letter of the alphabet, which just so happens to be Letter "A." On the way, they go on a lot of mini quests such as helping Amy the Alligator find her armband and help Farmer Alex find his apple. At the end of the episode, Alice, Bryan and Cherry Berry review everything we learned in the episode and include fun little songs and dances for us to do and sing.

Everything about this show is child friendly and appropriate for a young age group. The storylines are consistent without being repetitive and are quite easy to follow. This show would be very entertaining for young kids. The visuals are bright and colorful which will attract young viewers. The music is upbeat and cheery. The characters are adorable and likable. I think that all of these aspects are important in order for kids to enjoy watching a program.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 1 to 5. I believe that this show will intrigue kids with its cute characters and interesting plotlines. It will get them excited about learning, music and physical fitness. It will help parents teach their kids about spelling, grammar and phonics while keeping them hooked and wanting to learn more. This show offers quality entertainment for young children who need to be introduced to the alphabet. Parents can feel confident about using this DVD to enlighten their little ones about the English language. It is available on DVD now so, check it out.

By Ella L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, age 14
Runtime: 575 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-5
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99
Media: DVD


INCREDIBLES 2

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
INCREDIBLES 2       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS MOTION PICTURES
Series: FEATURES, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - Bob Parr (Mr. Incredible) is left to care for Jack-Jack while Helen (Elastigirl) is out saving the world.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Incredibles 2 is here! It has been 14 years since Incredibles and, I believe that the long -awaited sequel is quite good. I thoroughly enjoyed this Pixar super hero sequel.

The storyline is about the Parr family - Bob/Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson), Helen/Elastigirl (Holly Hunter), Violet (Sarah Vowell), Dash (Huck Milner) and baby Jack-Jack (Eli Fucile) returning to save the world. The Incredibles continues their battle in balancing family life with saving the world with their super powers.

I like the addition of the new cast of super heroes including Lucius Best/Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson) and Voyd (Sophia Bush). This film continues with action similar to the original film and the animation is truly amazing as it shows the various adventures of the family members.

The storyline features Elastigirl taking the lead in a campaign to bring Supers back, while Mr. Incredible is given the responsibility of caring for the kids. Their mission is derailed, as a new villain emerges with a brilliant and dangerous plot that threatens everything. But the Parrs don't shy away from a challenge, especially with Frozone by their side. This is what makes this family so incredible.

My favorite scene is when Bob Parr/Mr. Incredible discovers baby Jack Jack has super powers. He goes through walls, becomes a ferocious beast and duplicates himself, just to name a few of his powers.

This film contains action, adventure, comedy and It could be too intense for very young or sensitive kids. I think it will surely be a fun summer movie for many families.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18. Many adults will enjoy it also. The film opens in theaters nationwide June 15, 2018. Be sure to check it out.

By Juanita L., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Fourteen years after the first film was released, we finally have the continuation of the Pixar animated hit and I would dare say, every year of waiting was worth it because this film is truly incredible.

The story follows the Parr Family, as it looks like being super heroes (Supers) is against the law, but then an opportunity for Elastigirl to change people's view of Supers occurs, while Mr. Incredible stays at home with the kids.

I always talk about the animation first, so let's do that. The animation in the first movie was pretty good by 2004 standards. What I find interesting is that this movie looks really similar to the first. It feels as if it's the same animation, just updated. That isn't a bad thing. In fact, I actually like it. I love how you can actually see such small details such as the fabric textures on the clothes. You can see the sleep deprivation on the characters' faces and not just in bags under the eyes. I really like seeing all these details.

Since the main characters are all super heroes, there's lots of action. I feel like this movie is really creative with all the different powers, particularly those for Violet and Elastigirl. There's lots of cool stuff they do with Violet's force fields and Elastigirl's stretching. They also introduce a group of new Supers who are very creative. From the design, to the powers, I think the group is a cool addition to the story.

Of course the elephant in the room is Jack-Jack. In the first movie, they show that Jack-Jack has powers. They never specify what powers he has. An important plot point in the movie is about Jack-Jack's powers. However, now I'm even more confused. Off the top of my head, he has 11 powers and I may have forgotten some. The movie also has slight implications that this isn't normal and now I'm incredibly curious. Hopefully it won't take 14 years for an answer. Yes, I am ready for Incredibles 3!

This movie also excels in character development. Since the typical parent roles are switched, with the mom working and the dad staying at home watching the kids, it very subtly shows off both Mr. Incredible and Elastigirl's character and motivations. It genuinely feels like a continuation, as it does address Mr. Incredible's desire to be a super hero again. It also shows how raising a family is team work.

I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, as the movie is kind of dark at times. The movie opens in theaters June 15m 2018 so check it out!

Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Incredibles 2, directed by the legendary Brad Bird is a timeless classic that has been reborn fourteen years after The Incredibles! Although bound to be compared to the original, Incredibles 2 creates a legacy and masterpiece in itself with a myriad of creativity and uniqueness. The story takes me back to my childhood and into the future with the retro, but futuristic feel created by integrating new superhero technology and vintage technology.

The story picks off from where the Incredibles ends, when the Underminer threatens the city and superheroes are still illegal. To try and bring the superheroes back into business, a rich entrepreneur by the name of Winston Deavor (Bob Odenkirk) enlists the help of Helen Parr, also known as Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) to win the people's hearts once again. Bob Parr, also known as Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) stays at home to take care of his three super children.

The same voice actors play the same characters in The Incredibles and Incredibles 2 except Dash Parr, played by Huck Milner. It made me feel as though no time has passed since I was a young child watching The Incredibles. When I was watching this film, I didn't realize the actor was different for Dash. He has the same childish innocence and humor in his voice, as well as Dash's famous sarcasm. Due to the fact that the same cast plays the same characters fourteen years later, Craig T. Nelson's voice is more raspy, but it adds an element that elevates Bob Parr's character. Bob is a lot more exhausted throughout the film and the raspy addition makes the character feel realistic and relatable.

The animation uses many of the features from the first film, while adding new perspectives and elements of modern filmmaking. The animated camera angles are a special component. During a variety of fight scenes and other relaxed scenes, the perspective switches from third person to first person quite often. This engaged me as a viewer and adds to the intensity and excitement of a superhero chase and being in a world with superheroes. The fight scenes are memorable with each one becoming better and more innovative than the last. The director, Brad Bird makes sure each of the superhero's powers are used to the best of their ability. For example, Elastigirl acquires a new motorbike that can split apart while she provides the bridge keeping it intact, allowing for easy mobility in difficult situations.

The message of this film is that parents are heroes, whether or not they wear super suits. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18. Be sure to check out this long-awaited sequel in theatres nationwide June 15, 2018. Reviewed by Sahiba K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

The Incredibles 2 is a great sequel to an amazing movie. The animation is brilliant, plus, the two main plots balance out well to create a well-rounded film.

The Incredibles 2 continues the story of the Parrs, a super hero family that had to go into hiding because of a law banning supers. This film focuses on Elastigirl as she tries to end the anti-super laws that stop her from being a superhero. Meanwhile, Mr. Incredible struggles to keep the kids in check.

My favorite part is when Jack-Jack uses his powers to fight a raccoon because he thinks it's a criminal. This scene is hilarious. I really enjoyed how Mr. Incredible is sleeping in the foreground, while all the action happens in the back. I also like the scene when Elastigirl chases after the new hover train. This scene is fast paced and funny.

The animation in this film is great. I specifically like the glass breaking, the water features of the house and Frozone's ice. The glass and the water are both super realistic and I really like how they kept the same style as the original film for Frozone's ice. I felt they underused Dash in this film though. His only part in this film is needing help with math. I feel this wastes Dash, because I really enjoy him as a character. The Incredibles 2 has some very topical morals in it. It asks the question of whether a law should be followed if it is unlawful. It also focuses on the concept of "when enough people have the same idea and they fight for it, that things will change".

The voice acting is quite good. You can hear the emotion in the actors' voices, so you can really connect to their characters. The music in this film is truly brilliant. They wrote theme songs for Frozone, Mr. Incredible and Elastigirl that are written like 60s super hero themes. These are scattered around the movie and really make a major comedic effect.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars because, while it's not as good as the original, it is still an incredible film. I recommend it for ages 7 through 18 because it's really a film a huge variety of different people will enjoy. I believe adults will really enjoy watching this film as well. It opens in theaters nationwide June 15, 2018 so, check it out.

Reviewed by Rohan F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 1

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


This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
ALL IN GOOD TIME
DYEHOUSE FILMS
Series: FOREIGN INDIE SHORT, AGE 8-12
Topic - Family
Description - All In Good Time is a comic fantasy for children. It's about the friendship that develops between Mal, an Irish boy who lives on the west coast of Ireland in 1918 and Sam, an Indian-Irish girl who lives in the same place in 2018. They are magically able to communicate across the ages through messages in a bottle they throw into the sea. Their parents are too busy or sceptical to believe them but they don't care. They're having too much fun learning about each other's world and sending each other things through the bottle. Sam is also able to help Malachy confront the older boy who bullies him with the help of some modern intervention. But when Sam's Dad tells her they have to move away due to financial difficulties Malachy and Sam hatch a time-twisting plan to solve the problem. This is a visually-driven story with an emphasis on fun about the culture clash and unique friendship that develops between two mismatched kids who come from different worlds.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I highly recommend this charming short from Dublin, Ireland. This is exactly the sort of film that we look for! The fantastical time and space elements are particularly enjoyable. I believe children will be drawn to it as they tend to love magical stories. This has an enticing story which draws the viewer in from the beginning to end. It flows well. The cinematography is excellent with clear audio and visuals. The sounds of the ocean and the breaking of the bottle stand out. The cinematography in coastal Ireland are stunningly beautiful. The lighting correlates well with the fantasy nature of the story and adds to its mystery. I love the key cast characters, the boy and the girl both give quite believable performances that make them seem quite real. Their expressions in their close-ups are completely charming. I really enjoyed the soundtrack. It is quite suitable for the storyline with sort of a Celtic sound and it adds to the sense of wonder throughout the film. To differentiate the 100 year difference in time, the characters' costumes obviously have to be different - some for the early 1900s and others for present day. They are well executed and suitable for the two time periods. The language is appropriate for the target age as well. This would make a great addition to any children or family film festival that wants to show how different cultures live in different times. I love the ending! The whole film is magically realistic! I heart fully recommend it for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival for ages 8 to 12 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Kimberly M. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! jurors.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 13 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


SHERLOCK GNOMES

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SHERLOCK GNOMES       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
PARAMOUNT PICTURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - After a string of garden gnome disappearances in London, Gnome & Juliet look to legendary detective Sherlock Gnomes to solve the case of their missing friends and family.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Breaking news from London - garden gnomes have been kidnapped! "Oh fertilizer!" This is one of many amusing jokes from the very British characters in Sherlock Gnomes, sequel to the 2011 animated film Gnomeo and Juliet. Although the plot of this family-friendly movie is somewhat predictable, it is still quite funny and clever.

In this sequel, the formerly star-crossed lovers Gnomeo (James McAvoy) and Juliet (Emily Blunt) are married and have just moved to London where they are appointed by their parents as joint heads of the garden. Both Juliet and Gnomeo feel the pressures of their new leadership roles and the marriage begins to suffer through lack of communication and mutual appreciation. Meanwhile, their gnome friends are disappearing from homes all over London, and they attempt to search for and save them. With the help of Sherlock Gnomes (Johnny Depp) and Watson (Chiwetel Ejiofor), the adventure begins - to defeat the evil pie company called Moriarty (Jamie Demetriou) and save all gnomes. We also see that poor Watson is quite ignored and under-appreciated by Sherlock.

My favorite aspects of this movie are the music, Johnny Depp and the "planning" sequences. I love the song choices used in transitions between scenes. If you are a fan of Sir Elton John, you will be pleased to hear many of his hits, including "Don't Go Breaking My Heart," "I'm Still Standing," "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" and a fantastic new song performed by the great Mary J. Blige. Johnny Depp is hilarious with his condescending British accent. I have seen almost every movie he has ever been in and he never disappoints with his comedic intensity. Another interesting thing that happens is when we see the inner workings of Sherlock's mind in 2-D black-and-white animation. One clinker for me is when super-intelligent Watson, looking for Gnomeo, says "Gnomeo, Gnomeo! Oh don't make me say it - wherefore art thou, Gnomeo?" (Of course "wherefore" means "why" in Romeo and Juliet.)

The message of this story is a good one - that you will succeed by respecting the people who support you. Sherlock learns that lesson when he realizes that Watson feels that Sherlock isn't listening to him or respecting him. Juliet learns it when she realizes that Gnomeo feels as if Juliet is ignoring him, too.

I rate this film 5 out of 5 stars because, almost all the scenes kept me laughing, the music is great, and I love the message. I recommend this movie for ages 7 to 18. This is available on DVD/Blu-ray June 12, 2018 and on Digital June 5, 2018. If you are looking for a fun family movie, this is it!

Reviewed by Lucia F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 19
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Sherlock Gnomes is a great movie! I really like the storyline because it has an amazing good versus evil plot.

The story follows Gnomeo and Juliet's move to London where they become the new leaders of the garden. On their first day, somebody kidnaps all the gnomes in the garden! Luckily, Sherlock Gnomes and Watson are there. Gnomeo and Juliet help Sherlock save all the gnomes in London.

The animation in this movie is excellent. The gnomes look like real life gnomes with a small touch of cartoon. I like how, in the beginning, a couple of gnomes are standing on a book talking about how they are going to read about Sherlock Gnomes. Sherlock Gnomes is a great detective just like Sherlock Holmes, but instead of protecting people he is the sworn protector of Gnomes. This gives the feeling that the entire movie is about those three gnomes reading us a book about Sherlock Gnomes.

The movie has lots of characters named from other movies and books such as Gnomeo and Juliet whose names are take offs of Romeo and Juliet. Sherlock Gnomes is based on Sherlock Holmes. I like how the gnomes freeze around humans. They just stay completely still so humans don't realize they move. The frozen position is also what they do when fall asleep. As soon as they get frozen, they can choose to fall asleep instantly or not.

The characters in the film include Gnomeo (James McAvoy), Juliet (Emily Blunt), Sherlock Gnomes (Johnny Depp) and Watson (Chiwetel Ejiofor). My favorite character is Benny, (Matt Lucas) because he is smart with technology, but otherwise very clumsy. I find that funny.

My favorite scene is when Benny trips and he is forced to put on a show to distract the guard while Gnomeo escapes. That scene is a mix of action and comedy. Another of my favorite scenes is when Gnomeo comes up with a plan to get past Reggie the gargoyle (Dexter Fletcher). I like how they show the plan with paper versions of all the gnomes.

The message of this movie is never take advantage of your friends. I rate this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 11 because of its great storyline and message. I think adults will like watching this movie as well. It comes out on DVD and Blu-ray June 10 so, be sure to check it out. Reviewed by Damon Foxe, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10.

Sherlock Gnomes is a frequently clever animated film that has a few fun moments, yet suffers from a jumbled story and too many characters to fully engage you in the movie as a whole.

Sherlock Gnomes is a sequel to Gnomeo and Juliet and brings together garden gnome versions of the famous detective and the Shakespearean couple from the first installment. Gnomeo and Juliet move to a new garden in London that disappoints their entire faction of gnomes. Gnomeo and Juliet are appointed the new leaders to turn the garden into a beautiful wonderland for their little village. Meanwhile, several gardens have been erased of all signs of gnomekind and soon, Gnomeo and Juliet's is too. The dynamic duo of the incredibly smart, but sometimes selfish detective and protector of London's garden gnomes Sherlock Gnomes and his trusty sidekick Watson are on the case and intend to catch the culprit and track down the missing gnomes, with the help of Gnomeo and Juliet.

Unfortunately the collision of these literary duos doesn't work very well. Their stories have very different characters and tones. The film makes clever references to Sherlock Holmes and his works that will be enjoyable for fans of the character's inspiration, but the collaboration still feels forced. Gnomeo and Juliet go through a storyline that feels out of place and their conversations have a repetitive message. The characters feel less developed against the more engaging Sherlock Gnomes.

My favorite character is Sherlock Gnomes (Johnny Depp). He embodies the qualities of the literary detective and makes his portrayal of Sherlock his own, giving him a more fun and comedic manner. He also nails Sherlock's complex relationship with Watson.

