The All-Star category has 922 titles

Here are up to 50 of them

KIDS FIRST! has linked to external websites through which you may order many of the KIDS FIRST! endorsed titles

Series: FEATURES, AGES 8-18
Description - Chihiro's family is moving to a new house, but when they stop on the way to explore an abandoned village, her parents undergo a mysterious transformation and Chihiro is whisked into a world of fantastic spirits ruled over by the soceress Yubaba. Put to work in a magical bathhouse for spirits and demons, Chihiro must use all her wits to survive in this strange new place, find a way to free her parents and return to the normal world. Overflowing with imaginative creatures and thrilling storytelling, Spirited Away became a worldwide smash hit, and is one of the most critically-acclaimed films of all time.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Studio Ghibli's deluxe Spirited Away DVD Set is a delectation for the senses. This highly enjoyable Miyazaki masterpiece keeps your eyes transfixed throughout. Spirited Away was released in 2001 in Japan (2003 in US) and nabbed Best Animated Feature at the 2003 Academy Awards.

Spirited Away tells the story of a young girl, Chihiro, who, on the way to her new home gets sidetracked with her family and discovers a magical, unknown world. At the beginning of the film, they wander into an abandoned town where Chihiro's parents get turned into pigs. The rest of the film is a grand adventure where she tries to save her parents from the manipulative clutches of the Yubaba, the Sorceress and owner of the bath house of the gods.

The DVD set includes two discs, a Blu-Ray and a traditional DVD. It also includes bonus features, such as the "making of" Spirited Away, a Nippon Television special; Behind The Microphone, a behind-the-scenes look at the English translation and voiceovers; the original Japanese theatrical trailers; the original Japanese TV spots; and a wonderful booklet with statements from the filmmakers.

In the Nippon Television special, Miyazaki talks about the process of making Spirited Away at Studio Ghibli headquarters. This special gives us an inside look at Studio Ghibli and the thought process of Miyazaki. It shows us the art of creating the film and the dire time constraints in the animation process. Miyazaki tells us how he had to hire double the amount of animators in order to make the deadline for this film. He also goes into how there were so many late nights at the studio, so he had to entrust some of his work to one of his fellow coworkers.

In Behind the Microphone, we see how much effort goes into making the English language version of the film. Narrated by director John Lasseter (who spearheaded the English language translation), this wonderful short shows us how the English-speaking actors match their voices' to the movement of the characters' mouths in the animation.

This Spirited Away deluxe set is everything you could ask for. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18.

Reviewed by Clayton P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
Runtime: 125 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 12.99 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE, AGES 7-18
Description - From the legendary Studio Ghibli, creators of Spirited Away, and acclaimed director Hayao Miyazaki, comes the Academy Award�- nominated* fantasy adventure for the whole family. Sophie, a quiet girl working in a hat shop, finds her life thrown into turmoil when she is literally swept off her feet by a handsome but mysterious wizard named Howl. The vain and vengeful Witch of the Waste, jealous of their friendship, puts a curse on Sophie and turns her into a 90-year-old woman. On a quest to break the spell, Sophie climbs aboard Howl's magnificent moving castle and into a new life of wonder and adventure. But as the true power of Howl's wizardry is revealed, Sophie finds herself fighting to protect them both from a dangerous war of sorcery that threatens their world. *2005: Best Animated Feature, Howl's Moving Castle
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Studio Ghibli's deluxe Howl's Moving Castle DVD set is the key to all the magic in this world. This profoundly charming Miyazaki monument draws out all the negative energy in your body and fills you with its creative storyline. Howl's Moving Castle was released in 2004 in Japan and 2005 in the U.S.A. It won a myriad amount of awards including the Tokyo Animation of the Year Award in 2005 and was nominated for the 2006 Oscars for Best Animated Feature Film.

Howl's Moving Castle tells the story of an unconfident young woman, Sophie, who leads an unexciting life at her father's hat shop. All of that instantly changes when she is saved by Howl from two hooligans looking to heckle her. An evil witch known as the Witch of the Waste takes offense at her befriending Howl and casts a curse on Sophie, turning her into an old lady. Sophie's one hope of releasing the curse lies with a self-centered, troubled wizard and his comedic entourage.

The DVD set includes two discs, a Blu-Ray and a standard DVD. It also includes a mystical treasure trove full of valuable bonus features, such as Feature Length Storyboards; Behind the Microphone; Interview with Diana Wynne Jones (writer of the book Howl's Moving Castle); Miyazaki's visit to Pixar; The Birth Story of the Film Soundtrack; Explanation of CG; Original Theatrical Trailers; TV Spots; and an exclusive booklet with statements from the filmmakers.

In the Behind The Microphone special, Emily Mortimer, the English dub voice for Sophie, states that it's hard to build up emotion with voice acting because it's so quick. Billy Crystal expresses that there is never one layer to a Miyazaki film and that there is a lot of emotional depth among all the characters. We also hear from the other voice over actors - Jean Simmons, Christian Bale, Lauren Bacall and Blythe Danner.

In Miyazaki's Visit to Pixar, Miyazaki talks with his biggest fan and friend, John Lasseter, the Chief Creative Officer at Pixar (now at Disney). Miyazaki starts by gifting Lasseter a giant model of the cat bus from My Neighbor Totoro, another Studio Ghibli classic. Later on, they interview Lasseter on his opinions of Miyazaki and his artistic animation style. He states that, in any of Miyazaki's films there are at least ten original ideas. Lasseter later expresses that Miyazaki's films always makes you think and question the world you live in.

This immensely marvelous Howl's Moving Castle DVD deluxe set will instantly break any curse that is hindering you and allow you to enjoy life to the fullest. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18.

Reviewed by Clayton P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
Runtime: 119 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 7-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 15.9 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - After the events of Captain America: Civil War, King T'Challa returns home to the reclusive, technologically advanced African nation of Wakanda to serve as his country's new leader. However, T'Challa soon finds that he is challenged for the throne from factions within his own country. When two foes conspire to destroy Wakanda, the hero known as Black Panther must team up with C.I.A. agent Everett K. Ross and members of the Dora Milaje, Wakandan special forces, to prevent Wakanda from being dragged into a world war.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - In the latest production from Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), we see the original story of the Black Panther. We were introduced to the Black Panther in Captain America: Civil War. This film depicts the story of King T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) and the Black Panther tribe.

When T'Challa returns home to the reclusive, beautiful and technologically impressive nation of Wakanda, a fictional country in Africa, he is named the new leader following the death of his father. True to custom, he is challenged by the tribesman and becomes the new King.

Elsewhere, a cousin unknown to him returns from the United States to challenge T'Challa's reign, and chaos ensues. Warmonger (Michael B Jordan) and his political beliefs are diabolical and the opposite of T'Challa's. As foes set forth to destroy Wakanda, Black Panther teams up with a C.I.A. agent and a neighboring tribe to prevent the country from a world war. The path from light to dark, and back to doing good in the world beyond Wakanda is refreshing.

The film is pure Marvel action-adventure with a broad political and socially aware feeling. It is awake and unique. It may be a superhero film, yet it is also steeped in real political and social issues similar to those we face today, especially diversity and inclusion. The strong female characters - Nakia (Lupita Nyong'o), Okoye (Danai Gurira) and Ramonda (Angela Bassett) are phenomenal.

I love this film! From the casting, cinematography and directing, to the special effects and female empowerment, it is fulfilling. The action is believable, many of the fight scenes are based on African martial arts, although the CGI at times is a little whack. Overall, I was displaced, forgetting I was sitting in a theater. The costumes are fantastic with attention to detail befitting royalty. Wakanda forever!

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars for the cast, social and political awareness, technology focus and female empowerment. This film will appeal to ages 8 to 18, as well as adults. I caution younger viewing due to fight scenes which may be disturbing. It opens in theater February 16, 2018 so, check it out!

Reviewed by Kimbirly O., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror

Wow! Exciting! Thrilling! I thoroughly enjoyed Black Panther!, Marvel's block buster film with a person of color as its star. The storyline, the fine strong black cast and the visuals are all excellent. The camera work and visual special effects are woven together to create a fantastic movie mosaic.

T'Challa / Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman) returns to his hidden, technologically advanced African home nation of Wakanda to be crowned king. He is threatened by not only internal strife but also outside forces. T'Challa's challenge is to save his people from a world war.

One of my favorite scenes happens when T'Challa, Nakia (Lupito Nyong'O) and Okoye (Danai Gurira) travel to Korea to retrieve a stolen object and its thief Ulysses Klaue (Andy Serkis). We see glamour and a bit of humor when Okoye is irritated by a wig she wears. They have a plan and, as plans often do, it goes astray. They are forced to fight and we see Okoye's wig go flying across the room as she goes into battle.

T'Challa's role model as a king is his father, until he learns of a negative deed. Then he is conflicted with what it means to be a good king. You have to see the film to find out how he resolves this issue.

I love the beautiful scenes with the water falls and forest. The GGI works well. The costumes are beautiful and extremely colorful. You can expect lots of action, violence and a sprinkling of romance.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18. Many adults will enjoy it also. The film opens in theaters nationwide on February 16, 2018. Be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Juanita S. L., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Honestly, this movie is just amazing. There are so many things this movie does incredibly correctly. This might be one of the greatest Superhero movies of all time!

The story is about T'challa, prince of the secluded, incredibly advanced nation of Wakanda, who struggles to defeat an enemy wanting to take his throne. He teams up with some phenomenal females to secure his role as King.

This film is just visually incredible, especially the city of Wakanda. The city looks so amazing. All the buildings and creations are so cool. But that's not all. The designs of the weapons and spaceships look very realistic and straight up awesome! Kudos to the visual effects team! I also loved the Black Panther suit. I love the idea of the suit absorbing hits into stored kinetic energy and using it as a shockwave like blast. The movie starts with a re-telling of the creation of Wakanda, but it was made out of sand. It looked so cool. In general, the aesthetic nature of this movie is just marvelous.

The nation of Wakanda also has a very interesting culture. I like that it blends futuristic technology with a tribal feel, in terms of the fashions, locations and culture. It may seem like an odd blend, but it works well. Even the music reflects this combination. Speaking of which, the music is also fantastic.

The characters in this film are multi-dimensional. I really enjoyed Everett Ross (Martin Freeman) and Black Panther himself (Chadwick Boseman). Plus, Sterling K. Brown (one of my favorite actors) is also in it and, while he has a small part, it is a key role. Hands down, the best characters are the female leads. The Future is Female! And there are some cool dudes. This movie has some wonderful female characters that everyone can look up to such as Danai Gurira, who I already love from AMC's The Walking Dead, plays the highly skilled warrior Okoye. Letitia Wright plays T'challa's tech-savvy little sister, Shuri and Lupita Nyong'o plays Nakia. I love these women and I'm sure many young kids will too.

This movie also has very interesting messages. The whole movie presents engaging thoughts on whether or not you should enter in other nation's affairs and the possible consequences of doing so. This is a pretty intriguing and well done storyline. I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 11 to 18. It opens in theaters February 16, 2018 so go check it out!

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

Black Panther is a stunning first solo outing for its title character that wowed me with its strong ensemble cast, inventive visuals and multi-layered story.

Black Panther follows T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman), King of Wakanda, an advanced and highly powerful territory that is disguised as a third-world country. He also protects his nation and its people as a masked vigilante called the Black Panther. After the death of his father, T'Challa is chosen to take the throne and receive the powers of the panther god. Just after his extravagant coronation, a threat finds its way into Wakanda's borders by Erik Killmonger. Killmonger is a fierce and skilled soldier who wishes to replace T'Challa and usher in a new age for the country. T'Challa will be tested and must protect the throne from Killmonger.

My favorite character is Shuri (Letitia Wright), T'Challa's whizkid sister who helps him maintain the mantle of Black Panther and stay one step ahead of the villains he faces. Letitia Wright delivers hilarious one-liners with near perfect timing. She nails the rapport between Shuri and her brother, interacting in a way that is both believable and develops both their characters.

An outstanding performance in this film comes from Michael B. Jordan who is brilliant as Killmonger. He abandons the genre's usual vague "destroy-the-world" motivation and creates a genuinely complicated character. Jordan has cutthroat moments that make you dread his presence, but his sinister manner is evened out by moments where you come to sympathize with his character.

The deep, emotional part of the film's story is unexpected and caught me by surprise. It is an important moment for the main character and what drives his actions for the rest of the film. Sometimes, these comic-book heroes make poor decisions and have to fight against their own demons as well as the bad guys. This has been done before in both comics and film, but here we really see T'Challa change through his experiences.

I recommend this film to ages 12 to 18. There is some action and violence with spears and swords that feels more violent than what I'm used to from comic book films. I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars. This opens in theaters February 16, 2018 so, be sure to check it out. Black Panther is easily one of the greatest comic-book films I've seen. Period.

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

This movie surprised me because it was more violent than I had anticipated. Director and writer Ryan Coogler drives the remarkable story of Black Panther in an exciting and action-packed way. One of the beginning scenes shows Black Panther challenged by a rival tribe that attempts to kill him, but fails. The scene takes place on top of a waterfall, which gives you an idea of just how many things Coogler had to deal with to choreograph the fighting for that scene.

Black Panther is about a young boy, T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) that becomes King of Wakanda after his father dies in an explosion. When T'Challa takes the throne, he and his people find out that someone stole a weapon made with the precious metal vibranium from a museum. They embark on a mission to find the weapon and its thieves. A character named Klaw (Andy Serkis) intends to sell the weapon. T'Challa's cousin Erik (Michael B. Jordan) also aided in stealing the weapon because Erik seeks revenge for T'Challa's father killing his dad. Without giving away the plot, Wakanda is threatened and, with the help of T'Challa aka Black Panther and his team, they fight to keep their nation alive.

What really stands out are the transitions from scene to scene because ach one is so unique. The soundtrack is unbelievably effective, fittin the movie perfectly with each song at the right place at the right time. I was surprised to find that Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out) playing W'Kabi. This movie also includes some humor. My favorite character is Everett K. Ross (Martin Freeman) because he plays a really good guy.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18. Black Panther at a theater opens in theaters February 16, 2018, so be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Lucia F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 19
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - Set at the dawn of time, when prehistoric creatures and woolly mammoths roamed the earth, Early Man tells the story of Dug, along with sidekick Hognob as they unite his tribe against a mighty enemy Lord Nooth and his Bronze Age City to save their home.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This fantastic, animated film from Nick Park and Aardman Animations had me laughing the entire time. Hands down, it is the best movie I have seen this year. With a unique storyline, exquisite action scenes and a rollercoaster of events, your eyes don't want to leave the screen.

Set in the Stone Age, when cavemen and wooly mammoths inhabited the Earth, Chief Bonbar and his tribe are driven out of their homeland by a Bronze Age army, led by Lord Nooth (Tom Hiddleston). Lord Nooth claims the Stone Age is over, and Chief Bonbar's (Timothy Spall) tribe is forced to remain in the volcanic badlands outside of the new city. A young caveman named Dug (Eddie Redmayne) tries to attack, but is knocked into a basket heading to the city. He tries to hide, but ends up being mistaken for a football player. When Dug and Lord Nooth finally meet, they make a deal: If Chief Bonbar's tribe beats Lord Nooth's team in a game of football, then the cavemen can have their valley back.

Dug looks at every situation with optimism. He cares about his tribe and will do absolutely anything for them. Even though he knows he could lose his valley, he constantly perseveres and doesn't think about giving up. Hognob (Nick Park) is the funniest character in the film. He is Dug's pet boar and, although he has no dialogue, he makes the weirdest noises. Hognob is so adorable that I want a pet boar now. The relationship Hognob and Dug share is loving and reminds me of the relationship I have with my pets.

The animation is ingenious, because each character is unconventional. With crooked teeth, messy hair and big eyes, these characters are ones you haven't seen before. My eyes were peeled the entire time, because I couldn't stop admiring the unique animation. My favorite part is when Dug tries to steal some balls from the Bronze Age city. Hognob distracts Lord Nooth and has to play the harp for him, while he takes a bath. Hognob tries to sing and play the harp, but it sounds so terrible that it makes you laugh.

The message of this film is to never give up under any circumstances. Don't ever feel intimidated by somebody, because with teamwork and optimism, you can accomplish absolutely anything. Appreciate your differences and remember that nobody can bring you down.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars, because I have never laughed so hard while watching a film. I recommend it for kids ages 8 to 18, and adults would enjoy it too. It is perfect to watch with your family and friends, because it will put a huge smile on your face and show you how important it is to follow your heart.

Catch this film in theaters nationwide on February 16, 2018. Find out what it means to be an early man.

Reviewed by Samantha M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - coming soon
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 5-18
Description - From the legendary Studio Ghibli, creators of Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro,, and Academy Award�-winning director Hayao Miyazaki, comes a heartwarming adventure, now featuring hours of new bonus features never-before-released in North America. When Sosuke, a young boy who lives on a clifftop overlooking the sea, rescues a stranded goldfish named Ponyo, he discovers more than he bargained for. Ponyo is a curious energetic young creature who yearns to be human, but even as she causes chaos around the house, he father, a powerful sorcerer, schemes to return Ponyo to the sea.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Studio Ghibli's deluxe Ponyo DVD Set is an extraordinary sight to behold. This vastly entertaining Miyazaki creation enchants you with its spellbinding animation style. Ponyo was released in 2008 in Japan (2009 in US) and garnered several awards including the Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year. The English language version includes such voice over talent as Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon, Tina Fey, Liam Neeson, Lily Tomlin and Betty White.

Ponyo tells the story of a five-year-old boy, Sosuke, who finds and becomes friends with a puzzling goldfish that he names Ponyo. Later on, he discovers that Ponyo is actually a goldfish princess who desires to become a human. Throughout their journey they overcome her father's displeasure of humans. Ponyo becomes so transfixed and loving towards Sosuke that he must undergo a few challenges set forth by her parents to see if he is worthy of her affection.

The DVD set includes two discs, a Blu-Ray and a traditional DVD. It includes over five hours of riveting bonus features, such as Feature Length Storyboards; Behind the Microphone; The Five Geniuses Who Created Ponyo; Interviews with Hayao Miyazaki and Toshio Suzuki (Producer); Theme Song Press Conference and Theme Song Music Video; Opening Event at Hibiya Scala-Za Theatre; Hayao Miyazaki Press Conference; Creating Ponyo; Ponyo and Fujimoto; The Nursery; Scoring Miyazaki; Producers Perspective: Telling the Story; The Locations of Ponyo; Original Theatrical Trailers; TV Spots; and even an exclusive booklet with statements from the director.

In the Creating Ponyo special, Miyazaki tells us that Ponyo was made for a younger audience, such as five-year-olds, because he wanted to make a movie that was easier than My Neighbor Totoro for young children to understand. Miyazaki believes that five-year-olds are more perceptive than they are able to describe. He later states that Ponyo represents someone who has been released from the constraints of society. By watching this special, we learn how much respect Miyazaki has for children.

The Producer's Perspective is an interview with the producer, Toshio Suzuki. In this special we learn all the steps that go into making a Studio Ghibli film. First Miyazaki and Suzuki review Miyazaki's image boards and decide which is the best. The storyboards are then sent to the animators. He later states that their method hasn't changed over the past 30 years. He finishes by saying that well developed characters are the foundation of any Miyazaki film.

In The Nursery special, Toshio Suzuki states that it was Miyazaki's dream to establish a Studio Ghibli nursery for the employees' children and, during this production, it became a reality. Suzuki goes on by saying that the storyline changed halfway through production from being totally set at the nursery to also taking place at an old folks home and the house on the hill.

This highly rich Ponyo DVD extravaganza is a must have for any Studio Ghibli fan. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18.

Reviewed by Clayton P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 5-18
Description - From the legendary Studio Ghibli, creators of Spirited Away and Ponyo, and Academy Award�-winning* director Hayao Miyazaki, comes a classic tale of magic and adventure for the whole family. When Satsuki and her sister Mei move with their father to a new home in the countryside, they find country life is not as simple as it seems. They soon discover that the house and nearby woods are full of strange and delightful creatures, including a gigantic but gentle forest spirit called Totoro, who can only be seen by children. Totoro and his friends introduce the girls to a series of adventures, including a ride aboard the extraordinary Cat Bus, in this all-ages animated masterpiece featuring the voices of Tim Daly, Lea Salonga, and real-life sisters Dakota and Elle Fanning, in one of their earliest roles.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - It is virtually impossible to not be charmed by this early feature film from Japanese animation master Hayao Miyazaki of the legendary Studio Ghibli. The story of two young sisters befriended by a huge, oval-shaped forest spirit named Totoro while their mother recuperates from an illness is disarming in its mix of the everyday with the fantastical and the director's unique East-meets-West style. The hand-drawn animation is impressionistic and the attention to detail is incredible, with great use of color and challenging elements such as water rendered convincingly. Throughout, the director's particular whimsy and taste for the quirky bubbles to the surface (a giant cat that acts as a bus), traits that Miyazaki would further explore in later works such as Princess Mononoke, Howl's Moving Castle and Ponyo. The Blu-ray DVD of the English-dubbed My Neighbor Totoro features real-life sisters Dakota and Elle Fanning voicing the central protagonists and is pristine in both image and sound. Bonus features include several making-of shorts, extensive storyboards and an exclusive full-color booklet. Rated G, there is a brief consideration of death and a few intense moments. This is animation of the highest order: heartfelt, lovingly crafted, frequently amusing and occasionally poignant. Recommended for ages 6 to 18 and older. 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Michael Fishman, KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror

I love this film, there is no getting around it. It is wonderful. It is loved by everyone is my household, as are all of the Studio Ghibli films and works of Hayao Miyazaki. This particular English dubbed version came out in 2005 from Disney studios. The music in this movie is phenomenal and catchy. Since I've had my two-year-old, I have probably watched this movie several hundred times and, both of us are still sit and sing along with the story like it's the first time we've watched it. The story is so captivating. It's about two young girls that move to the country with their father, while eagerly waiting for their mother to be released from the hospital. On the first day in their new home, they encounter Soot Sprites. After this, you are instantly aware that there is something special about this new home. One day, the younger sister Mei encounters a forest spirit named Totoro and from there things get absolutely magical. Totoro is a giant smiling creature and he used scare my two-year-old quite a bit, but after a while he started to see how kind and caring Totoro is. There is a short film called Mei and the Catbus that serves as a mini sequel to My Neighbor Totoro, but it is only able available at the Studio Ghibli Museum in Japan. I recommend this film for ages 4 to 18 and give it 5 out of 5 stars! It is truly one of our all time favorites! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The anime movie My Neighbor Totoro is cute and funny, yet somehow still realistic. Even though some parts are sad, that adds to the plot and makes the story even better. It starts with two sisters, 4-year-old Mei and 12-year-old Satsuki. When Mei runs off and meets a large, mischievous forest spirit named Totoro, their lives are changed forever.

My Neighbor Totoro is directed by Hayao Miyazaki. Every scene is hand-drawn, unlike modern CGI movies. The rural setting and characters just feel real. In one scene, Mei trips and falls instead of running on. This gives a sense of reality, instead of edited perfection.

The story starts when Mei, Satsuki and their father move to a new house while their mother is in the hospital. They soon discover that their house is inhabited by forest spirits, such as the soot gremlins. Nearby, Totoro lives in a huge camphor tree and a magical, eight-legged cat bus is a normal mode of transportation for them.

After Satsuki and Mei get into an argument, Mei runs away. This part is so heartbreaking! With the help of'll see. The ending is a surprise you'll enjoy!

Hayao Miyazaki has also directed other enjoyable anime movies, such as Kiki's Delivery Service and Spirited Away. Recently, Hayao Miyazaki came out of retirement. I, for one, cannot wait to see another Miyazaki directed film!

My Neighbor Totoro is cute, funny and realistic. However, I feel that something is missing. Totoro sounds like the main character, but he is on the screen for only a few scenes. Therefore, the movie somehow seems incomplete. The fact that I want more from it only proves how captivating it is.

Overall, My Neighbor Totoro is an amazing movie. In 1988, when this movie came out, anime was not that popular. My Neighbor Totoro set off a craze for anime in the U.S. that has not stopped yet. The special features unravel the magic by describing how the characters were created, the real life inspiration for the movie's unique locations and more.

I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 8 to 12. You can view this on DVD or Blu-Ray now. If you enjoy anime, cute and quirky characters, or just a realistic movie, check this out!

Reviewed by Eden T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

Even after 25 years, My Neighbor Totoro remains an instantly watchable animated masterpiece that holds new surprises from every time I watch it.

Satsuki and Mei are sisters who move to the Japanese countryside with their father. The children are fascinated with the quirks of their new house, as well as the vast nature surrounding it. Satsuki goes to school and Mei begins to explore a fantastical world beneath a large tree in the backyard. She meets three little creatures and names one of them Totoro. Mei tells her sister about the adventure, but Satsuki does not believe her. During the next few days, the sisters discover more and more about their neighborhood and adjust to their new way of life.

My Neighbor Totoro effortlessly crafts and develops so many different poignant stories. It is a coming-of-age tale, as well as a story about how we deal with change and about the bond between two siblings. Totoro, his little pals and the world they inhabit add a whole other layer to an already complete narrative. The magical elements intertwine with Satsuki and Mei's story. They bring light to the siblings, during a scary and dark time in their life. The elements of magic add some levity to less joyful parts of the film, giving closure to the audience as to the characters.

The film never reveals too much about Totoro and a lot about him remains a mystery, even after the credits roll. He is so adorably drawn and never feels threatening. He has no dialogue, excluding a few grunts here and there, but is still one of my favorite things about this film. He brings a kind of magic that resonates with you every time he is on screen.

The lesson of My Neighbor Totoro is to never lose faith in what you believe in. Mei's belief in the magic of Totoro never falters and for that, Totoro helps her and Satsuki not just because they are kind souls, but also because they both learn to believe in his magic.

I recommend this film for ages 4 to 18. It appeals to all ages and has practically nothing objectionable for young audiences. I think adults will marvel at the spellbinding animation and wonderful story. I give it 5 out of 5 stars. You need to see this special re-release if you haven't already fallen in love with this film.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 2-5
Description - Welcome to Lily's Driftwood Bay. Lily is six years old and lives with her dad and her best friend, who is a seagull named Gull, in a little hut on the beach. Across the way is Driftwood Bay, a special island that exists in Lily's imagination. Every day the sea washes up a new treasure which sparks Lily's imagination about what might be happening on Driftwood Bay. Join Lily and her friends, Salty Dog, Bull, Nonna, Hatsie, Wee Rabbit and Lord Stag as they sail to Driftwood Bay where wonderful adventures await! Along with each adventure is a valuable lesson learned in each story from learning to tell the truth to saying sorry to asking for help. Embark on new adventures with Lily and friends as they travel to Driftwood Bay
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Watching Lily's Driftwood Bay gives me hope for future generations. Lily is always so kind to those around her and her life is filled with simple adventures that are genuinely interesting, shedding light on the fact that life doesn't always have to be busy to be enjoyable. Lily is an adorable little 5-year-old whom I adore for things like how respectful she is to her father. It is so touching to see a single father raising a daughter represented so positively. In this season, there is an episode called Goodbye Seabird and it is particularly touching and heart-breaking. In this episode, you learn a little bit about Lily's mom. What makes it so special is that not many children's shows acknowledge death, especially the death of a parent. The art is extremely cute. It looks like mixed media using colored pencils and paper cut-outs. The music is charming and blends well with the scenery. I highly recommend this for ages 3 to 6 and give it 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Lily's Driftwood Bay: Season 1 is an amazing DVD. It's a fun way to teach kids about exploring their curiosity and discovering new things. The show takes its viewers into the world of Lily's fantasy. Each episode on this DVD has a great plot that brings you along the adventures in Lily's imagination. These episodes keep it very interesting and there is never a dull moment. It teaches good lessons in fun ways.

Lily's Driftwood Bay focuses on a world in Lily's imagination called Driftwood Bay. Lily finds new treasures on the sea shore everyday that spark her interest. She then travels in her imagination to Driftwood Bay where friends like Salty Dog, Lord Stag and Wee Rabbit help her find out what the object is and what it's used for.

My favorite thing about this show is the accents of the characters. All have British accents, which I love because it gives a different vibe to the show. Each adventure you take with Lily, teaches you a valuable lesson in such a fun way. This is truly a kid's dream film, because it shows a 6-year-old having fun in her own world, just like any other kid. My favorite episode would have to be Starfish in the Sky. That episode is about when Lily finds a telescope on the sea shore and wants to look at a constellation in the sky that looks like a star. At the end of the episode, everybody comes together to see the starfish and it is nice to see all of the characters in one spot. The show is really interesting and shows Lily's day to day life as well as the lives of her friends in Driftwood Bay. My favorite character has to be Salty Dog. He is such an amazing character and is always there for Lily. Salty is the one to drive the boat to take Lily to Driftwood and the one who tells her about the stars in the sky.

The message of this show is to not be afraid to ask others questions about things that interest you, just like Lily who asks her friends questions all the time. I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 8 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. This DVD is available now, so check it out.

Reviewed by Dariana A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 375 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-6 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 3-8
Description - Enjoy volume one of the second season of The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! follows the adventures of 6-year-old best friends, Sally and Nick, as they are whisked off on extraordinary voyages of scientific discovery with the Cat in the Hat. �Thanks to the Thinga-ma-jigger and our friends, exploring has never been more exciting! In this season set, learn everything from space topics like gravity, what causes day and night, the planets, earth's atmosphere to all about the human body like why do we sneeze, how and why the heart beats, why our stomach rumbles, how amazing our skin, and how important each different bone is in our body. The discoveries don't end there though! Embark on more numerous adventures where we learn all about animals such as why animal ears come in many shapes and sizes, how different animals carry their babies, who are the fastest creatures in the world, why male crickets chirp, how polar bears survive the arctic winter, how a snow leopard balances, and so much more! So let's go, go, go, go on an adventure, we're flying with The Cat in the Hat today!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I always loved Dr. Seuss as a kid and it makes me happy to be able to share this The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That DVD with my children. Everyone is my house really loves puns and this show is a puntastic adventure during every episode. Sally and Nick are the 6-year-old main characters and they are the very best of friends. They love going on adventures with The Cat and seeing all of his goofy inventions. The kids are always very polite and ready for anything. They are however, quick to help The Cat see better ways to do things and I love that. A good chunk of this season is science relative and I'm glad that there is a show helping children discover great ways to approach "adults" (The Cat) and, either ask for help or offer up their knowledge on the subject matter. The animation is fun and eye-catching, the sound effects and music are kooky. I highly recommend this DVD for ages 3 to 7 and give it 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Cat in the Hat: Season 2 portrays a dream-like world where learning is adventurous and engaging! Each episode takes you on a ride to a variety of places, some are even out of this world. The animation brings you into the realm of Dr. Seuss. I did not want to leave.

