The Family category has 2201 KIDS FIRST! endorsed titles
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KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
FATHER, THE
SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 13-18
Description - A man refuses all assistance from his daughter as he ages. As he tries to make sense of his changing circumstances, he begins to doubt his loved ones, his own mind and even the fabric of his reality.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A beautifully-made and moving film, The Father depicts dementia in its raw, brutal essence and will surely make an imprint on your soul.

The French-British film centers around aging Anthony (Anthony Hopkins), an Englishman who "has his ways," as his daughter Anne (Olivia Colman) says. As Anthony develops dementia and his condition worsens, Anne finds it difficult to balance her life with caring for her father. The film traces how the two of them go about their lives together and how the disease progresses. The Father is told in a jumbled manner because our perspective of the film is as Anthony would see it: All out of order. Anne's husband Paul (Rufus Sewell) and another man who Anthony thinks is her husband, a woman, and several caretakers all appear and disappear throughout the film. Even the settings shift, and you're never really sure where you are. Director Florian Zeller and his crew design both Anne and Anthony's apartments to look relatively similar which enhances that perspective of disorientation.

Anthony Hopkins has always played cerebral roles, so this more emotional one is unique in his repertoire. He sheds tears, flies into fits of rage, and immerses himself in the character of a strong-willed man slowly losing his grip on what's happening. The last scene is especially poignant and hard-hitting; no spoilers, though! Olivia Colman's portrayal of Anne is one that many who have dealt with a relative suffering from a progressive mental illness will identify with. It's incredibly realistic, and, at times, you forget that she's an actress playing a character. Anne herself is layered, especially in how she copes with Anthony's dementia, first keeping her emotions bundled up, escalating to emotional breakdowns, and eventually to some scary fantasies. Colman deals with these feelings beautifully, immersing herself much like Hopkins does. Director Florian Zeller isn't actually a director by profession; he's a playwright, and this film was adapted from his play Le P�re. He's a master storyteller, and you couldn't tell this is his first gig as a director. His attention to detail (especially with sets, something I'm sure he took from his career in playwriting), combined with his personal experiences (his grandmother was diagnosed with dementia when Zeller was 12) make this film an earnest yet unsettling project.

The Father cries out to its viewers to enjoy life while they have their senses and to show compassion toward those who have begun to lose (or have already lost) a clear view of the world. It's a sobering portrait of mental illness and yet an empowering film for those coping with their individual struggles. There is some profanity, slight violence (Paul slaps Anthony), and Anthony and Anne's father-daughter relationship gets a bit abusive at times.

I give The Father 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults; younger kids could watch the film if they feel comfortable with themes like mental illness. The Father releases on-demand on March 12, 2021.

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

The Father is an excellent depiction of the reality for many elderly people. This film offers insight into the minds of those that suffer from dementia and how they think. We see how this illness affects not only the patient, but their loved ones.

The Father follows Anthony (Anthony Hopkins), an elder suffering from dementia. The motion picture shows how his mind plays tricks on him. He forgets names easily and he sees his daughter differently, as in with a different face. He also imagines people are there that do not exist. All the while, his daughter Anne (Olivia Colman) struggles to find her father the perfect caretaker.

This film really is an eye-opener to the reality of dementia. Not only is Anthony forgetful, but his attitude changes rapidly in the blink of an eye. In one scene, he is all happy and jazzy as he converses with a young woman, and then he is angry and demands that he doesn't need a caretaker. He believes that he can outlive his own daughter and even talks about what he would say at her funeral. In another scene, he even forgets his name and calls out for his mother. This film is perfect for the loved ones of dementia patients. The movie offers the perspective, ideas, and confusion the victims go through. It also serves as a guide by showing how Anne deals with her father's outbursts and how her love stands strong to always help him. Not once does she give up on her father, insisting he deserves the best care.

The moral of this film is that love conquers all, even the impossible. With the decline of Anthony's mental health, he always has family by his side. Anne always does what is best for her father, including finding the best caretaker in London. Once Anthony is in a home, his nurse has the patience and love to answer his questions, comfort him and put his needs first. There are warnings that go along with its PG-13 rating. Mild profanity is sprinkled throughout the film, along with realistic depictions of mental illness.

I give The Father 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 17 to 18, plus adults. It premieres on Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu February 26, 2021.

By Heather S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 13-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ARCHIBALDS NEXT BIG THING
NETFLIX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 3-7
Description - Archibald's Next Big Thing is an American animated comedy streaming television series created by Tony Hale for Netflix. The plot revolves around Archibald Strutter, a positive chicken who often goes astray from home, but eventually always finds his way back home. Season 3 debuts on the Peacock Channel.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Archibald's Next Big Thing is a unique animation series filled with adventure and kid-friendly humor.

In this season of Archibald's Next Big Thing, Archibald goes on all kinds of wacky adventures with his siblings, Loy, Finly and Sage. Being a chicken and living in an egg shaped house with neighbors of all different species, Archibald finds himself making multiple mistakes and learning valuable lessons through his experiences. From damaging a doctor's office to body switching and even shrinking himself, you never know what situation Archibald will be in. Now matter what, with the help of his friends and family he is able to solve his problems in unusual ways and also with a happy ending.

Tony Hale's, Archibald's Next Big Thing is the next chapter for Archibald Strutter. Producers Eric Fogel and Tony Hale continue to make Archibald a likable character with a great sense of humor. The talented voice-overs of the lead characters Archibald (Tony Hale), Loy (Chelsea Kane), Finly (Jordan Fisher) and Sage (Adam Fally) make the characters believable and bring life to the series. The music, produced by Matthew Janszen, seamlessly transitions the scenes and creates a silly and fun atmosphere. The art director, Sierra Lewis and visual effects directors, Karla Monterrosa and Jessica Oh, are to be commended for designing an animated series adapted from the book and staying true to the original book. The animated drawings and visual effects easily tell the stories of Archibald's never-ending curiosity while being visually engaging.

This cute series makes it okay to be curious and encourages children to learn from their mistakes. Archibald is far from perfect, but the theme of acceptance and compassion guides him through the process of solving his problems. Being a silly chicken turns out to be a lot of fun.

I rate Archibald's Next Big Thing 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 10. Archibald's Next Big Thing premieres on Peacock February 18, 2021 and can be seen on Netflix as well.

By Calee N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 3-10
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


WE ARE SILVER DAZZLERS (2021)
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
WE ARE SILVER DAZZLERS (2021)
ROBERT SICO Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Documentary about the dance team from Harlan High School in San Antonio, Texas......The Silver Dazzlers! Go on a journey with these amazing young ladies, and watch as they experience an incredible season that included dancing at the AT&T Center, the Alamodome, and of course, dancing for their school. Plus, see how an emotional football season changes the dance team forever, and why being a Silver Dazzler can be life changing. "You think it's just learning how to dance...but it's so much more than that. "Adriana N�jera - Dance Team Director
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - We Are Silver Dazzlers is a documentary about a dance team at Harlan High School in San Antonio, Texas. It showcases the journey associated with being a Silver Dazzler. This documentary also shows the bond that the dance team has and how they overcome the hardships of competitive dance with one another.

This film is appealing because, no matter what age someone is, they have been a part, or will be a part of some team. Whether the team is a group of people at work collaborating towards a common goal, or a sports team, one can relate. A child would enjoy this because they can look up to the girls on the dance team. They can possibly be inspired by their hard work and dedication to their sport. I also think dance is very entertaining to watch, so child may enjoy it for the entertainment aspect.

This documentary flows well. It begins with the stories about how the girls got onto the team, highs and lows they have experienced together, favorite performances and moments together, and then what life might look like after the dance team. I also enjoy the intercutting between video footage of the performances or practices and the interviews. It's a perfect balance between the two. I felt empathy for the girls being interviewed because I remember the feeling of being part of a dance team and then graduating and having to move on. Everyone knows the feeling of having to move onto the next stage of their lives and it can be very hard.

The material and vocabulary are suitable for the intended age group. It is also not word heavy regarding dance terms; even if one does not have a dance background, they can still understand what the girls are discussing. There is a section in which the death of a fellow student is discussed. It does not go into detail regarding the death, but this topic still may be hard for some viewers.

The camera quality is quite good. The dance team's costumes are very ornate. The music is mostly royalty free music, but I did notice some pop songs here and there, which made me wonder if the filmmaker has the license to use them.

This film shows the viewer that being part of something good, such as a hardworking dance team, has positive outcomes for not only the thing they are part of, but for themselves also. Viewers can appreciate the importance of working hard under pressure. To paraphrase a quote from the film: do not take the small things in life for granted, because when you look back on your memories, you will realize how big those moments actually are. Do not be sad it's over; be happy it happened.

I give We are Silver Dazzlers 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Reviewed by Tor F., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - We Are Sliver Dazzlers, by Robert Sico, is a tremendously encouraging documentary that is very exceptional.

This documentary is about a dance team that consists of a group of young girls from a high school in San Antonio, Texas, that share the same passion under the amazing leadership of Adriana Najer, who teaches them the meaning of dedication which makes them become great stewards.

This film explores the true meaning of friendship and family. It follows a realistic journey of today's times and a first time experience for a lot of things; listening to the individual testimonies of the girls is so heartwarming. The audience gets an upfront, behind the scenes look at what it takes to be part of a phenomenal dance team. This film is a tear-jerker and you might catch yourself grabbing a tissue to wipe your tears. The way Robert Sico captures the positive, happy and sad moments is really superb; capturing real life stories and keeping it relevant to today's youth is very brightly done. This film is so modern, from the background music to the uniforms. The way the director captures the girls' stories is dazzling.

The message of this film is you don't have to be biologically related to be a family. And we see how behind a great leader is a great "family."

We Are Silver Dazzlers is a sentimental and beautiful documentary. I recommend it for ages 13 to 18 and give it 5 out of 5 stars.

By Deena H., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I love watching the bond among the members of this high school dance team in the documentary We Are Silver Dazzlers! The combination of candid interviews from the team members with footage of the team's dazzling dance numbers creates an emotional journey as they reflect on past dance seasons at Harlan High School. This documentary highlights the thoughtful intentions and dedication the Silver Dazzlers put into their dances and I am in awe of the loving support they have for other members of their high school community.

The documentary catalogs a full season with the Silver Dazzlers dance team as they choreograph, practice and perform routines at school sporting events, pep rallies, and destinations like the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Alternating between dancers in their sophomore, junior and senior year and Coach Adriana N�jera, the team talks through the significance of their bejeweled costumes, behind the scenes of important performances, and their individual journeys to become join the treasured team. Additionally, as members of the Silver Dazzlers in the team's first year, the graduating seniors discuss the legacy they have built through the dance team and the values they hope to pass on to the next generation of Silver Dazzlers.

Although the documentary is a bit long at 90 minutes, it is neatly organized into sections like "Pep Rallies" and "A Football Season to Remember." I love the choice to utilize vlog footage from the dancers in the documentary. In contrast to the dances, the vlog perspective pulls the audience closer to the dancers and provides a unique look at what the Silver Dazzlers do behind the scenes of their performances. The dancers' signature white hat and cowboy boots are stunning when they perform on the football field, but I also love the creativity of their other costumes, like the ripped t-shirts in their Halloween performance and bright red sequined coats in a dance from their first season. The film features many emotional moments from the dancers, with a lyrical dance from football season standing out among the rest as it was dedicated to the loss of a fellow student. The dancers are extremely eloquent when talking about their fellow students and impactful in relaying the drive and disappointment the football team felt when losing a big game that year. I also like the music choices in this film. For example, when a dancer becomes emotional during an interview "Human" by Christina Perri slowly crescendos, mimicking and highlighting the girl's raw emotions.

We Are Silver Dazzlers portrays the perseverance of a closely knit team, and champions the importance of supportive relationships within a team. This documentary also promotes a strong work ethic and dedication.

I give We Are Silver Dazzlers 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18 and adults will enjoy it as well.

Reviewed by Bella F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

We Are Silver Dazzlers is very entertaining and inspiring. The down to earth story and really connects to the audience on an emotional and humble level.

This documentary follows a group of dancers and their journey throughout their high school years. Adriana Najera, the dance teacher at Harlan High School, teaches a group of 23 girls dances they perform at events such as pep rallies, football games, competitions and more. Throughout the years, these girls form a sisterhood and become amazing leaders and friends.

All of the girls that are interviewed are so kind-hearted, humble and passionate. Throughout the film, they all show their passion for dance and performing. Through hard work, dedication and teamwork, they celebrate their accomplishments together. The way the dancers talk about each other shows that they truly have a great bond. They act as if they are just one big family and connect to the audience through their stories and emotions. We watch the team experience hills and valleys and, in the end, it is all worth it because they all get to do what they love to do. Throughout film their outstanding costumes shine, from the original ones used at football games and pep rallies, to the sparkly and shiny ones used at conventions and competitions, they consistently wear dazzling uniforms.

The message of this film is that a successful team takes friendship, hard work and determination.

I give We Are Silver Dazzlers 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 12 to 18.

By Taia P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

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


OWN THE ROOM
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
OWN THE ROOM
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS ENTERTAINMENT - LA Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 11=18
Description - "Own the Room" chronicles five students from disparate corners of the planet as they take their budding business ventures to Macau, China, to compete in the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards. Santosh is from a small farming town in Nepal; Alondra works the register at her family's bakery in Puerto Rico; Henry is a programming wiz from Nairobi; Jason is a marketing machine from Greece; and Daniela, an immigrant fleeing the crisis in Venezuela, is taking on the chemical industry from her lab at NYU. In the uplifting film, each of the business hopefuls has overcome immense obstacles in pursuing their dreams, from hurricanes to poverty to civil unrest. As they represent their countries as the top student entrepreneurs, the high-stakes global finals are their opportunity to win worldwide attention and the coveted $100,000 grand prize to make their life-changing business ideas a reality and transform the world.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Own the Room is a new feature documentary from National Geographic Documentary Films directed by Cristina Costantini and Darren Foster. This directing duo delivers an uplifting movie that has us digging into our "emotional toolbox" as we follow the heartfelt journeys of young entrepreneurs bringing change for future generations. The optimism of these individuals is so incredible and can certainly be appreciated by anyone working hard to pursue their dreams.

Own the Room follows the paths of five young innovators from across the globe who showcase their business plans to "change the world one big idea at a time." These individuals overcome cultural obstacles and push the limits in order to reach the top. Santosh, Alondra, Henry, Jason and Daniela have each qualified to represent their country at the annual Global Student Entrepreneur Awards in Macau, China. Each has the dream of taking their business to the next level to become the world's most influential change-maker. Aside from setting their eyes on the prize of $100,000, each hopes to raise awareness that "no matter where you come from, it does not define where you are going." They are each proud of their culture, their family support, and the chance to represent their country.

I enjoyed the emotional conversations in which the students share their cultural backgrounds and find their words to be genuine and spirited. Their determination, confidence, and fearlessness kept me wanting to see more. Costantini and Foster are clever to include the lifestyle, family background and the obstacles that each of these students face. That allows viewers to appreciate the students' journeys even more and perhaps to gain a better understanding of each of the young entrepreneurs' business ideas. The cinematography is fantastic, taking us into five areas of the world and showing viewers a variety of ways of life. The society in which you live does indeed partly shape you as an individual, and yet this documentary proves that it doesn't have to hold you back.

Own the Room delivers many messages and mainly demonstrates how determination is at the root of all success. If you are determined, you will be driven to work hard to achieve no matter how many obstacles confront you. Challenges serve to strengthen us. It is this determination that we see in each of the student entrepreneurs and which becomes so inspiring to viewers. Given the current state of the world right now, an inspiring film such as Own the Room is exactly what we need.

I give Own the Room 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 11 to 18. Adults would certainly love and appreciate this film just as much as kids. Own the Room will begin streaming on March 12,, 2021, on Disney+. Mark this date on your calendars because this is a film you're going to want to see.

Reviewed by Dominic D., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 11-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


CREW, THE
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
CREW, THE
NETFLIX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 13-18
Description - Life in the garage goes off track for a NASCAR crew chief and his racing team when a new boss shakes things up.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Crew is an enjoyable watch that teaches you in equal measures about racing and being there for your friends. Even for those who aren't NASCAR fans, this ten-episode show will grip your attention and sweep you up into a riptide of emotions.

Honestly, there's not much technical detail given about racing; the deepest the show gets into the subject matter is describing the inner workings of a muscle car engine. But viewers will not be disappointed. The Crew follows a group of coworkers - Kevin, Chuck, Amir, Jake and Beth - at Bobby Spencer Racing (a small NASCAR team out of North Carolina) through their daily lives - their highs, their lows and their in-betweens. Catherine Spencer, Bobby's daughter, takes over the company within the first episode. The high-and-mighty Stanford graduate right out of Silicon Valley is tasked with completely revamping the company. Careers are put in jeopardy, game hunting goes wrong (no animals were hurt in the making of this show) and we see exactly how much NASCAR teams love steak in all forms.

This rip-roaring show is led by the comedy powerhouse Kevin James, a true legend, who plays Kevin. He's the 'personality' of the office, a former racing driver who retired to the garage after an injury. Gary Anthony Williams plays the fix-it man, Chuck. Dan Ahdoot is the socially-awkward and anxious Amir. Freddie Stroma plays the slightly slow, but incredibly adorable Jake. Sarah Stiles is the curly-haired, sweet, Southern Beth. The femme-fatale of the show, Catherine Spencer, is played by Jillian Mueller. Of all the characters, I love Kevin (obviously) as well as Beth and Catherine. Both of the women have such layered characters, especially Catherine. We are only given hints at her childhood - save for the frequent mention of her Stanford degree, which is turned into a drinking game by Kevin and Frank. The cast is incredibly talented, especially in terms of their comedic timing. Their chemistry is visible on screen. You can tell that they would be the best of friends on set. The sets of The Crew are also so realistic!

The Crew is truly a show about community, friendship and sticking together. All of the members of the NASCAR team featured in the show are, as the High School Musical jingle goes, "all in this together." They bear their new boss Catherine together, and help each other through their problems. There's slight profanity at certain points in the show, and there are hunting scenes, but they're not graphic.

I give The Crew 5 stars out of 5 and recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults. The Crew will be available on Netflix on February 15, 2021.

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 13-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


BARB AND STAR GO TO VISTA DEL MAR
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BARB AND STAR GO TO VISTA DEL MAR
LIONSGATE FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT Click to purchase directly from the producer Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 15-18
Description - Lifelong friends Barb and Star embark on the adventure of a lifetime when they decide to leave their small Midwestern town for the first time - ever.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Barb And Star Go To Vista Del Mar is comedic genius! Hilarious lines are sprinkled throughout this film while friendships, romances and spies take center stage. Barb and Star really show how age is just a number.

The storyline follows middle-aged best friends Barb (Annie Mumolo) and Star (Kristen Wiig) who visit Vista Del Mar. On their vacation, they encounter the charming undercover spy Edgar (Jamie Dornan). Edgar, unbeknownst to the women, works for a villain (Kristen Wiig) whose plan is to murder all of Vista Del Mar.

This film shows how Kristen and Annie's comedy is at its peak. The motion picture parodies spy thrillers by exaggerated water spirits, deadly flies and turtle-filled lies. Even though the film pokes fun at action movies, there are serious topics discussed. Both friends are middle aged and believe their prime time has passed; they believe they are unable to have the adventures they've always dreamed of. Throughout the film, they overcome these doubts by falling in love, riding banana boats and fighting an evil super-villain. We also see the villain's backstory. She was born with a rare skin condition which made her vulnerable to bullying at a young age and it was difficult for her to make friends.

The moral of the movie is that no matter how old you are, adventure is out there for you; you just have to go looking for it. Both Barb and Star were hesitant to leave their mid-western hometown, believing that their adventure time had expired. They take a chance and go to Florida. Barb sheds all her fears and rides dirt bikes and walks on burning stones. Star falls in love, even when she thought she would never have another opportunity.

I give Barb and Star Go To Vista Del Mar 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 15 to 18, plus adults. It is available on Prime Video and on demand February 12, 2021.

By Heather S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 15-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Web Series

This title is available for purchase from LIONSGATE FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT


MAGIC SCHOOL BUS RIDES AGAIN, THE: ALL ABOUT EARTH
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MAGIC SCHOOL BUS RIDES AGAIN, THE: ALL ABOUT EARTH
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DVD, AGES 5-13
Description - Bus, do your stuff! Field trips with Ms. Frizzle are wilder than ever, into space, over to the Galapagos Islands even a plunge into the depths of the Sun itself.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Every moment in The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth is exciting! The brilliant colors, constant excitement and movement create a fun and fast paced adventure. I love how the action starts right from the beginning. The energy in the characters' voices adds to the enthralling energy of the whole series.

The storyline follows the Magic School Bus taking the class on out of this world field trip adventures. The bus and the class all turn into things to demonstrate firsthand knowledge of science and how things work!

I like that the storyline is repetitive throughout, yet very unique in the individual stories. Kids will love that they won't know what the next adventure will be, but they know it will be an exciting experience on each field trip. The camera shots that give quick close-ups when something exciting is going on make it suspenseful and exciting. The costumes for the kids are brightly colored and still normal for kids of this age. The costumes for Ms. Frizzle, the teacher, are always eccentric and smartly indicative of the current adventure. One constant set that is used in each episode is the magic school bus that takes them on all the adventures. The sets for each episode are unique to that field trip and are always brilliantly colored.

The music is suspenseful, typically fast-paced and captivating. The special effects are limitless since it is animated. The bus turns into anything imaginable. Ms. Fiona Frizzle is played by Kate McKinnon and Lily Tomlin plays professor Frizzle. Both of them give stunning performances.

The message of this show is that "learning can be fun and exciting." My favorite character is Ms. Frizzle. Her colorful character and crazy antics keep the adventure constant.

I give The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 12. Younger ones may not entirely understand but the colors and upbeat, fast-paced music will keep them entertained.

Reviewed by Melissa M., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Looking for an entertaining, educational and nostalgic TV series on DVD? Well, then the Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth! is perfect for you. Although it is targeted toward a younger audience, I still found myself attentive and interested in the story lines. Each episode has a fun adventure, mixed with an enthusiastic learning experience. It reminds me of how much I liked reading the original The Magic School Bus books when I was younger.