I recommend this film for ages 5 to 9 due to some crude humor. Younger kids will enjoy the film's bright colors and caper elements and older kids and adults might enjoy some of the humor. However, this film lacks the vivid animation and nuance that offers the same wide appeal of other animated films. I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars because the story is a bit confusing, although it has some characters and good laughs.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 86 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
BREAKFAST CHICKEN
THOMAS KASTRATI
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 7-18
Topic - Family
Description - Life from the point of view of an egg.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I highly recommend this short animation film to the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival. It examines life from the point of view of an egg and two pieces of bacon. I love the simplicity of the animation. It is straightforward, comical and a bit sad all at once. When an egg has eyes, it makes you think twice about consuming it. The sound quality is excellent. The animation is simple, yet well executed. The storyline flows very well and is easily watchable as well as entertaining. The film has a funny way of expressing how being eaten by a human might be an animal's nightmare. I believe children will appreciate the funny aspect of the film and, at the same time, understand and think about the message. In its subtle way, it teaches you about caring how other beings feel. I definitely recommend this for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival, especially if the venue is focused on ethics or insight. I recommend it for ages 7 to 18, as well as adults and give it 4.5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Elizabeth V. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Jurors.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 1 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU: AN ENCHANTING EASTER       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 2-7
Topic - Family
Description - Enjoy this Easter special adventure based on the classic picture book that has sold more than 30 million copies worldwide, written by Sam McBratney, illustrated by Anita Jeram and published by Walker Books. As winter melts into spring and the meadow bursts forth with new life, Little Nutbrown Hare sees a rare sight... a pure white fawn, dancing in the moonlight. Nobody in the meadow has ever seen a white fawn so his friends think he's making it up. But Little White Owl tells of a place of mystical white creatures in the next valley, so the friends go on an adventure... across the streamy stream, and through the woody woods to search for the mythical white fawn. Little do they know that the tiny fawn is hiding from them, on the patches of white snow, thinking they are all playing a game of hide-and seek. Only when she falls into the stream and the friends save her do they believe Little Nutbrown Hare. The fawn visits them on Easter Day, but isn't so good at playing hide and seek in the grassy meadow, until they find a field of pure white flowers to play in.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I thoroughly enjoyed this DVD and found it quite interesting to learn about a white fawn. This is a heartwarming tale about Little Brown Hare who wanders outside one night when he can't sleep and discovers a rare, all white fawn dancing in the snow. He knows all white fawns are rare and when he talks to her she runs away. Through lots of escapades Little Brown Hare finally is able to convince his forest friends the fawn is real and able to befriend the white fawn. The characters are interesting and charming. A field mouse and a squirrel friends are all friends with Little Brown Hare and they interact with each other in the most loving way. I felt sorry for Little Brown Hare when no one believes that he had seen the white fawn. Eventually the truth comes out and they finally see her and believe Little Brown Hare.

The morale of this story is about love. The love between Little Brown Hare and his dad, the love of friends and possibility of the love of strangers. The negative behaviors shown are about doubt, but that disappears over time. I particularly enjoyed seeing the field mouse trying to protect Little Brown Hare by making a white fawn out of snow. He tries to protect his friend's honor in doing so.

The educational and social elements that make this title valuable emphasize the various ways that you can show someone how you love them. Adults often tell children that they love them and they can hear it in this story in a way they can relate to.

I recommend this for ages 3 to 7 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. It uses vocabulary and ideas which little children can understand and enjoy. Questioning, probing and problem-solving are developed in a manner suitable for the target age. It is very enjoyable and available now on DVD, so check it out.

Reviewed by Tina B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The DVD Guess How Much I Love You: An Enchanting Easter is a great movie for the whole family. This film has beautiful animation and an adorable storyline that I love.

Guess How Much I Love You: An Enchanting Easter follows a group of forest animals. One, the Little Nutbrown Hare sees a pure white fawn that enchants him. He tells his father and his friends - the field mouse, the fox and the grey squirrel. They do not believe him at first but Little Nutbrown Hare convinces them to help find the white fawn.

The animation in this series is adorable. The characters and background are very colorful. In every scene, there is always a pop of color, whether it is a vibrant blue or a soft pink. The characters look just like the illustrations in the original book, which I love. It is remarkable how detailed the characters are. For example, the fox has orange fur that fades at the end. It looks like a watercolor painting.

If I was to pick my favorite character, it would be the field mouse or perhaps Little Nutbrown Hare's father. I like the field mouse, because he is the only one who believes in Little Nutbrown Hare and what he saw. I also like Little Nutbrown Hare's father, because he is so kind. He takes care of the mother bird's eggs while she goes to get feathers for her nest. When the birds hatched, he takes them to where he kept warm during the storms until their mother cam back.

The message of this movie is to trust your friends. The fox and the grey squirrel did not believe Little Nutbrown Hare's story about seeing a pure white fawn. The only one that really believes him is the field mouse. He keeps Little Nutbrown Hare's hopes up when his friends did not believe him. I rate this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages five to seven. This is available on DVD so, look for it.

Reviewed by Carla P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

Easter! I love Easter! This 30 minute fantastic, delightful and pure film is directed by Jo Boag. It's so rare to find a truly quality children's film such as this. I love how the storyline brings together so many themes including friendship, believing, togetherness and Easter. Wow! What an amazing combination! Get ready to head down a road filled with adventure.

The story follows Little Nutbrown Hare leading a journey to find a pure white fawn that he sees shining and dancing in the moonlight near his village. His friends think he's making it up. They take a gamble endeavor through the woods in the next valley, down the flowing creek and past the rocks to find her. As their doubt grows, she is right there hiding on the patches of white snow. She instantly thinks it's a big game of hide and seek. She promises to visit them on Easter Day, making Easter that much special for them all.

This film is based on the classic book that has sold worldwide, written by Sam McBratney, illustrated by Anita Jeram and published by Walker Books. The animation is astonishing from beginning to end. The characters are beautiful, colorful, appealing and attractive throughout the entire movie. This film is downright delightful, bringing so much joy for one to appreciate. I just love the animals, especially the cute baby birds! The music really supports the lovely characters and action.

My favorite part is when Little Nutbrown Hare and his friends save the pure white fawn from drowning in the stream. It shows how much he cares and adores her. Absolutely touching! This part in the film has many different actions happening at the same time. All of Little Nutbrown Hare's friends find out the pure white fawn is real and not in Little Nutbrown Hare's imagination. At this moment they are reminded the world is full of marvelous animals. My favorite characters are the pure white fawn and Little Nutbrown Hare, because they are both happy, intriguing, playable and friendly.

This film has a great message of friendship and love and the meaning behind them. True friendships are displayed in this film and we see the genuine love and understanding the characters have for each other. It absolutely calls you to action when they venture out to find pure white fawn. All the characters treat one another appropriately, helping help each other, saying nice things and being friendly to one another.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 11, as well as adults. This film is available now on DVD and Digital, so go check it out before Easter.

Reviewed by Nathalia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

I love Guess How Much I Love You: An Enchanting Easter! It is a great addition for my collection of Easter movies because it is so cute!

Easter is on its way and this hare is perfect for the holiday season. The life lessons are about friendship and being kind to others. We see this in the kindness extended to the pure white fawn when they show her that they can be friends. The other life lessons are about teamwork and believing in your friends.

The animation is just breathtaking. It is so perfectly executed that it looks like a perfect little story book with live animals. The scenes with the snow are amazing because of the color mix. It is truly magical.

My favorite character is the pure white fawn. She is a new character that I will always remember. I love her personality. She has a sweet side, which she shows towards the end of the film and a funny, silly, playful side that she shows in the beginning. I am in love with her character's voice which is so soft and sweet, making her the perfect fawn. Her interaction with all the different animals shows that she fits right in and they all gain a new BFF.

Another thing that I like about this DVD are the voiceovers. They match the characters wonderfully with their soft tones, making sound a lot like young children. Each character has a small, adorable and squeaky voice.

All the animals are lovable and each one has a different personality. This makes me feel like I am meeting them for real. I want to jump into the screen and give them a big welcome hug. It also makes me want to jump through the TV and play in the meadow as they celebrate Easter. This is a perfect way to get into the spirit of spring after a long, cold and rainy winter.

I recommend this DVD for kids age 4 to 13 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. It is available now on DVD so look for it. Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 30 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-7
Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99
Media: DVD


NATURE: ANIMALS WITH CAMERAS
PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 7-18
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - Wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan and animal behaviorists join forces to explore stories of animal lives "told" by the animals themselves. The series explores the secret side of the animal kingdom where human cameramen can't go, and camera-wearing animals film their own stories. Sprint across the savannah with a cheetah, plunge into the ocean with a seal, and swing through the trees with a chimp!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This documentary is exquisitely remarkable, thanks to the engineering of tiny camera and collars the animals wear. I was quite impressed with everything about this show. It offers rare glimpses into the lives of many animals including chimpanzees, penguins and meerkats. And, that is only in Episode 1! There are three episodes included in this collection. It is fascinating to see the birthing chamber of the meerkats and see their new pups at five days old. It is wonderful to see how bonded the chimpanzee family is. The film is educational and thoroughly entertaining as you observe these animals lives from their own point of view. The film shows many things that have never been seen before. I really enjoyed watching how the young penguins learn to hunt in the ocean and how the adults feed their babies. Thanks to these little cameras they wear on their backs we see a totally new aspect of these animals. I was just amazed as I watched them swim past shrimp and to reach their superfood - anchovies. I recommend them this film for ages 7 to 18 as well as adults. The groundbreaking footage will truly sweep you away. I give this 5 stars out of 5 stars. It is absolutely one of my new favorite Nature films from PBS. I plan to watch it again! Reviewed by Denise A. Bloomfield
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult review
Runtime: 180 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 15.45
Media: DVD


URBAN LEGENDS/ AUNTIE VERONICA

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
URBAN LEGENDS/ AUNTIE VERONICA
MARIA BOROS
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 8-18
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - A story about auntie Veronica, to whom Jesus had appeared many times in various forms and poses.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I love this film! It is wildly creative and made me laugh multiple times. I liked it so much, I had to watch it twice. It goes by so fast that I needed to watch it again to catch everything. It is incredibly clever and has a unique storyline. I absolutely love that the story is told by a man who had only heard of Auntie Veronica. The concept is wild. It shows someone's imagination running amuck (in a great way). It truly exceeded my expectations in every way. I truly enjoyed it. The animation is quite different from anything I have ever seen. It seems to be made from paper cut outs, in layers. It is adorable, quirky and has lots of different patterns and colors. The images are clear and the images are constantly creative. The background music is also fun and playful and fits the film very well. The whole mood of the film is light, silly and fun. The story flows well. It has a beginning and ending, but there are no pressing conflicts or issues. The narrator describes and introduces Auntie Veronica who is quite the character. The description of her, her associates and her take on life is the whole storyline. She is some character. Silliness is the overriding theme of this film. It is very much watchable and completely enjoyable. The vocabulary and concepts are terrific and suitable for the recommended age. I recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Children will enjoy it because it is silly and humorous. And, adults will truly get a kick out of it as well. You should know that the narrative is in Hungarian with English sub-titles. I recommend this for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival and give it 4.5 out of 5 stars. It has a brilliant story and it is told so well. Reviewed by Chandler D. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Jurors. My congratulations to Katalin Glaser, the filmmaker, for her cleverness in creating this. It is short at 3 minutes - and well worth every second!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - See adult comments
Runtime: 3 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


GYPSY TALES/ THE FIERY RED SNAKE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
GYPSY TALES/ THE FIERY RED SNAKE
MARIA BOROS
Series: EPISODICS
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - The events of a little boy's life usher him into the world of life among the gypsies, where he seeks unconditional love, and his closest family members are put to the test.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Love this! The animation in this short film from Hungary is absolutely incredible. The colors are magnificent and truly catch the audience's eye. The music is beautiful and unlike anything I have ever heard. The overall production quality is excellent. You can see the hard work the animators put into making this. This episode has a strong main character who learns that money is not everything. It imparts an important message and teaches young viewers the importance of family and love. The most appealing aspects of this film are the animation and story, both of which are very child friendly. The animation includes such brilliant and beautiful colors. Also, it is worth mentioning that this is an episode of a television series. This episode stands alone quite well, has a clear story that is easy to follow and will keep the audience engaged. I found it a bit confusing when Aluno meets Lunica and he tells her that his father told him that she would come one day. It does not make sense because Aluno's father rarely speaks to Aluno. There are some words in this short that may be a bit too advanced for younger children but can easily be explained. One theme that is prevalent is greed, although it is emphasized that family and love are far more important than money. I highly recommend this for KIDS FIRST! Film Festival programmers. It is overflowing with positive messages, gorgeous animation is gorgeous and beautiful songs and music. I recommend it for ages 8 to 18 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. You should know the dialogue is in Hungarian with English subtitles. Reviewed by Chandler D., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see juror comments
Runtime: 8 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


TENKARA KID

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
TENKARA KID
MARK STEUDEL
Series: SHORTS 5-18
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - For many of us, we work hard all year and then only get to spend our two weeks of vacation on fly fishing. We fly hundreds of miles to rivers that measure fish-per-mile in the thousands and have elusive new species to catch. We spend thousands of dollars on gear to maximize our precious time on the water. This film hearkens back to the time in our youth when our fishing gear was easily carried in one hand, when we measured our trips in steps, where each fish mattered and every species was relished.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Highly recommended!. I have to admit, this is one of my favorite short films of this season. It is exactly what I look for in terms of programming for youth and families. It is bright, happy, imaginative and inspiring! What a delight. And the ending just brings a huge grin to your face. This short film shows how meditative fishing can be while on a summer vacation or weekend getaway. It's a great incentive to wake up in the morning, especially when you've got a special fishing pole to use. The Fisher Girl goes straight for her fishing rod and fly lures, skipping breakfast. Dressed in bright pink jacket and matching shoes, she wades out into the pond water, casts out her line and quickly catches a couple of fish. Based on how gently she removes the hook from each fish's mouth, you feel her admiration for the creatures. You get the sense that these fish will live happily ever after in her indoor fish tank. They will skip the dinner table! I love the cinematography. It has great camera angles and a wonderfully playful point of view. The underwater shots are exceptionally fun. The camera angles make the fish seem a lot larger underwater, compared to how puny they look dangling from the fishing line out of the water. The background music sounds very Oriental and gives the impression of underwater motion. The outer cylinder that the fishing rod is stored in raises my curiosity. Why is a fishing pole stashed inside a decorated container? It seems very Japanese in nature. My favorite part is watching just the girls' feet and hands move across the screen during the first half of the film. You do not see her face for quite a while, so it makes one wonder where she is going and what is she about to do. I also like the way she gingerly and respectfully removes the rod from its container. It seems as if it is some type of traditional ceremony, maybe passed down from one generation of her family to the next. The message of the film seems to be about respecting your property and also valuing what nature has to offer. Treat your equipment well and you will live to fish another day! It inspired me to try fishing as a hobby. Maybe it will help me wake up earlier in the morning with a stronger sense of purpose. Perhaps it will motivate me to set up an indoor aquarium at home and raise some tropical fish. It gets me thinking about tying my own fly lures, since I like making things and working with my hands. Fishing would also be a fun thing to do with friends. It seems like a pleasant social activity. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18. I think it would make a dandy addition to any film festival for youth and families. By Jeff M., and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Critics
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 4 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


ASTRONAUT, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
ASTRONAUT, THE
ADAM MURRAY
Series: SHORTS 5-12
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - Jacob's dream of becoming an astronaut may be at risk.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Astronaut is an adorable short film that touches upon the importance of inspirations. One appealing aspect of this film is that it teaches children that their dreams are not ridiculous and anything you dream can be achieved. You can be anything you want! The short film also stresses the importance of not letting bullies get you down and to believe in yourself.

The film follows a young boy, Jacob, whose dream is to become an astronaut and go to outer space. As the film progresses, Jacob is teased at school by a fellow classmate who tells him that he can't become an astronaut because it isn't a real career. An interesting aspect about all the key actors is that they are all related. The director, Adam Murray, uses his children to play the young boy and girl which makes the film seem even more realistic and relevant because they are so believable.

The production quality for this short film is extremely well executed, especially for a first time filmmaker. The special effects in the beginning are astounding and out of this world. The lighting is well done and the visual quality is impressive. The only issue I have in terms of audio quality is that the filmmaker should have put a microphone on the boy, because it is difficult to hear him speak.