The story follows Sally (Alexa Torrington) and Nick (Jacob Ewaniuk) traveling through everyday life, curious and eager to understand the ways of the world. The Cat (Martin Short) always pops in at the right time to help them find the answers to their dilemmas. Together they hop on the Thingamajigger and fly on adventures to discover wonders.

Martin Short, the voice of the Cat, uses the perfect accent and voice to compliment the Cat's personality. He emphasizes certain words to achieve the goofiness in his voice. Alexa Torrington and Jacob Ewaniuk are the voices of the children, Sally and Nick, who grasp the innocence and youthful spirit by their voices. Rob Tinkler voices Fish, Thing 1 and Thing 2. The way he changes the tone and pitch of the various voices is quite unique. The voices for Thing 1 and 2 are high pitched and humorous, while the voice for Fish is lower and more serious.

The animation offers a portal into Dr. Seuss's world. The houses are crooked, yet appealing. The background hills, bushes and trees are slim and tall. The abstract Thingamajigger flies through the sky with its misshapen helicopter blades and bright red and orange colors.

My favorite part of this show is the Cat's personality. He brings fun to learning and, when explaining different conceptions, he adds a sense of humor. For example, when explaining that the brain receives and sends signals from the nose, a phone rings in his hat asking for his nose. He is clumsy and modest about being smart. He makes the children laugh and ends each episode with a joke.

The message of this DVD is learning can happen anywhere and is always an adventure. I give this DVD 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 10. It is available now so, be sure to check it out.

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

The Cat in the Hat episodes are very colorful, exciting and educational. This season is no exception! Everything is upbeat and entertaining plus, you learn lots of new things. Even I learned some knew things from these episodes!

Season 2 is mostly about science topics. These episodes have lots of songs, jokes and puns, and they can travel anywhere. They can shrink or enlarge themselves to learn about everything. Also, the characters are extremely energetic, which makes you feel energized and uplifted because they are having such a good time.

The voice acting is amazing. All of the characters laugh so much and have a great time. They all sound so happy and amazed at everything they learn. Martin Short, as the voice of The Cat is perfect. His laughs are so contagious and he laughs so often. The children, Sally and Nick (Alexa Torrington and Jacob Ewaniuk) are just as ecstatic and energetic. They laugh a lot as well and are very positive kids. Short, Torrington and Ewaniuk all have wonderful singing voices that enhance the episodes.

The animation in these episodes is bright, colorful and detailed. The animation perfectly suits the educational side of these stories, because you can learn about the object, while seeing it clearly. The music and songs are quite clever and pleasing. The music is a vital part to these episodes.

My favorite episode is "Bounce" because, in that episode they teach many different things besides the topic of rubber. It is interesting to learn everything related to and around rubber.

The message of this DVD is to go outside on adventures, after first asking your parents permission (of course) as Sally and Nick do, and to enjoy what's around you. The Cat goes to Sally and Nick's and makes them happy every time by teaching them about their surroundings and showing them around. These episodes inspire you to learn more and shows how learning about new things is fun and exciting.

I give this DVD 5 out to 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 13. It is available now so, definitely go check it out.

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 220 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - In the epic finale to The Maze Runner Saga, Thomas leads his group of escaped Gladers on their final and most dangerous mission yet. To save their friends, they must break into the legendary last city, a WCKD controlled labyrinth that may turn out to be the deadliest maze of all. Anyone who makes it out alive will get the answers to the questions the Gladers have been asking since they first arrived in the maze. Will Thomas and the crew make it out alive? Or will Ava Paige get her way?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This science fiction film grabbed my attention starting at the beginning because of its very interesting plot and fascinating storyline. I was riveted to see what would happen at the end. I couldn't take my eyes off the screen because of the combination of topics that I love seeing in movies - the action scenes, the various unpredictable events, character's journeys, sentimental scenes. Since all of those points drew me in, I wanted to finally find out what would be the outcome of the movie. I was excitedly waiting for this movie to come out since it is the third film in the Maze Runner series. I watched the previous films when I found out about this sequel and was counting the days for this one to finally arrive.

The storyline follows Thomas leading some Gladers on their most dangerous mission yet, which could change everything. To save their friends, they must break into the Last City, a controlled labyrinth that could be the deadliest adventure yet. Anyone who makes it out alive and in good state will get answers to the questions that the Gladers have been asking since their arrival in the maze.

My favorite scene is when Brenda is helping a group of kids escape from the Last City and saving them from being in a critical situation. I love this scene because she is hiding in a bus with all the kids, waiting for the officers to leave so she can run away. But, the second she starts the bus, all the officers notice and start chasing her. Eventually, she finds herself trapped in a situation where she is surrounded and it seemed as if there is no way out. She steps down from the bus and confronts the officers, which seems like a stupid choice. Then, something happens which is completely a surprise. The solution is surprising and impressively successful. I love how intelligent and practical the creators and writers of this film are in making this and other scenes with unpredictable solutions possible. Once again, they leave me with my mouth open. I was so shocked that they were so logical in figuring out a solution that I couldn't.

The important message in this film is to always stay positive when looking at a situation. Sometimes the impossible has another way to solve it. In this film, the characters experience extremely difficult problems and situation. What sets them apart is that they never give up.

I recommend this film for ages 13 to 18 as well as adults and rate it 5 out of 5 stars. This opens in theaters January 26, 2018 so go check it out. Reviewed by Alejandra G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This film is full of action from beginning to end. During the production of this film in 2016, Dylan O'Brien was severely injured on set. Because of that, the film was delayed and is just now being released. I'm so sorry about Dylan's accident and believe that the wait was worth it, as I love this movie.

This is the third and final installment of the Maze Runner trilogy. Thomas and his friends head to the last standing city to save their friend, Minho and take down the Government Association known as WCKD.

I'm quite a fan of the Maze Runner books, so I can vouch for the accuracy of this movie. Quite a bit of the story is different from the book. Even the plot of saving Minho isn't in the book. He is with the group in the book. However, all the major events are still the same as both stories involve taking down WCKD.

This movie is fast moving and heart racing. In almost every scene something exciting is happening. The film barely gives you time to rest. I feel like this keeps you on edge and it works. During some scenes I tensed up, with my fists clenched. The action is actually very effectively exciting. There are tons of explosions, and fire and gunshots. And they are all so cool. The special effects are really impressive.

This film is a dystopian story. The reason the world ends in this story is an illness known as the "Flare" that turns people into zombie-like creatures. The makeup used for the creatures, known as Cranks, is outstanding. Here's a shout out to the entire makeup department.

The acting is also really good. Dylan O'Brien, who plays Thomas and Thomas Brodie-Sangster, who plays Newt, have incredible performances. I will not spoil what happens, but one specific performance from them had me in straight up tears.

Also, the city where most of the film takes place, known as Last City, has a very neat design. It looks intimidating, yet beautiful. It felt like Los Angeles, but darker. I'm curious if the director, Wes Ball, plans to do the prequels, as there are two prequels. I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. It comes out in theaters January 26, 2018 so be sure to check it out.

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

Based upon the novel, The Death Cure by James Dashner, The Maze Runner the Death Cure is the third and final film in the Maze Runner trilogy. It is a very satisfying conclusion to the series and wraps up most questions for fans. This film is very fun and entertaining. The one thing that disappointed me was the length of time since the last film, The Maze Runner the Scorch Trials. It came out September 2015, so you may need a little refresher course prior to watching the final film.

My favorite character is Newt, played by Thomas Brodie-Sangster. I have cheered for Newt during the whole trilogy as he brings so much life to the entire film. His character has depth and passion, but in a light-hearted way. I find him very relatable and, with-out giving away any spoilers, his character will touch you deeply during this final film.

The bond of friendship is a strong theme throughout the trilogy, but nothing has been as powerful as it is in Maze Runner the Death Cure. I love how the screenwriter, T.S. Nowlin, pushes each character to their limits, testing their abilities and gives viewers insight into their mindset and true vulnerabilities.

As in the previous two films, the cinematography is amazing. While the backdrop is futuristic, you do not have the feeling that everything is overly CGI. Even the fight scenes are pretty realistic. I find it interesting that the whole film was shot in Cape Town, South Africa.

Maze Runner the Death Cure is rated PG-13 for intense sci-fi violence and action. There is some language, but not much. If you have been a fan of the Maze Runner series, Maze Runner the Death Cure will not disappoint. With a running time of 2 hours, 22 minutes, it is a bit long, but there are no drag times. You'll remain entertained the whole time. I recom-mend this film for ages 13 to 18 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. It opens in theaters January 26, 2018 so look for it.

Reviewed by Tristan T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

Maze Runner: The Death Cure is an action-packed thrill ride and the final chapter in the Maze Runner franchise. Although it never quite escapes the burden of underdeveloped storytelling, loyal fans of the franchise will wish to see how the saga is brought to a close.

In this final chapter, Thomas is going to the main headquarters of WKCD - the organization that has imprisoned kids immune to a virus wiping out humanity - to discover the truth behind its practices and save his friends. He will need to work with his fair share of friends and enemies to bring WCKD's wrath to an end. You will be lost if you haven't seen the first two films or read the books. The Death Cure picks up right where the first two left off with no recap.

My favorite part of this film is the opening action sequence, an intense rescue mission from a speeding train. All the characters are brought back in good ways and the action feels amusing and sometimes highly absurd, but still entertaining. This scene represents exactly what I was expecting and hoping for from this film: a fun action adventure film that would be an enjoyable way to spend two hours.

After an exciting start, the film's pace starts to falter. The Maze Runner: The Death Cure has many of the components to craft a solid finish to this tale: a likable cast of characters, some surprising twists and dazzling stunts. It has good action scenes, but they begin to blur together with little furthering of the plot or character development along the way. My favorite characters in the first two films felt like faces in the crowd. For example, Newt had brought levity to the generally dreary plot of these films. Here, he is left to brood like his fellow teens. The Maze Runner: The Death Cure introduces too many new characters and subplots to cleanly close out these films and seems to rely on explosions to tell a story more than a well-crafted plot and dialogue.

I recommend this one for ages 13 to 18 for some gross imagery and brief violent moments, as well as some moments of peril. I give it 2 out of 5 stars and recommend it mostly to the Maze Runner diehards. It arrives in theatres January 26, 2018 so put it on your calendar. Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 4-15
Description - Paddington is happily settled with the Brown family in Windsor Gardens, where he has become a popular member of the community, spreading joy and marmalade wherever he goes. While searching for the perfect present for his beloved Aunt Lucy's 100th birthday, Paddington spots a unique pop-up book in Mr. Gruber's antique shop, and embarks upon a series of odd jobs to buy it. But when the book is stolen, it's up to Paddington and the Browns to unmask the thief.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This sequel to the hit family film, Paddington delivers in all the right places and truly lives up to its predecessor and even surpasses the 2014 film in many ways. Paddington 2, like the first one, is definitely a family film filled with many morals and messages, generally surrounded by unique jokes and fun adventures. To add conflict to the story, there are some dramatic scenes, but the film manages to always stay kid-friendly.

The movie picks up sometime after the first film. Paddington the bear still lives happily with the Brown family in London. By now, he has a daily routine and has become friendly with the whole neighborhood. In a few days, his aunt will have her 100th birthday. Paddington decides to get her a perfect present. Little does Paddington know that the present he has chosen actually contains a big secret and gets stolen. Paddington is blamed for the theft and sent to jail. Now two conflicts emerge, Paddington must fit in prison and the Brown family must figure out how to get him out of jail.

Paddington's realism really stands out. He clearly still contains character-like features with big brown eyes and heavenly fluffy fur, but he essentially fits-in properly with his surroundings. Not only does the special effects' team deserve credit for this, but the actors deserve double kudos for performing so realistically with a character that doesn't really exist. Adding a superstar as Hugh Grant also brings the film to a completely new level of goodness.

Rare for a sequel, the story stays original and separate from the last film while still maintaining the good parts of the previous story. The humor becomes almost slapstick at times, and other times it's purely situational and always results in a laugh. Paddington as a character really pulls at the heartstrings of the audience, both because of a well-written script and a bear who's designed to be adorable in every way. My favorite scene starts when Paddington gets into jail. He, of course, does not fit in as a well-mannered, kind bear. After proving his skill at making marmalade sandwiches for everyone, the prison stops looking like the one in Shawshank Redemption and begins to look like a cute bed and breakfast you'd pay to stay at. This really shows a large amount of irony due to the fact that many gruff convicts become well-mannered and kind. This scene not only demonstrates the power of the humor in Paddington 2, but truly brings up all of the main characteristics of Paddington as a character.

I recommend this film for ages 7 to 18. Surprisingly, in the audience, there were more adults laughing than kids, while the kids were simply fixed on the realism and adventures of Paddington. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars for being an outstanding family film that truly outdoes its predecessor and leaves you wanting more. It opens nationwide in theaters on January 12, 2018 so, be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 1
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Paddington 2 seamlessly blends heart and comedy for a truly charming family film. This sequel revisits the title character, a precocious young bear living in London as part of the Brown family. As the movie opens, Aunt Lucy is celebrating her birthday in darkest Peru and Paddington is struggling to find a suitable gift to send to her. He settles on a pop-up book of London at a local antique shop and takes on a series of sometimes hilarious odd jobs to pay for it. One night, the book is stolen. Paddington is accused of the theft and sent to prison, but the real culprit is Phoenix Buchanan, a narcissistic actor who craves the spotlight and wants to use the book's value to fund his one-man-show. Paddington sets out to clear his name, while the Browns try to prove that Phoenix is the real criminal.

Paddington 2 is a warm fuzzy blanket of a film. Its title character is a symbol of kindness in a world that needs more of it. He never gives up and always believes in the best in those around him. I love coming back to Paddington's London and being reacquainted with the Brown family and their quirks. The cheerful tone of this film radiates throughout. The lesson of Paddington 2 is be kind to others, always, and its timing could not be better.

Paddington 2 surpasses the first Paddington film in many ways. It brings back endearing characters and everything you love about them, while introducing memorable new ones as well. I love how, once again the modern take on the widely loved story of Paddington Bear stays true to the character while still telling an original story.

Hugh Grant is very good as Phoenix Buchanan. Grant embodies Phoenix's charisma and sly humor. It is nice to see an actor typically known for romantic comedies go to a more villainous place to play this sinister has-been actor who will do anything to be famous again. Grant's top moments are his most bizarre. Be sure to stay for the credits for one of his best.

My favorite character in this film is Knuckles McGinty, the prison chef played by Brendan Gleeson. Gleeson subtly and comically shows us the intensity and warmth of his character. Knuckles's anger and pessimism is a nice foil to Paddington's constant glowing positivity. Gleeson also illustrates how Paddington brings out the softer sides of those around him.

I recommend this film to ages 4 to 15 and adults will love its positive attitude. I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars for putting a smile on my face and recreating the magic of the original and then some. It opens nationwide in theaters on January 12, 2018 so be sure to check it out.

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

This film is hilarious and made me cry a cry of joy and also of sadness, multiple times. It is amazing to watch live characters bond with an imaginary, animated bear. Even though there's not actually a bear there, you can feel the love within the family.

The film starts off with a little flash back showing how Paddington was saved from falling off the waterfall when he was a cub, by Uncle Pastuzo and Aunt Lucy. They adopted him and raised him as if he was their own son. Then it returns to present time. Paddington wants to get the perfect gift for Aunt Lucy on her 100th Birthday and decides on a present, but it is expensive. He works hard to earn enough money to buy the gift. One night while he is walking past the store where the gift is, a thief breaks into the store and steals it. Paddington chases after the burglar, but when the police arrive they assume that he is the thief. Paddington is sentenced to 10 years in prison even though he didn't commit the crime. His family tries to prove his innocence, but they don't have much evidence.

Paddington (Ben Whishaw) is supposed to be a young bear. Ben Wishaw, who does his voice, doesn't sound like a young bear to me. He sounds more like a polite and proper man. Even though he doesn't sound young, his voice matches Paddington's personality, particularly because Paddington is very polite, kind and sweet.

The animation for this film is very realistic. Paddington interacts with objects that aren't animated, which makes him seem like he is actually there. Paddington looks very realistic with very detailed fur, eyes and feet. My favorite part of this film are all of the jokes throughout it. They are so funny and sarcastic. The whole audience was laughing together. Everyone understood the jokes, adults and children both, which is always great.

The moral of this story is to be kind and positive, so that life will be kind and positive to you. Throughout all the hardships that Paddington goes through, he stays positive, remains kind and eventually everything becomes right in the end. Paddington 2 is such an amazing film to watch with your whole family. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 18, as well as adults. It opens in theaters nationwide on January 12, 2018 so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Jolleen m., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 4-15 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 3-7
Description - Dive into adventure with your favorite underwater explorers, the Octonauts! Join brave Captain Barnacles, daredevil ex-pirate, Kwazii, and medic Peso Penguin, along with the other Octonauts as they explore the world's oceans, rescue the creatures who live there and protect their habitats - above and below the waves! On this exciting DVD, join the Octonauts as they journey to the Everglades to help Tweak's dad, Ranger Marsh, track down several invasive species - including a Burmese Python and her babies! The adventures continue with six more exciting underwater missions!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I love The Octonauts. This series is such a cute, effective way to convey real world issues, such as pollution, to children without making it seem wildly scary and overbearing. I genuinely adore watching these little creatures, led by their fearless leader Captain Barnacles who take on so many problems and have so much fun doing it. Tweak and Peso are very cute little characters and I personally love Peso because I am a penguin person. Who wouldn't want to have a medic penguin? In each episode, we meet new creatures and learn all about their habitats and how we can help to keep them safe and happy. My favorite parts by far are The Octonaut Creature Reports. These reports are mini, in-depth views into the creatures The Octonauts encounter along the way in their adventures. The music featured in these episodes is fun, informative and catchy! The animation is simple and my two-year-old really seems to love the style. This show is great for ages 2 to 6 and I give it 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror.

Octonauts: The Great Swamp is appealing to the watch, and educational! The show effectively teaches kids about social issues such as invasive species and forest fires without making it scary. The characters are cute, and easy to follow. Each episode has a distinct goal to achieve, whether finding a lost flamingo in the swamp, or rescuing a family of Burmese pythons! The Octonauts, led by Captain Barnacles, work tirelessly to solve the mission together, focusing on the clues they find to guide them to a solution. They are led by the Octonaut motto, "Explore, rescue, protect!" The creature reports produce a fun and catchy song about each animal in the mission giving viewers more information, but the opportunity to learn through song. It's a fun, and educational feature! I recommend it for ages 2 to 7 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Kristin H., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This is a fun, educational, adventure-filled DVD with animals. The voice acting and plots bring a unique feel unlike other animated work. This is sure to be a hit with kids who love animation.

The story follows the adventures of an underwater exploring crew, the Octonauts which includes Captain Barnacles (Simon Greenall), Lieutenant Kwazii (Rob Rackstraw), Medic Peso (Wayne Greyson), Biologist Shellington (Keith Wickham), and Founder Grimpoteuthis (Keith Wickham). They are enticed by many adventures including the likes of returning animals to their homes, rescuing baby animals and finding the right turf for a group of hippos. Meanwhile, they discover new information about all the animals they are investigating.

Simon Greenall, as Barnicles, presents a commanding presence in leading the Octonauts, especially when choosing what is a priority. He is my favorite character because of this. Rob Rackstrawis, as Kwazii, is a fun member of the team who loves to help the animals and learn more about them. It is also interesting to see her reunion with her father who plays a big part in the first adventure. Wayne Greyson, as Peso, is an incredibly smart medic who wants to use his skills to save lives. Keith Wickham, as Shellington and Grimpteuthis, portrays two different characters who are of great importance to the team.

Darragh O'Connell directs this show with a Star Trek-esque tone of discovery. My favorite scene is the chase from the hippos because of the creative ways in which the Octonauts flee. It also feels like an extremely urgent scene. My only problem with the show is that, at times, the episodes are repetitive such as when they use the same plots with different animals.

The message of the show is to protect all animals and the ecosystem. Despite being treated unfairly by the animals, the Octonauts work around that to help them. They even give food to the hungry carnivores who threaten the ecosystem, while protecting the other animals. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 12. This DVD is available now so be sure to check it out.

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

Octonauts: The Great Swamp Search is like Mission: Impossible for younger audiences! There is danger and action at every corner and unique adventures. The music is engaging and made my heart race, adding to the thrilling effect. Along with the gripping stories, each episode cleverly incorporates interesting fun facts casually into the Octonauts' conversations.

The story follows the Octonauts - Captain Barnacles, Kwazii, Peso Penguin, Dashi Dog, Shellington, Tweak and Tunip who always come to the rescue. Each episode follows an entertaining and fresh storyline where the Octonauts face peril and must use teamwork and problem solving to save the day. They help a myriad of animals and learn much from their adventures.

Every species has a distinctive voice and accent. This adds to the element of diversity and uniqueness. Simon Greenall as Captain Barnacles makes it obvious through his authoritative voice that he is the captain. Kwazii (Rob Rackstraw) is a pirate and incorporates an interesting accent to enhance his character and add humor.

The animation is quite realistic, particularly the water, shadows, clouds and colors during different times of the day. The water moves so smoothly that I felt I could reach into their world and touch it. Throughout many scenes, reflections can be seen in the water and are extremely naturalistic. The clouds move subtly across different shots and the movement is memorable. Shadows of the trees, animals and the Octonauts are beautifully portrayed. In the shadows, underwater and during different times of day, the colors change intensity which boosts the sublime qualities of the animation.

The animated cinematography is special. There are many wide shots that show the Octonauts from afar and then zoom in, allowing the viewer a chance to enjoy the scenery, light and depth of the animation. The 3D effects create a world that doesn't seem so far from reality even though it is. It immersed me in the experience while learning about all the different species.

My favorite part is how fun facts are blended into the conversations. Even though it doesn't feel as you are leaning something, you learn many different things about hippos, crawfish and a multitude of other animals. The messages of this show is about teamwork, putting others before yourself and being kind to everyone. I give this DVD 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 12. It is available on DVD now so, be sure to check it out. It's great stealth learning.

By Sahiba K., KIDSFIRST! Film Critic, Age 15
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-7 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: SERIES, AGES 5-12
Description - Join Angie and friends as they deal with everything from a remote control dance outfit to gravity to moon rocks and more! Hoping to get on a dance show, Von Bolt wears a remote-control dance outfit. But if he let's someone else dance for him, is he really a winner? Next, the Secret Lab Kids are ready to demo their new science song for web entrepreneur, Mook Zookerboom, when he learns that a satellite is coming down out of orbit, panics and heads for the airport. So the team must gather some data on gravity to convince him to return. Then, when Von Bolt accidentally destroys the museum's new moon rock, the Secret Lab Kids must find a way to replace it. Guided by fun-loving Edison, Angie and friends will show kids just how fun science can be!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This DVD is quite appealing and engaging. The most appealing thing about this title are the characters. They are relatable, appealing and funny. The show teaches different science facts. However, it doesn't have much in terms of comedy. A bit of balance between fun and learning would be nice. For me the learning feels a bit heavy. Also, the animation is a bit choppy at times. As far as design, I really love that the characters represent different cultures and I enjoyed that some of the characters have different accents. The vocabulary is engaging and suitable for its intended audience. The science terms introduced in each story are clear and easy to understand. Lots of kids can benefit from watching this DVD and it may ignite their curiosity to further inquiry. I did feel that the pace is somewhat on the slow side. Because it is aimed at older kids, the pace could be a bit faster. The characters act in positive ways and there are definitely consequences to bad actions. For example, in the first episode when the kids build a device to help the robot character win a dance competition, they soon realize that they shouldn't do that, because that would be cheating. Then, when another robot contestant steals the device, she gets in trouble. This show has lots of problem solving and encourages critical thinking. The kids have to solve a problem using science in every story. The characters learn as the story goes and even have to research science facts to solve their problem. The show definitely supports inquiry and investigation. I can see kids wanting to dig deeper into the science exposed in each episode. The DVD was pretty straight forward and easy to navigate. The menu is simple. The special features included a number of music videos. They are cute, but I'm not sure that older kids would enjoy them all that much. I recommend it for ages 7 to 11 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. I think kids will enjoy and learn from it! Reviewed by Martha S. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Jurors.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: Rock It to the Moon DVD is full of episodes about a group of kid scientists who work together on adventures in Thomas Edison's secret lab. The group finds problems around their town and solves them by using scientific facts. I always enjoy these episode packs because I like science and these teach us about chemicals and discoveries I didn't know about before. After every episode, there is a song (written by Stefanie and Ron Fair) about the episode that is sung by dancing robots. The songs are very repetitive and younger kids would like that.

The four kid scientists are, Angie (Phillipa Alexander) a modern female version of Thomas Edison, JD (Adam Long), Angie's brother who thinks well under pressure, Kent (Shash Hira), who has all kinds of phobias and loves all applications of science, Nicky, a scientific genius who is secretly jealous of Angie and, of course, Thomas Edison (Livingston Taylor), a hologram of the scientist who is the kids' inspiring mentor who doesn't solve their problems for them, but instead offers advice and guidance. In the lab, they have Edison's projector which makes his hologram and a virtual reality machine which opens a portal that sends them to a different scientist from the past in each episode. The scientist teaches them something that will help them solve their current problem. These lessons teach real life facts which I like. This DVD is about a few of their problems that they solve using all they know about science.

Episodes on this DVD include, Dancing Machines, Murphy's Law of Gravity, Rock it to the Moon, Act your Stone Age, Von Drop-Out, Freaky Furry, The Monster Not Under the Bed and Nanobots Byte. My favorite is Freaky Furry, which is about Angie accidently switching brains with her dog during a test. The group must find out what happened and switch their brains back. I like this because it is the only one about the human body, which I find fascinating and also because I like dogs. My favorite character is Von Bolts, the robot lab assistant, because he is a funny, indestructible machine who is featured in all the episodes.

The message of this show is that if you work together, you can do anything. I recommend this DVD for ages 4 through 10 because it is funny and very educational but easy to understand. I rate this DVD 4 out of 5 stars because I like to learn facts and some parts are funny. This DVD/Blu-ray is available now so go check it out. This series has its own website called, which you should also look at because it has a lot of added features.

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

This DVD offers a entertaining set of episodes that allows everyone to have a better understanding of science.

Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: Rock it to the Moon is an animated series of science themed episodes. The show is about a group of friends who find the famous scientist Thomas Edison's secret lab. Edison has made a secret lab where he created a virtual version of himself and a robot named Van Bolt. The friends embark on fun adventures with one another while, at the same time, learning valuable scientific knowledge of the world around them.

I was happily surprised by this DVD. I expected these episodes to be very child-like and not very humorous. I was very wrong! The episodes kept me interested the entire time. The episodes are rather short, which is fantastic because it holds your attention the entire time. They are silly, but in a way that got me laughing. These episodes are definitely aimed for much younger audiences than me. I did not think I was going to appreciate the humor like a young child would. My expectations were definitely wrong. I absolutely love the jokes and funny characters. The humor gives these episodes spirit.

This DVD is perfect for anyone interested in science. What surprised me the most about it is that I didn't even know most of the science related topics included. They discuss Murphy's Law of Gravity, fossils and many more. It is very important for children shows to be both informative and entertaining and this one definitely incorporates both ideas beautifully. Each episode teaches kids that science is actually fun. Perhaps one day it can inspire the next generation of scientists.

I absolutely adore the music in this DVD. There are a total of eight episodes and, at the end of each episode there is a music video about science. The music is written and produced by Stefanie and Ron Fair. I am still humming some of the tunes. The music is very catchy and the music videos are entertaining to watch. In the music videos there are always five robots who are do something crazy. In one episode, they float around space and orbit the Earth. The five robots give the music videos a unique touch.

I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 9 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. This DVD is available now so go check it out!

Reviewed by Talia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

This is a very educational show. Its bright, colorful characters and high-level facts make it attractive to most ages. It manages to be both informative and entertaining.

The DVD has eight episodes of the show that follow Angie, Kent, JD and Nicky as they go on adventures using science. The episodes include Dancing Machine, Murphy's law of Gravity, Rock it to the Moon, Act Your Stone Age, Von Drop-Out, Freaky Furry, The Monster Not Under the Bed and Nanobots Byte. In each episode, the Secret Lab Kids, as they're called, use their hologram projector to visit a scientist from the past. He tells them a bit about his most famous discovery, which gives them a hint to solve the major problem of the episode. I like their decision to use some lesser known scientists such as Thales, instead of just the most famous scientists like Albert Einstein. However, they could have been more diverse in who they chose. Other than the kids, there are no female scientists in the entire DVD.

My favorite episode is Von Drop-Out. Von Bolt is my favorite characters on this show. I like him because he is funny and interesting. In this episode, he feels underappreciated and quits. He gets a new job as a rescue robot and the Secret Lab Kids try to find him so they can get him to come back. I like this episode because its explanation of the science of proportion and measurement is easy to understand and is used in the most practical way that could be used by anyone in the real world.

I like how educational this series is. It teaches science, history, technology, math, vocabulary and much more. Unfortunately, this isn't the main thing children might take from these episodes. The educational values are almost over-shadowed by the wacky unexplained, convenient items the Secret Lab Kids have.

