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 In the end, Little Wolf decides not to follow outdated rules of proper wolf behavior but to be true to himself.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

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

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

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

The message of the film is to be yourself by being good, even if being good is bad. I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 9. This DVD is available now so, be sure to check it out. REviewed by Kamryn B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Little Wolf's Book of Badness, directed by Karsten Kiilerich, is unique and unexpected! With its spiral of surprises, I never could predict what would happen in the next scene. The story also puts a twist on common fairy tales such as Three Little Pigs and Little Red Riding Hood.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


GREAT BRITISH BAKING SHOW, THE - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 12-18
Description - The delectable baking competition that has grown into a beloved international phenomenon returns for a fifth season. The program features the original cast of Mary Berry, Paul Hollywood, Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc, in a season never before seen in the U.S. Viewers will meet twelve of Britain's best amateur bakers who will don their aprons, enter the iconic tent and tackle culinary trials that increase in difficulty as the competition unfolds. Vying to be crowned star baker, challengers prepare three creations in each episode: a signature bake, which tests their creative flair and baking ability; the devilishly difficult technical challenge, in which contestants have to bake creations using only ingredient lists and minimal instruction; and finally, the showstopper, designed to fully showcase each baker's skill and creativity.

Contestants face the demanding but endearing judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood, two icons of British baking who are now household names in America. Comedy duo Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc are the series hosts, providing the bakers with much-needed emotional support and comic relief. Offering viewers the perfect sweet summer escape, this program features unforgettable contestants attempting some of the series most difficult challenges, from bagels to strudel, treacle tarts to choux gateaus.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Ready, set, Bake! This series of shows follows 12 amateur bakers, all of whom are hoping to win the competition and become Britain's best. There are two main judges - well-known Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood. It starts out with one of my favorite baked items - CAKE and at the end, someone is eliminated. Obviously, the worst of the 12 is axed. Each show focuses on a different baked item such as bread, tarts, pies and more. This is a very addictive show, meaning that you want to continue watching. It has humor and is quite intense. I also like that they give a little back story on each contestant. I found myself rooting for one or two of them, but I won't say which one because one of them wins. It is simply fun to watch and, if you actually love to bake (as I do), this is a must-see! I actually learned a few helpful tips. There are ten episodes, including the finale. I give this 5 out of 5 stars for its entertainment and educational value and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. Younger children who are interested in backing will also enjoy it, as well many adults. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult comments
Runtime: 550 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 19.99 Media: DVD


ENDEAVOUR: SEASON 5 - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 10-18
Description - As 1968 dawns, a year of change promises to disrupt the private and professional lives of Endeavour Morse (Shaun Evans) and his colleagues. Endeavour's recent promotion leads him to reluctantly mentor new recruit Fancy (Lewis Peek), while Thursday (Roger Allam) is beginning to think about life after the police. But in Oxford, crime never sleeps, and the team continues to be challenged by mysterious and intriguing cases of murder, greed, and deception. Meanwhile, the rise of organized crime in the city promises to change Oxford forever. When 1968 comes to a close, will things at Cowley Police Station ever be the same again?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is definitely not for young kids, but it is full of action and mystery. Adults who enjoy crime mysteries will find it entertaining and engaging. I really like the characters in this complete fifth season. My favorite is Endeavour Morse, of course. I like that he is paired up with a new rookie (recruit) and seems to be a bit bothered by the fact. The exchange between them adds to the entertainment factor. This series includes six mysteries and I like the 1960s time frame and how the mysteries are solved. There is definitely some violence and sexual content so I do not recommend it for children or young teens. I recommend it for ages 16 to 18, as well as adults, especially those who like crime mysteries. I give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult review
Runtime: 540 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 49.99 Media: DVD

KINGDOMS OF THE SKY
KINGDOMS OF THE SKY - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 7-18
Description - This landmark three-part series, presented in partnership with the BBC, reveals the extraordinary animals and remarkable people who make a home on the iconic mountain ranges of the world, including the Himalaya, the Rockies, and the Andes. Episodes for this program include: HIMALAYA - Meet the extraordinary wildlife and people of the Himalaya--the highest mountain range on earth, where the air is the thinnest, the wind the strongest, the storms the fiercest. The higher you climb, the tougher it gets to survive. See snub-nosed monkeys, snow leopards on the prowl, and Tibetan monks performing ancient rituals high in the mountains. ROCKIES - The Rockies stretch 3000 miles across a beautiful wilderness of snow-capped peaks and hidden valleys. It is home to cougars, wolverines, wolves, and grizzlies, and where daredevil wingsuit fliers jump from high peaks and Native Americans compete in breakneck horse races. ANDES - The longest mountain range on the planet holds dozens of hidden worlds, from the driest desert on Earth to cloud forests teeming with life. Pumas hunt guanaco, shape-shifting frogs hide in remote forests, and the descendants of Inca build bridges of grass. Magnificent snow sculptures, huge salt lakes, and spectacular peaks are all found in these rugged peaks.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This amazing DVD has three main themes: Himalaya, Rockies and Andes. It shows amazing scenes which includes wildlife and people. I love the Himalaya and learning about the snub-nosed monkeys and the snow leopards. My favorite things about all three places was learning about all the amazing animals. The scenes are absolutely breath-taking and you can really imagine what it is like to be there. This DVD is educational and very entertaining. I learned so much about all three places. I recommend this show to anyone who loves to watch nature films and learn about different places and wildlife. I recommend it for ages 7 through 18, as well as adults. I give this 5 out of 5 stars for its educational and entertainment value.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult review
Runtime: 159 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 24.99 Media: DVD

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GAMECHANGERS: DREAMS OF BLIZZCON - 0
Series: DVD, AGES 12-18
Description - GAMECHANGERS: DREAMS OF BLIZZCON enters the unexplored realm of professional eSports, as told through the eyes of two of the world's best StarCraft II players. Together with striking visuals and a mesmerizing original score, go behind the scenes and experience the high-pressure, high-stakes lifestyles of professional gamers. DVD includes: 5.1 Surround, Stereo, English and Korean with English subtitles for the deaf and hearing-impaired.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - GameChangers: Dreams of BlizzCon focuses on the world of e-sports and the game StarCraft 2, which is a military science fiction, real-time strategy video game. The world of StarCraft has become a competitive one and this documentary follows two of the world's best StarCraft 2 players and their journey from South Korea to BlizzCon, located in Anaheim. I was not expecting this film to be in-depth at all, but it is shockingly informative and entertaining. We learn about their life experiences and how it has shaped them into the well-known players they are today. It is absolutely enthralling watching them discuss the difficulties keeping up with the younger players and the personal challenges they face in their own lives. The idea of becoming wealthy because of becoming successful at StarCraft is shocking and fun. My children were intrigued about the idea of becoming professional gamers. The production value is really good and I really enjoyed watching this. While I believe that this film is more interesting for adults, I believe that children ages 15 to 18 will really enjoy it. I give it 5 out of 5 stars for being super interesting! Reviewed by Rachael Vickers, KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult review
Runtime: 91 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 19.95 Media: DVD

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FLOOGALS: PROJECT BIRTHDAY CAKE

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FLOOGALS: PROJECT BIRTHDAY CAKE
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FLOOGALS: PROJECT BIRTHDAY CAKE - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 3-7
Description - Each day, Captain Fleeker, First Officer Flo, and Junior Boomer encounter something that sparks their curiosity, setting in motion the day's research "project" and triggering an exciting adventure! In Project Birthday Cake, Boomer's built a little fizzerific food finder attachment for his Fizzer controls.�It's supposed to be able to sniff out food - a subject close to Boomer's heart.�Flying by a massive birthday cake the food finder goes out of control and Boomer crashes. The Floogals have to work out how to re-make the frosting and in the process find out what a birthday cake and decorations are for.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Small alien life forms, the Floogals, explore life in an everyday home setting with a particular family, where they discover certain human objects such as birthday cake, ice (for beverages), roller skates and a record player. The most fascinating and unusual part of this series is the background setup - the house is life action as well as the family members (mother, father, and kids). Think of this as a family sit-com. The Floogal characters are done in claymation. They take interest in particular objects located upstairs, downstairs, in the basement, the bathroom, kitchen and elsewhere.