My favorite aspect of this film is the relationship between the father and the son. Also, I like the costumes. They are adorable and really showcase Jacob's love for space. The message of the film is simple: never give up on your dreams and don't let anyone tell you that you can't do something. I give this 4 out of 5 stars because it is a great story with a very positive message. I recommend it for ages 5 to 12 and adults will enjoy it as well. Reviewed by Chandler D., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see Juror Comments
Runtime: 7 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


SGT STUBBY - AN UNLIKELY HERO

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
SGT STUBBY - AN UNLIKELY HERO
RICHARD LANNI
Series: FEATURE, AGES 6-12
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - With World War I looming, a young Army Pvt. Robert Conroy is adopted by a stray, stump-tailed terrier. Conroy names his new friend Stubby and gives him a home, a family, and a chance to embark on the adventure that would define a century. The two quickly find themselves in the trenches of France and on the path to history. French soldier Gaston Baptiste befriends the duo and accompanies them along their epic journey through harsh conditions and incredible acts of courage.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This film tells a beautiful story about the bond between a decorated war dog and a young private that lasts an entire war. The storyline follows Robert Conroy who joins the war effort when the U.S enters World War I. At his training camp, Conroy meets a stray dog named Stubby and his platoon takes in the dog as its own. Stubby becomes their mascot and subsequently heads to war after he shows great performance training with the soldiers. I like the World War I setting of this film. It is quite a somber historical period for an animated film to take place in. Few animated films have ever taken place during this conflict. While it does not address the bleaker parts of WWI, it does explore some sad topics. I appreciated that it does this, since most animated films don't. Stubby is very likeable as a relentless protagonist. The film puts ventures into interesting territory placing such an innocent creature in a non-innocent world. The 2D animation suits the film and well executed. The production design by Celine Desrumaux is very true to the time period, without romanticizing it. The score, by Patrick Doyle, is very patriotic, giving a sense of pride for one's country. The first and second act flow well, but the third act gets to be a wee bit long. I particularly like how WWI is explained as it helps you relate better to the conflict. This film makes an excellent way for children to learn about WWI. The voice over cast is terrific, key cast members include Logan Lerman, Helena Bonham Carter and G�rard Depardieu. Yes. This film is entertaining and heartwarming and I highly recommend this it for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival. It is particularly suitable to any festival with a focus on war heroes or history or dogs! I recommend it for ages 6 to 12 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Benjamin P. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic and KIDS FIRST! Adult Reviewer.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 90 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 6-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


DINO DAN TREK'S ADVENTURES: THE COMPLETE SERIES

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DINO DAN TREK'S ADVENTURES: THE COMPLETE SERIES       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 - In this complete series set, enjoy 50 dino-filled adventures with junior dinosaur expert, Trek Henderson, as he imagines dinosaurs in the real world! While Trek's brother, Dan, is away helping his dad, it's time for Trek to get his own dino time. Trek is going to finish some of the experiments in Dino Dan's Field Guide including seeing at least eighteen dinosaurs that Dan has never seen before! Trek will even meet marine reptiles for the very first time! It's time to join Trek Henderson as he embarks on one dino adventure after another and all in his very own way.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Dino Dan: Trek's Adventures: The Complete Series is a series for young kids with a lot of excitement, and fun adventures to go on! Kids will love this series if they have a big imagination and of course, have a love of dinosaurs.

On this DVD, there are 50 dino-filled adventures with the dinosaur expert, Trek Henderson. Trek imagines different types of dinosaurs in the real world throughout all of his experiences! While Trek's brother, Dan is away helping his dad with something, Trek takes over and entertains himself with his dinosaur world. The goal is to finish up some of the experiments that Dan has started. Trek even meets some new dinosaurs and marine reptiles that he hasn't seen before! Join Trek on his wonderful adventures throughout the world of dinosaurs!

One reason I really like this show is how they incorporate educational lessons into it. It's not everyday that you see a kids TV show that includes all kinds of educational facts within the story line. This is exactly what this series does. For example, in the episode "Trek Rex," Trek is having trouble figuring out what dinosaur he wants to dress up as for a party. Throughout the episode, he has various encounters with several dinosaurs to help him make his final decision. Trek and the dinosaurs' encounters happen in the real world, in front of real people, so he is imagining it. I believe that creates a connection between Trek and kids in the real world, since many have big imaginations.

The overall message in this series is that it's okay to have an imagination and even share it with others! Trek has no problem sharing his findings out loud for everyone to see and has no shame about doing that. This is what kids should feel. And, sharing their findings throughout their childhood is a cool thing to do.

I rate this show 4 out of 5 stars for its playful storyline, exciting cast, imagination and much more. I would love to see the storyline develop more, but it's perfect for younger kids. I recommend it for ages 5 through 10 . This is available now on DVD, so check it out.

By Imani B.G, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 16
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This series is great for keeping younglings entertained over the summer. With over 500 minutes in its 50 episodes, this will keep them busy and will keep them interested. I found Trek talking to an imaginary dinosaur somewhat strange but hey, it doesn't seem to bother his mom.

The storyline is about when Trek's brother who goes away to dig up fossils and Trek misses him. Then, one day a package arrives in the mail with a message from Dan asking Trek to help him do some dinosaur experiments. In later episodes, he gets better and better at conducting these experiments. One of his tasks is to find out if albertosaurus hunt in packs. For this, he gets a ham sandwich and gets the albertosaurus to chase him.

Trek is played by Trek Buccino who lives in Toronto, Ontario and attended Claude Watson School for the Arts. He has also been in Pacific Rim and PJ Masks. Trek's mom is played by Allana Harkin who has been nominated for the Primetime Emmy award for Full Frontal which she produced.

What I like about the show is that it is enjoyable to watch while you learn some facts along the way. I recommend it for ages 3 to 8 and give it 3 out of 5 stars. It is available now on Digital and DVD/Blu-ray so, check it out.

By Abraham F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 575 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 12.99
Media: DVD
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF THE ROSE

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF THE ROSE       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 - Follow the Little Prince, a hero of multiple generations, as he experiences brand new adventures with iconic characters based on the masterpiece by Antoine de St. Exup�ry. In The Planet of the Rose, the Little Prince believes he has succeeded in getting rid of the Snake after a deadly battle. He can now finally continue to find the Rose's planet for his dear Rose. When the Little Prince and Rose reach the planet of the Rose, strange crabs live on the surface and are hardly hospitable. There is no trace of vegetation and no trace of the Rose people. Convinced they have reached the wrong destination, the Little Prince is ready to leave when they find some of the people. However, the Rose people are asleep and fossilized. The Little Prince and Rose need to bring them back to life. Unfortunately, that's not all they will need to do as the Little Prince's enemy, the Snake, hasn't died after all.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I truly enjoyed watching this show. Based on the book series, it has a ring of positivity to it. The Little Prince is an incredibly good and popular book series and a wonderfully animated film series. The symbolisms associated with Rose, the Fox and the Snake may be lost on the youngest viewers. However, school age children will benefit from an increased imaginative mindset and the good vs. evil theme. The flow of the story lags a bit at times, but it is quite pleasant to watch. The Little Prince is definitely a positive role model in terms of protecting the ones he loves such as Rose and other protagonists. They all help each other out of peril like when the spirits help Fox from falling into outer space. The computer animation is exceptional. The characters, locale and colors are easy for viewers to identify with.

One aspect that really stands out are the geographical indicators notating inter-dimensional aspects of outer space. The cover design showing the Little Prince looking out into the distance along with Rose is big, colorful and enticing. Young people would enjoy this film because it is adventurous, the setting is unusual and the graphics are terrific.

The Little Prince series is based upon the teachings of Saint Exupery and holds morals based upon religious values. Although secular in tone, the theme of good overtaking evil is important for children to hear in order to give them hope in this world. The adventure of outer space will draw most children in. This film might get children thinking about other planets and the science of astronomy and geography. It definitely will expand their imaginations. Questioning and probing take place. For example, when the Little Prince talks about traveling to the Rose planet and the Geographer states that they might possibility be "lost forever in infinity" while trying to voyage there. The Little Prince determines it is worth the risk for Rose.

There are no bonus features on the DVD. One issue I have is that when you stop the movie and come back to it later, it starts all over at the beginning. It does not start where it left off, which is a nuisance. Also, there are no foreign language subtitles, which is something I missed. I give this 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 13, as well as adults. It is available on DVD now, so check it out.

Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Once again, the little prince and the adorable Rose are getting back together and it's fantastic how everything is all happy and joyous for their reunion.

It's very fun and interesting and I absolutely love this DVD. The thing about this story, which is very fun and adorable is that they put a new twist on it. And there are lots of new characters as well as old characters from the series. I absolutely love that they brought the King and the Salesclerk back. I really like that they add new characters to the old ones we love and adore. Everyone will have a character that they can relate to. It is really fun and I love the scene when the Fox comes and they gets knocked off the rope and then he gets to meet the King and the Salesclerk again. It's a glorious movie, very hilarious and silly, which I like. Also, the Little Prince is, once again, a fantastic character. He is definitely my favorite character because he has a lot of wonderful traits. He's very kind and generous, which is glorious. At the same time, he serves as a great role model, and one that kids should see more often. It is good to see someone take their duties seriously, especially helping others. That's what we get in the prince, all the time. I also love little Rose. She's very adorable. She is very funny when she is arguing with the Fox. The two of them are just like yin and yang.

Now, one thing that is just fascinating about this show is the animation. If you think about it, when you look at it you think, "Wow! I'm stunned." I think this show is something that will inspire many young children who might think about traveling to another the moon or Mars. I think that idea is fascinating. I have always loved astronauts. That's what makes this DVD so perfect. The animation is so detailed and colorful and each planet has its own unique twist and turns. By just using words, a little bit of script and then adding all the colors in the DVD make this show perfect. I love that the animation seems to be a mix of anime and origami. They work perfectly together.

I really love that this show is something the entire family can enjoy together. I think it's suitable for ages 5 to 18, as well as adults. I definitely give this 5 out of 5 stars. This is available now on DVD so be sure to check it out! You don't want to miss this one.

By Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 85 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 7.99
Media: DVD
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC: APPLEJACK

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC: APPLEJACK       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Think work on the farm is easy? Then you don't know jack - Applejack, that is! Honesty, patience and friendships are tested in a new collection of adventures featuring everypony's favorite four-hooved apple lover! Join Applejack and her very best pals - Twilight Sparkle, Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Fluttershy and Spike - as they experience the power and magic of true friendship. Bonus Feature: sing-along.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Each episode in this collection is approximately 25 minutes in length. The storylines are very straightforward and the moral messages are charming and clear. They are very engaging for the target age. The characters draw you in with their multi-dimensional human personality traits. The language is quite suitable for the audience as well, although younger kids may not pick up every single word. The overall messages are what are important. Applejack, the main character, maintains an integrity even if others do something different. If she does something wrong, then she accepts the mistake as well as its consequences and, more importantly, apologizes. The other characters hold the same level of integrity as well. Questioning and probing are developed when certain problematic situations take place. An example is when a pair of scam artists dupe a crowd at a circus presentation into believing that a miracle product cures ills, Applejack instantly feels there is something fishy going on and is concerned when grandma pony purchases the elixir. In another episode, Applejack's younger sisters and friends want to help build carts for a race, but the older sisters take over designing the carts. The race ends in a big crash, destroying the carts. The younger siblings assert that the holder ones took over their project and the resolution is for the younger ponies to rebuild their carts without interference from the older siblings. I love the humor in these stories, the visual appeal, interesting storylines and great morals that children can easily pick up. The animation is big and colorful. There are five episodes and bonus singalong. The messages address how to be a person of high character, getting along with others, owning up to mistakes and apologizing. I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 9. Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Even though these episodes are clearly for younger kids, I can't deny that I actually really like these episodes. I don't think I'll actually start watching the show, but this show can be enjoyed by the whole family because it is very entertaining.

This DVD is a collection of five shorts from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, with most of the episodes centered around the character, Applejack. She is an important character in every episode, even the ones that are not centered around her. I am aware that My Little Pony actually has some pretty interesting stories and can get pretty dark, but these episodes are filler. They do also reference major events in past episodes and one episode has two characters who appear to be recurring characters, so I really wouldn't recommend this DVD as a way to fully understand what takes place on the show.

That being said, Applejack has a sweet southern accent, works on a farm and appears to epitomize honesty. I like that My Little Pony shows have a moral compass that teach positive lessons. This show should make lots of parents happy. My Little Pony has a ton of effort and care put into each episode. I'm very impressed with this show. Often times in shows, filler episodes are boring and they make you wish you were watching a story driven episode. This isn't the case with these stories!

Now, My Little Pony has some really interesting characters. I love character driven stories and that best describes this series. The main cast consists of six characters, or "The Mane 6" as they're often referred to outside the show. By the way, it's an amazing pun. I really like when shows have a large cast of recurring characters that really make their world feel real. It helps world-building, character dynamics and of course, I love talking about characters in media. As I mentioned, these episodes focus mainly on one character, Applejack, but sometimes the other members of The Mane 6 share the spotlight. If you like Twilight Sparkle, Rainbow Dash and Rarity, then you will love this series because they are highly featured. My main issue is that, ironically, my favorite member of The Mane 6, Fluttershy isn't in any of these episodes. I know the episodes are about Applejack, but from what I've seen of recent My Little Pony, Fluttershy is the most under-developed of the group. So please, My Little Pony creators, show some love and character development to Fluttershy.

I give this DVD 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 12. The DVD is available now, so look for it.

Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Howdy there everyone. Get ready for a brand new adventure with my favorite pony, Applejack! We will be exploring the terrific apple farm and seeing all the wondrous things Applejack, and her wonderful family, do there. I enjoyed all the new episodes in My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic: Applejack because they show Applejack and her family in Ponyville.

Who can argue with Applejack? I know I can't! After all, she personifies the element of truth and that is one of her best qualities. Since she knows how to spot a lie at first sight, she makes the perfect detective. This is why "Leap of Faith" is my favorite episode, hooves down. I can't get enough of Applejack's detective skills and Granny Smith reliving her youth. There is just too much fun and humor in one episode and therefore it is so enjoyable to watch. Two of my other favorite characters are in this episode and they are brewing up trouble - aka Flim and Flam are back in town.

The pony who steals the show is defiantly Applejack. After all this DVD is all about her and she surely takes advantage of that. I would love to have Applejack as a friend and a neighbor, not only for her honestly, but because she is kind and gracious as well. Her sweet southern accent is hard to resist.

The animation in these episodes is very detailed and, once again, looks as if there is a pony running around this wonderful city. I adore the way the town looks with all the bright colors and fun characters. The barn is especially great. It looks as if you could go and pick apples right from the trees. That is one of the great things about this series. The colors appeal to both young and old audiences because of how vivid they are.

Another thing to look for in this DVD are the fun bonus features such as the sing-along and the amazing new cook book from Applejack. You will find recipes for caramel apples, baked apples and spiced apple cider - all of which are kid friendly. The sing-along is great for kids who want to become world renowned singers because they can sing along with their favorite My little Pony Songs with Applejack and the rest of the main six.

I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 15 and give it 5 out 5 apple stars. It is available on DVD and Digital now so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 110 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 13.98
Media: DVD
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MAYA THE BEE 2: THE HONEY GAMES BLU-RAY/DVD

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MAYA THE BEE 2: THE HONEY GAMES BLU-RAY/DVD       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 2-5
Topic - Family
Description - After a slow harvest season, the very survival of the hive is threatened. Maya, and her sidekick, Willy, go to Buzztropolis, where the Empress invites them to participate in the Honey Games. But if they lose, the hive will have to give the Empress all of their summer honey! Needless to say, Maya and Willy's teammates are neither enthusiastic nor athletic, but Maya remains positive and exclaims that "every bug has a talent!" Can Maya and Team Poppy win and secure her hive's future? Only if Maya is able to gain new friends and learn about teamwork, responsibility, and overcoming their differences! Bonus features: The Making of Maya the Bee 2; Original teaser and trailers.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - My six-year-old granddaughter really enjoyed this DVD. The storyline is quite interesting in showing the life of bees and how they gather honey and support the Queen and all the other bees in the colony. The story line continues with the Queen Bee of Poppy Meadow and her bees gathering honey for the winter. She realizes that they may not have enough honey for the hive to last the winter when she gets word that the Empress, her estranged sister, has declared that the Queen's colony has been selected for The Honey Games. The Hive of Poppy Meadow is required to honor the Empress to donate 50% of their honey. They don't have enough honey for their own hive to survive the winter, so the request is a difficult one to abide by. Maya and her best friend Willie go the Empress and please their case.

The story line is easy to follow and suitable for the target audience. The vocabulary and concepts are also right on target. There is a lot of teamwork shown and sometimes Maya tries things on her own but soon realizes that is a mistake and relies on her friends to help. There are some consequences and they are repaired by the characters in a nice way. Each becomes more respectful of the others as time passes.

The visual appeal of this DVD is appropriate and interesting enough for the youth it was designed for. The DVD is animated and colorful and lively in action to keep the interests of the intended audiences. I feel that the storyline of this is quite entertaining for youth and the pictures of the bees are so cute! The characters on the cover are so interesting you wonder what kind of trouble are they about to get into!

In terms of the message of this story, as the story develops, we discover that the Empress and the Queen are actually sisters that do not get along. Towards the end they make up and realize they love each other and miss being together. Forgiveness becomes the overall theme as we see the sisters resolve their differences. Also, during the competition games the contestants learn a few lessons about fairness and love. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 9.

Reviewed by Tina B., KIDS FIRST! Adult juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I really enjoyed watching this! This animated film has many underlying messages without becoming confusing. Each of the characters have their own strong personalities which makes their interactions interesting. The plot line is intriguing also.