In the four episodes on this DVD, "Pigs in the Wind," "Hides and Seeks," "The Tales Glaciers Tell," and "Tim and the Talking Trees," the characters learn about the Earth's patterns and ways of communicating and how it's important to take care of the Earth. They also learn about wind patterns, how animals camouflage, how oxygen and carbon is preserved in glaciers for thousands of years and how ecosystems communicate with each other. And they also see many sights from different time periods and places that make amazing field trips.

My favorite episode is "Hides and Seeks," especially when half of the kids get to travel to different geographic locations and study animals camouflaging to report back to the other half of the kids. We see animals in the environmental atmosphere blending in, and in contrast we see the kids in their game of hide and seek. This show is for younger audiences, but some of the concepts are explained too quickly for me to grasp and won't make sense to everyone. A few characters are pretty different from the book, which makes them unique in this TV show. The voicing of the characters is realistic and fitting for their personalities. Although there is some repetition in ideas and story lines, it isn't enough to make the show any less fun to watch. I would definitely watch this show in my free time just for fun.

One of the messages in this series is love the earth and to protect it. This inspires people to preserve the wildlife and habitats. We are also shown that you can always find fun in learning and it's easier to learn when you get an inside look and explore things on your own, instead of read about them in a textbook. Sometimes the kids in the show find themselves in a scary situation, but they are never in grave danger. Apart from some concepts being a little hard to understand this series is pretty kid friendly great for school-aged kids.

I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 13. Adults and teenagers may enjoy it too. The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth! Is available on DVD now so look for it.

Reviewed by Rosemary K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth is a great choice for young kids and schools. Apart from a few minor flaws, these four episodes are well worth your time. Colorful animation, creative incorporation of important messages and nice humor are a few of the things that make is DVD unique Based on the original The Magic School Bus, this collection follows an elementary school class on their field trips and creative experiments that are all about Earth. When a scientific topic needs investigation, Miss Frizzle (Kate McKinnon) and the class jump aboard the magic school bus and get creative to figure out solutions to their problems.

There are many impressive elements in this show - from trees, to animals, to kids, the colorful animation is eye-catching. The animals are also very cute, as are some of the plot points. Humor for all ages, but primarily aimed toward younger kids, is woven throughout and laughs are spread out nicely. Another touch of creativity is the way that these episodes are supremely entertaining, but also very educational. It's seemingly just your normal animated show, and then all of a sudden, you're learning things without even realizing it! With all of this being said, there are a couple aspects that don't quite hold up. This collection has the same characters as the original The Magic School Bus, but most of their personalities don't match too well. Sometimes I find myself wondering if they really are the same characters. This could be disappointing for fans of the original The Magic School Bus series. Also, some things are just not realistic. Besides the school bus's magic, which is clearly fantasized, a lot of events occur that don't make much sense. For example, the students build a tower with hundreds of bricks in a short amount of time.

The message of this show is that teamwork is necessary to accomplish tasks. Whether it be setting the stage for a play or playing hide and seek, working together is vital. This DVD is terrific for learning science concepts.

I give The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 9, plus adults. This DVD is available now so look for it.

By Kyla C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth DVD is the perfect thing to give you a much-needed laugh and a much-needed lesson. While traveling all over the world, the characters in this show learn essential facts that help them with the problems they face. This series is worth the watch!

The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth DVD is compilation of episodes from The Magic School Bus: Rides Again, a spinoff of the 90s series, The Magic School Bus. The episodes in this DVD have everything to do with the Earth. Ms. Frizzle (Kate McKinnon) takes her students on epic adventures all around the world, in different time periods, and through various situations. And, of course, this is with the help of their magic school bus. The characters in this show use their smarts and creativity to have a blast, while learning new things about our planet.

When you watch this DVD it's evident that this is a fantastic show. First of all, the facts they learn are very useful, especially because they are related to concepts being learned in school. For instance, if you are learning about plants, then the episode "Tim and the Talking Trees" is perfect for you. It teaches about how the roots in trees and other plants are connected and therefore communicate in order to survive. Even if you're NOT in school when you watch this, it's still great to have the knowledge. Something else that makes this series so intriguing, are the settings. They are all very colorful and have a nice balance. This includes the way the characters are dressed. The colors of the wardrobe complement the backgrounds, context and the personality of each character. There are some flaws, like the comedy. Of course this is a kids' show, however, some of the jokes are a little unsubtle. Also, there are times when the acting seems very scripted, and the pace of the dialogue and interactions seem a little off. I had a high expectation for this show, since I used to watch the original when I was younger. While this show didn't exactly meet my expectation, it could prove to work really well for young kids now.

The message of The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth is that exploring and being curious is a good thing, and that curiosity can lead to extraordinary discoveries. The characters aren't afraid of showing how fond they are of exploring and learning new things. This can be uplifting for kids who may get made fun of for being intelligent or inquisitive.

As you can probably already tell, The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth is an engaging DVD that you can watch whenever you want to learn something, have a laugh, or just want to watch an entertaining show! I rate it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 10. This is an amazing DVD for parents to watch with their kids, and it provokes discussion afterwards. The Magic School Bus Rides Again: All About Earth DVD is available now. So look for it.

By Maica N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 90 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 5-13
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


MINARI
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
MINARI
A24 Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - A Korean American family moves to an Arkansas farm in search of its own American dream. Amidst the challenges of this new life in the strange and rugged Ozarks, they discover the undeniable resilience of family and what really makes a home.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Minari, a semi-autobiographical and earnest portrayal of an immigrant family, written and directed by Isaac Lee Chung, tugs at viewers' heartstrings and is surely a 2021 must-watch. The incredible starring cast, intricate storyline, poignant background score and perfectly punctuated cinematography all combine to make this Korean and English feature a beautiful masterpiece.

The name of the film, Minari, is another name for Korean watercress, which is key to the plotline. When the story begins the Yi family had immigrated to the U.S. from Korea years ago; Jacob (Steven Yeun) and Monica (Ye-Ri Han), parents to David (Alan Kim) and Anne (Noel Cho), are chicken sexers by profession. The family moves from California to the Ozarks for new opportunities. Specifically, Arkansas, where they are greeted by their new yet run-down mobile home and by Paul, an eccentric evangelist. As they settle into their new home, problems in the family begin to set in. In the name of bringing back a bit of the family spirit, Monica invites her mother, Soonja (Yuh-Jung Youn), to come and stay with them. The foul-mouthed, cards-playing, yet adorable halmeoni (grandma in Korean) arrives and totally shakes things up, bonding with the grandkids over growing minari, playing cards, and watching wrestling. When tragedy strikes, though, the family is put through a resilience test like never before.

Lee Isaac Chung took inspiration from his own childhood growing up on his parents' plot of land to create this film; it's personal, and it shows. This film is a "the summer when everything changed" type of story . Steven Yeun is, as always, masterful in encapsulating the minimal emotions and laconic speech of his character. Veteran Korean actress Yuh-Jung Youn is my other favorite in this film; her character's feisty-yet-lovable grandma persona truly fits. She's an unwavering icon of the South Korean film industry and her experience shows. Also, the cinematography team for Minari, as well as the editing team, have worked meticulously to create a seamless viewing experience that accentuates emotions, waits for just long enough to switch scenes, and adds the perfect level of drama to every scene. Minari as a whole makes it feel like you're peeking into the Yi family's life--it's breathtaking.

The Sundance Award-winning film Minari is a priceless portrait of resilience within family, of sticking together even through the hardest times, and of enjoying the smallest things in life. Minari has some mild language and there are certain religious elements that parents should watch out for.

I give Minari 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 11 to 18, plus adults. Minari releases in theaters on February 12, 2021, and On-Demand February 26, 2021.

Reviewed by Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Minari is a film that bears its soul, overflowing with heart and humanity, a snapshot of a family in metamorphosis, adjusting to their new surroundings, and all the challenges that come with that transition within their family unit.

Directed by Lee Issac Chung and partially inspired by his own upbringing, we see much of Minari through the eyes of David (Alan Kim), the youngest member of a Korean family that moves from California to Arkansas in hopes of starting a farm. As the movie starts, we're with David and his sister, Anne (Noel Cho) in the back of their family's car as they arrive at their new mobile home. David's parents, Jacob (Steven Yuen) and Monica (Ye-ri Han) are experienced chicken sexers, but it's his father's commitment to his vision of a new way of life for their family that pulls them halfway across the country, which sparks some disagreement between David's parents. Just as the relationship between David's parents reaches a boiling point, David's grandmother, Soonja (Yuh-jung Youn) comes to town, throwing a wrench in the family's already precarious situation.

Punctuated by mundane, yet memorable and ultimately powerful moments of warmth, Minari is kind of a knockout, and it achieves this through the power of its subtlety and simplicity. Minari functions as advertised: A family, a vision, a farm. The movie wears its heart on its sleeve without compromising the story it tells. There's a scene involving the swapping of Mountain Dew for bodily fluids, and also one in which a family member is struck by a sudden medical conflict and both are just as effective. It's very moving in the end, but tonally, it goes in multiple fairly disparate directions and arrives at a powerful coda, ending in neither triumph or defeat, but with a family having a newfound level of appreciation for what they bring to each other's lives.

In a time where seeing family, for many people, has been on pause--rendered unsafe by the current global circumstances--a movie about a family drawing together and marked by a fondness for those moments shared with loved ones feels meaningful beyond its intention to document Chung's childhood. It's an authentically American story that's told from the perspectives of those whose stories don't always get told. Ultimately, Minari derives its scope not from scale, but from emotion.

Audiences have been talking about Minari for over a year; it really is a gem, and I hope you'll seek it out. I give Minari 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages X to Y. Minari is currently playing in select theaters, as well as virtual cinemas, and it will be released in select theaters Feb 12 and on video on demand February 26, 2021.

By Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

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


DOLPHIN ISLAND (2021)
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DOLPHIN ISLAND (2021)
ENTERTAINMENT SQUAD Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 7-18
Description - After losing her parents, fourteen-year-old Annabel Coleridge lives with her fisherman grandfather on a Caribbean island paradise surrounded by an extended family of loving but quirky oddballs and her best friend, a dolphin named Mitzy. Everything changes when her rich maternal grandparents arrive with a shifty lawyer to bring her back to New York. It's up to her grandfather, her friends, Desaray, her new social worker, her charming son, Mateo, and Mitzy to find a way for Anna to stay on the island home she loves so much.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Dolphin Island is a very emotional and different movie. It has some scenes where you can just feel the emotions of the characters coming through the screen.

The story follows a girl named Annabel (Tyler Jade Nixon) who lives with her paternal grandfather Jonah (Peter Woodward). Her best friend is a dolphin named Mitzy. Then, her maternal grandfather (David Raizor) and grandmother (Annette Lovrien Duncan) come to take her back to New York with the help of a shifty lawyer (Bob Bledsoe). Now it is up to Annabel and her island friends and family and Mitzy to find a way to keep her on the island.

Wow, there is a lot to talk about in this film. First of all, there is quite a lot of drama with lots of very emotional scenes and excellent performances from the actors. Second, there is a dolphin in the film named Mitzy. Mitzy does lots of tricks and is a real dolphin. Her training is amazing; she impressed me so much with how she performs in this film. Also, the cast has lots of diversity. I like that, especially since the events of the last year that made us aware of the lack of diversity in movies. Lastly, the sets are remarkable. There are many locations around the island where this takes place, all of which take place on a Caribbean island.

The message of Dolphin Island is that love conquerors all; love is a bond that can't be broken and loved ones will always seek to find each other.

I give Dolphin Island 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to18. Dolphin Island will be available March 2, 2021.

By Avalon N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Dolphin Island is an interesting movie because of the dynamic between the two characters, Jonah (Peter Woodward) and Annabelle (Tyer Jade Nixon). I enjoy the relationship between the characters and the humanity added to the dolphin is a unique touch. It is interesting to watch Jonah and Annabelle interact with the dolphin. I really love seeing the dolphin perform human tasks and seemingly communicating with Annabelle. This shows how the director, Mike Disa, humanizes the dolphin. Dolphin Island makes me believe the characters enjoy spending time with each other and they truly love one another. The only problem I have with the movie is the title. Calling it Dolphin Island makes me think there's a bunch of dolphins in the movie and they are the focus of the movie. However, the movie is good enough for me to quickly get over that disappointment.

The story is about a 14-year-old girl, Annabelle, whose parents die and who lives in the Bahamas with Jonah, her grandfather. Her best friend is a dolphin named Mitzy. Life is good until Annabelle's maternal grandparents (David Raizor and Annette Lovrien Duncan) show up with a lawyer and demand that Annabelle come to New York to live with them.

At times Dolphin Island can be sad and emotional, especially when it comes to Annabelle and her great loss. The actors portray the emotion you would expect from a family that loses a loved one. Annabelle's character says and does some things that I see myself doing in the same situation, such as treating Mitzy like a person. When Mitzy sprays Jonah, Annabelle says it is because Mitzy is a good judge of humor. Also, Peter Woodward (as Jonah) really seems to have a good relationship with Annabelle. For example, when Jonah says he wants to show Annabelle what it is like to be happy, I really believe his character wants this. Dolphin Island shows us the relationship between some of the people on the island with Annabelle, Mitzy and Jonah. Seeing those relationships makes us see why Annabelle is so happy on the island and how this helps her cope with her parents' death. The story offers a brilliant take on what makes a family a true family - sometimes family is by blood, sometimes by friendships, and sometimes with animals. Dolphin Island presents some unpredictable plot twists you don't expect along with strong character development.

The message of this movie is that family will always be there for you and that love conquers all, even when things are at their worst. Along with that strong message, just like the title suggests, Dolphin Island teaches viewers a little about dolphins and how lovable and smart they really are.

I give Dolphin Island 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18. Grownups will enjoy it as well. It is releasing March 2, 2021 on most digital platforms. Look for it.

Ayden P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Dolphin Island is a very funny and a heartwarming movie. This family friendly film has a cute and well trained dolphin that makes it very amusing to watch.

Dolphin Island follows a young girl, Annabel (Tyler Jade), whose parents are deceased and who lives with her grandfather (Peter Woodward) on a boat. Annabel's best friend is a dolphin named Mitzie who is trained to pick up trash from the sea. One day a social worker comes to inspect Annabel's living situation and later her other grandparents (Annette Duncan and David Raisor) arrive, wanting to take custody of her. Things fall apart and we discover that love wins in the end.

This movie has beautiful scenarios of the ocean and landscapes. The camera work is excellent. The dolphin gives this movie an interesting touch, because it is so well trained and the audience is amazed at what the dolphin is capable of. The storyline is very interesting and relatable. It is the type of life event that some children whose parents have passed, may have to go through. My favorite part is when the grandfather thinks he has lost Annabel, but really she's out swimming with Mitzie. The issue of who Annabel should live with, is central to this film. Annabel, even though she's very young, knows who cares for her most. We see how Annabel's maternal grandparents are trying to trick her into coming with then, saying it's for her own good. But Annabel loves her paternal grandfather and you can see how much she means to him. The dolphin is my favorite actor in the film. After the movie ends there are bloopers showing them training the dolphin and doing tricks with her. I like that this movie is filmed on such a beautiful island.

The moral of this film is to trust a child's judgment when it comes to who they should be living with. Children feel most comfortable with the person that loves them and keeps them safe.

I give Dolphin Island 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18 plus adults. Dolphin Island will be available on March 2, 2021 on many VOD platforms.

By Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


LLAMA LLAMA: FUN WITH FRIENDS
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
LLAMA LLAMA: FUN WITH FRIENDS
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DVD, AGES 3-7
Description - Join Llama Llama, Nelly Gnu, Luna Giraffe, Euclid the Sheep and Gilroy Goat as they explore their friendly hometown and make childhood memories.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Llama Llama: Fun With Friends is perfect for someone that loves adventures with friends. I love this series because, for every problem Llama Llama comes across there is a solution that is found with the help of his friends. No matter how difficult the problem is, all of Llama Llama's friends were happy to help however they could.

This DVD is comprised of a series of episodes from the TV series, where Llama Llama overcomes obstacles throughout his daily life. He is able to accomplish this with the help of his friends and his family. Every obstacle teaches Llama Llama and his friends an important life lesson.

In every episode my favorite part is when all of the animals come together and find a way to bring happiness and fun to whatever situation they are currently in. I love how they make the best out of what they have and learn to enjoy it. The voice actors in this series are terrific. Specifically Jennifer Garner who plays Mama Llama; her performance stands out above the rest. The care she feels for Llama Llama comes through loud and clear. Another actor that stands out is Islie Hirvonen who plays Nellie Gnu. I love how her character is always happy. Her voice sounds so upbeat and the character charms you from the get go.

The important message you get from this show is that you should enjoy what you do. If you don't enjoy what you are doing then you should find something that is fun and enjoyable. I can relate to this message and think that most children can also.

The animation in this film is terrific. The backgrounds look very realistic. The way the scooters move and the water looks are also realistic. I love the life lessons in each episode and seeing all the teamwork it takes to solve their problems.

I give Llama Llama: Fun With Friends 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 7.

Reviewed by Lorelei T., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Llama Llama: Fun With Friends makes the childhood stories we all know and love come to life in a spectacular and fun way. This DVD is a compilation of episodes from the animated series based on the children's book Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney.

Each episode in this show is full of adventure, whether it's looking for a missing tooth, losing a race, or just flying kites. Every episode, Llama Llama and his friends learn something new and so does the audience.

Jennifer Garner (13 Going on 30) has a very distinctive and warm voice while portraying Mama Llama. While Llama Llama is voiced by Shayle Simons, whose voice is very young and natural sounding. The animation, especially of the characters, is very colorful and feels like the pages of a storybook awakening. Each episode consists of different plot lines and introduces new characters and scenes. You never know what to expect or what will happen next in each episode, making this show one of a kind. Voice director and series casting by Doug Parker makes this entire show worth the watch!

Even though every episode has a different message, the overall theme is like the words that Llama Llama's many friends say: "Never say never! Don't give up." You don't know how far you can go. This show promotes positive social behaviors, such as caring, helping one another and being there for your friends.

Llama Llama: Fun With Friends gets 5 out of 5 stars from me and I recommend it for ages 2 to 8. You can find Llama Llama: Fun With Friends on DVD now. Look for it!

By Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Llama Llama: Fun with Friends!, like so many of the other Llama Llama DVDs, teaches helpful life-lessons, like patience and discussing how you feel with others. The animation is simple and 2D, with a variety of adorable animals.

This collection follows Llama Llama (Shayle Simons), a playful Llama and some of his adventures with his friends Nelly Gnu, Luna Giraffe, Euclid the Sheep and Gilroy Goat. It has 165 hours of fun, with 15 episodes, each lasting around 11 minutes. Episodes include some about the seasons like Last Day of Summer, Spring Fever and Snow Show. Others cover a variety of experiences such as Happy Birthday Llama Llama, Zoom! Zoom! Zoom! and Llama Llama Shopping Drama.

This show is based on the beloved Llama Llama books by Anna Dewdney. I admire how the creators of this show do so much with just a little help from the books. Kudos to the writers and to George Gabriel, who wrote the show's theme song; it's very catchy. This cast includes Jennifer Garner who voices Mama Llama and her soothing voice fits the role perfectly. My favorite episode is Happy Birthday Llama Llama because it shows how much friends care for one another. My favorite characters are Grandma (Kathleen Barr) and Grandpa Llama (David Orth/David Poole) because wherever they are, they bring fun along with them.

There are many positive messages throughout this DVD, including patience, making the most out of everything and problem solving and friendship.

I give Llama Llama: Fun with Friends! 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 9. This DVD is available now, so look for it.

Reviewed by Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

The DVD Llama Llama: Fun With Friends is a collection of episodes from the animated children's show, Llama Llama, on Netflix. In this DVD Llama Llama and his friends go on adventures and learn valuable lessons.

The stories in these episodes follow Llama Llama (Shayle Simons), and his friends having fun and learning along the way. Even though Llama Llama is obviously a llama, this show talks about issues that real kids deal with. Mama Llama (Jennifer Garner) is also a part of the activities with Llama Llama and his friends, encouraging him to have fun, be kind, and trust that everything will be okay.

In all the episodes, Llama Llama and his friends learn something new and viewers can learn along with them. My favorite episode is "Llama Llama Shopping Drama," because it shows Llama Lama being impatient as his mother shops, which I am sure many kids can relate to. In this episode, Llama Llama learns that, in life, you need to be patient. Another thing I like about this show is that it includes the events that happen in the Llama Llama books, but as a TV episode. I used to read these books all the time, and I was both surprised and happy when I recognized the familiar storylines. The lessons that Llama Llama and his friends learn are something a viewer may need a refresher on, or they may even be something they want to teach someone else. Either way, this show has great reminders of what's important about life.

The message of Llama Llama: Fun With Friends is that there is always something to learn. Whether it's an educational or character development lesson, it can be helpful in knowing how you live your life.

Llama Llama: Fun With Friends is an awesome DVD! I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 7. The DVD is available now so go check it out!

By Giana N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
Runtime: 185 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 37-7
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99
Media: DVD
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


MAP OF TINY PERFECT THINGS, THE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MAP OF TINY PERFECT THINGS, THE
AMAZON PRIME Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Two teens who live the same day repeatedly, enabling them to create the titular map. The Map of Tiny Perfect Things is an American science fiction romantic comedy-drama film directed by Ian Samuels, from a screenplay by Lev Grossman, based upon his short story of the same name. It stars Kathryn Newton, Kyle Allen, Jermaine Harris, Anna Mikami, Josh Hamilton, Cleo Fraser, and Jorja Fox.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Map of Tiny Perfect Things is a fun film with amazing stunts, a heart-warming teenage love story, a time loop and even a really cool 4-D cube drawing! The idea in this story of having infinite do-overs to create the perfect day is fascinating. Putting it all together, this film is a great combination of action, light romance, adventure, and comedy.

The Map of Tiny Perfect Things features Mark (Kyle Allen) who gets stuck in a time loop and is living the same day over and over again. Every night at midnight, he falls asleep and wakes up with the previous day starting over again. In the mist of the time loop, one day he meets a mysterious girl named Margaret (Kathryn Newton) who is stuck in the same time loop. They end up on an adventure all around the city finding the "tiny things" that make up that one perfect day, while trying to decide if and how to break the time loop.