Von Bolt is voiced by Dan Russell, whose voice I really enjoy. I like how he manages to show emotion but still keep the voice robotic. The music is almost better than the show itself. After each episode there is a song. These songs teach more science than the stories, teach it faster, are equally entertaining and are amazingly well produced. They, are by far, my favorite part of this DVD and the show as a whole.

Overall I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 through 14. Younger kids might not understand the science, but they will still probably still find it entertaining. It is available on DVD now so, go check it out.

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

Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - Dive into adventure with your favorite underwater explorers, the Octonauts! Join brave Captain Barnacles, daredevil ex-pirate, Kwazii, medic Peso Penguin and the rest of the crew, as they explore the world s oceans, rescue the creatures who live there and protect their habitats above and below the waves! Based on the richly imaginative books by Meomi, this series combines immersive visuals and submersive humor to transport young children into a world that is both real and fantastic, full of mysteries to unravel and surprises around every corner. So come aboard the Octopod for 52 exciting missions!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Octonauts: Season 1 definitely grows on child and adult alike. The stories teach about various underwater creatures and the importance as a team to help others. I am sure this DVD will be a favorite for children because of the great animation, excellent characters, catchy songs and brightly colored underwater locations. It will definitely keep their attention and parents will not be bored either. The episodes offer a lot of educational information about sea animals. I love how it doesn't make it seem as if the carnivorous sea animals, such as sharks, are bad creatures. It is simply what they do and it plays very well, so children don't even notice that the carnivores are different from the non carnivores. Its refreshing to have a series that does not play good against the bad and makes it more about helping each other. Our favorite part is at the end of each segment when they show videos or pictures of what the sea animals looks like. That way the children learn not just what the creature can do while watching the show, but also what they really look like. Now when we go to the aquarium, we will be able to spot these different sea creatures. The animation on this DVD is broadcast quality with a color palette that is bright enough to catch little ones' attention. My kids greatly enjoyed playing with the toys that came with this DVD. It was a nice treat for them to have and help them remember what they learned in the show by play acting with the characters. Our whole family learned something new about the ocean from each episode, especially from the creature reports. They are now looking forward to going to the aquarium to see how many sea creatures they can find! The overall message of this show is about having fun while working together as a team, especially while exploring the seas. I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 through 8.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Octonauts have always been one of my favorite TV/DVD series. The Octonauts are selfless and brave, human-like animals and have great teamwork. Aside from the multiple wonderful messages that they teach in every episode, they also have detailed animation.

The Octonauts live in the ocean in their octopus-like structure called the Octopod. Whenever there is trouble in the ocean, the team of Octonauts does not hesitate to help anyone in need. The main characters include Captain Barnacles (the bear who leads the team), Kwazi (the pirate-like cat) and Peso (the timid penguin). At the end of the episode, there is always a Creature Report, a song giving facts about one of the creatures that they saw or helped during the mission.

Captain Barnacles (Ross Breen) sounds like a bear who has everything under control. He has a very deep, commanding and strong voice which implies that he is the boss, and he is. Peso (Paul Panting) has a very soft, sometimes shaky and uncertain voice. Peso is a happy, but conservative penguin, and you can hear that through his voice. You can also easily hear when he is scared.

The animation is detailed and shows the ocean as a beautiful place with the wide variety of colors. Another thing that I like about this series is that on the Octonauts team, there are different species of animals aboard the Octopod. They work together great as a team, even though they are all different. It shows that even though you don't have many similarities, you can still work together successfully and be friends. This is just one of the great messages taught in this series.

My favorite episode is "Undersea Storm." During this episode, a storm is heading near the reef where the Octonauts live. A strong current sweeps up a baby lobster, but Kwazi saves it and returns him to its family and they are very grateful. Later, Kwazi crashes and can't get his submarine to work. The whole family of lobsters shows up to help him out. Everyone makes it safe inside before the storm hits. This is my favorite episode because it teaches the morals of The Golden Rule. It is very clever how they present this moral.

There are multiple different messages throughout this DVD. All are really important and sometimes are overlooked. I love that The Octonauts offer entertainment to young children while teaching them good lessons.

This is an awesome DVD to watch and I give it 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 3 to 11. Maybe it could even be for 12 and 13-year-olds, because I really enjoyed watching it myself. It is available now on DVD so, be sure to check it out.

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

Octonauts is one of my favorite TV shows. I've been watching it my whole life, since I was a baby! This Season 1 DVD is filled with 52 episodes, which is over eleven hours of the best Octonauts adventures. In Octonauts: Season 1, everything that happens takes place underneath the ocean! That is my favorite thing about this show. It takes me on an underwater adventure every time. I get to live my dream of being aquatic!

Captain Barnacles leads his team. Tweak Bunny, Pero Penguin, Kwazii Kitten, Shellington Sea Otter and Dashi Dog all appear in Season 1. Every character is a different type of animal. They are have unique personalities and special traits that make them interesting. All of these traits make the Octonauts team a good group of characters that can handle any kind of problem that comes their way.

This is a fun series! The stories always move forward without a dull moment! Each episode keeps my attention and I am totally entertained. Nothing scary ever happens and that makes me feel relaxed and interested while I'm watching. I can watch one episode after another.

All of the episodes on this DVD have positive messages for kids about helping others or teamwork. I think kids can also learn a lot about the ocean and all of the sea creatures who live there. This is an educational show, but it doesn't feel like it. Those kinds of shows are the best! I have two favorite things about these shows. The Octopod is really cool. It is the big underwater spaceship that they travel around in and it is also the headquarters for the crew. It looks like a big mechanical octopus.

My other favorite thing about the show are the Vegimals. They are so silly and interesting. Think of putting together a vegetable and an animal and you get a Vegimal! For example, if you take a half-salmon and a half-jalepe�o, you have just made a Salape�o. The Vegimals are very cute and funny.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 10. It's calm and colorful and it looks like little bath toys that a baby would like to play with. I think even the smallest child would be mesmerized watching these shows. This is available on DVD now, so go check it out!

Reviewed by Izzy C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

The Octonauts have always been one of my favorite TV/DVD series. The Octonauts are selfless and brave human-like animals and they have great teamwork. Aside from the multiple wonderful messages that they teach in the episodes, the episodes also have detailed animations.

The Octonauts live in the ocean in their octopus like structure called the Octopod. Whenever there is trouble in the ocean, the team of Octonauts will not hesitate to help anyone in need. The main Octonauts include Captain Barnacles (the bear who leads the team), Kwazi (the pirate-like cat) and Peso (the timid penguin). At the end of the episode, there is always a Creature Report, a song giving facts about one of the creatures that they saw/helped during the mission.

Captain Barnacles (Ross Breen) sounds like a bear who has everything under control. He has a very deep, commanding and strong voice which implies that he is the boss, and he is. Peso (Paul Panting) has a very soft, sometimes shaky and uncertain voice. Peso is a happy, but conservative penguin and you can hear that in his voice. You can also easily hear when he is scared.

The animation for these episodes is detailed and shows the ocean as a beautiful place with a wide variety of colors. Another thing that I like about this series is that, on the team of Octonauts, there are different species of animals aboard the Octopod. They work together great as a team even though they are all different. It shows that even though you don't have much similarities, you can still work together successfully and be friends. This is just one of the great messages that The Octonauts teach.

My favorite episode is "Undersea Storm". During this episode, a storm is heading near the reef the Octonauts live in. A strong current sweeps up a baby lobster, but Kwazi saves it and returns him to his family and they are very grateful. Later, Kwazi crashes and can't get his submarine to work. The whole family of lobsters shows up and helps him out. Everyone makes it safe inside before the storm hits. This is my favorite episode because it teaches the moral of the golden rule. It is very clever how they present this moral in this episode.

There are multiple different messages throughout the DVD. All of the messages are really important and sometimes are overlooked. I love that The Octonauts give entertainment to young children and teach them good lessons at the same time.

The Octonauts Season 1 is an awesome series to watch and I give it 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend this film for the ages of 3 to 11. Maybe it could even be for 12 and 13 year olds, because I really enjoyed watching it myself. Be sure to check this series out on DVD and on TV now!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 700 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - Katharine Graham is the first female publisher of a major American newspaper -- The Washington Post. With help from editor Ben Bradlee, Graham races to catch up with The New York Times to expose a massive cover-up of government secrets that spans three decades and four U.S. presidents. Together, they must overcome their differences as they risk their careers -- and very freedom -- to help bring long-buried truths to light.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Spielberg's The Post is a paean to the American ideal of freedom of the press. This highly intense, suspenseful film tells the story of Katherine Graham, owner of The Washington Post and its historic role in the publishing of the Pentagon Papers in 1971. Directed by Steven Spielberg, the films stars Meryl Streep as Katherine Graham, Tom Hanks as the Post's editor, Ben Bradlee and a top ensemble cast.

Set in the classic age of newspapers and network television, before the internet age, The Post is a coming-of-age story on two fronts. The Washington Post goes from being a regional media outlet to a national newspaper of note. In the process, Katherine Graham, goes from being a society hostess to a strong female corporate owner. A former government analyst finds proof of a government cover-up regarding American involvement in Vietnam and leaks the information to The New York Times and The Washington Post. Graham's editorial team is in favor of publishing the material because it'll put the newspaper on the map, so to speak. Her legal and financial team are against it and warn that she could go to jail for contempt and lose the newspaper. What follows is an intense examination of all the pros and cons of the issue.

One of the most fascinating parts of the film is seeing the inner workings of creating a newspaper - the old printing presses, the dyes, the plates with all the metal letters and etchings of pictures. Spielberg clearly loves the traditional craft of printing a newspaper. The John Williams music is perfect for the suspenseful plot. The acting is impeccable. Both Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks have such amazing craft that they imbue their roles with intelligence and humanity. The beginning of the film sets up the true-to-life plot and players. Because of this, the beginning of the film may be difficult for younger viewers because they aren't aware of the politics of the 1970s.

The Post is very timely and reflective of our own time. In this day of "fake news" and media bashing, this film is a refreshing story of the integrity of newspaper organizations. Spielberg tries to show the importance of a free press in combating government malfeasance. The Post is appropriate for ages 15 to 18. Younger teens may find the film boring if they are not interested in politics or media. I give this film 4.5 out of 5 stars for its exceptional use of real life suspense. It is available in theaters January 12, 2018 so check it out.

Reviewed by Clayton P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - There are very few films every year that keep you excited and entertained while delivering impressive visual achievements. The Post does not belong in this category because it far surpasses any expectations and delivers on a much higher level. Every single aspect of this film -from acting to directing to editing - are all superb.

The Post has many things to offer, but the biggest would be the drama surrounding this very real story. It feels like an adventure, even though it takes place on East Coast. It is sprinkled with just the right amount of funny moments here and there, with hilarious and perfectly timed jokes. Out of all the spectacular cinematic achievements, none of them would be possible without the exciting and truly eye-opening story. It dives into a major leak of top-secret information, ranging multiple U.S. presidents, all relating to the Vietnam War. At first, the film seems to be about the two newspapers, The New York Times and the Washington Post, both attempting to get this story. Later, it turns into a fight between freedom of the press and censorship as the Nixon Administration attempts to block both newspapers from publishing any information about their secrets.

The story comes to life under the masterful direction of Steven Spielberg. His most famous techniques are clear from the very first shot and continue throughout the film. In fact, the first scene, which takes place in the jungles of Vietnam, will remind you of Saving Private Ryan due to the heart-thumping sound design and chaotic cinematography that puts you right on the battlefield. The cast has their own achievements. Tom Hanks (Ben Bradlee) and Meryl Streep (Kay Graham) work perfectly together and truly become their characters. John Williams, the Composer for the film, manages to take the spotlight from the visual scenes and put them into the music. His original score sounds incredible and you'll find yourself swallowed by the soothing and memorable tones. But what really looks impressive in The Post is the film grain. The quality looks like a modern film, yet the colors and the lighting make it feel like the 60s which adds to the realism of the story.

The cinematography defines my favorite scene, the climax of the film. Kay Graham, publisher of the Washington Post, has to make the final decision whether the paper should publish the leaked documents or not. She is on the phone with multiple business partners, her editor (Ben Bradlee), and many journalists of the paper as well as some of her board advisors. Easily, this makes for the most intense scene in the entire film and truly brings Meryl Streep's character to life. Throughout the phone conversation, the camera angles make it feel like one long shot across multiple locations. Finally, at the moment she makes her decision, the camera slowly zooms into her eyes and mouth to show wonder, fear, curiosity and more - all at once. Finally, as Kay makes her decision, the camera zooms out and the feeling of intensity immediately leaves the room. Despite being just a few minutes long, it feels like an eternity and you, as a viewer, can't help but clench your fist in anticipation of what her decision will be.

The story has many mature elements and the concept itself is complicated at times. The messages related to journalistic oppression are very important for all ages. I recommend this to ages 10 to 18, as well as adults. I give it 5 out of 5 stars for perfect directing, astonishing acting, and cinematography so beautiful it belongs in an art gallery along with many other films directed by Steven Spielberg.

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURES, AGES 12-18
Description - Following the events of The Force Awakens, Rey begins her Jedi training under Luke Skywalker, who is unsettled about Rey's immense strength with the Force. Meanwhile, the Resistance prepares to continue the fight against the First Order, which is led by Kylo Ren and the mysterious Snoke.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Loyal audiences won't be disappointed! From the traditional opening scroll to the non-stop, action-packed 2:32 hours of characters new, known and loved, writer-director Rian Johnson's Star Wars: The Last Jedi is fantastic. As I watched the film, I thought about the yeoman's task to step into George Lucas' world, filled with beloved characters, and continuing the tale between good and evil, light and dark, all within The Force. After all, Johnson is known for film shorts and episodic television, not movie studio franchise blockbusters.

When we first see our hero, Luke, (Mark Hamill) I could not help but consider, "if Skywalker lives, hope lives." Hope is a central theme of this film and is voiced several times by Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Finn (John Boyega). Only Poe (Oscar Isaac) seems to have a less than optimistic view of the tasks at hand.

Rey demands Luke teach her the Jedi ways. She delivers Darth Vader's lightsaber to him almost as an offering. Luke declines to show her the Jedi religion telling her there are no more Jedi's. As he painfully explains the path his nephew, Ben Solo (Adam Driver) took from light, as a Jedi trainee, to dark as Kylo Ren, the pain is palpable. As Yoda later reminds us, "The greatest teacher is failure."

Carrie Fisher's final performance as Princess Leia is compelling and often funny. She reminds many crew members, "May The Force Be With You" often. At one point, her admonition to Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo (Laura Dern) is funny. In fact, there are many humorous bits within the film, humanizing the war among the worlds and battles within deep space. When we meet the Porgs, I laughed aloud at their antics, especially when they take flight with Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew).

The lessons in the film, spoken by various characters are impactful. My favorite is "saving what we love is the only way we fight hate."

Given the performances of the young actors, and possibilities at the end of the film, I wonder, can this story go on forever? As Luke aptly reminds us, "no one is ever really gone". Thank you, Luke. May we all know peace and purpose. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18 as well as adults. Some battle scenes could be too intense for younger children.

Reviewed by Kimbirly O., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - As I sat back in the comfy leather seats and watched the star-dusted opening credits roll out in front of me, I reminisced about what it felt like watching the Star Wars series for the first time. It has been a long time since that happened and my only hope was that Star Wars: The Last Jedi would be just as mind-boggling as the others. Shame on me for ever doubting the legendary billion-dollar franchise, because (spoiler alert): It is!

If you haven't seen the previous installment, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, then I highly recommend you grab some friends to watch it with and get yourself back on track. Otherwise, you will be in for a big surprise. For those who have seen it, then you know that Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) makes an iconic return to the big screen and this time, with a vengeance. Luke went into hiding, undetected, to the Porg-infested island of Ahch-To die. Rey (Daisy Ridley) has a mission to bring Luke back to fight the Resistance as war is once again brewing against the First Order. Millions of porg-encounters later, Rey finally persuades Luke to lend her his knowledge in combat, leaving Luke unsettled by the strength of her powers.

This time around, Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo (Laura Dern) leads the Resistance due to unforeseen circumstances. Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) and Holdo go head to head as he refuses to follow Holdo's rules. This creates major conflict in the storyline, as some things don't necessarily go as planned during combat. We are also introduced to a new lead character, Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran), a maintenance worker that guards the escape pods. She bonds with Finn (John Boyega) as she takes him to her wealthy home of Canto Bight. Though, there's so much more to this planet than meets the eye.

Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) remains high and mighty, just for show. It's evident that he hides something deep within, something he cannot control - a slight hint of compassion. After a head-to-head conflict with Rey and Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis), the film finally reveals who he truly is.

Now that you have an idea of what the film is about, let's talk about the magic that goes on behind-the-scenes. To be quite honest, the writing has its lows. There are moments when the audience would let out an uncomfortable laugh due to the awkward, juvenile jokes that we know certain characters would never say or do. It felt somewhat out-of-touch with the Star Wars franchise, especially since they are thrown in during the most serious, suspenseful scenes. Despite that, the rest of the screenplay is groundbreaking. It gives the audience what they want and what they didn't know they needed. Also, the cinematography is phenomenal. Shooting in locations such as Ireland and Croatia, the visual effects team make it seem as though they are off in a galaxy far, far away, without straying from its natural beauty. Special effects, as always, are mind-blowing. It's nearly impossible not to fathom lightsabers being real. Top it all off with detailed costume design and award-winning acting, and you've got yourself a masterpiece.

Ultimately, Star Wars: The Last Jedi exceeded far beyond my expectations, and I urge you to go out with your Jedi Knight robes and lightsabers and experience it on the big screen. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18 as well as adults. It opens December 15, 2017 in U.S. theaters so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Michelle C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 19

Star Wars: The Last Jedi lives up to the hype because of its wonderful story and action. The acting has never been better for the series. This is sure to be a hit for all Star Wars fans.

The story follows the events set in place after Star Wars: The Force Awakens when Rey (Daisy Ridley) turns to the legendary Jedi, Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), for help to turn the tide of the desperate battle between the Resistance and the First Order. However, Luke has lost all hope after his failure of letting Ben Solo (Adam Driver) become Kylo Ren. While trying to convince Luke, Rey further learns to control her ties with the Force, while learning mysteries of the past. Meanwhile, the First Order learns an advanced battle tactic that could destroy the Resistance under Leia (Carrie Fisher). This leads to a newly awakened Finn (John Boyega) forming an unlikely team with the smart Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) and the determined Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), to save the Resistance.

Daisy Ridley, as Rey, excellently presents her newly learned powers and her inner battle between the light and the dark side as her character progresses to become an epic hero, like Luke. Mark Hamill, as Luke Skywalker, is the highlight of the movie and he is also my favorite character, due to his long-awaited return as the character, which delivers on all grounds. He delivers a more brooding edge to character as a hopeless Jedi who is adamant on his choices. Adam Driver, as Kylo Ren, is an incredible villain with well-developed motives, as you can feel his inner conflict with the Dark Side. Carrie Fisher, as Leia, delivers an impressive posthumous performance as the tactical leader of the Resistance. Her character is also tied up in a way that respects the actor. John Boyega, as Finn, delivers an excellent performance as his character stops being a coward and transforms into a brave rebel for the Resistance. Kelly Marie Tran, as Rose, is smart and resourceful in her team up with Finn. Oscar Isaac, as Poe Dameron, is a true maverick who refuses to follow orders for the safety of people.

Rian Johnson wonderful directs every scenic location, whether it is from the desolate ship of the First Order to the abandoned, yet beautiful landscapes of Crait. My favorite scene is the one where a certain choice must be made, on the side of Kylo to Rey. My only problem with this movie is that, while the performances between Finn and Rose are superb, their subplot drags the movie in a slower middle act. However, this a short part of a long movie is full of story and battles.

The message of the movie is about finding hope. The Resistance is put through extreme threats from the First Order, but they find a way to battle it with hope. I give this film 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18 because of its intense action. The movie releases in theaters on December 15, 2017, so check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD AGES 8-18
Description - Tai and his friends are haunted by the infection that resulted in Meicoomon destroying Leomon. What could have caused it? When did it occur? Now, all of the Digimon are quarantined, in hopes that answers can be found and the infection can be stopped. Unfortunately, one of the quarantined Digimon is already showing symptoms. The adventure now evolves once again...
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Beautifully executed but contains the most emotionally upsetting segments of the series. These episodes show the world of Digimon afflicted by a terrible virus that causes the Digimon to act feral. The only way to save these beloved creatures is to reboot the world. This is an emotional time for the characters because it causes the Digimon to lose all their memories which is absolutely heart breaking. You feel every memory that Digidestin and the Digimon have made together fade. I'm hoping the next installment will be a happier one. The animation is great and the voice acting is wonderful. I love being able to reconnect with characters I grew up with and watch my children form a relationship with them as well. This is great for ages 10 to 15 and I give it 5 out of 5 stars.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Digimon Adventure Tri. 3: Confession is a beautifully made anime film that touched my hearts and will touch the hearts of others. The storyline picks up right after the events that took place in past movies. Tai and his friends are still trying to figure out what caused the infection that made Leomon go rogue. All the Digimon are quarantined in hopes to keep them safe from the infection and buy the friends some time to figure out ways to stop it from spreading. Sadly, one of the Digimon is showing some indications that they might have the infection.

This DVD is the third film in the franchise Digimon Adventure Tri. I had absolutely no background knowledge of the first film Digimon Adventure Tri, nor did I know anything about the second film Digimon Adventure Tri.2: Decision. Consequently, it was a bit difficult for me to understand what was happening in the beginning of the film, since the characters referred to things that happened in the previous two films. For example, the character Leomon is discussed a lot in the beginning of the movie. I had no idea who or what that character was for the first twenty minutes. Eventually I picked up that Leoman is a Digimon. Then, I had to re-watch the scenes where they talked about that character. The one very helpful thing in this film are the flashback scenes. They really helped me understand the plot. I recommend that people watch the first and second films before watching this one as it will help them understand the plot of the film.

This is not my first anime film, but it is my first anime dealing with magical characters like Digimons. I was not a fan of Pokemon growing up so I never watched too many anime films. Occasionally I have watched a realistic fiction anime but never fantasy ones. After watching this film I'm definitely going to put more time in watching anime films. This film gives justice to the world of anime. The storyline is compelling and the whole concept of digital monsters is absolutely fascinating. I love the relationships between the people and their Digimons. My favorite duo has to be Patamon (Anna Garduno) and TK (Johnny Yong Bosch). I could feel the love they have for each other. I grew very fond of these characters over time. I emphasized with them when times were bad. These two characters make this film even better.

The animation is absolutely stunning. There is so much detail that goes into making anime films. This film meets that high standard. The Digimon are drawn beautifully. Their exterior designs match their personalities so well. I could tell a lot of time went into drawing these monsters. The humans also have a very special look to them. My favorite feature is the characters' eyes. You can feel the characters' emotions by looking into their eyes. It can be difficult to truly connect with animated characters at times, due to their not looking realistic. These characters are drawn very realistically and I personally connected to them.

I recommend this film for ages 7 to 16. Younger audiences will love the fun characters and the older audiences will find the story line interesting. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars. I felt a connection to the characters and an urge to know the ending. I think the animation is stunning. This film is available now on DVD now so go check it out!

Reviewed by Talia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Digimon Adventure Tri: Confession impressed me because of its wonderful style and action. The voice-acting is spectacular and the impressive animation allows for amazing visuals. This is sure to be a hit with Digimon and anime fans.

The story follows the events after an infected Meicoomon (Kate Higgons) turns to the dark side and kills Leomon. Due to this, Meicoomon's owner, Meiko (Miho Arakawa), is dealing with extreme guilt and all the other Digimon are left in the office of Izzy (Mona Marshall) to prevent further infection. However, when Takeru (Junya Enoki) finds out his Digimon, Patamon (Laura Summer), is facing infection, he tries to stop it before it is too late. Meanwhile, Meicoomon returns to cause more havoc on Earth.

Miho Arakawa, as Meiko, excellently presents her guilt and blame after Meicoomon turns to the dark side. Her sadness is well presented as she tries to abandon her team. Junya Enoki, as Takeru, is a highlight delivering a well-ranged performance full of charisma and urgency, as he tries to put his team back together to save Patamon. Also, the emotional drama between Takeru and Patomon is well done, and due to this he is my favorite character. Tom Fahn, as Agumon, is a well-presented team leader of the Digimon who will do anything to save his friends. Laura Summer, as Patamon, delivers and equally emotional performance to Takeru as she is facing a possible impending infection, which will turn her against her Digimon friends. Kate Higgons, as Meicoomon, is a well-developed antagonist who is a formidable foe for the Digimon to fight.

The direction by Keitaro Motonaro is wonderful due to a pace that feels as if it's an interesting magna story. My favorite scene is the scene when Takeru tells Patamon that he is infected, because it is extremely emotional due to the incredible acting of the two characters. My only problem with this movie is the large amounts of expository flashbacks that further progress the story. It feels like a lazy way to tell a story.

The message of the movie is about finding a way to forgive yourself. Meiko's intense guilt and blame for herself is a big plot point, but she learns that moving on and helping the team will be for the better. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18 because of its action and emotional themes. The movie is available now on DVD and Blu-Ray, so check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Runtime: 105 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 13.42 Media: DVD

Series: DVD AGES 2-5
Description - Relive Raymond Brigg's holiday classic, The Snowman! One crisp, winter morning, a young boy wakes up to find a thick blanket of snow has covered the ground as far as the eye can see. Filled with excitement, the boy decides to build a snowman using a tangerine for his nose, coal for his buttons and eyes, and tops him off with a hat and scarf. Later that night, at the stroke of midnight, the snowman comes to life! The young boy and the snowman embark on a magical adventure of discovery where the snowman explores the young boy s world and in return he takes him flying to his home in the North Pole. Upon arriving at the North Pole, the two join a party as the guests of honor to a very special person. Then, embark on a new adventure in the charming sequel, The Snowman and the Snowdog! When a young boy and his mother move to a new house, the boy discovers a secret box hidden under the floorboards of his bedroom. In the box, he finds a hat, scarf, some lumps of coal and a shriveled tangerine - it's a snowman-making kit! Later that day it starts to snow and the boy builds a Snowman and with the little spare snow leftover, a Snowdog. That night they come to life and take him on a wonderful adventure. As dawn breaks they fly home, but before the boy returns to bed a magical surprise awaits 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.

This double feature is simply enchanting and magical! I loved the books and I love how the illustrations come to life in this film and what is even more amazing is how entertaining it is to watch even without any talking. I was simply enchanted by the film and didn't want to miss a minute of it. The music fits the film so well and I am awed by the magic of the stories. My favorite part in The Snowman is when the Snowman tries on different fruits for his nose. These films will make you smile. The sequel is even more magical than the original, if that is possible. They are definite holiday feel-good types of movies that the whole family should watch! The bonus features are interesting. I especially like the alternate introduction from David Bowie. Other bonus features include "The Story of The Snowman," "Behind the Scenes" interviews with the author, Raymond Briggs. I recommend this film for ages 4 to 18 as well as adults and I give this 5 out of 5 stars for originality, magic and entertainment value. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This double feature DVD includes heartwarming films about the winter season that never ceases to amaze me. I like both movies because they remind me of myself during the holidays. For example, when the boy has to scrounge up snow for his snowman, I thought about when I tried to do the same thing! This DVD includes two movies: The Snowman and The Snowman and The Snowdog. I love both equally!

In The Snowman, a young British boy in a classic 1950s English rural home builds a snowman on Christmas Eve. At midnight, the snowman comes to life and takes the boy on a flying trip around the world! The scenes become grander and grander until you think nothing more can happen! After all of this is over, they travel back home. The next morning, the boy...well, you'll see. The ending brought meaningful tears to my eyes!

The sequel movie, The Snowman and The Snowdog picks up where the first movie left off. It takes place in modern times with another boy who has recently moved into the exact same English house (now renovated). Less than a year after moving in, the boy discovers under a floorboard a time capsule left behind by the previous boy. This box includes a picture of the same snowman and the original objects used to decorate it. The lad builds the snowman according to the picture and the Snowman is reborn! Still, the boy isn't finished. While saddened with the recent loss of his dog, he also builds a Snowdog! They travel around the world in similar fashion as the first boy, but there is a surprise ending!

The detail in these movies is stunning! Even though there is no talking, the artistry makes up for that. Each scene is hand-drawn, which must have been a technical pain for the scenes in motion! These movies are based on Raymond Briggs' classic picture books. Besides young children, adults who have read this book in their youth will also appreciate these quality films. The unexpected ending is truly memorable!

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for kids ages 2 to 6 and adults who enjoy fine art. This movie is available both on DVD and VOD. So, enjoy this winter delight!

Reviewed by Eden T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

Holiday movies are one of my favorite forms of entertainment. Especially those that have adorable characters and a heartwarming tale. That is what these two short films called The Snowman and The Snowman and The Snowdog are all about. Add magnificent hand drawn animation and you have the perfect Christmas movies.

I love that these two films on this double feature DVD have no words and are both beautifully illustrated with animated images. The orchestra for the original film is Sinfonia of London and for the sequel, the London Metropolitan Orchestra. Their performances are stunning. Each piece of music fits the scene perfectly because it made me feel as if I was in the scene myself. Also the music is superb to just relax to. So grab a hot cup of cocoa and put your feet up.

Both of these films are hand drawn with pastels and pencils. The only thing that is CGI (in the sequel) is the falling snow flakes and that took a lot of persuasion to get Raymond Briggs to allow that. The best part of both films are the drawings, which make them special and unique. I like having a break from all the CGI and seeing animation as it was made years ago. This is something that many other kids will appreciate as well.

My favorite movie out of the two films is the sequel, The Snowman and The Snowdog. I love this movie because there is an adorable dog made of snow and the quirky snowmen. Also in this movie there are more snowmen and snowwomen which is something that I loved seeing.