I like the originality of having the real-life backgrounds juxtaposing with the animated characters. The episode with the record player is particularly funny, since it is an older generational way of listening to music. Young children might be as clueless as the Floogals with regards to this "strange object," more so than any other object they explore.

This DVD consists of approximately nine, 8 minute episodes. I recommend this for ages 3 to 6 who will find it really fascinating for expanding their imagination (with every room the Floogals explore) and keep their attention with the pastel-type colors. Curious slightly older kids might tune in for the same reasons. I give this DVD 5out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - These educational episodes are great for younger kids to learn practical things. The animation is colorful, detailed, and the characters, besides the "hoomans" or humans, are unique looking creatures. It is also interesting to look at the human household and human items, from their smaller point of view.

In these episodes, there are three main alien-like characters. Their names are Captain Fleeker, Junior Boomer and First Officer Flo. They live hidden inside the hooman's house. Fleeker, Boomer and Flo explore around house and try to learn more about the hooman ways. They encounter a birthday cake, some ice, a mirror, a banana, a toothbrush, sand, roller skates, a record player and a jewelry box.

Jules de Jongh voices Flo with authority and wisdom. Even though Flo isn't the Captain, you can tell that she knows what she is talking about and that she is more mature than the other two boys. Junior Boomer is the complete opposite of Flo. His name fits him as he has a lot more to learn than Flo and Fleeker. Hugo Harold-Harrison aptly portrays, through his voice, that Junior Boomer is a lot younger and more immature.

They use a mix of animation and live camera shots for these episodes. This brings the Floogals to life as they venture outside their ship. It is interesting to look at the world we know so familiarly from a completely different point of view. To Fleeker, Boomer and Flo everything looks weird and abnormally large. It's like entering a modern giant's house.

My favorite scene is when they first discover the birthday cake. Their facial expressions are so in awe of this great smelling piece of art in front of them. The birthday cake is based on outer space and looks very delicious and colorful. This is my favorite scene because it really is where the Floogals come to life.

There isn't a moral or message in these episodes. Their main purpose is to educate younger viewers about the properties of everyday items and how to use them. For example, in the episode "Project Ice," the Floogals teach viewers that ice can be used to keep things cool, but when it gets hot, it melts back into water.

This DVD offers great learning tools for younger viewers. I recommend it for ages 3 to 5 and give it 5 out of 5 stars for the effort put into it. It is available on DVD now, so check it out!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-6 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD


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CAT IN THE HAT KNOWS A LOT ABOUT THAT! SEASON 2, VOLUME 2
CAT IN THE HAT KNOWS A LOT ABOUT THAT! SEASON 2, VOLUME 2 - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 4-12
Description - The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! follows the adventures of 6-year-old best friends, Sally and Nick, as they are whisked off on extraordinary voyages of scientific discovery with the Cat in the Hat. �Thanks to the Thinga-ma-jigger and our friends, exploring has never been more exciting! Enjoy the second volume of the second season of The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! In this volume set, kids will learn the answers to questions like what is the Earth's atmosphere, why do we need bones, and how is paper made. The discoveries don't end there! We learn how polar bears survive the arctic winter, how our ears work and so much more!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I'm a big fat of The Cat in the Hat! I have been since I was a little girl. Now, as an adult, I'm still a big fan! This DVD does not disappoint! It has 20 episodes! Directed by Tony Collingwood, the Cat in the Hat (Martin Short) definitely shows us that he knows a lot about many things from names and locations of the planets in our solar system to how animals walk with more than two legs. It is entertaining, engaging and great for preschool and school aged children, as well as their parents. Children will enjoy watching the Cat in the Hat and his friends Sally & Nick as they go on adventures to learn new things. One of my favorite episodes is about the solar system as the Cat in the Hat teaches Sally & Nick the order of the planets and their names. Martin Short as the voice of Cat in the Hat is perfect! I just love him. I also enjoyed the theme song. I give this 5 stars out of 5 stars, because I think it is a perennial hit. It's engaging, entertaining and educational What more could you want! I recommend it for ages 3 to 12. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - coming soon
Runtime: 220 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: DVD

FRONTLINE: TRUMP'S TAKEOVER
FRONTLINE: TRUMP'S TAKEOVER - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12 - 18
Description - President Donald Trump's first year in office has been marked by ongoing turmoil - including in his own Republican party, where presidential tweetstorms, inflammatory rhetoric and high-profile dissent have fueled open conflict. Gripping and revealing, this program tells the story of Trump's takeover of the Republican Party - from the perspective of Republican lawmakers and insiders themselves. TRUMP'S TAKEOVER examines the president's unorthodox governing style, showing how after taking office, he displayed a lack of interest in the ins and outs of legislation and policy, and instead took to Twitter, attacking opponents. The film goes behind closed doors in the negotiations to repeal and replace Obamacare -- Trump's first major legislative test -- revealing through accounts of people who were there how little Trump seemed to understand or care about the details of the bill.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - You either love him or hate him., or so it seems. I have to be honest and say I actually cried when Donald Trump became the 45th President. And those were not happy tears. This documentary shows a brief story of how President Trump took over the Republican party. His campaign seemed to be fueled by anger and his anger, more than anything, was directed at the establishment. This film shows how there was fighting among the Republican party itself and how Donald Trump was most concerned about "the win." One of my favorite parts of the movie is when John McCain took a stand and said to the President, "You're not a king. You're the President." This film also shows his racism and anger and his over-tweeting. And, it shows how he succeeded as being the leader when the Tax Cut Bill was passed. This film is well done and, although it doesn't show the President in the most favorable light, I feel it is quite truthful. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
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Runtime: 56 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 17.99 Media: DVD

NOVA: WONDERS, SEASON 1
NOVA: WONDERS, SEASON 1 - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 11-18
Description - NOVA: WONDERS is a fresh, lively series that makes complicated concepts accessible while taking a deep dive into the scientific process. Each episode poses a big scientific question and takes viewers along on a journey to explore how far we've come in our quest for answers, and how we've managed to get here. Among the intriguing topics pondered are the secret language of animals, what's hidden in the human body, the artificial intelligence technologies that could rival and surpass the abilities of the human mind, the controversial power to engineer life in a lab, and the mysteries of the universe.

The program travels to some unexpected places to look for answers -- including deep underwater, where humpback whales are essentially playing a game of "telephone" across the world, with pods teaching each other new songs; deep beneath our skin, where trillions of microbes are living in our bodies; deep below the earth, in mines where researchers are trying to detect elusive dark matter particles; deep into space, where astrophysicists are hunting for signs of extra-terrestrial life, and more.