I enjoyed watching Mark and Margaret's friendship develop and all the wild things they do without suffering consequences since they are in the time loop, like drive a tractor down the street. My favorite part is when they completely trash a model home, knowing the time loop would put it back the way it was. Another part I love is when Mark shows his dad the tattoo he got. It's funny because he shows it to his dad right before he goes back into the time loop so his dad won't remember. The Map of Tiny Perfect Things has some really great stunts in it, too. One stunt I thought was cool was when Mark throws his water bottle at a closing door and makes it through!

The message of this film is that sometimes the most perfect things in life may be the smallest things. One great lesson Mark's character shows is how to care about others. I loved seeing him remember all the ways he can help people in his town each day and spread kindness. A couple of things adults should look out for in this film include places with Margaret drinking and mild cursing.

I rate The Map of Tiny Perfect Things 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18 years old. Adults will like it, too. Don't forget to check out The Map of Tiny Perfect Things on Amazon Prime Video, February 12, 2021.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

I really like The Map of Tiny Perfect Things, because it has an interesting story line that makes you think differently about life. It teaches viewers a very important life lesson, as well as making you feel something while you're watching. It's simple but complex, and overall just a really cute and enjoyable movie. Plus, it's a good length, not too long or short.

The storyline follows two characters, Mark (Kyle Allen) and Margaret (Kathryn Newton), who are basically trapped in time. The same day repeats over and over again, and they can't ever die due to the fact that time has stopped. When Mark and Margaret finally meet each other, they go around the town looking for the "Tiny Perfect things," hoping this will un-trap them from this time dimension. Throughout their time together, they discover new things about each other, and how special the little things in life really are.

I really enjoyed the film's storylines of the two main characters. They have their own opinions on life. Also, the casting for this is terrific. Kyle Allen and Kathryn Newton are both believable as their characters and own their roles. Kathryn's execution of Margaret is impeccable. She really makes the character stand out, and doesn't hold back. We see all the different sides of the character. Margaret makes us look at things from a different perspective. Kyle also has great execution of Mark. You can really feel all of his frustration and anger. It's almost as if we are there with him. They definitely locked me in while I was watching, and my thoughts never wandered. I also enjoyed the special effects, which are perfect for the film. Throughout the movie there are little things that they incorporate that really add to the dimension of the film. For instance, there are multiple scenes where they show us examples of tiny perfect things. This not only contributes to the lesson of the film, but also makes you realize the value of life, and how most of us are just going through the motions. It reminds us how special life really is.

The message of this film is to never take life for granted, and be grateful for the little things in life. You never know when you can encounter a drastic change, so always live life to the fullest while you can. Be aware that this film does have some profanity. However it's pretty mild.

I give The Map of Tiny Perfect Things 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 21, as well as adults. You can watch The Map of Tiny Perfect Things Worldwide starting on February 12, 2021 on Amazon Prime.

Reviewed by Mikella G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

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


SNOOPY SHOW, THE
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SNOOPY SHOW, THE
APPLE TV Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 4-18
Description - The world's most iconic dog is ready for his close-up. Dive into new adventures with the happy-dancing, high-flying, big-dreaming beagle, who's joined by best friend Woodstock and the rest of the "Peanuts" gang.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Time to break out the classic Peanuts dance moves because today we are celebrating the new hit series, The Snoopy Show! The Snoopy Show has everything a classic Peanut's fan will enjoy. The show looks incredibly like the original comic series, as if the animators took an old comic strip and put it on your home television! In addition, the writers made an outstanding effort to make every character stay true to their original passions and personalities. Instead of making the characters go on the same repetitive adventures (like a lot of cartoons do), The Snoopy Show brings brand new adventures sure to make you want more and more.

The Snoopy Show follows everyone's favorite beagle, Snoopy (Terry McGurrin), with each episode including different stories surrounding him. Episode stories range from Snoopy writing his own autobiography to exploring the origin story between Snoopy and Woodstock. Just when you think there can't possibly be another amazing adventure, The Snoopy Show consistently delivers new and original stories that all ages can enjoy.

The primary component of this creative revival that made me smile is the animation and art. The art director, Joseph Holt, surpassed any expectations of the show living up to its classic art style by making it authentic and original. The Snoopy Show is also extremely well voice cast because of how each character's voice sounds like its predecessor. Out of all the Peanuts film content over the years, like The Peanuts Movie, The Snoopy Show really impresses me because of how writers can continue to find new angles to explore the characters and always put them in new entertaining scenarios.

The Snoopy Show is the perfect new show for kids. It has a lot of comedic content in an appropriate way, fun adventures, and lessons and morals for viewers to learn every episode. The show explores themes such as family, friendship, and gratefulness. One of the key morals taught in the show is to always be grateful for the people around you, and to never take people for granted; it also communicates the message that sometimes you just need someone you love to make you smile.

The Snoopy Show soars higher than Charlie Brown's kite with a miraculous, nostalgic art style and new adventures all ages can enjoy. Similar to how Peppermint Patty scores five out of five goals in hockey, I am giving The Snoopy Show 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 4 to 18 plus adults, because who doesn't love Peanuts? The Snoopy Show premieres Feb 5, 2021 on Apple TV+, so make sure to check it out!

Reviewed by Jude A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

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


LAND
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LAND
FOCUS FEATURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 11-18
Description - A bereaved woman seeks out a new life, off the grid in Wyoming.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The upcoming drama film Land, by director Robin Wright, is intriguing, valiant and relatable. I found it astounding knowing Robin Wright also starred in this film as the principal figure Edee. Considering this was Wright's feature film directorial debut, I can't deny that she surpassed my expectations for this film.

Land shows the raw emotion of a human overcome by grief and follows Edee (Wright) as she manages with unimaginable despondency after the passing of her spouse and child. Edee makes a bold choice to depart from society, seeking out a new life off the grid in Wyoming. Leading up to that moment, she tosses her phone, buys canned merchandise and supplies, and finds an isolated, somewhat-rundown cabin within the Wyoming wild. Throughout the film, you can see how isolated she feels -- once she starts a new life, it's like she's left her old self behind with society.

Edee is certain about her brave decision, and ready to start a new life. However, there is no coordinate for the area's unwavering winter. She is incapable of keeping the fire going to warm her cabin. After a bear continually eats her food, Edee is on the brink of starvation, as well as frail and too cold to stand. Edee is spared by a neighborly hunter/woodsman (Demi�n Bichir) who brings her back to life and instructs her on how to survive living on the land. As Edee starts to construct a new life for herself outside of civilization, she works to manage her past and see toward a bright future.

My favorite part in Land would have to be when Edee was fishing at the nearby lake. As she is struggling to catch a fish, she becomes frustrated. Then, she notices a young man, Miguel (Demi�n Bichir) chasing his young son, Drew (Finlay Wojtak-Hissong) She recalls memories of her late spouse and child and follows them from afar as they run through the trees. I enjoyed watching as she relived those precious moments from her past, and it was overall a heartfelt moment in this film.

However, although Land was only 88 minutes, the film felt way longer than that, due to the slow pace. There are many relatable moments within the film, but I felt some scenes dragged and, at some moments, many scenes felt "dry." This film promotes positive social behaviors and shows the true meaning of kindness. What I took away from Land is that it's okay to be not okay. And, sometimes, we need a break from our continuous busy schedule in life and to break free!

I give Land 4 out of 5 stars, with an age recommendation of 11 to 18, plus adults. Land debuts February 12, 2021 in theaters.

By Nathalia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 11-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


GLITCH IN THE MATRIX, A
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
GLITCH IN THE MATRIX, A
MAGNOLIA PICTURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 14-18
Description - Documentary filmmaker Rodney Ascher tackles this question "are we living in a simulation?" with testimony, philosophical evidence and scientific explanation in his for the answer.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A Glitch In The Matrix is a radical, uniquely-presented look at simulation theory in the digital age - specifically, how those who prescribe to the notion that we're all living in a simulation came to those beliefs and how this belief affects their outlook. Dense, but accessible, directed by Rodney Ascher, it's the rare documentary that asks a question it knows it can't answer.

In the late 1970s, famed author Phillip K. Dick, known for his sci-fi stories, gave a talk where he laid out his theory that we are living in a simulation. This becomes the entry point into the maw of simulation theory, its depth only outmatched by its complexity. A Glitch In The Matrix utilizes a famed and celebrated movie as its main frame of reference in exploring its theme -- The Matrix, a film that put simulation theory into the mainstream. Ascher's film investigates where stimulation theory stemmed from, how its tenets and principles have been echoed throughout history by everyone from Plato to Elon Musk to current times.

The conceit of A Glitch In The Matrix can't so much be explored as marveled at, and the possibilities of a simulated reality tinkered with, and so that's exactly what it does. This film boldly depicts this proposed reality entirely through CG animation and clips from popular culture that have dealt with similar ideas. I respect that a film about simulations indulges so heavily in them. For example, many people who speak in the film have their identities shielded by virtual avatars that filter their perspectives, enhancing the feel of a simulation. This method of using simulation techniques in a film about simulation gets very "meta," but, in doing so, adheres to and honors the film's topic and not in a show-offy or self-congratulatory way.

I have respect for any movie that seeks to make you question the world you live in. Socially and politically, A Glitch In The Matrix does that quite literally. If you're looking for a documentary that finds the key to its main topic and deconstructs it bit by bit, this isn't that, but if you're willing to go on a bit of a journey through a school of thought via the lens of a capable filmmaker that challenges what you think about your own reality, sit down, give this a chance and enjoy it. A Glitch In The Matrix is left incomplete almost by design, but somehow that works to its charm.

I give A Glitch In The Matrix 3 out of 5 stars and an age rating of 14 to 18 for some simulated violence and the description of a violent crime. It just premiered at this year's Sundance Film Festival, and it will be available in theaters and at home on February 5, 2021.

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

We have all questioned our existence one way or another in our lives. Am I real? A Glitch in the Matrix explores this question in the most mysterious and heart-pounding way possible. Documentaries can be dry, yet this film is as thrilling as any action movie.

A Glitch in the Matrix sets the entire premise of simulation theory around a speech by famous author Philip K. Dick. This documentary ponders the highly uncharted theory of simulated reality. With a series of interviews, animated cut scenes and references to the movie The Matrix.

While the eyewitnesses may seem, at first glance, irrelevant, as they don't have any professional credibility, their personal real-world experiences creates a sense of relatability, which is much needed for such an obscure subject. Also, as the eyewitnesses are animated it allows their stories to be animated effectively too, granting visual access to their thoughts and words. A Glitch in the Matrix has no plotline per se; however throughout the entire film you feel literal chills. The sound effects and music by Jonathan Snipes create a feeling of total mystery and sinister experiences. Direction by Rodney Ascher, along with 3D character modeling by Maksim Solonovich really demonstrate creativity in all aspects of the production. My favorite part is when Joshua Cooke describes his experience with simulation theory and The Matrix. His experience is well animated and narrated, allowing me to get a sense of what he felt as he went through with such a heinous act.

The message of this film suggests that many are "alive, yet not living." Meaning that this life is finite, and whether simulated or not we should all live it to the fullest. This film does display explicit language, religious content, animated and descriptive violence, brief sexual content and smoking.

A Glitch in the Matrix gets 5 out of 5 stars and I recommend it to mature 14 to 18-year-olds as well as adults. You can watch A Glitch in the Matrix in theatres and everywhere February 5, 2021.

Reviewed by Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

I found myself having a great time while watching A Glitch In The Matrix. This spine-tingling documentary will have you thinking outside the box. The interesting testimonials teemed with well-matching visuals, is a recipe for success. I was pulled in for the entire duration of the film and found myself a tad down when it was over. A Glitch In The Matrix is a truly amazing documentary.

Filmmaker Rodney Ascher directs an amazing documentary with intriguing testimonials from numerous people that believe we are actually living in a simulation. Paul Gude, Jesse Orion and many others share their unique experiences that support the idea of simulation theory. A Glitch In The Matrix raises the question "Are we living in a simulation?"

From the very beginning of this film, I felt very compelled in a chilling and somewhat exciting way. The visuals fit what is being said perfectly. I did not find myself lost at any part, as the documentary is split into well divided sections which helped me understand what they were talking about a little bit more. Another compelling thing are the testimonials from many people. Each of their stories is unique and supports the main message of the film. I started watching this documentary not knowing anything about simulation theory. I surprisingly found myself refreshed and felt like I learned a little bit from watching this film. I loved every second of it. The film had me leaning forward in my seat wanting to watch more.

A Glitch In The Matrix gives the audience a chance to think beyond the normal and challenge them to dive a little deeper into their views of life. Throughout the documentary, you might find yourself drawn into each individual testimonial and eager to know more. Despite the good parts, you should know that there is a small amount of violence and profanity, but there is nothing that is unfitting.

I give A Glitch In The Matrix 4 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 15 to 18, plus adults. A Glitch In The Matrix is available for rent on Prime Video now.

Reviewed by Hazel A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic age 15

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 14-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


OUR TIME MACHINE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
OUR TIME MACHINE
101 STUDIOS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 15-18
Description - When influential Chinese artist Ma Liang (a.k.a. Maleonn) realizes that his father Ma Ke, an accomplished Peking Opera director, is suffering from Alzheimer's disease, he invites his father to collaborate on his most ambitious project to date - a haunting, magical, autobiographical stage performance featuring life-size mechanical puppets called "Papa's Time Machine". Through the creation of this play, the two men confront their mortality before time runs out and memories are lost forever.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Our Time Machine offers such an emotional journey about the reality of Alzheimer's disease. This is a documentary about a son doing what he can to show his appreciation toward his father, who is has Alzheimer's disease. This film is beautifully created, with a very emotional tone as we get to the see the production of the play and the hardships it faces, while we also see the father's health declining. It shows the ups and downs in the art world and what a son is capable of doing to express his gratitude and appreciation. A Chinese artist creates the biggest project of his career - an autobiographical play that uses mechanical puppets to tell the story. He struggles with time, money and his father's health, as he becoming more and more ill with Alzheimer's disease.

Our Time Machine is the documented story of Maleonn and his father Ma Ke. Throughout the film, we learn about the background of the family, and how invested they are in the art world. The story really shows the emotions that the son is feeling, as he feels frustrated, sad, emotional, but excited at the same time. It is an emotional journey, as there are father/son moments that are very touching, but also the doctor visits for the father are extremely sad as they show his health degrading. The main parts of the film are how the play is taking direction and its process, and the counterpart of how Ma Ke's health is declining to the point he does not remember the most basic aspects of life.

The camera work is diverse as it moves from scene to scene, depending on the context of the work. There are moments where pictures are shown or celebrations, such as birthdays and anniversaries, take place in real time. The camera moves as the characters move, and capture the complete context of the scenes. The locations vary throughout the film. The flow is very continuous, and everything takes place in different scenarios. The two central sets of the documentary are the parents' house and the place where the play takes life. In addition, locations from the past and present, and even outside the country can be observed.

There is little background music, and it changes from scene to scene. It does not drive the action in the film as much as the conversations between all the characters. That is what gives life to the film. But the sound effects are essential to get the complete message. They vary and are mostly focused to enhance dialogues between the puppet father and the puppet son. They help with the flow of the play and how it is presented in stage. All the visual effects take place in scenes where the son or the father are reminiscing about the past, and in scenes where the son is dreaming and creating his play. They are remarkable, as they are thoughts that are later done exactly how they were intended.

This documentary took around three years to complete, focusing on the artist Maleonn and his family. There are many persons involved in the film, as it shows the family of the protagonist as well as his team and employees that give life to the play.

Everything that Maleonn does in this film has an ultimate goal - to show his appreciation and gratitude to his father before is too late. He does everything he can to make this possible, but time and money are to his disadvantage. Everything that we see and feel during the documentary just highlights the main message: We need to appreciate and embrace every moment with others before it is too late. In this case, the artist tries to do this with his father who is forgetting everything and everyone around him. This is a hard reality for many families around the world, and it is necessary to live and appreciate those good moments before the bad ones that may come in the future. Sometimes those good moments are the ones that give us strength and hope for the hard ones that can come.

You should know that it contains some profanity and behavior. There is a scene where the artist is celebrating his birthday with his colleagues. They are drinking heavily and use some mild language, d*mn and *ss. Also, smoking is a recurrent act throughout the movie. Almost all the main characters can be observed smoking at some point of the film.

What I love about this film is the engineering process of creating every single thought Maleonn has. I was mesmerized by the creativity and the work that took place to create all the pieces of the stage and the mechanical puppets. They are so realistic and so well designed. The scenarios in the play are breathtaking. They recreate a plane from scratch and everything is neat and planned. I was in awe in every single scene where all these elements are shown, as they are incredibly created and structured. The protagonist is Chinese artist Maleonn. His father Ma Ke, is a well renowned Peking Opera director.

I give Our Time Machine 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 15 to 18, plus adults. This film is beautiful in all areas. It has great production values, a real and emotional storyline, it sends across a valuable message, and the use of art and creativity throughout the documentary is of high quality. It is a rather complex film, as it is intended for older audiences such as older teenagers and adults. Also, it shows the hard reality of a person with Alzheimer's and the emotional toll that takes on the family. This film shows the frustration, the sadness, the rawness of the desperation in the father's face, and that makes it more touching and real. I shed some tears when I saw these scenes, as I could see the impotence of both the father and the son in different moments, and that is what really made me think about my family and how to appreciate every moment I get to share with them.

Reviewed by David O., KIDS FIRST! Reviewer, age 20

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 15-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


SOME KIND OF HEAVEN
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SOME KIND OF HEAVEN
MAGNOLIA PICTURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12-18
Description - Behind the gates of a palm tree-lined fantasyland, four residents of America's largest retirement community, The Villages, FL, strive to find solace and meaning.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This documentary is very interesting. It has the best cinematography I've ever seen in a documentary and it covers quite a serious subject with respect.

This documentary follows four residents of The Villages, a massive retirement home in Florida - Anne and Reggie, a married couple; Barbara, a widow; and Dennis, a man who doesn't actually live at The Villages. Anne struggles with her marriage, due to Reggie's drug addiction and worsening mental health. Barbara's husband died four months before filming and she is nervous about dating again. Dennis lives in his van, and hangs around The Villages in hopes of finding a wealthy woman in his last few years.

Before this film, I had never heard of The Villages. I found the story of its residents fascinating. The Villages is often referred to as "The Disneyworld for Retirees," and when you hear that, you imagine a perfect place to spend the later part of your life. The problem with utopias is that they're basically impossible. And the goal of the film is to showcase that The Villages is not a perfect utopia. It follows the struggles of these four people and how they can't just escape their pain with tennis or acting classes. One thing I like about this film is that it doesn't come off as malicious. It's not trying to expose The Villages for being a place of fake happiness or mock the residents or anything like that. Instead I got the impression that the director wanted to tell a story about real people trying to cope with their problems and I can respect that.

The cinematography is one of the stand-out aspects of this film. Every shot looks staged, as if they were from a typical fiction movie. There's a surprising amount of close-ups for a documentary. It was to the point that I didn't actually believe I was watching a documentary at first. I'm very impressed with the cinematography - shout-out to David Bolen, the cinematographer.

There is a lot to learn from this film. Life is full of pain and struggles; and, as sad as it may sound, that's inescapable. It's impossible to always be happy, even in the utopic Disney World for Retirees.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. It comes out January 15, 2021.

Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17
Runtime: 45 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 12-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


HUNGER WARD
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
HUNGER WARD
101 STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 16-18
Description - HUNGER WARD is the final documentary in a trilogy of films about the global refugee crisis. Filmed from inside two of the most active therapeutic feeding centers in Yemen, HUNGER WARD documents two women health care workers fighting to thwart the spread of starvation against the backdrop of a forgotten war. The film provides an unflinching portrait of Dr. Aida Alsadeeq and Nurse Mekkia Mahdi as they try to save the lives of hunger-stricken children within a population on the brink of famine.

The project builds on Spin Film's previous two films: 50 Feet from Syria and LIFEBOAT. In 2016, 50 Feet from Syria was voted onto the Oscars Shortlist. In 2019, LIFEBOAT was nominated for an Academy Award. The film has also been nominated for a National Emmy for best Current Affairs Documentary. Together the first two films of the Refugee Trilogy have garnered dozens of international awards.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - While many films are created as a means to escape from everyday realities, revolutionary and inspiring filmmakers like Skye Fitzgerald create documentaries that shed light on the horrors of our world. Hunger Ward is an extraordinary short-form documentary that follows the daily tribulations of two astonishingly brave individuals working to combat the hunger crisis in Yemen. This film, painful at times, exemplifies the necessity of nonfiction storytelling in cinema, as it begs for assistance for this struggling nation.

The country of Yemen has experienced many hardships brought about by a multi-sided civil war, and the effects of these struggles are most strongly seen in the children of the nation. Due to the neighboring country's failure to act and Saudi Arabia's constant pressure on the country, Yemen is left helpless. With an embargo on all sea and land imports, the nation has limited access to necessities such as food and medicine. Two inspiring women in separate hunger wards, Dr. Aida Alsadeeq and nurse Mekkia Madhi reveal the bravery found in working to combat the worst humanitarian crisis in our modern world.

Academy and Emmy Award nominee Skye Fitzgerald knew that in order to show audiences the dire need for support in Yemen, he would need to show the beauty that once was there. Through incredible cinematography and camera work, and beautiful aerial shots, audiences see Yemen not as a third world country or charity case, but as a full-fledged country worthy and in need of support. By focusing specifically on certain families and healthcare heroes, Fitzgerald is able to establish a personal connection to each of his subjects, allowing all viewers to feel empathetic for everyone involved.

The message of this film is brought about by the simple question that director Skye Fitzgerald asked when starting the project: how can a child go hungry in 2020? Hunger Ward shows us just how far we have to go as a global society, and how our lawmakers must do better at providing aid to these nations. The short film can be hard to watch for some, as there are graphic videos of bombing sequences, as well as two scenes depicting the loss of a child.

I give Hunger Ward 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 16 and up. An Academy Award contender, this documentary is available at certain festivals worldwide. For more updates about where to watch and for info on how to help the hospitals featured in the film, please visit https://www.hungerward.org/

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 16-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


ALMOST PARADISE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ALMOST PARADISE
AMAZON PRIME Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 11-18
Description - A former US DEA agent is forced into early retirement and runs a gift shop in the Philippines. Although he tries to leave his past behind him and lead a peaceful life, he is constantly being pulled back into a world of dangerous people and deadly situations.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The chilling and suspenseful action-filled show Almost Paradise manages to keep the viewer at the edge of their seat and kept me there until the credits rolled. One thing I love about the show is how convincing the special effects are, especially the gory makeup. It doesn't feel cheesy or unbelievable and actually shocked me the first time I watched it.