I love the adorable Snowdog. He is very funny and had me laughing and even crying for joy. He is my favorite character. I also think that he would be an amazing pet to have. This is because he is very loyal and he comes whenever you call for him.

I recommend this DVD for ages 2 to 18. These movies never get old and people from all over the world will absolutely adore them. This DVD has become one I have added to my holiday collection and will watch it every year. Even really young children can watch it because it is so beautiful and the message is all about friendship, love, cheer and what the holidays are all about. I give this DVD 5 out of 5 golden stars.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 60 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.96 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - Gumby and Pokey, television's legendary clay characters, live one great adventure after another in a timeless world of stop motion magic and wonder. Join our favorite duo in this fun-filled collection of 50's, 60's and 80's episodes! When Santa gets sick right before Christmas, will the holiday be ruined or can the Witty Witch save the day and deliver the gifts with the help of a certain someone? Then, Scrooge escapes from his book and sets out to destroy all of the toys in Toyland, but luckily Gumby is there to save the day. From helping the Pilgrims, George Washington, and even the Moon Boggles, to rescuing a baby mastodon in the arctic, these unique shows will spark your imagination and bring a smile to your heart.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I didn't watch Gumby as a child but I was aware of the cartoon, as we called them. What struck me watching these clips is how much is based on actual history. Learning about General George Washington crossing the Delaware River, the American Revolution, watching an infamous character from the famous book "A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens come to life and see how Gumby deals with each of these is interesting. Learning a little about the Pilgrims and Thanksgiving is also a good lesson. Whoever heard of Santa Claus getting sick on Christmas Eve? Having Gumby, Pokey and a good witch come to the rescue is brilliant! Learning about Alaska? Wow, that is awesome! Who has ever seen a glacier? An Eagle? A Walrus? An Igloo? A Polar Bear? These stories are entertaining and enlightening and hold a child's interest. The focus throughout the series seems is one of teamwork and the importance of working together for the common good. The cover is very colorful. It looks like the characters are having fun on the sled, which is an indication of fun things to come!

This DVD has a number of clips, each telling a different story. The characters in each clip are interesting and fun. It is designed for younger kids, but older children will learn a bit about history by watching. The vocabulary is suitable for the target audience and the claymation and colors are fun for everyone to watch. The social models I gather from this DVD is one of teamwork and its importance. There is a bit of negative behavior in "A Pigeon in a Plum Tree," but Gumby works through it. In "Northland Follies" when a box falls on an igloo, Gumby and Pokey get even with the walrus and leave the scene, because they don't want to have to re-build the igloo again. All in all, the clips are funny and kids are engaging.

Critical thinking and problem solving skills are encouraged as well as doing the right thing. Gumby and Pokey get into lots of interesting situations and many come right out of pages in a book, yet they don't change history, they just add more fun to the story.

The DVD cover design is wonderful and appeals to its target audience. Claymation is a unique form of animation that is not frequently seen. The colors are bright and cheery and the characters are quite real looking. The menu allows you to go to a specific episode. I recommend it for ages 4 to 10 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Tina B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This collection of a dozen Gumby episodes promises to entertain the whole family with great humor suitable for all ages. Its spectacular soundtrack really brings the show justice.

Like many other Gumby collections, this set revolves around Gumby's adventures which vary from episode to episode, but generally have some light comedy throughout. Something that really stands out to me on this DVD is the moment where Gumby actually talks about some historical facts, bringing a bit of education to this set.

Even though this collection's branded as Arctic, there are many episodes that leave the Arctic Circle and dive into history. Some of the best include visiting the American Revolutionary War or the voyage on the Mayflower. Gumby really makes them shine by bringing humor and unique adventures to each one. The genius writers even fit in an occasional fact here and there that teaches young viewers about history without it feeling like a lecture. It just feels like one character explaining the situation to another character. However, there are minor issues with some of the plots. Generally, Gumby episodes are very short which fits the style, but many of these are too open-ended and don't have a concrete finish. Almost all Gumby episodes feel a bit unfinished and seem to do little to address the conflict that made the story exist, which leaves the viewer slightly disappointed.

The quality of the stop-motion animation keeps at a superb level, despite these episodes originally being made across three decades, some as early as the 1950s. The writers, for the most part, did well in keeping the episodes interesting. There are some noticeable repeats in jokes or ideas. For example, there are two episodes where Gumby and Pokey somehow destroy an igloo and must rebuild it for the occupants. The two stories vary slightly, but have a very similar conflict. This makes the repeat episode rather boring. Something that the writers excel at (as they always did for Gumby) is the dialogue. The conversations are always natural, smooth and very realistic, despite all the characters being made from clay. These episodes of course also feature the original soundtrack of the show, which is recognizable and really adds to the experience. The music feels light and soothing, yet entertaining and fitting for each story.

My favorite episode is Gumby Crosses the Delaware River. In this episode, Gumby and Pokey enter a book about George Washington's crossing of the Delaware River, where he surprise-attacked enemy soldiers. Pokey and Gumby help Washington by sending Pokey in as a spy. The episode is filled with a good sense of humor and does teach kids about some historical facts. It represents a perfect bundle of learning and fun.

Like all other Gumby collections, the show revolves around family. There are some jokes here and there that will make teens and adults laugh, but it's mainly geared for younger kids. I recommend this for ages 9 to 18 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. In general, the episodes are great to watch, but some could have a better or different storyline to ensure uniqueness and the originality of writing. This DVD is available in stores now so go check it out.

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

I believe the DVD Gumby: Arctic Antics is a great series because of its claymation and characters. I found it brought cheer to my Christmas and made me happy.

This DVD is a collection of holiday themed episodes from the 50s, 60s and 80s about Gumby and his friend Pokey as they look into famous stories about Christmas, Thanksgiving and the fourth of July. Gumby and Pokey are an iconic duo from the 60s.

This type of animation is known as claymation. It reminds me of Christmas movies such as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and other classics such as Santa is Coming to Town. They poke fun of the fact that the characters are clay by making them melt. I like how they incorporate live action with the animation. In one scene, Gumby and Pokey fall down into a pile of things and they are live action.

The characters in the show are fantastic. I love the banter between Gumby and Pokey. Gumby always tells Pokey to pay attention to the story they are watching, but he always disobeys. Instead, he helps the characters in the story.

The message of this film is to help people no matter the consequences. It spreads a message about helping friends or people in need. Pokey helps a prince who was scammed by shop owners when they gave him a plum tree with a pigeon in it. So, he tells a man with fairy dust to turn the tree and pigeon into gold. The prince is surprised of what happens and the girl he gives it to is ecstatic.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars recommend it to ages 6 to 9. This is available on DVD now so go check it out.

Reviewed by Carla P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 80 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 3.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 4-10
Description - Inspired by the world of Playmobil� toys, embark on a series of adventures with the Super 4 as they travel throughout the wider Playmobil� universes. Whether it be a sci-fi futuristic world, a magical fairy world, a world of pirates, or a world of medieval knights, the adventures are never ending! Welcome to Kingsland, a world of chivalry, dragons, quests, tournaments, and castles! Kingsland is ruled by the corrupt King John, who is Prince Alexander's uncle. King John ascended the throne when Alex's father and mother were lost at sea. Prince Alexander is the heir to the throne but cannot abide living under his uncle's corrupt authority. Join Prince Alexander, or Alex as he'd prefer to be called, along with his Super 4 friends as they band together to fight villains especially dragons and save their worlds from chaos.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Welcome to Kingsland is about the Super 4 and a lovely prince named Alex joining forces to take down the evil king (who just happens to be Alex's uncle) and fight many medieval monsters such as dragons to save the world! Although I enjoyed the story, I have to be honest., I really disliked the CGI animation. While I understand that this is a Playmobil property and they do things very similar to LEGO. I just really feel like their animation doesn't work well here. By the end of this program, it felt as if it was a long commercial for the Kingsland Playset and less an actual story. My son enjoyed it though and I believe that the younger aged kids will like it. I just wish there was more to learn from this program and less to buy. It is very comical and definitely tries to teach children to problem solve, but falls a bit short of the mark for my liking. I recommend it for ages 5 to 9 and give it 3 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love this DVD with its seven, fun-filled episodes with wonderful story lines, exciting characters and fun animation. The animation is similar to what LEGO movies use, but it Is different and transports you to a new place.

The stories usually start off at King's castle and the characters leaving on an adventure. The PLAYMOBIL characters are young, quirky and still trying to figure out their abilities. They all have clothing that matches their various characters which adds to making them look realistic. The Super 4 leader is a prince who is the brave knight, Alex (Damien Ferrette). A rambunctious and quirky pirate, Ruby (Laetitia Lefebvre) has their backs at all times although she is a bit of a thief. A shy and adorable fairy, Twinkle (Sarah Natochenny) is still learning how to use her magic wand. An intelligent and boastful scientist, Gene (Franck Lorrain) stands out from the others because he is a scientist from the future. Also, there is a silly girly girl, Leonora Princess (Alyson Leigh Rosenfeld) who loves her brother but can be a bit of a burden at times. She is very kind and clever and tries to help the Super 4 save the day and the kingdom.

This is set in medieval times, a period I always take joy in watching with its knights, dragons, castles and, of course, a catapult. The background and castles put you the mood to grab your sword and defend the castles. Gene makes this a unique story line. His futuristic vehicle with computers, wheels and an engine sure beats walking or riding horseback. He always tells the viewers facts and science knowledge to help them solve the problems.

The voice talent are perfectly matched for their characters. The fairy is a bit high pitched perhaps but, one thing I like is that you can always tell who is talking because their voices are re all so distinct. The episode "Princely Wedding" is humorous because the Princess is put under a love spell and falls in love with the Black Knight and Super 4 must figure out what is going on. She wants nothing to do with them because she is madly in love and will not listen to anyone, but her "love" is a sworn enemy of the kingdom. She is a girly girl, so this episode is totally out of character for her. I smiled from ear to ear in the "Baby Dragon" episode when Gene, the mature scientist, is singing a lullaby and is attached to the baby.

The lesson learned here is that we all need each other to conquer problems. You should never give up as there are always different ways to look at things. When you do, you can find a solution. I recommend this to kids age 5 to 12. The episodes are short enough to keep young ones' attention and the unique animation, story lines and science information will entertain older kids. I give this 5 out of 5 super PLAYMOBIL stars. You can find this DVD wherever DVDs are sold.

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

Super4 is a decent Playmobil series that is more suitable for younger kids. The voice acting kept me in interested, but, the childish jokes were definitely not suited for my age group. Also, the CGI is not as sophisticated. Despite these flaws, it is very watchable by a younger audience.

The story line follows the adventures of four characters who go on adventures in Kingsland. The four characters include Prince Alexander (Damien Ferrette), Twinkle the fairy (Sarah Natochenny), Ruby the pirate (Laetitia Lefebvre) and Gene the scientist (Franck Lorrain). The team face certain challenges such as opposing kingdoms and dragons in six different episodes.

Damien Ferrette delivers a decent performance as Prince Alexander and expresses the character's adventurous side quite well. Sarah Natochenny plays a fun Twinkle the fairy, showing the magical side of the character well. Ruby the Pirate (Laetitia Lefebvre) presents a very believable pirate that likes to steal. Gene the Scientist (Franck Lorrain) is the most interesting character due to his intelligence and wittiness.

The movie's CGI is not as sophisticated as most of today's animated TV shows, which bothered me a little. Most movies today, such as the Pixar movies have realistic animations of the characters. The animation here seems choppy and the characters are not very detailed. Despite this, I appreciate the effort of the animation team because their efforts display the characters well. My favorite part would be the scenes involving the dragons. I think that the dragons are a great, fantastical element.

This movie has a good message about people working as a team and that, as a team, they can solve any problem. The team is faced with various dangers and they work together to overcome these dangers. This show would appeal more to anyone interested in Playmobil line of toys. I give this show 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 8 years old. This series is available on DVD so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Super 4: Welcome to Kingsland is a DVD of episodes about the Playmobil characters known as the Super 4. The series is based on the worlds of Playmobil. The worlds shown on this DVD are: Kingsland, which holds knights, barons, kings, princes, princesses and dragons; Fairy World, where fairies and little strange monsters live; and the Lost World, which includes dinosaurs. I must admit, I didn't really enjoy this DVD. It is very repetitive. The characters that aren't Super 4 members do the same thing in every episode. For example, the knights just worship the king and don't fight. The plot where the baron tries to marry the princess is used in two different episodes.

The members of the Super 4 are: Alex, (Damien Ferrette), the prince of Kingsland and the leader who started the Super 4; Twinkle, (Annouck Hautbois), a fairy from Fairy World, who doesn't always get her spells right the first time; Ruby, (Laetitia Lefebvre), a pirate from the Pirate Lost Island, who sometimes gets in trouble for stealing treasure but always gives it back unless it is owned by the enemy; Gene, (Franck Lorrain), the team's genius from the Agents' world, who never gets things wrong. The Super 4 are a group of friends who embark on many adventures and missions to fight villains. This collection is about a few of their adventures saving Kingsland, Alex's home world from chaos.

My favorite episode is called "Rage of Dragon" which is about the enchanted witch from fairy world who puts a spell on Ruby that turns her into a dragon. Super 4's remaining members must figure out what happened to her and help her break the spell. That episode really stands out. My favorite character is Alien, Twinkles strange little monster pet who is really scared of dragons. He is funny because he is always clumsy.

The message of this show is that if you work together, you can do anything. I don't like that the series repeats the same plot multiple times, but younger kids who like repetition and play with Playmobil might love this. For that reason, this series isn't really my taste. I rate this DVD 2 out of 5 stars for its ability to look like Playmobil. I recommend this DVD for ages 2 through 6 because it has a lot of repetition of plots and characters and little kids love that. This DVD/Blu-ray is available now so go check it out.

Reviewed by Damon Foxe, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 85 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE 5-12
Description - In Sony Pictures Animation's THE STAR, a small but brave donkey named Bo yearns for a life beyond his daily grind at the village mill. One day he finds the courage to break free, and finally goes on the adventure of his dreams. On his journey, he teams up with Ruth, a lovable sheep who has lost her flock and Dave, a dove with lofty aspirations. Along with three wisecracking camels and some eccentric stable animals, Bo and his new friends follow the Star and become accidental heroes in the greatest story ever told - the first Christmas.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This incredible animated film had me laughing the entire time. On top of that, there are so many talking animals, ranging from horses to sheep and even dogs. I love dogs immensely, so seeing them talk kept my eyes peeled the entire time. Along with the talking animals comes an impeccable plot, so I promise that you'll never be bored.

When a donkey named Bo breaks free from the local village mill, he joins his friend, Dave the Dove, on the trip of a lifetime. On their journey to Bethlehem, they find a lovable sheep named Ruth and they all work together to keep Joseph and Mary safe. In doing so, they encounter numerous obstacles, such as fighting wild dogs and protecting Mary from being stabbed. This film is undoubtedly unique, because it tells the story of the First Christmas from an animal's perspective. Watch Bo and his friends discover the true meaning of the First Christmas, by following the bright star in the sky, which ultimately guides them through all of their encounters.

Steven Yeun, who plays Bo the Donkey, is hands down my favorite character. He is optimistic and truly cares about the well-being of others. Even though Joseph tells Bo to leave him and Mary alone, Bo will not stop until he ensures that Mary can safely birth her son. Gina Rodriguez, who plays Mary, is such a sweet woman. She truly cares for Bo and, while her husband Joseph doesn't want Bo around, Mary will never let Bo down. Zachary Levi, who plays Joseph, is an exceptional example of a husband. He never lets Mary down, comforts her when she's upset and will do absolutely anything to make her happy. He travels for miles to find a place for their son Jesus to be born and remains calm the entire time. I applaud him for his great patience.

The animation in this film is adorable. Bo the donkey is the cutest donkey I have ever seen. He has big eyes and, whenever he makes a mistake, you have to forgive him, because he doesn't mean any harm. Each character looks dramatically different. It's great to see such diversity in the film. All of the characters respect one another, no matter their backgrounds or appearances, which is a concept that should directly be applied to human interaction.

My favorite part is when Bo and Ruth are trying to warn Joseph and Mary of the bad guys. The audience knows the animals can talk, but Joseph and Mary don't, which makes it even funnier. All Joseph and Mary can hear is screaming animals and they see Bo and Ruth running around in circles, pretending to act as vicious, wild dogs.

The message of the film is to appreciate the meaning of the First Christmas. Before watching this film, I was unaware of the history behind it, but I am so glad I watched it, because it changes your entire perspective on Christmas. In addition, the film focuses on working together, never giving up on each other and always treat others kindly, even if they don't treat you that way. There is no reason to ever be mean to anyone and all of these animals are so kind to each other. If animals can do it, so can humans.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18. It is the perfect film to watch this upcoming holiday season with family and friends. This film opens November 17, 2017 in your local theater, so go check it out. There is no better way to kick off the holiday season than by watching a film about why we celebrate the Christmas holiday.

Reviewed by Samantha M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Star is an amazing movie! It has some stunning animation and graphics. I could see every single hair on the animals. It also has a marvelous plot based on true events. This film gives a modern twist to the biblical story of Jesus' birth which makes it very interesting and keeps you at the edge of your seat. It also has a lot of comedy and funny jokes.

The Star is the story of Jesus' birth and the journey of all the animals in the famous nativity scene. Bo, a donkey, escapes the mill he was in and hid in Mary's house. Bo discovers that there is an evil king who wants to kill Mary, so he follows Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem to protect them.

One of the things I love about The Star is the great music (thanks to John Paesano) and its amazing artists, from Mariah Carey and Kelsea Ballerini, to Fifth Harmony and Pentatonix. I found a bunch of wonderful new Christmas songs in this movie and they are all so awesome. I also love the stunning animation. When Bo first goes outside of the millers, it had been a while since he had been outside. So when he did, you can see his pupils dilate. That shows the amount of attention to detail the animators made. This film makes this biblical story more interesting for kids, with a lot of action and engagement. It is also very funny. They crack a lot of jokes that made the whole audience laugh. My favorite scene is when Joseph tries to put a harness on Bo and Joseph keeps falling off.

The message of this film is that friendship is worth fighting for and, even if someone doesn't know that they need it, you should still help them. I recommend this film for ages 5 to 12 because it really is a great family movie and will teach kids a little more about the history of Christmas and Jesus' birth in a fun way. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars for it stunning animation, modern plot and amazing new music. This film opens November 17, 2017 so be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Dariana A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 6-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - A lavish trip through Europe quickly unfolds into a race against time to solve a murder aboard a train. Everyone's a suspect when Detective Hercule Poirot arrives to interrogate all passengers and search for clues before the killer can strike again.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - As a colleague of mine said after the closing credits, "Ever once in a while, isn't it great to see a wonderful film." This gentleman has been in the theater and entertainment business all his life, as were the others with whom I attended this screening. With a wonderful cast, under the direction of Kenneth Branagh, who also stars as Poirot, this film did not disappoint. The script, based on the classic novel by Agatha Christie, is filled with wonderful dialogue that one likes to savor it in your memory. The cinematography and locations were awe-inspiring. The camera shots coming over a precipice to see the iconic train below stops your heart at times. Yes, I loved it. Other critics have panned it and I ask why. Perhaps because it's too slow for our U.S. audience that craves action and adventure. But, for me, I enjoyed the costumes, the idea of being on that train, of sussing out "who done it" and more. Of course, I already knew the story but I put that into the back of my brain so I could watch this as if it was fresh and new. And, that made me happy. I loved it! I recommend it! Unless you are a speed junky, I think you will too. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Murder on the Orient Express is an incredible film. It is a perfect example of a classic suspenseful mystery movie. It is based on the detective novel by Agatha Christie. Watching this film really made me want to read the book.

The movie follows Hercule Poirot as he makes a journey aboard the train, The Orient Express. When someone gets murdered in the first-class carriage, while the train is temporarily stuck in snow, he interrogates the remaining passengers to find the culprit. As he slowly starts unraveling the different stories, lots of contradictory clues start to appear and they lead you, along with Hercule Poirot to finally make sense of this twisting tale. I really like how the movie allows you to connect to all the characters as they tell their stories in detail.

My favorite scene is the inevitable big reveal at the end of the film, when Poirot solves the case. I love mystery movies. This is the part when you find out if you are right about who you think committed the crime. I saw this film at in 70mm which was awesome. It gave the film a really authentic feeling.

I love how all the actors portray their characters. During the interrogations, you can tell that each character has something to hide. I really enjoyed Kenneth Branagh as Hercule Poirot. I feel that he really fits the character and portrays how Hercule is feeling at any given time. His moustache is fabulous. I particularly like his moustache guard that he wears at night. This is very funny.

I love the attention to detail in this film. I that there is a slow, rocking sound of the train throughout the entire movie and that there is always movement outside the windows, while the train is in motion. I also like the small connections to Agatha Christie's other books. I love how they use black and white footage to represent flashbacks. This makes very clear what happened in the past rather than the present.

The moral of this film is that there is more to any situation than meets the eye. Nothing is just black and white or right and wrong. There is a gray area in between where people's actions can be both.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars for its real, authentic feel and recommend it for ages 10 through 18 as well as adults. This film opens in theaters November 10, 2017 so check it out.

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

I was excited when I watched the film, Murder on the Orient Express. This movie is truly amazing. I always love mystery movies because they really get me thinking. This one is particularly puzzling. It kept me guessing till the end. The storyline pulls it all together well. The movie has an old-time feel since it takes place in the past. The screening I saw it at was on 70mm film which added to the overall feeling of it. Some parts of the movie are a bit scary, but there are very funny moments too.

The stars of this film are Kenneth Branagh as Hercule Poirot, the protagonist, who is the most amazing detective. Penelope Cruz plays Pilar Estravados, a humble Spanish missionary and nurse. Willem Dafoe plays Cyrus Hardman, a stern German professor who keeps to himself while keeping an eye on everyone else. Other famous actors who are featured include Dame Judy Dench, a foreign princess, Michelle Pfeiffer, an American actress and Johnny Depp, a conman. They all play characters who are riding first class on the train, The Orient Express, when a murder occurs. Hercule Poirot must use his skills to collect the evidence and find the murderer. As the story unfolds, it is very hard to figure out who the murderer is and why. The tagline is "everyone is a suspect" and this turns out to be true, in the most unexpected ways.

My favorite part is in the beginning when Hercule Poirot solves a mystery of a stolen item and catches the culprit at The Waiting Wall. This scene is hilarious. Nothing about this movie is bad, I like when it shows the bottom of the old-fashioned train. Those scenes are particularly cool. The train drives through some awesome scenery on its journey from Istanbul to Paris. The message of this film is that things aren't always what they seem. The movie is based on the book by Agatha Christie and has a perfect ending to have a sequel, as they mention where Poirot must go next, which is the name of another book by the same author.

This movie is really amazing. I rate it 5 out of 5 stars for its awesome storyline and message. The movie is rated PG-13 and I recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Younger children might not understand the concept of murder mysteries and it contains violence such as stabbing and gun shooting. I believe adults will really enjoy it too.

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

The new mystery film Murder on the Orient Express thrilled with the very intense and complex plot that develops along with the audience's assumptions and theories. When someone watches a suspense movie, you try to keep up and solve the mystery yourself. I could not take my eyes off the screen because of how entertaining this film is and the mystery that unfolds every second of the way. Of course, the plot is very well scripted. It is impressive how everything makes sense and connects at the end. Also, I love how every doubt or question is answered. You can really notice how the filmmakers and the crew were very careful and delicate with the plot and the making of this movie. On another note, what also makes this movie so successful is the cast, a majority of which are A-list, experienced actors that portrayed their characters in the most excellent manner. And at the end, their work pays off as the result is a wonderful film that is most enjoyable.

Murder on the Orient Express is about a lavish train trip through Europe that quickly unfolds into a race against time to solve a murder aboard the train. When an avalanche stops the Orient Express dead in its tracks, the world's "greatest detective" interrogates all the passengers, searching for clues before the killer can commit another crime.

My favorite scene is when the detective interrogates the passengers to get insight on who may be the possible killer. I like this scene because you have the opportunity to see all the different personalities of the various characters in their personal excellent close ups. Also, you get to appreciate the work of all the outstanding actors such as Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz. They are also a big part as to why this movie is pleasurable. Their acting brings the plot to life.

The message of this film is there's more to life than simply right and wrong. In other words, black or white. There are sometimes human factors to consider. People should not be so quick to judged or criticize. The heart needs to be used instead of just thinking with the head or with superficial factors. The detective sees that and has compassion for many of the passengers and their situations. I rate this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. It is in theaters now so, be sure to check it out.

By Alejandra G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 2-7
Description - Welcome to Doozer Creek where the Doozers live! They're green. They're cute. They're three inches tall and they're full of energy, ideas, and enthusiasm! It's family time at Doozer Creek! The Pod Squad want to build a Doozer-sized Gingerbread House! However, in order to achieve such a large size Gingerbread House it's going to take some clever construction to create. Can the Pod Squad do it? Then, Daisy Wheel wants to ice skate with the others, but she doesn't know how. Together, the Pod Squad build her a custom Doo-Step Skating Dress that lets her glide across the ice in no time. Weee! Enjoy these adventures and six more focusing on science, technology, engineering and math!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I really enjoy watching The Doozers because I was always a huge fan of Fraggle Rock. My son loves Fraggle Rock and he totally recognized the Doozers when they came on! In this DVD collection, the Doozers set out to make a large gingerbread house and the show really goes into the math and engineering of building the house. It's great how it manages to simplify it enough for young viewers to enjoy. Next you get to see the gang help out a friend and engineer a really cute dress in the process. There's even little present exchanges in this story. I really love how educational and engaging this show is for younger children. I think teamwork is an important life skill and any child watching this is sure to learn very quickly the importance and joy that comes from being part of a team. This is great for ages 3 to 7, but my 21-month-old really enjoyed as well. I give it 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Jim Henson's three-inch green characters, The Doozers, from the wonderful Fraggle Rock Adventures are available on the new DVD, Doozers: Giant Gingerbread House. This is perfect for the holiday season because it is all about sweet treats, ice skating, presents and holiday joy that we know and love. If you aren't in the holiday spirit yet, then this DVD will put you in it.

One thing I love about The Doozers is that they teach young children about STEAM which stands for science, technology, engineering, art and math. It is so important that kids learn these basic skills when they are young and The Pod Squad demonstrates this perfectly. The Jim Henson team always seems to know what kids will enjoy and they are on target with this new DVD. You might not have the tools that The Doozers have, but it encourages you to want to build something. It makes me feel like there is never a problem that, with a little thought and creativity, cannot be solved.

The voice-overs are great because they are so cute. They match the little green Doozers perfectly. They all have different personalities and qualities. Each character has a terrific personality and that makes me feel as if I have been friends with them forever. My favorite episode is Daisy Wheel on Ice. It is hilarious when Daisy Wheel tries to ice skate but can't. She keeps falling until her friends invent something to help her skate while standing up. This invention could be very helpful for people who can't skate, including me. I think someone should invest in this invention.

Daisy Wheel might be the youngest of the Pod Squad, but she is ready for anything and always has a bright idea when needed. That is why she is my favorite character. Daisy Wheel is also very quirky and had me laughing through many episodes. Daisy Wheel is goodhearted because she loves helping others by building them things. This is another one of her qualities that I adore.

I recommend this DVD to ages 3 to 8 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. Kids will adore the fun things that The Doozers do and will be inspired by the fun projects to want to build things themselves. The animation is colorful and the story lines are easy to follow which makes it perfect for a young audience. It is available on DVD now so be sure to check it out.

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

This is a fun movie to watch during the Holiday Season. It takes place in a magical little community that is close to where humans live, but it is hidden from them. The movie stars members of the Doozer Pod Squad, known for using math, engineering and design to find solutions to problems, which they do again in this story.

The story is simple and sweet. It is a very enjoyable and easy to follow along with. The animation is gentle looking, round and happy. The bright colors and good voice actors make it fun to play on the TV. Like it says in the title, this movie is about a Giant Gingerbread House that the Doozers make. They are trying to sell Molly's father's gingerbread houses, but they need the right materials and some help. They have a positive mission, but will they be able to do it in time for Christmas?

Doozers: Giant Gingerbread House takes us on a fun adventure with four little children and their mission to be helpful. This movie is also about spending time with your friends. If you are the type of person who does not like to work with others, then this is the movie you need to watch to encourage you to work better with others.

There are two characters that I identify with - Mollybolt and Daisy Wheel. Molly is independent and kind. Those characteristics speak to me. I can also relate to Daisy Wheel when she learns how to ice skate. I remember learning how to ice skate and I felt just like her when I started. I relied on the encouragement from my Mom and my friends on the ice rink to help me keep going.

My favorite thing about the movie is its positive message. There is a very important lesson here that I have never seen in a Holiday movie. Doozers: Giant Gingerbread House shows kids that anything can be accomplished if you work with a team and do your best. I learned that if I need help with anything then I shouldn't be afraid to ask for help. I also learned that if anyone tries to do something on their own and are not successful, then they should remember that there are people who are ready to help make it happen. All you have to do is ask! When you work as a team, anything is possible. This movie reminds me of the saying "Teamwork Makes The Dream Work!"

I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids from 2 to 6 years old. I watched it with my 6-year-old brother and he was very entertained. I don't think older kids or adults will find this movie interesting enough, but it is perfect for little kids. This DVD is available now so, be sure to look for it.

