Watch Kids' Reviews of
LEA'S SECRET

What to know: An important message about safety, even with your own family.
LEA
Recommended age 9-14
5 minutes
VIDEO
RICO GUTIERREZ
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LEA
Lea's Secret offers a powerful, important message about safety and growth. This is the sort of story that, unfortunately, all children should learn for their personal safety. It is a well animated film that addresses the reality of molestation that affects children worldwide. Though the theme is more mature and children may find some depictions scary, the message is important and would be appreciated by older tweens and teens.

The story is about Lea's secret and how she has a special power that helps her pass through closed doors. But that's not the only secret she harbors, and she finds her powers can't protect her all the time. She needs the support of adults around her. Lea is a young, impressionable girl in a scary situation. She uses her imagination to propel her to safety, but realizes that true safety is in the arms of those who care for her. The film, based on the children's book Ang Lihim Ni Lea is well made. The animation is excellent and, although I am unfamiliar with the book's illustrator, appear to be based on the original illustrations by Ghani Madueno. The color pallet shifts as the mood changes in the storyline and the fluidity of the change is excellent. The scene when Lea explains her situation to her teacher and counselor is beautifully created. At the same time, it is haunting and powerful. The background music is thoughtfully appropriate and it enhances the emotional journey of Lea so well. The tone shifts from pensive, to happy, to the fearful and then to hope, very seamlessly. The transition of Lea's recovery is fantastic. The music becomes sweeter, the dark colors fade and become brighter and we feel hopeful. Lea's paleness suddenly turns to warmth. That is a compelling and inspiring scene.

The message of this film is that you can't escape a bad situation by creating the illusion of escape. You need to reach out to real people who love you so they can keep you safe.

I give Lea's Secret 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 9 to 14, plus adults. It is a thoughtfully made film with high production quality and a powerful message that may very well save a child's life one day. It is from the Philippines with dialogue in Tagalog and English subtitles. Its message of molestation and familial bonds is universal. This would make an excellent addition to a festival that is focusing on psychological issues that children experience and how to deal with them.

Reviewed by Cassidy S., KIDS FIRST! Juror

Lea's Secret offers a powerful, important message about safety and growth. This is the sort of story that, unfortunately, all children should learn for their personal safety. It is a well animated film that addresses the reality of molestation that affects children worldwide. Though the theme is more mature and children may find some depictions scary, the message is important and would be appreciated by older tweens and teens.

The story is about Lea's secret and how she has a special power that helps her pass through closed doors. But that's not the only secret she harbors, and she finds her powers can't protect her all the time. She needs the support of adults around her. Lea is a young, impressionable girl in a scary situation. She uses her imagination to propel her to safety, but realizes that true safety is in the arms of those who care for her. The film, based on the children's book Ang Lihim Ni Lea is well made. The animation is excellent and, although I am unfamiliar with the book's illustrator, appear to be based on the original illustrations by Ghani Madueno. The color pallet shifts as the mood changes in the storyline and the fluidity of the change is excellent. The scene when Lea explains her situation to her teacher and counselor is beautifully created. At the same time, it is haunting and powerful. The background music is thoughtfully appropriate and it enhances the emotional journey of Lea so well. The tone shifts from pensive, to happy, to the fearful and then to hope, very seamlessly. The transition of Lea's recovery is fantastic. The music becomes sweeter, the dark colors fade and become brighter and we feel hopeful. Lea's paleness suddenly turns to warmth. That is a compelling and inspiring scene.

The message of this film is that you can't escape a bad situation by creating the illusion of escape. You need to reach out to real people who love you so they can keep you safe.

I give Lea's Secret 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 9 to 14, plus adults. It is a thoughtfully made film with high production quality and a powerful message that may very well save a child's life one day. It is from the Philippines with dialogue in Tagalog and English subtitles. Its message of molestation and familial bonds is universal. This would make an excellent addition to a festival that is focusing on psychological issues that children experience and how to deal with them.

Reviewed by Cassidy S., KIDS FIRST! Juror

When Lea and her father move in to their new condominium unit, she suddenly acquires the power to go through walls and closed doors. She doesn't tell anyone about it-- not even her mother who works as a nurse in London. At school, Lea tries out her newfound power to no avail. Taking note of her strange behavior, Teacher Cynthia reaches out and soon discovers that Lea's power is actually the ability to survive through the harrowing trauma of sexual molestation from her own father. This short animated film is based on the acclaimed children's book that aims to raise awareness on child sexual abuse, and empower victimized children to seek help and tell their stories.
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