This series revolves around a retired FBI agent who solves crimes. These crimes take place on an island where he lives. He solves crime cases while also battling stress attacks and PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome). These cases can vary from murder to drug dealing to sex trafficking.

I love all of the characters on this show, but my favorite has to be Alex Walker (Christian Kane.) Alex is a complex character and is written in a smart way that adds to the story. Another excellent actor is Arthur Acu�a who plays Ernesto, one of the cops who assists Alex in solving cases. Arthur makes this character mysterious in a way that draws the viewer in. Almost Paradise does a lot of things well - the sets are eerie and pleasing to the eye, and they tell the story of what's going on, while adding a creepy touch. I also really like the screenwriting. It makes the show feel natural and realistic and makes you believe what the actors are saying. One of my favorite scenes is an exciting chase scene. Right when I was sure this scene would go one way, it unfolds in a totally different one.

The message of this show is the importance of justice, which is uplifting and inspiring. Every cop on this show has a strong sense of justice by risking their lives for others and showing empathy. Some things to look out for in this show are sexual jokes, adult themes, violence, blood/gore, and heavy emotional topics.

Overall, I give Almost Paradise 4 out of 5 stars. I loved this series. I highly recommend Almost Paradise for an age range of 11 to 18, plus adults. You can find Almost Paradise on YouTube, Google Play, and Amazon Prime.

Reviewed by Samantha B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Time to sit back and relax, because today we are talking about the new action-packed show, Almost Paradise! Almost Paradise has everything a crime show lover would enjoy, such as outstanding plot development and fantastic stage combat that makes the fight scenes look extremely real! Unfortunately, the show lacks a strong script and doesn't grab you as much as you might think a show like this would.

Almost Paradise follows a man named Alex Walker (Christian Kane) who is sidelined from being an agent because of health issues. Alex has to stay calm and make sure his heart rate doesn't go too high. He decides to go to an island and take a vacation, and that must be very calming for Alex right? Actually no! As much as Alex wants to have a calming vacation, he can't help but get involved in the local crime scene and start busting crime bosses. Alex has to navigate his way to keep his heart rate down and still manage to keep crime off the streets.

This film has amazing staged combat. I credit the training that Christian Kane (Alex Walker) did to make his character's fight scenes look as if they are real. The show's creator Dean Devlin delivers a show that is different from all the other crime TV shows and puts his own spin on it. Almost Paradise delivers much more than you think it might, but it clearly lacks a strong script. The dialogue is uninspired and basic; it doesn't leave you thinking about the show after it's over, which is a shame.

Along with fantastic stunts and punches, Almost Paradise brings a larger message and multiple themes for the viewers to resonate with. The big message is that, just because you might be restricted by something, find a way to get around it. Don't give up because you might have a minor issue in your way. The show also explores themes like recovery, friendship and perseverance.

Almost Paradise can be very intense at times. The show is rated PG, which I very much disagree with. Some episodes deal with very surreal topics that even I, as a 14-year-old had a hard time watching. Yes the show can be funny and light-hearted at times, but it gets very dark at others. Therefore, I give Almost Paradise 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 14 to 18, plus adults. If you are under the age of 13 I definitely recommend watching this with a parent or guardian. You can watch Almost Paradise online now, so make sure to check it out!

By Jude A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 11-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


APOLLO 11: QUARANTINE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
APOLLO 11: QUARANTINE
NEON Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 11-18
Description - Apollo 11 astronauts spend three weeks in medical quarantine after safely returning to Earth in the summer of 1969.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - See youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Apollo 11: Quarantine is a uniquely relatable found-footage style film that is sure to allure space fans, history buffs and everyone else, too! The creators of this film have pieced together parts of old footage from newsfeeds and other sources to tell a grand story of astronauts in quarantine.

Now, more about that story! The film follows the crew of the Apollo 11 spaceflight that first landed humans on the moon (Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins) in their 21-day quarantine in the summer of 1969. Scientists weren't sure if they had made contact (and maybe even brought back) dangerous lunar microorganisms like bacteria, so the astronauts had to be contained and swabbed and scrubbed down regularly. But the Apollo 11 crew weren't as isolated as you'd think: they kept contact with the outside world through a pane of thick glass. This film shows the activities that went on during those 21 days and how much patience and emotional strength the astronauts had to show; it took a lot of resilience for the roving moon-explorers, but they pulled through!

To the fun stuff, now! Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins are the lead "characters" in the film. Todd Douglas Miller brilliantly edited together all of the individual incredible clips. Besides the editing, the music and small intercut scenes of footage shot in the 21st century both help create the ambiance for the film. I also have to say that the audio work is quite interesting; I didn't think that audio from the late '60s was surround sound or stereo. I watch the film with headphones on and was surprised that the audio in parts of the film (like when the crew uses walkie-talkies) goes from one ear to the other. Quite modern for the mid-to-late 20th century!

Apollo 11: Quarantine promotes the message of resilience and sticking through anything that comes your way. The film shows exactly how difficult it was for the crew of Apollo 11 to be quarantined for 21 days, interacting with the outside world through a glass pane or capsule. But they pulled through, and President Gerald Ford congratulated them with a proud speech on Day 21 of their quarantine, the last day.

I give Apollo 11: Quarantine 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 11 to 18. Adults will enjoy this film as well. Apollo 11: Quarantine will be released exclusively in IMAX� on January 29, 2021, and on Premium On Demand on February 5, 2021.

Reviewed by Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Runtime: 30 minutes
KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 10-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: VIDEO


GO, DOG, GO!
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
GO, DOG, GO!
NETFLIX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 3-7
Description - Based on PD Eastman's best-selling, classic children's book (over 8 million copies sold), Go, Dog. Go! follows six-year-old Tag Barker on her adventures in the city of Pawston, a fun-loving community of dogs on the go. Tag is a skilled mechanic and loves anything that goes. With her ingenuity and creativity, Tag can go as far as any plan will take her with her best friend Scooch Pooch by her side.

Go, Dog, Go!

DreamWorks' 'Go, Dog, Go!' Speeds to Netflix Jan. 26, 2021
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The creative TV series Go, Dog. Go! based on the book by P.D Eastman is completely satisfying. Every element of traditional animated shows is used to create a brand new, originally entertaining series. With intriguing animation and impressive voice-over acting, Go, Dog, Go is a must-see for young viewers!

Each of the nine episodes follows Tag Barker (Michela Luci) in her adventures through Pawston with her friend Scooch Pooch (Callum Shoniker). Together, they solve problems and have fun. There are two individual stories per episode, with the same general characters. The antagonist is primarily Frank, (David Berni), who stands in the way of Tag and Scooch.

Throughout the series, I am impressed time after time with its amazing animation. While it is colorful and fun; it is also fairly realistic. The dogs look so real and cute, I want to hug them! Something that makes this show even more special is the creative way that it uses so many elements from P.D. Eastman's original book and creates a whole new world out of it. All of the main story parts are included and more are added such as a doorbell shop, a racecar track and so much more. All these locations and lots of extra events are important to the story. One of my favorite aspects of the film is when the dogs sing. It's very clever and funny. The creative story is amazing, but the acting is even better. With such cute, specific-to-character performances, I almost wondered if these characters are real! There is only one minor issue that most likely isn't noticeable to little kids - some of the episodes are repetitive. Most of the time, the series doesn't change the plot very much from one story to the next. That doesn't make much of a dent in my overall enjoyment of this series however.

The message that Tag, Scooch and all of their friends convey is that teamwork and kindness are best. They work together to problem solve and help out dogs around town. Sometimes there are additional themes for individual episodes.

I give Go, Dog. Go! 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 7. You can watch Go, Dog, Go on Netflix beginning Tuesday, January 26, 2021.

Reviewed by Kyla C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Yes! The classic book by P. D. Eastman is now an animated series. Go, Dog, Go! has such clever dialogue and references to the book, high quality animation and is very fun to watch.

This series is about a dog named Tag Barker (Michela Luci) and her adventures throughout her town, Pawston. There are big dogs, little dogs and even a dog party in a tree. On Tag's adventures, we meet her family and friends as well as new friends like Scooch Pooch and Gerald the Mail Dog as she helps to solve problems along the way.

This new series is based on P. D. Eastman book, which is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, so this story is not only relevant to the kids of today but to their parents as well. I grew up with this book; my brothers grew up with this book; and my dad grew up with this book. My whole family grew up enjoying this book! And this new series will not disappoint all of the Go, Dog, Go! lovers as there is a reference to almost every storyline in the book. Also, the characters' names are hilarious. Instead of grandpa it's grandpaw and there is a group of singing dogs called the Barkapellas. The animation is so colorful as there are red dogs, blue dogs, green dogs, yellow dogs, purple dogs, and, pretty much, dogs of every color of the rainbow. I also enjoy seeing a town full of dogs riding bikes, trikes, blimps, boats and cars. My favorite voice actress is Michela Luci, who plays Tag, because she brings so much energy to the role.

There are many positive messages throughout the show, like helping others, perseverance and friendship.

I give Go, Dog, Go! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 10. Adults will love all of the references to the book. This show comes out on Netflix January 26, 2021.

Reviewed by Katherine Schell, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 3-8
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


FINDING 'OHANA
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
FINDING 'OHANA
NETFLIX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10 - 18
Description - A summer in rural O'ahu takes an exciting turn for two Brooklyn-raised siblings when a journal pointing to long-lost treasure sets them on an epic adventure with new friends, and leads them to reconnect with their Hawaiian heritage.
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KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The upcoming Netflix film Finding 'Ohana, by Jude Weng, is absorbing, hilarious and intriguing. I truly enjoyed watching the main character Pili (Kea Peahu) evolve throughout the film as she learns more about her heritage and the land. As a young viewer, I found it fascinating that this film points out one of many Hawaiian legends - the Night Marchers - which are the ghosts of ancient Hawaiian warriors.

This film follows two Brooklyn-raised siblings, as their life takes an unexpected turn as they spend the summer in O'ahu. At the beginning of their O'ahu summer, Pili finds an old, dusty journal with notes from an old pirate and the pirate's crew. After learning more about the pirate's connection to the long-lost gold from her grandfather Kimo (Branscombe Richmond), Pili takes on the challenge of finding the gold with her new friend Casper (Owen Vaccaro), which leads to her older brother Ioane (Alex Iono) and Casper's "older sister" Hana (Lindsay Watson) following the journey.

I was super impressed by all of the acting talent, especially Kea Peahu, who plays the protagonist Pili. Considering that this is her first feature film, that is even more impressive. I spoke with her recently about that and she shared, "I have many similarities to Pili, which helped improve my performance. I was able to connect with my ohana (family) just like Pili does in the film." Along with that, Owen Vaccaro (Daddy's Home; Daddy's Home 2) surpassed all my expectations with his performance.

My favorite parts about Finding 'Ohana are the real-world concepts such as the Hawaiian legends that lead Pili on her journey to find the treasure. Many films are based around myths of various cultures. However, in this film, you see how the Hawaiian legend comes to life in a youth and family-friendly way. I loved seeing the character development of each character and seeing them change by the end of the film when they become family (ohana) because of the experiences they have shared.

This film promotes positive social behaviors and shows how important it is to treat others respectfully. What I took away from this film is to always treat others the way you want to be treated, and that ohana (family) is not always blood; family is those who love and support you, whether you are related or not.

I give Finding 'Ohana 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. It debuts on Netflix Jan. 29, 2021. Be sure to check it out!

Reviewed by Nathalia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Families do not always bond nicely. In Finding 'Ohana, two siblings from New York embark on an adventure in O'ahu, Hawaii and try to connect with each other and with their Hawaiian heritage while they discover the mysteries of the island. This movie is about traditions, embracing your culture and respect.

The film has the perfect adventure spirit. Pili (Kea Peahu), a 12-year-old girl and her brother Ione (Alex Aiono) are always fighting. With their mom, they go to their native island, O'ahu, to visit their grandfather whose health is delicate. The mom, Leilani (Kelly Hu), doesn't get along with her family all that well. It's as if all these different generations are colliding, but through the unusual experiences and with help from new friends, they discover the greatest treasure - the love of family (ohana).

The movie mixes fantasy and adventure, a little romance, humor and drama in a fun way. This story remind of Goonies and has some elements from the classic 80s films like Indiana Jones, but deals with contemporary subjects of identity and multi-cultural issues. The scenes were filmed on various locations on O'ahu, which gives the film a very authentic tone. The sightseers are beautiful and there is some lovely underwater photography. The story is entertaining and keeps you focused most of the time. Some visual effects and practical sets are not all that impressive, but the performances are very good and make you connect with the characters and what they are going through. Kea Peahu, who plays Pili in her film debut, is amazing in the leading role. I love the songs in the soundtrack and the way the music is incorporated into the storyline. I also love that the film reinforces the importance of a simple life; sometimes we focus on our dreams and goals; we forget about the beauty that is in front of us in our everyday life.

The message of the film is that love of family is unconditional despite our differences.

I give Finding 'Ohana 4 out of 5 starts and recommended for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. Finding 'Ohana premieres January 29, 2021 on Netflix.

By Zoe C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

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


FLOOGALS: SEASON ONE
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
FLOOGALS: SEASON ONE
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DVD, AGES 2-6
Description - Join the Floogals on a mission of discovery as they explore Earth and the funny hoomans who live there! The show centers on three three-inch tall extraterrestrials called Floogals who have come to Earth to study its inhabitants. Upon landing, a human boy, thinking their spaceship is a toy, hangs their craft onto the ceiling of his bedroom. The Floogals, however, don't seem to mind as they carry on with their studying.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The DVD Floogals: Season One is a collection of episodes from the animated children's TV show that teaches kids about new things in a fun way. The characters are colorful and fun, and they never run out of new things to explore. This show is entertaining and interesting, which is perfect for a younger audience.

The show is about tiny aliens named Fleeker, Flo and Boomer who are from the planet Floog. After coming to Earth, they observe and learn new things every day. As the aliens roam around the "hoomans'' house, they learn about things that people use, such as a balloon, flashlight, and a trumpet. After the aliens are done investigating and learning all about the new objects, they send a report back to their home planet Floog. If the other aliens like their report, the aliens get a sticker. The aliens go to sleep and get ready to learn something new the next day.

The theme song of the show is very catchy. I could see myself listening to it multiple times. My favorite character is Boomer, voiced by Hugo Harold-Harrison, because he is funny, caring and kind of silly and that makes him even more funny. For example, at the end of each episode, after the aliens send their report to Floog, Boomer either makes a joke or does something funny to make the audience laugh. The storylines are easy to follow because they help kids learn about basic things, such as a doll, a cast, and a tent. Also, the aliens don't use big words; they use words that young children will know and understand. Many animated kids' shows don't show a contrast between cartoons and humans, so that part is pretty cool.

The message of Floogals is you can learn something new with everything you do. There is always a way to learn something, even if you don't notice it. This is totally kid-friendly.

Floogals: Season One is a great DVD to watch! I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 6. The DVD releases on January 19, 2021. Go check it out!

Reviewed by Giana N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

The DVD Floogals: Season One is a collection of episodes from the fantastic animated TV show Floogals. It is perfect for young children with its fun, playful storyline. It's very kid-friendly and enjoyable for other family members to watch as well. I like how short each episode is. Parents don't want their young children watching screens all day, and these short episodes combat that problem.

The storyline follows the Floogals, a team of intergalactic alien explorers named Captain Fleeker, Junior Boomer and First Officer Flo, who travel to Earth to learn more about its wonders. In each episode, the Floogals find different objects that the "hoomans" use, learn more about them and report back to their planet.

This voice-acting in this show is very enjoyable. Ramus Hardiker (Captain Fleeker), Jules de Jongh (First Officer Flo) and Hugo Harold-Harrison (Junior Boomer) perfectly portray explorer aliens on a whole new planet. Their voice-acting really brings life to the characters in this show. Also, I love the animation, which is full of bright colors and perfect for young kids. Lastly, I love the theme song. It's really catchy and has a memorable tune.

I think the message of this film about exploring. The show really encourages kids to ask questions and be curious.

I rate Floogals: Season One 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 4 to 6. This DVD is available January 19, 2021.

Reviewed by Kayla A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

Floogals: Season One is a fun DVD because of the mixed animation and live action. This is something unique that sets Floogals apart from other kids' shows. I like that the show gives each floogal a different personality instead of making them all the same. I also can't help but notice their costumes are all different. This is good because, in some shows it is really hard to distinguish the characters. This allows kids to pick their favorite floogal and associate that floogal with a color or look.

The story is about four-inch curious aliens named Floogals. The Floogals explore earth as their first mission from their home planet. The show focuses on the floogals' visit to earth and the many firsts they experience in our human world. While each episode ends with a new floogal experience, there is one thing that really bothered me, they don't show the humans. It would have been interesting to see how the Floogals actually viewed humans.

The lead characters in Floogals are Captain Fleeker, played by Rasmus Hardiker; Boomer, played by Huge Harold Harrison; and Flo, played by Jules de Jongh. The voice-over actors excel at bringing their characters to life. One of the things that stood out to me is how unique the designs of the characters are. They are colorful and got my attention. I'm so glad they didn't make this show live action, because they could never look as good as they do in animation. Plus, it's pretty hard to make four-inch aliens fit in with actual people. My favorite character is Boomer, because out of all of them, he made me laugh the most. He's the silly one of the group. One fun part of Floogals is when I realized the characters have personalities that I've seen before on other kids' shows. This sticks true to this type of kids' show genre.

The message of this show is: if you explore you can learn something new that you never knew about. Plus it's okay to make mistakes. They help you learn as you explore and help you grow. This is a positive message for kids that are very impressionable to see and hear, especially because kids often repeat behaviors that they see.

I give Floogals: Season One 3 out 5 stars and recommend this DVD for ages 3 to 6. Parents might enjoy watching it with their kids. Floogals: Season One is available on DVD now. Look for it!

By Ayden P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-6
Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99
Media: CDROM
      This title is available for purchase from Amazon.com


JURASSIC WORLD: CAMP CRETACEOUS, SEASON 2
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
JURASSIC WORLD: CAMP CRETACEOUS, SEASON 2
NETFLIX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 8-18
Description - Six teens attending an adventure camp on the opposite side of Isla Nublar must band together to survive when dinosaurs wreak havoc on the island.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous Season 2 is an exciting, action-packed, at times funny, animated TV series on Netflix! The series continues building upon the beloved Jurassic World and Jurassic Park franchise. If you are fascinated by dinosaurs (like I am) and you like adventure, you should definitely watch this show. Additionally, if you like the other Jurassic Park or Jurassic World movies, I bet you will love this series. I really enjoyed it!

The story is about six teenagers, Darius (Paul-Mik�l Williams), Brooklyn (Jenna Ortega), Kenji (Ryan Potter), Ben (Sean Giambrone), Yaz (Kausar Mohammed) and Sammy (Raini Rodriguez) who go together to a camp in Jurassic World, called Camp Cretaceous. They have a fun time at the camp, but then all of a sudden all the dinosaurs living in Jurassic World become loose! The teenagers then need to figure out how to survive on an island with wild and crazy dinosaurs that attack the campers. Even though this may sound a little scary, there is humor throughout the episode. There are moments that had me laughing such as when stuff breaks that isn't supposed to, or when the characters say funny things.

In every episode of this series, there are new dinosaurs that pop into the show. The special effects surrounding these dinosaurs are awesome and seem incredibly realistic. The dinosaurs actually seem like they are alive. There is a T-Rex, Raptor, Mosasaurus, Compy, Stegosaurus and other prehistoric creatures. The dinosaurs are, by far, my favorite part of the show. The teenage characters all have different types of traits including: athletic, funny, scared of everything, famous, rich and loving dinosaurs. I enjoyed watching how they all end up working together as a team during the course of the series.

The primary message of the series is about teamwork and collaboration. The characters all end up working as a team.< p>I give Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. You can find Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous Season 2 on Netflix, available January 22, 2021.

By Conrad W., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

I love Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous Season 2--it's so interesting, and it grabs your attention so well! I also like that season 2 has more action than season 1, which kept me watching the whole time.

Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous, Season 2 is an American animated, science-fiction adventure series based on the multi-billionaire Jurassic Park franchise. This awesome series has eight episodes with a duration of approximately 25 minutes each. The computer animation and graphics are neat, and the colorful backgrounds attract the viewer's attention. The voiceovers suit each character, and the music played on every scene is suitable to what is going on. My favorite part is when Darius has a flashback about how he got the dinosaur tooth necklace.

This season starts with a boy named Darius (Paul-Mik�l Williams) who wants to go to Camp Cretaceous like he and his dad planned. Sadly, his dad dies and ever since then Darius has been playing a VR game because the game's winner gets Camp Cretaceous tickets. No one has beat the game yet, until Darius does, and he attends Camp Cretaceous in honor of his dad. This is big for Darius because he is a huge dino nerd and knows so many facts and has dino toys all over his room. He arrives at Camp Cretaceous and meets five other kids: Brooklyn (Jenna Ortega), a famous travel vlogger; Ben (Sean Giambrone), who is scared of everything and a germophobe; Kenji (Ryan Potter), a rich ungrateful kid who likes attention and brags about going to the park six gazillion times. The other kids include Yasmina (Kausar Mohammed), an athlete who sits alone and Sammy (Raini Rodriguez), who likes to talk a lot and makes friends with everyone. All six of the kids embark on a new adventure in every episode.

There are many morals in season 2, but teamwork stands out the most. In season 1, the kids need to find people that work at the camp so they can get saved and, in that process, they work together very well. In season 2, they need to find a beacon and also watch out for a T-rex and its lair. They work together using walkie-talkies.

I'd give Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous, Season 2, 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18 plus adults and to whomever is a dinosaur or Jurassic Park fan. Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous, Season 2 comes out on January 22, 2021, on Netflix.

By Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

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


CHARLIE'S COLORFORMS CITY: MEET CHARLIE!
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
CHARLIE'S COLORFORMS CITY: MEET CHARLIE!
N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DVD, AGES 2-6
Description - In CHARLIE'S COLORFORMS CITY, Charlie goes on shape-filled adventures he creates using his big imagination.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie is an engaging and hilarious DVD comprised of episodes from the TV series! This show has so many great messages that both young and old need to hear. Also, it awakens imagination and creativity.