Reviewed by Izzy C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD AGES 2-5
Description - Twenty six cuddly ABC Monsters live within the walls of Capital Castle. Each monster represents a letter of the alphabet, but should any of the monsters go missing for longer than a day, all the letters will be wiped clean from every book in Capital Town! In this DVD, embark on adventures with Alice, Brian, and Cherry Berry to search high and low for the letters V, W, X, Y, and Z. It's a very windy day in Capital Town. After checking the ABC Monsters, it seems that one of them is missing - W-Monster! So Alice, Brian and Cherry Berry head into town in hopes of finding their missing friend, W-Monster. Along the way they meet, Wanda the Weaver, Wendy the Window Cleaner and then Willie Webster. Hopefully, one of them will be able to help Alice, Brian and Cherry Berry find W-Monster during this windy day. Get set for a spellbinding series of magical adventures that engages preschool children's imaginations, while making learning exciting and entertaining.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Oh no, W-Monster is missing! Capital Castle is a grand place that houses the 26 Alphabet Monsters, but today we have one missing and we must find it! My son was loving the search and kept asking where W had gone. It was adorable. My favorite thing about this DVD is the alliteration and how it coincides with the main cast. For example: since we are searching for W, we encounter Willie Webster and Wanda the Weaver and all this takes place on a windy day! Isn't that fun? One of the children searching for W-Monster is named Alice and she is such a sweetheart. I love seeing such a positive portrayal of little girls on screen. All of the Alphabet Monsters are funny and somehow manage to have different personalities. This show provides fun adventures, but I honestly just love the fact that these 26 monsters have 26 distinct looks and 26 distinct personalities. It's wonderfully done. This is best for preschool aged children, however, I recommend it for ages 2 to 6 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This educational DVD is super cute and hilarious. I love that it is interactive and that there is music. The animation is very colorful, bright and vivid.

In the story, the letters of the alphabet are all different monsters. Each episode stars one of the letters of the alphabet. Later in the episode, the letter goes missing and it's up to Alice, Brian and Cherry Berry to find the missing letter. If one of the monsters goes missing for more than a day, then all of the letters will be erased from every book. Throughout the episodes, they teach letter recognition, spelling, writing each letter, identifying the missing letter in a word and there are parts where you can sing-along.

I like the style of animation in this show. It is really cute, cheerful, colorful and pleasing. The animation flows well and has lots of detail. The backgrounds look really cool as well. I love the way the characters' faces have different expressions and they show a variety of emotions through their facial expressions.

Each of the characters has a different hairstyle and different personality. This shows me that the creators took the time and the effort to give each character a completely different and unique look as well as a completely distinctive personality. It makes the DVD just that much more interesting to watch and it impacts the storyline as well.

My favorite part of the episodes is when they can make alliterations with the letter that is starring. It is really creative and amazing to see how many words they come up with. For example, on the episode that stars the letter W, they met Wanda the Weaver, Wendy the Window Cleaner and Willie the Webster.

The message of this DVD is about teaching kids to do the right things when different situations arise. The goal is to educate kids about the alphabet and help them develop their language skills. The film also has sing-alongs, which can help in developing your reading skills. This show excels at teaching while entertaining kids. I believe that a child can learn a lot about the alphabet from watching it. I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 7. It is available on DVD now so go check it out.

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

ABC Monsters Starring VWXYZ, directed by Ah Loong, is an interactive adventure full of fun and games! Songs, puzzles and dances encircle each episode with excitement. Puzzles where viewers are asked to help kept me engaged as I felt I was a part of the show, helping the main characters along their journey to find the missing monsters.

The story follows Alice, Brian and their fairy Cherry Berry, who embark on different adventures to find the missing letters. On their way, they face many puzzles, meet new friends and visit new places. They even learn new songs and dance moves as they embark on their exhilarating quests.

The animation and songs are unforgettable. The children and adults have a larger head than body, which allows an exaggeration of emotions. It makes it easy to understand what the characters are feeling. The monsters come in different colors, have distinctive hairstyles and unique personalities. Each characteristic adds to their charm including their smiles and even their unique teeth. The backgrounds are colorful and radiant. They appear to have been drawn as there are sketchy lines that outline the trees, hills and houses. This adds to the calm feeling of watching different, lively scenes. The animation becomes more visually appealing when different patches of designs merge to create walls, floors and hills. It prevents certain areas from being one solid color and gave me more to look at on their adventures.

When a song begins, the scene changes into vibrant shades of yellow, pink and blue with a multitude of flowery shapes. The characters dance on screen while colors and patterns flow past them. There are sparkles everywhere and lights flash as if the characters are at a disco. Captions also appear at the bottom, encouraging viewers to sing along. The ambience of these scenes are exuberant and energetic. The songs themselves are catchy and made me want to sing along too.

My favorite part is the journey of finding the monsters because, even I had the pleasure of guessing the riddles and seeing how one puzzle would lead to the next. The message of this DVD is "always help those in need and good will always transpire." I give this DVD 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 6. This DVD is available now so be sure to check it out, especially if you have preschoolers.

Reviewed by Sahiba K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Runtime: 125 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-5 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - Christopher Robin has a story with a magnificent heart, which is filmed brilliantly. I felt as if I was in England. I cried countless times because the characters are so relatable and there are many touching moments. The acting, photography and graphics are downright superb.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Goodbye Christopher Robin is a great film with top-notch performances from its A-list cast. You may think this is about the creation of Winnie-the-Pooh, which it is, but it is also about how the beloved bear's sharp rise to fame affected the family of A.A. Milne and the writer's own struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Goodbye Christopher Robin follows Milne's young son and his playwright father who finds it difficult to pen any new plays after his experiences in World War I. Father and son begin to spend time together playing in the woods around their new home in the British countryside. Soon, Milne has his friend and fellow soldier, illustrator Ernest Shepherd, visit his homestead to craft stories based on the Milne family's imaginative woodland adventures. Thus, Winnie-the-Pooh is created and a cultural icon is born. Milne gives his own son's name to Pooh's best fictional friend. Suddenly the press and public are eager to meet the real Christopher Robin. The onslaught of interviews and the dwindling time spent with his parents take a toll and he has trouble coping.

Domhnall Gleeson is great as A.A Milne. He shows us the effects PTSD can have on veterans and their everyday lives. Gleeson shows us the transformation from the playwright who feels lost in what he will do next to the author on top of the world grappling with how to deal with his fame and his faltering efforts to be a good father. Kelly Macdonald is also excellent as Christopher Robin's angelic and kind nanny, Olive. She is really the only one watching out for Christopher Robin. Olive has a positive glow that stays strong to the end of the film. She is my favorite character and I compliment Macdonald on making the relationship she has with Christopher Robin so heartwarming.

I give Goodbye Christopher Robin an age rating of 12 to 18 for some subjects that could be troubling for younger audiences. If you're looking for a bright testament to the legacy of Winnie-the-Pooh and the magic of childhood, this is not that film. But Goodbye Christopher Robin is an insightful, historical, sometimes dark drama that goes into other important topics. I give Goodbye Christopher Robin 4 out of 5 stars. It opens in theaters October 13.

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

A creative imagination and playing games is fun, especially when you add the people that you care about your fun adventures! This is a story about what happens when someone takes those thoughts, turns them into books and shares them with the world. Goodbye Christopher Robin has a story with a magnificent heart, which is filmed brilliantly. I felt as if I was in England. I cried countless times because the characters are so relatable and there are many touching moments. The acting, photography and graphics are downright superb. They bring this true story to life.

War is devastating for everyone, especially the families of the soldiers. One of the worst wars in history was World War I. A.A. Mile returns from the war to rejoin his family and friends and has a hard time adjusting to normal life. Once he joins his son's world of fun and adventure, starring a fluffy bear, he reconnects with his son and finds joy. A.A. Mile wrote Winnie the Pooh stories for his son. They were so good that he published them. He wanted to share his new-found joy with the world and make others happy. The war caused much heartache and Winnie the Pooh made people smile. He thought it would also make his son happy.

The cinematography and graphics in Goodbye Christopher Robin are fantastic. The scenes of the woods are very vivid with lots of brilliant colors. The scene when the snow suddenly drifts into the air to make springtime is terrific. I was surprised with its beauty. I love seeing snow fall in reverse.

The acting is fabulous. Each performer seems to have the perfect personality for their character. Christopher Robin (Will Tilston) is adorable and huggable just like Winnie the Pooh. His happiness with his stuffed animals jumps through the screen and makes you smile. He looks like the Christopher Robin we see in the books. A.A. Milne (Domhnall Gleeson) is played as a stern man. He wants his son to be happy, but he also wants to turn Winne the Pooh and his son's stuffed animals into wonderful stories. His muse is his son. Through him he heals from the war and finds his voice again as a writer. He wants to find fame as a wonderful children's writer who brings joy to those who thought there was no joy left in the world. This is played perfectly because you hate him and feel sorry for him, at the same time.

Olive (Kelly Macdonald) is shown as the kind nanny who wants nothing but the best for Christopher Robin and treats him as if he is her own. She tiptoes a fine line between friend and paid help. I love her accent. Christopher Robin's Mother, Daphne Milne (Margot Robbie) wants fame and money. She has no motherly skills, but she does try. At times, she doesn't appear to care if Christopher Robin is okay, just as long as he does what he is told. She is thrilled with the New York Times articles and numerous invites for her family to attend events. I resonated with her emotions. Her crying scenes had me in tears. Older Christopher Robin (Alex Lawther) portrays his role in a very serious way. He creates an emotion of uncertainty. I could not decide if I liked him or not. Great acting sometimes creates an emotional roller coaster ride.

The best part of this film is when Christopher Robin and his father are in the woods making a door for owl's house. If you are a fan of Winnie the Pooh like I am, it is thrilling to see all the different adventures come to life.

I recommend this for ages10 to 18. It is a complicated and emotional story. Adults will love the scenery, the acting and the cinematography. I give it 5 out of 5 fluffy Winnie the Pooh hugs. This film comes out in theaters October 13,, 2017 so, go check it out. Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: AUDIO CD FOR AGES 5-12
Description - This is a musical treasure trove that joyfully celebrates the common chord of the human family. From Celtic to Cajun, African to Mexican, Caribbean to American blues as well as jazz and that Bo Diddly beat, "Life Circles" takes the listener on a spirited musical journey!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Like her song Sweet Potato Pie, Carrie Higgins' 'Life Circles' album is chock full of terrific musical ingredients that will bring a satisfied smile to your face and will keep you coming back for more. Her vocals and songwriting skills are terrific and her choice of subject matter skews well for her target audience. With the extra added baked-in pinch of love throughout, this CD is quite perfect for home, school and travel time! There are a lot of positive values, catchy tunes and variety in subject matter. The songs are well-produced and performed including stimulating musical styles and effects. It is very supportive with clear participatory call and response and overall gentleness and love. There are positive behaviors modeled: connection with the Earth, love for all people, appreciation of our differences and love of family. She never talks down to the children and keeps concepts understandable to her target audience. It is very well recorded. Carrie Higgins' voice is terrific! Well-played all around. It offers a plethora of pro social benefits from the importance of love and family, the boomerang effects from lying, the importance of healthy food and the idea that dreams and aspirations can be attained. I would hope that this album would be subject to repeated listening and instill a stronger sense of belonging and self-esteem in the children. I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 8. Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Life Circles is a positive album with good background instruments and a unique set of songs. Singer / songwriter Carrie Higgins's album is geared towards families and features songs about everything from blood sugar, to an interesting connection with a robe, to a folk tale in song form. My favorite song is Rock-A-Bye. It's got a good rhythm and I appreciate that the repetition goes on just long enough to make it catchy without being annoying. I also like that the songs draw from a range of influences and styles from around the world, including Latin and African beats. My one criticism of this album is that there is no major shift in tone in the selection of songs. While these upbeat high-tempo tunes have a nice assortment of instruments, few songs stand out from the others.

Life Circles is a perfect CD for a road trip. It has 14 songs that will have you and your kids singing along. I also like that they use children's voices for some songs. Kids are more likely to enjoy it when they know that their peers contributed to the album. Overall, the songs are cheerful and easy to listen to. Younger kids and their families are sure to enjoy this fun CD. I recommend it for ages 3 to 9.
Runtime: 45 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.98 Media: AUDIO

Series: DVD, AGES 4-8
Description - The Cat in the Hat takes Nick and Sally on the craziest Halloween ride filled with howlers and shockers and scary fandangle's, big laughs and music and fun from all angles! Their fright-filled adventure takes them deep into the Oooky-ma-kooky Closet where Nick and Sally discover the very best Halloween costumes ever.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I always get super excited about watching this series. Martin Short is the brilliant voice actor of The Cat in the Hat and he's hilarious. In general this series has always been very fun and educational, so it's not a shock the this Halloween special follows suit. In this episode we learn the science behind things such as the changing colors in fall. I am very happy that the story features creepy crawlies and monsters and still makes it fun and fearless for children. Fear is actually a large part of this episode. The Cat in the Hat and the kids address scary costumes and how to overcome those fears. Their adventure consists of a really cute camping trip complete with adorable squirrel interactions and teaching respect for nature and wildlife. This is perfect for ages 3 to 10 and I give it 5 out of 5 stars for being fun and educational! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Halloween is a wonderful Halloween movie for children. The theme is about facing your fears because they are not as big as you think. That is what is interesting about the film.

The storyline is about two kids named Nick and Sally who need to find the perfect Halloween costume. They find the Cat in the Hat and he tells them about a closet that has all the best costumes. They go on the hunt for the perfect costume and face their fears on the way.

The characters are very unique, creative and beautifully animated. Some of them are astonishing. I love the wacky and crazy lady who owns all the costumes. She's very helpful to the kids as she helps them find the perfect costume. I love how she dances with the Cat in the Hat. She is a fun, energetic, loving character that children will love. The Fish that follows The Cat in the Hat on his journeys is also hilarious! I love how he tries to scare The Cat in the Hat but he is so oblivious about his fear of pumpkins.

The animation is close to the Cat in the Hat books. The storyline is identical to the books, which doesn't always happen when you make a book into a movie. There are some movies that do not look anything like the original book. The voice acting is applaud-able. I love how Martin Short's (The Cat in the Hat) voice is exactly how I imagine the Cat in the Hat would sound. I love how he sounds whimsical and kooky. I also adore the voice actors of Sally and Nick. I love how they make their voices so perfectly childlike.

The message of this film is to get over your fears because they are not as big as you think. It teaches kids that you can get over your fear whether it's a small fear of ghosts or a big fear like stage fright. All of the main characters get over fears that they couldn't get over before. The Cat in the Hat gives great advice - the fears you have are not bigger than you think. This is a great lesson for kids that have fears that they cannot get over. I rate this film 5 out of 5 and recommend it to ages 5 to 9. This DVD is available now so, be sure to check it out.

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

This is a film about a friendly, large cat that goes on a fun adventure with two kids named Sally and Nick and their pet fish to find the perfect Halloween costume. Along the way, the group indulges in some spooky fun and silly musical numbers. It is really a fun and festive film to enjoy with your children. This movie is action-packed (for a kids film) and full of magical fun for younger kids to enjoy.

The musical numbers add an innocent and fun component to the film. They are fun, silly and highly entertaining. The musical numbers certainly add lots of fun.

The storyline is easy to follow and actually quite intriguing. When I was younger, I would have watched it and enjoyed it immensely. It leaves you wondering what will happen next. The songs, the animation and the plot are amusing and interesting and very family friendly.

Another aspect that is commendable is the animation. It is cool, clever, brightly colorful and aesthetically pleasing. It reminds me of the animated films I used to watch when I was younger. The animation style is absolutely one of my favorite parts of the film. Then, of course is Martin Sheen as the voice of The Cat. He is simply delightful to listen to. He delivers a stunning performance that takes me back time and time again. He is worth the price of admission, so to speak.

I rate it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 6. It is available on DVD now so, be sure to check it out. Reviewed by Ella L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 60 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-7 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 5-10
Description - All Little Wolf wants to do is stay at home with Mum, Dad and his brother, Smellybreff. However, Mum and Dad are worried that their precious son, Little Wolf, is not as bad as a small wolf should be. So they decide to send him off to Cunning College in Frettnin Forest to learn the Nine Rules of Badness from his Uncle Bigbad. Uncle Bigbad is a hopeless teacher, but armed with determination and native wit, Little Wolf thinks things out for himself. Sent out by his Uncle to round up a troop of boy scouts to eat for supper, Little Wolf discovers that the scouts have many useful skills that Little Wolf can learn from them. In the end, Little Wolf decides not to follow outdated rules of proper wolf behavior but to be true to himself. As a result, he inherits his Uncle's fortune and becomes master of Cunning College. Based on a world-famous series of best-selling Little Wolf story books, this one-off is a treat for the whole family!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I really enjoyed this animated short film! Little Wolf is charming throughout the film. The whole concept of Little Wolf's Book of Badness is also keen.

Based on the book written by Andre-Morgan and directed by Karsten Kiilerish, the show is about a wolf named, Little Wolf and his perceptions about being bad. His family is disgusted as they watch Little Wolf comb his hair and brush his teeth because, being a wolf you must be unclean and rude. Little Wolfs' Dad and Mom can't put up with his behavior any longer, so they send him to his uncle Big Bad. Big Bad is the head of Cunning College where Little Wolf is taught the nine rules for being bad. In reality though, Big Bad doesn't care about teaching his nephew, he only cares about how much food Little Wolf can give to him.

Big Bad is voiced by Michael Gambon who puts a 'great bad wolf' in his voice. Little Wolf is voiced by Alexander Pownall. Smellybreff, Little Wolf's younger brother is voiced by Matthew Gillespie. Smellybreff knows that Little Wolf isn't acting like a terrible wolf like their parents raised them to be. Lucy Whybrow voices the mom and Richard Hope, the dad.

I enjoyed watching the story come to life. The animation looks like drawing from the book which is very delightful. My favorite part is when Little Wolf tries to warn his uncle of the effects of eating baked beans too fast, but Big Bad just waves his comments away. As he gobbles up all the beans, Little Wolf continues to warn his uncle when he stands to close to the fire. Big Bad once again doesn't listen and toots right in front of the fire, making an explosion at Cunning College. This was my favorite part because it brought some great humor to the climax of the story.

The message of the film is to be yourself by being good, even if being good is bad. I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 9. This DVD is available now so, be sure to check it out.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Little Wolf's Book of Badness, directed by Karsten Kiilerich, is unique and unexpected! With its spiral of surprises, I never could predict what would happen in the next scene. The story also puts a twist on common fairy tales such as Three Little Pigs and Little Red Riding Hood.

The story follows Little Wolf (Alexander Pownall), who is not bad enough for his family. So his Mum (Lucy Whybrow) and Dad (Richard Hope) send him on a journey to Cunning College to learn from his Uncle Bigbad how to be a true bad wolf. On his quest, he learns the 'Nine Rules of Badness.'

Alexander Pownall, the voice actor for Little Wolf, creates personality through his voice. His voice is high, making it sound like that of a young child. As Little Wolf ventures through the woods to reach Cunning College, I heard the fear in his voice and sympathized with him. When he writes letters back to his family and reads them, I heard the unwillingness to be where he was and the sense of defeat just through his voice. Michael Gambon, voice actor for Uncle Bigbad, has terror in his voice that gave me goose bumps. For example, when he is first introduced and he speaks, I knew Little Wolf was going to have a tough time in Cunning College.

The animation is dark but appealing. It sets the tone of the movie as it reflects Little Wolf's feelings. For example, when Little Wolf feels that his trip was a waste of time and nothing good will come out of his journey, the scenery is dark, it is raining and there are shadowy clouds looming above him. The costume designs add to the personalities of each character. For example, Little Wolf has simple clothes that are similar to a schoolboy's outfit, reflecting what his purpose is in the movie. Uncle Big Bad wears a grey suit, with a yellow shirt and blue tie which reflects his personality as an evil wolf but also one who has the potential to have color or goodness in his life.

My favorite part of this show is the animation. The type of animation that is used made me feel as if I was watching my own imagination. The message here is that goodness will always outshine darkness. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 15. This is available on DVD now so check it out.

Reviewed by Sahiba K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

Little Wolf's Book of Badness is a very odd type of film. It's not your typical Dora the Explorer type of kids' show, which is good because there are too many of those types of shows out there. This is a story and a good story at that. It teaches kids through a wolf who is supposed to be bad, but wants to be good.

The storyline is about Little Wolf who just wants to stay at home with his family, but his parents don't think he's bad enough to live up to the Wolf family name. So, they send Little Wolf to Cunning College to learn the Nine Rules of Badness from his Uncle Big Bad. But it turns out Uncle Big Bad isn't such an amazing teacher after all.

As I said, the show is pretty great. The animation is wiggles a bit, even when they are standing still. This is probably intended, but it is kind of distracting. One of the things I really like about this show is its plot and the simple way it shows the lessons they are trying to teach without even saying so. This is what makes it a different type of kids' film. It is also very slow paced. There isn't very much action. One thing I wondered about the whole time is why Little Wolf always sneezes when he's around Mr. Twister. Is he allergic? Michael Gambon, the voice talent for Big Bad is really cool. David Thewlis voices Mr. Twister, which is pretty awesome. I know and like both Gamgon and Thewlis from the Harry Potter films. Another thing I really enjoyed about this film is how scary they make Big Bad. I really was kind of scared when the character Big Bad came on and yelled at Little Wolf. That is probably my favorite scene because it really shows who Big Bad truly is.

The message this film teaches is that, even if you're bad or scary, that doesn't mean that you are happy. I rate this film 4 out of 5 stars because it has a cool, different way of teaching kids. I recommend this film for ages 2 to 6. This film is available now on DVD so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Runtime: 30 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10 - 18
Description - From BBC Earth Films, the studio that brought you Earth, comes the sequel - Earth: One Amazing Day, an astonishing journey revealing the awesome power of the natural world. Over the course of one single day, we track the sun from the highest mountains to the remotest islands to exotic jungles. Breakthroughs in filmmaking technology bring you up close with a cast of unforgettable characters. Told with humour, intimacy and a jaw-dropping sense of cinematic splendour, Earth: One Amazing Day highlights how every day is filled with more wonders than you can possibly imagine- until now.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Earth: One Amazing Day is a beautiful, informational film that makes you really appreciate Earth and know more about it. This film captures nature in all its beauty and is simply breathtaking. This film is very touching, suspenseful and pleasurable. There is comedy, action, adventure, romance and non-fiction all in one film. There is something for everyone to enjoy!

This film explores all the aspects of one day on Earth. It follows the lives of different animals including iguanas, baby lizards, zebras, giraffes, lions and many more. The film shows all the struggles in nature, but also the wonderful and amazing parts. It makes you see the beauty of nature and makes you curious about what's out there.

The people who responsible for filming this, Robin Cox, Kevin Flay and Flying Glass used their cameras to capture the beauty of Earth. Doing this is a real challenge, but they managed to capture so much detail and were able to get incredible close ups. They recorded at different angles, which makes the whole film visually pleasing and close to what it's like if you were actually there. I also loved the narration of Jackie Chan and Robert Redford. Their voices are very mellow, blends in with the music and overall just fits perfectly for this film.

The events that capture are very cool. I especially like how the camera work shoots at different angles so you get a different perspective on the world. The film's visuals are very colorful and intriguing. My favorite part is when the giraffes fight over the land and the ladies. I like this scene because I learned something new. I had no idea that giraffes could bend their necks so much or that they would just swing their heads around to fight. It was really amusing to see their heads swinging around everywhere, but a little sad to see that they were bleeding.

The message of this film is to acknowledge the Earth and realize how lucky we are to be here. There are so many wonderful things happening around us that we don't notice. The film reminds us to stop and smell the roses and to make sure to protect the earth's beauty so future generations can enjoy it as well.

I loved watching this film so much. It really touched my heart and made me realize how beautiful the Earth is, on just one amazing day. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 18. I'm sure that everyone will enjoy this film, even adults. Definitely make sure to check it out. It opens nationwide in theaters October 6, 2017.

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

Earth: One Amazing Day is an incredible feature length documentary that is a sequel to Earth, an acclaimed movie based on Planet Earth, the famous series of BBC wildlife documentaries shown on networks and in schools worldwide. The film features amazing cinematography, stunning graphics, and the audio quality at the screening I saw was brilliant thanks to the Dolby theatre vast speaker system. It had different layers of sound played at the same time creating a very realistic vibe.

Earth: One Amazing Day follows a huge variety of animals and the challenges they must face during a single day. It shows how animals are impacted by the rhythms of the sun and how it provides life to all creatures. It starts off early in the morning following marine iguanas. It then brings you to midday where we get an amazing view of a giant panda and her cub eating bamboo. Next, we get a view of a zebra and her foal attempting to cross a rushing river to get to where the grass will grow next. It continues telling different stories for every animal it shows.

My favorite scene is when it shows a group of bears scratching on trees to music. The scene is hilarious and is very well edited so that the bear's movements appear to go to the music.

The documentary is narrated by Academy award-winner, Robert Redford. The pauses he leaves between his words are timed brilliantly creating a dramatic atmosphere for each tale. Earth: One Amazing Day was directed by Richard Dale, Peter Webber, and Fan Lixin. This is currently one of the biggest collaborations on a film between China and the United Kingdom. The Chinese version is voiced by Jackie Chan who is known across the world for his martial arts movies.

The music matches the scenes seamlessly. I love how they tell a short story with each animal and how it makes the viewer invested in each and every one of them. They use clips taken over the course of several days and make them appear as one scene.

The moral of this film is that there is beauty all around us that can be seen every day. We must only look around us to see it. I feel that this is an important and inspirational message to appreciate our world, this isn't being said enough.

I give Earth: One Amazing Day 5 out of 5 stars for its unbelievable graphics and storytelling. I recommend it to children ages 6 to 18 and think that adults will also
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - Abdul Karim arrives from India to participate in Queen Victoria's golden jubilee. The young clerk is surprised to find favor with the queen herself. As Victoria questions the constrictions of her long-held position, the two forge an unlikely and devoted alliance that her household and inner circle try to destroy. As their friendship deepens, the queen begins to see a changing world through new eyes, joyfully reclaiming her humanity.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I enjoyed watching the British-American biographical drama, Victoria and Abdul. I learned facts about Queen Victoria, the British ruler of India and the real-life relationship between Queen Victoria (Judy Dench) and her Indian servant, Abdul Karim (Ali Fazal). Directed by Stephen Frears and written by Lee Hall, it is based on a book written by Shrabani Basu. The film has regal pomp and circumstances, life lessons and humorous elements.

We see Abdul (Ali Fazal), a clerk in India, happily going about his duty recording the names of prisoners in a big log book. He is selected to travel to the UK to present a gold mohar, a coin, as part of the Queen's jubilee celebration. Abdul is selected because of his height. He is tall and very handsome.

Abdul is instructed on how to present the mohar to the Queen. He is told not look at the Queen and Abdul, because of his reverence for the Queen, decides to kiss her feet. This is the beginning of a unique relationship.

Abdul begins to share with Queen Victoria facts about India. He tells her about the Taj Mahal, Indian customs and teaches her Urdu. The Queen's viewpoint about how she rules begins to change as she learns more about the country and its customs.

My favorite scene is when the staff of Queen Victoria opposes her decision to give Abdul knighthood. Her son attempts to have her declared insane. She insists on facing the staff in person and she says, "I am cantankerous, greedy and fat. I am perhaps, disagreeably, attached to power. But I am anything but insane."

Victoria and Abdul shows the beautiful countryside of the UK, Scotland and India as well as some of the famous sites such as Windsor Castle. The costumes designed by Consolata Boyle, pay meticulous attention to historical detail even down to the Queen's monogrammed shoes.

This film is a story about a different kind of friendship and how it influenced the lives of everyone in their circle and beyond. I recommend it for ages 13 to 18 and some adults will enjoy it as well. You can experience the royal pomp and circumstances of Victoria and Abdul at your local theater when it opens September 22, 2017

Reviewed by Juanita L., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This incredible, historical film opened my eyes and made me better understand the world I live in. Given that racism is still a prevalent issue in today's society, it was mind-boggling to see it in Britain, at the turn of the 20th century. I admire how this film brings the past to the present, and made me question how racism can dissipate in the future.

This film carefully documents the relationship between Queen Victoria and her beloved servant, Abdul Karim. Queen Victoria reigned in the United Kingdom from 1837 to 1901. She was the longest serving monarch in world history. In addition to being a queen, she was also the Empress of India. Because of this, Abdul Karim and his friend Mohammed are sent from India to Britain to deliver a sacred coin: the Mohur. Abdul and Mohammed believe they are only going to remain in Britain for a short period of time, but they end up going on the adventure of a lifetime.

Judi Dench, who plays Queen Victoria, exceptionally portrays a queen who is tired of her constriction. All she wants to do is have Abdul be her full-time servant, but because of his origins, Queen Victoria's staff does not approve. Ali Fazal, who plays Abdul Karim, considers the queen a very special person and his kindness towards her is impeccable. He teaches her the Quran and shares his culture with her. As time goes on, both develop a strong friendship, which is truly heartwarming.

The setting is remarkable. I've never seen the Taj Mahal, Scotland or the queen's palace. This film takes the audience to all these places. After seeing the beauty in other countries, it makes me want to travel the world. My favorite part of this film is when Queen Victoria eats with her staff. She eats very quickly and, once she finishes her food, regardless if the others are done or not, the servants take all of the food away. It's hilarious to see people still eating their meals and have their food taken away in the blink of an eye.

The message of this film is that no race, culture or religion is subordinate to another, even though individuals are from many different backgrounds. Britain is usually portrayed as one of the most powerful countries, but not in this film. We have to learn to not categorize others as inferior because of their lifestyle. Differences make society beautiful. If we were all the same, everything would be boring.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 15 to 18 as well as adults. There are undertones of adult subject matter throughout the film. Queen Victoria is infatuated with much a younger, married man, which is why an older audience is more suitable for it. Check it out when it opens in select theaters on September 22, 2017. I guarantee you've never seen anything like this before.

By Samantha M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17

How could the Empress of the British Empire and a poor Indian clerk possibly have anything at all in common? The fact that there is much that they share is a major theme in Victoria and Abdul. One example is that they are both in "prison." You first see scenes with Abdul and Queen Victoria in their native habitats: waking up, doing their jobs and, we see that they both exist in confined situations. Abdul works in an actual Indian prison, doing a very boring job and Victoria later says she is "in prison" because she cannot do what she wants to do, which is to explore the world. In one surprising scene, Victoria actually falls asleep at the table at her Golden Jubilee dinner! Abdul catches her eye and he becomes a window to the wonderfully exotic world of Indian culture.