Three young scientists serve as enthusiastic guides and science communicators. Talithia Williams is a mathematician and statistician who also applies data models to the human body and the environment. She is joined by co-hosts Rana el Kaliouby, a computer scientist developing emotion recognition technology used in artificial intelligence, and Andr� Fenton, a neuroscientist studying the biology of memory. All three set-up the inquiry, demonstrate key aspects of the challenges facing scientists, and ask provocative questions about research carried out on the winding paths of uncertainty and the unknown.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - If you are looking to be amazed, this is the DVD to watch! It is interesting, educational and simply amazing. Each episode answers a scientific question. There are two discs and the questions they address are: What are animals saying? Can we build a brain? What's living in you? Are we alone? Can we make life? What's the Universe made of? Such interesting questions and the answers will mesmerize you. There are three main scientists featured in the series, but there are many other people involved in all the various research and studies. There is even someone who studies the sex life of spiders. My favorite (maybe it is because I am such the animal lover) is the episode, "What are animals saying?" It takes such a fresh approach to language and it's not about whether or not animals can learn our language but can we understand their language. I learned that in many ways, we can understand their language and it is not all vocal or verbal language, but there is a lot of nonverbal communication. Just from one episode, I learned so much about chimpanzees, whales, dogs, spiders and bats! Did you know that spiders mate only once or that a whale's song can last from 5 to 30 minutes? These are only two of the amazing facts I learned. I give this series 5 stars out of 5 stars and highly recommend it for ages 11 to 18, as well as adults. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult review
Runtime: 360 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 11-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 19.99 Media: DVD


RWANDA: THE ROYAL TOUR
RWANDA: THE ROYAL TOUR - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 10-18
Description - In this one-hour documentary, viewers follow host Peter Greenberg as he explores the country known as the "land of a thousand hills." President Paul Kagame proves to be the ultimate guide as he shows Greenberg the visual gems his country has to offer. Together, Greenberg and Mr. Kagame go gorilla trekking through Volcanoes National Park, jet-skiing in Lake Kivu, and exploring Nyungwe Forest National Park on an elevated canopy walkway. Finally, they observe a variety of wildlife during a safari through Akagera National Park.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This entertaining travelogue of the African country of Rwanda finds amiable host Peter Greenburg joined by the country's beloved President Paul Kagame as they hike a mountain forest to see gorillas in the wild, cross a wobbly canopy bridge two hundred feet above the forest floor and visit a tea estate. President Kagame, who brought the nation out of an infamous civil war to peace and relative prosperity, proves a charismatic guide and one gets a substantial, if general sense of the country's culture, landmarks and terrain. Missing is any exploration of Rwandan daily life but the emphasis here is squarely on the culture and very recent history. The 55-minute program, an episode of the PBS series Royal Tour, is distinguished by outstanding camera work, giving viewers a nice sense of being along for the tour. A short behind-the-scenes video gives a brief glimpse into the crew behind the cameras. Recommended for ages 8 to 18 and older. I give it 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Michael F., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
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Runtime: 55 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 19.99 Media: DVD

AMERICAN MASTERS: TED WILLIAMS, THE GREATEST HITTER WHO EVER LIVED
AMERICAN MASTERS: TED WILLIAMS, THE GREATEST HITTER WHO EVER LIVED - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10 - 18
Description - During his remarkable career with the Boston Red Sox, Ted Williams earned many nicknames - The Kid, The Splendid Splinter and Teddy Ballgame, but the only nickname that he wanted was "the greatest hitter who ever lived." In that pursuit, he combined his preternatural gifts with a fierce work ethic to become widely regarded as one of the greatest ever to play the game of baseball and in the process elevated the science of hitting in ways still emulated today. Through never-before-seen archival footage and in-depth interviews with those who knew and studied Williams, including his daughter Claudia Williams, author/journalist Ben Bradlee, Jr., veteran baseball writer Roger Angela, and award-winning broadcasters Bob Costas and the late Dick Enberg, the program demonstrates the power of the heroic myth-making culture in which Williams flourished. Lesser-known topics explored in the eh film include Williams' Mexican-American background, his experiences serving during World War II and the Korean War, and his deep rage over his mother's virtual abandonment of him and his younger brother.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This nicely-paced American Masters program, narrated by actor Jon Hamm, expertly dives into the story of baseball great Ted Williams, who played for the Boston Red Sox in the 1940s and 50s. Archival footage is interspersed with interviews with sportscasters, family members and Williams himself to present a well-rounded portrait of the ball player's complicated adult life. Dedicating himself to the science of batting, Williams earned his nickname while displaying a difficult personality that put him at odds with family, friends and the press. The tightly-structured program does an admirable job of covering other major areas of his life, most notably his time in the military that culminated with him becoming a celebrated fighter pilot during the Korean War. The hour-long show excels at presenting Williams' return to the game after the war as well as the day he bowed out from his career on an awe-inspiring note by hitting one last home run. Along the way, the program documents his stubbornness in refusing to tip his hat to the crowd whenever he hit a home run, finally doing so in a ceremony years after he retired. The show should have great appeal to baseball fans though many may wish for a more in-depth description of Williams's science of batting. The DVD includes extras in the form of four short but illuminating stories about Williams that help round out the portrait. Warning: Contains some strong language. Recommended for ages 14 to 18 and older. 4 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Mike F., KIDS FIRST! Juror
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Runtime: 60 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: DVD

NATURE CAT: ONWARD AND PONDWARD - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DVD, AGES 5-10
Description - Streams, swamps, ponds, and more! Go Onward and Pondward with everyone's favorite backyard explorer extraordinaire, Nature Cat! Along with his friends Hal, Squeeks, and Daisy, the team learns where a stream begins and explores new environments along the way. These are a few of the seven fun-filled outdoor adventures you do not want to miss! Tally Ho!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This fun and educational DVD includes ?seven stories about Nature Cat and his friends Hal,? ?Squeeks and Daisy. I like that ?it ?teaches about things such as where a stream begins and ends and really focuses on Earth Day. I have to say that the Earth Day episodes ?are my favorite?. I love how it shows how bad plastic bags ?are for the environment. Children will love the silly characters, fun music and ?all the adventures. It truly explores nature and encourage?s? children to go out?, explore and have their own adventures in ?nature. I give this 4.5 out of 5 ?stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 7. It is thoroughly engaging, entertaining and educational. There are no major extras on the DVD?,? but there are previews of other DVD?s. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
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Runtime: 80 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: DVD

KIDS FIRST ALL STAR

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THOMAS EDISON'S SECRET LAB: IT'S ALWAYS SHARKEST (2018)
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THOMAS EDISON'S SECRET LAB: IT'S ALWAYS SHARKEST (2018) - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 8 - 15
Description - Unknown to the world, Thomas Edison built a secret lab where he invented a virtual version of himself and a steampunk robot named Von Bolt. Years later, Angie, a twelve-year-old science prodigy, discovers the lab. Join Angie and friends as they learn and explore a variety of science topics from a shark s sense of smell to plants and pollinator s roles to radioactive decay to DNA and more! While visiting one of Kent s relatives, the kids come up with a great idea for attracting more tourists to his restaurant - the only catch is that it also attracts a very big shark with very big teeth! What will the Secret Lab Kids do? Guided by fun-loving Edison, Angie and friends will show just how fun science can be!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is a great DVD! Watching this team of kids makes you see the value of science and helping others. They provide positive role models for the viewer as you see them think, behave as friends and students of science. I appreciate the mentions of Thomas Edison and Charles Darwin, as well as others. Watching this made me want to learn more, so I imagine young children will feel inspired to discover "scientific motives" to resolve issues in their everyday lives. This DVD made me think, laugh and want massive amounts of garlicky fried chicken! I really appreciate the music video that informs kids about the real dangers of sharks, while teaching about them, their DNA and what makes them hunt thousand of miles a year for food. The Secret Lab kids tackle problems, transform a business owner, and benefit their community in a big way. They are very smart and friendly. They travel through a teleport, shrink in size and have a very cool yet informative chat with Thomas Edison.

Sharks are one of the most popular types of fish, but they're dangerous too. Learning about them, in an informative but not as scary way, is fun. Sharks, science, cartoon characters and lab experiences are all included in this DVD. We see a shark being lured up a mega slide that the kids help build, in hopes for a piece of famous fried chicken. The colors are bright. The motion from the wind gadgets, teleport and even the non-fat garlic butter dripping from the slide look appealing. The only thing I would change, because I am a fan of fried chicken, is to add more of a crunch sound since this chicken is supposedly so good! There is a menu that helps you selecting a certain episode or play everything. The DVD cover shows each episode title as well. There is a bonus segment but I did not see different language options.