Charlie's Colorforms City follows Charlie (Jacob Soley) and his friends Violet (Saara Chaudry) and Red (Tyler Barish) through a series of adventures in the engaging form of a story where the audience are the storytellers. Each adventure or episode has its own conflicts and resolutions, but most importantly fun.

Jacob Soley has an amazing voice which perfectly fits Charlie's character. The opening theme music by Voodoo Highway Music and Post, performed by Niiko Soul is undeniably the best I've heard for a children's television series; it's extremely catchy and dance worthy. The animation in this series is great. However, as most of the characters are 3D shaped, the 2D animated backgrounds look a bit out of place. The different settings such as outer space, underwater and the jungle are very colorful and full of detail. Although this show is targeted at younger audiences it teaches complex subjects such as geometry, entrepreneurship, various emotions, hygiene and weather, just to name a few. Angela Santomero, the creator of this show is to be applauded for her ideas of creating such amazing themes and messages, while still making it fun. The best episode is "Rock Star Charlie," where Charlie and his friends create a rock band and dance and sing.

Do you sometimes feel afraid when trouble arises because you don't know the outcome? "Not if we are the one's telling the story!" Charlie explains that we are the storytellers of our own story, or, in this case, our lives. So, when our story gets sticky and stickier, we can create a fun plot twist and change our story to the way we would like it.

Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie gets 4 out of 5 stars and I recommend it for ages 2 to 7. It is available on DVD January 19, 2021. Look for it!

By Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I especially love the DVD Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie because of the interactive adventures! This show promotes imagination, games, colors, shapes and much more.

The storyline is about Charlie (Jacob Soley) who takes you on a whimsical adventure while introducing colors, shapes, sizes and all you need to know about creativity. Throughout the story Charlie also introduces other friends such as Violet (Saara Chaudry) and Red (Tyler Barish). With your help, you and Charlie get to create new stories filled with imagination.

I enjoyed the fun personalities of all the characters and the way they are so inclusive. Charlie loves to interact with his friends and the viewers, which keeps the audience engaged. I also got to build new inventions and talk with Charlie. Each new shape-filled story is repetitive enough to promote fun learning. My favorite episode is the first one, "Charlie the Pancake Chef," because it involves problem solving skills. Each new short story promotes behaviors of kindness and sharing. This series is perfect for a good role modeling. The backgrounds in the show are bright and whimsical. There are many areas where one can participate and spot out shapes. I really enjoyed the catchy and bubbly introduction in each new short story. There are four segments with two short stories ranging from ten to fifteen minutes in each episode. An entire episode is around twenty minutes long. This is perfect for the intended audience. I love the way that Charlie's Colorforms City can help kids learn so much about the world around them.

I got lots of messages from the show, although the one that keeps going with the theme is to stay active and creative. I really like how this DVD is trying to encourage kids to use their imagination more. With each colorful adventure they will have loads of fun.

I give Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie 5 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 6. I also think that this would be great for families to watch together.

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

Are you ready for a fun filled, colorful, interactive adventure? Then you have to check out Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie In this animated series, your creative imagination will flourish. So, buckle up and get ready for a fantastic animated adventure that's both fun and educational for the whole family.

Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie is all about going on unpredictable, interactive, storytelling adventures in Colorforms City with Charlie and his best friends, Red and Violet. Every adventure is different and unique, so you never know what to expect. Charlie is always shaking things up. With Charlie's imagination leading the way, you'll be inspired to create colorful and magical stories, while developing your critical thinking skills.

The cast is filled with many talented actors. Jacob Soley (Charlie), Tyler Barish (Red) and Saara Chaudry (Violet) all connect with their characters throughout this series and deliver awesome performances. I love the colorful animation and music. Sometimes, I just jumped to my feet and start dancing. My favorite part is when Charlie uses his imagination to build a rocket ship using different shapes, sizes and colors to travel to outer space in order to send his friend home. And, I absolutely love the part, when he can't decide which pet to have; so his solution is to build one mega-super pet by using various shapes along with one trait from each animal he wants.

The intent of this DVD is to inspire kids to learn about different colors, shapes and sizes as well as work on their critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Charlie also teaches friendship skills such as being kind, considerate, respectful, supportive and being an active listener. I wish I lived in Colorforms City, don't you?

I highly recommend Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie for ages 2 to 6 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. This DVD is available January 19, 2021. Look for it, you've got a great story to create!

By Ella M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

The Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie DVD is a compilation of episodes from the educational TV series that will have kids laughing and learning the whole time! It combines shapes, colors, creativity and music to entertain watchers and teach them how to problem-solve and create stories. This is a show with a lot of concepts that are easy to understand.

Charlie's Colorforms City is about Charlie, a very silly and creative friend. Charlie invented Colorforms City from his imagination. It is a city full of colors and shapes that can make anything you dream of. From making pancakes to finding the end of a rainbow, Charlie and his best friends Violet and Red go on CRAZY story quests and solve the problems that get in their way.

This series has many components that make it as good as it is - for one, the musical part. I love performing and music. Music is always around me. This show includes upbeat songs and background music. For example, the theme song is SO catchy, explains what the show is about, and, by the way, has impressive vocals. Something else I noticed with this series are the storylines. They are easy to follow and are entertaining. They're not too complex but they also get you thinking. That's a nice balance, so props to the creator, Angela Santomero, and the writers of the show. Like a lot of shows for young kids, Charlie's Colorforms City has "call and response." I love how this element is used in this show. It allows kids to be included in the story. When I was watching this I thought: "Wow! These characters sound excited!" It's all thanks to the voice actors. The actor who plays Charlie, Jacob Soley, really stands out to me. He is always enthusiastic and caught my attention immediately. My favorite episodes of this series so far are "Charlie the Pancake Chef" and "Adventure Charlie." They are intriguing and they have the best storylines. Who doesn't love pancakes and a little adventure?!

The messages of Charlie's Colorforms City are: creativity can lead you anywhere, and learning can be fun! Whenever the characters run into a problem, they use creativity and imagination to solve them. There is nothing inappropriate in this show and it is kid-friendly.

Overall, Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie is an incredible DVD for kids! With it being fun and educational, I rate it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 6. It's also a good series for parents to watch with their kids! The DVD releases nationwide January 19, 2021. Check it out, I'm sure you will enjoy it.

By Maica N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

From the series we all know and love comes Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie. I was entertained and delighted with this spectacular DVD. Follow along with me, so I can show you how this story provides color and brightness in a time like this when we are surrounded by gray darkness.

Charlie's Colorforms City: Meet Charlie is an eight episode DVD. The episodes consist of Charlie the Pancake Chef, Rock Star Charlie, Racer Charlie, Adventurer Charlie, Starry Charlie, Birthday Charlie, Knight Charlie and Charlie's Pet. Each episode tells a fun and uplifting story about our the character, Charlie, trying new things. From adventuring to the other end of the rainbow, to eating a pancake, Charlie's stories make us smile and laugh along with him. Watch to see how Charlie and his friends use their imaginations to create their own worlds from stories.

When I watched Charlie's Colorform City: Meet Charlie, something I noticed right away was how wonderful this show can be for kids who are still learning about shapes and colors. This show teaches them about those things in a fun way, where they can use their imaginations. The show encourages creativity in a way that is different from other kids' shows. Charlie creates a city out of his imagination and the possibilities are endless. Kids should be learning from a young age that imagination is the key to following your dreams. Charlie's Colorforms City demonstrates that by making wonderful stories and taking you on his adventures. Another thing I like is the design of the show's animation. The bold colors and easy shapes of buildings such make it appeal to the target audience. For example, Charlie's whole neighborhood is filled with light blues, purples and greens. Young children will be drawn into this fabulous world of neon colors and hexagons.

The message of this show is to use your imagination to create wonderful things. Kids love to imagine things and when Charlie creates Colorforms City, he shows the audience how to put your mind to something and make it happen.

I give Charlie's Colorform City: Meet Charlie 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 11. This DVD is available January 19, 2021.

By Allison B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age, 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 2-6
Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99
Media: CDROM


BLIZZARD OF SOULS
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
BLIZZARD OF SOULS
101 STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FOREIGN FEATURE, AGES 14-18
Description - Based on true events and the novel by Aleksandrs Grins, which was forbidden in the USSR, the film follows a coming-of-age story of a sixteen-year-old Arthur. After the loss of his mother, he enlists to fight in WWI with dreams of becoming a hero, but after surviving the brutalities of trench warfare and the loss of his family, he wonders if his efforts in battle were futile and if hope is only to be found in rebuilding a family and a home as Latvia itself is born from the atrocities of war.

BLIZZARD OF SOULS was directed by Dzintars Dreibergs and written by Dreibergs and Boriss Frumins. The film was produced by Inga Pranevska and Dzintars Dreibergs for KULTFILMA, and associate produced by Gatis Sniedzin�. Ilona Bi vska serves as International Producer. It was edited by Gatis Belogrudovs and composed by Lolita Ritmanis.
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KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A cinematic masterpiece and the Oscar submission from the Baltic nation of Latvia, Blizzard of Souls will take you through a rollercoaster of emotions while providing you with a thorough history lesson! With echoes of 1917, Blizzard of Souls has masterful editing and cinematography, incredible sets and locations, and a talented cast, but falls a bit short on explaining major events in the First World War.

KULTFILMA took inspiration from true events and the novel by Grins to create Blizzard of Souls, which follows a teenage boy named Arturs Vanags in Russian-controlled Latvia (around the 1910s). Arturs' father was a highly decorated commander of a regiment of the Latvian army, and his brother Edgars is focused on carrying on that legacy. He's not exactly a fighter, but when his mother is killed by the Germans, Arturs, his brother, and his father conscript in the national Latvian Riflemen battalions of the Imperial Russian army in hopes of getting revenge and finding glory. He experiences many loves and losses in battle, after which he, among other soldiers, grows weary of the Tsarist cause and feels forgotten. Arturs must decide whether to stay with his regiment or defect and join his comrades in fighting the Latvian War of Independence and start his life all over again. As you can see, there's a lot happening in the film, and it's an intriguing plotline. Though I am a history buff, I'm not at the top of my game when it comes to Latvian war history, so I was really hoping for some time or battle markers; all of the battles seemed to blend together, save for the final conflict Arturs is involved in - the Battle of Cesis.

The cast and crew shine in this Baltic beauty. Oto Brantevics and Raimonds Celms play the brothers Vanags, with Oto as Arturs and Raimonds as Edgars. Raimond is a more experienced actor, but Oto really shines in his performance, with perfectly toned emotions and dialogue. Their on-screen father is played by Martins Vilsons, whose cerebral, tough personality gives way (at the perfect time) to paternal love. And the Vanags' friends in the film, Mikelsons and Konrads, are played by Jekabs Reinis and Gatis Gaga, who excel in their supporting roles with pointed humor and emulating the characters' focused, yet free personalities. Behind the scenes, Dzintars Dreibergs directed the film meticulously, with a keen eye on historical accuracy and believability. The music in the film, which majestically introduces and drives the action in each scene, was composed by Lolita Ritmanis. The soundtrack is definitely one of my favorite parts of the film. Another beautiful element of Blizzard of Souls is the cinematography by Valdis Celmin�; viewers can tell that each shot was thoughtfully planned out. There is a large part of one battle sequence that was shot and edited in one take, which really helps the speed of the film.

The message of Blizzard of Souls is one of growth; Arturs grows from a young boy to a mature hero throughout this film and has to make many tough decisions along the way. It's a positive and relatable message, as we all grow as people throughout our lives. There are some scenes for parents to watch out for though; there's a lot of blood and gore, some nudity and profanity (given the culture of trench warfare).

I give Blizzard of Souls 5 stars out of 5 and recommend it for ages 14 to 18. Adults will enjoy this film as well. Blizzard of Souls is out in theatres and on DVD now!

Reviewed by Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 14-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Web Series


MARKSMAN, THE
KIDS FIRST QUALIFIED ENDORSEMENT
MARKSMAN, THE
OPEN ROAD PRODUCTIONS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 13-18
Description - A rancher on the Arizona border becomes the unlikely defender of a young Mexican boy desperately fleeing the cartel assassins who've pursued him into the U.S.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Marksman is a slower-paced action film set on the road from Texas to Chicago. The film stars Liam Neeson as Jim, a retiree who's seen better days. There is a strong action storyline but those expecting a shoot-em-up adrenaline rush may want to look elsewhere.

Jim's wife has passed away, his finances gutted by the cost of her medical bills, and his decaying ranch adjoining the border to Mexico is under threat since he can't keep up with his rent. Now all he's got is his loyal canine companion and a few days left with his property. On a drive surveying his land, Jim finds a boy named Miguel and his mother Rosa, crossing the border. Members of a drug cartel are hot on their trail, eager to capture the mother and son. A shootout between Jim and their pursuers occurs and Rosa is mortally wounded. As she passes away, Jim makes a promise to get Miguel to their family in Chicago where he'll be safe.

The Marksman is a conundrum as an action movie - as for action, it's sparse, save for a few shootouts here and there where Neeson's character gets a chance to live up to his Marksman moniker. When you hear Liam Neeson and action movie within the same breath, you picture Neeson defiantly doling out revenge to those who have wronged him and the people he cares about, which to some extent is what The Marksman becomes. But it plods along its course, steeping you in the everyday life of Neesons' Jim, before putting into perspective the predicament Miguel faces from the cartel members who killed his mother.

Jim's encounters with the cartel is only mildly suspenseful. So much of The Marksman doesn't fully develop Miguel and Jim's dynamic, either. These characters spend so much time together, but, by the end, they only manage to get each other where they need to go, and nothing more. There's humanity, but there's no spark to it. I don't fault the performances, as much as I do a script with not enough meaningful moments for the central pair's bond to supplant itself deeply in the fabric of the movie.

I give The Marksman 2 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18 for some mild violence and the killing of a dog. The Marksman comes out in theaters on January 15, 2020.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, ages 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 13-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


WANDAVISION
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
WANDAVISION
DISNEY CHANNEL Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: SERIES,K AGES 12-18
Description - Blends the style of classic sitcoms with the MCU in which Wanda Maximoff and Vision -two super-powered beings living their ideal suburban lives-begin to suspect that everything is not as it seems.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Marvel has once again delivered with WandaVision! This show has many unique elements like the different time periods of the episodes, and it ties into the Avengers storyline we all know and love. Keep your eyes peeled, because there are Easter eggs everywhere!

WandaVision follows Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) in this sitcom world Wanda has created. Each episode varies in style from classic shows like I Love Lucy to The Brady Bunch. While the two superheroes live their urban life, we see glitches in Maximoff's reality bubble. This show will lead into the third installment of the MCU Spider-Man series and a sequel to Dr.Strange. As Wanda (aka Scarlet Witch) opens up the multiverse, Strange is left to clean up her mess.

Kudos to executive producer Kevin Feige for creating a show based on Scarlet Witch and Vision which is so unique but still stays true to its comic book roots. In the comics, Wanda goes mad, and ends up opening the multiverse. In WandaVision, we see this perfect bubble she has created and how it starts to deteriorate. Also true to the books, Vision and Maximoff share twins who also blossom into superheroes themselves, Thomas and William, aka Speed and Wiccan. In the comics, they form a fraction of the new Avengers team. Wanda has her own comic book series which include all of these adventures. Scarlet Witch has always been a role model for me since seeing Avengers: Age Of Ultron. Now that she has her own series, many girls around the world will grow up with her and look up to her just as I did.

The theme of the series is about reminiscing highlights of classic television. In the episodes, the range of classic show styles range from The Brady Bunch to Full House. In this series, we have modern day comedy with the over-the-top acting and era-appropriate wardrobe. At times, it's easy to forget we're watching a Marvel show, and think we're watching an episode of one of our favorite childhood shows. But then there are the strings that pull the viewer back to reality and notice the bigger picture. WandaVision is wonderful for anyone who's an MCU fan or someone who enjoys the nostalgia of sitcom memories.

I give WandaVision 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18 plus adults. It premieres on Disney+ January 15, 2020.

Reviewed by Heather S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

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


BLIZZARD OF SOULS
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
BLIZZARD OF SOULS
KULTFILMA
Series: FOREIGN FEATURE, AGES 14-18
Description - Based on true events and the novel by Aleksandrs Grins, which was forbidden in the USSR, the film follows a coming-of-age story of a sixteen-year-old Arthur. After the loss of his mother, he enlists to fight in WWI with dreams of becoming a hero, but after surviving the brutalities of trench warfare and the loss of his family, he wonders if his efforts in battle were futile and if hope is only to be found in rebuilding a family and a home as Latvia itself is born from the atrocities of war.

BLIZZARD OF SOULS was directed by Dzintars Dreibergs and written by Dreibergs and Boriss Frumins. The film was produced by Inga Pranevska and Dzintars Dreibergs for KULTFILMA, and associate produced by Gatis Sniedzin�. Ilona Bi vska serves as International Producer. It was edited by Gatis Belogrudovs and composed by Lolita Ritmanis.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A cinematic masterpiece and the Oscar submission from the Baltic nation of Latvia, Blizzard of Souls will take you through a rollercoaster of emotions while providing you with a thorough history lesson! With echoes of 1917, Blizzard of Souls has masterful editing and cinematography, incredible sets and locations, and a talented cast, but falls a bit short on explaining major events in the First World War.

KULTFILMA took inspiration from true events and the novel by Grins to create Blizzard of Souls, which follows a teenage boy named Arturs Vanags in Russian-controlled Latvia (around the 1910s). Arturs' father was a highly decorated commander of a regiment of the Latvian army, and his brother Edgars is focused on carrying on that legacy. He's not exactly a fighter, but when his mother is killed by the Germans, Arturs, his brother, and his father conscript in the national Latvian Riflemen battalions of the Imperial Russian army in hopes of getting revenge and finding glory. He experiences many loves and losses in battle, after which he, among other soldiers, grows weary of the Tsarist cause and feels forgotten. Arturs must decide whether to stay with his regiment or defect and join his comrades in fighting the Latvian War of Independence and start his life all over again. As you can see, there's a lot happening in the film, and it's an intriguing plotline. Though I am a history buff, I'm not at the top of my game when it comes to Latvian war history, so I was really hoping for some time or battle markers; all of the battles seemed to blend together, save for the final conflict Arturs is involved in - the Battle of Cesis.

The cast and crew shine in this Baltic beauty. Oto Brantevics and Raimonds Celms play the brothers Vanags, with Oto as Arturs and Raimonds as Edgars. Raimond is a more experienced actor, but Oto really shines in his performance, with perfectly toned emotions and dialogue. Their on-screen father is played by Martins Vilsons, whose cerebral, tough personality gives way (at the perfect time) to paternal love. And the Vanags' friends in the film, Mikelsons and Konrads, are played by Jekabs Reinis and Gatis Gaga, who excel in their supporting roles with pointed humor and emulating the characters' focused, yet free personalities. Behind the scenes, Dzintars Dreibergs directed the film meticulously, with a keen eye on historical accuracy and believability. The music in the film, which majestically introduces and drives the action in each scene, was composed by Lolita Ritmanis. The soundtrack is definitely one of my favorite parts of the film. Another beautiful element of Blizzard of Souls is the cinematography by Valdis Celmin�; viewers can tell that each shot was thoughtfully planned out. There is a large part of one battle sequence that was shot and edited in one take, which really helps the speed of the film.

The message of Blizzard of Souls is one of growth; Arturs grows from a young boy to a mature hero throughout this film and has to make many tough decisions along the way. It's a positive and relatable message, as we all grow as people throughout our lives. There are some scenes for parents to watch out for though; there's a lot of blood and gore, some nudity and profanity (given the culture of trench warfare).

I give Blizzard of Souls 5 stars out of 5 and recommend it for ages 14 to 18. Adults will enjoy this film as well. Blizzard of Souls is out in theatres and on DVD now!

Reviewed by Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 14-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


SECRETS OF SULPHUR SPRINGS
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SECRETS OF SULPHUR SPRINGS
DISNEY CHANNEL Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 7-16
Description - Set in the fictional titular town, Secrets of Sulphur Springs follows 12-year-old Griffin Campbell (Preston Oliver), whose world has been upended by his father's decision to move the family from Chicago to take over an abandoned hotel property, The Tremont. The Campbells, which includes Griffin's mother and his younger twin siblings, move into The Tremont in hopes of restoring it to the vacation destination it once was. But on his first day at his new school, Griffin hears rumors that the hotel is haunted by the ghost of Savannah (Elle Graham), a girl who disappeared decades ago. Soon, he and his new friend, Harper (Kyliegh Curran), discover a portal that allows them to travel back in time and uncover clues about the town's biggest mystery.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Disney's new TV series, Secrets of Sulphur Springs, dives deep into the mysteries of the unknown. The writers of the show weave a chilling tale of mystery and suspense that is brought to life by the cast. It is a show about new friendships and old secrets that will leave you on the edge of your seat, as it did me.

In Secrets of Sulphur Springs, a music-loving middle school boy named Griffin (Preston Oliver) moves into an abandoned hotel called The Tremont that his family plans to restore. The hotel is said to be haunted by a girl named Savannah (Elle Graham) who mysteriously disappeared 30 years ago. Griffin is missing his old town and old friends, but he finds a new friend named Harper (Kyliegh Curran). Together they are determined to uncover the truth about the hidden secrets of the hotel and find out what happened to Savannah.

One of my favorite scenes was when Griffin finds out that the old hotel is supposedly haunted--it is very fascinating to see his reaction when others tell him about Savannah haunting it. Equally interesting is to see how the others react to Griffin when they find out he is living at the old hotel. Griffin has younger twin siblings (Landon Gordon and Madeleine McGraw) and Harper has a brother (Bryant Tardy). The relationships that Griffin and Harper have with their siblings make the characters easy to relate to. The hotel set is decorated to portray that old, abandoned, rustic style which gives it a spooky appearance. The scenes where the set is dark also add to the eerie mood. The overall creepy setting makes the scenes more believable. The clothing choices are also well thought out, and perfect for the scenes.

The messages in this TV series are about building friendships and trust. Moving to a new town and having to make new friends at school is not always easy. Being a good friend means being kind, helpful and truthful. It also means working together. Trust is especially important because it's hard to earn back after it's lost. Parents may need to know that there are some suspenseful scenes that may be scary for younger viewers.