Every British character in this story, except Victoria, is a terrible racist. The Royal staff of Queen Victoria disapproves of her friendship with Abdul and are constantly conspiring to sabotage their relationship. In contrast, Queen Victoria is fascinated by India, the languages, architecture and just about everything. She wants to explore India, but she cannot because if she does, she likely will be assassinated by the oppressed Indian people. Her son and heir Bertie (later King Edward VII) is the most hateful of all. One of the first things he does as king is to burn all evidence of his mother's 14-year friendship with Abdul that exists among his mother's papers and photographs.

One of the things that really stood out for me in this movie was the dialogue. Many wonderful actors are very lucky to bring life to this well-crafted screenplay. Judi Dench, as Queen Victoria, is really funny and dramatic at the same time. Ali Fazal, as Abdul, is amazing because he shows the care, love and respect the character has for the Queen. Of course, Michael Gambon is appropriately arrogant as the Prime Minister (although his distinctive voice keeps bringing Dumbledore to mind!) Eddie Izzard, as Queen Victoria's son Bertie, is also phenomenal as the worst villain in a movie full of them - very realistic and believable. The director Stephen Frears and the writer Lee Hall are amazing because they capture an important piece of history in an entertaining way. (When I found out Lee Hall wrote Billy Elliot, I knew this movie was going to be great.)

I give Victoria and Abdul 5 out of 5 stars because it tells the remarkable story about how two people from very different worlds come together as friends. I recommend this movie ages 13 to 18 because there are no intense moments and the plot is slightly complex. There are only funny, sweet, beautiful and some sad moments. You can see Victoria and Abdul in theaters when it opens on September 22, 2017.

By Lucia Funaro, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 18
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 3-8
Description - Adventure takes flight with the plucky P. King Duckling! Meet P. King, a slightly hapless but intrepid young duck, and his two best friends, Chumpkins (a sarcastic pig) and Wombat (who helps P. King with his schemes even though she knows better)! Together, they work to seize the day: which always leads to wild adventures and hilarious consequences. Created by award-winning Josh Selig (Sesame Street, Wonder Pets!) and featuring music from Grammy winner Marty Beller of They Might Be Giants, P. King Duckling is a wholly satisfying family experience that engages children in problem-solving and creative thinking: all while quacking you up!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is a cute show about a group of friends who take funny adventures and find solutions to problems along the way. P. King is a funny duckling who constantly gets the group into trouble with his big adventures. Luckily, he has two friends that help keep him centered and out of trouble. There's Wombat who always supports P. King's decisions and Chumpkins, an attitude-riddled pig who is the muscle of the group. He is my personal favorite because he is funny and sarcastic all the time. This trio deals with the bad guy, Greg the Goose and teaches us that there are many creative solutions to even the smallest of problems. My 19-month-old absolutely loves this program. The art style reminds me of Phineas and Ferb. I recommend this DVD for ages 3 to 7 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. My only complaint is its lack of story depth. Everything is over simplified, which is expected for the target age group, but I wanted more. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The fun adventures shared here are creative and quite enjoyable. The lessons that P. King Duckling, Wombat and Chumpkins teach are also quite useful. The animation in this show is simple with lots of colors and shapes. It is perfect for kids. It is easy to follow and understand so you can do some of the experiments that they do in your imagination.

My favorite episode is "Wombats Big Surprise!" This episode is so funny and enjoyable because of the humor and how Wombat doesn't know about her big surprise birthday party. I also love that Chumpkins and P. King Duckling hide things. It also teaches you about patience, which is a difficult lesson.

My favorite character is Wombat (Courtney Shaw). She is smart, creative and likes to help her friends. Wombat knows how to make lots of fun things such as painting pictures. Courtney Shaw voices Wombat and makes her sound very inquisitive and caring. She fills Wombat's voice with lots of emotion in all the episodes, which is something I admire. P. King Duckling (Marc Thompson) is very goodhearted and a silly duck who loves adventure. He finds new fun ways of doing things such as cooling the town he lives in during a heat wave, jogging the Great Wall of China and many more that have great moral values. Marc Thompson's P. King Duckling has an adorable voice that sounds like a nerd which brings P. King Duckling to life and makes him enjoyable.

Chumpkins (Benjie Randall) is a computer geek and loves technology. Chumpkins is proud of this and wears a shirt with a computer on it. Whenever you need something delivered house right away, have Chumpkins order it online. He also knows a lot about gadgets and gizmos so he is the Pig to call. Benjie Randall makes Chumpkins sound older then he is and that is reflected in his personality and makes you believe he is very smart.

Some of the life lessons in this story are about being a good friend, what friendship really is, how to exercise creativity, using your imagination and learn how to work as a team. The lessons are very valuable, because even I forget how to be a good friend sometimes. It is a great reminder about how to be a good friend for older kids while teaching younger kids the basics of friendship. It reminds you to use your brains and work with others when trying to solve problems.

I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 8. Even tweens and teens will benefit from it the life lessons are priceless and everyone will enjoy the characters with their quacky, quirk personalities. I give this DVD 5 out of 5 Quacking Ducks. This is available now on DVD so, check it out. You'll be glad you did.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 110 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-7 Suggested Retail Price: $ 12.65 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 3-8
Description - Join the Floogals on a mission of discovery as they explore Earth and the funny hoomans who live there! Each day, Captain Fleeker, First Officer Flo, and Junior Boomer encounter something that sparks their curiosity, setting in motion the day s research project and triggering an exciting adventure! First, the Floogals have an adventure in which they must learn the difficult task of assembling the Girl Hooman s jigsaw puzzle. They learn working in a team wins the day! The projects continue with investigating Boy Hooman s building of a model rocket, learning how to fly a toy helicopter to rescue Boomer, discovering who stole Dad Hooman s veggies in the garden and so much more! Adventure is everywhere they go. They re the Floogals! 3, 2, 1, let s go!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - As far as young children's programming goes, Floogals is one of my favorites. The adventures that the Floogals take are so unique and fun. It makes you wish that you were there as well. One of my favorite episodes is when the Floogals try to assemble a human jigsaw puzzle and it is horribly funny. I'm not a puzzle gal myself and I was shocked to see these little guys make something such as assembling a jigsaw puzzle interesting. This program really has a way of making normal everyday events into huge fantastical events for the Floogals. The animation is cute with bright, eye-catching colors. My 19-month-old cracked up the whole time he was watching. I recommend this for ages 4 to 8, but I am most definitely letting my little guy watch it now. I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars for being so darn creative! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This hilarious animated series had me laughing the entire time. Seeing aliens interact with humans is something I've never witnessed before, and the obstacles that the Floogals face are incredibly unique. As soon as I began watching the series, the Floogals have to face a giant cat, which did not fail to make me laugh. With many twists and turns, you will never get bored.

A story is about three aliens from outer space, Captain Fleeker, First Officer Flo and Junior Boomer who experience many exciting adventures with humans. They must stay hidden, conduct research projects and report back to their space captain about what it's like to live on earth. The Floogals learn about jigsaw puzzles, mail, a model rocket, a helicopter and so much more! And, if they do a good job with their research, they get badges to wear on their uniforms. Join Fleeker, Flo and Boomer as they learn what it's like to be a "hooman."

Rasmus Hardiker, who plays Captain Fleeker, is the lead Floogal. Fleeker always manages to come up with solutions to problems that the Floogals face. For example, when the Floogals ruin a jigsaw puzzle that a little girl built, they have to find a way to rebuild it before she comes back. Hardiker's voice is very deep, but it's also very optimistic, which makes his character very relatable. Hugo Harold- Harrison, who plays Boomer, is the funniest character I've ever seen. Boomer doesn't think before he acts, which lands him in difficult situations. Boomer is in charge of watching the cat while the other Floogals rebuild the jigsaw puzzle. Harrison's voice is filled with fear, which makes it hilarious.

The animation in this show is very realistic. The house that the Floogals live in looks just like mine! Their uniforms are the coolest uniforms I've ever seen. I wish I could be a Floogal! My favorite part about this series is its theme song. It is incredibly catchy, so prepare to have it get stuck in your head. I love the ending of each episode, because Fleeker, Flo and Boomer each provide their personal perspective about their daily adventures. It's great to hear their differing opinions, which makes their friendship work. Fleeker, Flo and Boomer are undoubtedly best friends, and you'll wish that you could join them on their adventures.

The message of this series is to explore everything that life has to offer and to keep an open mind. The Floogals are nothing like humans, but they learn to love what humans can do. I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 4 to 8. With non-stop adventures and many jokes, there is something for everyone to enjoy. This DVD is available on September 12, 2017 so, be sure to look for it. I can't wait to watch the second series.

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

Floogals: Mission Complete is a spectacular DVD. It has great animation, a great way to teach kids about day to day things and the Floogals are such a great way to get kids hooked on learning. It has an amazing dynamic and a review of everything they learn at the end, so the kids don't forget. It also never has a dull moment, so it will keep kids very interested and wanting to watch more.

Floogals is about three little aliens that move into a "hoomans" house. Everyday, they discover something new about Earth and they investigate. While doing that, they teach kids about all those things. There is a wide variety of episodes from teaching kids how mail works, to finding out how seeds grow.

This show has such amazing animation. The Floogals are little animated aliens, but they live in a live action world. It's so cool to see them pick up objects that aren't animated and they still look like real objects. Another thing I really like is the personalities of all the Floogals. Take Boomer for example. He relates to kids that are more shy and helps them be more out there just like him. I also love the way each episode is formatted. Every episode starts with the Floogals seeing something they don't understand. Then, they find funny uses for it and, in the end when they find out what it is, they go over everything they learned. It's a great tool to help kids remember what they learn. One of my favorite episodes is "Project Mail." I really like it because, as a kid, I never would have known how mail worked and this would have been really cool for me to watch at a younger age. If I could change one thing about the Floogals, it would be how long Boomer's name is. On the show they call him Junior-Floogal-Boomer. I think it would be better as just Boomer.

The message of this show is that you should go out and learn something new every day. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars for its great animation, awesome plots and incredible characters. I recommend this DVD for ages 3 to 6. This DVD will be released on September 12, 2017 so be sure to check it out.

By Dariana A., KIDS FIRST Film Critics, age 11.
Runtime: 95 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 4 - 12
Description - The action-packed new season of the franchise continues with the story of Tiny, an adorable Yorkie pup who, after winning the 'Pup Star' TV singing competition, is suddenly launched into an adventure when she's replaced by a street Yorkie, Scrappy, and the two swap lives in a dog-filled, fish-out-of-water tale that ultimately demonstrates life truly is 'better together.'
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I have to admit that I liked this so much more than I thought I would. The dogs are absolutely adorable and they storyline, while a bit trite, is quite suitable for its intended audience. The humans are all pretty stereotyped and goofy but in a good way. This is one of those films that I definitely recommend for kids, especially dog lovers. My hat is off to the animators for making the dogs appear to be speaking. They way their mouths move is pretty credible. I would definitely take my granddaughter to this! I give it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 12. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Air Bud Entertainment has done it again and created a fun-filled family film with this follow up sequel to Pup Star. I like the movie because the story has a fun adventure and also introduces lots of new characters including the disco dog Shampoo, the perfect pal P.U.P. (Mackenzie Sol) and the "cantankerous" Kitty Purry (Madison Pettis).

The story begins when Roland (Jed Rees) and Bark (George Newbern) kidnap Tiny (Kaitlyn Maher); or should I say dognap. Scrappy (Kaitlyn Maher) is put in Tiny's place for the Pup Star finals because Bark wants revenge on Tiny. My favorite scene is Shampoo's disco party! It is hilarious because it is quite unusual to see dogs dancing. Wow! He slides all around and spins on the ground like fidget spinner. My next favorite scene is in Kitty Purry's cat alley. When Roland enters, his clothes are in perfect condition, but when he comes out, his entire outfit is in shreds.

My favorite characters are Tiny, Scrappy and Roland. Tiny is so loveable and a great singer. Scrappy is an awesome rapper with lots of attitude. Roland thinks he is pretty smart but he's really like a dodo bird. It's so funny that in almost every scene something bad happens to him which made me laugh like a howling husky.

I absolutely love the music because it includes rap, pop, country, upbeat and sad songs that draws you in and touches your heart. Kaitlyn Mayer has an amazing and versatile voice. She is able to not only sing pop but rap like nobody's business. I like the special effects because they make the talking dogs and facial expressions look so real and, by the end of the movie, I believed that dogs can really talk and sing. Can't they?

I don't want to give away the ending, but you'll most likely have tears in your eyes. The heartfelt messages of the film are about sticking together and that families are better together. I recommend this to ages 3 to 13. I rate this film 5 out of 5 Pup Stars. I highly encourage you to see this film! It is available on VOD August 29, 2017 so go check it out.

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

This wonderful, animated film is one of my all-time favorites. Firstly, it's about dogs. Secondly, any kind of dog you can imagine is in this film, so you are sure to love at least one. If you don't love dogs as much as I do, that's okay, because there are plenty of cats to go around as well.

After Tiny, a Yorkshire terrier, wins the Pup Star finale, her fame begins to flourish. Having multiple interviews and traveling around the country, she's forced to remain astray from her family. Scrappy, an identical street Yorkshire terrier, switches lives with Tiny and their families and friends are completely unaware. Tiny and Scrappy encounter multiple adventures and learn a valuable life lesson: life is better together.

Kaitlyn Maher, who voices both Tiny and Scrappy, successfully illustrates the differences between the two, through Scrappy's low-pitched raps and Tiny's intense singing voice. During the film, there are also times where you aren't able to tell the difference. Mackenzie Moss, who plays Tiny's owner Lou, is the perfect dog owner. She loves Tiny more than anything in the world and, even though she's actually loving Scrappy for a majority of the film, her heart is always with Tiny. You can see it in her smile when it's Tiny's birthday. The entire house is decorated. There is a cake - what more could you ask for?

The set is incredible! It looks so similar to the set of America's Got Talent. The stage is filled with colorful lights, incredible singers and there's even a real audience. It feels as if you're a part of the show. My favorite part is when Tiny goes on "Jimmy Kibble Live" and competes with a super-fan. They play a game called "Who Knows Tiny Best?" Jimmy Kimmel Live is one of my favorite talk shows, so it is hilarious to see an imitation of it.

The message of the film is concise, yet extremely powerful: life is better when you're together. No matter who you may be with, as long as you have a support system, there is nothing that can tear you down. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 6 to18. Adults will love it too. You're never too young or old to love an animal. I fell in love with the first Pup Star film and seeing the second one made my heart melt. If you love animals as much as I do, this is undoubtedly the film for you. Catch this film on VOD August 29, 2017. I can't wait to see Pup Star 3.

By Samantha Marcus, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17

This film is a perfectly cute kid and family furry-friendly movie. Sorry, there are lots of puns in this film. It is clearly geared to younger kids, but at least I can say there is a very clear effort to make this film watchable for older siblings and even parents.

The story centers around a celebrity pooch named Tiny and a streetwise dog named Scrappy who are forced to switch places after Tiny is dog-napped. Scrappy is coerced to purposely lose The Pup Stars Final competition pretending to be Tiny.

First, I want to acknowledge the really good editing in this movie. Since most of the characters are dogs, you must make their lip movements and actions look convincing. And I must admit, the lip movements and actions actually do look real. That must have taken a lot of time. Kudos to the film's editor, Jason Dale. All the dogs in the film are likable and you just want to cuddle up with Tiny and Scrappy.

This film has some flaws in terms of its story. First, the humans are incredibly oblivious and bumbling. When Scrappy meets Tiny's family, she does a terrible job hiding that she isn't Tiny, yet they completely buy it. No one seems to realize Tiny and Scrappy have switched places. All the human characters are either self-absorbed or really incompetent. I also have an issue with how predictable the storyline is. I knew the big reveal within the first few minutes of the film. Not only that, this type of story has been done before. This movie is pretty much Parent Trap, but with dogs and an American Idol twist.

I have to say that the music is surprisingly really good. The song Tiny sings, "Is This For Real?" is pretty catchy and I even found it stuck in my head after the movie was over. The singing overall is also great. I admit, the movie's soundtrack is kind of a guilty pleasure for me.

Before the movie starts, it is revealed that they are working on Pup Stars 3 and I am curious how many movies they can make, especially since the first one only came out last year and they go straight to VOD. I wonder what the plot will be for the next movie and hope they don't depict the humans as totally incompetent next time.

I give this film 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 10, as this is a solid family film. It will be released on VOD on August 29, 2017 so, check it out.

By Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

Pup Star: Better 2Gether, the sequel to Pup Star, is an amazing original film that really hits the heart. The storyline is unique and the ending is so adorable. The film teaches the important messages of honesty and owning up to your mistakes. The storyline begins when Scrappy gets put up to impersonate Tiny. Bark instructs Scrappy to lose the Pup Star Competition as Tiny so that he can win. Bark kidnaps Tiny and tries to keep him contained. Eventually he escapes and tries to find his owner and reveal the truth.

Kaitlyn Maher voices two completely different characters and personalities well. She voices Tiny's sweet and affectionate personality and also voices Scrappy's rough, snarky personality. I also love the voice acting of Steve Valentine as Simon Growl. It is a really good Simon Cowell impression. At first, I thought it was actually Simon Cowell voicing his dog counterpart.

The animation that makes the dogs dance and talk looks so real. It is so cool to see the dogs break-dancing at the disco party. It is also amazing to see the dogs singing and talking. They sound beautiful and angelic.

My favorite character is Scrappy, because she is so courageous and has such a strong personality, even if she seems harsh. She is a great example of "don't judge a book by its cover." I don't want to give any spoilers, but she is very confident and knows what's right.

The message of this film is to have confidence in yourself and do what's right. Tiny has confidence that she can find her owner. She doesn't give up and that helps her greatly. Scrappy knows what's right and she becomes successful and happy at the end. These things benefit both dogs and the film teaches that it will benefit you as well. They are very important lessons that will help you throughout your life.

This film is very inspirational and super-cute. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages of 3 to 18. Who doesn't love puppies? Definitely check this film out when it comes out on VOD August 29, 2017.

By Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 1
Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Description - The Resilient Heart explores the keys to preventing heart disease on a worldwide scale. At the film's core is the story of Dr. Valent�n Fuster, a world-renowned cardiovascular scientist, and Director of Mount Sinai Heart and Physician-in-Chief at The Mount Sinai Hospital. Through his exploration of the heart at the molecular level, Dr. Fuster discovers that the real answer to defeating chronic disease lies in a much larger place: early education. By highlighting scientific contributions ranging from basic science to translational research, the film addresses the improvement of clinical and surgical care efforts to promote lifestyles that prevent or slow the progression of heart disease. Ultimately, it shows how the intersection of science, medicine, research, education and compassion bring about changes that are not only important but also replicable by physicians and patients throughout the world . The film follows Dr. Fuster and his team as they travel to Eldoret (Kenya), Bogota and more. If you or someone you know has ever been touched by a heart disease, you really must see this film. Directed by Susan Froemke. Cast: Dr. Valentin Fuster
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This inspirational film kept me glued to the edge of my seat. I didn't know that heart disease is the number one killer in society today. It fascinates me that there are incredible individuals in this world such as Dr. Valentin Fuster who want to make a difference in the lives of others, especially with a disease that is so common.

In this documentary promoting worldwide heart health, we see cardiologist Valentin Fuster working with doctors around the globe to help individuals realize that behavior is the key to combating heart disease. Traveling to countries like Kenya, Colombia and Grenada, Fuster works with both children and adults to help facilitate healthy behavior, through group therapy sessions, classroom instruction and community volunteering.

Valentin Fuster has the biggest heart. He flies to other countries once a week to help people. He gets up at 4:30 every morning, works 7 days a week and works with kids for 15 years to help them understand the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. I wish I could meet him, because I would love to thank him for all of the incredible work he has done for kids and adults around the world.

I really admire that the film is not based in a single geographical location. It is fascinating to see different cultures and compare them, and see how heart disease affects poor countries, which most people are not aware of. The fact that I was able to see how different areas of the world need so much help from future generations motivates me to follow in Fuster's footsteps - first starting in my own community, then making my impact even bigger.

My favorite part of this film is when Dr. Fuster talks about his motivation and says that if he died tomorrow, he would be okay with it, because he has helped so many people. This is rewarding to him.

The message of this film is that we have the power to keep our hearts healthy. You can start focusing on heart health at any age and, although we can't necessarily cure heart disease, we can prevent it by exercising, eating right and avoiding incredible amounts of stress. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 12 to 18. Adults would love it too. No age is too young to begin taking care of your heart. You can watch this film on Amazon now! This is the documentary of a lifetime.

By Samantha Marcus, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 3-8
Description - Welcome to Lily's Driftwood Bay! Lily is six years old and lives with her dad and her best friend, who is a seagull named Gull, in a little hut on the beach. Across the way is Driftwood Bay, a special island that exists in Lily's imagination. Every day the sea washes up a new treasure which sparks Lily's imagination about what might be happening on Driftwood Bay. Join Lily and her friends, Salty Dog, Bull, Nonna, Hatsie, Wee Rabbit and Lord Stag as they sail to Driftwood Bay where wonderful adventures await! Along with each adventure is a valuable lesson learned in each story from learning to tell the truth to saying sorry to asking for help. Embark on new adventures with Lily and friends as they travel to Driftwood Bay!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I love this series! Lily is a great role model and is so creative. A good chunk of this program follows Lily finding "treasures" that have washed up on the shore and being inspired to go on adventures that are based on those items. One the best parts of this series is that Lily resides in a single parent home. Her father is a wonderful character and they have such a great relationship. There aren't enough programs out there that show this type of relationship and I am very pleased to have found one. One of the best episodes on this DVD is called "A New Arrival." In this episode, Lily uses some of her treasures to make a beautiful gift for the new baby lamb. Episodes like this are why I love having my son watching it. There is a lot of heart in this program and the artwork is wonderful. It's mixed media that feels like a blend of colored pencils and water colors. I recommend this for ages 3 to 6 and give it five out of five stars. It's available on DVD now so, look for it! You'll be glad you did. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror, Adult
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This creative animated series made me feel like a little kid again. Lily's imagination is so big, and she is so creative, which is exactly how I felt when I was younger. With 52 unique adventures, there is never a dull moment in each episode.

Lily (Orlagh O' Keefe) is a 6-year-old girl who lives with her dad and a seagull on the beach. Right across from her is Driftwood Bay, an imaginary island that she has created. With each passing day, Lily finds a new object washed up on the shore. These objects give life to her Driftwood Bay imagination. Lily and her friends sail to Driftwood Bay and Lily learns valuable life lessons that keep her imagination alive.

Peter Mullan, who plays one of Lily's friends, Salty Dog, is easily one of the funniest actors that I've ever seen. Mullan portrays Salty as being vulnerable, especially in the episode, "The Honking Haddock," where Salty is unaware of his massive stench. Lily continues to tell him that he smells very bad, but Salty is clueless, which makes it hilarious. Salty is a cute Scottish dog who is the Captain of the boat that sails to Driftwood Bay and he always says, "Slippery scallions," which is sure to make you laugh.

The animation in the series is adorable! The characters look so friendly and look as if they are drawn by little kids! Because of this, the series is more relatable and entertaining. The characters aren't perfect and that is exactly how every person is. But, that is the beauty of life, and it is evident through Lily's big imagination.

My favorite part of this DVD collection is when Lily asks about flowers on the beach. She loves them, but her dad has to take them to the market. She is disappointed, but he brings her a flower at the end of the day. He says, "It's a lily for my Lily." I love puns and sweet moments, and this scene is fortunate enough to have both.

The messages of the show are to be creative, enjoy your life, learn from your mistakes and be nice to everyone you meet. Aside from these major life lessons, each episode has little ones asking for help and saying they are sorry. There is always something valuable to take away from each episode. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 8. Check out this series on DVD. You won't want to miss it.

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

This hilarious animated series is very educational and cute. Lily has a great heart and sets a good example for children who watch this. Lily is helpful, positive and caring to everyone no matter what. These shows teach really important morals about positivity, telling the truth and making sure you stay safe.

The episodes start when Lily finds some sort of weird treasure washed up on the beach. She goes to find out what it really is and what its true purpose is on Driftwood Bay, her imaginary island. She meets up with her friends on the island and some of them ask for her help. She tries to solve their problems and realizes that the tool she needs is one that she got on the shore. She realizes its purpose and learns a characteristic such as, grit, honesty, trust, forgiveness and being fair.

Orlagh O'Keefe voices Lily as a sweet, young and na�ve girl. She sounds innocent and ready learn everything she can. Salty Dog (Peter Mullan) really does sound like an old, rusty dog who has been out on the sea for a while, but speaks English. Salty Dog sounds very old, but looks very young, which I find somewhat confusing.

The animation has a lot more details than most animated TV shows do. For example, they show each of the strands in the hair, their faces look very life like, especially in the way the mouths move. This animation is made with a lot of quality which I appreciate.

There are lots of messages in these shows. Lily models being positive, caring, helpful, staying safe and being truthful. She is a great role model for kids and this DVD about her adventures allow her to teach multiple morals in just one episode. Mainly the show educates kids about having good character and following the golden rule - be kind to others if you want them to be kind to you. Lily is kind to others, so she has a lot of good friends that stick by her side.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for children ages 5 to 8. It is available now so, go check it out.

By Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 370 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.79 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Description - Evacuation of Allied soldiers from Belgium, the British Empire, and France, who were cut off and surrounded by the German army from the beaches and harbor of Dunkirk, France, between May 26- June04, 1940, during Battle of France in World War II. Samantha M. comments, "This unique film altered my perspective on daily life. It fascinates me how history has shaped our world. Viewing this film made me appreciate the security that we have in our country today." Michelle C. adds, "Dunkirk offers the most intense, beach set cinematic experience since the iconic film Jaws. In this new adaptation of such a strong battle, Christopher Nolan's talent as director and writer shines through, creating a visual masterpiece that leaves you mesmerized."
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Dunkirk offers the most intense, beach set cinematic experience since the iconic film Jaws. In this new adaptation of such a strong battle, Christopher Nolan's talent as director and writer shines through, creating a visual masterpiece that leaves you mesmerized. The battle of Dunkirk was a short one, May 26 to June 4, 1940. Despite its minimal timeframe, it was deadly. WWII Allied soldiers were hiding, surrounded on all sides by the German Army and had to be evacuated on the beaches of Dunkirk, by way of an operation famously known as Operation Dynamo.

On the ground, British Army Privates Tommy (Fionn Whitehead) and Alex (Harry Styles) are two of the men desperately fighting and struggling to remain alive and safely evacuate the beach, by whatever means available. Across the ocean, local sailors Mr. Dawson (Mark Rylance) and his son Peter (Toms Carney) had been recruited by the Navy to help with the evacuation. From yet another perspective, members of the Royal Air Force including Farrier (Tom Hardy) attempt to shoot down the German bombers, in order to help the stranded troops evacuate the beach and ocean safely. Let's talk about the production of the film. The cinematography, as expected from talented director and writer Christopher Nolan, is groundbreaking.

Congratulations to Hoyt van Hoyterman for creating a visual masterpiece. Everything looks incredibly realistic and breathtaking, keeping you on your toes throughout the film. The scene that is the most memorable to me, is when one of the Air Force pilots soar through the sunset sky as the troops cheer in victory. I assure you that it will give you goosebumps and make you teary-eyed. The sound effects and the music by Hans Zimmer make the movie that much more tangible. The bombing begins from the very start of the film, preparing you for an emotional rollercoaster. They are so loud that it sounds as if they're coming from the back of the theater. If you listen closely, there's a ticking clock throughout the entire film, (minus the ending, which I will keep under wraps for you to discover) hidden within each song, creating increased tension and suspense. By the end of the film, I was already down to the nub of my fingertips, so prepare to be antsy! Harry Styles' performance is quite impressive, particularly since he is a known as a singer, not an actor. It is refreshing to see his excellent performance her, as he is the one with the most lines and delivers them eloquently, equal to an experienced actor. Cillian Murphy and Tom Hardy also delivered remarkable performances. Dunkirk relies heavily on emotions since it barely has any dialogue, so it is important to have the story delivered by the visuals and the acting, which they achieved flawlessly. Dunkirk opens in theaters nationwide on July 21, 2017. It's 107 minutes long and is Rated PG-13 for intense war experiences and some language. Because of the stunning cinematography and storyline, I rate Dunkirk 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18. Go check it out, whether you are a history buff or not, this film will remind you how history affects us.

By Michelle C. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This unique film altered my perspective on daily life. It fascinates me how history has shaped our world. Viewing this film made me appreciate the security that we have in our country today. Based on the historical account of World War II, Dunkirk highlights the tension within the British Empire, France and Belgium, as the German army begins to make brutal attacks. In hopes of keeping Dunkirk intact, the allied soldiers are evacuated by boats and must fight for their lives at sea.

Fionn Whitehead plays the lead British soldier, Tommy, and his acting is incredible! He doesn't have many lines, which makes his acting stand out. You can empathize with Tommy just by looking into his eyes and see the pain he's experiencing as he is fighting for his life. Harry Styles plays Alex, another one of the British soldiers. Styles doesn't have many lines either, since Dunkirk heavily emphasizes war battle scenes rather than dialogue. When Alex does speak, his words are powerful. In one of the scenes, he tries to convince the other soldiers that Gibson (Aneurin Barnard) is a German spy.

Alex's anger is discernible. You can see how long he has been hiding his emotions and how much the war is taking a toll on him. Dunkirk is set on the beaches of Northern France. The views are breathtaking, but it is depressing to see such a beautiful place being bombed. However, it does motivate the soldiers to protect their country, which is why the director, Christopher Nolan, emphasizes the soldiers' surroundings. My favorite part of the film is when the soldiers are being fed bread with raspberry jam. They look incredibly happy to be eating after days of stress. This scene makes me appreciate how much I have. All I want to do is help these soldiers, get them to safety and thank them for all their hard work. The message is to never give up and to recognize the impact World War II made on our country. Hard work pays off. We should never forget our fallen soldiers and appreciate how they changed our lives and countries for the better. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars.