This DVD flows well and has tons of educational benefits. I learned that sharks can smell one part of blood per every million parts of water. The social benefits are endless. There are some jokes and phrases that I, as an adult found comical and relatable, such as "ultimate negative vibes." I should mention that some of the characters sound a bit stuffy so it took a replay to hear the names clearly. The music video and breakdown from Charles Darwin to Thomas Edison to Von Bolt provides a helpful recap of scientific terms and facts.

Even if you're not into science, there are plenty of informative, eye-opening, and music moments to enjoy. I recommend it for ages 8 to 12 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. I felt good after watching this movie and I believe kids will too. All I can say is that I want to watch more episodes. Reviewed by Elle S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: It's Always Sharkest is an entertaining DVD that helps children find fun in learning about science related topics.

This DVD contains eight episodes. The series follows a group of children who find the famous scientist Thomas Edison's secret lab, where he built a virtual version of himself as well as a robot named Von Bolt. Each episode includes a science related topic that teaches us about things such as DNA or a shark's sense of smell.

This is the second DVD I have watched from this series and, I must say, they are lots of fun. The episodes are very informative and perfect for kids interested in science. There are a couple of different famous scientists that appear in the episodes, including John B. Watson and Charles Darwin. They help teach the kids about the different topics. It's nice seeing a children's DVD that is both funny and informative. There are lots of silly jokes embed throughout the episodes, which makes the episodes much more humorous. I am not in the target age for this DVD, but I would thoroughly enjoy it if I was younger. Believe it or not, I actually learned some things about sharks that I had no idea about! The episodes are short and sweet, which helps hold the audience's attention. Some children's TV shows tend to drag on for a long time, but these episodes are a perfect length at less than 15 minutes long.

I absolutely love the fun songs in this DVD. In each episode, there is a music video at the end of the episode. The songs are very upbeat and usually have a very catchy tune. The songs relate to what is being taught or something that relates to the episode we just watched. The songs bring lots of lightness to the series, which is perfect for a younger audience. The songs definitely will get the kids up and dancing.

The animation brings a lot of character to the show. When animated programs have an overwhelming amount of colors and precision detail, it's difficult for children to focus on what the show is trying to teach. This series has calm, relaxing colors and pretty basic looking characters. I think that helps kids stay focused.

I found this series fun and entertaining. The storylines are interesting. The characters have great personalities. It all makes learning fun. I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 9 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. This DVD is out now so, look for it.

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

This DVD is a collection of episodes from the slightly odd TV series, Thomas Edison's Secret Lab. It includes lots of science, but makes it interesting enough that you are not be bored. It features Thomas Edison as a hologram, a robot called Van Bolt and kids named JD, Angie, Nicky and Kent.

In each of the eight episodes, the kids find a problem that seems unsolvable such as when their hamster starts growing rapidly in "Mutant Mascot." They go through the Virtual Reality Window, which instantly transports them to a scientist who helps them. They usually end up finding a scientific solution.

Even though the whole series is built upon facts, the unrealistic parts make for some of the appeal. The talking shark in "It's Always Sharkest" is so amusing that you will not care about the strangeness. The giant slime monster in "Slime Time!" is also fun.

The scientific factoids are explained clearly so you will not forget them easily! Unlike actual teachers, the characters do not talking directly to you. I find it easier to learn when I feel "invisible." Other kids might feel this way as well.

I think this is an amazing TV series and DVD of select episodes. It has just the right balance of fact vs. fiction and is chock-full of science. The plots have twists that keep you hooked until the very end! I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 10. If you are a kid who loves science or a parent who wants your child to learn something, check this out! It's available now in the usual places.

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

Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: It's Always Sharkest is a really good blend of entertaining content mixed with lessons about science. This show is the perfect thing for kids to watch during summer break, because it is entertaining and yet, kids will also learn a lot. I watched this DVD during my summer break and learned a lot from watching it.

Thomas Edison's Secret Lab is an animated TV series that teaches science to kids through entertaining episodes that are filled with adventure and fun. Thomas Edison is a hologram and the main characters can talk to him. The shows are all about science, but they are also funny and have lots of interesting characters who learn about science or are expert scientists. There is a group of kids named Angie, JD, Kent and Nicky who are the stars of the show. They are kids who are just a little bit older than me and work very well as a team, figuring out problems.

In each episode there are different stories and every single one explains how something works. When I watched the shows, I learned how something works or why it happens. The stories taught me a lot and they also have lots of factoids, which I really like. I love factoids! The lessons are very good. I think watching these shows can actually help kids understand what is taught in their science classes in school.

The animation is a bit simple compared to other flashy, animated shows. Also there are music videos between the episodes, which I found a little bit bizarre. But, they sort of wrap up the lesson that was taught in the previous episode.

Even though I learned a lot from this DVD, I also had fun. That is what makes it so easy to watch a bunch of these episodes in a row. This DVD definitely kept me entertained for a long time. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 10. It is available on DVD now, so look for it.

By Izzy C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

Thomas Edison's Secret Lab: It's Always Sharkest is an entertaining DVD that helps children find fun in learning about science related topics.

This DVD contains eight episodes. The series follows a group of children who find the famous scientist Thomas Edison's secret lab, where he built a virtual version of himself as well as a robot named Von Bolt. Each episode includes a science related topic that teaches us about things such as DNA or a shark's sense of smell.

This is the second DVD I have watched from this series and, I must say, they are lots of fun. The episodes are very informative and perfect for kids interested in science. There are a couple of different famous scientists that appear in the episodes, including John B. Watson and Charles Darwin. They help teach the kids about the different topics. It's nice seeing a children's DVD that is both funny and informative. There are lots of silly jokes embed throughout the episodes, which makes the episodes much more humorous. I am not in the target age for this DVD, but I would thoroughly enjoy it if I was younger. Believe it or not, I actually learned some things about sharks that I had no idea about! The episodes are short and sweet, which helps hold the audience's attention. Some children's TV shows tend to drag on for a long time, but these episodes are a perfect length at less than 15 minutes long.

I absolutely love the fun songs in this DVD. In each episode, there is a music video at the end of the episode. The songs are very upbeat and usually have a very catchy tune. The songs relate to what is being taught or something that relates to the episode we just watched. The songs bring lots of lightness to the series, which is perfect for a younger audience. The songs definitely will get the kids up and dancing.

The animation brings a lot of character to the show. When animated programs have an overwhelming amount of colors and precision detail, it's difficult for children to focus on what the show is trying to teach. This series has calm, relaxing colors and pretty basic looking characters. I think that helps kids stay focused.

I found this series fun and entertaining. The storylines are interesting. The characters have great personalities. It all makes learning fun. I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 9 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. This DVD is out now so, look for it.

Reviewed by Talia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DIGIMON TRI ADVENTURE: COEXISTENCE

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DIGIMON TRI ADVENTURE: COEXISTENCE
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DIGIMON TRI ADVENTURE: COEXISTENCE - SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 8 - 15
Description - THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES...The arrival of the super powerful Meicoomon starts a countdown to the real world's collapse. The DigiDestined are cast out of the Digital World, and even after returning to the real world, are driven away by people, due to their partnerships with the Digimon. Meanwhile, a cruel fate appears imminent for Kari, who has a more honest and sensitive spirit than anyone.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The storyline in this episode, about dark forces taking over, flows well. There are no long lagging sequences. The viewer will empathize with the protagonist Kari and the evil force overtaking Meicoomon. Created in Japanese anime style, Digimon-tri has sharp-edge graphics and action sequences that draws the viewers in. The storyline addresses the struggles that many of us have to deal with, but shows how there are friends to help along the way. Some might be even be going through something similar.

This entire series is very good at displaying consequences of both negative or positive behavior. It also displays excellent problem solving behavior. Watching this show might convince viewers to seek out others when they are going through tough times. The message is that life has complicated challenges but you can overcome them.