I give the new TV series, Secrets of Sulphur Springs, 5 out of 5 stars. Every scene kept me captivated and wanting more. I recommend this show for ages 7 to 16. Secrets of Sulphur Springs premieres on the Disney Channel January 15, 2021.

Reviewed by Carlee S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-16
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


STALLONE: FRANK, THAT IS
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
STALLONE: FRANK, THAT IS
BRANDED STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12-18
Description - Frank Stallone has seen it all. Frank Stallone has done it all. But, who is Frank Stallone? You know the name, now discover the Grammy and Golden Globe nominated singer, songwriter, musician and actor who has been entertaining audiences for over fifty years, all the while living in a giant shadow.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I'm super excited to share my thoughts about the documentary Stallone: Frank, That Is about a Hollywood star that has seen and done it all. I am talking about Frank Stallone who has spent nearly 50 years entertaining us with his platinum and gold albums and his amazing songs that have topped the music charts worldwide. His movie soundtracks for the most iconic films remain familiar throughout many generations. Singer, songwriter, musician and an actor...Frank Stallone is a package deal!

Stallone: Frank, That Is, a documentary written and directed by Derek Wayne Johnson, gives viewers an inside look into the life, career and struggles of a performer who has been dubbed "the most unknown famous entertainer in Hollywood." The film takes us behind the scenes as we follow Frank Stallone's professional journey told in words by Frank himself and people within his life who knew him best. Frank's accomplishments seem so remarkable, however for much of his life he has lived within the shadows of his more famous brother, Sylvester Stallone. Being "Rocky's Brother" may have been the largest hindrance to Frank's career, yet the most beneficial, because Frank's first real break within the industry came from his contributions to the Rocky Film Series. Frank Stallone's story is one of perseverance, inner strength, and a passion for the arts.

Frank's path has been filled with many opportunities and setbacks. Everyone, of course, has heard of Sylvester Stallone, yet, just as talented Frank has remained the Stallone underdog. I believe this documentary is exactly what Frank Stallone needs in order to share with the world exactly who he is, what he's done, and just how talented he actually is. Frank is exceptionally courageous in sharing his deepest inferior feelings and reveals to the world that there is room for more than one Stallone!

I truly enjoyed hearing from Mr. Stallone talk about how difficult his journey has been and how he hurdled so many obstacles to follow his dreams. As a young actor, I know firsthand how frustrating and disheartening it is to try to make it big within the talent world. I can relate to the look on Frank's face when as he discusses the setbacks he has faced. The industry is certainly competitive. What every entertainer needs is a will to push forward and a strong support base. The closest people in Frank Stallone's life offer words of encouragement to this amazing entertainer, which I believe is the message of this perseverant film; lots of support and self-confidence are needed if you are going to succeed within this terribly competitive niche. You need to navigate around your obstacles in order to reach your dreams.

I give Stallone: Frank, That Is 4 out of 5 stars and I recommend it to ages 12 to 18. Adults would especially love this documentary also, as many of them are quite familiar with Frank's music. This documentary will be released January 19, 2021. You can watch it on Video on Demand and Digital Screenings. This is an inspiring film that you don't want to miss.

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


WONDER WOMAN 1984
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
WONDER WOMAN 1984
WARNER BROS. PICTURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Rewind to the 1980s as Wonder Woman's next big screen adventure finds her facing two all-new foes: Max Lord and The Cheetah.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love Wonder Woman 1984! The costumes and sets are magnificent! And it has original music that fits perfectly with every scene!

Wonder Woman 1984 takes place in 1984 (hence the name), 66 years after the original movie, Wonder Woman. Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) is living among the mortals and working at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C. While there, the museum receives a mysterious stone that can grant one wish per person. Diana wishes to bring her long lost love, Steve Trevor (Chris Pine), back from the dead. Subsequently, she discovers the true power of the stone, and what would happen if it falls into the wrong hands.

I am happy to report that this movie has a "satisfying" ending, but no spoilers here. Knowing that this movie is a sequel, I would recommend watching the first one because it sets up Wonder Woman's backstory and other characters from the first movie. One thing that really stands out to me is the attention to detail. All of the costumes, sets and dialogue are very well executed and accurate to the 80s, or so my parents tell me! I especially like Wonder Woman's golden armor. Kudos to Lindy Hemming (costume designer) and Aline Bonetto (production designer) for the realistic look. All of the actors are strong, but the ones that stand out the most are Pedro Pascal and Kristen Wiig. Pedro Pascal (Maxwell Lord) really personifies the bad guy, a con man always wanting more. And as you watch Kristen Wiig's character, Barbara Minerva, evolve during the movie, you can see the contrast between her two personalities emerge.

The main messages of this movie are to be careful about what you wish for, truth overcomes lies, and of course, girl power. There is some bad language and a lot of fight scenes - it is, of course, a superhero movie. Wonder Woman is a great role model for all people as she inspires bravery, love, and heroism.

I give Wonder Woman 1984 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 10 to 18. Adults will enjoy it, too. Wonder Woman 1984 will be coming out in select theaters, IMAX, and HBO Max on December 25, 2020.

Reviewed by Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Wonder Woman 1984 is a fantasy action sequel to 2017's Wonder Woman, directed by Patty Jenkins and starring by Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Pedro Pascal and Kristen Wiig.

The movie opens with spectacular action scenes that take place in Themyscira, the ancient island where our favorite heroine comes from. We see Diana (Gal Gadot) at a very young age, competing in a warrior challenge and learning one of the most important lessons in life: the importance of being truthful.

Then, the film shifts to the 1980's where most of the movie takes place. Diana Prince is working at the Smithsonian Institute curating ancient artifacts, and one of them, recently discovered, is a very powerful stone that grants wishes. The stone will become a powerful and destructive weapon. Diane welcomes new worker Barbara Minerva who is shy and seems to be the opposite of Diana and who is investigating the stone.

The greatest assets in Wonder Woman 1984 are Maxwell Lord (Pedro Pascal) and Barbara Minerva (Kristen Wiig). Their characters are rich and enjoyable to watch, and they each portray a wide range of emotions. Gal Gadot as Diana Prince shines again in a role that seems tailor-made for her. She is the greatest princess: fierce, elegant and full of humanity.

The special effects are very well done, not perfect, but very impressive. There are a couple of sequences that are absolutely spectacular. The colors and costumes are vibrant, elegant and truthful to the era. And while the action scenes are exciting, the main story in general seems a little weak. I was on the edge of my seat at different times, but the story, at many moments is not that powerful. The music by Hans Zimmer is impeccable and adds a perfect emotional touch.

Wonder Woman 1984 is not as "wonderful" as the previous film, but is totally entertaining--and the messages are much needed in the world today: first, staying true to who we are. The other message is "be careful what we wish for" which, in this film, means it's good to remember that what we long for should be love and kindness.

I give Wonder Woman 1984 a 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommended to kids 10 and up (for some violent scenes) and adults as well. Wonder Woman 1984 opens on December 25, 2020, in theaters and on HBO Max.

By Zoe C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

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


NEWS OF THE WORLD
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
NEWS OF THE WORLD
UNIVERSAL STUDIOS - THEATRICAL DIVISION
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Five years after the end of the Civil War, Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd (Tom Hanks), a veteran of three wars, now moves from town to town as a non-fiction storyteller, sharing the news of presidents and queens, glorious feuds, devastating catastrophes, and gripping adventures from the far reaches of the globe. On the plains of Texas, he crosses paths with Johanna (Helena Zengel), a 10-year-old taken in by the Kiowa people six years earlier and raised as one of their own. Johanna, hostile to a world she's never experienced, is being returned to her biological aunt and uncle against her will. Kidd agrees to deliver the child where the law says she belongs. As they travel hundreds of miles into the unforgiving wilderness, the two will face tremendous challenges of both human and natural forces as they search for a place that either can call home.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - News of the World is a classical, character-driven Western amped up by the strength of its lead performances and cinematography.

Directed by Paul Greengrass, News of the World stars Tom Hanks as Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd, a veteran and former newspaper man. He charts course across a divided, post-Civil War America, going from town to town and doling out the news along with hope or despair depending on the headline. It's on these journeys that he finds a corpse in the woods and a toppled buggy, with a lone girl inside and some papers telling her story. She's Johanna, a German orphan adopted by Native Americans who slayed her parents and then taken from them. Kidd takes it upon himself to find her the home she's never really had, undeterred by the challenges ahead of them.

Tom Hanks is a gem, as usual. Hanks plays Kidd as flawed--we know he's done some things he's not proud of prior to the events of the film. He's atoning for those actions with an outstretched hand and caring heart for a person who needs it, a beacon of decency in a world that doesn't always adhere to that standard and the ideal stage for Hanks to work his magic upon. Fortunately, Hanks has a more than capable scene partner throughout in Helena Zengel, who plays Johanna. Her performance is mesmerizing and layered with nuance. She captures a character with a fiery spirit and worldly inner life.

The vistas and wide plains of a Western are catnip to any cinematographer. Dariuz Wolski creates a soft unease amid the ethereal hues of the frontier. There's an air of uncertainty that comes with their arduous journey that clouds over the majesty of the terrain. Wolski's cinematography basks in that majesty, but doesn't let it shake its focus on the characters at the center of it all. You become enveloped in the vastness of Captain Kidd and Johanna's travels, but fearful of what may lie ahead.

Greengrass's film seems primed for the big screen with its wealth of set pieces motivated by scale and environment; however, in the current times, a good portion of the people who watch this movie will watch it at home, and the movie seems as appropriate for that viewing experience with its stripped-down moments in between those grander ones.

I give News of the World 3 out of 5 stars and an age rating of 12 to 18 for some mild violence and moments of peril. You can see it in theaters December 25, 2020, and it will be available for home viewing within a month after its release.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

News of the World has a lot going for it and is full of creativity! While the concept of the film is original and full of potential, once the conflict is established the story doesn't quite live up to its promise.

The story centers on Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd (Tom Hanks), a Confederate Civil War veteran, and traveling news correspondent, who finds a young girl named Johanna (Helena Zengel) who was taken by Kiowa natives years ago. Kidd agrees to take the girl to her aunt and uncle, despite her protests in a language he does not speak. The pair faces many dangers along the way as they travel the American plains, including thieves, a dust storm, and a workers' riot, but through those challenges, they learn more about each other and how to work together.

The sets are impressive as well as the costumes. The actors are all dressed in outfits that really fit the time period and the region! I especially loved the scenes where Kidd and Johanna are traveling across the open desert because the filming locations are beautiful. My favorite part is how Kidd's and Johanna's relationship develops into one similar to a parent and a child, and the way it changes Kidd's perspective on family. Tom Hanks, as Kidd, is an outstanding actor, but I think his performance is somewhat negatively affected by uninteresting dialogue and character choices. In particular, Kidd's decision to rile the workers and fight against the mine owners while relaying the news seems a bit out of character, since Kidd is much calmer and lenient at the beginning of the movie. In fact, many scenes in the build-up of the main conflict of the story are a bit off-putting because they don't always match up with the familial and touching tone of the beginning and end of the film.

The message behind News of the World is that home is where the people you love are, and that family doesn't always have to be found in blood. The awkward and eventually affectionate interactions between Kidd and Johanna prove that any two people can find a connection. This film is rated PG-13, and parents should watch out for racism, death, implied child harassment, violence including the use of weapons.

I rate News of the World 2 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18. This film can be viewed in theaters on December 25, 2020.

Reviewed by Abigail L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

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


SOUL
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SOUL
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Joe is a middle-school band teacher whose life hasn't quite gone the way he expected. His true passion is jazz -- and he's good. But when he travels to another realm to help someone find their passion, he soon discovers what it means to have soul.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Soul is probably one of the most interesting films Pixar has made. It takes a very complex and existential idea about the meaning of life and expresses it in a unique, unexpected way.

The story follows a middle school music teacher named Joe Gardner, who wants nothing more than to play jazz on stage. When he finally has an opportunity to play, he ends up in an accident that separates his soul from his body and sends him to The Great Beyond. Joe teams up with an infant soul named 22, as they go on a journey to get Joe back to his body.

Unsurprisingly, this film looks great because it's an animated Pixar movie. Specifically, the birthplace of the souls, The Great Before, is very beautiful and ethereal-looking. Both The Great Beyond and The Great Before are interesting places visually and conceptually, but I felt like their potential was a bit wasted. I wanted to learn more about these locations and see more of them, but, alas, they're mostly forgotten about once they've served their purpose in the story.

Soul's greatest strength is its themes. I love the way this film subverts Joe's, and by extension the audience's, view on life and what it really means to be alive. It helps to have a great character like 22--who is so cynical and uninterested in human life--slowly learn to enjoy life in really subtle ways. Joe is great, but 22's character arc and her backstory really made me feel for her. She is such a well written character that I enjoyed watching her story play out. I appreciate this film attempting to tackle such a weighty subject in a way children could understand. It presents the concept of "the meaning of life" in a very mature yet still entertaining way.

I give Soul 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18. Soul releases on December 25, 2020.

Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17

With a charming jazz element and beautiful music, alluring storyline and remarkable voice work, Soul is perhaps one of Pixar's most profound films from all time.

This is the story of Joe, a middle school band teacher whose life hasn't gone the way he expects. His true passion is jazz and he is a very gifted piano player. He is not really happy with his non-exciting job and when he gets a gif with his favorite jazz musician, his life seems to experience a life changing experience. Unfortunately he is a little too excited and he ends up in a near death situation. Joe travels to another realm called "the great before." In this fantastical place, he has to help someone find their passion and he soon discovers what it means to have a soul. It feels like I'm giving away some stuff, but this movie is so complex and meaningful that is worth to watch everything that unfolds. While the storyline is very earnest and genuine it does get a little hectic. While this movie is animated and colorful, it turns complex and dark. I felt there is a bit too much going on at one point, but the story itself is very winsome.

While I'm not a huge fun of the storyline of this film, because it moves back and forth constantly and the concepts explored are too deep at times. Soul is not only for kids and I like that. Usually, most films such as Toy Story, Cars and Coco are targeted for young kids, Soul has a broader appeal and people of all ages will learn valuable lessons from it.

The music is unbelievable. I expected it would be primarily jazz, but discovered textures and electronic vibes I didn't expect. Most of the score is by industrial rock band members Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross from Nine Inch Nails. The futuristic vibes contrast with the more down-to-earth jazz songs included in the soundtrack.

The animation is hyper realistic in the scenes of the real world, which is typical of Pixar's work, with great attention to detail, urban landscapes, and a beautiful color palette. In the before scenes, the animation reminds me of the style of Inside Out, which is simpler and not that stylish.

The voice work is stupendous with Jamie Fox leading the cast in the role of Joe Gardner. He certainly gives this character gravitas and an adorable personality. Tina Fey plays 22, the character Joe befriends in his other life, and is quite vibrant and unique.

The message of the film is that everyone can find their own talents at the right time in their life. Life can be as delicious as a slice of pizza, because life is amazing and simple as it is.

I give Soul 4 out of 5 starts and recommend it for ages 8 to18 and adults as well. It is releasing December 25, 2020 on Disney Plus.

By Zoe C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

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


GREENLAND
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
GREENLAND
STX ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 14-18
Description - A family fights for survival as a planet-killing comet races to Earth. John Garrity (Gerard Butler), his estranged wife Allison (Morena Baccarin), and young son Nathan make a perilous journey to their only hope for sanctuary. Amid terrifying news accounts of cities around the world being leveled by the comet's fragments, the Garritys experience the best and worst in humanity while they battle the increasing panic and lawlessness surrounding them. As the countdown to global apocalypse approaches zero, their incredible trek culminates in a desperate and last-minute flight to a possible safe haven.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - See youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Are you interested in an adventure? Are you ready for an intense ride of a lifetime? Well if so, Greenland is the movie for you! This film tests the limits of our society and portrays something everyone is scared might happen: The apocalypse. Greenland completely immerses you in its intensity, and also in incredible acting performances and visually stunning scenes.

Greenland starts off following a man named John Garrity (Gerard Butler) who learns of a comet named Clark that will be passing by Earth. Clark seems to be all fun and interesting until it is not! Fragments of Clark begin hitting Earth, wiping out cities, counties, and billions of lives. John discovers a safe haven, and he vows to get his family to it no matter what obstacles they face.

One of the biggest challenges about making a film about the apocalypse is making it look realistic. The visual effects department made everything look as if it was real, especially when it comes to scenes with comet fragments hitting Earth. Director Ric Roman Waugh also set up the story in such a way that it really makes the viewer wonder, how far would I go to protect my family?

Greenland delivers everything you would expect about an apocalypse movie along with stunning visual scenes. My concern with this film is that it lags in the middle making you aware of the two-hour runtime. Some scenes feel not unnecessary, and that the story could work perfectly without them. Also, Greenland pushes the boundaries of a PG-13 film because of the major intensity and gore. Throughout the film--with society on edge and people taking advantage of the crisis--gun violence, murder, and cursing frequently occur. Every child has a different maturity level, but even as a mature 14-year-old, I found some parts of this film difficult to watch at times.

I give Greenland 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 14 to 18 plus adults because of the intensity and violence. You can find Greenland digitally on December 18, 2020.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 14-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


HOPE'S LEGACY
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
HOPE'S LEGACY
VISION FILMS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-15
Description - After the death of her grandmother, Lizzie decides to go back into eventing. With the help of past eventor Linda, her fiance James, and her family, Lizzie must learn to stand tall as she is challenged by the planning of her upcoming wedding and by her competitor Bethany. The sequel to Christmas Ranch.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Sequel to Christmas Ranch, Hope's Legacy follows Lizzie's struggle to navigate life and love after her grandmother dies. Grieving, she decides to rekindle something she and her grandmother shared: their love of horseback riding. The rest of the film follows the twists and turns of the endeavor and how her relationships evolve around it.

This film is ideal for teenagers from ages seven to thirteen who are interested in horseback riding and romance. It does not delve into any serious topics, nor does it employ any intricate cinematography or stellar acting. Although romance is a vital part to the plot, Lizzie's relationship with her female trainer, Linda, does take up a healthy amount of screen time. This kind of representation is still rare in today's world and is important for younger female audiences.

Hope's Legacy is family and child friendly. However, it does make an appeal to Christian audiences as the roles of the pastor and ideals of marriage are discussed on occasion. The production level is acceptable and you can enjoy this best, if taken at face value. Young viewers who are interested in horses and romance or are just looking for a lighthearted movie will enjoy it very much. Reviewed by Joy P., KIDS FIRST! Adult reviewer.

Hope's Legacy is a very sweet story. I like the charm that all the characters hold in their unique personalities. I like the storyline and how multi-dimensional it is.

Following the death of her grandma who loved horses, Lizzie decides to carry on eventing with her horse Legacy. She gets engaged to her fianc�' and tries to plan the wedding while practicing with her horse and problems arise.

The camera shows amazing panorama and crane shots above the beautiful scenery and pans to show emotion on so many loved ones' faces. The cinematography and the music pair to show the serene landscape and accent the dramatic and awesome moments in the film.

The message of this film is that if you want something it may not always be easy, but you must go for it to get what you really want out of life.

I give Hope's Legacy 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to18, plus adults. This film will be available on January 5, 2021. Look for it. Reviewed by Melissa M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Reviewer
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The movie Hope's Legacy is a motivational film! I absolutely love this movie and thought this is a clear beautiful film. You do not need to be an equestrian or animal fanatic to love this movie. It is entertaining and includes lots of uplifting spirit from the main characters.

The storyline is about a young girl Lizzy (Taylor Lyons), who gets the farm passed down to her after her grandmother's death. Lizzy decides to go back into eventing along with planning her wedding with her fiance James (Allen Williamson). Lizzy needs to learn to stand tall while dealing with her tough competition Bethany (Abigail Reed). At least Lizzy is not alone, she has her mentor Linda Locke (Dyan Cannon).

I absolutely love the horses and pretty backgrounds throughout the film. I enjoyed seeing Lizzy's horse Legacy. It is so stunning to see the action of the horses through the film. Another thing I liked is the music. The background music is inspirational and fits the storyline well. I found the film to be very appealing and adventurous. My favorite character is Bethany because Abigail Reed portrays the antagonist so well. Taylor Lyons really portrays Lizzy so well. I was surprised with the movie, because I did not know what the ending had in store and that kept me engaged. The film takes place on a ranch, with competitions and events. Legacy is a bit corny at first but kept me engaged to the end. This film definitely is one of my favorite movies.

The message of the film is to never give up. Lizzy has to stand up and be brave to overcome the hurtful comments and rumors. She keeps going through this competitive event only to find the best award waiting for her. The film is very motivational and inspiring. You should know that throughout the film there are some adult topics about drugs.

I give Hope's Legacy 5 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. I think adults and families would enjoy this as well! This movie will be released on DVD and digital January 4, 2021.

Hope's Legacy is a heartfelt movie that gets you thinking, "Do you have enough hope to chase your dreams?" This film combines a great concept with multiple plot twists that leave us watching with anticipation. I thought a few things were going to happen and then something entirely different happens. It's a film that you HAVE to watch!

Hope's Legacy is about a girl named Lizzy (Taylor Lyons), who just lost her beloved grandmother, and is trying to take the lead at the ranch she left her. She just got back from college and wants to start eventing with her horse, Legacy, again. When her boyfriend James (Allen Williamson) pops the big question, she now has a wedding to plan and still train so she and Legacy can win and defeat her nemesis, Bethany (Abigail Reed). With the help of Linda (Dyan Cannon), an ex-horse eventer with a questionable past, she finds a way to get everything she wants.

The actors are the main reason this film has so much potential for success. Taylor Lyons carries the lead role very well because she can bounce around from emotion to emotion in one scene. She goes from sad, to happy, to confused, to angry and back to happy again. This range of emotions gives us a much better understanding of the severity of Lizzy's feelings. Linda is also an important character. She encourages Lizzy to try her best and keep her head in the game when Bethany shakes up her confidence. Without Linda's encouragement, Lizzy might back out of eventing. James tries to understand everything Lizzy is going through however, he is dealing with Bethany, who is looking to ruin his relationship with Lizzy. The audience will really be able to see the tension between the three main characters. My favorite part of Hope's Legacy is when Lizzy and James announce their engagement to their parents. They don't get the response they are expecting because the parents think they are too young. Everyone else thinks so too. This doesn't stop them from planning their wedding, which shows how much they love each other. Another thing I enjoy about this film is the way the background music complements all of the scenes. In the scene when Lizzy is stressing over picking flowers for the wedding, the background music comes through with a humorous tone. This makes me sense that the mood is lighthearted but serious, and that's exactly how I felt.