Since there is little dialogue, it can be confusing at times, but it is unique. I recommend it to ages 16 to18, and adults will enjoy it too. There are many fatalities, gunshots and dead bodies, so it is not particularly for little kids. It depends on your tolerance level. Check out this film in theaters nationwide when it opens on July 21, 2017. You won't want to miss it.

By Samantha M. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic

This movie is very timely, considering Brexit, in its subject matter of national British pride. Director Christopher Nolan reaches back to one of England's greatest points of pride before the U.S.A.'s entry into the war, namely, the against-the-odds evacuation from the town of Dunkirk, France to preserve 400,000 British troops. This movie is Nolan's love letter to England and the men and women who gave their lives to guard and protect her. Back in England, one representative patriot is a duty-bound father, played by Mark Rylance, whose boat, like many other boats in England, is requisitioned by the Royal Navy evacuate the stranded in Dunkirk. His story connects with that of two RAF pilots sent on a mission to protect the skies while the naval operation is undertaken. The only drawback of the film is that none of the characters is fleshed out enough to make the audience connect with them on a more emotional level. But this is, after all, war. Nolan's realistic account is both a visual and auditory masterpiece. The scenery is magnificent. I have never seen a movie in which there are so many scenes without dialogue. One of the most remarkable sequences is the aerial flight sequence. I actually felt as if I was flying! IMAX adds to the already impressive immersive quality of the movie. I recommend this film for ages 15 to 18 because it gets a bit intense. I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars because it tells the incredible true story about how all of England came together to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of young soldiers. By the way, teenage girls will agree with me that Harry Styles isn't too shabby. This is s his first movie and his realistic acting is truly amazing. This film opens in theaters nationwide Friday, July 21, 2017 so, go check it out. By Lucia F. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 2-7
Description - Join Molang, a round, fluffy, and happy rabbit, and his friend, Piu Piu, a poised, timid, and reserved yellow chick, as they explore everyday life. Molang savors every moment of his life, imbuing it with joy and wonder. He pays attention to the smallest details, giving meaning to even the tiniest things. Molang puts his heart into his actions, and he has a huge heart. Even when he does absolutely nothing, he does it well! Piu Piu, on the other hand, doesn't t like calling attention to himself. He likes to do things carefully and well. When unexpected situations arise (and Molang s unpredictable behavior often causes such situations to occur!), Piu Piu can become quickly unsettled, even panicked. Despite their many differences, Molang and Piu Piu enjoy a unique friendship. They have amazing times together ranging from the mundane to the extraordinary. From finding themselves in a lifeboat in the middle of the ocean to riding camels in the desert, Molang and Piu Piu experience unexpected situations. Throughout it all though, every single moment with these two is filled with happiness. Embark on 52 unforgettable adventures with Molang and Piu Piu!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Molang is about a very cute relationship between Molang, a joyful rabbit and Piu Piu, a reluctant chick. Their dynamic is adorable and, together they go on many adventures and have great fun. The animation in this program is amazing and fun. The fluffy thick lines make it very kid-friendly and hold the attention of the viewer. There are many episodes on this DVD and my favorite is called "The Underground Walk." In this episode, the duo goes on an underground tour and, due to their mischievous behavior and lack of discipline, they get lost from the tour group and must work together to find their way out of the tunnels. I like this episode because you really get a good taste of why they work so well together and you get the feeling that maybe without each other they could not accomplish as much. I recommend this for ages 2 to 6 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror, Adult.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Molang: Season 1 is full of fun and laughter! Molang and Piu Piu's innocent demeanor makes them lovable characters that I rooted for every step of the way. Their love for each other and their society made me fall in love with both of them. Each episode is overrun with happiness which made me smile nonstop.

The story follows the everyday life of a fluffy rabbit named Molang and its best friend Piu Piu the chicken. On their journeys together, Molang and Piu Piu face different situations and find creative ways to help others and fix their unique problems. Together, they happily enjoy the surprises their lives bring.

There is no dialogue in this show, but the animation and music easily make it understandable. The animation is bright and rounded giving it a soft and calming feeling. During the daytime, the trees, hills and grass are radiant shades of yellows, greens, pinks and oranges. It adds to the brightness of the mood when Molang and Piu Piu are adventuring through their world. During the night, the aura changes as the colors turn soft shades of purples and blues. The hills, trees, snow, sand and nature are drawn with different colorful patterns as are the walls, floors and ceilings which adds a playful and cheerful feeling. The character's expressions easily convey their thoughts and increase the visual appeal.

The music spoke to me as the dialogue would. Throughout the different episodes, the music changes whenever the situations change. For example, when Molang and Piu Piu are going to the beach or on vacation, the music becomes lively and venturesome. When they run into a problem, the music transforms to a slow rhythm. The music imbued the feelings of Molang and Piu Piu into me. It made me feel a part of their journey.

My favorite part of this show is the character, Molang the bunny. Molang never gets worried and always remains calm when everything seems to be going wrong for Piu Piu. Molang is quick to think of ideas and does anything to help others. Therefore, Molang took a spot in my heart.

The messages of the show address the importance of friendship, teamwork, kindness, loving everybody and helping those in need. I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 8. Check out Molang: Season 1 on DVD when it is released on August 15, 2017.

By Sahiba Kaur, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 15

This delightful series had me laughing the entire time. I enjoyed it tremendously, because there is no dialogue. Each episode is filled with multiple adventures, so you will never be bored!

You are invited to join Molang and Piu Piu as they explore what life has to offer. Molang is a big, ecstatic rabbit, who finds ways to enjoy his life in every circumstance. Piu Piu is his best friend, a small, shy little chick who is dragged along on every adventure and is often frightened by the unexpected situations they both face. These best friends are completely opposite, but both manage to experience happiness in every situation.

Bruno Gueracague, the sound coordinator, composed an extremely catchy, opening song. While there are 52 episodes, it only takes two to get it stuck in your head, which is a great way for kids to remember the series. Marie-Caroline Villand, one of the series' directors, successfully communicates themes of happiness and friendship to kids, no matter their culture or dialect. The absence of dialogue leaves the interpretation up to the audience, which gives something for everyone to relate to.

The animation is adorable and leaves you on the edge of your seat the entire time. The characters are incredibly cute, which makes them very relatable. I could not stop watching the series, because I love the unique friendship that Molang and Piu Piu share. My favorite episode is, "The Goldfish." Molang and Piu Piu try to get the goldfish's attention and have a disco party, which is hilarious. The fish loves the party, so next time you want your fish's attention, make sure to involve a disco ball!

The themes of the series are happiness, friendship, respect and unity. It is important to maintain great friendships, live your life to the fullest, care for one another and stick together.

I give this series a 5 out of 5 stars, recommend it to kids ages 3 to 18 and believe that adults will enjoy it too. I could not stop laughing, because it is funny seeing animals act as people in everyday situations. Check out Molang: Season 1 on DVD now, because it will undoubtedly make you laugh.

By Samantha Marcus, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17
Runtime: 185 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-7 Suggested Retail Price: $ 12.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - Grab Your Popcorn, Because The Equestria Girls Are Back For A Magic-Filled Triple Feature!? ?DANCE MAGIC? - When Rarity finds out about a music video competition, she's eager to convince her friends at Canterlot High to enter the contest. The girls soon learn that Crystal Prep Academy are also interested in participating in the contest. The students at CPA have many more resources and are better dancers! Will they be able to pull together and make a winning music video?? MOVIE MAGIC? - The Equestria Girls have been specially invited by A.K. Yearling to go on the set of the upcoming Daring Do movie and they are overjoyed. For super-fan Rainbow Dash, watching behind the scenes as her favorite heroine comes to life is a dream come true. But when a rare and important prop from the set goes missing, putting the movie on hold, Rainbow Dash's dream becomes a nightmare.? MIRROR MAGIC?- As the pages in her journal run out, there's only one thing for Sunset Shimmer to do: return to Equestria to get a new journal! There, she meets Starlight Glimmer and agrees to bring her back to experience life at Canterlot High. But while Sunset Shimmer was away, a revenge-seeking Juniper Montage finds a beautiful hand mirror enchanted with Equestrian magic. Not only can it provide a window into another land, but if you push the right button, it can also make things disappear into limbo, trapped between the two realms.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - As always, My Little Pony has delivered a wonderful, heartfelt of episodes on this DVD. I always enjoy watching how well the episodes are chosen to be consolidated for the specific DVDs such as this one, Magical Movie Night. There are so many lessons packed into this DVD from feeling betrayed to feeling unsure of oneself. I love how the cast of ponies handles these problems and creates a familiar story that becomes a beacon of hope and reassurance for children who have gone or will go through similar trials. My favorite episode on this DVD is called "Movie Magic." In this episode, you get to see Rainbow Dash as a fan girl to a movie franchise and discover that the movie world isn't all it's cracked up to be. The animation in this collection is great, as always, and the music is fun and catchy. One of the best parts of the DVD is the bonus feature sing-along. This is a great DVD that I recommend for ages 5 to 12 and it definitely gets 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror, Adult
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This animated film has a great storyline and important morals that I loved to watch. Plus, all of the characters have their own unique personalities, which is cool to see. The animation is spot on with detailed facial expressions and body language of the characters.

The stories, Dance Magic, Movie Magic and Mirror Magic are all about friendship, teamwork, persevering and forgiving. In the stories, the Equestria Girls work together solving obstacles that come up. They befriend, forgive and help their enemies. The Equestria Girls create peace among every one and teach others to create peace as well.

Ali Liebert makes Juniper Montage sound very determined, jealous and greedy, but also shows Juniper's hurt side, where she is apologetic and depressed. Tabitha St. Germain portrays Rarity as very elegant, creative and calm. But at times, she is easily frustrated and very competitive. The animation for all of the My Little Pony films is really cute and detailed. I love this type of animation. The backgrounds are very detailed and the animation is really pleasing to watch.

My favorite part is when Pinky Pie's (Andrea Libman) dream comes true when she sees a building made of pudding. Her eyes light up and you can see her pure happiness. I really love this part because it made me really happy to see Pinky Pie so excited. The pudding also looks delicious

The message of these stories is that you should be kind to everyone, no matter what. Also, it promotes forgiving people and giving them second chances. The Equestrian Girls have their stuff and their ideas stolen, but they still forgive and become great friends even with the thieves. This collection of stories teaches children to have a good heart and enjoy life in the moment.

This is a wonderful DVD with big messages. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 8. This DVD is available August 8, 2017, be sure to check it out.

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

With three unique stories and beautiful animation, this DVD collection entertains younger audiences while teaching them about friendship. It has a room for improvement and is far from the best of the My Little Pony Friendship is Magic series. Like the previous shows and movies of this series, the three episodes focus heavily on adventure and comedy. The episodes all teach kids about friendship, teamwork and many other positive behavior. At times, the stories concentrate more on action or drama but they are never too mature for young children.

The three episodes start after the latest film, My Little Pony: Equestria Girls - Legend of Everfree. The stories are all different, but generally focus on seven girls solving problems together. At the end, an answer comes to them and they all learn an important message about friendship. Watching at least the previous film is helpful to the viewer since there are some references to previous plot elements. It would be very difficult to enjoy this DVD without having any prior experience with the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic series.

Overall, this DVD has an enjoyable series of stories. They are bright, educational and are simple enough for younger kids to understand. Compared to the previous films and shows, the quality has dropped in some places. One of the strongest outliers to me is the comedy. In the past, the main character called Pinkie Pie (Andrea Libman) often plays a comedic role. In this collection, the comedy doesn't come out goofy and funny as it usually does. It feels forced and almost annoying. Something else that I found lacking is the conflict in the stories. The first episode, Dance Magic, really suffers the most. The conflict in this episode focuses on the girls trying to raise money for a spring dance. Sadly, it has no good introduction and is simply explained at the beginning. This makes it not too important to the viewer and the way the characters treat this issue furthers the problem. One thing that has stayed consistent throughout the series is the voice acting and animation. Both have still maintained high quality and are one of the best parts of the show.

Out of the three, my favorite episode is Mirror Magic. The storyline is quite unique. It's about a girl jealous of the seven friends who puts six of them in a magic mirror. It's up to the seventh, Sunset Shimmer and her new friend Starlight Glimmer. This plays out interestingly in the show as Starlight, just like Sunset, is a villain turned good. This makes for some interesting chemistry between the two, which is entertaining.

As always, this series is meant for kids. For that reason, I recommend it for ages 7 to 13. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars for an overall good collection of episodes and high-quality animation, but a lack of good conflicts and a drop in quality.

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Runtime: 66 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 13.99 Media: DVD

Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12 - 18
Description - Naturalist and 19th century painter, John James Audubon was one of the most remarkable men of early America. The program brings to life his timeless paintings with dazzling footage of the living birds he immortalized - and celebrates visually the natural world he described in his writings. Interviews reveal the man, explore his art, and put his groundbreaking work in modern perspective.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This documentary gives an in-depth history of the life of John James Audubon. There are many examples of his beautiful works of art, maps charting his journey from Haiti to America and excerpts from the journals he kept throughout his life. This DVD offers a great way to teach anyone about John James Audubon. The art and story telling is not only beautiful and interesting, but important scientifically and in regards to American history.

The film flows well with great detail and historical accuracy. The material is easily understood and, after scientific elaborations, often a more simplified explanation is given. John James Audubon was a man of incredible talent and fortitude. He faced many challenges such as childhood abandonment, adult poverty and immigration during the 1800s. The film wonderfully details not only his countless contributions to art, science and conservation, but the challenges he faced and surpassed are an equally important part of his story. This film will prompt many questions regarding many topics! Throughout it, Audubon's travels are documented on a virtual map. The map brings about questions regarding geography, immigration, cultural differences, animal species of North America and many other topics that appeal to many age groups.

The film has great visual appeal. It is filmed in locations where Audubon painted and, throughout it, these works are shown in all their glory. Selections of Audubon's original journal entries are seen for the first time in this film as well. The cover of the DVD and the CD have iconic Audubon images titled "Wild Turkey" and "The Great Horned Owl". This offers the option of viewing the 90 minute theatrical version or the 60 minute broadcast version. English subtitles are available. Scene selection is not available, but you can pause, rewind or fast forward as necessary.

Audubon is such a great film about the life and contributions of John James Audubon. His struggle and journey as a Haitian immigrant to the United States of America is inspiring. The paintings he created forever immortalized the subjects (some of which are now extinct) and the research he did ultimately led to our nation's first conservation organization. This film will prompt many questions regarding many topics including birds, painting, hiking and travel, American history in the early 1800s and more. The message of this film is in its detailed historical look at the life and contributions of John James Audubon to art, science and Conservation.

I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 8 to 18, plus adults. Audubon will be available on DVD June 20, 2017. Reviewed by Eli B., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult review
Runtime: 150 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 17.99 Media: DVD

Series: E-BOOK, AGES 12-18
Description - The story is about a man named John Wilson, who has no talents and no aspirations. He is certain that he will never live up to his parents' expectations. He's forever stuck in the shadows of his quarterback older brother and his younger sister, a child prodigy. However, just as he comes to accept his dull existence, a series of extraordinary and devastating events changes John's life forever. John goes on a journey that turns out to be anything but ordinary as he embraces his own destiny in this adventurous and inspirational story of love, loss and loyalty. It turns out anything is possible.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is an amazing story with well-thought out writing and wisdom. The strongest aspect are the characters and the lesson to be learned. John is just an average guy with a brother and sister who are above average, but he truly is the lucky and amazing one. It is entertaining and eye-opening and a great way to learn some important life lessons. If I had to sum this book up in one word, I would say that word would be "Wow!"

The characters are the most appealing aspect of the story. Besides that, it is different and unique and offers a whole lots of life wisdom. It is entertaining and the kind of book that is hard to put down. I found myself rooting for the main character many times. It follows the life of the main character, John and his journey from childhood to adulthood. Some may think he is unlucky, including himself but he learns a valuable lesson about how really lucky he is. This is an eye-opening revelation. I think that teenagers will relate to this story quite well.

John is a very positive role model. His being an average guy with a prodigy sister and jock older brother puts a great spin on the story. I also think that the family dynamics and the friend relationships are explained extremely well and I enjoyed reading about John, his family and his friendships. There are a couple of negative characters, but they really don't win in the end and I feel they served an important role.

It flows well from beginning to ending and it makes sense. Many times as I was reading, I just sat there in awe about how such a young author could have such knowledge beyond his years. I can imagine this on the big screen one day. The story has great visual appeal and the book's cover is amazing.

There is quite a bit of death in the story which is why it may not be suitable for every 13-year-old, but I also believe that it is dealt with in the best of ways and makes sense within the story. This would be a great book to discuss with teenagers. I can see discussing how they saw John in the beginning of the book compared to how they saw him at the end. I really feel that he was unlucky for the first half of the book and then my perspective changed.

Initially, I felt this story is purely entertaining, but as I thought more about it I see the value of the social elements about friendship, family and even morals. The story encourages one to take a better look at themselves and at life.

I give this 5 stars out of 5 and recommend it for ages 13 to 18 and believe adults will thoroughly enjoy it as well.

Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - See adult review
Juror Recommended Age: 13-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: Book

Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - After he is fired from the Anti-Villain League for failing to take down the latest bad guy to threaten humanity, Gru finds himself in the midst of a major identity crisis. But when a mysterious stranger shows up to inform Gru that he has a long-lost twin brother-a brother who desperately wishes to follow in his twin's despicable footsteps-one former super-villain will rediscover just how good it feels to be bad.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I have reviewed quite a few films for KIDS FIRST! and many of them have been memorable, fantastic additions to my media life. Despicable Me 3 has officially taken the spot as my favorite KIDS FIRST! film to review and is one of my favorite five animated movies of all time. I really liked the first two Despicable Me films, which led me to believe I would enjoy this one as well. This movie is fantastic. It is lovely to see a story with a bit of a serious side to it and one that I can relate to so thoroughly. In this film, you get your standard goofy storyline with the Minions and villains, but you also get a more in depth look at Gru's family life and how it has evolved. In the last film, Gru married Lucy and, in this film, you get to see Lucy and the girls figure out the mother/daughter dynamics. It's wonderful and very touching. Being a step-mother myself, watching this film for the first time with my step-children was a great experience. The family feeling is great and the step-parent or adopted-parent bonds seem would really help freshly blended families or give a lovely reminder to not so freshly blended families. The animation s great as always, the music is fun and engaging and the story is beyond wonderful. This film is perfect for children ages 5 to 14. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars. If you haven't seen it, you really should. It opens June 20, 2017 in theaters nationwide. By Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love this movie! It is a funny, fast-paced film about Gru and his family discovering his charming, long-lost twin brother Dru. After Gru and Lucy lose their jobs and the Minions quit, the brothers team up against Balthezar Bratt, the new villain, while Lucy and the girls have some of their own adventures.

My favorite scene is when Gru and Dru attempt to break into Bratts' headquarters. Dru, who isn't used to the idea of a heist, continuously messes up the plan. Its laugh-out-loud funny! The long lost twin brothers are two of my favorite characters, brilliantly voiced and acted by Steve Carrell. I also love Gru's wife Lucy voiced by Kristen Wiig.

Now of course we can't forget Balthazr Bratt (Trey Parker), an old school villain determined to get revenge on Hollywood for canceling his hit TV show in the 80s. Gubble gum that blows up on impact is his choice of weapon. His purple pantsuit inspires him to break into an 80s song. You can imagine that he is a fun character and, I think he is very good addition to this movie. You want him defeated, but you enjoy thinking what he might do next. Although the good guy/bad guy element of the movie is slightly predictable, I would definitely go see it again.

The music in this film is all around great. The villain Bratt is stuck in the 80s and constantly breaks out in dance whenever there is 80s music. I know adults will remember those songs. In addition there are Pharrell Williams' awesome new songs. Illumination Studios nails it again with so much creativity, great animation and new characters to join the familiar ones. The Minions are adorable as always!

I give this film 5 out of 5 shining stars and I recommend it for ages 5 to 18 because of its laugh-out-loud, but not crude humor, creative plot twists, fabulous acting and great music. Though it's the 3rd sequel, it doesn't matter if you didn't see the previous films. It is great on its own!! Check it out when it opens June 20, 2017 in theaters nationwide.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I love this movie. It is an action-packed film that is entertaining from beginning to end! It is an excellent sequel to the two other Despicable Me films and the Minions. But to love this film, seeing the others is not required. It is great all on its own!

Despicable Me 3 picks up where Despicable Me 2 left off and takes us on an exciting new adventure. After Gru and Lucy get fired by the new boss of AVL (Anti-Villain League), the Minions want Gru to return to a life of crime. Instead, they are taken on an adventure to find Gru's long-lost twin brother Dru! Gru, Lucy and their three kids fly to his brother's house in Freedonia. As soon as they walk in, they notice Dru has an extravagant lifestyle, very different to the one they're used to, with lots of awesome vehicles.

My favorite scene is when the Minions are running from the police and end up on a television show called Sing. There are three judges waiting for them to start and, at first the Minions don't want to sing. When one Minion gets pushed to the front, he starts singing and all the others join in. Shortly after, the crowd and the judges love them. It is hilarious!

Although, I love the Minions, my favorite character is Lucy, performed brilliantly by Kristen Wiig. She is such a fun, high-spirited person and she is always the one to come in and save the day. I also think Balthazar Bratt, the new villain, is a great addition to the film. He starts out as a child actor in Hollywood until he is kicked off the show as a teen. He then thinks and acts as if he is the evil character he played on TV and starts destroying and stealing things. Gru and Dru decide to take down Balthazar Bratt and carry on their family tradition as special agents.

The animation in this film is fantastic. It allows for creativity that live action films just can't achieve. Balthazar Bratt's bubble gum guns are a great example of that, especially when they blow up Hollywood. I love how the hundreds of Minions change their expressions, their color or their clothes, especially when they change from their jail jumpsuits to their overalls.

The music is awesome. It's a fun mix of Pharrell Williams' new songs and 80s music that adults are sure to remember! this movie is very family friendly. I recommend it for ages 5 to 12. Many teens and adults will enjoy it as well. I give it 5 out of 5 stars. It's a super fun summer film that opens nationwide in theaters June 30, 2017. Go check it out. I hope you enjoy the movie.

By Madeline R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 4-18
Description - Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician with her own plan to win, inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet, and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn't through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing's biggest stage!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth reviews
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Cars 3 is a great new chapter in the Cars series. While it doesn't soar to the heights of other Pixar films, it still is the best Cars film yet.

Cars 3 sees Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) undergo a series of losses and then a near fatal crash. His fellow racers are dropping out and being replaced by new, high tech cars like his rival Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer). McQueen realizes during his recovery that the game has changed and he's not the sharp rookie he used to be. He knows he needs to train harder than he ever has to keep doing what he loves. With the help of trainer Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo), McQueen plans to beat Storm at an upcoming race in Florida to start off the season. This is his last chance to prove his worth to his fans and his new corporate sponsor (Nathan Fillion) and McQueen is not going down without a fight.

My favorite character in Cars 3 is Cruz Ramirez. The reveal of a new car being added to Lightning's crew is exciting. This character's glowing positivity is a nice contrast to McQueen's snarky pessimism. Cristela Alonzo brings a lot of enthusiasm, but also plays the deeper sides of this character very well too and engages you in the evolution of Cruz Ramirez throughout the movie.

The animation in Cars 3 is great. No other film succeeds in making everyday objects feel truly human as well as this franchise does. This gives it a sense of realism and puts me more in tune with characters' emotions and makes me care more about them in the process. The backgrounds in this film are gorgeous. They're detailed, picturesque and really reflect the quality of Pixar's animation. The total effect makes me envy the characters and wish I could visit them in their rich, colorful world.

Preceding Cars 3 is the short film Lou about a creature made out of objects from a school lost-and-found bin. It's an interesting concept and carries an important message. It's one of my favorite Pixar shorts to date. I recommend Cars 3 for ages 5 to 12. The scene where Lightning McQueen crashes is quite intense and could scare younger children. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars. Cars 3 opens in theaters June 16 so be sure to go check it out.

By Benjamin P, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11

This film is really unique and well made! I really enjoyed watching it. The storyline is well thought out and original. I also love the animation which is very detailed. I especially love the facial expressions of the cars which show a lot of emotions.

Cars 3 is about the famous racer, Lightning Macqueen. He is usually the winner of every race until a rookie racer comes along. The rookie, Jackson Storm, is younger, sleeker and faster than Lightning Macqueen and his "old-school" friends. Eventually, his friends retire, leaving room for more rookies to join the races. And Lightning McQueen goes on an adventure to figure out if his racing days must come to an end.

Owen Wilson, the voice of Lightning McQueen, perfectly performs Lightning McQueen's rage scenes. He makes McQueen sound desperate, frustrated and on the edge of breaking at times, but can make him also sound determined and hopeful. Armie Hammer, the voice of Jackson Storm, voices Jackson as an arrogant character. The voice fits very well because Storm always makes fun of Lightning McQueen.

The animation of this film is very pleasing to look at, is 3D, and even though they are cars, you can see their facial expressions. Their voices and facial expressions indirectly show their emotions which was really pleasing to watch.

My favorite part is when Lightning McQueen goes back to visit the hometown of his late crew chief and former racer Doc Hudson. McQueen sees all of the letters that Hudson sent back home about him. McQueen starts feeling emotional and begins to really miss Hudson. I really like this scene because it warmed my heart to see McQueen realize that he made Hudson happy till his last days. Lightning McQueen was like a son to Doc Hudson.

The message of this film is about persevering and empowering women. Cruz Ramirez, a female car with the dream of being a racer, is told by everyone that she can't be a racer, even though she works extremely hard every day to become one. Lightning McQueen gives her a chance to become a racer and she takes it no matter what anyone says.

Cars 3 is a great movie and I give it 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 6 to 14. This film is very positive and has a different storyline. It's awesome for car lovers. Check it out when it opens in theaters June 16, 2017.

By Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

As a teenage girl who did not see the first two Cars films, I had serious doubts about this movie. Imagine my surprise when I found myself enjoying Cars 3 from beginning to end. Although this movie is clearly an action movie, it is also hilarious! I am a huge Larry the Cable Guy fan and, as Mater the Tow Truck, he provides plenty of comic relief. I also love how loyal and heartwarming Mater is as a friend to the protagonist, Lightning McQueen. Of course, his is not the only remarkable performance. Owen Wilson, as Lightning McQueen, is a very effective leading man. His performance is pure genius.

The movie is intense. A new race car character, Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer) is introduced as competition to our hero, Lightning McQueen. Unfortunately, Storm steals Lightning's thunder (sorry, I couldn't resist). Viewers will find the many racing sequences extremely exciting. I actually jumped during the nighttime race through the forest with no headlights. Parents should know that there is another scene that might be disturbing to younger viewers which occurs during the Crazy 8's demolition derby race at Thunder Hollow. Since all the characters are cars, the destruction could be considered quite violent.

There are three messages in this film. The first is a message of girl power when a plot twist involving Lightning's female trainer provides a completely unexpected result. Another message is to value and honor the old-timers who succeeded before you and paved the way for your success. We see this when an older lady racer talks about the days when she was not allowed to have a number, so she stole one. The third message, which provides yet another surprise, is that those who support actual heroes are indeed, heroes themselves.

What really stands out for me throughout this film is the music and the animation. I love how the music, usually heavy-metal guitars, suits each race so perfectly. The images are of two types - absolutely breathtaking scenery, such as the trip to the Rusteeze Racing Center, and the appealing, animated car characters. It is also very interesting that Lightning McQueen keeps changing his look throughout the film.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars. It very effectively tells a story about doing what you love to do regardless of public opinion. I recommend this film for girls and boys ages 7 to 18. Cars 3 races into theaters on Friday, June 16, 2017 so go check it out. You will absolutely enjoy the ride.

By Lucia F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 18
Juror Recommended Age: 4-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 13-18
Description - No longer your average boy-next-door, Holden Layfield weaves audiences through his harrowing tale in this film set in the early 1990s. After succumbing to a secret battle with mental illness, Holden evolves from a beloved, small town Georgia football player to a lost, self-medicating prophet.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This exceptional film brought out all of my emotions, which is why it is one of my new favorites. I don't remember the last time I laughed and cried within minutes of each other. I'm glad I was able to express my emotions, because that is what makes me relate to a film. This film helped y heart grow bigger and make me more empathetic towards others.

Based on a true story, Holden On is about a 17-year-old boy named Holden Layfield, who lives in a small town in Georgia and is a star athlete. Playing football like a professional, Layfield receives multiple college scholarships and is ready to begin a new chapter in his life. But, he has a big secret: he is battling a mental illness. Over a two year period, Layfield tries to keep his illness to himself and transforms from a fantastic football player to a prophet who believes he can save the world.

Matthew Fahey portrays Holden in a remarkable fashion. He acts very humble, which illustrates how kind-hearted Holden truly is. However, because of his humility, it is difficult for Holden's family to decipher his thoughts. Fahey makes you believe that Holden is completely fine and, because he isn't, it makes the plot even more intriguing. Steve Ellis' portrayal of Zinte, Holden's best friend, is humorous. Zinte truly cares about Holden and it is evident through their five year friendship. Ellis characterizes Zinte as comical, joking around with him to cheer him up. But, he is unaware of Holden's issue. These lead actors left me on the edge of my seat for the entire film.

I love the music in this film because which is from the 80s, opening with "It's the End of the World" by R.E.M. The film is set in the 90s, but the music is from an older era and includes bands such as Suzie Rose and Tommy McCarthy. My favorite parts of the film are when Holden is in a situation and the camera shifts towards his point of view. For example, Holden tackles another team player on the football field before the game begins. The camera cuts to Holden's thoughts, displaying a visual of what is going on in his brain. I enjoyed how Holden narrates his thoughts when this occurs, because I could empathize more with him.

