Archive for January, 2015

Alexander and his … Very Bad Day – Coming out on DVD/Blu-Ray Feb. 10.

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

Alexander.Vert.v4_1.jpgComing out on Feb 10 in DVD/Blu-ray, mark your calenders now. This film, based on the beloved children’s book by Judith Viorst and starring Steve Carell, Jennifer Garner and Ed Oxenbould as Alexander, is a wonderful family movie that can be enjoyed with your school-aged kids without worrying about violence, profanity or other unsavory behavior. There is some rude humor and a bit of reckless behavior but, overall, it’s pretty tame yet funny. Alexander’s bad luck spreads to his family members and once they experience their own “bad” things, the end result brings everyone closer together. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Gerry O., age 12, comments, “This film has comedy that isn’t just little jokes or things that are commonly seen in lots of normal comedies but, unique and creative comedy that is really funny.”  See his full review below as well as coverage from the premiere.

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Reviewed by Gerry Orz, Age 12, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic

What a hilarious adventure! Something I like about this film is that although it’s a comedy, at the same time, the directors have created a story so it doesn’t feel as if it’s just one big joke. In my estimation, it is just perfect.

This film has a bubble of unique comedy that sends the audience laughing out loud. And, it has a sprinkle of romance packaged with it which makes it a unique story.

The story starts out showing an eleven-(soon to be twelve)-year-old kid who always has bad days while everyone else in his entire family always has perfect days. On the very early morning of his 12th birthday he wishes that his family members would have a bad day. Well they do! And, phew, is it bad!

This film has comedy that isn’t just little jokes or things that are commonly seen in lots of normal comedies but, unique and creative comedy that is really funny. The actors are all well suited to their roles and, something I love about this film is that the ending is not easily predictable. Also, the story is created in such a way that the comedy is just a part of the story. The creators managed to get a very important message through to the audience.

My favorite scene is when the sister is under the weather with a common cold but has a play that day. She decides to drink a whole bunch of cough medicine and gets drunk during the play. This part is absolutely hilarious. The entire audience, including me, could not stop laughing during this scene.

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is a young kid film but not too young. I would recommend for ages 9 to 18 and I give it 5 out of 5 stars for a great story, fantastic acting and unbelievable comedy!

Strange Magic Is Just That – George Lucas Meets Shakespeare

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

214144.jpgGeorge Lucas has turned his charms onto the tale, Strange Magic, a new animated film, that is a madcap fairy tale musical inspired by Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Popular songs from the past six decades help tell the tale of a colorful cast of goblins, elves, fairies and imps, and their hilarious misadventures sparked by the battle over a powerful potion. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Keefer B. comments, “The animation and design are exquisite. The character designs look exactly like something George Lucas would create.” Samantha A. adds, “I have to admit, this movie is different from anything I have ever seen before, but I’m not sure whether that’s a good or bad thing.” See their full reviews below.

Strange Magic

Reviewed by Keefer C. B., KIDS FIRST! Critics, age 14


Strange Magic is an animated film about two worlds. One where there is happiness, singing and love in the air. In the second world, everything is evil, with mystery around every corner and its leader – a dark, heartless king called “the bog king” (voice by Alex Cumming) that bans all love in his dark world. These two worlds have always been separated until one fairy princess named Marianne, (voice by Evan Rachel Wood) crosses the barrier and changes everything.

I have to admit, this movie is different from anything I have ever seen before, but I’m not sure whether that’s a good or bad thing. It is a musical and most of the songs are songs that have been on the radio by popular artists. For example, Kelly Clarkson’s “What Doesn’t Kill You Stronger” and that is something I liked. But, something I am not a fan of are things that happen in the movie and how the movie is directed at children, but has some very mature things in it.

This movie is unpredictable which isn’t a good thing all the time. This movie takes a turn that I had no idea how it even happened, to be honest. I don’t even know how it got to where it ended. It all went so fast that I didn’t get time to understand what was happening at the moment. Other times, it is kind of cool seeing what is happening next. But overall, I didn’t exactly like how things move so fast and I never really got the concept of what was going on.

One thing that I love about the movie is that the characters are different. There are fairies, goblins and imps. I really liked that mythical feel of the movie.

This movie may look like it’s for kids but trust me, it’s not. There are things that I didn’t even understand so I doubt that kids and younger than me will understand what is happening at all. There are also some mature scenes in the movie that made me unsure if it is kid-friendly or not. For example, the husband cheats on his wife on their wedding day. That happened within the first 20 minutes of the movie.

