The Family category has 1441 KIDS FIRST! endorsed titles
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KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
RATCHET & CLANK
FOCUS FEATURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - Ratchet and Clank tells the story of two unlikely heroes as they struggle to stop a vile alien named Chairman Drek from destroying every planet in the Solana Galaxy. When the two stumble upon a dangerous weapon capable of destroying entire planets, they must join forces with a team of colorful heroes called The Galactic Rangers in order to save the galaxy. Along the way they'll learn about heroism, friendship, and the importance of discovering one's own identity
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love the animated movie Ratchet & Clank which is based on the popular Play Station video game. From the beginning to the end, the film kept me on the edge of my seat, as it is an adventurous, funny, heartwarming and witty story. One of the funniest scenes is when Dr. Nefarious shoots Chairman Drek with a laser gun and turns him into a sheep.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

Downton Abbey is a Carnival Films/MASTERPIECE Co-Production written and created by Julian Fellowes. The series is Executive Produced by Gareth Neame, Julian Fellowes, Liz Trubridge, and Nigel Marchant. Chris Croucher is the Producer. The Executive Producer for MASTERPIECE is Rebecca Eaton. The Senior Series Producer for MASTERPIECE is Susanne Simpson.
Runtime: 480 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 16-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 49.99
Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
UPTON CHARLES - DOG DETECTIVE, TIP TOP
NEPTUNE PRESS LLC/ D.G. STERN
Series: E-BOOK, AGES 5-12
Description - This is about as exciting as it gets. The carnival is in town and the twins really want to go, although Upton is not too keen on the idea, until the Chief of Police calls and says that there has been a disappearance the snake lady and all her snakes are gone. Upton, who is a Bichon Frise (that's "BEE-shon free-ZEY"), a little white dog, knows his duty and joins the Charles' to sniff out the missing reptiles, although he has no idea what a snake smells like. Actually, Upton doesn't like snakes at all. Come along and enjoy the ride. Watch clues slither by as Upton solves the mystery of Tip Top.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - What an awesome find! I truly wish I had the Upton Charles Dog Detective books to read with my children as they were growing up! The Charles family, consisting of Mom, Dad, the twins and a talented Bichon Frise named Upton are called upon to help solve mysteries in their community. Readers will enjoy picturing life from a dog's point of view while being entertained with colorful details and intriguing twists to the plot.

Tip Top takes us to the travelling carnival where Amelia the Snake Lady and all of her snakes have disappeared. Clue after clue are discussed and help the readers sort out facts in order to build their own theories on the mysterious disappearance.

As a former school administrator, I applaud Florida State for including Upton Charles books in their Common Core Curriculum. In Tip Top, author D.G. Stern adds to the story's interest by dropping names of famous people such as former President Clinton and former Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev helping make the story feel more relevant to real life. If young readers aren't careful, they might increase their knowledge about topics like the Great Depression, the American Revolution and the Second World War. The author brilliantly infuses historically significant facts into the narration in a painless and entertaining manner.

Tip Top is written such that struggling readers can enjoy the storyline and avid readers will be enthralled. I wholeheartedly endorse Tip Top and the other books in the Upton Charles Dog Detective series!

Reviewed by Ruth A., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This series of books follows a dog detective named Upton who, together with his family, helps people. In Tip Top, Upton and his family (mom, dad and twins) try to find out what happened to a snake charmer who has gone missing from the carnival. This story is topsy-turvy and you don't know what will happen next. But Upton is there to sniff out all the clues and help the family solve the case.

This story made me laugh because Upton talks directly to the reader and he is very logical and reasonable. Throughout the book, Upton and the other characters reference a lot of information. Some things I knew about and some I didn't. I think this a great thing for a kid's book because it teaches kids about new things. Or, like with me, makes them ask their parents about things they didn't know about before, like certain events in history.

This book reinforces the fact that animals have thoughts too and they are smart and have lots to say - if only you know how to listen to them. Upton's family knows how smart he is and they have learned to listen to him and understand him. This is good because Upton is definitely helpful in solving this case. Also, the book is good because you learn how not to act or behave by watching the bad guy.

The character of Upton definitely stands out. Even though he is another species, he is the most remarkable character in the book because of his brainpower and curiosities. He is a layered character with lots of different sides. Unfortunately, he sometimes doubts himself by saying things like "I'm only a little white dog." I did not like that part because it is like saying "I'm bald so I can't live my dreams as a hair stylist." But in the end, Upton comes through so I suppose he overcomes his doubts.

This books meets all the guidelines for a great kids' book: no gratuitous violence or profanity; no inappropriate sexual behavior; no bias in terms of race, gender or religion; and no unsafe behavior. The storyline is simple and easy to follow and Upton steals almost every scene.

I recommend this book for children from four to eight years of age (if you live in Madrid like I do and need more books to read in English, then from ten to fourteen). I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars because the idea of a dog detective is fun and I like the fact that Upton talks in the first person. Unfortunately, there are a lot of typos, extra or missing words, and grammar mistakes in the online edition that I read, but I'm sure that will get corrected.

Reviewed by Miles T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Tip Top is a fun mystery book that would be entertaining for kids. I really like how they added facts to the story so you can learn things while you read. Sneaking historical facts into the story is very clever. Kids can learn about a lot of different things about science (snakes) and history (presidents).

Tip Top follows the Charles family and their white Bichon Frise named Upton. They help solve mysteries with the police department. In this book, they are asked to find the Snake Lady from the carnival, Amanda, who is missing. The family works together really hard to find clues to solve the mystery.

The moral of this story is that, if you work together, you can achieve lots. Officer Tree, Upton and the whole family all help each other find out what happened. They all contribute to finding clues.

I also like the pictures. There aren't lots of them, but they add visuals so you know how Upton and the other characters look.

I rate this book a 4.5 out of 5 stars because it helps to teach you facts and it is entertaining for kids.

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

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: -
Suggested Retail Price: $ 1.99
Media: Book


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


NEW HOME FOR CHARLIE THE CHOCOLATE CHIHUAHUA, A
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
NEW HOME FOR CHARLIE THE CHOCOLATE CHIHUAHUA, A
FAT RED COUCH Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: APP, AGES 5-8
Description - Small is the New Big! Read, Watch, Play, Create, and Discover with Charlie the Chocolate Chihuahua! It isn't easy being little, but it sure is fun! Charlie the Chocolate Chihuahua is a tiny dog in a big world! Help Charlie find his way in his new home with this engaging, fun, and thoughtful family entertainment that will inspire creativity.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This app offers two major games and a reading comprehension section. Charlie, a Chihuahua, is in his new home and learns to get along with the two other dogs who are already live there as part of the family, as well as relating to other animals including a squirrel and birds though this is quite minimal. A jigsaw puzzle section featuring Charlie in various settings can become quite challenging and represents the most likely part children would return to.

It is very bright and colorful, fun to use and has exceptional audio quality. The games are slightly challenging. They use audio reinforcement nicely as one solves the small challenges. However, after a few times playing the games, a child could lose interest as the challenge lacks depth.

The navigation could be a bit clearer. To get back to the home page, you have to move your finger (on iPad) to the top left corner to make the icon for Charlie re-appear. In the reading section, you need to swipe up on the bottom to get arrows to direct you back. I found it a bit confusing.

In the Reading Comprehensive section, there is conflict between one large dog and a squirrel and the lesson learned seems out of context. The animation is basic but smooth and definitely colorful. The sound is great, very clear and makes use of a variety of voice types.

There is little entertainment value but the educational benefits include concentration skills that can be developed with the jigsaw puzzle. The social benefits are minimal as the lessons learned in the reading section are so basic and not always convincing based on the story. Interestingly, it is mentioned that Charlie is a rescued dog. This idea could have been explored further to give more depth to the story. Of course, the reading section itself is helpful for young readers and allows for users to be read to or to read by themselves. I recommend it for ages 5 to 7. REviewed by Michael F., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A New Home for Charlie the Chocolate Chihuahua is an exciting app that makes use of really cool visuals and sound effects (including voice acting). It is an easy to use app that makes use of colored buttons to assist in navigating it. This app contains a selection of things to do that I think kids between the ages of 5 and 9 would really enjoy, these include stories to read, videos to watch, games to play, and artwork to create. All of these have an emphasis on exploration and creativity. I think that it is a great app for younger children with the only downside being occasional performance issues that I experienced, including lag.

There is a ton of variety for kids to enjoy in this app. There are things to read, videos to watch, games to play, and artwork to create. This extensive content for kids to explore is complete with enjoyable graphics, artwork, and animation.

I believe a child would enjoy this because it features a loveable cast of dogs (and who doesn't like dogs) that are created using impressive visuals. The user also gets to interact with these dogs in ways that are kid friendly such as games and videos.

This app features a simple, but effective user interface that uses colored icons to help navigate. The content is definitely suited to the audience with appropriate vocabulary and concepts. The characters portray characteristics that show positive values of friendship and cooperation. When there is conflict, the characters work together to resolve it. They definitely are uplifting and positive.

The app offers a collection of learning opportunities for children to read, watch informative videos, play games and use their imagination creatively. Reviewed by Michael O., KIDS FIRST! Juror

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-9
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: App


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

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

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

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

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

Reviewed by Jan B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - coming
Runtime: 81 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.98
Media: DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Runtime: 110 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Reviewed by Tre'ana H., age 12.

Video editing by Miles DeVesty

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Reviewed by Benjamin P., age 10.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU: THE SONG OF SPRING
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU: THE SONG OF SPRING
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: SERIES, AGES 2-5
Description - Join Little Nutbrown Hare and his father, Big Nutbrown Hare, as they romp through more charming adventures! Fun-loving Little Field Mouse, mischievous Little Grey Squirrel and tricky Little Redwood Fox are back, as well as Little White Owl with her tales of mystery. Together the friends explore the meadows, forests and streams and on to Cloudy Mountain...playing, laughing and discovering the wonder that the world holds.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Guess How Much I Love You: The Song of Spring is a wonderfully sweet collection of short animated stories. Based on the classic book, Little Nutbrown Hare goes on adventure after adventure with his friend Little Field Mouse. These stories are light and joyful, and each one teaches some type of lesson, such as keeping promises, acceptance and change. The production is well-done and professional, and the voices are delightful. I recommend this for ages 1 to 8.

Reviewed by Karyn A., KIDS FIRST! Juror.

This program is based on the beloved children's book and is beautifully done! The colors are soft muted pastels and are gorgeous! The two main characters, Little Nutbrown Hare and his field mouse friend, are sweet, playful and are cute to watch explore their meadow. They make estimates about discoveries and after a while, they will generally fetch Big Nutbrown Hare for help. The stories end with the rabbits telling each other how much they love each other. Can't say enough good things about this title! I was enraptured!.

Reviewed by Jan B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The animated DVD, Guess How Much I Love You: The Song of Spring is really wonderful. It is super cute and has lots of life lessons to learn. I especially like the main character, Little Nutbrown Hare because he is always so curious. If there is a problem he tries to figure it out.

There are seven different stories on this DVD based on the classic books by Sam McBratney. In each of the stories there is a mystery to solve and important lessons to learn. Every episode is about growing up and learning life lessons by friends helping each other. One of the episodes I especially like is the Busy as a Bee story. In this fun episode Little Nutbrown Hare makes a promise to help his father but really wants to play with his friend, Little Field Mouse. Little Nutbrown Hare learns a valuable life lesson; in this case, even when you may want to do something else like play with your friends, if you have already made a promise it is important to keep that promise. Another episode I really like is Little Green Worm. Here we learn some science facts such as discovering how a caterpillar turns into a butterfly. We also learn some cool science vocabulary like chrysalis, which means cocoon.

The message of this film is to feel free to explore, don't be scared and how having a friend at your side helps you get through anything. I love that this message is told through heartwarming stories about friendship, family science and more.

I think the character voices are amazing and fit the characters just perfectly. The animation is simple, but very believable. The animated characters are adorable and all the stories take place in an animated forest and meadow that are beautifully colorful.

I think viewers will love this DVD released by N Circle Entertainment because, overall there is a lot of heart, great messages and lots of educational lessons. It is a fun and an entertaining DVD. N Circle offers a nicely package product and they even include a fun craft activity. The animation and stories are simple enough for little ones to understand and, at the same time, offer good learning lessons for older kids. I give Guess How Much I Love You DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 8. Check it out!