The main character, Maya is a bee who dreams of competing in The Honey Games. One day she has a chance to make her dream comes true, but it will put her entire city at risk. The Empress demands Maya's city to give up half of their honey to contribute to The Honey Games. They aren't allowed to participate, but are forced to give up their honey. Maya believes that this is outrageous and challenges the Empress. If Maya wins, she doesn't have to give up any honey. But if she loses, they have to give up all of their honey and her city will starve.

Maya (Coco Jack Gillies) is a well developed character. Coco Jack Gillies makes her voice distinctly sound differently which is good for Maya who goes through a lot of emotions. Gillies can sound distressed, guilty, ecstatic and hopeful.

The animation is done really well. The quality is great and all of the little details contribute to make it seem very realistic. The music also is very suitable for the film and sets the mood in the various scenes.

My favorite part is when Maya's best friend Willy realizes that Violet, a bee who is a bully, is trying to sabotage them. Willy has a slight crush on Violet, which blinds him of all the mean things she is doing to Maya. Finally Willy realizes what is happening and stands up for Maya. Even through all these hardships, Maya and Willy find it in their hearts to forgive Violet for everything that she has done. That is one of the messages in this film.

Other messages address how everyone has their own special talent, how you should believe in yourself and that no matter how small you are, you can still make a difference. These messages are really important and give kids a lot of self confidence. I love how they incorporate all of these wonderful messages into the story without making the film trivial.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 10. This DVD is available now so, be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

The animation in this film is very high quality, except for the characters' hair. It's a bit odd that they put so much detail into the bodies of the bees, but none into their hair. For me, this movie is a bit too predictable. I like more exciting movies.

The storyline in Maya The Bee 2: The Honey Games follows a little bee named Maya who accidentally embarrasses the empress of Buzztropolis and is forced to try to win The Honey Games to prove that her hive are not all foolish bees. The Honey Games are a series of physical challenges. Maya must win them with a team of oddball bugs or the Empress will take all her hive's summer honey and Maya's hive won't survive the winter.

The main characters in this movie are, Maya, (Coco Jack Gillies), the leader of Team Poppy and Willi (Benson Jack Anthony), Maya's sidekick. Other characters include, Bedford, (Cam Ralph), a bedbug, Spinder (Jordan Hare), a vegetarian spider, Craig, (Jimmy James Eaton) a cockroach that fears dirt, Arnie, (David Collins) and Barney, (Shane Dundas) two ants with helmets, and the villain, Violet, (Linda Ngo). My favorite of these character is Willi because he is scared to do all the stuff Maya wants to do, but Maya won't listen to him and he is forced to do those things anyway. I find this funny.

My favorite scene is when Maya tries to get a honey treat away from Willi so she can give it to the Empress, but instead she accidently throws the treat at the Empress and embarrasses her. This scene is funny, because of the way Maya tries to help her but instead she gets stuck to the Empress's face. Throughout the movie Maya must learn about teamwork and overcoming differences. That leads us to the big message of this movie which is everybody has a talent or, as Maya says it, every bug has a talent. That means that nobody is useless.

I rate this movie 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 7 because it has a good message. I think adults might enjoy watching this movie with their children. This movie is available now on Blue Ray and DVD so, check it out.

Reviewed by Damon F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 83 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 18.97
Media: DVD
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DIGIMON ADVENTURE TRI: LOSS

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DIGIMON ADVENTURE TRI: LOSS       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - Digimon Adventure Tri: Loss is the fourth in a series of six feature length movies. After the "reboot" and Meicoomon's rampage, Tai and friends arrive in the Digital World. They reunite with their partner Digimon, who have lost all their memories. As everyone discusses what they should do from here in the Digital World, Meicoomon suddenly appears and then disappears. She still has her memories for some reason as she wanders around, looking for Meiko. Meanwhile in the real world, Nishijima receives word that Himekawa has gone missing. As he investigates, he determines that there's been some hidden agenda behind her behavior up to this point. It has something to do with an event in the past that determined both their destinies... Special Features: "The Evolution So Far" - Star Joshua Seth Catches Us Up To The Events Of Digimon Adventure tri.: Loss Digimon Adventure tri: Loss is the sequel to Digimon Adventure tri: Confession.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This DVD will certainly entertain the viewer. It has many moving parts, flows well from beginning to end. Younger kids will not understand all the themes, unless they are familiar with the series. The protagonists are polite to each other and concerned for one another. They express emotions in an appropriate manner such as speaking directly about their feelings - "I was scared when you left me." Problem-solving is demonstrated by the characters working together. This concept fits the target age group. Viewers learn that when people work together, the results are positive. This film utilizes Japanese animation which is appealing to children. The color scheme is not brightly colored and the artwork is quite detailed. Young people need to have hope in this world and the theme that prevails here is of good overcoming evil. The storyline is very involved and mind-stimulating. The DVD's menu allows you to select specific scenes and there are bonus feature. I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 13. Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Digimon Adventure Tri: Loss entertained me because of its wonderful animation and impressive voice acting. This is sure to be a watch for Digimon and anime fans.

The story follows the events after the reboot where all Digimon were forced to forget their partners. In wake of this, the shrewd Joe Kido (Robbie Daymond) sets out to hunt them while they are at their weakest. To defend themselves, the team must unite and strengthen their Digimon to match up to Kido's wits. During this, a hopeless Sora (Colleen O'Shaugnessey) tries to reunite with her estranged Biyomon (Cherami Leigh), as Kido targets her first.

Colleen O'Shaugnessey, as Sora, excellently presents her sorrow and selflessness for Biyomon. However, their sullen interactions become rather repetitive and forced as the story progresses. Miho Arakawa, as Meiko, splendidly portrays her reformation from saving Meicoomon, using this hope to brighten Sora. Robbie Daymond, as Joe Kido, is my favorite character due to his clever performance full of charisma as he proves to be a force to be reckoned with. Also, his deceiving escapes add a theatric grandeur to the character. Tom Fahn, as Agumon, exhibits his leadership through his care and demands of the other Digimon. Cherami Leigh, as Biyomon, depicts an equally well acted counterpart to Sora with her inability to pair with her. Kate Higgons, as Meicoomon, spectacularly reforms from being the main antagonist of the last movie to one that is heroic following the reboot.

The direction by Keitaro Motonaro wonderfully adapts with a similar approach to the source magna. My favorite scene is the resolution between Sora and Biyomon. Its conclusion adds a touching ending to this mixed bag of a plot. My only problems with this movie are in its inconsistent writing which switches from one tone to the next or even underplays many character arcs. Also, the amount of farcical humor could have taken a break to service the plot's serious developments.

The message of the movie is to always take care of yourself first before concerning others. Sora's insecurities increase while trying to reconcile with Biyomon, but this leaves her and other team members susceptible to attack. I give this film 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18 because of its frequent action. The movie is available now on DVD and Blu-Ray, so check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Runtime: 100 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 11.98
Media: DVD
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PUP STAR: WORLD TOUR

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
PUP STAR: WORLD TOUR       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
AIR BUD ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - PUP STAR is back, with an all-new movie that takes the popular singing dogs on trip around the world, where Tiny and friends find fantastic new songs and meet exciting new canine singers that prove music really is the universal language.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - In some ways, this film reminds me of a combination of The Voice and American Idol, but with dogs as contestants and judges. I have to admit that I had some trouble getting into the film at the beginning, because it seems a bit too unrealistic. I had trouble imagining these dogs as music and rap stars. The beginning is a bit slow and then, someplace in the middle, it became much more entertaining. The songs and soundtrack are my favorite part of the film, but some of the dog characters really grow on you. Even though the storyline is quite predictable, it is entertaining. I really like that the tour goes to different countries. The characters are fun to watch and it has a great ending. It is a good film for families to watch together. I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 11. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This movie is definitely made for younger kids. The storyline isn't very complicated and it is pretty predictable, but still very enjoyable for the whole family.

The story is about the puppy celebrity Tiny, now a Judge on Pup Stars World Tour, and has selected a dog named Julio as her representative. The issue is, Julio is helping Bark, the villain from the first two movies, win Pup Stars.

Because almost the entire cast is comprised of talking dogs, the editing needs to look good. And, like previous movies, it really does look like the dogs are talking. I can't even imagine how difficult it must be to film and edit this movie. In the scenes where Julio performs, he does all these crazy moves and twists and - he looks really good. Kudos to the editors, Jason Dale and Nik Svab. They say it is difficult to work with kids and animals.

One thing I liked in the previous Pup Star movie is the song that Tiny sang. It really was an ear worm. In Pup Star: World Tour there are tons of new songs, with some really talented singers and interesting cultural backgrounds. Because each contestant is from a different country, the songs differ depending on the culture. I really like that about these songs. It fits well with the message they are trying to spread about being united through music. Shout Out to Brahm Wenger.

I feel that, in this movie especially, the writers work with the fact that dogs in this make believe world are actors, singers and similar. There are dog soap operas and there are also tabloids covering dog news. It is as if dogs are not our pets, but more like our equals. Some people already consider them their kids, so I guess it is not that far fetched. Little stuff like that really helps the world building. Also, one of my main issues with the second Pup Stars movie was that I felt the human characters were too oblivious and easily manipulated by the villain's plans. Thankfully, it's different here. The villain's plan is a little more complicated, so I could actually see how the human characters could believe what was going on. Also, I surprisingly laughed a lot. The way certain scenes are shot and acted is just hilarious!

Now, my one question is, how many more Pup Stars movies will there be? The ending of this movie serves really well as the conclusion to the series. But, my guess is that this won't likely be the last movie.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 18. If you like dogs and music from all over, I recommend this for you in particular. It comes out on May 5, 2018 so look for it.

By Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 14

Pup Star is back and bigger than ever, as the hit singing pup competition goes global! I am totally into this movie! It is absolutely hilarious - very entertaining, witty, sassy, incredible and completely a family Friday- night movie to enjoy. It is also perfect for dog lovers.

I love this heart-warming film because it is different, talking dogs... now that's pretty different. The dogs bring a fun and quirky style with the singing and dancing that will bring the best out of you. This is definitely a fun, big scale musical adventure.

The story follows Tiny, a charming Yorkie, as she joins the launch of the Pup Star World Tour as a celebrity judge. It takes the popular singing dogs on a trip around the world where Tiny and friends find wonderful new songs to sing from different countries. Each judge chooses their favorite contestant to compete for the new title of Global Pup Star Champion. This film literally makes you get up and dance. When the contest faces a severe threat from a trio of conspirators, you have go see the movie to find out how that is resolved.

Directed and written by Robert Vince, the lead characters and the talent that voices them include Tiny (Kaitlyn Maher), Julio (Jorge Diaz), Grandpa Growl (John Ratzenberger), Simon Growl (Steve Valentine), Bark (George Newbern), Shep (Reggie De Leon), Rover (Jonathon Mangum), Jimmy Kibble (Brian Hull), Steven (David DeLuise), Butch (Danny Woodbury), Raji (Maulik Pancholy), Lou (Makenzie Moss), Ming (April Hong), Juan (Steve Zaragoza), Kano (Diedrich Bader), Dog Gnarly (Ziggy Marley) and many more.

The dogs' costumes are glamorous, with all the sparkles, glitter and beautiful colors. The colors really bring great visual effects to the film. When all the dogs from different countries come out to sing in their cultural customs, it really drew my attention. I loved seeing all the different backgrounds and vibes in all of the dogs. The music is remarkable. It really fits the theme of the film and paints pictures of all the different cultures.

My favorite characters are Tiny, who unquestionably is the most adorable judge, Shep, the funny service manager and Julio, the Mexican pup with a big heart. Most importantly, all the characters are amazing. My absolute favorite part is when the cheaters (I'm not going to tell you who they are) get disqualified from the competition.

The message of the story is "cheaters never win; winners never cheat." I'll admit, I've never understood the utility of cheating. This film definitely calls you to action. It has a positive message that promotes positive social behavior. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and definitely recommend it for ages 5 to 14 years old, as well as adults. The film will be released on May 5, 2018 in Canada and USA so look for it!

By Nathalia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
Runtime: 87 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


SECRETS OF THE DEAD: SCANNING THE PYRAMIDS

SECRETS OF THE DEAD: SCANNING THE PYRAMIDS
PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 6-18
Topic - Family
Description - Passionate about ancient history, the global team of Scan Pyramids consists of particle physicists, experts in innovation and 3D technologies, and engineers in thermal imaging from Egypt, France, Japan, and Canada. For more than two years, they explored every corner of the pyramid, using non-invasive technologies including infrared cameras, 3D scanners and cosmological particle detectors located inside and outside the monument. Their search detected unknown cavities in the Great Pyramid of Khufu for the first time since the Middle Ages. Viewers are able to witness Scan Pyramid's adventures and successes in this extraordinary scientific and historical journey through time and space that led to this historic discovery. A production of Bonne Pioche T�l�vision in association with THIRTEEN Productions LLC for WNET, Curiosity Stream, France T�l�visions, HIP Institute, and NHK. Directed by Florence Tran with the collaboration of Pascal Cuissot. Produced by Bonne Pioche. Stephanie Carter is executive producer for Secrets of the Dead.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This film is simply fascinating. We follow a remarkable scientific team of people using physics, science and technology to unlock the secrets of the pyramids. It is not only entertaining, but has so much educational value as well. It is amazing to watch as those involved in the scanned pyramid project unlock the secrets of the pyramids and find proof and real evidence. It flows well. The scenes of the pyramids are truly amazing! It's a real mystery and a great opportunity to see what lies within the Great Pyramid at Giza. This is an historic discovery that the whole family will enjoy learning about. I really like learning about the non-invasive way this team of scientists use technology to scan the pyramids and, once again, this film shows just how far technology has come even in the last 20 years. I give this 5 out of 5 and recommend it for ages 6 to 18 as well as adults. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 55 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 6-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 24.99
Media: DVD


MOLANG: SEASON 2

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
MOLANG: SEASON 2       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 2-6
Topic - Family
Description - Join Molang, a round, fluffy, and happy rabbit, and his friend, Piu Piu, a poised, timid, and reserved yellow chick, as they explore everyday life. Despite their many differences, Molang and Piu Piu enjoy a special friendship. They have amazing times together ranging from the ordinary to the extraordinary. From finding themselves in the middle of the jungle, going to the circus or enjoying a rainy day, Molang and Piu Piu embrace every daily adventure together. Who knew dancing in the rain with your best friend could be so much fun? No matter what happens, every single moment with these two is filled with sheer happiness. Embark on 52 lovable adventures with Molang and Piu Piu!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This charming DVD takes you from point A to point B quickly in a manner appropriate for the target age. There is no language spoken except an alien language spoken by visitors. We follow a day in the lives of Molang and Piu, Piu and how they get along on Earty. The show is filled with bright colors along with characters and images that are drawn big and simple. This is an animated series with 52 five-minute adventures. The menu allows one to select a specific episode. You can also select different languages. The show demonstrates positive social skills such as how to get along with others. Themes covered in all the shows include happiness, friendship, caring and respect. I thoroughly enjoyed it and found it quite appealing and engaging. I highly recommend it for ages 1 to 5 and give it 4.5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The adorable, warm-hearted duo of Molang and Piu Piu are back in Molang Season 2 directed by Marie-Caroline Villand and Stephanie Miziak! The writers compose plots that are incredibly simple, yet engaging and expressive. The directors are skilled in easily conveying the plot, jokes and emotion without the use of dialogue.

These stories take Molang and Piu Piu on adventures near and far, as they help others and bring joy to the lives of everyone they touch. They often run into a friend or neighbor who could use a helping hand or a mood boost. Molang and Piu Piu find unique solutions to everyday experiences and make many friends along the way.

The lexicon of Molang and Piu Piu is incomprehensible, so the animation, sound effects and music work together to transcend words. The animation uses simple images to convey the characters' ideas and concepts. For example, when Piu Piu or Molang have a solution to a complication, a thought bubble pops up to show it in a quick image. The sound effects are either bright or dark, based on the mood of the scene. For example, when Piu Piu gets stressed, which is quite often, he screeches in distress. Furthermore the music, composed by Nicholas Varley, is very adventurous and upbeat, especially during the traveling scenes. It is lively and adds all the more to the jovial ambience.

The art of the animation is pure and simple, yet gives a relaxed and easy going aura. The colors are soft, not too bright or too dark, making the visuals sweet and appealing. Many of the objects such as the houses, characters, trees, vehicles and hills are all rounded creating the huggable, lovable world of Molang.

For me, the most appealing part is the happiness that surrounds each and every episode. Piu Piu and Molang are inseparable and their friendship is beautifully strong. This foundation sets the mood of each episode and their kindness reaches out to my heart.