The vocabulary and concepts are suitable for the intended age group and could further enhance vocabulary and concepts the viewer does not understand. A good example of portraying social models is when the main protagonist feels that she might be responsible for a specific situation. One of the other main characters reassures her that this definitely isn't the case. This entire series is very good in displaying consequences of either negative or positive behavior.

The DVD menu allows scene selections, subtitles and a bonus feature interview.

You should be aware that at one point, a character pulls out a gun, but is no blast, and at another point we see a powerful being shaped somewhat like a naked woman. For that reason I give it 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, as well as adults. I would raise the highest age to 25 if I could, because it is so thought-provoking and intellectual.

Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Digimon Adventure Tri 5: Coexistence is an enjoyable show that I loved.

This animated film is the fifth sequel to the Digimon Adventures and it definitely builds a lot from the previous films.

The story is about how Meicoomon becomes a vicious creature, thus creating a perilous fight between the real world and the digital world.

My favorite part about this film is the authenticity of the characters and their emotions. It might sound weird that the animated characters are able to display a significant amount of passion and care for other characters in the film, but they do. Their emotions and reactions allow me to see past the drawings and the unlikelihood of this scenario.

My least favorite part is the style of the animation. The artwork looks like any main stream anime. The graphics didn't really hook me or caught my attention. Even the action and the fighting scenes are uneventful. They look somewhat dull and downplayed. I was looking forward to more intense explosions or epic toe-to-toe fighting scenes, but there is only a glimpse of exciting action throughout the whole film.

I give this DVD 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 14. It is available now so, look for it.

Reviewed by Raquel Y., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Runtime: 80 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 24.97 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ALL STAR

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MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC: RARITY
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MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC: RARITY - SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - Friendship Is In Fashion! welcome to the Carousel Boutique, home of Ponyville's own fashionista -- not to mention Spike's #1 crush -- Rarity! But in addition to being up-to-date on the latest trends and styles, Rarity is particularly known for her generosity. See for yourself, as Rarity, along with her best friends, Twilight Sparkle, Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, Applejack, Fluttershy and, of course, Spike, prepare for the Grand Galloping Gala, search for the loveliest of gems, investigate crimes, and more!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This very wildly entertaining series is based off a sassy and sophisticated pony, Rarity. It's easy to consider her as a fan favorite, because she is a trend setter, go getter and very creative character. There are plenty of cameos of primary cast members, so this DVD appeals to a wide audience. The show has so many characters with powers, big personalities and lots of problem solving that children will enjoy. All the characters encounter circumstances and challenges, yet remain positive, honest, fair and friendly.

This DVD starts out by showing us a very patient Rarity going through drastic measures to prepare for an upcoming fashion show. Things don't go as planned. Most people will relate to putting others first or being flat out embarrassed which makes this completely relatable. Episode 2 is filled with suspense and action. Rarity is in sudden danger due to some greedy diamond dogs that want to strip her of her magical advantages. You won't believe how she strategically deals with these dogs. Episode 3 is about mystery and fashion. Lastly, episodes 4 and 5 really tie together nicely because they focus on internal beauty and lasting relationships.

The production is bright and colorful with excellent animation. The menu allows you to play separate episodes or all at once. It is only available in English as there are no other language choices to make. There are no bonus features. It does teach some practical skills such as sewing in Episode One. Episodes Two through Five address lots of pro-social behaviors and fashionable commentary. The comedic timing is extraordinarily entertaining as are the fun songs about friendship. The message of this show is about being true to your self, accepting of change and to learn more about what is pleasing inside of you.

I rate this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. There are lessons to be learned in every episode, a fun sing-a-long and an overall loving and joyous show.

By Elle S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love how My Little Pony always teaches kids different lessons and morals in an interesting scenario. It is always intriguing to watch. These episodes teach deep messages that are crucial to know.

This DVD is mainly about Rarity and some of the challenges she goes through. The other ponies make appearances and help her through her problems, but sometimes they are the cause. It is fascinating to see all of the ponies' different takes on how the problems should be solved. They each have unique personalities, which sometimes clash, but may also be beneficial. This DVD is perfect to teach many great morals.

Rarity is either super confident or super stressed out. Tabith St. Germain, the voice of Rarity, articulates these emotions really well, while maintaining the sophisticated character that Rarity is. St. Germain is the perfect voice for this character. Fluttershy (Andrea Libman) is the kind of character who is very quiet, sounds very timid and doesn't use very much expression. Even though she is quite reserved, you can still sense her emotions. With the help of animating Fluttershy's face, we are able to see Fluttershy's emotions. Libman's voice over goes from very quiet and reserved to a whole other range of emotions.

Rarity's costumes are quite beautiful. They are unique to her personality, but with a little twist. I love the dresses that she comes up with, as well as the "ugly" dresses that the ponies closely monitor the making of. I thought it was so interesting to see the ponies' characteristics and personalities come out even more in the ugly dress.

My favorite scene in this DVD is when Rarity shows off the dresses she likes in her fashion show and, when asked who is the designer, she confidently struts out in a dress of her own. On the contrary, everyone hates the other dresses she showed the first time when she shamefully came out as the designer. I love this scene because, she is so happy to be the designer of her work the second time. The first time she tried to please her friends and that made a huge mess of her work.

The message of this DVD is all about working with other people, knowing you can't please everyone and forgiveness. Rarity learns all these lessons through her mistakes and the help of her friends. This DVD is very helpful for children experiencing problems of their own or just for learning new things. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 12. This is available on DVD now so look for it. Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Everyone clap your hands and get ready for a show! No, I don't mean just any show, I mean a fashion show by the one and only Rarity! This stunning and amazing pony is on a role, because in My Little Pony Friendship is Magic: Rarity she has brand new gowns and fabulous new looks, all while being a detective, a great sister and good friend. So, come on and let's see what Miss Rarity is up to now.

With this DVD, I got a Friendship card for National Friendship Day. I like it very much and can't wait to give it someone. After all, it is very cute and has the main six on it. If you have a friend who likes the show, you can bond over the card as well as the show. It is one of my favorites and I have quite a few friends who like it, because of the unique characters and storylines. Make sure to check out the sing-along so you can sing with Rarity and her friends.

The show's animation is very detailed. I sometimes feel like I'm a pony walking along the streets of Ponyville and Canterlot. Also, the town is just too adorable with all its bright colors and fun houses. This really adds eye candy. Young children will love the colors of the streets, as well as the ponies with their silly cutie marks on their flanks.

I enjoyed all the new episodes on this DVD, as well as some of the older ones, because we get Rarity (Tabitha St. Germain) for the kind, courteous and fabulous pony she truly is. They show her work life and her personal life so we see two different sides of her - one is very sweet and gentle towards the other ponies and her sister Sweetie Belle (Claire Margaret Corlett). The other side is very persuasive and passionate, but also full of flare and style, while making her outfits. Rarity is my pick of ponies, because she is not only a girly girl, but she is also a business woman and a magnificent friend.

My favorite episode on this DVD is "No Longer a Foal." I like this episode because it reminds me of my sister and how she sometimes thinks I'm a child (or in this case, a foal) and doesn't remember that I am 13! It also made me laugh when Sweetie Belle and Rarity take pictures and eat tiny ice creams.