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

This collection of TV episodes is adorable. The hand drawn features are exquisitely detailed. It looks like just what I pictured it would in my head when I read the stories on my Leapster when I was younger. It has a quaint fairy tale feel to it with huggable characters. It is a fun collection to watch. The DVD comes with seven episodes that flow flawlessly together and it is easy to sit and watch the whole collection although your face might hurt from smiling and giggling too long. It was refreshing to sit back, chill and watch a DVD that was easy to watch and made me smile.

The Little Green Worn is my favorite episode because I laughed out loud while watching the animals investigating their newfound insect.

My favorite character is Little Nutbrown Hare. I like seeing how he interacts with all the different animals. His relationship with his father is adorable. He spends his days playing in the meadow and discovering mysteries and, with the assistance of his father and the other animals, they learn many new things and solve mysteries. They think up different ways to express their love for each other - "as much as all the insects in the meadow," "bigger then the moon," and things like that. I find this to be a cute game that all parents should play with their children. This game applies to any relationship. It is a fun way to express our feelings towards others and is very fun and loveable.

One of my favorite things about this series are the voiceover talent. They are perfect. They matched the characters wonderfully. For example, the tiny characters have small, squeaky and adorable voices. All the animals are cute, huggable and each one has a different personality that makes you love them and smile each time you meet another one. It makes you want to jump through the TV and play in the meadow. This is a perfect way to get into the spirit of the spring season after a long winter. Easter is on its way and these hare-based stories are perfect for the holiday. They offer a good refresher course on basic science and have many learning lessons. The best lesson is that things change.

I recommend these stories for kids age 3 to 9. Older kids might like it as well because, although they already know the lessons this DVD teaches, many kids might enjoy remembering what life was like when they were younger and seeing how much they have learned. I give this movie 5 out of 5 sparkling carrots. It is available now on DVD so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Morgan B.
Runtime: 90 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-8
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: Video and DVD


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BIM AND BAM: THE ADVENTURE SERIES
EVERYTHING SLIGHT PEPPER
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 5-8
Description - Bim and Bam is an animated adventure series for children, set in the Caribbean. Twin siblings Bim and Bam have free reign when it comes to adventure - and there are a million things to get your imagination working overtime when exploring an idyllic Caribbean island! The naturally curious 5-and-a-quarter-year-old twins (Bim is the girl; Bam, the boy) are on their first trip to their parent's birthplace - the Caribbean. Who would have guessed that tiny islands could be so chock-full of big fun beyond just sea, sun or sand? The potent pair relies on instinct, curiosity and teamwork to figure things out as they explore the amazing world around them. Thankfully, a combination of their bright ideas, some superhero tools and a few good friends makes nothing impossible. To Bim and Bam, life is the greatest adventure: they are always expanding their boundaries and mastering new skills with every fun-filled experience.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The theme is a good one and the main characters are likable and also unique. There are positive messages such as "believe in yourself" and "keep practicing" so it scores high in social/emotional value. The beginning two pages did not flow with the present day and the online trailer and the beginning took away somewhat from the complete script. I give this one 3 out of 5 stars and it does meet the KIDS FIRST! criteria. I feel that a few changes would give it a higher rating.

It is a bit confusing. I realize that it is a beginning to a series but I felt the beginning could have been not included. It is only two pages and then it jumps to present day. I also watched the online trailer which would be the opening to the series and the beginning does not match up with the trailer. I felt that the twins' language and the way they speak is beyond that of a typical five-year-old. Yes, I realized right away that they are supposed to be very bright for five and a quarter-year's old but, they seemed more like age 7 or 8. The adventure part and educational aspect is interesting so I do give it points for that but I'm uncertain of the entertainment value.

The underlying idea is good and I think that learning about new things through Bim and Bam's adventures is a fun concept. Unfortunately, it seemed to lack entertainment value and I'm not sure it would grab the attention of a young person. The first show in a series really needs to catch and audience and the twin's adventure needs more excitement. The dialogue is more advanced and could be tough for the target audience to grasp.


KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 22 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-8
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: DVD


BIG FREEZE, THE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BIG FREEZE, THE
LITTLE MAMMOTH MEDIA Click to purchase directly from the producer
Series: SHORT, AGES 5-8
Description - SEE what happens when things FREEZE...A FROZEN ADVENTURE where artists carve ice and snow into amazing shapes - some are more than 60 feet high! Join skaters on the world's largest skating rink, and see how they make ice cream at Ben & Jerry's! LEARN about glaciers and how they form and grow and melt. Ride on a giant ice explorer, and see why huge icebergs act like the ice cubes in your drink! TRAVEL around the world, from Sapporo, Japan for the annual Snow Festival, to Canada's Columbia Ice Fields, to the frozen Great Lakes on a US Coast Guard icebreaker! Join us for this freezing BIG Adventure!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Who knew there was so much to be learned about Frozen Stuff! From icicles to snow covered hills to ice skating rinks to ice and snow sculptures to ice cream, think Ben & Jerry's, this informational show examines all things frozen. How about the largest skating rink in the world? Where's that you ask? You have to watch this to find out. Little Mammoth Media has assembled a great collection of ice-inspired situations that give you a new definition of ICE!

The videography is professionally accomplished, the background music quite fun and inspiring and the youth narrator clearly describes every situation. This is a film that could be shown in a classroom setting and works very well as a stand alone that curious kids will enjoy. The language is age-appropriate for school-aged kids. And, even I learned stuff about ice that I never knew, like how water is used as glue in ice sculptures. It almost made me like winter. The quality is excellent. The structure is simple and straight forward.

I am a huge fan of Little Mammoth Media's "big" series and this latest addition is as delightful as I anticipated. My favorite part is seeing all the extraordinary ice and snow sculptures. Reviewed by Sarah S., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This film starts off showing educational facts about water and how ice is made and then goes to Ottawa, Canada and shows educational facts and interesting things such as ice sculptures. It is pretty cool and there is some music which makes it more fun to watch. I liked that it shows some different places around the world but I think that some parts were too long such as showing the ice skating in Canada. I think it is also good that there is more than one person talking in the film and that kids will learn a lot about ice from watching this film. I liked seeing the different ice sculptures and a building made out of ice. I would recommend this for younger kids ages 5-8. This would be the only downfall. The narration and the educational part would be too simple for kids over the age of 8. There is a bonus treat after the credits which are mainly scenes from the film without the narration. I think that there could have been something more exciting at the end but it was okay to watch. I give this 4 stars for educational and interesting facts and the ice sculptures are really cool. Reviewed by Joshua B., KIDS FIRST! Reviewer

I loved this program! I like to learn and this is the perfect learning experience during cold days like we're having. I really enjoyed learning about glaciers and it made me want to see one person really bad! This show is great for all ages I believe, but I suppose I'd say ages 8 to 15 will enjoy it most! I give it 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Britney V, age 11

I love Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream and was a little disappointed when I realized how its made, but it is still really neat! I hope to make ice cream one day and this show made me hope more. I like the other stuff as well, but I liked the ice cream part the most. I think kids ages 5 to 12 will like this show and I give it 4 out of 5 stars only because I didn't care for the narrator so much. Reviewed by Evelynn V, age 9.
Runtime: 40 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.95
Media: Video and DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


This title is available for purchase from LITTLE MAMMOTH MEDIA

KIWI: MEET TWIKI AND TWINI
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
KIWI: MEET TWIKI AND TWINI
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 2-5
Description - Let's learn English with Twiki and Twini! In this DVD, Twiki and Twini will help teach your little one phonic skills! In each episode, Twiki and Twini takes us on an adventure to discover new words and new sounds. Get ready to enter into an unexpected universe comprised of sounds, words, and images. Enjoy eighteen phonic based episodes with Twiki and Twini!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This program has multiple mini-programs and not one main storyline. All mini-programs started out introducing the characters in a situation where they would then learn how to spell new words. After the situation is resolved, they review the words to end. The show is simple and easy to follow for younger viewers. It shows two cute claymation kiwi birds that get into little situations where the opportunity arises to learn how to spell new words and also learn manners. My six and three year olds liked the program but it is too slow to watch with anyone older than six. Overall it has high quality content and is perfect for very young viewers. It is very good in helping teach kids to spell simple words, teaching manners and teaching how to control your emotions. I can see my children trying to spell simple words if they watched this often enough.

The cover is clean and colorful. The stop motion claymation is interesting and appealing. The vocabulary is appropriate for a young group. However, you should be aware that it was made in New Zealand and there are Kiwi words and phrases that U.S. kids don't relate to such as: "Going on holiday" and "Don't be cross." My children didn't know what those phrases and keywords meant so I had to explain them in "American terms".

Another thing I thought was a bit confusing was how it seemed like it was geared towards a very young viewer but they were teaching them how to spell a word. I think that the age they are hoping to capture with this program is too young to remember or understand that part. But, it flows well and is very logical. Both my three year old and six year old enjoyed it. The only unappealing thing to me is that, because it is so simple, it is difficult to watch as an adult. Also, the characters talk in grunts with an adult and child narrating. I would prefer the characters spoke themselves instead of grunting.

Reviewed by Jan B., KIDS FIRST! juror.

This DVD contains 18 short episodes of Twiki and Twini, 2 entertaining, kiwi-looking birds. Each episode uses claymation (stop-motion clay animation) to teach words through Twiki and Twini's adventures. The episodes are funny and educational and my kids enjoyed watching them. The way that the birds interact with the voice-over narrators is unique and the additional characters in each episode are likable and colorful. My only negative critique of the show is that the words are loosely based on the theme of the episode, but they are pretty random, following no particular phonetical pattern. I don't think kids would really learn much about phonics or reading from watching this, aside from basic vocabulary words or the overall general correlation of words to a group of letters. However, my children were captivated by the episodes and I feel they would enjoy watching them for sheer entertainment, with some minimal educational aspect. This DVD is very cute and entertaining, and I would recommend it for ages 2 to 7. By Karyn A., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Twiki and Twini are kiwi birds. The show was about the two kiwi birds going places. One of our favorite parts was when the red guy liked the princess, and he tried to save the princess and there was a dragon! We also liked when they went to the beach. It showed us how to spell words. We liked it because it was funny. We liked that the birds did funny things. There wasn't anything we didn't like about it. We loved all the parts. But it was long.

"It's funny. I liked the Kiwis. I liked both of them. I liked them because they are so fun and so funny. I want to watch it again." 6 year old. "They are mad and tease each other. I like it. It is funny. I like when they are driving a car and they are making a train. I would watch it again." 3 year old.

The kids noted that sometimes they are mean to each other but then they say, "sorry". The children talked about how the two kiwi birds had to apologize for teasing the giant. They also were interested to learn what "not get cross" meant.

"There is a giant. They spell words. They are mean to each other but then they said sorry. It was so fun, fun, fun, fun!"
Runtime: 95 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-6
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: Video and DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF BUBBLE GOB
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF BUBBLE GOB
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DVD, AGES 4 - 12
Description - The universe is in grave danger of extinction! The evil Snake extinguishes the stars as he passes through the galaxy, causing chaos and plunging the planets into darkness. The Little Prince must leave his Asteroid home and beloved friend, Rose, in his quest to outsmart the Snake and save the universe from doom.� Accompanied by his trusted companion, the Fox, the Little Prince travels from planet to planet, braving danger and discovering vast and enchanted worlds.� Will the extraordinary gifts of the Little Prince bring each of the planets back to life? And will he ever find his way home?

When the Little Prince reaches the Planet of the Bubble Gob, the whole ocean is covered with items discarded by the Creatall. This causes the water level to rise daily, threatening the Creatall's fragile homes. The Little Prince realizes that the problem is the Bubble Gob.� The Bubble Gob is an underwater mechanical creature, who is supposed to destroy the rubbish and clean the ocean. However, the Bubble Gob is faulty and continues to grow bigger and bigger! �It has grown so big that its slightest movement causes the ocean level to rise dangerously.� Will the Little Prince be able to save the Creatall and their homes?� Find out in The Planet of the Bubble Gob!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Little Prince: The Planet of Bubble Gob is a fun, entertaining animated treasure! This film brings to life the journeys of the Little Prince as he travels to different planets. On the Planet of the Bubble Gob, The Little Prince and The Fox work with the Creatall's to solve the problem of their litter-strewn seas.