The message of Molang Season 2 is to brighten the days of those around you and to help those in need. I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 10. It is available on DVD now so, be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Sahiba K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Runtime: 185 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-5
Suggested Retail Price: $ 7.5
Media: DVD
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POCOYO: SEASON 2

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
POCOYO: SEASON 2       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 2-6
Topic - Family
Description - Meet Pocoyo, the unforgettable little boy with a very big personality! Your child will learn through laughter with Pocoyo and all his friends - Elly, Pato, Loula, and Sleepy Bird. Join Pocoyo and his friends as they embark on fifty-two entertaining and amusing adventures! Whether it's celebrating a birthday party for Elly to overcoming one's fears to ride down the big, scary slide to playing detective with friends, every day is a special day with Pocoyo and friends! 52 episodes, over 6 hours of fun, entertaining and learning.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Pocoyo is a funny, kind-hearted toddler with charisma that goes on for days! He has many friends that he goes on adventures with, but my son (2 years old) really loves Sleepy Bird. Sleepy Bird is a cute little bird that is seemingly always asleep and even flies with her eyes closed. My son giggles his little heart out whenever she comes on the screen. Watching Pocoyo interact with his friends is great. They are all so kind to each other. This whole series focuses on getting through strange or difficult situations via laughter. It really emphasizes the importance of taking a minute to collect your thoughts and laugh away the negativity. I truly love that. It's such a wonderful thing to teach a child. The show's animation is computer generated with a very straightforward design. The simplicity of the characters and sets are eye catching, yet don't over-stimulate the viewer or take attention away from the stories. The music is cheerful and enjoyable. I recommend this DVD for ages 2 to 5 and it 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Pocoyo is a unique show for kids. It has cool, clay-like characters and takes place in an entirely empty world. The bright, colorful characters stand out against the plain, white background. The animation style is very clear and calming which fits the personalities of the characters quite well. I like the decision to use very normal toys such as trains and blocks along with unusual characters. It creates a nice contrast.

This is a DVD set with 50 episodes. Each episode follows Pocoyo and his friends Elly, Pato, Loula, Baby Bird, Sleepy Bird and Caterpillar who find something or make something new and then, they all use the item. I like how many possibilities this format provides.

My favorite episode is Guess What? In this episode, Pocoyo and his friends play a game with the narrator. In the game, Pocoyo makes a shape with the things around him. Then, the narrator must guess what the object is. Another episode I really like is Mr. Big Duck. In this episode, Pato finds a pair of sunglasses. The narrator says they make him look like an adult, so he refuses to play with his friends because they're too childish. Eventually, they convince him that being a kid is more fun, so he plays with them. This episode is really funny. I like how his friends react.

I really enjoy how the whole show is shot in first person, from the perspective of the narrator. This makes the viewer feel very involved in Pocoyo's world. The show is very repetitive, which is perfect for its target audience. I really like how the characters move. They move their limbs as if they are actually made of clay. They stretch and move in impossible ways and it's very cute and hilarious.

Each episode has a good moral such as sharing, being kind, cleaning up after yourself and not taking other people's things without permission. The music also fits the show quite well. It sounds fun and almost as if it is being played by a child. I really like Pocoyo's voice. It really fits his character, even though he doesn't speak much. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 2 through 7.

Reviewed by Rohan F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I like this DVD because it has loveable characters and adorable animation. I also love the storyline because it teaches moral lessons. However, I don't like that it gets repetitive at times.

The storyline mainly revolves around three characters - Pocoyo, Pato and Ellie. They learn about morals while doing fun stuff such as dancing and playing detective. They treat each day like it's a special day.

The animation in this is adorable. It reminds me of the game "Animal Crossing". It also reminds me of some sort for anime because of his it is styled. The background of each episode is blank which gives the animators lots of creative freedom. It's cool to do this because you can then do anything with the background. For example, there is a galaxy for an alien and a city for little creatures.

My favorite character is Ellie. She is sassy, kind and loveable. I love that she is always dancing. I also love how she jokes around with the group. She hilarious and I love that.

There are different themes in each episode. For example, in one episode they are talking about how to be considerate and in another they are learning how to be fair with each other. These are all important life lessons that kids should learn, especially at an early age.

I rate this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 3 to 5. This is now available on DVD today so, check it out.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-6
Suggested Retail Price: $ 11.67
Media: CDROM
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


BOXCARE CHILDREN, THE: SURPRISE ISLAND

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BOXCARE CHILDREN, THE: SURPRISE ISLAND       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: FEATURE, AGES 6-14
Topic - Family
Description - One of the most-read children's book series of all time comes alive on the big screen in the Boxcar Children - Surprise Island based on the second book from the series by Gertrude Chandler, featuring the voice talents of Martin Sheen, J.K. Simmons, Griffin Cluck, Joey King, Dane DeHaan and more! The Alden children have a home with their grandfather now - but their adventures are just beginning! The first surprise comes when they learn they'll be spending the summer on their private island. A kind stranger who lives there is always happy to help the children out, but does this new friend have a secret?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The film, The Boxcar Children: Surprise Island is based on the second book in the series by Gertrude Chandler. In this series and film, the children now have a home with their grandfather (Martin Sheen).

The first surprise comes when the children learn that they'll be spending the summer on a private island belonging to their grandfather. Once on the island they meet Joe, an overseer of the island. During their visit, they turn an old barn into their home base and explore throughout the island. The children encounter many surprises as they cope with living on their own (as they always have), survive a perilous event and have many other adventures. Near the end of the film, a final secret "surprise" involving Joe is revealed.

The success of the book series is a definite draw and the "Surprise" feature will definitely entice young people towards the film. In many ways, the film comes across as very sophisticated and smart. It does not "dumb down" to the viewer. It is equally enticing for adults for those reasons. It is also very scenic and takes the viewer away as they envision themselves on the island with these characters. One drawback is that the plot is slow in developing, which could be a problem for some viewers. The CGI visuals are amazing and the sound quality is exceptional, especially the song that plays during the closing credits.

I recommend this film for ages 6 to 14 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Fathom Events will be offering a special after school screening in 700+ theaters nationwide on May 8, 2018 so, be sure to look for one near you.

Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Summer is just around the corner, and there's no better way to start it than by watching this alluring animated film. I could not stop smiling the entire time, because I felt as if I was at the beach, enjoying my summer vacation. With humorous jokes, unexpected challenges and adorable animals, you will become captivated for the full hour and a half. If you are trying to figure out your fun plans for summer vacation, all you need to do is watch this film.

The Alden children have just begun their summer vacation and are truly ecstatic. After running home joyfully to see their grandfather, the kids are presented with exciting news - they are going to spend summer break on their grandfather's secret island. Little do they know, their summer will be filled with marvelous adventures, since they have to do everything on their own. But, the kids end up meeting a boy living on the island named Joe, who has a hidden secret. Join Benny, Henry, Jessie and Violet (four orphaned brothers and sisters) as they have the vacation of a lifetime.

Benny, played by Carter Sand, is such an optimistic, inquisitive young boy. He always wants to help his family, such as asking to drive his grandfather's boat. Jessie, played by Joey King, is a responsible girl with a big heart. She looks out for Benny and gives him his teddy bear when he needs it. I admire her compassion, because she exemplifies the perfect sister. John Alden, played by Dane DeHaan, is humble and thoughtful. He plants an entire garden for the kids to admire. I cannot wait to have my own garden when I am older.

The animation is impeccable. For a few moments during the film, I felt as if I had time traveled from the movie theater to the beach. I could not help but envision myself next to waves, listening to the beautiful sounds of nature. My favorite part is when all of the kids make their own first dinner. Once they sit down at the table, they begin feeding their dog some bread. This is hilarious, because it reminds me of how I always feed my dogs extra food. Dogs are adorable, and, no matter how much food you give them, they will always beg for more.

The message of this film is that when you work as a team, anything is possible. No matter what challenges there are in this world, you can transcend them. Life is short, so we need to make the best of it. Next time you feel that the world is not on your side, just remember that everything happens for a reason. These kids teach us to enjoy summer vacation and to never give up. If they can do this, so can we.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 6 to 12. It is the perfect family-friendly film, because you will see how important family truly is to the Alden children. This film will be offered as an after school by Fathom Events for one day only, on May 8th, 2018. So, go check it out. If you are ever stuck on an island, don't worry. This film will show you how to make an island your next home.

By Samantha M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Surprises, mysteries and new things to explore sounds like a lot of fun for the Boxcar Children so I suggest joining them on this new adventure to a mysterious island. I really enjoyed the funny characters, amazing animation and unique story line - all of which bring this film and its story to life.

One thing that is mind blowing about this film is the animation. While I watched it, I noticed all the tiny details and how lifelike the characters look. I believed multiple times that I was actually exploring the island with them and felt like I was part of the action. The animation is that good. There is lots of eye candy to look at with great depth so it almost seems to be in 3D even though it isn't. This makes the film very enjoyable and it widens the age rage so older kids would enjoy it as well as younger ones.

Carter Sand as Benny is just adorable. He is very quirky and reminds me of my younger friends. I also like him because he is good hearted and loves his siblings as much as the whole wide world. That is a trait that I think we all should share. J. K. Simmons as Dr. Moore is superb. I did a Farmers commercial once with Mr. Simmons and found him as charming off screen as on. He was an absolute pleasure to work with.

Joey King as Jessie is a smart, lovely young lady. I have interviewed her many times and she is just adorable and personable. The only difference is that last time I saw her she was wearing reindeer ears and in this film she is the older sibling who knows how to cook. I like seeing her cook delicious foods from scratch such as clam chowder, cooked peas and carrots, apple pie and other foods. It made me hungry for dinner.

Martin Sheen as James Alden plays a gracious and kind character. Everyone would love a grandfather like him because he is so kind to others, especially his grandchildren. He is willing to do anything to make them happy and even takes them to a special island for the summer. That is what I call great grand parenting.

One thing that I don't like about this film is that the story is sometimes way too slow. Also, they have a mystery that they discover that goes unsolved. It is weird that the story didn't pursue that. It showed up and then they just dropped it. Other than that, the film is adorable and has a lot heart for families.

I recommend this film for ages 5 to 12 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. This will play in more than 700 theaters as an after school screening on May 8, thanks to Fathom Event. So, go check it out!

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 6-14
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


MICE WAR, THE

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
MICE WAR, THE
DAVID CHESKY
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - This dazzling animated musical tells the story of Albert, a young and peaceful mouse suddenly caught in the middle of a war between the Blue Mice of the North and the Red Mice of the South. The reason for war? Blue Mice eat pink cheese, Red Mice eat yellow cheese!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The concept of mice and cheese of different colors and who likes what is entertaining and makes a social statement as well. The animation is excellent. It is very clear and colorful. The movement of the mice in the various musical numbers is charming and the orchestral music is outstanding. The story is pretty fundamental. It reminds the viewer that often when things are going well there will be devilish actions that cause turmoil. In the story, the blue mice community is doing well. Everyone is working and earning money. Then, General Kan decides that going to war will make more money for them. There is no real reason for a war between the Blue Mice and the Red Mice and General Kan cannot really provide a reason to go to war. He is challenged by one young mouse. The results give us a possible answer to why we eat yellow cheese. The story flows very well. Just as in real life, there is sometimes one person who is not content and causes problems. The vocabulary and sequence of events are suitable for target age. We see a very good example of how to resolve a situation when there are differences. I highly recommend it and give it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18. Adults will enjoy it also. It is available now on DVD and digital. Reviewed by Juanita L. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult reviewers.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This astounding, animated film had me smiling the entire time. With comical jokes, catchy tunes and an exquisite plot, you feel allured from beginning to end. Not only am I still pondering about how intriguing this film is, but I am also considering getting a pet mouse. There is a plethora of adorable mice and are sure to steal your heart.

Set in a war between the Blue Mice of the North and the Red Mice of the South, an adolescent mouse named Albert becomes entangled in a constrictive situation, because he is coerced into the military. Such aforementioned war is due to contrasting opinions on the color of cheese that should be eaten. The Blue Mice strictly consume pink cheese, while the Red Mice believe yellow cheese is best. Therefore, the Blue Mice initiate a compelling war, in order to prevent the Red Mice from instilling yellow cheese among the mice of the North. Find out how Albert attempts to encourage the cessation of a grandiose war.

Albert (Sarah Jane McMahon) is a strong-willed mouse who perseveres to the fullest extent in order to end the war for his community's benefit. I admire Albert for his willingness to stand up against the general, voiced by Gregory Jbara. The General is quite controlling over the mice, even though the King is supposed to possess the power. The King (Barrett Leddy) enjoys how the general consistently suggests newfound ideas, and therefore is easily persuaded. All of the characters juxtapose each other consummately.

Music plays a paramount role in the interactions between the characters and the events they encounter. This music is not what you hear on your everyday radio. It is orchestrated. I could not help but sing along and the songs remained in my head the next morning.

My favorite part is when the mice find out they are heading to war. The mice break out into song and dance, which is hilarious. I wish I was as talented as these mice. The message of this film is about not letting others easily persuade you. Everyone is unique in their own way, which makes society beautiful. This beauty can preserved by holding into your own opinions and ideas. Just because someone else wants to change your mind, does not mean you should. Follow your heart, and everything else will fall into place.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 8 to 18, and adults will certainly love it too. This film is available now on DVD and Digital, so I encourage you to watch it with your friends and family. But, before you do, you might want to get some cheese.

Reviewed by Samantha M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
Runtime: 78 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 10
Media: VIDEO


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MIRACLE SEASON, THE       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
0
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8 - 18
Topic - Family
Description - After the tragic death of star volleyball player Caroline "Line" Found, a team of dispirited high school girls must band together under the guidance of their tough-love coach in hopes of winning the state championship.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Miracle Season is an inspiring account of a true story. The acting and narration respectfully accommodate the actual people involved. This is sure to be a worthwhile watch for any sports movie fan.

The story follows talented volleyball team, The Women of Troy, as they seek to win the championship. However, a tragic accident results in the death of team leader Caroline Found (Danika Yarosh). As a result, the team disbands in mourning, with coach Kathy (Helen Hunt) trying to lighten and reunite its hopeless members. Caroline's best friend Kelly (Erin Moriarty) chooses to become team leader and respect Caroline by espousing the championship. This results in a grueling training season where all team members must put aside their grief and work together to compete. With extreme stakes at hand, the team must win in order to fully respect Caroline's legacy and rectify their losses.

Helen Hunt, as Kathy, incredibly presents her tough-love attitude towards her team and their determination to win the championship. She performs wonderfully in depicting Kathy's attempt to imbue the team with a purpose in the most hopeless of circumstances. Erin Moriarty, as Kelly, excellently portrays her growth from novice volleyball player to motivating leader. Danika Yarosh, as Caroline, exceptionally characterizes her teenage friendship with Kelly, including some recklessness at times. This allows her accident to have an emotional weight to it. William Hurt, as Ernie, is my favorite character due to his character arc through his grief of his daughter's death, as he slowly pushes people closest to him away. His friendship with Kathy allows for a humanizing and emotionally charged redemption from his self-pity.

Sean McNamara directs the movie with a scenic chronological representation of the events that happened in real life. My favorite scene is one where Kelly and Ernie talk about their regrets, resulting in Ernie asking Kelly to stop being so harsh on herself. I love how it portrays a relatable aspect of life. The flaw with the movie comes in the first act, when it feels like another clich� teen drama. Fortunately, it improves once the more humanizing aspects of the story come into play. However, there is an overuse of mainstream music during much of the movie, which results in a few of the most emotional scenes being completely nullified.

The message of this movie is to always remain as a source of hope for others. Despite the extreme pressure the team faces, Kelly always finds a way to assure her teammates. I give this film 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18. The movie releases in theaters on April 6, 2018, so check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

The Miracle Season is a sports film based on a real life incident from 2011 when the captain of West High Schools volleyball team tragically died in a car accident. I found this film interesting because it remembers a teen, not an adult.

The storyline follows Kelly, who recently lost her best friend Caroline in a car accident. Now she has to lead the team. They have to fight through their loss and still play the game. They lose their first two games, but win the next fifteen games and are driven to win the state championship game in Caroline's memory.

Kelly is portrayed by Erin Moriarty who has appeared in the films Captain Fantastic and The Kings of Summer. Her coach Kathy Bresnahan is played by Helen Hunt, an Oscar-award nominee and winner, who has starred in the films Cast Away with and As Good As It Gets. These veteran actors bring the movie up as a whole.

An interesting thing about this film is that, even though it is a low budget film, it looks like a higher budget film. Also, it's based on a true story and is true to the original story including having videos of the actual games in the credits. Last, I found it interesting that the cast is mostly female, when sports movies usually feature all male teams.

I give this film 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18. It opens April 6, 2018 so look for it.

Reviewed by Abraham F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

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


CHEAT CODE KIDS

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
CHEAT CODE KIDS
JUDAH RAY
Series: SCREENPLAY, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - Bug wants nothing more, than to earn the respect of his big brother, Tobi, and his friends. Eager to prove that he can hang with the big kids, Bug uses a cheat code, for their favorite video game, that he found online. Instead of instantly making him a master of the game, however, it transports him, and his brother, to an elaborate, virtual world, where they meet new friends, and battle strange, and powerful adversaries. Now, they must learn to believe in themselves, trust in each other, and ultimately win as a team, in order to beat the game and return home.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This screenplay has great entertainment value and I can picture it on the big screen. It is a modern day story. The characters are likable and well developed. It tells an appealing story and, although there have been other stories or movies where the characters explore the virtual reality gaming world, this story stands out enough with its differences. It flows well, has an easy to follow story line and will entertain children. There is a subtle message about teamwork and getting along with others, especially younger siblings.