I am recommending this movie for ages 10 to 13 because it still has a kid-friendly touch that would draw little kids in. But, like I said, it does have some mature scenes. I am giving this movie 3 out of 5 stars because it isn’t something I liked but I know that some kids would. Gary Rydstrom, the director and George Lucas, the writer do a good job on this film but it is just not something I personally enjoyed.

 

 

 

Paddington – A great Adventure! Lots of Twists and Turns and an Adorable Character

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015

Paddington.jpgFrom the producers of Harry Potter comes this 21st Century version of Paddington with all the charm that this classic character deserves. The storyline follows a young Peruvian bear who travels to London in search of a home. Finding himself lost and alone at Paddington Station, he meets the kindly Brown family, who offer him a temporary haven. KIDS FIRST! Critics Gerry O. comments, “This movie has a nice core of humor with an intriguing story that is intense, but lighthearted too. Breathtaking special effects, animation and a strong feel of adventure round out the show.” Brianna Hope B adds, “Paddington is so outgoing and adorable. You can’t help but love this bear. He has an innocent way about him, but still is a little mischievous and gets into trouble.” See their full reviews below.

Paddington
Reviewed by Brianna Hope B. KIDS FIRST! Critic, age 15

Paddington is a great adventure, with lots of twists and turns. This film is playful, comedic, enjoyable and definitely a great film for friends and family.

Paddington (Ben Whishaw, voice) is a rare breed of bear that travels all alone to London.  He wants to find a home after his is destroyed. While there, he discovers that it’s not what he expects, but finds a family that’s willing to take him in and look after him for just a little while. This is when everyone’s adventure begins.

Paddington is so outgoing and adorable. You can’t help but love this bear. He has an innocent way about him, but still is a little mischievous and gets into trouble. His visual effects and fur looks very real and life-like. Nicole Kidman’s character (Millicent) is very determined to add Paddington to her collection of stuffed animals.  She will stop at nothing to get him. She’s fierce, frightening and intimidating. I love the story line, humor, and definitely the action. I liked that the climax of this film is very unpredictable and shocks the audience. My favorite character would have to be Paddington. He truly thinks of the wellbeing of others and his curiosity is adorable. He reminds you of a child learning new things. A scene that I would call my favorite is when Paddington tries to return a wallet to a man that dropped out of his packet while walking out of an antique shop. Paddington chases him, trying to get the wallet to him. Finally he catches up with the man by falling on him from the air. When he falls on the man they both tumble down and about 30 wallets fall out of the man’s coat. Paddington catches a pickpocket and ends up in the paper on his first day in London. It’s a very comical scene that makes the audience crack up.

One of the messages of this film is that families are not just made up by the people who are related to us, but friends and even animals can be a part of our family.

I recommend Paddington for ages 8 to 16. However it’s great for the whole family and anyone who loves Bears. It’s rated PG and there’s nothing really you would need to look out for.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars.  It’s a great film that makes you feel good. Paddington arrives in theaters on January 16th, so please check it out.

Paddington
By Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Critic, age 12

From the producers of the Harry Potter franchise comes another children’s film that many families will love for its humor, storyline, special effects and of course – the Bear! Paddington will be loved by families everywhere.

This movie has a nice core of humor with an intriguing story that is intense, but lighthearted too. Breathtaking special effects, animation and a strong feel of adventure round out the show.

The story starts when a very intelligent family of bears is sadly separated. An earthquake happens and the aunt must send her young nephew to London for a better home. After arriving in London, this young bear is taken in by a family but immediately starts running into challenges of fitting in to the human world.

This film is wonderful. I love the cast – lots of talented and wonderful people. Ben Wishaw plays the voice of Paddington and is excellent at making his character seem adorable and innocent, yet smart and caring at the same time. The humor is off-the-charts amazing and the camera angles and shots are one-of-a-kind. Some shots I could not get over and had to watch again and again.

My favorite scene is when Paddington tries to say his name to Mr. Brown, who is kind of the father of the family. But, Paddington says it in bear language. When Mr. Brown tries to repeat it, Paddington looks horrified and says, “How Rude!” It is a funny and lighthearted scene and kind of sets the right mood for this funny film.

This film is diffidently meant for kids but adults will enjoy it as well. I recommend it for ages 8 to 18 and give it 5 out of 5 stars.