While familiarity with the classic tale of The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exup�ry, would introduce the characters of the Little Prince, the Rose and Fox, it is not necessary in order for a child to immediately get enthralled with the plot of this film.

The animation sets this film apart from other children's films. The vibrant colors and very imaginative animation bring life to the artistic inventions created by the Creatall's. Because of the richness of the animation, I couldn't help but compare similarities with the setting and use of repurposed materials to that of the 1995 futuristic thriller Waterworld.

While there are antagonists and protagonists alike, I appreciate that all of the humans are positive role models. I rate The Little Prince: The Planet of Bubble Gob 4.5 out 5 stars. I recommend the ages 4 to 12 because there are some suspenseful moments that might frighten younger children.

By Ruth A., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror

I really enjoyed this film and it made me think of how important it is to keep our ocean clean. This is an issue that is very important to both my 12-year-old son and I since we participate in beach clean up monthly. The Bubble Bob is not exactly the same concept but it is still endangering the ocean and its creatures. The characters are entertaining and the animation, although a bit simple, ;is a strong aspect of this film. Honestly, I expected this to be a mainly fun film to watch for younger children but it really is packed with meaningful life lesson messages. It shows how important recycling is and how important it is to take care of our planet Earth which includes our ocean. I think that this is shown in a rather unique way with the Bubble Gob. I like that this film may teach and inspire young children to get involved in recycling and in other ways of taking care of our planet. Just when I thought that would be the only message, I found that it also teaches that mistakes can be fixed and that team work is important. This is a film that I would recommend for children ages 4 to 12. I had thought when it first started that my 12-year-old son would not want to watch it and he would think that it was for younger children but it held his interest and he liked the storyline and the main message of the film. I give this 4 out of 5 stars for its entertaining, educational and social aspects. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Little Prince: The Planet of the Bubble Gob is an imaginative, colorful film with great animation and takes some of my favorite characters from a classic story on a new exciting journey. I really like the modern characters the show adds because they have a lot of perseverance and they always want to create something new to help their planet.

The Little Prince: The Planet of the Bubble Gob is based on the characters from a famous French story by Antoine de St. Exup�ry published in 1943. Here, the Little Prince, alongside his best friend Fox, are sent around a futuristic universe saving planets from the evil clutches of the malevolent Snake. One day, the Little Prince and Fox discover a mysterious new planet and find out it is inhabited by a species called the Creatall who are always inventing new things to help their people and their planet, like a kooky machine that shoots toast. Soon, the Creatalls' technology senses a wave coming to destroy their planet. The Little Prince finds out that a giant recycling machine called the Bubble Gob is causing these massive and dangerous waves. The Little Prince must find the Great Inventor who made the Bubble Gob to fix the glitch but he has gone into hiding and no one knows why. The Little Prince must find the inventor before the entire planet is wiped out so the Little Prince, some brave Creatalls and the goofy but loyal Fox set off to save it.

My favorite character is Oddzn'end, the first Creatall the Little Prince meets, because no matter what others think of him, he always tries to come up with inventions to help them.

The Little Prince: The Planet of Bubble Gob made me think about what to do to help the environment and be more aware of how to help the planet. It also showed me how important it is to help others even if you won't benefit yourself. The Little Prince helps people even when he knows he could get hurt and it's not his planet that's in trouble.

I really enjoyed the animation because it takes the story to a magical level with the creation of the planet and its oceans. It is rich and lush and made me wish the planet was real so I could go visit it.

I recommend The Little Prince: The Planet of Bubble Gob for ages 6 to 12. The Snake and the Bubble Gob are a little scary and may be alarming to younger children. I give The Little Prince: The Planet of Bubble Gob 4 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10.

The Little Prince: The Planet of Bubble Gob, directed by Pierre-Alain Chartier, is a fun and creative movie that I enjoyed, especially because of the animation.

This version of The Little Prince is about the Little Prince going to The Planet of the Bubble Gob, a planet where the people are called Creatall's because they create a lot of things. Sadly, their ocean is completely full of the useless inventions. The Master Creator creates a big trash collector (the Bubble Gob) to fix the problem, but it actually causes big waves. The Little Prince has to help to fix the problem.

The characters, the Rose, Fox and Little Prince, are from the book The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exup�ry. In this movie, the plot is different than the original book, but his friends the Rose and the Fox are included. My favorite character is the Fox because he is the only animal. He is a cute talking animal who is very feisty and just wants to get the job done so he can go eat a snack.

The animation brings a new twist and is as entertaining as the plot of the movie. The colors are especially vibrant and repeatedly draw my attention to the Fox and the settings. I found myself really wanting to look at each of the different inventions the Creatall's have made.

The animation brings the settings in the movie to life! The buildings are very unusual and are made with a lot of cool items that otherwise would have been junk. The houses are very unique because they are on poles that rise up and down to avoid the dangerously high waves of the littered ocean. Even the litter in the ocean is interesting to look at as you can see all the different colors even though you are looking down on it from the sky.

Young girls will like the character of Ilmus. She is a strong female character who is smart, works hard and doesn't give up on people. The moral behind The Little Prince is that even if you make a mistake, people will forgive you.

I rank The Little Prince: The Planet of Bubble Gob 4.5 out 5 stars. I recommend the ages 5 to 12 because there are fights in the dark with an evil snake and ghouls, which might be frightening to younger kids.

Reviewed by Mia A, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11.
Runtime: 85 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-12
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS: THE ROAD CHIP
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS: THE ROAD CHIP
TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX FILM CORPORATION Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - Through a series of misunderstandings, Alvin, Simon and Theodore come to believe that Dave is going to propose to his new girlfriend in Miami...and dump them. They have three days to get to him and stop the proposal, saving themselves not only from losing Dave but possibly from gaining a terrible stepbrother.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth reviews
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - coming soon

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

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Description - 30 years after the defeat of the Galactic Empire, a new threat rises. The First Order attempts to rule the galaxy and only a ragtag group of Heroes can stop them, along with the help of the Resistance. Directed by J.J. Abrams, Starring Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and more. Everyone knows Star Wars is a sci-fi, action franchise, but this film is very unique for the fact that it goes much deeper. With Evil getting more and more powerful, there is drama and fighting between the characters, but that doesn't stop romance from sneaking in with a little bit of comedy. Granted, I was worried it would turn into a kid's comedy, but quite a few times I found my self thinking that not only are the jokes perfect, they are also not over used! Alright, let's get to the part everyone wants to read, the plot of the most hyped, but hidden film of the decade. The events start out 20 years after what took place in Episode 6, (spoiler alert for people who didn't see episode 6). The Empire has fallen, yes, but a new Evil has risen, known as The First Order. The rebellion needs new Jedi now more than ever, but Luke (Mark Hamill) is missing and they need to find (wait for it) a new hope! Is the film worth the wait? Ever since almost a year ago, people have been talking about new Star Wars episode, and it is SO worth it. Famous directors have taken on some great challenges before, including Spielberg finishing Kubrick's AI. But J.J. Abrams took on something completely out of the ball field trying to continue Star Wars. The cinematography is spectacular, the ending shot (no spoiler) is one of the greatest endings I have ever seen in a film, and the whole story itself is unexpected and very enjoyable. Although there are many aspects that are not in the original Star Wars films, I think it is actually very nice to see Star Wars not get ruined, but go through its own evolving evolution. As for the acting, of course, the original A-Team - Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and more - are phenomenal and I think it was the perfect idea to bring these characters back for the pure enjoyment of long standing fans. However, it is really Daisy Ridley who steals the show. Her character, Rey, is so fresh and unique, full of emotion, and this character (still no spoilers, sorry) goes through so much drama in the film. It must have been a very hard role to play. Daisy gives it 110%. I predict she will be win an Oscar nomination for this role. The special effects obviously got better since the last Star Wars film in the early 2000s, and I still want to mention how breathtaking they are. Even for 2015, with all the CGI aliens, ships and spectacular space scenes, it is quite literally "eye candy." My only criticism of the film is that it is a bit too long. However, not one single scene is out of place or feels unneeded. One of my favorite scenes is when we are reunited with Hollywood's favorite space ship. Rey and Finn (John Boyega) are trying to escape The First Order. They have two options for space flight, a "piece of junk" or another space ship. Well, the space ship gets blown up and it turns out the "piece of junk" is the millennium falcon! Of course, everyone cheers, claps and whistles in the audience once the camera shows the breathtaking ship. It is not only enjoyable, and a bit funny, but the camera technique is perfect. If you want to know the rest of the story, go get your tickets and watch the film! This film is actually pretty mature. It isn't as kind as episodes 1, 2 and 3. It has its violence, so I recommend it for ages ten to eighteen. And, adults who saw previous Star Wars films and appreciate them will enjoy this film as well. I give it five out of five stars, because, even if it is a little bit boring in the middle, (it is 2 hours and 10 minutes long) J.J. Abrams, the cast and crew achieved the impossible and created a new masterpiece that can be proudly added to the Star Wars franchise. I am also glad to say that, for the first time in over 20 years, Star Wars returns! You can see Star Wars: The Force Awakens in theaters starting December 18th!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The wait is over! Star Wars: The Force Awakens opens this weekend and, the word is that you will NOT be disappointed! KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Gerry O. comments, "People have been waiting for a good Star Wars story ever since Episode VI came out 32 years ago. Fellow Star Wars fans, I am pleased to tell you, it has come." The secrecy surrounding this release has been extraordinary. Even our KIDS FIRST! Film Critics who were scheduled to attend press screenings had to pledge to secrecy the time and location and weren't allowed to even tell anyone they were going to it. You should know that the pace of this film is very fast and the action, quite intense. The original film's iconic characters played by Harrison Ford, Mark Hammill and Carrie Fisher, are back, older and even more incredible than ever. But, the new team, played by Daisy Ridley and John Boyega, definitely strike out on their own and command attention. The film is long at 135 minutes but then, so were the first ones - Episode IV (121 minutes); Episode VI (131 min.); Episode I (136 min.). Nathaniel B. (KIDS FIRST! Film Critic) adds, "Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a wonderful film that many people will love. Today's technology really makes the fantasy of Star Wars seem like reality." See our youth reporters' full reviews in the youth section.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - It is surprising that only 10 to 12 hours of films created the giant franchise we know as Star Wars. People have been waiting for a good Star Wars story ever since Episode 6 came out 32 years ago. Fellow Star Wars fans, I am pleased to tell you, it has come.

Everyone knows Star Wars is a sci-fi, action franchise, but this film is very unique for the fact that it goes much deeper. With Evil getting more and more powerful, there is drama and fighting between the characters, but that doesn't stop romance from sneaking in with a little bit of comedy. Granted, I was worried it would turn into a kid's comedy, but quite a few times I found my self thinking that not only are the jokes perfect, they are also not over used!

Alright, let's get to the part everyone wants to read, the plot of the most hyped, but hidden film of the decade. The events start out 20 years after what took place in Episode 6, (spoiler alert for people who didn't see episode 6). The Empire has fallen, yes, but a new Evil has risen, known as The First Order. The rebellion needs new Jedi now more than ever, but Luke (Mark Hamill) is missing and they need to find (wait for it) a new hope!

Is the film worth the wait? Ever since almost a year ago, people have been talking about new Star Wars episode, and it is SO worth it. Famous directors have taken on some great challenges before, including Spielberg finishing Kubrick's AI. But J.J. Abrams took on something completely out of the ball field trying to continue Star Wars. The cinematography is spectacular, the ending shot (no spoiler) is one of the greatest endings I have ever seen in a film, and the whole story itself is unexpected and very enjoyable. Although there are many aspects that are not in the original Star Wars films, I think it is actually very nice to see Star Wars not get ruined, but go through its own evolving evolution.

As for the acting, of course, the original A-Team - Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and more - are phenomenal and I think it was the perfect idea to bring these characters back for the pure enjoyment of long standing fans. However, it is really Daisy Ridley who steals the show. Her character, Rey, is so fresh and unique, full of emotion, and this character (still no spoilers, sorry) goes through so much drama in the film. It must have been a very hard role to play. Daisy gives it 110%. I predict she will be win an Oscar nomination for this role.

The special effects obviously got better since the last Star Wars film in the early 2000s, and I still want to mention how breathtaking they are. Even for 2015, with all the CGI aliens, ships and spectacular space scenes, it is quite literally "eye candy." My only criticism of the film is that it is a bit too long. However, not one single scene is out of place or feels unneeded.