I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 15 and give it 4� out of 5 stars. It is available on DVD and Digital now so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 110 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.98 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
BIG FISH & BEGONIA

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BIG FISH & BEGONIA
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BIG FISH & BEGONIA - SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 13-18
Description - Big Fish & Begonia is directed by Xuan Liang and Chun Zhang. Under the ocean is a mystical race of beings that control the tide and the changing of the seasons. One of these beings, a restless young girl named Chun, wants to experience the human world, not simply observe it. When she turns sixteen, she is allowed to transform into a dolphin to explore the human world. However, the world is a dangerous place. Trapped in a vortex, she is nearly killed but saved at the last minute by a human boy, who drowns as a result. Consumed by guilt, Chun decides to go on an epic adventure to give the boy life again. As protector of his soul, Chun must defeat those who stand in her way, including her own family. Special Features: Making-Of Documentary, the Short Film which inspired the Movie, Music Videos, and Theatrical Trailer Spoken Languages: English, Mandarin.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - An emotional masterpiece, Big Fish & Begonia is an artistically magical and thought provoking piece of anime. The animation is beautiful. I felt as if I was watching a classic painting come to life. The story is unforgettable. Each scene left my heart yearning for the characters to succeed.

The story follows a humble, brave girl name Chun who dedicates her life to help a kind boy, Kun, who gives his life to save hers after she travels from her magical to his human world. She goes to great lengths to bring him back and gives him all her love and care. However, when a variety of obstacles threaten Kun's survival, Chun risks everything to save him.

The animation is mystical and brings Chun's fantastical land to life. The characters from Chun's world are unique and their strange characteristics bring a special quality that is unlike other films. Many characters have a quirky addition such as antlers or a completely other-worldly face with multiple eyes. These subtle additions enhance the fresh and original elements the film specializes in. The backgrounds and scenery take the animation to the next level. The water and ocean play a huge role in the film and the animation transforms the water, displaying its beauty and importance. At night the ocean reflects the sky, its stars and the sublime hues present; while during the day it is almost invisible and many objects look like they are floating through air. One of the most notable animation feats is the scenery. In many favorite parts we see Chun running across landscapes and the camera captures her world in the most artistic way.

The emotions of this film left me in awe, showing the friendship and love these characters are capable of. In every scene, I was either smiling or in tears because of the sacrifices they make for each other and for each others' happiness. The music enhances the mood of these scenes with a mysterious and peaceful quality.

The messages of Big Fish and Begonia are: 1. If your conscience is clear, it doesn't matter what others think and 2. Follow your heart. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 14 to 18. Check out Big Fish and Begonia on DVD August 7, 2018.

By Sahiba K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 16
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - An emotional masterpiece, Big Fish & Begonia is an artistically magical and thought provoking piece of anime. The animation is beautiful. I felt as if I was watching a classic painting come to life. The story is unforgettable. Each scene left my heart yearning for the characters to succeed.

The story follows a humble, brave girl name Chun who dedicates her life to help a kind boy, Kun, who gives his life to save hers after she travels from her magical to his human world. She goes to great lengths to bring him back and gives him all her love and care. However, when a variety of obstacles threaten Kun's survival, Chun risks everything to save him.

The animation is mystical and brings Chun's fantastical land to life. The characters from Chun's world are unique and their strange characteristics bring a special quality that is unlike other films. Many characters have a quirky addition such as antlers or a completely other-worldly face with multiple eyes. These subtle additions enhance the fresh and original elements the film specializes in. The backgrounds and scenery take the animation to the next level. The water and ocean play a huge role in the film and the animation transforms the water, displaying its beauty and importance. At night the ocean reflects the sky, its stars and the sublime hues present; while during the day it is almost invisible and many objects look like they are floating through air. One of the most notable animation feats is the scenery. In many favorite parts we see Chun running across landscapes and the camera captures her world in the most artistic way.

The emotions of this film left me in awe, showing the friendship and love these characters are capable of. In every scene, I was either smiling or in tears because of the sacrifices they make for each other and for each others' happiness. The music enhances the mood of these scenes with a mysterious and peaceful quality.

The messages of Big Fish and Begonia are: 1. If your conscience is clear, it doesn't matter what others think and 2. Follow your heart. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 14 to 18. Check out Big Fish and Begonia on DVD August 7, 2018.

By Sahiba K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 16

Big Fish & Begonia is one of the prettiest animated films I have seen in a while. The characters have great development and personalities.

The film is about a girl named Chun who is part of a mystical race that controls the weather, change in seasons and the tides. Once she is 16, she can turn into a dolphin to experience ocean life in the human world. While there, she nearly gets killed when she gets caught in a net. The boy who saves her, dies in a whirlpool. Afterwards, she does everything in her power to take back his soul and take care of it.

The animation in the film is truly astonishing. The style reminds me of films such as Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro. I love the use of color during the whole movie. During the more serious parts, the colors become more muted. I love the way they show us Chinese culture in the animation. It reminds me of art pieces from earlier times in Chinese, but modernized.

The characters in this film have very defined personalities. Chun is so determined to keep the dolphin safe from her village. She feels very attached to it and that reminded me of a mother and a child. The dolphin also acts protectively of Chun. It's very beautiful to see two different creatures come together and love each other.

The plot very much relies on sacrifice and disaster to keep it going. What happens to her village is avoidable, but I think it's important to the story. It shows how much Chun cares about the dolphin and helps him get to the human world. When the dolphin comes back to help her get all the civilians out of the village, it shows how much he cares about Chun and the village, even though the village does not like him.

I rate this a 5 out of 5 and recommend this for ages 13 to 18, because of brief nudity. This film is available on DVD and Digital now so, check it out.

By Carla Paz, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13
Runtime: 105 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 13-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 26.99 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
SUPER 4: MEET RUBY

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SUPER 4: MEET RUBY
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SUPER 4: MEET RUBY - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 5-8
Description - Inspired by the world of PLAYMOBIL� toys, set out on a series of adventures with the Super 4 as they travel through the wider PLAYMOBIL� universes. Join Ruby and friends as they embark on 7 fun-filled pirate adventures! First, understand how Ruby came to be the amazing pirate she is. A wicker basket washes up on the shore of Gunpowder Island holding a little baby. Surprise, it's a girl! When Ruby is old enough to jump on ship to join in on a pirate raid, little Ruby sits on the sidelines and watches it all. To prove she is a real pirate, Ruby must set out to obtain a mythical treasure. Will she find it and become a true pirate? Find out in Meet Ruby!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Pirates! Who doesn't love a good pirate tale? That's the first thought that came to me when I saw the cover of this DVD. What adventures will she get into and, since girls were not allowed on pirate ships, will Ruby really become a pirate? The story of Ruby and her adoptive dad, Pirate Rubins is very interesting because stories of pirates usually begin with a pirate ship a sea, looking for treasures and other ships to capture. This story begins with a wicker basket washing up on the shore of Gunpowder Island holding a baby, a girl baby! Since Rubins is the pirate who finds her, he feels it is his duty to keep and raise her, hence he named her Ruby. He knows that he can't continue the life of a pirate and raise a daughter so he works and raises her the best he knows how. She hears so much about pirates while growing up she knows one day she will become a pirate. When the time comes for her to become a pirate, sets out to prove her worth to everyone, including her dad. The vocabulary and concepts are suitable for the intended audience. Most children have experienced a pirate phase at a young age and these episodes are exciting enough to hold their interest. Even though pirates are usually portrayed as villains, there are a lot of good pirates who help Ruby become the pirate she wants to be. Questioning, probing and problem-solving are encouraged in an appropriate manner. The episodes encourage lots of critical thinking and problem solving skills such as team work, asking questions, use of reasoning and logic. The animation is clear, easy to identify and quite colorful. The visuals are characteristic of the period of the pirate era. There are no menu access, chapters, nor special features. This is an adventure that will appeal to school age children between 5 and 10. I give it 5 out of 5 stars. It really is a must see! Reviewed by Tina B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This film has a great plotline and gives each character lots of personality. The plotline becomes even more interesting because of all the strong personalities. Even though this film is meant for younger ages, I still was quite entertained.

This film is all about meeting and getting to know who Ruby is. It starts from pirates discovering her as a baby, watching her go on adventures and figuring out who she wants to be. She goes off to the sea for the first time by herself and encounters problems. Eventually she is able to overcome them. She then goes off and solves multiple tests to be able to acquire treasure.