The story line flows well from beginning to ending and is appropriate for the target age. The characters are a strong point and I found them quite entertaining. Their dialogue is believable and kids will relate to the story. There is conflict between the younger and older brothers and I like that there is a resolution where they learned to work together. The only weakness was the ages of the two brothers. To make it more realistic, the younger brother should be a couple years older or the older brother a couple years younger. Five years is a big difference in age, especially in the beginning with the school situation. Realistically I think the ages being closer would make more since the 7-year-old seems a little older in his behavior and the older brother could be 12 but seems more like 10 years old. I can picture kids in this age range speaking the way they do in the script, so the dialogue is very believable. I believe that it has potential and that the scenes in the Game World are particularly entertaining and would be fun to watch on a big screen. This is well written with very few grammar, punctuation or spelling mistakes. It flows well from beginning to ending and the characters are all developed. It meets or exceeds the KIDS FIRST! criteria, is appealing and engaging. I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Some adults may enjoy it, especially if they like gaming. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Screenplay


HER MOVE NEXT

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
HER MOVE NEXT
IAN PHILLIPS
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 7-18
Topic - Family
Description - The top all-girls scholastic Chess Team in the USA is profiled in this short documentary by Ian Phillips.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I highly recommend it for inclusion in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival. This short film is an entertaining documentary about the power of chess and how it brings people together. The storyline follows an all girls' chess team from Chelsea Prep School, New York and their journey to become national champions. With the help of their coach and the commitment of their parents, the chess team begins on a path to victory at the national chess championship in Chicago, IL. Along the way, friendships are formed and an obsession with chess begins. The film is well structured. It spends the first half familiarizing us with the team members so, when their adventure begins, we are invested in what happens to them. The audio and camerawork are very well done. During tournament scenes, you feel as if you are right there playing the game with them and it heightens the suspense of those scenes. This is an entertaining film for anyone who has ever been fascinated by chess or who has been on a team of any kind. I think many kids will identify with the film's universal messages of friendship and camaraderie and a fascination with chess may even stem from watching this. I recommend it to ages 7 to 18 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 17 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


OCEAN STORY- A COCONUT'S JOURNEY

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
OCEAN STORY- A COCONUT'S JOURNEY
ANDREAS ABSTREITER
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 6-18
Topic - Family
Description - A coconut is slowly reaching the shore of Medhufushi - an island located in the east of the Maldivian Meemu Atoll. This film is about all the oceanic wonders it has seen traveling by under its shell during its long journey over the open ocean and through the atoll. From Germany, in English.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I wasn't sure about this at first, because I thought maybe it was truly about a coconut and in a way, it is. But, it is more than that! It's about the beautiful ocean and all the amazing creatures that live there. If you love ocean creatures, then you will enjoy watching this film. If you are expecting to learn a lot about coconuts, you will be disappointed. However, there is something to learn from the coconut's journey. The creatures of the ocean are exceptionally appealing, particularly all the turtles, rays and sharks. It has amazing ocean scenes and children will enjoy seeing all the sea creatures. The film flows well and has a good ending which relates back to a beginning. I rate this short documentary 4 out of 5 stars. It is entertaining and educational. I give it 4 out of 5 stars and highly recommend it for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival partners, especially any looking for short films about marine life and the environment. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 15 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 6-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


MOGU AND PEROL

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
MOGU AND PEROL
YURIKO OKADA
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - A story about two friends living on Yummy Island, where delicious food can be found everywhere! Whenever Mogu is cooking, Perol just pops up and eats the yummy meal. One day Perol finds a very tasty looking Brrrr-berry that Mogu was about to pick. Perol doesn't wait for a second to taste the berry which brings about an unexpected quarrel between the two. Dialogue in Japanese with English sub-titles.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This beautifully stop motion animated short film is fun, has cute characters and is very suitable for young children. The music fits well with the simple, slice of life feeling. The subtitles are easy to read. This is the story of two friends living on an island, surrounded by food. The friends bond over food, until one believes he was tricked into eating sour berries by the other friend. During this time one friend says, "Two-faced liar and loser." (This is the only concern that I have about the film.) The friends eventually make up with the help of some yummy food. The film's director, Tsuneo Goda, has made many notable works such as Komaneko, The Curious Kitty &Friends and By Your Side. I love his artistic style! I believe a child would love the fun characters and storyline. The story flows well and is very understandable. My favorite scene is when the two friends are picking berries together. The outdoor set is gorgeous. It's very simple and cute. You should know that the dialogue is in Japanese with English sub titles. I recommend this for ages 5 to 12 (due to the sub-titles) and give it 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Rachael V. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 8 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


LITTLE WARRIORS

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
LITTLE WARRIORS
SAM MIRPOORIAN
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-18
Topic - Family
Description - Indiana is not known for reckoning with the scientific reality of climate change. Quite the opposite, in fact. The state does not have a climate action plan, nor does any individual city. In early 2016, a group of young people in central Indiana, from ages 9-20, began the process of crafting a Climate Resilience and Recovery Resolution. With the help of elected and appointed officials, this intergenerational initiative resulted in Indianapolis becoming the largest city in the country to pass a youth-led resolution addressing climate concerns, and promising carbon neutrality and the creation of a Climate Action Plan for the city.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Little Warriors is a powerful documentary that is a hopeful look at groups of kids who are trying to make climate change a thing of the past, rather than a somber look at how much global warming has grown as an issue. The film follows a Jim, who teaches kids about the threat of climate change and the science behind it. He vows to empower these kids to spark beneficial change for the earth by muting the power of climate change. The film follows groups of kids who have been taught by Jim and how they end up making a difference in their community. I believe kids will be inspired by seeing their peers' hard work and how it pays off as something that they might never see the benefits of in their own lifetime. Its 20 minute runtime zooms by and I was a little sad when it was over. I like seeing all the different kids testifying on behalf of climate change. The editing is quite good. I give this film 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 5 to 18. I highly recommend it for inclusion in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival, especially for those looking for environmental films. Reviewed by Benjamin P. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic and KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 23 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


IMAGINE BARRY

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
IMAGINE BARRY
JORDAN HARFF
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - A young man is visited by the imaginary friend he never had as a child, who has arrived 20 years late for their "playdate".
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This film is very humorous. There are definitely some very corny parts, but it's all in a good spirit. I really like how silly the main character is, even though he is a 25-year-old. I love the personality of the little puppet guy and, I have to say that the puppet is my favorite part of this short film. I also think the song is really good. It sounds like something the Muppets would sing. There are some technical issues with the audio and the camera work. But, the acting is pretty solid, especially the main character. I enjoyed watching this and laughed a lot. I highly recommend it for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival. I think a child may would enjoy this because it has a lot of silly humor. I recommend it for ages 8 to 18 and give it 3.5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Leah R. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic and KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 19 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


CHA CHA CHA - FRENCH LEARNING SONGS

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
CHA CHA CHA - FRENCH LEARNING SONGS
WHISTLEFRITZ LLC
Series: AUDIO CD, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - Parlez-vous cha, cha, cha? From samba and merengue to rumba and reggae, this wildly fun collection of songs with Latin and Caribbean rhythms adds an exciting twist to learning French that makes learning French as easy as un, deux, trois.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is an upbeat and energetic learning tool for children ages 3 to 7. Join Fritzi the Mouse and friends as they teach us how to sing in French by using this amazing CD comprised of 15 fun songs! Get ready to feel the Island breeze through steel drums and rhythmic beats as you learn French versions of kid classics. You'll hear some old and some new tunes including Months of the Year, Numbers, Vowels, Days of the Week, Seasons, Bingo, Hide and Seek and On the Bridge of Avignon. The vocals are beautifully clear and performed by acclaimed singer Lynn Veronneau. The unique music, composed by Didier Prossaird, has an French Island influence that is undeniably catchy. Some of the songs are supplemented with children's vocals and chants to prompt participation and memorization by the listeners. The songs run between one and four minutes in length for a total of approximately 36 minutes of listening time. Included is an extensive vocabulary companion booklet with colorful illustrations of your favorite Whistlefritz friends! This CD has won awards from Dr. Toy, Parent's Choice Foundation and the National Parenting Publication. You can gain access to additional Whistlefritz media and educational tools via www.whistlefritz.com. I give this CD 5 out of 5 stars for its creative and unique sound. After listening to it, you'll surely be speaking French and humming these tunes throughout the day! I recommend this for teachers, parents or anyone with children who want to learn a second language in a friendly and fun way. Reviewed by Eli B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Whistlefritz: Cha Cha Cha is an upbeat album for the whole family that helps kids learn French in a new and fun way.

Each song on Whistlefritz: Cha Cha Cha teaches a different aspect of speaking the French language. Songs range from being about the seasons to the days of the week and even certain jobs.

This CD is great at teaching vocabulary. The songs are sufficiently repetitive in a way that will educate those new to French, but won't annoy those already familiar with the vocabulary being taught. Even if you don't wish to learn French, the songs are peppy and catchy. A lot of different instruments are used and every song has a different feel and vibe.

I recommend it for ages 3 to 18. As long as your child or you are ready to learn some French, you should enjoy this CD. I would recommend this as a segue even into beginning level adults learning French. I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars. It is a nice review of some things in French for me, as someone who already knows some, and both beginners and experienced speakers are certain to get something out of this CD.

Cha, Cha, Cha: French Learning Songs is a helpful, educational, kid-friendly collection of songs that encourage learning the language of French through the art of song. French is a beautiful language that is great to know. The fun songs on this track really add something special to the experience of learning.

I had an awesome time listening to these songs and following along with the booklet provided. The woman who sings has a lovely voice, which is complemented by the upbeat rhythms of the music. This CD is full of catchy tunes that are easy to learn and fun for kids to sing along to. The music is energetic, fun and an absolute blast. It is child friendly and, at the same time very educational. I have no doubt that kids who genuinely want to learn French will enjoy this immensely.

I give this CD 5 out of 5 and commend it for ages 2 to 8. I loved this CD and think that it is a unique and helpful way to assist young learners who want to broaden their horizons and learn a new language. It's available now wherever CDs are sold and online at Whistlefritz so, look for it.

Reviewed by Ella L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

I really enjoyed listening to this CD. It is entertaining music that uses catchy and recognizable songs to teach French! It makes fun background music for little kids and they can do anything they want while listening to the music. By hearing the music at young age, they will learn French by immersion. It's like singing to kids and learning English without thinking about, just the way we learn English. It comes with the English words to the songs as well, so you can read those while listening if you like. I have to admit that it was a bit difficult for me to understand everything, because I don't know French. But kids under the age of five will probably get the hang of it quicker and will be singing the tunes without knowing they are singing in French. If you're older, you may like it the CD because the tunes are catchy and fun to listen to. I recommend this for ages 2 to 5 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. It is available now wherever CDs are sold and online at Whistlefritz.

Reviewed by Rachel K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

Everyone get ready to move and grove to this terrific new CD! I adore the catchy beat of the music and how I found myself singing in French right away. Cha, Cha, Cha: French Learning Songs is musically creative and makes you want to dance and sing. Even if you don't know the French words, you soon will.

One thing that I really love about this is that it teaches you French in a wondrous way that kids, young and old will enjoy. Everyone likes music, so what better way to learn French than through song.

The songs are about the mouths of the year, different types of fruits, numbers and BINGO - the song that everyone loves. Since the songs are in French, the CD comes with a booklet that translates the lyrics into English, so you will understand every word. I enjoyed this factor because I now know how to say things like kiwi and October in French as well as English.

I recommend this for ages 4 to 13 and give it 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 40 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99
Media: AUDIO

Buy Here (from WHISTLEFRITZ LLC)


PANDAS       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WARNER BROS. PICTURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - An American biologist embarks on a life-changing journey to China to help scientists breed giant pandas and introduce the cubs into the wild.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The fun family IMAX film, Pandas is wonderfully entertaining and educational. It is a documentary about the journey following one particular panda living in captivity, to its release into the wild. The movie begins when Chen Chen is just a pup, living with other baby pandas in captivity. Based on the black bear research of Ben Kilham, this lucky panda is released and followed in the wild. The American researcher, Jacob Owens and the Chinese researcher, Bi Wen Li work together to help bring Chen Chen into her natural environment. Along the journey, she has some awkward moments and challenging times. I won't tell you what they are because it would give away a big part of the movie.

My favorite scene is the beginning when we see Chen Chen and the other pandas playing together. In many ways, they seem just like little kids happily playing. My other favorite scene is when Ben Kilham is playing a peek-a-boo game with a black bear behind a tree (say that 10 times fast). The music, by Mark Mothersbaugh, is really child-like, which adds to the fun playfulness that we see with the pandas. The narration by Kristen Bell is spot on with her happy tone and soothing voice throughout the film. The sweetness in her voice adds to the enjoyment of the movie.

My favorite character has to be the adorable Chen Chen and also the researchers. Chen Chen is always entertaining because she is so cute, loving, has a great personality and is very curious. I especially love the part when the researchers say they will always be there for her whether it is in ten or 20 years.

The message of this film is that, through research, working with others and a lot of patience, pandas and other endangered animals raised in captivity can be successfully released into the wild. The message also is that it is important to save species from extinction because "once they're gone, they're gone"

I recommend this film for ages 5 to 18 and give it 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Abigail Zoe L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

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


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SAYIN' IT SAM: COLORS
0
Series: APP, AGES 2-5
Topic - Education/Instructional
Description - This app is a game that uses speech recognition to activate animations. It is deigned for preschoolers and kids with autism and speech impairments to motivate them to play by voice. Say a color and see what happens - balloons pop, birds fly, dogs play fetch, trains go Choo Choo down the track and shapes spin.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - coming soon
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The game "Sayin' It Sam" is an amazing interactive game different from any other educational game out there. "Sayin' It Sam" is a game made for preschoolers and, in particular, those who have autism to motivate them to speak. There are different modes that have different colors that you have to name in order to get to the next set of colors. You can chose between popping balloons when you name each color, or naming the colors of different shapes.

The artwork for this game sets a warm tone and a kid friendly atmosphere. There isn't a pressuring timer, or a big bad boss level, just Sam encouraging you to name those colors, and use your voice. Unlike some games built around sound, this game has prompt responses to hearing voices, and a variation of responses to each color named correctly.

I give this game 5 out of 5 stars and recommend this game for ages 2 to 6. You can download "Sayin' It Sam" from the App Store. Reviewed by Raquel Y., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Sayin' It Sam: Colors is an educational app for young children and those with speech disabilities. This app is a good idea that could have been utilized better.

The app Is very simple which is a good thing because it's easy to navigate. When you open it, there's a menu. You select choose an item and then you guess the color of the item. The next screen has three items, each a different color. You say one of the colors out loud and it continues to another set of colors. When you get it right, Sam congratulates you.

I'm not sure if this is the app's fault, but it didn't understand anything I said. It might be because of my accent (I'm Irish), but I couldn't get past the first set of colors. The animation is good for such a simple app and Sam's movement is smooth and his mouth mostly matches the audio. The colors are a bit confusing, because brown looks like red and purple looks like pink.

I give this app 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 3 through 6.

Reviewed by Rohan F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Sayin' It Sam: Colors, is an app where you name the colors of shapes, balloons and other objects. When you click on a game to play, Sam says "Let's play!" After the objects appear he says, "Say a color." Then, you say a color and, if you said the name of the correct color, it does a special animation (different for each level) and the shape disappears. Sometimes it takes 4, 5 or even more tries to get the shape to vanish. This game is designed to give young kids who are still learning to talk and kids with language impairments a chance to practice speaking. The animation is quite good. For example, the character Sam, instead of being a random monster or talking animal is a realistic animated human. I like that.

I rate this app 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 6, because it teaches speech and yet it doesn't seem to recognize older voices. I think it's a great idea, but I wish it recognized what I said more easily. I have an Irish accent so that might have been the problem. Some kids might get frustrated having to repeat themselves so many times. The app also has a website (http://www.sayinitsam.com/) which shows live videos of the app being played, a link to their blog and more.