One of my favorite scenes is when we are reunited with Hollywood's favorite space ship. Rey and Finn (John Boyega) are trying to escape The First Order. They have two options for space flight, a "piece of junk" or another space ship. Well, the space ship gets blown up and it turns out the "piece of junk" is the millennium falcon! Of course, everyone cheers, claps and whistles in the audience once the camera shows the breathtaking ship. It is not only enjoyable, and a bit funny, but the camera technique is perfect. If you want to know the rest of the story, go get your tickets and watch the film!

This film is actually pretty mature. It isn't as kind as episodes 1, 2 and 3. It has its violence, so I recommend it for ages ten to eighteen. And, adults who saw previous Star Wars films and appreciate them will enjoy this film as well. I give it five out of five stars, because, even if it is a little bit boring in the middle, (it is 2 hours and 10 minutes long) J.J. Abrams, the cast and crew achieved the impossible and created a new masterpiece that can be proudly added to the Star Wars franchise. I am also glad to say that, for the first time in over 20 years, Star Wars returns! You can see Star Wars: The Force Awakens in theaters starting December 18th!

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

Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a wonderful film that many people will love. Today's technology really makes the fantasy of Star Wars seem like reality. The scenery is great from the beginning to the end. The forests are vast and really fit the movie wonderfully. The beautiful stars, planets and, even the spaceships, are amazingly real looking.

The storyline It tells what happens after peace was established in the galaxy at the end of Episode 6, but now it's more than 30 years later and there is no longer peace.

The actors lured me into believing everything is really happening. Daisy Ridley as Rey shows emotion and strength. John Boyega portrays Finn as a man who starts out being afraid but must overcome his fears. And Adam Driver is excellent playing Kylo Ren, the new bad guy who tries to live up to the evil of Darth Vader and does many foolish things in the process. Each characters enliven the new story. Also, Star Wars fans of all ages will love reconnecting with characters from the original films.

The costumes are great and fit the characters in many ways. Rey's costume, a rugged suit for the desert planet Jakku, shows that she is resourceful and can take care of herself. The unusual and cool costumes fit in well with the previous films in the series.

Many strange creatures add the element of being on other worlds. I really enjoyed seeing all the extra characters in each scene like pirates, gangs and a variety of aliens. A fun new sidekick is BB-8, a feisty round astromech droid that belongs to the rebellion.

The buildings look real and at the same time like they belong in Star Wars. The props, such as blasters and space ships, are also realistic. They are grungy and look like they have seen some use. The only things I didn't like were the Stormtrooper's blasters and armor which looked plastic and fake.

The special effects are wonderful from lightsabers to explosions and lasers from the guns. They are a huge part in the film and bring the movie to life.

I do love this film but some parts of it are not quite the way I expected. There are not many breaks from battles and there's so much action that it feels intense and rushed.

This film is best for ages 7 to 18 because of the intensity of the action. I give this movie 4 1/2 out of 5 stars. It will definitely awaken the Star Wars fan in everyone.

Reviewed by Nathaniel B. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9.

After months and years of waiting for the next installment of the epic movie series Star Wars, it finally arrived as the seventh movie in the franchise. Star Wars: The Force Awakens is here! The film is set some time after the events of Episode 6 (Return of the Jedi) featuring a mixture of new characters (Finn, Rey, Kylo Ren, Poe Dameron) and many of the beloved characters from the original trilogy (Han Solo, Chewbacca, Leia Organa, Luke Skywalker).

The film begins with the premise that Luke Skywalker has gone into hiding and no one knows where he is. From the ashes of the fallen Empire comes the rise of a new evil army called The First Order. Led by the powerful Kylo Ren, The First Order searches the galaxy trying to find Luke and destroy the Rebellion. Meanwhile, a Stormtrooper runs into Poe Dameron (a pilot) who gives him the name Finn and, along the way, bumps into Rey and a new droid named BB-8.

To say that The Force Awakens excels in transitioning into the new a Star Wars series is an understatement. The characters from each series mesh incredibly well together, as if they were all apart from the same series. Director J.J. Abrams has outdone himself again in creating multi-layered characters who are interesting to watch. Even a dark character like Kylo Ren is perplexing to watch just because of his motives and the way he reacts to certain situations.

From a visual standpoint, Star Wars fans will be happy to know that there is just enough CGI that it will not look old like the original trilogy but that there are enough real effects so that it will not look like a bunch of added stuff like the prequels. On the technical side, the only aspect I found unappealing was the music. It felt like the music was just pasted in there and that there was little connection between the score and the scene. In the action sequences, I was in awe of every scene. Even an outsider, someone who has never seen Star Wars, can appreciate the action scenes in this movie, especially the lightsaber battle. The battle seems like an actual fight, in that the attacks are rough and it do not seem like much of it is choreographed.

In the end, as a Star Wars fan, I am very much impressed by how well The Force Awakens is executed. If you have never seen Star Wars before, it may be a little bit tough to sink your teeth into but the experience is still great. If you are a fan, you are in for an absolute treat. I give Star Wars: The Force Awakens 5 Stormtrooper heads out of 5 because of the riveting story, remarkable characters, spectacular effects and, most of all, for living up to the hype.

Reviewed by Brandon Cela, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16.

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


DINOTRUX
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DINOTRUX
NETFLIX
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 2-5
Description - Welcome to a world of giant creatures that are half dinosaur, half truck. Meet Ty Rux, a massive Tyrannosaurus Trux, and his best friend Revvit, a razor-sharp Reptool. Different species join forces for the first time ever to build a bigger, better world and battle back against the biggest and baddest of all: D-Structs, who threatens to wreck everything they've built.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Although this has a slightly slow take off in the first show, it packs some meaningful important messages for young children. The characters are fun and entertaining and the message of friendship and teamwork is a strong focus of the three shows in the first season. Yes, there is a bully in the first show and he doesn't exactly become a friend but it does teach that teamwork, friendship and sticking together can win. I like that it also shows that it is good to make friends with those who are different than you and I believe this is an important lesson for children of all ages to learn. As most of us know, we aren't born hating those who are different than ourselves. It is, in fact, something that is learned. This series has entertaining value and meaningful social lessons and I highly recommend it. I give it 4 stars and recommend for ages 4 to 9.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Dinotrux is about trucks that are like dinosaurs. The bad guy is a dinosaur truck who is a bully and doesn't want to share and doesn't want to be friends. We learned that the good trucks stood up to the bullies. They all stood up to the bullies together. We liked the red guy and the little tiny small green guy. They are the good guys. We liked it a lot, and we want to watch it again.
Runtime: 23 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 3-6
Suggested Retail Price: $ 7.99
Media: DVD

THOMAS EDISON'S SECRET LAB: SECRET LAB MEETING
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
THOMAS EDISON'S SECRET LAB: SECRET LAB MEETING
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DVD, AGES 5-8
Description - Unknown to the world, Thomas Edison had a secret lab where he invented a virtual version of himself and a nearly-completed robot to guide and inspire future generation of young scientists.

The secret lab, Edison's virtual alter ego, and his prototype robot remained hidden until a 12-year-old prodigy cracked the secret coded message that Edison left behind.� This young genius named Angie and her science club friends move into the lab and the fun begins!� Each episode covers fun scientific topics from dinosaur fossils to minerals to gravity and so much more!� Join Angie, JD, Kent and Nicky as they work with the robot, Von Bolt, and Thomas Edison's virtual alter ego in this wacky world of scientific discovery!�
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is a very entertaining and informative way to give science lessons to young people ages 5 to 12. Thomas Edison, inventor appears as an alter ego and teaches his young potential scientists. The team includes, Angie, her brother JD, friend Rex and robot Volt Bolt. Each episode focuses on a different aspect of scientific discoveries. One episode I found very interesting was "If Fossil Fits." It gives a very good explanation of what are fossils and how they are created. Rex finds what he thinks to be a fossil of a new dinosaur. After a virtual trip back to prehistoric time, the young scientists learn that Rex's discovery is not a new dinosaur. They learn how the earth creates a fossil and make their own versions of fossils.

The entire show Lab is enjoyable and even I learned some scientific facts that I did not know. I like the way Thomas Edison appears to encourage and motivate his young prot�g�s. For example, in the "Dunkin Zombies" episode, when the young people are squabbling about how to save JD for his zombie addition to donuts, Edison reminds them "Finding solutions not pointing fingers" is the key.

I recommend this DVD to ages 5 to 12 and think adults will enjoy it as well. The film meets the baseline KIDS FIRST! criteria and is very enjoyable and entertaining. I rate it 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Juanita S., KIDS FIRST! juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I just love the animated series, Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: Secret Lab Meeting. I found myself smiling, giggling and bouncing in my seat. I actually never left the couch because science is my favorite school subject and I didn't want to miss a thing! I really like all eight fun-filled episodes that are about solving interesting scientific problems. I like the different animated characters, story line and upbeat music that make science come to life! I also absolutely love that we meet many very important scientists like Thomas Edison, Louis Pasteur and others that help the world be a better place.

Guided by a virtual Thomas Edison, each episode is packed with fascinating scientific information and vocabulary that entertain and inspire the young scientist in each of us! The Lab Team Angie, JD, Kent and Nicky jump into virtual worlds in each episode through a machine called, ALVA where they seek the advice of many important and famous scientists to solve scientific problems. The robot Von Bolt is a nice addition to the team and funny as he tries to attract a girl robot in one of the episodes. At the end of each episode a robot group, the Von Bytes, perform happy, upbeat, catchy, fun songs with pop up scientific vocabulary words used in that episode.

Elements, enzymes, fossils, fertilizers, cloning, animal behavior and even body odor are just some of the fun scientific topics we learn about in this animated series.

While there are many super fun episodes, my favorite is Dunkin' Zombies because the character JD turns into a funny green donut craving zombie after he gets infected by a virus. There are several hilarious scenes in this episode alone like zombies not liking gluten-free donuts and craving donuts instead of brains. By the end of this episode we learn how viruses spread and also how they can be cured by a vaccine. Through challenge and perseverance the lab friends with the help of Thomas Edison and Louis Pasteur defeat the virus.

The only downside to this series are first, some viewers may find the animation kind of square and simple when compared to other more sophisticated animated shows. The other downside is that it would be better for the kid voice-over roles to be actual kids so that young viewers can better connect to the kid characters. At the same time, the kid characters are quirky and you can't help but love them.

This film teaches viewers that science is not only important but fun. All the different episodes spark the imagination and, if you are not someone who likes science, you may just be by the end of this series, or at least you will have a better understanding of the world of science. Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: Secret Lab Meeting is a great educational series and an entertaining way to introduce kids to many different scientific topics. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 10.

Reviewed by Abigail Zoe L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9.

Our tour guide today is Thomas Edison. What a great person to learn science with. This movie is educational and cute. It is a fun way to learn many science facts that can normally be boring.

There are many quirky characters to guide you through each episode. I like that each one is different with a unique story line. Thomas Edison listens to the problem at hand and then guides the junior scientist to an expert from the past to help them solve problems. We see Zombies who eat donuts. Learn what happens when a robot is too smart and you have no chemistry. And, how to determine if you a real fossil. All your problems are solved with science. This DVD contains eight episodes.

One of my favorite is Zero Chemistry. It is hilarious. No matter what Von Bolt, the ever helpful robot, does he cannot make another robot like him. Now I know what makes people like each other or at least one of the many reasons some people are attracted to other people.

The animation is pretty old style. I know that a lot of work went into making this film but, it is somewhat hard to watch because the graphics don't compare with those of today that are so amazing. It is definitely not as advanced as the newer cartoons we typically see today. I think that with better graphics it might reach a larger audience.

The voiceovers are somewhat hit and miss. Some of them are simply annoying. It sounds as if adults are doing the children's voices. Many sound too high pitched to be actual kids.

I do love the concept of learning science through watching an animated show. It makes it interesting and fun. Having a visual aid is a big help to remember facts. I can visualize the cartoon and remember the answers to questions and the scientist who studied a specific problem. This video makes learning science easier.

The videos are all followed by a music video which is easy to remember and to sing-a-along to. Scientific words pop up during the video so you can see the spelling and have another resource to help you remember.