The message of Hope's Legacy is that hope is where you find it, and you can't let people take that fight inside of you. We can see the fighter inside Lizzy, and she tries her hardest, with the help of her loved ones, not to lose it. There is one scene where Linda and Lizzy are talking about horse steroids, but otherwise it's very kid and family friendly.

Hope's Legacy is a film with a lot of heart. I rate it 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18. Adults will also enjoy this! I definitely did. Hope's Legacy comes out on January 5, 2021, in theatres and digital. Make sure you check it out!

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

The movie Hope's Legacy is a film that takes movie-watchers through a series of events such as love, marriage and problems with competition. This movie is unpredictable in a way that kept my attention. When I think something is going to happen, it doesn't happen. It's fun, unexpected and definitely a film worth watching.

Hope's Legacy is about a young woman named Lizzy (Taylor Lyons) who needs to take care of her grandmother's farm after her passing. Lizzy and her fiance James (Allen Williamson) are about to get married, but Lizzy is having second thoughts because of her commitment to riding horses again and her suspicions about an old friend of James. Lizzy meets a woman named Linda and her granddaughter Hailey who helps her train for horseback riding events. But James' old friend competes in these events too and that means Lizzy has problems and decisions to make.

Lizzy's stunt work is amazing. It looks like she is on the horse in the riding scenes but she's not. Linda (Dyan Cannon) coaches Lizzy so she can be a better rider. Her acting is believable because she makes me think that she really wants to help Lizzy win cross country. The way James shows his love for Lizzy made me feel like they actually have a relationship with each other in real life. Bethany (Abigail Reed) is really convincing when she tries to sabotage James and Lizzy's relationship. The background music really sets the mood of what is happening in the scenes. There is a bit of a plot hole in this movie. Bethany says that if Lizzy competes in the event and doesn't forfeit, she will get revenge. But, when Lizzy goes through with the competition anyway, Bethany never does anything. She just kicks the fence and walks away.

The message of Hope's Legacy is that you have to believe in yourself no matter what anyone says. There are not anything inappropriate for kids, except that they do talk about drugs and horse steroids. Other than that, this film is very family-friendly.

Hope's Legacy is a delightful movie to watch. I rate it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 5 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theaters and digitally January 5, 2021. Look for it!

Reviewed by Giana N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

This is the perfect movie for a person who loves horses. I loved this movie; it has its happy moments as well as sad ones. I loved watching the main character discover what she wants for herself. I loved this movie because throughout the entire movie I could feel the emotions of the characters and what they were going through, I also love horses, so having one of the main characters be a horse made it that much more intriguing to me.

In this movie the plot follows the life of a young woman whose life changed drastically when her grandmother died. Her grandmother owned a ranch where Lizzy (the main character) rode her horse as a teenager. The ranch was left to Lizzy so she is on a journey to find what she really wants out of life. She gets back in the saddle and loves it. Her boyfriend decides to make a big change in their life for the better. This movie is a rollercoaster of emotions, I love that it shows the reality of life, that it is not always perfect but you have to make the best out of a bad situation. My favorite part of the movie was the show jumping competition, I loved this part of the movie because it showed how much Lizzy had grown in how she handles herself and how she and her horse have grown closer and are in sync with one another.

I really liked the performance of Taylor Lyons (Lizzy), I liked her performance because she showed real emotion and it did not look forced. I liked her performance made the whole movie seem more real and because so much had happened to the character I could tell from her expressions that she felt everything crashing down on her world. I also like Allen Williamson's (James) performance, I could see the emotion behind his eyes when he was talking. I loved that the emotion seemed natural.

The message of the film is when you want something, you have to work hard to get it. Lizzy really wanted to do eventing instead of a job, she works hard for what she wants and is able to succeed. She knew what she wanted so she went out and got it, with the help of her family and friends.

What stuck out about this movie most to me was the attention to detail, from the clothes used in riding to the measuring of the bar for the competition. They really did a great job making sure everything in the movie made sense with real life. I think that the little details make all the difference, this movie was well done in that regard.

This movie meets the KIDS FIRST! Guidelines. I would say that the audience for this movie would be people from ages 11-18. I think most people would enjoy it. I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars. I loved the attention to detail and the emotion shown.

Reviewed by Lorelei T., KIDS FIRST! Juror, age 15

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


WILD MOUNTAIN THYME
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
WILD MOUNTAIN THYME
BLEECKER STREET MEDIA Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 14-18
Description - John Patrick Shanley, who created the classic MOONSTRUCK, brings his sweeping romantic vision to Ireland with Wild Mountain Thyme. The headstrong farmer Rosemary Muldoon (Emily Blunt) has her heart set on winning her neighbor Anthony Reilly's love. The problem is Anthony (Jamie Dornan) seems to have inherited a family curse, and remains oblivious to his beautiful admirer. Stung by his father Tony's (Christopher Walken) plans to sell the family farm to his American nephew (Jon Hamm), Anthony is jolted into pursuing his dreams in this comedic, moving and wildly romantic tale.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Wild Mountain Thyme is an Irish romantic-comedy. It is set in Ballina, County Mayo, a lush Irish countryside with picturesque farms, impressive coastlines and lovely farm houses. You will enjoy this sweet Irish love story.

This movie follows the story of the farmer Rosemary Muldoon (Emily Blunt). At a young age she is love-struck with her neighbor, Anthony Reilly (Jamie Dornan). Anthony spends his days ignoring the flirtations of his admirer. Tony Reilly (Christopher Walken) is not convinced his son Anthony is capable of managing the family farm and threatens to sell it to his American nephew, Adam (Jon Hamm). This motivates Anthony and he becomes determined to keep the farm. Rosemary finds herself in an unexpected love-triangle between Anthony and Adam.

Wild Mountain Thyme is directed by John Patrick Shanley and was adapted from his Broadway play Outside Mullingar. The story is based on John Patrick Shanley's own Irish family. Though I really appreciated the story, it might not appeal to many kids my age as much as it might appeal to older teens and adults. I really enjoyed the music in the film, which is composed by Amelia Warner, Jamie Dornan's wife. One of my favorite songs is "Will Ye Go, Lassie Go," also known as "Wild Mountain Thyme." This song plays an important role in this movie. The movie stars several very accomplished actors; Emily Blunt portrays a fiery and independent farm girl, Rosemary. Jon Hamm nicely portrays Adam, a wealthy American bachelor from New York who is on a mission to find an Irish wife. Jamie Dornan plays Anthony as a insecure and awkward farm boy. Christopher Walken role as Tony Reilly, the bickering father brings out his subtle and clever sense of humor. The Irish accents are well executed. I might recommend they add English subtitles though, because it can be hard to decipher what they are saying.

The main messages of the movie are be true to yourself, follow your dreams, squabble less and love more. There is some bad language and some drinking.

I give Wild Mountain Thyme 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 14 to 18, plus adults. This movie is scheduled to come in theaters December 11, 2020.

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

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 14-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: Web Series


MR. IGLISIAS
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MR. IGLISIAS
NETFLIX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 14-18
Description - Mr. Iglesias is an American comedy streaming television series that premiered on Netflix on June 21, 2019. The series stars Gabriel Iglesias who executive produces alongside Kevin Hench, Joe Meloche, and Ron DeBlasio. In August 2019, the series was renewed for a second season which premiered on June 17, 2020. Season 3 comes out December 8, 2020.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Mr. Iglesias is a streaming TV series with a great moral message and a lot of potential. The story follows Mr. Iglesias (Gabe Iglesias), a high school teacher who wants nothing more than to help his students thrive. He works to help his students through their interpersonal issues while also working on his own anxieties.

This show is a sitcom, so how is the comedy? To be honest, the comedy is very hit or miss for me. And that's mainly because this show uses a laugh track. I found it a bit annoying and it consistently broke my immersion. I also don't understand why this show needs a laugh track in the first place. It's a very outdated tactic and it makes the show feel outdated as a result. Though, the pop culture references definitely don't help. There are some genuinely funny lines despite this flaw, but it's still something that really bothered me.

The characters are also hit or miss. I like a lot of the students, especially Grace (Gloria Aung) and Marisol (Cree Cicchino) as I felt they have a lot of development throughout the show. However, Mr. Iglesias's co-workers are mostly annoying. Paula (Sherri Shepard) especially bothered me the more episodes I watched, which is unfortunate since Sherri Shepard is a great comedy actor. Her very inappropriate humor feels so jarring and it made me feel uncomfortable at points. Weirdly enough, Carlos (Oscar Nunez) actually grew on me. Despite how comically evil he is at first, once he tones down his hatred for children, he becomes a very entertaining straight man. Mr. Iglesias himself is consistently entertaining. He definitely steals the show most of the time. Despite this, I'm not a fan of the way he is presented in the show. The character version of Gabriel Iglesias is presented with very few flaws, and characters regularly comment on how his biggest flaw is how nice he is. It feels unnatural and too perfect.

Mr. Iglesias has a good message and encourages us to realize that teachers are incredibly important to the lives of children-- we should celebrate that importance. The upcoming third season is the best season of the show. Despite fewer episodes, the jokes are a lot funnier, and there's a lot of character development in the third season. So if you are already a fan you will definitely be happy with what's coming next.

I give Mr. Iglesias 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 14 to 18. Season 3 comes out December 8, 2020.

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 14-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


LOUIS VAN BEETHOVEN
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LOUIS VAN BEETHOVEN
BETA FILM
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12-18
Description - 1779. Eight-year-old Ludwig van Beethoven, called "Louis", is already known as a musical prodigy. He learns to go his own way - much to the dismay of the people around him. Some years later, he meets Mozart during times of political upheaval. The unconventional genius and French Revolution are sparking a fire in Louis' heart; he doesn't want to serve a master - only the arts. Facing times of family tragedies and unrequited love, he almost gives up. However, Louis makes it to Vienna to study under Haydn in 1792, and the rest is history. Who was this man, whose music has since touched countless hearts and minds? At the end of his life, the master is isolated by loss of loved ones and hearing. Surely though, he was way ahead of his times.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The film, Louis Van Beethoven, is well executed and accurately depicts the life of Louis Van Beethoven. It was very interesting to observe how his character was shaped during his early childhood and how different life events helped him make decisions that had enormous results. The performance of all the different actors is exceptional. The film paints a great picture, and it makes the observer appreciate the daily life during Beethoven's time in the late 1700s. The details enhance the movie overall and the music, of course, brings unique touches to the film.

This biographical film focuses on the life of the famous composer Louis Van Beethoven (Colin Putz/Tobias Moretti/Anselm Bresgott). The film mixes the past and present to expose the major events that shaped Beethoven and ultimately led him to become one of the best known musicians in history. Focusing on his passions of music, freedom, and change, this film shines a light on the not very well known part of his story, but a very important one.

There are abrupt changes in time that can be confusing or hard to catch at first when the film switches between the past and present. However, these changes also help the film compare what acts in the past led Beethoven to make decisions in the present. The flow of the movie, its style and overall structure are all well executed. The actors give believable performances. The language and vocabulary may be a challenge for some audiences as some words may be unknown to younger generations, and even to some adults.

The cinematography is high quality and shows beautiful details about the daily life during this time period. The costumes are beautiful and they accurately portray what people wore in the late 1700s. The music is primarily classical pieces and they enhance the overall tone of the film.

This movie explores both the life of the compositor Beethoven and the time period in which he lived. The culture and customs of the people are showed and they can be appreciated, as they are very different from current times. The film focuses mainly in the formative years of Beethoven and how the various aspects he had to endure led him to become the man he is known for now. The film may encourage the viewer to learn more about Beethoven's life and about the other artists during the same era such as Mozart and Haydn. The movie seeks to explore a not very know part of the life of Beethoven. Through his story, it shows how the desire for freedom and wealth, and a fight for love, can have major influences in making decisions. Also, the film shows how family affects the progress of children, and how big an effect that events have on children's development.

Heavy drinking is present throughout the movie, and there are some scenes that depict strong actions (getting smacked, yelling, punching). The only profanity in the movie is the use of the word used to refer the bottom part of a person. There is a scene in which there is a suicide attempt. The only part showed is a gun being pulled to the air and then the man with a bandage in his head (no graphic scene is showed). There is a discussion about this scene after by the characters, in which the language is a little strong for a moment.

I give Louis Van Beethoven 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Due to the length of the film and the fact that the dialogue is in German, with English subtitles, I don't think most younger children would appreciate it. People with a musical background would find this as a great opportunity to learn more about Beethoven's history that is not very known.

Louis Van Beethoven is a film that shows how music and the desire of freedom were the main passions of the famous compositor. The film walks through his early years and it jumps occasionally to the present, which helps to see how one incident relates to another. Beethoven was a gifted musician since early childhood and this biographical film shows how he expressed his gift during his daily life. The film is well directed and executed, as all the performance of the actors are exceptional. The classical music he composed as well as some from other artists such as Mozart, add to the tone of the film. Releasing on virtual cinema, VOD and Digital December 2, 2020.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments

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


SAFETY
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SAFETY
DISNEY+ Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 9 - 18
Description - The story of Ray-Ray McElrathbey, a freshman football player for Clemson University, who secretly raised his younger brother on campus after his home life became too unsteady.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I absolutely loved the film Safety. The story is so inspiring and motivational and the camera work is phenomenal. This story is heartbreaking, yet makes you hopeful. Some of the scenes are comical, balancing the problem and the solution perfectly. It was inspiring to watch the two brothers take care of each other, always putting family first. Every scene touched my heart.

The storyline follows the protagonist, Ray (Jay Reeves) who has been accepted to Clemson University on a scholarship to pursue his dream of being a football player, but his life at home is not so easy. His mother (Amanda Warren), whose husband left her, is addicted to drugs. Ray is left to care for his little brother Fahmarr (Thaddeus J. Mixson). Can Ray handle school, family, football and a little bit of love life? How can he take care of his brother if Fahmerr is not allowed on campus?

Jay Reeves, who plays Ray, acts with emotion and expression, putting his all into every scene. Some scenes brought me to tears and others had me rolling around in my chair with laughter. Thaddeus J. Mixson who plays Fahmarr, plays his character in a way that is very likeable and funny. Although his character is humorous, some of his scenes still break your heart . The casting directors made an excellent choice for all of the actors. The camera work is amazing. The transitions are very creative and the perspective is wonderful. For example, during a football game, there is a moment where all you can hear is Ray's breathing. The angle is as if you are looking from his eyes. The background music pumps you up for the games, making you excited and eager to see the results.

The message of this film is to put family first. Family is the most important thing in the world and you always have to be there for each other. No matter what happens, you can always rely on your family to help you out. There is no violence except during the football games. As usual there is tackling and pushing, although no one gets hurt. There is no bad language although there is a part during the film that is a bit creepy, with a group of men coming out of the shadows.

I give Safety 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 9 to 18. Adults would also enjoy this film. Safety is streaming exclusively on Disney+ starting December 11, 2020.

By Nyara A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 9-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


TIMECRAFTERS: THE TREASURE OF PIRATE'S COVE
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
TIMECRAFTERS: THE TREASURE OF PIRATE'S COVE
FRONT ROW ENTERTAINMENT Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 8-14
Description - While searching for lost treasure, time traveling pirates end up in the modern day and do battle with unlikely foes: a group of kids with the latest in techy gadgetry.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Timecrafters: The Treasure of Pirate's Cove is a fun-filled adventurous movie! The cast is spectacular and the sets are very realistic.

The story follows a boy named Josh whose father has been missing for five years when a time machine sends a crew of 18th century pirates flying into the future. Josh and his friends find a map belonging to them which leads them on a secret journey to find the treasure. Join Josh, Chip, Bridget and Hedge on an exciting adventure full of fun, mystery and problem solving with some unusual encounters along the way in their home town of Pirate's Cove.

The cast is incredible and full of familiar faces and some big names. Casey Simpson plays Josh Dare and his emotional performance as he recovers from the loss of his dad is captivating. Denise Richards plays Victoria Dare, a struggling single and very loving mom to Josh. Her devotion to her missing husband is evident throughout. She also shows a comical side to her character when interacting with the pirates. Other cast members include Gavin Magnus, Lucas Jaye, Malcom McDowell and Eric Balfour. Gavin plays Brian the spoilt and not so nice kid. He plays his role exactly as one would expect, which is in stark contrast to his real life persona. Lucas Jaye plays the young and geeky Chip. His performance is as cheeky and goofy as it should be. Eric Balfour and Malcom McDowell give their performances as pirates well, keeping in character at all times, and making me laugh on many occasions.

The sets are awesome and very realistic. I especially love the part in the secret cave where Josh accidentally rides a mining cart like a little train through an underground tunnel to end in a surprising location. It looks like so much fun. My favorite part of the film is when Betsy and Victoria think the real pirates that have just come from the time machine are actual actors for their pirate play and they end up playing along, fighting each other on stage in front of the audience, it is hilarious. I also like the pirate ship tree-house in Josh's back garden. It looks very cute and cozy.

There is an underlying story of good things working out for good people and the film has the usual fun story of good guys versus the bad guys, where everyone else that gets caught in the middle and taken along for the ride.

I give Timecrafters: The Treasure of Pirate's Cove 4 out of 5 stars and I recommend it for ages 8 to 14, plus adults. You can find it in select theatres December 12, 2020.

Reviewed by Katie F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Timecrafters: The Treasure of Pirates Cove is a sci-fi action film with hilarious pirates and adventures! And--shiver me timbers!-- the special effects used in scenes such as the time travel, storms and flashbacks really help drive the film.

This film is about a group of treasure-hunting kids led by Josh Dare (Casey Simpson), who find a treasure map that was the key to locating the lost treasure of William Kidd that was buried in their town many years ago. At the same, time-traveling pirates wake up 300 years later and realize their treasure map is missing and that the kids have it. The pirates have to try to blend in with the local residents while they try to recover the map before their cover is blown. Coincidentally, the town is putting on a play about pirates and so the worlds collide, and the adventures begin.

The main characters of this film are Josh Dare and his friends, Brigette (McKinley Blehm), Hedge (Connor Cain), and Chip (Lucas Jaye). Josh's mom, Victoria Dare (Denise Richards) and Josh's rival, Byron Beecher (Gavin Magnus) also had important roles in the film. My favorite character was Byron because I enjoyed watching him mature and transform. The pirates' language and costumes were realistic and spot on, representing what pirates might actually look like, say and wear. The film location was in Mendocino, California because of all the beautiful coves there.

The character Josh Dare summed up the message of this film perfectly when he said, "The greatest treasures the world has to offer are the friends and family who sail on the adventure of life." There are a lot of treasures in life like gems, gold, money, artifacts, and other valuable things. But the most important treasures are the friends and family that are always by your side.

I rate Timecrafters: The Treasure of Pirates Cove 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 and up. Adults will like it too. This film comes out in theaters December 12, 2020.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 8-14
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


STILLWATER
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
STILLWATER
APPLE TV Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 4-7
Description - Based on the Caldecott Honor Children's book series Zen Shorts by Jon J Muth, Stillwater is produced by Gaumont and Scholastic Entertainment and centers on siblings Karl, Addy and Michael, who are typical kids with typical kid challenges - meaning that sometimes even the smallest things can feel insurmountable. Fortunately for these three, they have Stillwater, a wise panda, as their next-door neighbor. Through his example, stories and gentle humor, Stillwater gives the children a deeper understanding of their feelings as well as tools that help them face their own day-to-day challenges. Stillwater also brings newfound fun and adventure for the three, opening their eyes to the quiet wonders of the world around them, and guiding them to their place within it.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Stillwater is a unique offering this winter, combining stories from around the world with an endearing cast, as well as profound morals. This superb bundle will surely be attractive to young viewers!

Stillwater revolves around siblings Karl, Addy and Michael who have a unique anthropomorphic mammal as their neighbor - a wise panda named (surprise, surprise) Stillwater! Stillwater loves tai-chi, trying new things and eating bamboo shoots. Plus he seems to have the answer to any question the three kids ask. Thus, they have a very special friendship and bond with Stillwater; his stories help shape their perspective on life, the work, and their relationships with others.

James Sie, Judah Mackey, Eva Binder and Tucker Chandler make up the main cast of this film. Binder and Chandler, who play Addy and Michael respectively, are secondary characters, whose performances don't necessarily take center-stage, but still are quite skillful. Speaking of center-stage, Sie, who plays Stillwater the zen-friendly panda, puts on a superb performance. He succeeds in capturing the essence of what (at least, I think) a panda would sound like if it could speak, with his deep and sonorous voice. Sie was a great choice to play Stillwater, who discusses Chinese and East Asian culture in the show since he himself is of Chinese descent. I also love Judah Mackey's portrayal of Karl, the inquisitive, sensitive youngest child in the family, who has a special affection for his panda friend. Mackey, along with many of the other characters in the film, help the show maintain its momentum because of their strong performances. A tip of the hat is in order for all the writers of the show, as well as the animators and producers behind it, as they seamlessly and intricately detail Stillwater the panda's famed stories with backdrops of Chinese villages, Indian temples, Central American forests and adorable cartoonish animal characters from all regions. The inclusion and appreciation of cultural elements, specifically from Asia, is refreshing and exactly what we like to see! The score of the show also really stands out, as the serene notes of the Xiao, sitar and guitar help accent all of the six episodes' action-packed scenes.

Each episode of this show promotes a different, positive message. These include perseverance, patience, recognizing your inner talent, overcoming your fears, teamwork and being there for those you love. Stillwater promotes positive social behavior and is a great family watch.

I give Stillwater 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 7. Stillwater is releasing

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 4-7
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


GODMOTHERED
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
GODMOTHERED
DISNEY+ Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Description - A young and unskilled fairy godmother ventures out on her own to prove her worth by tracking down a young girl whose request for help was ignored.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - If you haven't heard by now, there's a new Disney film that's sure to become a favorite holiday classic--it's the magical movie called Godmothered. This film is a fun look at the world of Fairy Stepmothers yet also a sad realization that not enough people nowadays believe in magic or that magical things can happen if you wish for them with all your heart.