Reviewed by Damon F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-5
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: App


SPACESHIP THAT FELL IN MY BACKYARD, THE

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SPACESHIP THAT FELL IN MY BACKYARD, THE
RUTH AND EMILIA
Series: AUDIO CD FOR AGES 5-8
Topic - Family
Description - When a shiny spaceship lands in Emilia's backyard, she meets URR from planet Goopda who has traveled to Earth to promote universal peace. The two learn about working together and making the world a better place as they sing their way through the day's adventures. Produced by Enrico Lopez-Ya�ez, Asst. Director, Nashville Symphony; Jeff Silverman producer of Mattel's Barbie "The Look." Composer: Ruth Weber.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Spaceship That Fell In My Backyard is the newest release from mother-daughter team, Ruth and Emilia. Featuring strong engaging vocals and terrific production values this fun-filled musical odyssey will have everyone dancing in the streets... as long as there is no traffic and you've looked both ways four times! URR from the planet Goopda is here on a mission of universal peace (like we need it!) and our heroes share positive adventures of love, acceptance and care for planet Earth. A splendid time is guaranteed for all! This energized pop-rock music has some very fun arrangements and instrumentation. It is well produced. The vocals are well-performed and the musicianship is terrific. There are lots of positive messages about love, acceptance, friendship and caring - all very relate-able child oriented issues. The structure follows a theme about our heroes befriending an alien traveler and they share positive goals for the planet. On the plus side, the alien doesn't eat them! This CD is perfect for its intended audience and is created in a gentle loving way. There are safety tips, caring for the planet advice and words of wisdom about befriending people from foreign lands. It all proves that learning and fun can be one. The artists know their audience and intended age group well. I love the way it celebrates our individuality as people and cultures, our deep love and caring for the Earth and the joy and appreciation of our friends near and galactically far away. This CD, in association with their stage show presents a nice package that will get kids get excited about outer space, Earth stewardship and respect for other cultures. I highly recommend it and give it 4 out of 5 stars. My audience recommendation is ages 5 to 10, as well as parents. Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Adult juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This CD has lots of wonderful, catchy songs - all upbeat and inspirational. They tell the story of an alien crashing down in a little girl's backyard. They sing about friendship and having fun in life, brushing your teeth at night, saying no to drugs and not talking to strangers. I love how they make catchy songs about these good habits. The song helps you remember these habits.

The only concern I have about this CD is that some of the songs contain words in them that young listeners might not understand. Even though younger children might sing the words, it is always good to include words that young kids understand. Another issue I have is that some of the songs are sun really fast, making it hard to hear the words they are singing.

The CD is definitely informational and catchy and something that kids will definitely learn something from. I recommend it for ages 3 to 7 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. This CD comes out on March 23, 2018 so be sure to check it out!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

This CD tells a story through song and a blend of a variety of music types. Although it teaches positive lessons, this CD is a promising concept met by a somewhat disappointing result.

The storyline is about a young girl named Emilia whose backyard is the landing site for an alien ship from the planet Goopda. The spaceship is carrying an alien named URR. Emilia and URR learn about each others' lives and find they have more in common than they thought.

The CD struggles at keeping an overarching idea to justify an entire CD. It starts off with the thread about Emilia and her otherworldly visitors and then descends into a group of songs about world peace and bubble baths. It doesn't reclaim its original thread until much later and abruptly ends just when it starts to get interesting.

I recommend it for ages 3 to 7 and give it 2 out of 5 stars. Younger kids will enjoy the happy vibe and simple rhymes.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Reviewer, age 12
Runtime: 31 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-8
Suggested Retail Price: $ 10.99
Media: AUDIO


GARFIELD: NINE LIVES
PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 5-18
Topic - Family
Description - Kids and parents can join Garfield, Jon, and Odie for two hilarious adventures in this new DVD. The two episodes on this DVD include: His Nine Lives - Do cats really have nine lives? Garfield explores his nine lives, from Cave Cat all the way through Space Cat. At the end of his nine tales, Garfield points out to his creator that the circumstances of his last life were stacked unfairly against him and Odie. His creator agrees and gives Garfield back not just one life, but nine more! Garfield in the Rough - Jon announces that he, Garfield and Odie are going on vacation! Garfield gets excited, but that enthusiasm quickly wanes when he discovers Jon planned a camping trip - what a choice! Life in the wild gets dangerous when an escaped panther enters their campground. Will the rangers be able to capture the panther before it finds the trio?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This DVD has two episodes about cats and their nine lives. The first episode is interesting but confusing. I like seeing Garfield, Jon and Odie, but got confused and lost interest towards the middle when it shows other cat short stories and their lives. It loses some of its appeal when other cats are featured instead of Garfield. As a big Garfield fan, I expected more of Garfield. Also, it is unclear whether Garfield is one of the other cats in some of those lives. It that sounds unclear, it's because I was confused. It ends well and has a happy ending, which I like. The second episode is much better, from beginning to end. It flows well and has no confusing issues. It reminds me why I love Garfield so much. This is more of what I expected. I rate this DVD 4 of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 through 18. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Reviewer
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 48 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99
Media: DVD
      Buy Here (Amazon.com)


BACKYARD WILDERNESS

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
BACKYARD WILDERNESS       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
IMAX FILMS
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 8 TO 18
Topic - Family
Description - Backyard Wilderness will surprise and entertain viewers with the unexpected wonders of nature that are right under our noses - in our own backyards. Spanning a seasonal year around a suburban home, the film displays a stunning array of unique wildlife images and behavior - all captured by cameras mounted inside dens and nests, and moving along the forest floor and pond bottom, to reveal its inhabitants in rare and breathtaking intimacy. We follow Katie, a young girl, and her modern family living next to the woods who are blind to the real-life spectacle around them, absorbed by an array of electronic devices in their busy lives. Katie gradually discovers the intricate secrets that nature has hidden so close to her front door and we experience the joy she finds in her interactions with this new world. The film reminds us that Wi-Fi is not the only connection that matters and that sometimes in ordinary places, you can uncover extraordinary things that can transform you forever - you just need to step outside.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Backyard Wilderness is a spellbinding documentary capturing magical moments in nature that we rarely get to see on camera or in our day-to-day lives and puts them on a large and intense scale.

This 3D IMAX film follows Katie, a young girl who lives in a house surrounded by a bustling woodland of animals and plants. Katie and her family are oblivious to the fascinating occurrences in the world around them because they are consumed by the technology at their fingertips. At school, she is assigned a report on animals. She chooses the spotted salamander whose whole life cycle happens right outside her house and her adventure begins.

The cinematography in Backyard Wilderness brilliantly highlights the beauty and vastness of the forests which are the main setting and leaves you wondering how they were able to get such unique moments on film. The film brings exciting moments to the screen such as when a pack of coyotes chase some deer or when you witness the dangerous journey of spotted salamanders to their breeding ground.

My favorite scene is when a group of newly hatched baby wood ducklings exit their nest for the first time and try to fly. You will laugh and cheer at the same time and the filmmakers use a perfect song to score this fun and adorable scene.

The lesson of the film is that there is an active and energetic world around us that is always worth exploring. As a society, we have become so concerned with social media that we forget to notice what is happening right in our backyards. Katie's life changes when she lets go of her electronics and begins to explore the landscape beside her home.

I recommend this film for ages 5 to 12. You will learn a lot from this film about how certain species interact with one another and thrive. It is very educational and has a valuable message. Adults and older kids will still enjoy the breathtaking visuals. I give it 4 out of 5 stars. If you like nature documentaries and the larger-than-life world of IMAX with some cool 3D effects, I highly recommend it. Backyard Wilderness is playing around the country in select IMAX theaters now.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-15
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU: CHRISTMAS TO THE MOON AND BACK

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU: CHRISTMAS TO THE MOON AND BACK
SLR PRODUCTIONS
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 2-7
Topic - Family
Description - On a snow-covered Christmas Eve, Little Nutbrown Hare and his friends stumble across a little Brown Bear who is lost. Determined to return their young friend back to his mother in time for Christmas, the friends venture bravely into the unknown woods. Through this epic journey we are reminded that the greatest gift of Christmas is being with the ones you love.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I thoroughly enjoyed this short film and highly recommend it for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival . This is a heartwarming tale about Little Brown Hare who wanders outside one night when he can't sleep and discovers a rare, all white fawn dancing in the snow. He knows all white fawns are rare and when he talks to her she runs away. Through lots of escapades Little Brown Hare finally is able to convince his forest friends the fawn is real and able to befriend the white fawn. The characters are interesting and charming. A field mouse and a squirrel friends are all friends with Little Brown Hare and they interact with each other in the most loving way. I felt sorry for Little Brown Hare when no one believes that he had seen the white fawn. Eventually the truth comes out and they finally see her and believe Little Brown Hare. The morale of this story is about love. The love between Little Brown Hare and his dad, the love of friends and possibility of the love of strangers. The negative behaviors shown are about doubt, but that disappears over time. I particularly enjoyed seeing the field mouse trying to protect Little Brown Hare by making a white fawn out of snow. He tries to protect his friend's honor in doing so. The educational and social elements that make this film valuable emphasize the various ways that you can show someone how you love them. Adults often tell children that they love them and they can hear it in this story in a way they can relate to. The production values are outstanding, from the animation to the voice over talent to the background music. The images look like watercolors brought to life. I love them! I recommend this for ages 2 to 7 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. It uses vocabulary and ideas which little children can understand and enjoy. Questioning, probing and problem-solving are developed in a manner suitable for the target age. It is very enjoyable and charming. If you have a festival for preschool and early elementary kids, this will fit right in. Reviewed by Tina B. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Jurors.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 26 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-7
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


DRAWING, A

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
DRAWING, A
BRAD CONDIE
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 6-18
Topic - Family
Description - A young boy misses the chance to say goodbye to his dying Mother. Through his deep desire to reconnect to her and the beneficence of the universe he is allowed to see her again. A drawing done by the boy is his final gift to her.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Recommended. This beautifully constructed animation short is made from hand-drawn animation, taking pencil drawn images and turning them into beautiful animation in the tradition of the early 1900's animation. I love that. It truly is almost a lost art that this film follows. In this unique short, we see a child dealing with the loss of his mother. Although there is no dialogue and the images are in black and white, it holds your attention the entire time. The story moves seamlessly, making it easy for viewers to create their own interpretation of the story. In its five plus minutes, the story delivers all the nuances of a good film. The story starts out somewhat melancholy, as we see the boy at his mother's funeral. We all know that losing a beloved parent isn't an easy subject for anyone. Yet, the story perks up when the bird comes to the boy, turning him into a bird himself so that he might have one last visit with his mother. We rejoice as he learns to use his wings. The expressions on the young boy's face are so heartfelt. You feel the pain of his loss and the ecstasy of being with his mother one last time. The original score by Mina Keohane is so appropriate - sad and melancholy at times, joyful at others. The director/writer/producer, Brad Condie has such delicate control of his craft. His artistry alone makes this worth viewing. For anyone who has ever lost a parent or dear friend, this brings a spirit of joyfulness in its simplicity and love. I high recommend this for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival for ages 6 to 18 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Raquel Y and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic and KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 5.5 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 6-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


SKY UNDERWATER, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
SKY UNDERWATER, THE
ANITA JONSTERHAUG VEDA
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 8-15
Topic - Family
Description - It's 2050. Six years old Mia lives in the city of Bergen, under a glass dome, 537 meters under the sea level. Every night, the Big Light wakes her up, clean and beautiful, unlike the rest of the world underwater, which is full of trash. Mia wants to travel out of the dome to see the Big Light, but the Adults hold her back and tell her everything is dangerous out there, because it's full of sharks. Mia escapes anyway, and finds out that neither the sharks nor the world outside the dome are as dangerous as the fearful Adults want her to believe. Gathering the trash around her with the help of her friends, she will fly up to the surface to see the Moon for the first time. From Norway with English dialogue.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I found this short animated film from Norwegian filmmakers Maria Galliani Dyrvik and Anita Jonsterhaug appealing because it is so different and the protagonist, Mia so likable. She needs to experience things for herself rather than believe what others tell her to be true. Mia is curious and adventurous, like many children. I believe children watching this will enjoy her character and relate to her. The animation is quite wonderfully done. It is simple and not full range animation. I also enjoyed the voiceover talent for Mia. It is youthful, clear and emotional. The film is well constructed and easy to watch but, the message is a bit unclear. I found myself wanting to know the backstory of why Mia and the others were living under the sea with trash all around them. In some ways, the ending is more of a beginning. I wanted to see where it would evolve to after she comes to the surface. This would fit into a film festival looking for films that address the environment, marine life, ecology and similar. I give it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 15. Reviewed by Denise B. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! jurors.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 10 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-15
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


FRENCH FOR KIDS: L'ANNIVERSAIRE DE FRITZI

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
FRENCH FOR KIDS: L'ANNIVERSAIRE DE FRITZI       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WHISTLEFRITZ LLC
Series: DVD, AGES 2-5
Topic - Family
Description - The latest release in Whistlefritz's award-winning French for Kids series! Aimez-vous les f�tes d anniversaire ? (Do you like birthday parties?) Join the language-learning celebration as Marie and the Whistlefritz kids plan the perfect party for their playful animated friend, Fritzi the mouse. Balloons, cake, presents, and special guests add an exciting twist to learning French in this lively, interactive French immersion program. At a Whistlefritz party, even cleaning up is fun! Each step in the party-planning process is captured through entertaining animated segments, live-action footage and upbeat interactive songs that teach words and phrases for toys, colors, parts of the room, household objects, and everyday activities. The video includes an easy-to-use translation guide for parents and teachers (also available for free download from the company's website), as well as French and English subtitle options. Designed for ages 2-7, L'anniversaire de Fritzi is fun for all ages! What are you waiting for? Let's get this language-learning party started!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - L'anniversaire de Fritzi (Fritzi's Birthday) is a really fun interactive French immersion program. In this DVD, Marie, an adult narrator and the Whistlefritz kids plan a party for Fritzi's fifth birthday. Fritzi is an animated French mouse and with lots of cute little animal friends. They make a cake, blow up balloons and invite special guests. It's a colorful mix of verbal and visual learning. It's about 30 minutes in length and is full of laughter and learning. Immersion learning is all about learning a language by speaking only that language without any English translation. It is based on how we learn our first language and makes learning a new one easy and fun. The cast is very diverse and there is lots of laughing and silly behavior woven into the educational lessons. This DVD has a lot of fun songs and encourages play and interaction with the characters and the Whistlefritz kids. The menu offers the options to play songs only and offers an in-depth explanation of immersion learning. Included is also a parent/teacher translation guide. This sing-along, dance-along fun fest is perfect for children ages 2 to 5. I give this title 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Eli B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This educational and adorable language-immersion learning DVD by Whistlefritz is a great way to help young children learn French. The little characters' expressive faces are funny and engaging to watch.

A sweet mouse named Fritzi is turning five years old and his classmates are throwing a party for him. Along the way, kids experience songs and activities that teach them French words for all the fun things that accompany birthday parties such as cake, balloons, presents, toys and much more.

I love this film because I feel it is a great way for little children to learn French in a fun, entertaining way. The bright colors lock in your attention and the goofy characters are easy for small children to connect with. My favorite thing about this DVD is how, every once in a while, Fritzi's friends check on him while he is sleeping in his tiny house. It is so funny when he makes his cute snoring sounds.

The film also teaches children good behavior like being friendly and warm to each other. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 6. It is available now on DVD so check it out.

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

I enjoyed the French language DVD, L'Anniversaire de Fritzi. It is helpful for kids. Knowing another language can be very helpful. Whether you are trying to communicate with someone who recently moved to your school who speaks a different language or vacationing in a place where they speaks another language, it's good to know the basics. The best time to learn another language is when you are little. Although we can all benefit from learning a new language even if we are older and may need a bit more time to learn it. This DVD hits the nail on the head. It caters to a younger audience and teaches children at their level. It isn't just learning words though. It teaches through games and songs! It's an immersion technique. I have to admit that I had a difficult time understanding what they were saying at some times, having no past knowledge of French. Still, I really enjoyed watching this DVD and participating as much as I could. It was fun to see people doing things and hearing about it in French. I recommend L'Anniversaire de Fritzi for ages 2 to 5 and rate it 4 out of 5 stars. It is available on DVD in the obvious places so look for it. Reviewed by Rachel K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 30 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-5
Suggested Retail Price: $ 19.99
Media: DVD
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WRINKLE IN TIME (2018)

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
WRINKLE IN TIME (2018)       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 6-18
Topic - Family
Description - Meg Murry and her little brother, Charles Wallace, have been without their scientist father, Mr. Murry, for five years, ever since he discovered a new planet and used the concept known as a tesseract to travel there. Joined by Meg's classmate Calvin O'Keefe and guided by the three mysterious astral travelers known as Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who and Mrs. Which, the children brave a dangerous journey to a planet that possesses all of the evil in the universe.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I enjoyed this, but had some disappointment as well. I wanted to like it more. Maybe it was all the hype. It seems a bit like a comic version of the story, especially the primordial celestial beings (Mrs. Which, Mrs. Whatsit and Mrs. Who). Maybe it was the sequined eyebrows on Oprah. At any rate, it didn't quite hit it out of the park. Don't get me wrong, I would take my grandson to see it. I am not sure if I would take another adult. Great special effects! Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A Wrinkle in Time is an enjoyable, yet somewhat flawed interpretation of the classic novel of the same name. The direction and special effects provide a world unlike any other. This is sure to be a watch for sci-fi fans.