I give this DVD four out of five stars and I recommend this DVD for ages 5 to 14. The cartoons will keep younger ones interested. The learning of science and big words will keep older ones paying attention because they will learn a lot and remember what they learned, thanks to the animations. Since it is split up into eight separate episodes you can watch one or all of them at once.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 90 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-11
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: DVD


MIKE THE KNIGHT: MIKE�S BRAVEST MISSION
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MIKE THE KNIGHT: MIKE�S BRAVEST MISSION
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 2-5
Description - BRAND NEW Christmas Special!! When a special visitor surprises Mike for Christmas, excitement fills the air. The royal family decides to play a game, but Evie's magic causes Christmas chaos. Will everything be back to normal in time for the Christmas feast? Mike's merry missions include giant snowballs, slippery sled rides, a sneezing reindeer, and a visit with Santa Claus! Celebrate the season with Mike the Knight, and unwrap the ho-ho-holiday fun!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Mike the Knight, Mike's Bravest Mission, is an entertaining DVD that my kids have enjoyed watching over and over again. Mike is trying to solve the famous Knight's Puzzle, with the help of his friends. But the evil Edward is trying to steal the puzzle and solve it for himself because the legend says whoever solves it will have a great adventure. The characters are endearing, and there are many lessons about teamwork, friendship, mystery-solving, etc. There are several adorable songs throughout the show to make it even more fun. There are even some cute music video bonus features. I highly recommend this DVD to any Mike the Knight fans or any kids from about ages two through eight.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like that Mike is very brave and confident. This program shows kids how to be confident in themselves and encourages them to believe you can do anything when you put your mind to it. I like how Mike doesn't cheat and always plays fair. That is a great lesson that Mike shows you throughout the film.

Meet Mike, voiced by Trek Buccino, a knight in training who dreams of being a brave knight like his father when he grows up. His father, the King, is a knight who is away exploring other lands. Looking up to his father, Mike wants to learn to become a knight too. However, he is still in training. With his two dragon friends, Sparkie and Squirt, his sister, Evie, who is a witch-in-training and his horse, Galahad, Mike tries to be the bravest knight of all.

When his mom and dad think he's prepared, they put him on a quest to solve the "Knight's Puzzle" to see if he is ready to be a knight. Mike goes along on this journey with his friend, Richard to complete his mission. Can Mike complete the quest?

My favorite characters are Mike and Evie. Evie is one of my favorites because, unfortunately for her, her magic always goes wrong and it leads to disastrous but hilarious effects. Even though her spells go wrong she keeps persisting and never gives up. Mike is another one of my favorites because he also never gives up on the idea of becoming a knight. You see his persistence throughout the entire film which is a great message for kids to see - If you want to accomplish something, never give up and keep trying.

What I didn't like about this show is that it has very little humor. Also, this show wasn't very entertaining for me as an 11-year-old. But, keep in mind that this movie is perfect for little kids. I recommend it for ages 5 to 8 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. I also recommend it to people who like action, adventure, family and kids films. The DVD has some trailers of other Mike the Knight DVDs and The Doozers DVD. It also offers bonus features where you can meet the characters or do karaoke to the theme song. That's sort of fun!

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

Knights, wizards, kings, dragons and more will put a smile on your face! The planes make me want to jump in and take a ride. The animation is colorful and has great details. The many action adventure scenes are spot on and flawless. The animation is so detailed that it is just mind-blowing.

At first I thought the film was just for little boys but after watching it, I think that little girls will love it too. The animals and the girl wizard will definitely be some kids' favorites. The wizard is cute and, since she is still learning, this leads to many mistakes and funny moments. The story line includes a treasure hunt and a mystery which will capture your attention. The two story lines flow together into a fun, family-friendly, animation adventure.

The movie has great relationships between father and son. You can see all the similar qualities they share, both good and bad. The voice actors are quite wonderful and the emotions between the characters really come across. The characters show what true friends really do for each other.

The characters are adorable and the voice over work matches well with the individual characters. They are all cute and quirky. My favorites are the dragons which are surprisingly kind, not your usual breed of fire breathing beasts that want to eat or barbeque you.

The villains have a beast of their own which terrifies them. I really wanted to like them because they are funny and made me laugh. However, they are not nice and think that everything is theirs.

Mike the Knight: Mikes Bravest Mission teaches us to never give up. If you try and fail maybe you should look at the problem another way and try something different. No matter what, you should always keep trying and eventually it will all work out.

This new DVD by N Circle Entertainment is perfect for kids ages 4 to 18.The colorful movie will keep little ones entertained and older kids will love the story line.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11.
Runtime: 60 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-5
Suggested Retail Price: $ 7.99
Media: DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


LEGO DIMENSIONS
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LEGO DIMENSIONS
WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: VIDEOGAME, AGES 5-18
Description - The all-new collection merges physical LEGO brick building and interactive console gameplay. Includes the videogame, bricks to build the LEGO Gateway, three LEGO Minifigures, Batman, Gandalf and Wyldstyle, plus the LEGO Batmobile, and the LEGO Toy Pad, which allows players to transport special LEGO minifigures and models into the game, as well as direct in-game action all with the movement of the physical toys.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I really enjoyed playing LEGO Dimensions for PlayStation 3. In this game, you must stop Lord Vortex from taking over the world. You can play as any character and there are many to choose from. In the starter pack, there is Batman (from the LEGO Batman series not Batman from the LEGO movie), Wildstyle and Gandalf, from Lord of the Rings.

Something I really enjoyed in LEGO Dimensions is the toy pad. I love how it's really interactive and glows while you are playing the game. You have to actually build the components with the LEGO pieces that are provided in the starter pack and then you can use them in the game. (You can't build a car with your own regular LEGO and put it in the game because it only works with the LEGOs that are provided.)

Something I didn't like were instructions for building characters and vehicles. The manuals are in the starter pack, but if you buy a different character like Wonder Woman, they are no physical manuals for new characters to show you how to put them together. They are available only through the game. Other than that, I really loved the game.

My favorite part of the game is that you can visit a bunch of different worlds. For example, you can visit the DC Universe World or the Simpsons World. My favorite character is Gandalf because I love how this character can hit items from faraway places.

The Starter Pack also includes a poster with all the worlds and characters that are available for you to purchase when you want to expand from the starter pack.

I recommend this for kids ages 7 to 14. I also recommend this to people who like LEGOs, action and adventure, and family games. I give this game 5 out of 5 amazing stars. LEGO Dimensions is available now for most video consoles.

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

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 99.99
Media: Videogame


CREED
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
CREED
WARNER BROS. PICTURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - The former World Heavyweight Champion Rocky Balboa serves as a trainer and mentor to Adonis Johnson, the son of his late friend and former rival Apollo Creed.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - From start to finish, this film does homage to Rocky Balboa in a masterful execution. Adonis Johnson is the son of the famous boxing champion Apollo Creed, who died in a boxing match in Rocky IV (1985). Adonis wasn't born until after his father's death and wants to follow his fathers footsteps in boxing. He seeks a mentor who is the former heavyweight boxing champion and former friend of Apollo Creed, the retired Rocky Balboa. Rocky eventually agrees to mentor Adonis and the rest is history. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Harmony M. comments, "Creed is delightfully entertaining and beautifully developed...The film starts out amazingly entertaining and engaging within the first few minutes." Tre'ana H. adds, "Creed is a film that sucks you right in, especially when you see a young child in the justice system... I like this film because Adonis Johnson, the protagonist (Michael B. Jordan) is self determined to fulfill his dream." See their full reviews in our youth comments section.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Creed is delightfully entertaining and beautifully developed. The film brings the iconic Rocky Balboa back to life after about 40 years. The film is about the son of famous boxer Apollo Creed whose path leads him to a passionate desire to box. Upon finding out that he actually had a father who is, in fact, Apollo Creed, he goes to the only person that can help train him to live up to his father's name. That person is Rocky Balboa.

The film starts out amazingly entertaining and engaging within the first few minutes. The movie starts by showing us the kid's moral background which is really refreshing considering that most movies overstretch the beginning and bore their audience with "when is the movie really going to start?" That alone really establishes the film's great quality because it develops by showing, not telling and captures the audience immediately with the background information without needing a long introduction to describe it.

Spin-off movies are quite risky. The original film has already set expectations and often, spin-offs can ruin the original film for people. Director Ryan Coogler directs this spin-off of Rocky, leaving all the fans content with the continued legacy. Ryan Coogler beautifully creates a funny, emotional and inspiring film full of amazing qualities.

The acting by Sylvester Stallone and Michael B. Jordan is brilliant and natural, making me feel connected to their characters fairly quickly. The makeup department includes special effects makeup artist Leo Corey Castellano who creates amazingly realistic boxing wounds. It is so realistic that it is the first vivid visual that comes to my mind when I think about that film.

I am personally not a fan of sports movies but I definitely recommend this film to people of all interests because the story is so touching. The story and moral messages revolve around the idea that "your legacy is more than your name." The movie demonstrates how hard work and determination to fulfill your passion can create exactly the legacy you so desire. You can be the legend you want to be.

I recommend this film for kids age 13 to 18. I do not recommend this for children under the age of 13 due to disturbing visuals, sexual actions and violent behavior. I give this film a 4.5 out of 5 stars. It is in theaters now so, be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Harmony M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17.

Creed is a film that sucks you right in, especially when you see a young child in the justice system. It makes you wonder why? Where is the parent? I like this film because Adonis Johnson, the protagonist (Michael B. Jordan) is self determined to fulfill his dream. I connected with him because I can relate to his desire to fulfill and accomplish a goal. The film is a blend of drama, thriller, sports and romance. The director, Ryan Coogler ties this film to Philadelphia which is known as the City of Brotherly Love and known as the home of the other Rocky Balboa movies. I like the how he draws in Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) in this film and the relationship he develops with Adonis throughout all the twists and turns in the script. He creates a suspenseful filled film that leads up to the ending.

This film takes place in Philadelphia where former World Heavyweight Champion Rocky Balboa serves as a trainer and mentor to Adonis Johnson. He is the son of his late friend and former rival Apollo Creed. His step-mother Mary Anne Creed (Phylicia Rashad) visits him in the juvenile detention center and offers him a prominent life to with a promising future. Does Adonis Johnson disappoint her? I can't say any more. It is a must see and I promise that you will not be disappointed.

My favorite part of this film is when Rocky is writing down the notes for Adonis to improve his training. When he finishes the notes Adonis takes a picture of it on his phone and as he walks away, Rocky points out that he left the notes. He tells Rocky that he's got it on his phone and Rocky asks, "What if your phone breaks?" Adonis says, "It's saved in the cloud!" Rocky really thinks he means a real cloud in the sky and looks up. It is so hilarious because Adonis is, of course, talking about the cyber cloud. The whole entire audience laughs out loud.

The message of the film is stay determined to fulfill your dreams and don't never give up.

I recommend this film for ages 13 to 18 and give it 5 out of 5 stars because it is an excellent film to watch and you will definitely find it entertaining, especially those peo9ple from my hometown city of Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love.

This movie is in theaters now so, go check it out.

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


WIDOWER, THE
PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: TV SERIES, ADULT
Description - Malcolm Webster (Reece Shearsmith) is, on the surface, a perfect British gentleman. Well-spoken, personable, and oozing with charm, he marries his first wife, Claire Morris (Sheridan Smith), in 1993. However, a year after her dream wedding, Claire is dead the apparent victim of a tragic road accident. Four years later, a broke Webster starts anew in New Zealand with his second wife, Felicity, who helps him to find love again. But on their wedding night she feels groggy, and for the next year suffers from unexplained blackouts.

This chilling true story tells how Felicity pieces small clues together before finally realizing that the death of Webster's first wife might not have been an accident. After Malcolm disappears and resurfaces in Scotland, Felicity begins a desperate race against time to try and convince a Scottish detective (John Hannah) her husband is in fact a cold-blooded killer already lining up wife number three.
Runtime: 180 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 18-adult
Suggested Retail Price: $ 20.99
Media: Video and DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


GAMEPLAY
PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - Featuring interviews with video game pioneers including Nolan Bushnell (the founder of Atari), David Crane (the co-founder of Activision), Noah Falstein (Chief Game Designer at Google), John Romero (the founder of ID Software), Todd Howard (director of Fallout 4), and many others, the film is a compendium of all of the groundbreaking games of the past 40 years, and includes original animation and iconic graphics. From Pong to Pac Man, Super Mario to Lara Croft, Doom, Grand Theft Auto and beyond, this film tells the remarkable story of the fastest-evolving new media of all time.
Runtime: 94 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $ 24.99
Media: DVD

VICTOR FRANKENSTEIN
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
VICTOR FRANKENSTEIN
TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX FILM CORPORATION Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - Told from Igor's perspective, we see the troubled young assistant's dark origins, his redemptive friendship with the young medical student Viktor Von Frankenstein, and become eyewitnesses to the emergence of how Frankenstein became the man - and the legend - we know today.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - See youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This phenomenal live action feature film, directed by Paul McGuigan, is jaw-dropping! I love this movie because it is an entertaining, action-packed bromance!