The message of this film is that you are not alone, even if you're battling mental illness. Talk to your friends, family or a professional about your feelings, because there is someone who is always willing to help. Mental illness is common and not many people are aware of the help available to those who are suffering. That a movie has been created to address the issue touches my heart.

Be forewarned that Holden resorts to drugs to cope with his illness yet, this film has such an impactful message that I wish every kid could see it. We can all help those who are dealing with mental illness. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 16 to 18 as well as adults. Go to to read about the nationwide movement supporting treating mental illness through artistic expression. Also, catch this film when it comes out June 7, 2017. It is one that you don't want to miss.

By Samantha Marcus, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURES, AGES 12-18
Description - Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, when a pilot crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers and her true destiny.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth reviews
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - When this movie was announced, I was super excited, but at the same time, skeptical. Because all the recent DC Movies didn't live up to all the hype. However, once I sat down in the theatre, all comfortable with my popcorn and icee and watched the film, I can say that it is absolutely amazing! It definitely lives up to its potential. Once the movie was over, I started clapping and, after I left the theatre, I realized my hands were red because I had clapped so hard.

The story of this film starts on Themyscira, an island cloaked from society and home to the Amazons. Diana, Princess of the Amazons, finds an allied spy who washed on shore named Steve Trevor. He tells her about the horrors of World War l and she decides to join him to stop The War to End All Wars.

Gal Gadot plays Wonder Woman and, oh my gosh, she is awesome! She is courageous and fierce, but also intelligent and empathetic. She is the perfect role model for every little girl. She is the iconic Wonder Woman! But in all seriousness, all the actors are awesome and really likeable. One particular character that didn't get enough screen time was Steve's secretary, Eta Candy, played by Lucy Davis. She is really funny and has some great one liners. She really deserved more time to shine.

The special effects and fight scenes are also extraordinary. During most of the action scenes, I found myself leaning forward, wide-eyed and gripping my seat. Unlike Batman V Superman or Suicide Squad, I could actually SEE what was happening! To me, the best scene in the movie is when Diana, Steve and his crew lead an invasion of a German controlled town and liberate it. The action is so exciting and, when the Wonder Woman theme starts playing, I literally started smiling until the scene was over.

Surprisingly, this film is also extremely hilarious. I was laughing for a good chunk of time. The humor mainly comes from Diana's lack of knowledge of our civilization. There's a really funny scene where Eta tries to give Diana a normal outfit and she kicks and rips the skirt.

I definitely give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18. This movie opens in theatres on June 2, 2017. I could say I recommend this movie for comic book fans, but honestly everyone should see this movie. Wonder Woman is an iconic role model and Gal Gadot definitely lives up to the part. Director Patty Jenkins lassoed this hit film and I love that a woman directed it - Girl Power! That's the truth.

By Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

Wonder Woman is a defining example of a great superhero movie. While the movie struggles in its final act, it still delivers compelling action, great directing and good performances.

Gal Gadot plays Diana, the princess of an island called Themiscyra, inhabited by Amazon warriors. As a child, she is taught to be a fierce warrior. One day, a plane crashes just offshore. The pilot is a spy named Steve Trevor, who is trying to escape the German army after stealing their secrets. Diana saves him from the wreckage. Soon, German troops besiege the island in search of Steve. After a clash between the Amazons and the troops, Steve warns Diana and her people of a war in the outside world. Her strong urge to help others leads her to follow Steve to the frontlines to end the conflict. As her journey continues, she must embrace her destiny and become the hero she was born to be.

Gal Gadot is very good as Diana a.k.a. Wonder Woman. There is something very generous and kind about her character. Gadot is convincing as a strong female heroine who cares deeply about the lives of others and is willing to risk her own to save them. This character make a great role model, someone ready to spring into action to fight for things such as justice and freedom, but also some who cares about other people. Gadot studied a lot of martial arts and other training to prepare for this film and it certainly pays off in the thrilling action scenes. She carries the movie very well and I hope to see her in more DC films.

Diana's fish-out-of-water dynamic is explored to great effect for some good laughs. She has little knowledge of life beyond the island. Her reactions and conversations in the outside world are very funny. She also has enjoyable banter with Steve Trevor.

Director Patty Jenkins had a very clear vision of what she wanted the film to look like and it translates to the screen very well. She shot it on a very epic scale and used techniques like shooting on film instead of digital to get the grainy feel of the World War I era. This makes for a more real cinematic experience.

One of my main criticisms of the film is its third act. The first two thirds are near perfect. The final act almost descends into a dumb, explosion-filled mess, but redeems itself in a way that doesn't ruin the first two acts for me. I recommend Wonder Woman for ages 12 to 18 due to some violence and language and give it . It opens in theaters June 2 so, go check it out.

By Benjamin P, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11

Wonder Woman caught me off guard. I thought it would be a girly movie about her trying to go against gender issues. But that is not the case. It fits right in with the other superhero movies. This movie starts off with the characteristic young kid that has a burning fire within them. She grows up and becomes strong. Then she goes out into the real world. It, along with the other origin story films, is a great example of a really good movie.

Wonder Woman instantly became one of my favorite superhero movies because, when there is action, you can actually follow it. Let me explain. Some movies (James Bond) are really difficult to follow when there is action. Because of constant quick editing and constant changes in shots and angles, it becomes really hard to understand the action or see what you are looking at. That is not the case with this film. However complicated the fight scenes are, you can understand what she does and follow her movements. In order to do this, the movie utilized slow motion. It's not annoying. I kind of liked it, but it happens a lot.

Not only does action dominate the movie, but every second of the movie has a well placed shot. What I'm saying is that the camera angles are amazing throughout and the whole movie looks fantastic. In this way, thankfully, the movie does not follow the usual way of things. There is, let's just say it, a totally boss battle where they could have easily taken a wide angle shot. And they do, but only for a second. And, the rest is fabulous to watch.

Wonder Woman is played by Gal Gadot. Sir Patrick Morgan (David Thewlis), Steve (Chris Pine) and basically all the other actors are amazing. Every character is necessary and the movie would be poorer without any one of them. Not that I didn't hate any of the characters. Of course there are ones that the movie wants me to hate. But they are all well built and quite lively. They seem to fit like gloves to the time and place of when the film takes place. This brings me to the sets. Every set looks like they just barged into real and existing buildings and started filming. This realism is especially challenging since it's set during WW I. The locations and sets make sense and the way the filming is done made me want to visit them. The green screen work is especially amazing because they did not scream "look at me!" Instead, they are just backgrounds and are very believable. So much so that, if I hadn't known these settings exist I would not think anything was fishy about the backgrounds.

My favorite part of the film is the scene when Wonder Woman jumps out of the trenches and single handedly fights the opposing side. My second favorite is when she completely demolishes an entire building. Yeah, she does not kid around.

This movie also explores working with the obvious feminist issues. After all, this is a female superhero! They depict a very strong character, just like all other superheroes, and they are able to add some humor as well. Throughout the movie everyone underestimates and doubts her because she is a girl. Ha! She creams everyone else. Unfortunately, at the very end, the movie pops the great feministic bubble they created by getting sappy and making Wonder Woman say that love is the answer. *POP*

I recommend this movie for ages 7 to 18 and adults will love it too. I say age 7 because, what kid above 5 doesn't see action movies these days? But if you are one of those parents who doesn't let their kids see these types of superhero movies, this one has is rated PG-13. I caught no cursing. There is one sexual statement that will go unnoticed by kids who aren't already knowledgeable about that. I this movie 4.5 out of 5 stars, because the ending is girlish. Everything is great besides that though. It opens nationwide in theaters June 2, 2017 so, go check it out.

By Miles T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - Captain Jack Sparrow finds the winds of ill-fortune blowing even more strongly when deadly ghost pirates led by his old nemesis, the terrifying Captain Salazar, escape from the Devil's Triangle, determined to kill every pirate at sea...including him. Captain Jack's only hope of survival lies in seeking out the legendary Trident of Poseidon, a powerful artifact that bestows upon its possessor total control over the seas.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is the fifth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise and has the most other-worldly visual effects of any recent movie. The CGI is the most mesmerizing piece of treasure throughout the film. Johnny Depp again stars as Jack Sparrow and Geoffrey Rush as Captain Barbossa. It also stars the terrific Javier Bardem as the new villain, Captain Salazar. Brenton Thwaites plays Henry Turner and Kaya Scodelario plays Carina Smyth. Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley have cameos as Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann, respectively. Full disclosure: I am a huge Johnny Depp fan and I have loved the Pirates of the Caribbean movies since I was 5 years old!

At the beginning of the film, Captain Jack Sparrow is presumed dead. He resurfaces in a most humorous way. Captain Salazar is Jack Sparrow's oldest nemesis. He takes revenge on Sparrow by unleashing the vicious ghost pirates of Devil's Triangle. The ghost pirates are hell-bent on killing Sparrow and destroy multiple pirate ships in the process. The only way to break the curse is to find and destroy the Trident of Poseidon. Along the way, we learn the background of Will Turner's son, Henry Turner. He's looking for Sparrow and also trying to find the Trident in order to save his father who is trapped in Davy Jones Locker. Carina Smyth is a young astronomer who is also searching for the Trident. What ensues is a humorous, action packed adventure on the high seas.

The special effects and CGI are astoundingly lifelike. The most stunning visual effects in the film are the CGI animated ghost sharks, which are sent to hunt down Jack Sparrow. The movements of the ghost pirates and sharks are hyper-realistic. Out of all the Pirates of The Caribbean films, this one utilizes the most mythological elements. Johnny Depp again aces his performance as Captain Jack Sparrow. His interpretation of Jack Sparrow is one of the most entertaining and memorable characters in recent film history. The inimitable Geoffrey Rush is again terrific as Captain Barbossa and Javier Bardem, an acclaimed actor from art house and independent films, is riveting as the vicious Captain Salazar.

One flaw of the film is how Keira Knightley suddenly appears for one minute during the movie. It's the one false note because it seems gratuitous. However, it doesn't distract from the impact and excitement of the film. Compared to other movie sequels, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales flows surprisingly well and moves along at an exciting pace. The film is appropriate for 10 to18 year olds. I give Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales 5 out of 5 stars. It opens May 26, 2017 in theaters nationwide so be sure to check it out.

By Clayton Pickard, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is the fifth movie in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise which impressed me due to its plot. The special effects are full of wonder and the fabulous direction adds charm.

The movie is about Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp), who is in pursuit by Captain Salazar (Javiar Bardem). He wants payback for when Jack left Captain Salazar to rot in the Devil's Triangle, where he became cursed. Jack's way out is to find the Trident of Poseidon. Meanwhile, Henry Turner (Brenton Thwaites) also wants the Trident to remove the curse on his father, Will Turner (Orlando Bloom). Henry follows Jack's crew to the Trident. The crew is filled out by Carina Smyth (Kaya Scodelario). On top of that, Captain Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) is forced by Salazar to track Jack.

Johnny Depp is impressive in his charisma as Jack Sparrow, a funny yet intelligent pirate and he is always my favorite. Javiar Bardem as Captain Salazar excellently presents his pain from his cursed life. Brenton Thwaites as Henry Turner represents determination in his quest to save his father. Orlando Bloom as Will Turner appears as a protective father. Kaya Scodelario as Carina Smyth is feisty in the struggles faced by women who believed in science. Geoffrey Rush as Captain Barbossa nicely displays his efforts to rescue his crew from Captain Salazar's cursed army.

The directors (Joachim Ronnining, Espen Sandberg) stage the movie in exceptionally scenic locales. The close up shots impressed me, especially the detail of the cursed sharks around the island. My favorite scene is when Jack is trialed to execution. Inventive ways of dark comedy make the scene quite funny. My only problem with the film is that the story only begins to unfold after the first hour. Until then, it is mostly exposition to preface the plot. However, the characters keep the movie entertaining.

The movie's message is that "where there is determination, there is a way." Despite being told not to search for the Trident by his father, Henry pursues this adventurous expedition in spite of lots of complications. He also teams up with Carina and Jack Sparrow and the crew's teamwork pays off. I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18 because of its intense action. The movie releases in theaters on May 26th, so check it out if you want a Caribbean treat.

By Arjun Nair, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - Alisa Knows What to Do! is based on the extremely popular Russian science-fiction novels by famous Russian author Kir Bulychiov about a young girl from the future, Alisa Salazar. 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, both on the planet and in space.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - What's most appealing about this title is that it's an animated science-fiction series that shows life at the end of the 21st century. During this time, humans learn to co-exist with different life forms. Each episode takes children on a journey of exploration as a group of teens fight for justice while also dealing with global problems on their planet as well as in space. I believe a child between the ages of 5 to12 would enjoy this series because it's entertaining, has futuristic technology, great visuals and graphics and includes vocabulary and concepts that are suitable for this age group. In fact, each episode flows well, the sound is clear and it has a clear beginning, middle and end. Furthermore, season one of Alisa Knows What to Do! is a 3-disc set that runs approximately 630 minutes. I highly recommend this series and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Geanice G., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - What I find appealing is that Alisa is everyone's boss and, as the title says, she obviously knows what to do. I like the animation because the special effects are very cool. Young children will enjoy this because it is filled with adventure and action. One part I don't care for is how strict the teacher is. I wish he was nicer to the young teens. At first I was bothered by the audio which is not in sync with the mouth movements and then I realized that the original language is Russian and this version is dubbed in English.

This DVD is a compilation of episodes from the TV show. Based on a popular Russian science fiction novel by Kir Bulychiov, the show follows a group of teens in the future who learn to solve problems with help from their leader Alisa. Alisa and her friends face many difficulties and they have to figure out how to fight the villains that are trying to defeat them. They are also concerned about the environment and how the earth will survive. They live near the end of the 21st century, so there is lots of advanced technology included in this show.

There are two messages in this show - every problem has a solution and teamwork is the key. I love that the person who usually comes up with the right answer is a girl. I also love how everyone helps each other out in complicated situations.

What really stands in this show is that each episode is self-contained. It has a beginning, middle and end. The animation and audio quality are also amazing. It took me a while to realize that this show takes place at the end of the 21st Century. Most episodes start out showing the kids at school doing class work or something funny. Then someone tells Alisa about a problem and she usually finds the situation. Her friends are her sidekicks so they help her when she needs them. Alisa and her friends are very concerned about the earth, the environment and how to protect it. They are constantly trying to save the universe. Everyone will want to root for Alisa and her friends!

I recommend this show to ages 5 to 10 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. I believe children will enjoy the action, adventure and problem-solving. It is fun and also educational. It is available June 13, 2019 on DVD so, go check it out.

By Lucia F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18

There are not many animated kid shows that can teach important life lessons, entertain and spark the viewer's imagination. Alisa Knows What to Do: Season One accomplishes all of this and more. Even though it is meant for kids, this animated series is perfect for the entire family.

The show has a core of a futuristic adventure with many different elements for viewers to enjoy. Throughout the episodes, viewers will find plenty of comedy that makes everyone laugh. It also includes quite a few of child-friendly action sequences and even some slight young romance between the characters.

Even though each episode has a different plot, the series follows the story of five teenagers living in the year 2090, where there are aliens, robots, spaceships and many advanced pieces of technology. Alisa is always there to save the day with her skills and quick wit to stop evil monsters and evil scientists, rescue her friends and preserve endangered inter-galactical animals.

Overall, this DVD offers a very entertaining collection of episodes with unique stories that always have surprise endings. I also love the interesting perspective of the future. It feels possible but still makes you dream about endless possibilities. The animation itself is a quite different style than what is generally seen on TV, due to being produced in Moscow. One small issue that is very apparent throughout the show is the dubbing. Due to being converted from Russian to English, there are many times when the characters' lips do not match the audio perfectly. The problem isn't too noticeable most of the time, but there are scenes where it is distracting.

My favorite episode is Games without Rules. In this episode, a new museum about the history of the galaxy opens on Pluto. The top scientists, including Alisa's father, attend the opening. Disaster strikes when an eclipse by a Pluto moon causes the release of "Zye" waves, which turns people into statues. Luckily Alisa and her friend find out about this and destroy a crystal to rescue the people. The animation of the museum and the dwarf planet is beautiful and the plot has unexpected and entertaining twists.

The show is meant for kids, but there are some darker aspects of some episodes. For that reason, I recommend it for ages 10 to 18. I give the DVD 4.5 out of 5 stars because there of the small issue with the dubbing, but other than that, the show is entertaining, has strong messages and is perfect for the whole family.

By Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 15
Runtime: 630 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 8.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 5-11
Description - Unknown to the world, Thomas Edison built a secret lab where he invented a virtual version of himself and a steampunk robot named Von Bolt. Years later, Angie, a twelve-year-old science prodigy, discovers the lab. While visiting one of Kent's relatives, the kids come up with a great idea for attracting more tourists to his restaurant - the only catch is that it also attracts a very big shark with very big teeth! What will the Secret Lab Kids do? Guided by fun-loving Edison, Angie and friends will show just how fun science can be
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I've been lucky enough to review two of the Thomas Edison's Secret Lab DVDs and I just love them. As a kid I always loved science class, but I know that not everyone did. There were lessons that appealed to me less than others and I was lucky enough to have ?shows such as Bill Nye the Science Guy and The Magic School Bus? to inspire me?. ?This collection is called "?It's Always Sharkest" because it features an episode regarding a shark?'?s sense of smell. Thinking about subjects ?such as?? DNA and ?radioactive ?decay? doesn't ?seem to be very appealing to younger ?kids, but these episodes change that. It gives a very hands on, kid friendly approach to not just learning about these subjects, but enjoying the adventure along the way. One of my favorite things about this program is meeting the creators take on other scientists like Darwin and Watson. The animation is phenomenal and the lessons learned are even better. I? recommend this to kids ages ?5? to 12, but ?make no mistake, ?I greatly enjoyed learning new things and relearning things I had long forgotten. If I could ?rate this higher than 5 stars I would, but since I can't?, I give it 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: It's Always Sharkest because it is an educational show, has very unique features and really good animation.

This show is about a group of kids and with a few robots that do scientific research. They do it in a secret lab that Thomas Edison left behind with a digital version of himself. They do research about a shark's sense of smell. When the group gets into situations where they mess up on a project or experiment, they always find a way to fix it. And, they have adventures with famous scientists such as Charles Darwin.

The show has cool features that I've rarely seen on a TV show. At the end of every episode, they have a music video recapping what they learned in that episode. I've only seen this once before on Bill Nye's old TV series. The only thing different between Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: It's Always Sharkest and Bill Nye's music video is that Bill Nye's was a parody of popular songs while the songs on this show are all original songs.

The animation reminds me somewhat of the TV show The Fairly Odd Parents. Both have similar animation styles. They both look sort of like paper cutouts. Furthermore, I like how the robot's actions are animated. In the first episode, one of the robots is almost eaten by a shark so he spins out of control to try to get away from the shark's mouth. I thought that was hilarious, seeing him spin out of control.

The message of the show is to find ways to fix problems and it encourages kids to appreciate and learn more science. In the first episode, the group tries to make a slide but fails because there was too much friction. The whole series is based around science and boosts kids' interest in science. The program shows how science can be fun. I rate this show 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 6 to 9. It is available now on DVD so, go check it out.

By Carla Paz, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 12-18
Description - Behind every great detective is a backstory. MASTERPIECE dials back the clock to spotlight the influences that turned 22-year-old rookie policewoman Jane Tennison into the savvy, single-minded crime fighter beloved by Prime Suspect viewers over the course of seven seasons. Starring Stefanie Martini (Doctor Thorne) as the rookie WPC (Woman Police Constable) Jane Tennison - the iconic role immortalized by Helen Mirren. A prequel to one of the most innovative crime series in television history, the program also stars Sam Reid (The Astronaut Wives Club) as Jane's mentor, DCI Len Bradfield; Blake Harrison (Houdini and Doyle) as Bradfield's volatile sergeant, DS Spencer Gibbs; Jessica Gunning (Law & Order UK) as Jane's female colleague and friend, WPC Kath Morgan; and Alun Armstrong (Little Dorrit, Bleak House) as crime family kingpin Clifford Bentley.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This PBS Masterpiece prequel to the series Prime Suspect, which starred Helen Mirren as Detective Jane Tennison, turns the clock back to give viewers a look at Tennison's start in the British police force. In 1973 London, the young Tennison (Stefanie Martini), assists in a murder case, enduring personal tragedy when a particularly close associate is killed. The backstory, along with Martini's performance, brings to life a credible young Tennison struggling to find her footing. Scenes of Tennison's home life round out her character and the police station setting provides an engrossing glimpse back at a less cynical time. The DVD set includes brief shorts about the original show and 1970s London. Being a crime show, there are some grizzly visuals and crime details. I recommended it for ages 14 to 18. As the plot is a bit stretched, I give this mini-series 3 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Michael F., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - See adult review
Runtime: 360 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 14-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 39.99 Media: DVD

Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12 - 18
Description - Henry Louis Gates, Jr. takes a look at the history of Africa, from the birth of humankind to the dawn of the 20th century. This is a journey through two hundred thousand years of history, from the origins, on the African continent, of art, writing, and civilization itself, through the millennia in which Africa and Africans shaped not only their own rich civilizations, but also the wider world.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - In this six part series made for PBS, Harvard University Professor Henry Gates, Jr. provides an in-depth look at many of the major events that define African civilization, beginning with humankind's origins in Africa and the subsequent development of culture, religion, and society on the continent. Focusing on debunking myths, the hour-long episodes delve into the topics of the origins of mankind; the spread of Christianity and Islam; the emergence of art, culture and writing; the thriving coastline cities during the Middle Ages; contact between Africa and Europeans; and the tumultuous 19th Century with the expansion of the slave trade and gold, ivory and diamond trading. Special emphasis is placed on art and architecture, shining a welcome light on aspects of African culture that young people may not be aware of. As usual for PBS, the production is excellent, although one might wish for more for detail on daily life and many topics are barely touched upon. Overall, Prof. Gates makes for an engaging host and the detail covered is impressive and enlightening. The program is suitable for all children ages 12 to 18. The DVDs include chapter headings but no special features. Reviewed by Michael F., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This is an educational and interesting way to learn about the history of Africa. It is also told from an African perspective, which I really enjoyed and found most enlightening. You learn about its history, starting from the birth of humankind to the dawn of the 20th century. I wish that it actually went into a little more of modern times but maybe that could be the next six-part series. The visuals and interviews make this very interesting to watch and there are also some really great maps. I enjoyed the narration and the way the entire DVD flows from beginning to end. I also enjoyed the different scenes that bring this DVD to life! I recommend it for ages 11 to 18 and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Denise B..
Runtime: 360 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 20.79 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - It's been six years since that summer adventure when Taichi and the rest of the DigiDestined crossed over to the Digital World and nearly three years since the final battle between Hikari's group and BelialVamdemon. And, at some point, while the peaceful days went by, the gate to the Digital World mysteriously closed. But when a Kuwagamon suddenly appears in Odaiba, its rampage leaves the town in ruins, and the people there in turmoil. Taichi chases after it, in an effort to halt its rampage. But there's nothing he can do against a Kuwagamon. Not by himself. And that's where a new adventure begins.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This story takes place six years after the events of the original Digimon Series. New threats to the real world from the digital world occur and it's up our reunited heroes to save us. It's really neat seeing the Digi-destin (heroes) grown up. They are so different from when they were kids. The animation, despite being digitally animated, is quite nice. The sound track is great and really gives you the feel of the older show. I believe this is suitable for ages 6 to 18, but I really enjoyed it as well. I give this great revamp of a classic 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - While I am not a big fan of Digimon (I prefer Pok�mon), I have to say that the animation in this DVD is really well executed. It is very colorful, vivid and very realistic. After a slow start, the plot picks up and brings fans right back into the Digital World full of adventure and battles.

If you were a fan of the Digimon series in the 1990s and early 2000s, then this is the movie for you. Toei Animation and Shout! Factory have reunited the original characters to produce its first animated feature film. It has been six years since Tai and the rest of the "DigiDestined" crossed over into the Digital World. The gate remains closed but new adventures await.

There is a DVD combo pack option that includes both Japanese and English language versions as well as bonus content. The English dubbing is highly professional. Joshua Seth returns as the voice artist for Tayi Kamiya. He is a well-known voice-over artist, not just for his work on the Digimon series, but multiple other anime and video game projects. My favorite character is Angemon (Dave Mallow). I really enjoy the way he voices this character, making him sound creative and quirky.

Digimon Adventure Tri. - Reunion would not be a good place to start if you are new to Digimon, as it picks up where the series left off many years ago. It is best to have at least some understanding of the back story of the characters and storyline or you will not be able to really grasp what is going on. But the message of working together to achieve a common goal is easy to understand. My favorite scene is when Tai and Angemon stand looking over the cliff. This scene is dramatic and relatable and changes the tone of the film.

This is a dramatic, yet lighthearted film reuniting all of the Digimon characters from the original series. I recommend this film for ages 10 to 16 and give this film 3 out of 5 stars. It is available on DVD, March 16, 2017 so be sure to check it out.

By Tristan Tierce, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, 14 years old

Digimon Adventure Tri.: Reunion is a fun return to the world of Digimon's Digital Monsters with epic battles and powerful Digimon that should definitely appeal to fans of the original series.

Many years have passed since the original show and the characters are now in high school. Tai encounters a strange Digimon that jeopardizes the reputation of the rest of the magical creatures. Tai is reunited with the rest of the Digidestined and they come together with their Digimon to fight against the destructive monsters that Tai encounters. As this threat becomes more hostile, the Digidestined must work together to fight against it.

My favorite part of this film is the climactic final battle. Seeing the Digidestined fight against one common evil is very epic. This scene feels like it has real stakes to it. I honestly was unsure of what would happen next. It is a nice pay-off for what the film has been building up to the whole time. The Digimon really let loose and you finally really get to see the grand scale of their powers onscreen in a rewarding way.

I do not like the ending to this film. It might catch you off guard with an ending that feels abrupt. You could argue that they chose to end it this way because this film has two other sequels, but I think they could have at least added one more scene.

This film is a little confusing. I know little of the Digimon mythos and there is some exposition that I don't understand. However, this series' welcoming nature though makes up for that. Even though I do not know the characters, they interact in a way that made me feel as if I knew them already. I mostly credit the voice cast for this. They have never played these characters before or worked together, but it feels as if they've known each other for a long time and their chemistry feels very much believable.

I give this DVD an age rating of 5 to 14. It's pretty much for all ages and, if you're a fan of Digimon, I highly recommend it. I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars. Fans of Digimon will really enjoy it. You can find it now on DVD so, go check it out.

By Benjamin P, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11
Runtime: 96 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 6-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 21.97 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 5-8
Description - Twilight Sparkle is determined to prove that anyone can learn the magic of friendship. So when a reformed Starlight Glimmer wants a fresh start, Twilight is only too happy to take her under her alicorn wing and lend a helping hoof. And though challenges await Starlight as she learns about friendship, Twilight and the rest of the Mane 6 will do whatever it takes to ensure Starlight succeeds!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - As usual, My Little Pony doesn't disappoint. This particular DVD has 5 episodes, there are two 2-parters and then a standalone episode. Obviously these specific episodes focus heavily on Twilight and Starlight. The animation is fantastic and the voice acting is on point. The songs are very cute and catchy. One episode set focuses on the idea that you can't force someone to be your friend, which I thought to be quite interesting. I have not seen that topic brought up in a kids program before and, it is definitely a topic that should be addressed. The only complaint that I have about this DVD is that it bounces around multiple seasons of the TV series. Pretty much all of the DVDs do and I suppose they need to bounce around to gather enough episodes about a specific situation or character, but it gets confusing sometimes. All in all, it is a pleasure to watch. I recommend this for ages 5 to 13 and it probably appeals to girls more than boys. But, then, there are Bronies. I happily grant it 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - My Little Pony Friendship is Magic: Twilight and Starlight is a very positive show. I love how friendship is always the main theme with these magical ponies. I also love how, in each episode, there is a lesson to learn about friendship and how to apply the skills throughout life. Kids will definitely enjoy watching the Equestria girls and learn more about the journey of friendship.

Twilight Sparkle is determined to prove to everyone that making friends is an easy thing to do and how magical friendship is. A changed Starlight Glimmer visits the land of Equestria, hoping to develop a friendship with any pony. Twilight is ecstatic to help her throughout her journey and is willing to lend a helping hoof. Although Starlight faces various challenges throughout the episodes, Twilight and the Mane 6 will do whatever it takes to make sure that Starlight succeeds in making new friends.

Each episode is purposeful, but my favorite is the third episode when Starlight finally realizes who she is and what she is capable of doing in life. At first, Starlight is scared to return to her old town because she is afraid of what people might think of her and how she may even change back to her old ways. She is then forced to look at herself as a pony when her friends and other civilizations of the world are captured by the naughty changelings. You can obviously tell that Starlight wants to change from her old ways, but is too scared to accept it. I like how, at the end, she learns the true meaning of friendship on her own and that it is okay to change!

The overall message expressed throughout every episode is about dealing with friendship. Twilight continuously tries to show Starlight that it is possible to make friends, even with a bad past. People can be very understanding and tend to give others a chance to explain themselves. That's exactly what Twilight tries to explain to Starlight. Kids will be able to learn from this DVD how to make new friends and how to reconnect with old ones.

I recommend this fun-filled DVD for ages 4 to 6. I also encourage parents and older siblings to watch the episodes with their younger siblings to learn a few things about the magic friendship has to offer. They may even be able to apply some of the skills and lessons they learn from the show. I rate this DVD 5 out of 5 stars due to its vibrant colors, magical storyline, amazing cast, educational lessons and so much more! This lively DVD is available now so, check out. Please enjoy this as much as I did!

By Imani Baptiste-Green, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 15
Runtime: 110 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 13.98 Media: DVD


All content ©Copyright 1991-2018 by Coalition for Quality Children's Media

Database search interactivity by NET MAN
Kid movie news & Free DVDs:
Join KIDS FIRST! on Twitter Join KIDS FIRST! on Pinterest Join KIDS FIRST! on Facebook
Loading Search...