The story follows Meg Murry (Storm Reid), a genial teen who is the daughter of famed scientist Alex Murry (Chris Pine). After her father disappears, she goes through a period of insecurity and despair. Four years later, a group of primordial celestial beings - Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey), Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon) and Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling) visit Earth to help Meg find her father. Meg's brother Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe) and friend Calvin (Levi Miller) also join the quest to find Alex. However, Meg is also brought in to help fight the "It", an entity of darkness that threatens to destroy people's happiness.

Storm Reid, as Meg, excellently presents her inner struggle to be happy and accept herself and this adds a unique element to the story. As the movie progresses, she slowly rises beyond her doubts to become better. Chris Pine, as Alex, delivers an ardent love for science in his character and, while much of his character is witnessed before he disappears, the rest of his scenes add a performance filled with remorse. Deric McCabe, as Charles Wallace, is my favorite character due to his charismatic performance - full of comic relief. Levi Miller, as Calvin, encompasses a respectful companion who seems to be rather enamored by Meg. Oprah Winfrey, as Mrs. Which, is a wise mentor for Meg who guides her throughout her journey. Reese Witherspoon, as Mrs. Whatsit, is the least wise of the three celestial beings, but she provides a kind companion. Mindy Kaling, as Mrs. Who, represents an encyclopedia of character teeming with knowledge.

Ava DuVernay incredibly directs the movie, as you feel as if you are a part of the world through her use of word building to convey a story. My favorite scene is the resolution to the main conflict, as it feels like an appropriate conclusion. My problem with the movie is that is unevenly paced, with the first half of the movie following generic clich�s, despite a great first 10 minutes. But the movie gets running as soon as the second half begins, going into uncharted territory unlike any other movie. I also feel that the scenes for Alex and some other plot points are limited, resulting in a few disjointed, convoluted narrative at times and that could throw off some audience members.

The message of the movie is about believing in yourself and accepting who you are. I give this film 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18. The movie releases in theaters on March 9, 2018, so check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

I liked, but did not love this latest Disney film and here's why. This film is an adaptation of the book, "A Wrinkle in Time" written by Madeleine L'Engle. It is visually stunning, but unfortunately falls short in the storytelling. The protagonists are Meg Murry (Storm Reid) and her little brother Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe). Their scientist father, Mr. Murry has been missing for four years. Meg has had a rough time at school ever since her father's disappearance. Her younger brother, Charles Wallace introduces Meg to three mysterious astral travelers. Meg is very skeptical of them at first, until she and Charles Wallace are informed by them that their father is not dead, but was taken by a dark force. Meg, Charles Wallace and her classmate Calvin (Levi Miller) go on an adventure with the three astral travelers, called the Misses. Will Meg and Charles Wallace find their dad? Well you must see the movie to find out the answer.

I like the visuals, the cast and the message of this film. The visuals are very stunning. The scene where Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon) becomes a leaf and gives the kids a ride looks very spectacular. It almost looks like this could be possible in real life. I also like the transitions of the worlds changing as a result of the characters' actions. The visual effects bring this world to life. Another thing I like is the cast. Oprah's, Reese Witherspoon's and Mindy Kaling's performances as the Misses are exceptional. They show different personalities which make them unique. Mrs. Whatsit is more negative, unlike Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling), who is wise and uses quotes from famous people to relay her messages. Mrs. Whatsit is more direct and rude, unlike Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey) who guides Meg when she is scared or unsure. Lastly, the messages in this movie are very important. They are about embracing your uniqueness, recognizing the importance of love and being brave enough to discover your inner warrior.

One thing I do not like is the pace. In the first act, the pace is slow and that is fine, since it builds up the exposition. However, the final act of the movie feels very rushed and is unsatisfying. I feel the script has some holes in it which made me feel like the movie is missing some important details. This is why I did not really love the film.

Even though this film is not "Pixar great" it still is a good movie to watch with your family. I give it 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 7 to 15. Adults might like it as well. I recommend this to people who have read the book or like book adaptations and fantasy movies. A Wrinkle In Time comes out March 9, 2018 in theaters nationwide.

Reviewed by Ryan R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 6-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


MAGIC OF READING, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
MAGIC OF READING, THE
CLAUDIA MOYSSET
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-12
Topic - Family
Description - A young boy escapes his boredom by unlocking the magic of reading with the help of his big sister. Together, they both venture into a world that only literature can unlock for them and are shown a glimpse of the world that rests bound in the pages of wonderful books. They escape from the clutches of a monster and battle it to their freedom, challenging their imaginations to follow along with the book.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - What a great short student film! Well shot, great audio, excellent background music and very believable actors. This is exactly what a student film should look like. The topic is so appropriate for school aged kids and, of course, the them of the film - reading - is admirable. We heart fully accept and recommend it for ages 5-12. We give it 4 out of 5 stars. Can't wait to see your next film. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 3.5 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


FLOOGALS: PROJECT EGG HUNT

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
FLOOGALS: PROJECT EGG HUNT       Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 2-8
Topic - Family
Description - Join the Floogals on a mission of discovery as they explore Earth and the funny "hoomans" who live there! Each day, Captain Fleeker, First Officer Flo, and Junior Boomer encounter something that sparks their curiosity, setting in motion the day's research "project" and triggering an exciting adventure! In Project Egg Hunt, the Floogals mistakenly think Mom and Dad Hooman have accidentally dropped candy eggs in the garden when in fact they have placed them there on purpose to create an egg hunt for their kids. The Floogals think they are being helpful and tidy up the eggs! Once the Floogals realize their mistake, they must get all the eggs back on the ground before the kids arrive so their fun day won't be ruined.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is a colorful and exciting DVD with five episodes, totaling 60 minutes of fun! The Floogals are a group of curious alien scientists named Fleeker, Boomer and Flo. Their curiosity is sparked by everyday earthly experiences and adventures that lead to experimentation, discovery and observation. The mix of crisp animation alongside "hoomans" (real actors) and live animals is really unique. These little aliens sometimes get into a bit of trouble, which they use problem-solving and teamwork to remedy as they learn something along the way. The menu offers the option to play all episodes or watch them individually. Each episode has a run time of 10 to 12 minutes and include: Project Egg Hunt, Project Rainbow, Project Kite, Project Picnic and Project Tortoise. This DVD is a great educational tool and extremely entertaining. Children between the ages of 2 to 5 will definitely enjoy the songs and story lines. Adventure is everywhere they go. They're the Floogals! 3, 2, 1 LET'S GO! I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars for outstanding animation, cohesiveness, interesting story lines, songs, educational and overall entertainment value. Reviewed by Eli B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Floogals Project Egg Hunt is a DVD about tiny secret aliens from planet Floon that sneak around your house learning about humans or, as they call them, hoomans. I really enjoy the animation and admire how they have real people walking around with animated characters. It's a very colorful, bright show with a new lesson in each episode.

The three Floogals in this series are Captain Fleeker (Rasmus Hardiker), the bravest of the group, First Officer Flo (Jules de Jongh), the smartest of the group and Junior Boomer (Hugo Harold-Harrison), who is clumsy and crazy in most episodes, which makes him very funny. These Floogals wander around a house, encountering new things that the 'hoomans' are doing. Then they spend the day researching what the object or activity is and sometimes try to help, often with hilarious results. At the end of each episode they send their report to their leader, who always likes it. So, they receive a strip of stickers based on their observations.

The episodes in this DVD are, Project Egg Hunt, Project Rainbow, Project Kite, Project Picnic and Project Tortoise. My favorite episode is Project Rainbow which is about the Floogals walking in the yard and, as they take cover from a sudden rain shower, they hear the girl "hooman" talk about a rainbow and they decide to investigate rainbows. I like this episode because I can relate to it, as I loved trying to find the end of the rainbow when I was younger. Another good episode is called, Project Tortoise which is about the Floogals discovering a tortoise and deciding to research it more, but when they look back at the tortoise he is gone. The Floogals must find him and bring him home. The title episode, Project Egg Hunt, is very funny because they almost ruin the egg hunt by trying to help. My favorite character is Junior Boomer because he is always being clumsy and causing accidents that sometimes helps the team in unexpected ways. The message of this DVD is, if you work together you can do anything.

I rate this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 5 because every episode teaches a new lesson and is very repetitive. Older kids and adults might find it amusing too. This DVD is available on Blu-ray and standard DVD now so, check it out.

Reviewed by Damon F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

Floogals: Project Egg Hunt, directed by Ruth Ducker is an imaginative, exciting space adventure that seems to take place right in my own backyard! The characters are diverse, funny and kind and the storylines are clever yet simple thrills. The story follows three Floogals - Captain Fleeker, First Officer Flo and Junior Boomer who are sent to explore and understand the interesting ways of the Hoomans.

The animation and voices add to the special aspect of each Floogal that makes them unique. For example, Junior Boomer is innocent and the youngest of the three which is shown by his bigger eyes and wide smile. The voice actors are able to capture the character's personality in their voice. Dominique Moore voices First Officer Flo and expresses the sweetness of her character in her voice.

My favorite part is how the Hoomans are considered the mysterious aliens and the Floogals are there to learn about these queer creatures and their ways.

The message of this show is to help those you can and never miss a chance to learn something new. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 8. It is available on DVD now so, be sure to look for it.

Reviewed by Sahiba K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

The fabulous Floogals are back with five brand new episodes that are filled with magic and experimentation! I love how all the episodes are spring and summer related with the Floogals observing rainbows with pots of gold, egg hunts, kits, picnics and tortoises.

The alien characters in Floogals Project Egg Hunt are just adorable. I find Flo (Jules de Jongh) to be just too darn cute. Her alien personality is a true scientist at heart. She is also very silly and friendly with her other alien partners. Flo is a fantastic role model for young children because she teaches them the value of observation and experimentation.

Fleeker (Rasmus Hardiker) is the kind of captain who put everything he has into his observations and projects. He comes up with the most hilarious hypothesis about the new objects they find. Make sure to keep an eye out for Rasmus Hardiker in the new SYFI series Krypton as the character Kem. The first episode is amazing.

Even though Boomer (Hugo Harold-Harrison) is the youngest in the bunch, he has the biggest heart. He also has the biggest appetite. He loves to eat, so any mission that includes a scrumptious meal is his favorite. My favorite episode is "Project Egg Hunt", because as I watched it I laughed a lot. I know what the eggs are used for, yet the Floogals don't and they are hilarious as they make crazy guesses and try their best to figure out the puzzling mystery. They try to be helpful and put the eggs back, only to find out that they have to hide them again.

This DVD has many lessons for kids such as the wonders of experimentation, observation, discovery and science in general. The Floogals teach kids by observing objects and humans and seeing how strange objects are used in our everyday life. Experimentation is completed by trying all kinds of crazy experiments, whether it is tortoise races or catching rainbows. The discovery comes once the Floogals have made their experiments and observations and finally find out what the object is. Simple things seem complicated, because they are small aliens.

I recommend this for ages 4 to 13 and give it 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 60 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-5
Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99
Media: DVD


BIRTHDAY BULLY, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BIRTHDAY BULLY, THE
DONOVAN THOMPSON
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 5-15
Topic - Family
Description - When a young girl is bullied at school, she finds strength in the most unexpected places and learns that it only takes one.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This timely film very nicely shows how good usually prevails over evil. The whole issue of peer pressure among young teens is brought to light. A crowd of students at first hovers around Allie because she acts cool and has a superior-to-thou attitude. But soon enough, this entourage of kids realizes that Allie is a backstabber and a bully towards them all, and they all end up supporting the new girl at school, Mia. Allie is an overly arrogant young girl who quickly passes judgment on a new arrival at her school. She's quite the game-player, knowing how to manipulate her gang of followers into thinking and acting according to her biases. Both moms in the film, Molly and Claire, display some good parenting skills in taming Allie's bullying behavior. In the end, Mia's innocence and pleasant personality wins over the hearts of Allie's former friends. I truly cheered for the underdog and was happy to see the bratty bully lose the support of her peers. Allie (Kennedy Jordan) is a very convincing bully. She has a gnarly attitude and smirky facial expressions that make her a true intimidator. It is fun watching her supposed homeys stand up to her tyrannical rule in the school cafeteria, after the party. Donavon Thompson does some interesting film editing when he focuses in on a snarling, unpleasant Allie, using a black border around her face (5:58 time stamp). This effect singles her out as the dark villain. My favorite scene is when Allie's mom calls her daughter on the carpet during her party and then proceeds to call Mia's mom. The exasperation and look of "I'm losing control" on Allie's face is priceless and the beginning of Allie's getting her "just desserts." The film is well produced with excellent camera work and audio recording. Lighting and editing are very good. I like the cut-aways that appear to be shot on a cell phone. Sets and costumes are very suitable. The cast seem to all be pretty upper middle class kids. The talent is all very believable from the moms to the kids. Kudos to the director for delivering a well made film. Any film festival would be happy to show this. The movie conveys a powerful message that "bullying does not pay." It shows the important difference between yielding to peer pressure versus generating peer support. It also mentions the various ways that bullying can manifest its ugly head - face-to-face, through behind-the-scenes rumors, online through social media and others. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 15. Reviewed by Jeff M., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 9 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-15
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


WATER BOTTLE'S ADVENTURE, THE

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
WATER BOTTLE'S ADVENTURE, THE
ALICE SINKNER
Series: ENVIRONMENTAL SHORT, AGES 5-13
Topic - Family
Description - Walter the Water Droplet along with Clean Water work together to catch and treat a group of mischievous dirty water bottles so they can get clean and contribute to society and help save lives. Join them on this adventure to cleanliness and happiness.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Adorable, fun and informative. Kudos to this fifth grader on creating this claymation piece about clean water. Well done. Recommended for ages 5 to 13 and I give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 4 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-13
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


CHANGE FOR CHIMPS

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
CHANGE FOR CHIMPS
MICHELE FISHER
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 8-18
Topic - Family
Description - A young girl's love for chimpanzees sends her on a journey to raise funds to save chimps from captivity, in hopes to deliver the funds to her hero Dr. Jane Goodall.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see kids comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This short is bout a little girl who wants to save chimpanzees. I really like how there are so many different sets and locations including the beach, school, the park, the streets and houses of real people. The sound quality is great and I like that they used real chimpanzees. There is very little dialogue. I recommend it to the KIDS FIRST! Film festival because it has a great message and is educational as well as entertaining. The message of this movie is that chimpanzees shouldn't be in cages. They should be free to roam free in the forest. The fact that this film supports Dr. Jane Goodall's work is another plus. For any festival focused on the environment, preservation of endangered species and youth activism, this is a plus! I rate this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Adults will like it too. Reviewed by Damon F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic
Runtime: 7 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


HUNGRY

This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
HUNGRY
JILL SIMON
Series: INDIE SHORT, AGES 5-18
Topic - Family
Description - An idealistic grade school teacher has a fear of speaking up in public (other than in front of her kids). But when she finds out that children in her school are going hungry - thanks to federal cutbacks - it compels her to do things she wouldn't have thought she could do, including confronting a Congressman, to help out the children.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - More power to shy people! This film shows that brave voices can be heard and can make a difference in this world. Grassroots movements can sway politicians! This is a great reminder that government is meant to be "for the people." Allison (Jillie Simon), the grade school teacher, is quite the heroine in this film. She encourages her students to speak up and communicate their various concerns to adults. At the same time, she's a strong advocate for justice and change. She's great at respectfully telling others how to right their wrongs. Her efforts at improving people's lives are supported by her boyfriend, who shows her genuine love. The arrogance of Congressman Eric Roberts is truly irritating, as he tries to push his weight around. It's no surprise to see a female citizen being forcefully escorted out of the building where the congressman is holding a meeting. Once the news media catches him in the act of abusing power, he changes his tune and supports Allison's pro-lunch program pitch. I really enjoyed the peppy and energetic musical score by Thomas Simon. It truly enhances the film's impact in a positive way. The camera work and editing are very well done. I give credit to the filmmaker for excellent audio recording and direction. The cast is well chosen as well. Allison's personality is very bubbly. She has a great mix of positive work ethic, social consciousness and a fun relationship with her boyfriend. My favorite part of the film is seeing the school kids strike for the reinstatement of their suspended teacher. Their passion is admirable! What a powerful way to spend recess! The message of this film speaks of the importance of caring for our children, both locally and internationally. Many kids from disadvantaged families show up at school undernourished and hungry, and it adversely impacts their ability to focus and learn. For example, it is difficult for them to function at a high level if they don't get proper amounts of protein. Government programs should at least subsidize protein-rich meals. Likewise, the government should pass and enforce regulations to help preserve our environment. I truly enjoyed this film and highly recommend it for the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival, especially any that have a focus on social issues or education. I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18. Adults will enjoy it as well. Reviewed by Jeff M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 20 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO



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