Set at Christmastime, Godmothered is a comedy about Eleanor (Jillian Bell), a young, inexperienced fairy godmother-in-training, who learns that the future of godmothers is coming to an end forever. Feeling that she can save herself and her fellow fairy godmothers from unemployment or from getting new jobs as tooth fairies, she decides to show the world that people still need fairy godmothers, magic, and a chance to live "happily ever after," in their lives!

Not only does Eleanor help Kate, the single mom who is the focus of her mission, as well as helping Kate's kids along the way, but they all eventually end up helping to boost Eleanor's confidence and belief that she can still make someone's dream come true. Together they help Eleanor believe that maybe she still has a chance at keeping fairy godmothers employed, even in modern times.

Like nearly all Disney movies, Godmothered has that look and feel of something magical on and off screen. From the sets decorated for the holidays, the snow on the ground, to the big Christmas parade, visually, this movie keeps you in the holiday mood the whole time. Eleanor's Fairy-Godmother dress will remind you of those worn in past Disney movies, and the holiday music mixed with wand waving special effects all add to the fun. You can tell from the on-camera performances of the actors that not only were they having a lot of fun making this movie, but when the cameras stopped, it feels like the fun continued as well. I love how Eleanor keeps as cheery and sugary sweet as you a storybook fantasy character might and it was fun to see her react to people, places, things and events in the "real world" that she was not accustomed to experiencing in her own world.

The message of this film is to never give up. That believing you can achieve your goals and staying determined to make them a reality is the one true way to make them happen. In Godmothered, Eleanor realizes her original plans weren't going to happen as she anticipated, but she found a way to work around them and still create a "happily ever after" in the end.

I give Godmothered 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. It's hilarious, heartwarming and a magical holiday film for all ages. Godmothered premieres exclusively on Disney+ on December 4, 2020. Don't miss it.

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

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


MOSUL
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MOSUL
101 STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 16-18
Description - A police unit from Mosul fight to liberate the Iraqi city from thousands of ISIS militants.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Mosul is a whirlwind of a movie anchored by legitimately visceral sequences throughout and brisk pacing that the film sustains from beginning to end. In an environment where streaming has become the predominant mode of consuming content, it's gratifying to get a movie this immersive, one that never truly lets up and one that will certainly keep you invested in the different directions it goes in.

Based on a New Yorker article from 2017 and produced by the Russo Brothers and the production company AGBO, Mosul takes place in the titular city and follows the exploits of the Nineveh SWAT team which gained their prestige through their clashes against ISIS forces. We meet the team through the eyes of Kawa, a rookie cop who is ushered into team by the steely commander Jasem, after they save Kawa and his seasoned partner mid-ambush. With ISIS on the retreat from the city and the arrival of a new command, the team has gone rogue and decides to carry out one final mission of their own, the details of which are kept from Kawa, but we come to find it's rooted in a far more personal place than the ones they've gone through prior.

Through the absorbing bend much of the film takes, we are put in the heat of battle at every turn, but it's rarely energetic and that becomes an effective element of the film's tone. There is a weariness to each encounter with the enemy as they occur with increasing frequency and over the course of their journey; these soldiers are just trying to survive and here's where Mosul cements its stakes breathlessly and efficiently. It begins to feel inevitable that the Nineveh will lose one of their own nearly every time they make contact with ISIS's opposing forces. What sets Mosul apart from similarly tactical minded flicks is the moments of loss it frequently hammers home. In between the intensity of the action and each waypoint on their venture, there are moments of stillness where we get to witness the fighter's true colors which makes their losses sting with greater severity, sometimes it's commentating over a soap opera on television and at others, it's cruising in a Humvee through the ruins of Mosul, as they're reminded of why they fight and who they're fighting for. The secret sauce that really makes those points of the film work when the team isn't being rained down on by gunfire is that they're still actively pushing the story forward and doing the necessary work to engage us with the characters at the center of the story. Mosul's structure reminds me of that of a video game, with each conflict or objective so to speak, being separated by points of exposition and development, but it works for a mission-focused narrative in this case.

Mosul's scenes of battle can get pretty brutal so I recommend this for ages 16 to 18 for some moments of extreme intensity and some graphic violence at times. Mosul is a raw testament to the heroism of the Nineveh SWAT team with an unexpectedly emotional conclusion and I greatly recommend it. I give Mosul 3.5 out of 5 stars. You can see it when it drops on Netflix on November 26, 2020.

By Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST!, age 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 16-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


INSIDE PIXAR
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
INSIDE PIXAR
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: DOCUMENTARY
Description - Produced by Pixar Animation Studios, Inside Pixar is directed by Erica Milsom and Tony Kaplan, the series offers insights into the personal and cinematic stories that provide an inside look into the people, artistry, and culture of Pixar Animation Studios.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Inside Pixar is so amazing, because it shows the different jobs at Pixar to be part of the team making a great movie or TV show. I have always wondered about that and how certain art pieces come to life. In the second episode, we meet an artist named Deana Marsigliese who explains how her characters come to life. It must be so cool to work on a huge project at Pixar and this film takes us behind the scenes.

Inside Pixar is a documentary series showing different people and what they do inside Pixar. So far there are only two episodes for season one and each is 11 minutes long. They are really cool and explain art, cinema, stories and more.

In the first episode of the show, we are introduced to the genius behind the movie Soul, Kemp Powers. Soul is a movie about a man who struggles to become a jazz musician. When he finally gets his chance, an accident causes his soul to be separated from his body and go to a world where souls develop personalities, quirks, and traits before being sent off to Earth. There, he finds ways to live again. In the second episode, we learn about art-making and character thinking from Deana Marsigliese. She worked on Soul, Toy Story and other films. It is really cool to learn how an artist thinks about creating new things. The things that really stood out to me were how they it's like a real family at Pixar and when one person starts a project that project might turn into a movie or a new scene in a movie.

The message of this show is that you can be and do anything. It is a different type of documentary that shows some real sweet inside scoop on one of today's most creative movie studios. I really do like this series and if you're a Disney fan you will too.

I give Inside Pixar 5 out of 5 stars because I really love it! I recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. You can find this show on Disney+ beginning November 13, 2020.

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

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


WHAT A DISASTER!
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
WHAT A DISASTER!
PBS DISTRIBUTION Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 7-18
Description - PBS SoCal, Southern California's home for new PBS program premieres, debuts an entertaining new spin on emergency preparedness with the special What A Disaster! The fun new game show hosted by Jay Jackson (Parks & Recreation) challenges three Southern California families to test their emergency readiness plans in the event of the next wildfire, earthquake, flood or other disaster. Viewers will follow the contestants' progress through a series of fast-paced, exciting tasks that include comical twists designed to educate and teach critical, lifesaving guidance.

The competition-themed special seeks to raise awareness on the importance of disaster preparedness as well as equip viewers with an understanding of the "do's and don'ts" in emergency situations. Produced during the COVID-19 pandemic, each family's strategies will be judged remotely by two disaster response experts: El Sol Neighborhood Educational Center in San Bernardino's Lulu Lopez and LISTOS National Program Director Liliana Encinas. The family with the most creative and resourceful solutions will be rewarded with a $1,000 cash prize. The other families with the least number of successes will be receiving a Disaster Preparedness Kit.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review below
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - What A Disaster! is an enjoyable family watch, after which you'll be prepared for any disaster that might come your way. The unique format, engaging challenges and crucial message all make this an amazing movie to watch over Thanksgiving!

What A Disaster! is a game-show style program hosted by Jay Jackson, centering around three Southern-Californian families (The Yang family, the Smith family and the Luna family) competing to be crowned the most prepared for any natural disaster that may come their way. They're also competing to receive $1,000. The families are led through a series of challenges that include knowing where your utilities are and what to pack if you're running out of a burning building.

As this is a PBS production, the 40 minute film is stitched together quite well. The contestants are spontaneous and bring life to the film, especially the little kids! I also enjoyed Jay Jackson's bubbly hosting. He looks upon these families as his neighbors, and the care he has is evident. There are some points where the contestants' voices seem to echo or reverb, though. It is also a bit obvious that the judges are reading from a script, as their eye line is off-center. But overall, the production value does not drag What A Disaster! down.

As its title would give away, the film promotes disaster preparedness and staying safe in any situation. Also, this film endorses messages of sticking together, especially with family, and teamwork. This is an especially important message for 2020, given the wildfires that SoCal has suffered, and I'm super glad that PBS produced this program.

I give What A Disaster! 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18. Adults would enjoy this film as well. What A Disaster! premieres in Southern California this Thanksgiving on Thurs., Nov. 26 at 7 p.m. on PBS SoCal and encores on Sat., Nov. 28 at 8 p.m. on KCET.

Reviewed by Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 7-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: TV


I HATE NEW YEAR'S
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
I HATE NEW YEAR'S
TELLO FILMS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 16-18
Description - With a huge hit on her hands, rising music star Layne hits some serious writer's block. She decides to head home to Nashville for New Year's Eve, looking to find her ex and get back her songwriting mojo. As she spends New Year's jumping between bars and parties with her best friend Cassie, looking for the one that got away, she realizes that the love of her life, and the reason she sings, has been right in front of her all along.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I Hate New Year's uses current events very well, including the world of the music industry, the use of social media to promote and to present ideas, and especially the representation of the LGTBQ+ community. Teens and younger adults can relate to the film in that it deals with decision making and how to deal with emotions when insecurity hits. The songs in the film are beautifully done, and they add to the tone of the movie.

The storyline follows a rising pop star who finds herself unable to create songs, having writer's block. She travels to her hometown in hope of finding inspiration to continue creating music. With the help of her friend and the intervention of fate, she has to face her past to create the best future for her career, and for herself.

The film presents a story that is directed to older teenagers due to the themes of love, friendships, taking risks and insecurities. These topics are more topical for older teens and young adults. The writing is quite good and there is a solid continuity between each scene. It has good continuity and keeps the main themes easy to understand. There are some scenes that break the fourth wall which was unexpected and maybe unnecessary, but they do add to the comical tone of the film. In some scenes, acting doesn't quite have the punch I would hope for, but for the most part, emotions are well portrayed and they can be both observed and felt by the audience. The vocabulary is very modern and it addresses issues such as social media, school experiences and dreams. The music is excellent; the original songs are very well done with lots of emotion. The images are high quality so every detail is appreciated. The main characters are portrayed by popular actors that can be recognized from known TV shows and other films. However, the camera work is a bit uneven. There are multiple scenes where the shot starts to shake and gets out of focus. Sometimes when people are speaking, the camera shakes and it feels awkward.

This is a LGTBQ+ film. It shows a romantic and comical story between two characters that are young women. It also shows representation of a minority group, which can be crucial for young members of the community that may be looking to see someone like themself in a movie. It also deals with many themes that are frequent for teenagers and young adults, which makes it very appropriate for those age groups.

The messages of the film is about how friendships can make a difference in someone's life, especially when insecurities or hard situations arise. It also deals with the issue of taking risks and facing decisions that may not result in what is wanted, but are necessary to move on in life. Throughout the movie multiple characters drink alcoholic drinks. They are not underage, but there is drinking.

I give I Hate New Year's 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 16 to 18, plus adults. This LGTBQ+ film explores the life of a young rising pop star and how coming back home can mean more than just creating a new song. Multiple themes are in play - how facing decisions can make a difference in your future, how cultivating friendships is important, and what being a friend means. It especially shows how fame and popularity are not as important as family, friends and one's wellbeing. The original songs of the film are very emotional and the lyrics are poems that add to the chemistry between the characters. There are some minor issues such as shaky camera work and some slow performances, but the emotional meaning of the movie and the storyline make those issues not that severe. Representation of different members of the LGTBQ+ are represented throughout the movie. The movie is centered on the life of a young woman, and how she is able to move on and to grow as a person once she accepts the circumstances of her life.

Reviewed by David O., KIDS FIRST! Youth Juror

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 16-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


TEAM MARCO
KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
TEAM MARCO
SAMUEL GOLDWYN FILMS Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 6-14
Description - Marco, 12, is obsessed with his iPad and hardly leaves the house. But when his grandmother dies and his grandfather moves in, Marco's life is turned upside-down and he's forced...to go play outside. "Nonno" (Grandpa) introduces him to bocce ball and to the neighborhood crew of old Italian men who play daily at the local court. With sport, laughter and love, Marco finds connection to other people and rounds up a team of neighborhood kids to take on Marco's grandfather and his pals.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Team Marco is a wonderful, heartwarming and sweet movie. This family-friendly fun comedy will have you laughing, bring you joy and inspire you to seize each day.

This movie is about a boy named Marco (Owen Vaccaro) who is insanely addicted to video games. When his grandmother dies and his house nearly burns down, his grandpa, Nonno (Anthony Patellis), moves in. Nonno is extremely bothered with his grandson's obsession with video games. Nonno will not stand for this and takes measures into his own hands. He decides to take away all of Marco's electronics and forces him to play outside. Nonno teaches Marco his favorite sport - bocce ball. Can Marco and his team of friends beat Nonno and his gang of neighborhood Italian bocce ballers in a bocce ball tournament?

This movie was written, directed and produced by Julio Vincent Gambuto, and it is his first feature film. This story is inspired by a real-life experience. About four years ago, when Julio was visiting his nieces and nephews, he noticed that his nephew, Marco, didn't even greet him when he arrived at their house because his head was buried in his electronics. This sparked the idea for his movie. The film takes place in Julio's beloved hometown, Staten Island, NY. It was filmed on location, which was very important to Julio. He loves his hometown community and was passionate about it being filmed on Staten Island. My favorite characters are Nonno and Marco. I really like the performances of Anthony Patellis because of his dry sense of humor and his love of family, which shines through. He is very entertaining while playing the cranky grandpa battling technology. Owen Vaccaro convincingly plays the "pre-teen techie" Marco. I can relate to his love of electronics and his struggles trying to balance Nonno's desire for conversation, friendship and connecting through Nonno's favorite sport, bocce ball. My favorite part of the movie is when Nonno is trying to figure out the Google Assistant.

The main message of the movie is to be present when around your family. This film shows technology is not always bad, and in fact connects us. It also reminds everyone that, while technology will be around forever, your family will not be. Cherish the time you have with your family.

I give Team Marco 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 14, plus adults. Team Marco will be released on most streaming platforms November 20, 2020. Look for it.

Reviewed by Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

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


HALF BROTHERS
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
HALF BROTHERS
FOCUS FEATURES Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGES 13-18
Description - Renato, a Mexican aviation exec, is shocked to learn he has an American half-brother he never knew about, the free-spirited Asher. They are forced on a road trip together, tracing the path their father took from Mexico to the US.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Half Brothers is a fun-loving movie with loveable characters which takes you on a wild adventure that will have you laughing. Along the way the characters learn about each other and their father. They also learn a lot about themselves. These two brothers with opposite personalities must unite to uncover the hidden truth of the past.

The story begins with young Renato (Ian Inigo) enjoying time with his dad, Flavio (Juan Pablo Espinosa). Things change when Renato's dad leaves Mexico to go to the U.S. to look for work and does not return. Years later when Renato (Luis Gerardo Mendez) is a grown up, he gets a phone call saying his dad is extremely sick and he needs to come right away. He is torn between wanting to go and staying home to prepare for his wedding. He decides to go and gets the surprise of meeting his half-brother, Asher (Connor Del Rio) who he did not know existed. Their dad sends them on a wild journey to get the answers Renato has wanted to know his whole life - why his dad never came back for him. Along the way, he gets to know his half brother as they go on a hilarious and bonding scavenger hunt across America to get the answers.

My favorite scene is when Asher steals the goat from the barn. It kept me laughing and intrigued. All the actors make this odd situation funny and memorable. I also enjoyed the music selections playing during their road trips. They are catchy, uplifting and always enhance the mood of these scenes. Asher is an easy character to like. He always has a positive attitude and his clothing choices throughout the movie really fit his character.

The messages in this film are about how forgiving can be life changing, that it is okay to be yourself, and accepting others' differences can lead to the best friendships. While forgiveness is not always an easy thing to do, it is better to forgive than to hold onto something that makes you unhappy. Being yourself is important. Just because you are different it does not make you less important. Accepting differences in others can lead to happiness. You should know that there is some explicit language, the use of guns and violence and there is talk about some adult situations.

I give Half Brothers 5 out of 5 stars. It has some amazing messages that are delivered in a very humorous way. I recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults. This film comes out in theaters December 4, 2020.

Reviewed by Carlee S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

KIDS FIRST! Juror Recommended Age: 13-18
Suggested Retail Price: $
Media: FeatureFilm


CHRISTMAS CHRONICLES 2
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
CHRISTMAS CHRONICLES 2
NETFLIX Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: FEATURE, AGE 5-18
Description - It's been two years since siblings Kate (Darby Camp) and Teddy Pierce (Judah Lewis) saved Christmas, and a lot has changed. Kate, now a cynical teenager, is reluctantly spending Christmas in Cancun with her mom's new boyfriend (Tyrese Gibson) and his son Jack (Jahzir Bruno). Unwilling to accept this new version of her family, Kate decides to run away. But when a mysterious, magical troublemaker named Belsnickel threatens to destroy the North Pole and end Christmas for good, Kate and Jack are unexpectedly pulled into a new adventure with Santa Claus (Kurt Russell). Written and directed by Chris Columbus (Home Alone, Harry Potter) and co-starring Goldie Hawn, THE CHRISTMAS CHRONICLES: PART TWO is an action-packed adventure for the whole family that's full of heart, humor, and holiday spirit.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like The Christmas Chronicles 2 because it is a heartwarming film, full of magic and adventures which makes it so fun to watch. Santa Claus is not the typical Santa we are used to seeing in other movies. This Santa is a type of daredevil Santa.

If you watched The Christmas Chronicles in 2018, you must know that Kate (Darby Camp) and her brother Teddy (Judah Lewis) are friends with Santa Claus, played by the one and only Kurt Russell. Kate's mom and her boyfriend Bob (Tyrese Gibson) take Kate, Teddy and Jack (Jahzir Bruno), Bob's son, to celebrate Christmas in Cancun, Mexico. Kate doesn't want to be there as she misses her dad who passed away two years ago. An evil kid named Belsnickel (Julian Dennison) wants to destroy Santa and uses Kate to get to the North Pole to do his dirty deed. Jack follows her so they both end up at the North Pole and that's when ALL the adventure begins!

My favorite part is when Jack picks two of Mrs. Claus' special homemade cookies - confidence and bomb. When he needs confidence he forgets which one of the cookies is confidence and almost eats the cookie bomb. The graphics and digital effects are amazing. The reindeers and the cougar look real. The music is very appealing in every scene. The costumes are very seasonal. Mrs. Claus (Goldie Hawn) gives this movie a special touch, which makes this film different from the first movie. Mrs. Claus creates Santa's Village and takes good care of it. The movie mentions how it should be called Mrs. Claus Village, which gives this character the importance she deserves because, in reality, she is the person behind Santa, supporting him, taking care of him and his business.

The moral of this movie is to move on, be happy and let others be happy. Throughout the film we learn that Kate doesn't like her mom's new boyfriend and doesn't want Bob substituting for her dad. Santa shows her that family is everything and that they matter the most, so why not cherish that her mom is happy because she found love again in Bob? Kate needs to accept that her mom loves Bob and that doesn't mean she stops loving her dad. She needs to understand her mom deserves to be happy. Life continues; people need to move on.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. The Christmas Chronicles 2 comes out on Netflix on November 25, 2020, so get your hot chocolate and cookies or popcorn ready to enjoy this magical film!

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

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


ANIMANIACS 2020
KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
ANIMANIACS 2020
HULU, LLC Click Title to View High Bandwidth Online Video Trailer This title has online video!
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 8 TO 18
Description - They're back! The Warner brothers, Yakko and Wakko, and the Warner sister Dot, have a great time wreaking havoc and mayhem in the lives of everyone they meet. After returning to their beloved home, the Warner Bros. water tower, the siblings waste no time in causing chaos and comic confusion as they run loose through the studio, turning the world into their personal playground. Joining Yakko, Wakko and Dot, fan-favorite characters Pinky and the Brain also return to continue their quest for world domination. Animaniacs is an American animated television series developed by Steven Spielberg for steaming service Hulu. It is a revival of the original 1993 television series of the same name. The new series sees the return of the Warner Brothers, Yakko and Wakko and their sister Dot (voiceovers by Rob Paulsen, Jess Harnell and Tress MacNeille), and of Pinky and the Brain (voiceover by Paulsen and Maurice LaMarche). The first season is set to premiere on Hulu November 20, 2020.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Animaniacs is back giving us tons of entertainment! Don't expect to see reruns with this rebooted animated series. Showrunner Wellesley Wild nails the creation of fresh and relevant content, while keeping the same hilarious craziness of the original series.

The series is about the Warner siblings Wakko, Yakko and Dot who are crazy and wild characters found on the Warner Bros. Studio. The episodes follow them as they get into trouble running around the Warner Bros. Studio lot and while meeting other characters. The new season picks up 22 years later, after they were locked away. Now we get to see their new adventures as they learn more about the current world around them and all the changes that have happened.

Director Steven Spielberg brings back the same characters and many of the original voice actors. The main characters are the Warner brothers and sister - Wakko (Jess Harnell), Yakko (Rob Paulsen) and Dot (Tress MacNeille). The setting for the series is the classic Warner Bros. Studio lot and the lot's water tower. It's hilarious to see the characters run around the lot learning about things that didn't exist two decades ago like tablets, climate change, Ubers, cat-fishing, YouTubers and Amazon drones. Ralph the security guard (Frank Welker) even has new tricks he can use to catch the Warner siblings, such as a net connected to a drone. The show was updated to a wide-screen format and to make it more gender balanced and diverse. In the premiere episode, Dot points out that Warner Bros. now has a Black female CEO. Shorts like The Warner Kids and Pinky and The Brain also return with new content. It's a clever way to see how the other characters are doing after meeting the Warner siblings.

The Warner siblings and the rest of the cast always find a way to have fun in each episode. The message of this series is to find a way to stay fun, positive and happy despite the craziness in the world. I will note that there are some scenes or jokes that viewers may not get unless they followed the original series, but you will still laugh.

Animaniacs is a great mix of kid-friendly education and slapstick comedy, deserving 5 out of 5 stars and a recommendation for ages 5 to 18. Adults are sure to love it too especially if they are fans of the original series. The new season of Animaniacs debuts on Hulu on November 20.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

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



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