‘The Secret of Moonacre’ Streets Sept. 21

SecretOfMoonacre.jpgEntertainment One has released The Secret of Moonacre on DVD and Blu-ray. If you loved it in the theaters (or if you missed it), now you can enjoy it at home. Especially suited to eight- to 12-year-olds, The Secret of Moonacre is one of the seven titles on the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Search, which invites kids aged six to 15 to compete for a chance to be a recognized film critic for 12 months — attending red carpet events and interviewing stars as well as reviewing new films ahead of their theatrical release for KIDS FIRST! and our media partners. And, like the other six titles, The Secret of Moonacre is readily available in-store at Toys “R” Us (on the special KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Search endcap display) and online at Amazon.com.

The film, adapted from Elizabeth Goudge’s novel The Little White Horse, follows the fantastical adventures of a newly orphaned 13-year-old who discovers a magical, moonlit world when she goes to live with her eccentric uncle at his aptly named Moonacre Manor. The mysterious environs are a huge change from the luxury she’d known in London, but Maria Merryweather (played by Dakota Blue Richards, The Golden Compass) suffers a bigger shock when she learns that the task of saving Moonacre Manor from an ancient curse rests on her young shoulders.

The story offers a safe context for parents to discuss with their children several topics that may otherwise be too hard or scary to express: Who would take care of you if something happened to your parents? What would you do if, instead of your family taking care of you, you found it was you who had to save your family? And in the story, Maria’s uncle (played by the wonderful Ioan Gruffudd, whose film credits include Fantastic Four) treats her dreadfully – opening up the question of why a tragedy can affect someone’s behavior. These are among the talking points developed in the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Discussion Guide.

We’ve developed the discussion guide to enhance your after-viewing discussions, and it’s a great resource if your child plans to enter the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics’ Search (there’s a guide for each of the seven titles). There’s still plenty of time to enter. October 10 is the deadline to submit the written review, and, upon acceptance, KIDS FIRST! will send the applicants instructions for creating a videotaped review that will then be posted on WonderWorldTV.com for public vote — like this one that’s on the site now. Be sure to visit and vote for your favorite critic!

Winners of the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics’ Search will be announced the weekend of Nov. 12 – 14, with festivities that will include the excitement of KIDS FIRST!’s attempt to set a world’s record of one million kids “viewing and reviewing” a single film (The Velveteen Rabbit) with a caring adult.

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