Laetitia Lefebvre has a determined and strong child-like voice which perfectly fits Ruby because Ruby has all of these traits. Ruby at times can sound very stubborn, scared, determined and strong. The Black Baron (Tom Wayland) sounds determined as well. The Black Baron is a very manipulative character and Wayland changes his voice accordingly. For example, he can sound convincing, caring and sweet, but also ominous.

The animation is very colorful and has lots of details. I also love that their faces express emotion and their body language does as well. The pirate costumes are very unique. I loved seeing all the different types of clothing that doesn't repeat for everyone.

My favorite scene is when Ruby smartly doesn't get distracted by the Black Baron when he wants to steal the treasure. I felt really proud of her and I knew that she was fit to become a knight.

The message of the story is to always believe in yourself no matter what. Ruby was born as a pirate, but girls aren't allowed to be pirates. Even though this is true, Ruby goes out and proves her worthiness. She encounters many problems, but stays strong and believes in herself. She stays determined every time. She doesn't stop continuing on her journey. Instead she just becomes stronger and fights even harder. This is a good message for female empowerment. Even though people want to limit you because you are a girl, don't let them. Do what Ruby does. Everyone is against her and she still manages to achieve all of her goals and become successful.

This DVD, just like the rest of the Super 4 series, is well made. It has a wonderful message and an entertaining plotline. I recommend this for ages 6 to 11 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. This is available on DVD now, so definitely check it out.

By Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13.
Runtime: 45 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
ABC MONSTERS: THE COMPLETE SEASON

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ABC MONSTERS: THE COMPLETE SEASON
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ABC MONSTERS: THE COMPLETE SEASON - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 2-5
Description - Enjoy the complete season of ABC Monsters! Embark on one phonics adventure after another while learning each letter of the alphabet in this complete set! Twenty six cuddly ABC Monsters live within the walls of Capital Castle. Each monster represents a letter of the alphabet but should any of the monsters go missing for longer than a day, all the letters will be wiped out from every book in Capital Town! So it's very important to make sure that all the ABC Monsters are safely back in Alphabet Gardens before the sun goes down. However, this isn't as easy as it sounds. The ABC Monsters are naturally curious creatures and often wander off from Alphabet Gardens to try and find new and fun items, inevitably getting themselves lost in the process. When Alice, Brian and Cherry Berry set out to find the ABC Monsters, they learn to spell multiple items that start with that ABC Monsters letter as well as play other phonics games and sing songs! Get set for a spellbinding series of magical adventures that engages the imagination all while making learning the alphabet exciting and entertaining!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - In the city of Capitol Castle live 26 adorable Alphabet Monsters. The city is full of fun and excitement. However, there is one sad fact - should a monster go missing for more than a day all of the letters disappear from all literature in Capitol Castle! Be prepared for tons of adventures and rescue missions. I have watched several volumes of ABC Monsters, but I was super excited to watch the complete season. Different episodes and volumes of this series feature a select few alphabet monsters, so you get a limited view of this very fun, living alphabet. Being able to sit down and watch the full season has been very enjoyable. Every single monster is different in both personality and look and they work so well with their pals Alice, Brian and Cherry Berry. Every episode focuses around trying to find a lost letter and discovering new things that just happen to start with the specific letter featured in the episode. There are plenty of fun and catchy song to sing along with. I genuinely love watching how the creators managed to make this so jam packed with educational opportunities and yet, so attention grabbing. It's wonderful! I love the cute animation and my toddler agrees. This is great for ages 3 to 6. This lovely series has earned itself 5 out of 5 stars! Reviewed by Rachael V., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror

Learning can be fun! ABC Monsters: Complete Series DVD is quite an exciting tool for learning the alphabet, learning new words large and small, solving puzzles, writing, learning about directions (north, south, east, west) and the characters teach children about the importance of teamwork. This series concentrates on the alphabet in a fun, lively and energetic way. It also helps with counting. Young children will enjoy singing along with Alice, Brian, Cherry Berry and all the letters when they sing the alphabet song. The song is repeated twice in each episode, bringing the audience back to the original focus of the show - learning the alphabet, writing the letters and learning new words. Each letter comes alive with their colorful outfits, colorful hair, hats, clothes, eyes and funny looking feet and hands. The songs also help with learning the alphabet, as well and learning new words, and finding the missing letters in the puzzle clues. I enjoyed watching this series and rate it 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 4 to 8. I know these kids will love this series.

Reviewed by Tina B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This delightful, animated series had me smiling the entire time. I learned how to read and write many years ago, but it was quite exciting to relearn both with the ABC Monsters. From the vibrant animation to exciting adventures and amusing characters, a child is sure to learn their phonics in no time. If you want to take a trip down memory lane, and enhance your vocabulary, let the ABC Monsters help you, because they make learning so much fun.

Set within the boundaries of Capital Castle, twenty six lovable and friendly ABC Monsters appreciate the beauty life has to offer. Each monster symbolizes a distinct letter of the alphabet. If one of the letters goes missing for longer than a day, everything becomes chaotic and every letter becomes erased from all of the books in Capital Town. Because of this, it is imperative that all twenty six letters are home in the Alphabet Gardens before sunset. However, it is an immense challenge to keep all of the letters in one place, since each letter is inquisitive and analytical about every situation, leading them to constantly wander off and explore as much as they can. The viewer joins Brian, Alice and Cherry Berry in finding the ABC Monsters, and watching them learn early language skills through sing-along videos and unforeseen circumstances.

Alice is such a sweet, little girl who loves adventures and meeting new people. She is not afraid to discover new places and enjoys a difficult challenge. Whenever a problem arises, she goes above and beyond to have the ABC Monsters back safely. Brian is Alice's best friend and one of the happiest people you will ever see. Given that he is from Capital Town, he often visits Alice at the castle and always has intriguing questions to ask. He and Alice both are more than eager to correctly solve puzzles and games that are very prominent in their daily lives. Cherry Berry is a lovely Court Jester in Capital Castle who cheers on Alice and Brian as they try their best to find the ABC Monsters. She becomes ecstatic when they get a puzzle correct and will flip and do multiple cartwheels to demonstrate her excitement. Since I used to be a gymnast, Cherry Berry is easy to relate to, and she makes tumbling look so easy. I wish she could teach me how to be a better gymnast.

The animation in this series is beyond adorable. Each letter has a different personality and appearance, which I greatly admire. No matter who you are or what you believe in, you are sure to fall in love with one of the twenty six letters. My favorite part of this series has to be seeing King Wordy in action. He is Alice's dad and he never puts a book down. He reminds me of my sister who loves to read. It amazes me how some people love reading so much, but others do not. You are sure to love King Wordy, because he is hilarious and a great dad to Alice.

The message of the series is to never give up in any situation. As long as you have friends and the will to persevere, nothing is impossible. Reading and writing are essential in everyday life. Even if it is not your cup of tea, there are ways to make it fun. Just ask the ABC Monsters!

I give this series 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 10. Although it is intended for a very young audience, it is a fantastic, comedic series to watch with your entire family because, no matter how old you are, there is always something new to learn about the alphabet. ABC Monsters: The Complete Season is available on DVD now so check it out. Find out which letter you truly are.

Reviewed by Samantha M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 18

ABC Monsters: The Complete Season is a fun and educational experience for young kids. It inspires them to learn, enjoy learning and even encourages them to participate in physical activity. It is creative and interesting all the way through. If I was a parent, I would use this DVD to help me teach my kid about the alphabet and early language skills.