I know you've all probably heard of the typical Frankenstein story where a mad scientist creates a monster. Instead of focusing only on Frankenstein and his ghastly creation, this rendition tells the story from the vantage of Doctor Frankenstein's sidekick, Igor Strausman (Daniel Radcliffe).

Set in London in the early 1900's, a hunchbacked clown is destined to live his life nameless and mistreated as a circus freak of nature. The clown is hopelessly in love with Lorelei, the beautiful and kindhearted trapeze artist played by Jessica Brown Findlay. After her horrific fall, the clown uses his extraordinary knowledge of the human body to save Loralie's life. Victor Frankenstein, a gifted surgeon (James McAvoy), notices his medical expertise and rescues him from the abusive circus.

The clown is later given the name of Igor Strausman. Frankenstein helps correct Igor's posture though a very painful and sinister process. Later, the two become extraordinary friends and partners, combining their scientific knowledge and medical expertise to create life out of something that is already dead.

A major subplot involves Roderick Turpin (Andrew Scott), a Scotland Yard investigator who religiously opposes Doctor Frankenstein's work. He is willing to do anything in his power to stop Frankenstein from going against what he believes is God's will.

My favorite scene is when Dr. Frankenstein and Igor are trying to fight off the monster they have miraculously created. This scene involves crazy special effects and will truly leave you hanging on the edge of your seat.

My favorite character, by far, is Igor. Daniel Radcliffe plays him as very loving and compassionate. He finds and loses himself in the complexities of his relationship with Victor. Lorelei helps to keep Igor grounded and is there to guide him.

I give Victor Frankenstein 5 out of 5 stars because it is not only unpredictable but also has impressive performances by the main characters. This science fiction drama is one of my favorite film versions regarding the story of Dr. Frankenstein. This is a really cool rendition and I recommend this movie for ages 11 to 18 because it is intense and is a little scary at times.

This movie leaves you on the edge of your seat rooting for Igor. Victor Frankenstein is in theaters now so go check it out!

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

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


NURSERY RHYME PARADE!
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
NURSERY RHYME PARADE!
XXX
Series: AUDIO CD FOR AGES 2-5
Description - This new album, exclusive to Amazon, presents 35 familiar nursery rhymes and songs, collected from hundreds of possibilities in the children's canon. These fresh and sparely produced tracks provide the perfect opportunity for parents to remember their own childhoods, and to connect with their kids through melody, rhythm and rhyme. Acclaimed children's book and magazine illustrator Ekaterina Truhan created the sprightly animal parade art for the album, which also features a "selfie" image of Lisa Loeb on the front cover, and noted singer Renee Stahl guests.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Nursery rhymes have been around for hundreds of years and many of the characters are based on real historical figures. Babies don't really care about that but they love the repetitive lyrics and easy to sing melodies especially when loved ones are bonding with them. Lisa Loeb has assembled the definitive collection of 36 familiar nursery rhymes with simple yet sturdy production that accents her lovely distinctive voice, delivers a compelling album that will favor many repeated listenings and join the lexicon of evergreen children's music.

These songs will stick and be passed on to future generations just as we learned them. The performances are first rate across the board. Some language is antiquated but it doesn't matter. The fun is the repetition. i.e.. Row, Row Row Your Boat. The songs are intended for the target age group and their parents who share them. The quality is consistently good. There is a simple structure of voices, percussion and guitar. Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Music Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - We liked this CD. It was fun. We liked the music. Our favorite songs were Humpty Dumpty Sat on a Wall, Farmer in the Dell, and Hush Little Baby. We acted out the songs while we listened. We played with each other while we were acting out the songs. We knew some of the songs already. We have a giant book of all the rhymes that Mother Goose made. It was fun acting out the rhymes. We liked the singing. We want to listen to it again another time. Reviewed by KIDS FIRST! preschool jurors.
Runtime: 30 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-5
Suggested Retail Price: $ 10
Media: AUDIO
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


GOOD DINOSAUR, THE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
GOOD DINOSAUR, THE
WALT DISNEY ANIMATED STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 4-12
Description - "The Good Dinosaur" asks the question: What if the asteroid that forever changed life on Earth missed the planet completely and giant dinosaurs never became extinct? In this epic journey into the world of dinosaurs, an Apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend. While traveling through a harsh and mysterious landscape, Arlo learns the power of confronting his fears and discovers what he is truly capable of.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Good Dinosaur, which opens this weekend, asks the question: What if the asteroid that forever changed life on Earth missed the planet completely and giant dinosaurs never became extinct? In this epic journey into the world of dinosaurs, an Apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend and learns the power of confronting his fears and discovers what he is truly capable of. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Ryan R. (age 11) comments, "I like how it touches our emotions and admit that it made me cry in some parts. I also liked the jokes because they are really funny." Willie J. (age 16) adds, "It is some of the most beautiful animation I've seen with a story so familiar that its heartwarming qualities hit home." See their full reviews below.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I find it strange that Pixar has released two films in the same year. Especially considering that Inside Out has been locked for every Animated Feature award since it was released. It's almost unfair because, The Good Dinosaur is a very good film that, I'm afraid will get lost in the shadow of its all too recent predecessor. Despite such lofty competition, The Good Dinosaur, in just about any other year, would be a great candidate for Best Animated Feature. It is some of the most beautiful animation I've seen with a story so familiar that its heartwarming qualities hit home.

The story is something we've seen many times before in both animated films and live action ones. It is the story of the young boy who's too afraid to live life and has to be shown the world to overcome his fears. Throw in some family death and comic relief friends and you could write the rest yourself. Luckily, this movie features great relational bonding between our protagonist, Arlo, and his young friend Spot. They start out not liking each other and, by the end they're nearly inseparable. It is a relationship that develops with humor and a sweetness that brings tears to the eye.�

That young boy, Spot, is portrayed as a dog actually. That is a part of an interesting dynamic with this movie. The dinosaurs are like people, and the young cave boy plays the pet. He even has a pet name. It adds to the humor of the film and it is full of humor. The opening joke, in which the film plays with the audience and threatens a meteor strike on earth, sets the tone of the film. There are other laughs and, they are laugh out loud laughs at that.

The most impressive part of the movie is the animation. I'd almost call it cinematography, that's how beautiful it was. There is actually a point in the movie I thought J.J Abrams was directing, because there are some beautiful lens flares in there. Lens flares. That's how intricate the animation is and how true to its environment it is. Very good direction!

Unfortunately, the familiar story limits how good this film really can be. Considering that, there isn't anything groundbreaking. There is even an homage to The Lion King included.�

For these reasons, I give this film 4 out of 5 stars. It is a fantastic family film and one I highly recommend. Kids ages 7 to 18 should really enjoy this.�

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

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

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

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

The moral lesson in this movie is you can discover what you're truly capable of if you are willing to face your fears. Arlo proves that in this movie.

I give this film 5 out of 5 amazing stars and recommend it for kids ages 5 to 18. Adults might like this as well. I also recommend this to kids who like family, action, adventure, drama, comedies, dinosaurs and Disney movies. This movie comes out November 25 so, mark your calendar!

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

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-12
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


HUNGER GAMES, THE: MOCKINGJAY - PART 2
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
HUNGER GAMES, THE: MOCKINGJAY - PART 2
LIONSGATE FILMS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - As the war of Panem escalates to the destruction of other districts by the Capitol, Katniss Everdeen, the reluctant leader of the rebellion, must bring together an army against President Snow, while all she holds dear hangs in the balance. Directed by Francis Lawrence, Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Donald Sutherland, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Julianne Moore, Willow Shields and more
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 is surprisingly more creative and suspenseful than all the prior films in the franchise. However, there are a couple of things about the film that are not fantastic. I don't think that Jennifer Lawrence does a great job in this film. It seems as if she was asleep throughout the movie. This film again stars Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen and Josh Hucherson as Peeta Mellark. They are supported by Julianne Moore, Woody Harrelson, Donald Sutherland and Phillip Seymour Hoffman. The film is directed by Francis Lawrence, who directed all the Hunger Games films except the first. At the beginning of the film, Katniss is recruited by Commander Coin (Julianne Moore) to lead the rebellion. They really want her to be the "face" of the rebellion and film fake skirmishes for the ever present media. Katniss plays along but her intent is to assassinate President Snow. Snow is ready for the rebellion. His generals plant POD traps (obstacles designed to release a weapon that can range from a bomb to a group of mutts) all over the Capital, which are motion sensitive. When someone comes near, flame throwers engulf them or huge machine guns appear and blow them up. The PODS are planted every few feet, so it is a deadly obstacle course for the rebels to try to make it through into the heart of the Capital. In the face of all this, Peeta, who had been psychologically tortured and brain-washed by Snow in Part 1, is now ordered to join Katniss on this mission. But, he is unstable and doesn't have a grip on reality.

The best part of this film is the ending, which I can't tell you about because of spoiler alert. But, rest assured, it is a great ending. The middle of the film is very action-packed, scary and suspenseful. Katniss, and the rebel force work their way through the PODS. I love this part of the film and the locations that were chosen. At one point, the rebel force goes down into the sewers to escape detection, adding a bit of horror to the action film setting. The supporting cast is great, especially Julianne Moore, who plays Commander Coin with great conviction.

The screenplay is interesting, especially the dialogue between Katniss and Peeta. Peeta keeps asking Katniss and the others if things are "real or not real" since he has a tenuous grip on reality, due to his brain-washing. I also like the song that plays during the end credits.

Unfortunately, there are some drawbacks to the film besides Jennifer Lawrence's performance. I feel that some of the fight sequences are not realistic. One last point I would like to make is that the uniqueness of The Hunger Games is the idea of the games themselves. There are no games in this film and I miss he whole survivalist concept of that.

Overall, I think this film is a great ending to The Hunger Games franchise. I give the film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 11 to 18, keeping in mind that there are some rather violent, scary scenes in the middle of the movie. This film opens November 20.

Reviewed by Clayton P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 1

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


LOVE THE COOPERS
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LOVE THE COOPERS
CBS - LA Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - When four generations of the Cooper clan come together for their annual Christmas Eve celebration, a series of unexpected visitors and unlikely events turn the night upside down, leading them all toward a surprising rediscovery of family bonds and the spirit of the holiday. Starring Diane Keaton, John Goodman, Ed Helms, Alan Arkin, Marisa Tomei and more
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I saw this with my husband and daughter in law and we all just howled. It reminds me of a Nora Ephron film with all the family and personal drama going on. There is a bit of profanity and sexuality so I wouldn't take your younger kids but, for teens it's a go.

It has a great ensemble cast, each with his or her own personal drama going on. Diane Keaton and John Goodman (who has lost a ton of weight and looks great) make a very believable couple whose kids and grandkids are all slightly off kilter. Steve Martin, who narrates the film through the eyes of the family dog, is a delight. And, the love story between Angie and Sergeant is one of the highlights of the film. "I never believed in love at first sight until now."

As Leo Tolstoy said, "All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." But, you might just see an element of your own family in this film.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Love the Coopers directed by Jessie Nelson is a holiday comedy full of subplots that get many of the people in the audience laughing. This movie is packed with big stars such as John Goodman, Diane Keaton, Alan Arkin, Marisa Tomei and Amanda Seyfried.

This movie is about an extended family, the Coopers who come together every Christmas and have a big family dinner party. It's about their individual lives and how their family acts when they are together.

My two favorite characters are Joe and Eleanor, played by Jake Lacy and Olivia Wilde, because they have great chemistry together and I kept rooting for them to finally become a couple. Their story provides the most humor and is the strongest subplot in the whole movie. Their scenes are hilarious and made me really believe they should be a couple.

There are many great actors in Love the Coopers, and there are some flaws. Charlotte and Emma are supposed to be sisters with negative history and competition, but the age difference between Diane Keaton and Marisa Tomei (who play them) is too great to be believable. It doesn't make sense. Also, I was disappointed that some of the big stars aren't used to their full potential. For example, Amanda Seyfried, a great actress from Mamma Mia isn't in a lot of scenes and Steve Martin is used only as the narrator. This left me wanting more.

I found the plot and characters a little hard to follow in the very beginning. It's difficult to know who is who because they switch back-and-forth from different family members without telling us who they are.

Every set and scene reminds us that it is Christmas, including the funny, the good and the bad aspects. It gently pokes fun of holiday traditions and made me wonder about some of my own.

I rate Love the Coopers 3.5 out of 5 stars because I enjoyed the clever writing, but I didn't really relate to the sisters or to some of the inappropriate humor.

I recommend it to ages 12 to 18 because there is some extreme kissing and inappropriate public behavior. They also tell some religious jokes about Christians and they use some mild profanity. This film is in theaters now so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Mia A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

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


SNOWMAN, THE & THE SNOWMAN AND THE SNOWDOG
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SNOWMAN, THE & THE SNOWMAN AND THE SNOWDOG
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - Two films are included in this package: The Snowman - Wordless (save for the song "Walking in the Air") animated adventure about a young English boy who makes a snowman one Christmas Eve, only for it to come to life that night and take him on a magical adventure to the North Pole to meet Santa Claus. And, The Snowman and the Snowdog - The brand new charming sequel to the Christmas classic the Snowman about a young boy whose dog has just died moves into the house in whose backyard the snowman was built. Finding a photograph of the snowman the boy rebuilds him, fashioning a snow dog out of the excess snow. The trio fly off in a plane to meet Santa, who gives the boy a magical dog collar which will make it the happiest Christmas ever for him.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Snowman is one of my all-time favorite pieces of animation. Directed by Dianne Jackson and produced by Jonathan Coates, this non-narrative film truly is filled with wonder. The haunting music by Howard Blake ("Walking in the Air") stays with me for days after each time I watch this film. And, I mean that in a good way. Based on the best-selling book by Raymond Briggs, this is a piece of animation that is true to the original story and one to share with your family during the holiday season.

N Circle Entertainment has done a brilliant thing in creating this two DVD pack and including the sequel to this classic film, The Snowman and Snowdog which was created to mark the 30th anniversary of the original. Another non-narrative film, this one brings in a new character in a short film that is as charming as the original. Dedicated to John Coates and featuring a new song, "Light the Night" by former Razorlight drummer Andy Burrows, this is an extremely thoughtful sequel and was made using traditional hand-drawn animation, not CGI. This collection is really a treasure! Reviewed by Sarah S., KIDS FIRST! Juror

These movies are instant classics that bring out the feeling of Christmas Spirit. The first thing you notice is the beautiful animation. The next is the story which is wholesome and great for the whole family. The Snowman is about a boy whom builds a snowman and when that snowman comes to life they embark on a lovely adventure to the North Pole. Similarly, the sequel is about a boy building a snowman and a Snowdog that both come to life. I highly recommend these two short films and recommend them for ages 2 to 9. I also believe some older children and adults will like it as well. I give these 5 out of 5 stars! Happy Holidays!

Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Snowman and The Snowman and The Snow Dog is a double feature masterpiece that will bring families closer together for the holidays. The two short films are based on the classic UK picture book by Raymond Briggs, which has sold more than 8.5 million copies since it was first published in 1978. This double feature collector's edition is a true keepsake that includes the original film, The Snowman and the sequel, The Snowman and the Snow Dog. It also includes three bonus features: The story of The Snowman, an alternate introduction from David Bowie, and a behind-the-scenes documentary and interview with Raymond Briggs. The total length of the two films is 60 minutes, plus the bonus content.

In The Snowman, a young boy James wakes up one morning and finds snow on the ground. He quickly gets dressed and runs outside. He then builds a huge snowman. He gives it eyes, a nose, a scarf and a hat. He even gives it a big smiley face. After building the entire snowman by himself, it is time for James to go to bed. When he wakes up he notices that the Snowman has moved a little, so he runs downstairs and out the door. He then notices that the Snowman is glowing, moves some more and then, totally comes to life. James is flabbergasted to see a live Snowman. The Snowman and James introduce themselves and become great friends. The rest the film shows the two flying around having so much fun and adventure throughout the day.

In The Snowman and the Snow Dog, a young boy and his mother move to a new house. The boy finds a box with a snowman-making kit under the flooring. He then runs outside and starts to build a snowman. After he is done, he uses all the leftover snow to make a little, adorable snow dog. When he is finished, it is time to go to bed. When he wakes up he sees the dog move a little, he then jumps with joy and races down the stairs to see what is happening. To his surprise, the snowman and the snow dog start to glow and move. Even more to his surprise, they come alive. He then becomes friends with them and they travel and have adventures all around the North Pole and meet a special someone.

The Snowman book was adapted for the screen in 1982. It was nominated for an Academy Award for best animated short film. The animation of the drawings is just amazing, bringing to lire so many memories from the days of movie shorts. The silence in the film, meaning that there is no dialogue, makes it even more beautiful and old fashioned. The music by Howard Blake, Peter Auty and the Sinfonia of London is amazing. It fits perfectly with everything the boy and the snowman are doing at given times. Each song tells a story, with each pluck of a string or push of a piano key. The songs in the movie are also catchy and addicting to sing along with. I am sixteen and I sung along with the songs!

The Snowman is directed by Dianne Jackson and produced by John Coates. This extravagant film has a little touch of magic which will keep you on your toes with excitement.

The Snowman and The Snowman and The Snow Dog are appropriate for ages 1 to 12. I rate this whimsical double-feature 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Clayton P, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Runtime: 50 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Video and DVD


BIRD AND RHINO BY THE POP UPS
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
BIRD AND RHINO BY THE POP UPS
THE POP UPS
Series: MUSIC VIDEO, AGES 2-5
Description - This is a hit new animated video based on a song on The Pop Ups' "Great Pretenders Club," the Brooklyn musical duo's fourth full album, bringing together a collection of 11 original songs. Through danceable electro-pop beat and smart lyrics, the album looks to engage children in imaginative play as a means of exploration and learning with their environment and others. Animator: Garrett Davis; Catch The Pop Ups' newest album, Great Pretenders Club, on Amazon Prime: Digital: http://amzn.to/1OJvmpv
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Bird and Rhino are best of friends and quite animated in The Pop Ups distinctive adventurous storytelling style. Rhino, you see, has a proclivity for putting out dangerous fires - Don't think I've used that word in a review before but it's a good one, look it up. Bird is along for the ride wherever the fear of fire takes them. At least he gets to eat bugs from Rhino's back (sometimes called a Serengeti win-win). The production value from song to video is a pleasure and the lessons are subtle and true. Onward and upward Bird and Rhino! Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Music Judge.
Runtime: 3 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 3-8
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Video and DVD

BREAKFAST CLUB BY TIM KUBART
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
BREAKFAST CLUB BY TIM KUBART
SUGAR MOUNTAIN PR
Series: MUSIC VIDEO, AGES 2-5
Description - Tim Kubart's music video features fellow Sprout Channel host Carly Ciarrocchi, plus special guest Kal Penn and a host of parents and kids, all singing to his new hit "Breakfast Club" from the album "Home." Director: Tim Kubart; Editor: Glenn Garthwaite
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Who knew that breakfast could be this much fun? Well, maybe a few of us...but not this much fun! Tim Kubart's live-action bouncy bundle of hip music and stellar performances will get any family up and ready for whatever their day brings! Carly Ciarrocchi joyous breakfast rap is a high point. The fine dining mixture of adults and kid performances are infectious and adorable. Breakfast Club is a must for any menu and can be served all day...Hint: Turn it up. Not a morning person? You will be after listening to Tim's terrific danceable tune. Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Music Judge.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - coming soon
Runtime: 3 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 3-8
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Video and DVD

MY ALL AMERICAN
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
MY ALL AMERICAN
XXX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - What Freddie Steinmark (Finn Wittrock) wants most in the world is to play football. Although he is deemed too small by the usual athletic standards, his father trains him hard. Freddie brings a fight to the game that ultimately gets him noticed--by none other than legendary University of Texas coach Darrell Royal (Aaron Eckhart). Awarded a scholarship and a chance to play for the Longhorns, Freddie sets off to Austin with his loving high school sweetheart, Linda (Sarah Bolger), determined to make the team. Alongside his old teammate Bobby Mitchell (Rett Terrell) and new pal James Street (Juston Street), Freddie is put through the paces of a grueling practice schedule. The boys' camaraderie off the field translates into solid playing on it, and they rise up the depth charts, giving the Longhorns a real chance to improve upon their mediocre record. But just when they're reveling in the success of the season, Freddie suffers an injury that leads to a shocking diagnosis and the biggest ...
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This faith-based film is truly inspirational. Based on a true story, it has its heart-breaking moments but, for the most part is uplifting and charming. Freddie Steinmark's legacy, both in Colorado and at the University of Texas is an active part of football for the Longhorns today. Kudos to director, Angelo Pizzo, known for writing both Hoosiers and Rudy, for his directorial debut. Football fans will love this film. Non fans will be critical of its predictability and clich�d moments. But, who cares, it's entertaining and has its own audience.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This is a phenomenal, all American family traditional film because of the classic setting. I enjoyed this movie because it reminds me of my family background and the support they give me in all my extra-curricular activities just like the subject in this film, Freddie Steinmark (Finn Wittrock). I totally relate to this movie starting with his challenges of wanting to pursue his dreams and reach for the stars. The director, Angelo Pizzo is highly cheered for drama, biography and love of sport that he reveals in this lavish, stunning, family-friendly movie.

This film tells the true story of a boy whose good sportsmanship leads his team to victory and for his heroic values and compassion and love of the sport of football. The family lives in a rural area. Both parents work and are active in giving to their son old-fashion values and beliefs. His character is grandiose, smart and loving. Most importantly, it shows his outstanding but subtle leadership qualities. His mother, Gloria Steinmark (Robin Tunney) is very supportive and his father, Fred Steinmark (Michael Reilly Burke) attends every football event. Even though he is consider small by athletic standards, through his talents and hard work, he is finally picked to join the University of Texas Longhorns football team by legendary coach Darrell Royal (Aaron Eckhart). Freddie and his teammates rise up the charts, giving the team a real chance to improve upon their past mediocre record. And, just when they're reveling in the success of the season, Freddie suffers an injury that leads to a shocking diagnosis and the biggest challenge he will ever face.

My favorite part of this film is when Freddie gets a scholarship to attend the University of Texas to play for the Longhorns. It is hilarious because, when the coach tells him he is accepted, he holds the coach's hand and does not let go. When he finally lets go, he is fumbling, trying to sit back down in his seat. I was so proud of him because he accomplished his goal to receive a scholarship.

I recommend this film for ages 10 to 18 and I give it 5 out of 5 Stars. I feel this way because this movie is fantastic, family-friendly and is something that families across the world can relate to with similar or different issues. I really appreciated this movie and I hope you will as well.

Be sure to check it out when it opens in theaters Friday, November 13, 2015

Reviewed by Tre'ana Hickson, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

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


THE 33
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
THE 33
WARNER BROS. PICTURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - Based on the real-life event, when a gold and copper mine collapses, it traps 33 miners underground for 69 days.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This live-action feature film directed by the Patricia Riggen is truly inspirational and I love it! The 33 is based on the true story of the 2010 Chilean San Jose mine collapse and the 33 miners trapped 2,300 feet below ground. This movie is so suspenseful because it connects the audience to the characters and I did not want to see any of them die.

This movie taught me that you should be hopeful and not think the worst even when it seems hopeless. The miners kept up hope that they are going to be rescued even though they only have 14 cans of tuna to split between them for an unknown period of time. This film also shows the importance of team-work because, without it, they would all perish.

Antonio Banderas really steps out of his typical roles and his rendition of Mario Sepulveda is truly outstanding! He really transforms into a Chilean miner and he is a true leader among the miners. Another stand out actor is Rodrigo Santoro who plays Laurence Golborne, Minister of Mining for the Chilean President. He is caring, loving and compassionate and does an outstanding job making me believe that he really cares about these men trapped in the mine. He does everything in his power to make sure that the miners stay alive and pulls together mining teams from across the world to drill into the ground in hopes of saving the miners. Josh Brolin plays the role of Jeff Hart, one of the miners sent from the U.S.A. who eventually succeeds in drilling a hole large enough to send in a body cage for the miners.

The target audience for this film is anyone who enjoys adventure and suspenseful movies. I recommend this movie for ages 10 to 18 because this isn't gory or a violent movie, but it is suspenseful. This movie is good for kids because it makes you learn what the lifestyle of a miner in Chile is like. Everyday, they face life or death situations such as this one.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars because it made me feel like I was there every step of the way. As the miners said, "All we have is family." The love of family, teamwork and hope brought these 33 men back from the depths of despair. You will be cheering from your seat! Come see this outstanding film when it opens nationwide on November 14!

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

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


BROOKLYN
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BROOKLYN
FOX SEARCHLIGHT PICTURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - An Irish immigrant lands in 1950s Brooklyn, where she quickly falls into a new romance. When her past catches up with her, however, she must choose between two countries and the lives that exist within.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Brooklyn, directed by John Crowley, is a romantic drama that I would watch again and again because of its heartfelt moments and the relationship between the characters.

Brooklyn is about a girl named Eilis who lives in Ireland with her sister and mother and is going to America to find a better opportunity for work. It is hard for her when she first moves to America because she grieves over leaving her family and is terribly homesick. She falls madly in love in New York. Eilis returns to Ireland for a family crisis and she puts herself in a very complicated situation, making her wonder if she ever wants to leave Ireland again.

The acting in Brooklyn makes it realistic and a pleasure to watch. The cast members are chosen very well and they play their parts with a lot of character and emotion. My favorite character is Eilis, played by Irish American actress Saoirse Ronan. She is a perfect Eilis because she is so believable which helps build the audience's love for the story.

I really felt the love between Tony and Eilis. Tony, played by Emory Cohen, is sweet, funny, and sweeps Eilis off her feet when she is vulnerable and needing comfort the most. Tony's Italian heritage both attracts her and stretches her as a character.

The settings, scenery and costumes are appropriate for the time period of the 1950s and really captures the essence of what it life would have been like in Ireland and Brooklyn at that time. The costumes are very realistic and transport the viewer to a different time and place.

My favorite scene is when two of her boarding school friends teach Eilis how to eat spaghetti properly in preparation for dinner with Tony's Italian family. This scene got many people in the audience laughing.

The moral to this story is that "home is home." We also see that home is where the heart is. Eilis loves both Ireland and America, and a gentleman in both places. Which man and which home will she ultimately choose?

I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars for the beautiful romance and the amazing settings. I recommend this for ages 13 to 18. Parents should be aware that there is some bad language and there is a sex scene that they might not want their younger kids to watch.

If you are a romance lover or looking for a cinema vacation, aka "cinecation", then Brooklyn is just right for you! Check out this movie on November 4th in theaters near you.

Reviewed by Mia A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

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


SPECTRE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SPECTRE
SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - A cryptic message from the past sends James Bond on a rogue mission to Mexico City and eventually Rome, where he meets Lucia, the beautiful and forbidden widow of an infamous criminal. Bond infiltrates a secret meeting and uncovers the existence of the sinister organization known as SPECTRE. Meanwhile back in London, Max Denbigh, the new head of the Centre of National Security, questions Bond's actions and challenges the relevance of MI6 led by M. Bond covertly enlists Moneypenny and Q to help him seek out Madeleine Swann, the daughter of his old nemesis Mr. White, who may hold the clue to untangling the web of SPECTRE. As the daughter of the assassin, she understands Bond in a way most others cannot. As Bond ventures towards the heart of SPECTRE, he learns a chilling connection between himself and the enemy he seeks.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - James Bond returns in this film in so many ways that are familiar for those of us who grew up with 007 films. Daniel Craig delivers a classic Bond character and director, Sam Mendez creates a film that reminds me of Casino Royale, Goldfinger and the Bond films of the 60s. The opening scene is as fast-paced as any. In fact, one of our younger youth reviewers said that scene was just a "white blur" for him. He couldn't keep up with it. The film has an extraordinary car, the proverbial car chases, the predictable "bad guys", the need for Bond to save the world, and the beautiful women. One thing I really liked is that the women do not get killed in this film. Another thing is the ending where Bond exercises great restraint in the name of love. Could it be that Bond is maturing? Might be. All I know is that if you like crazy non-stop action, fantastic locations and a great cast - you will enjoy this film. It is not for young kids. Stick with your teens and older.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Spectre is an interesting and intense movie filled with adventure and high action. It features our favorite, highly trained assassin, James Bond (Daniel Craig), also known as 007. The 00 program is being threatened to be shut down because it is believed to be obsolete and its replacement is the formation of a new world order of surveillance technology secretly headed up by the villain organization Spectre. Bond has a special mission that he can't share with anyone yet, he finds himself in bit of trouble carrying out the mission. Indirectly, this secret mission will lead him directly to the very source that is trying to dismantle the 00 program and control the world's collection and distribution data and technology.

The message of this film is DO NOT let anything come in the way of you completing your mission. In the movie, there are a few who know they are not going to live to complete their mission. However, they did not let death stop them from completing it. They are able to set up a plan to have the mission completed by someone else so the job still gets done which also proves no one is an island and we all need help to accomplish our goals.

My favorite scene is when James is protecting Madeline while she is sleeping and he is half awake. A rat appears in the dark. He takes out his gun and says to the rat, "Who are you and who sent you?" He does not realize that he is talking to a rat the whole time.

My favorite character is Madeline Swann (Lea Seydoux) because she's really cool. She is extremely smart, well trained and very quick. She is the perfect wing woman!

I highly recommend this movie for boy's ages 14 to 18 as well as girls who like action filled movies. I give this film 4.5 shinning stars. Spectre opens in theatres November 6, 2015.

Reviewed by Kendyl P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

The new James Bond movie, Spectre, is an interesting and exciting film, but might be a bit too scary for most kids under thirteen. In fact, one of the scenes was so scary that I'm not even going to write about it! The movie begins with an amazing action scene where James Bond, played by Daniel Craig, gets a ring with a symbol on it from a bad guy. This ring and this symbol becomes the mystery that James Bond has to solve.

I have been told that the title sequel is typical of a James Bond movie, but other parts of the film may not be appropriate for kids under thirteen. The title sequence contained animation, partially naked women and octopus; it was pretty strange.

The main plot involves James Bond trying to track down a mysterious and deadly organization. He is trying to piece together what the organization is really up to. Discovering how all of the people and events are connected from his present and his past are vital in cracking the mystery. Like most James Bond movies, it takes place in many exotic locations and several languages are spoken. There are some subtitles in parts which add a special element as well. The movie is action packed and full of fight and chase scenes. The special effects are very good but I got annoyed during the action-packed scenes. In almost every fight scene there were so many quick cuts that I couldn't follow the action, everything was like a white blur.

I read that this is the second-most expensive movie ever made. Spectre has many special effects including lots of explosions, stunt doubles, special makeup and wires. Spectre ended up spending over 300 million dollars making this film. Unfortunately, there are many other movies that are just as good with only half as much of a budget.

Spectre is two and a half hours long and there were several times I thought the movie might end, but it kept going. The music is very suspenseful, which is one of the main reasons it is so scary. The sound effects are also very realistic, but they were almost too loud which amplifies how scary the movie is.

I rate this movie 3.5 out of 5 stars, mainly because it was so scary. I would recommend this for ages 13+ due to the amount of violence and the nudity in the title sequence. I think that adults would definitely like it more than kids.

Reviewed by Miles T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

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


INSIDE OUT
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
INSIDE OUT
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - Growing up can be a bumpy road, and it's no exception for Riley, who is uprooted from her Midwest life when her father starts a new job in San Francisco. Like all of us, Riley is guided by her emotions - Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness. The emotions live in Headquarters, the control center inside Riley's mind, where they help advise her through everyday life. As Riley and her emotions struggle to adjust to a new life in San Francisco, turmoil ensues in Headquarters. Although Joy, Riley's main and most important emotion, tries to keep things positive, the emotions conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house and school. Directed by Pete Doctor and Ronaldo del Carmen. Starring Diane Lane, Rashida Jones and Amy Poehler.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Ladies and gentlemen, we have a masterpiece on our hands. Pixar has done it again. They already lay claim to two of the top 100 movies of all-time with Up and Wall-E and they have now added Inside Out to their mantelpiece. I will gladly go on record by calling this one of the finest animated features to ever be created. Why? Because it's THE most innovative, imaginative and creative film to be made since 2008s Synecdoche, New York.

The beautiful thing about this movie is that both adults and children can enjoy it. As a matter of fact, I'd say that adults may enjoy it more, because they can have a more fundamental understanding of what this film is. It is 100 minutes of analogous brilliance, that changes our idea of what goes on in our heads. Is this idea fathomable or true? No. But the analogy provides the very product film was invented to produce: a stimulation of the imagination.

Children will enjoy the beautiful colors and the basic plot. What the children can understand is what they can relate to: growing up and adjusting to life as they enter puberty. They will laugh at things that SEEM funny or the more, for lack of better word, simple pieces of humor. But the true jokes, the pieces of humor that have the most intellect are the ones children won't understand. I appreciate those the most because they're fathomable. It's the moment when you laugh, not because the joke is ridiculous, but because you can actually imagine that happening.

Amidst the hilarity there is also a certain depth of emotion. There is a tear-jerking moment, yes, but I mean more along the lines of nostalgia. The way the movie portrays the effects of the emotions and the rationalization that go along with them, conjure a desire to reflect on oneself in their pre-teen days. This film may literally get into the mind of a pre-teen, but the metaphorical representation is what seals the reflection. "I was like that?", "Is that how I thought then...I that how I think now?" may be questions you find yourself asking yourself. These are the effects of a brilliant screenplay.

On a final and personal note, I'll tell this short story. There is a scene in the film, where two officers are questioning a cloud in Imagination Land about her dead husband. Then, in the middle of the interrogation the cloud herself is killed as she is run through by our main character. One cop goes, "Hey wait...", but as he says that, the other cop grabs him and says, "Forget it Jake, it's Cloud Town."...get it? It's a parody of the famous final words from the classic 1974 noir, Chinatown. I'll tell you, it wasn't very comfortable being the only person in the theater laughing at that joke.

It's just one joke amongst many. Beyond the hilarity and, mainly due to the aforementioned reasons I explained, I happily give this instant classic 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 7 to 18. It can be seen at a local theater near you. Enjoy.

By Willie Jones, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Pixar's New Inside Out is a Brilliant Creative Masterpiece!

Inside Out is one of the most creative movies that I have ever seen. Created and directed by Pete Doctor, Inside Out features the voices of Amy Poehler, Phillis Smith, Bill Hader, Lewis Black and Mindy Kaling. The film was produced by the wonderful animation house, Pixar and is being distributed by Disney.

Inside Out is about the mind of a young girl, Riley and the emotions that rule her day to day existence. The emotions are characters: Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust and Fear--and they live in her brain, at headquarters. When Riley and her family move to San Francisco from Minnesota, this presents a huge emotional challenge for Riley. Joy tries to keep Riley thinking positively about her new home, but the other emotions have other ideas and make the transition to San Francisco more complicated.

My favorite part of Inside Out is when Riley and her parents are at the dinner table and all their emotions are battling for center stage. "Anger" in Riley is fighting against "Anger" in the father. Meanwhile, the Mother's emotions are frustrated by the Father and they are remembering some hot Brazilian guy that the Mother knew and wishing she had married him! This sequence is hysterical!

The writing of Inside Out is rich and complex. The script takes the audience and their emotions on a rollercoaster ride as well. At one point I saw my mother and many other people in the audience crying!

The directing of Inside Out is terrific. Like Pete Doctor's previous films, Monster's Inc. and Up, Inside Out is not only entertaining but also reveals something brilliant about what it means to be human. There's a great sense of invention to how the film lays out the mind with different areas like the subconscious, long, short and core memories and train of thought. The animation in these sequences is really surreal.

Inside Out has a wonderful, simple message. We need all our emotions to be an actual human being. It's not enough to just have Joy--you need Sadness to offset the Joy and to be compassionate. You need Fear to help you to make good decisions and to not be too risky. You need Anger to stick up for yourself. And, you need Disgust to make the right fashion choices!!

Inside Out is appropriate for ages 6 to18. It can be appreciated on lots of levels. Kids will enjoy all the slapstick humor and teens will enjoy the sophisticated writing and inside jokes about the brain. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Clayton P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

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



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