I have reviewed other episodes of ABC Monsters previously and enjoy how each episode is different. For example, one of the episodes is based on introducing kids to the letter "A." In this episode, the Alphabet Monsters are so excited about the archery competition when suddenly, all the arrows go missing! Alice, Bryan and Cherry Berry (the protagonists) go on a mission to find the missing arrows and the missing letter of the alphabet, which just so happens to be Letter "A." On the way, they go on a lot of mini quests such as helping Amy the Alligator find her armband and help Farmer Alex find his apple. At the end of the episode, Alice, Bryan and Cherry Berry review everything we learned in the episode and include fun little songs and dances for us to do and sing.

Everything about this show is child friendly and appropriate for a young age group. The storylines are consistent without being repetitive and are quite easy to follow. This show would be very entertaining for young kids. The visuals are bright and colorful which will attract young viewers. The music is upbeat and cheery. The characters are adorable and likable. I think that all of these aspects are important in order for kids to enjoy watching a program.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 1 to 5. I believe that this show will intrigue kids with its cute characters and interesting plotlines. It will get them excited about learning, music and physical fitness. It will help parents teach their kids about spelling, grammar and phonics while keeping them hooked and wanting to learn more. This show offers quality entertainment for young children who need to be introduced to the alphabet. Parents can feel confident about using this DVD to enlighten their little ones about the English language. It is available on DVD now so, check it out.

By Ella L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, age 14
Runtime: 575 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-5 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SHERLOCK GNOMES

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SHERLOCK GNOMES
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SHERLOCK GNOMES - PARAMOUNT PICTURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - After a string of garden gnome disappearances in London, Gnome & Juliet look to legendary detective Sherlock Gnomes to solve the case of their missing friends and family.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Breaking news from London - garden gnomes have been kidnapped! "Oh fertilizer!" This is one of many amusing jokes from the very British characters in Sherlock Gnomes, sequel to the 2011 animated film Gnomeo and Juliet. Although the plot of this family-friendly movie is somewhat predictable, it is still quite funny and clever.

In this sequel, the formerly star-crossed lovers Gnomeo (James McAvoy) and Juliet (Emily Blunt) are married and have just moved to London where they are appointed by their parents as joint heads of the garden. Both Juliet and Gnomeo feel the pressures of their new leadership roles and the marriage begins to suffer through lack of communication and mutual appreciation. Meanwhile, their gnome friends are disappearing from homes all over London, and they attempt to search for and save them. With the help of Sherlock Gnomes (Johnny Depp) and Watson (Chiwetel Ejiofor), the adventure begins - to defeat the evil pie company called Moriarty (Jamie Demetriou) and save all gnomes. We also see that poor Watson is quite ignored and under-appreciated by Sherlock.

My favorite aspects of this movie are the music, Johnny Depp and the "planning" sequences. I love the song choices used in transitions between scenes. If you are a fan of Sir Elton John, you will be pleased to hear many of his hits, including "Don't Go Breaking My Heart," "I'm Still Standing," "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" and a fantastic new song performed by the great Mary J. Blige. Johnny Depp is hilarious with his condescending British accent. I have seen almost every movie he has ever been in and he never disappoints with his comedic intensity. Another interesting thing that happens is when we see the inner workings of Sherlock's mind in 2-D black-and-white animation. One clinker for me is when super-intelligent Watson, looking for Gnomeo, says "Gnomeo, Gnomeo! Oh don't make me say it - wherefore art thou, Gnomeo?" (Of course "wherefore" means "why" in Romeo and Juliet.)

The message of this story is a good one - that you will succeed by respecting the people who support you. Sherlock learns that lesson when he realizes that Watson feels that Sherlock isn't listening to him or respecting him. Juliet learns it when she realizes that Gnomeo feels as if Juliet is ignoring him, too.

I rate this film 5 out of 5 stars because, almost all the scenes kept me laughing, the music is great, and I love the message. I recommend this movie for ages 7 to 18. This is available on DVD/Blu-ray June 12, 2018 and on Digital June 5, 2018. If you are looking for a fun family movie, this is it!

Reviewed by Lucia F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 19
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Sherlock Gnomes is a great movie! I really like the storyline because it has an amazing good versus evil plot.

The story follows Gnomeo and Juliet's move to London where they become the new leaders of the garden. On their first day, somebody kidnaps all the gnomes in the garden! Luckily, Sherlock Gnomes and Watson are there. Gnomeo and Juliet help Sherlock save all the gnomes in London.

The animation in this movie is excellent. The gnomes look like real life gnomes with a small touch of cartoon. I like how, in the beginning, a couple of gnomes are standing on a book talking about how they are going to read about Sherlock Gnomes. Sherlock Gnomes is a great detective just like Sherlock Holmes, but instead of protecting people he is the sworn protector of Gnomes. This gives the feeling that the entire movie is about those three gnomes reading us a book about Sherlock Gnomes.

The movie has lots of characters named from other movies and books such as Gnomeo and Juliet whose names are take offs of Romeo and Juliet. Sherlock Gnomes is based on Sherlock Holmes. I like how the gnomes freeze around humans. They just stay completely still so humans don't realize they move. The frozen position is also what they do when fall asleep. As soon as they get frozen, they can choose to fall asleep instantly or not.

The characters in the film include Gnomeo (James McAvoy), Juliet (Emily Blunt), Sherlock Gnomes (Johnny Depp) and Watson (Chiwetel Ejiofor). My favorite character is Benny, (Matt Lucas) because he is smart with technology, but otherwise very clumsy. I find that funny.

My favorite scene is when Benny trips and he is forced to put on a show to distract the guard while Gnomeo escapes. That scene is a mix of action and comedy. Another of my favorite scenes is when Gnomeo comes up with a plan to get past Reggie the gargoyle (Dexter Fletcher). I like how they show the plan with paper versions of all the gnomes.

The message of this movie is never take advantage of your friends. I rate this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 11 because of its great storyline and message. I think adults will like watching this movie as well. It comes out on DVD and Blu-ray June 10 so, be sure to check it out. Reviewed by Damon Foxe, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10.

Sherlock Gnomes is a frequently clever animated film that has a few fun moments, yet suffers from a jumbled story and too many characters to fully engage you in the movie as a whole.

Sherlock Gnomes is a sequel to Gnomeo and Juliet and brings together garden gnome versions of the famous detective and the Shakespearean couple from the first installment. Gnomeo and Juliet move to a new garden in London that disappoints their entire faction of gnomes. Gnomeo and Juliet are appointed the new leaders to turn the garden into a beautiful wonderland for their little village. Meanwhile, several gardens have been erased of all signs of gnomekind and soon, Gnomeo and Juliet's is too. The dynamic duo of the incredibly smart, but sometimes selfish detective and protector of London's garden gnomes Sherlock Gnomes and his trusty sidekick Watson are on the case and intend to catch the culprit and track down the missing gnomes, with the help of Gnomeo and Juliet.

Unfortunately the collision of these literary duos doesn't work very well. Their stories have very different characters and tones. The film makes clever references to Sherlock Holmes and his works that will be enjoyable for fans of the character's inspiration, but the collaboration still feels forced. Gnomeo and Juliet go through a storyline that feels out of place and their conversations have a repetitive message. The characters feel less developed against the more engaging Sherlock Gnomes.

My favorite character is Sherlock Gnomes (Johnny Depp). He embodies the qualities of the literary detective and makes his portrayal of Sherlock his own, giving him a more fun and comedic manner. He also nails Sherlock's complex relationship with Watson.

I recommend this film for ages 5 to 9 due to some crude humor. Younger kids will enjoy the film's bright colors and caper elements and older kids and adults might enjoy some of the humor. However, this film lacks the vivid animation and nuance that offers the same wide appeal of other animated films. I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars because the story is a bit confusing, although it has some characters and good laughs.

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 86 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: DVD



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title

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GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU: AN ENCHANTING EASTER
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GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU: AN ENCHANTING EASTER - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FOREIGN SHORT, AGES 2-7
Description - Enjoy this Easter special adventure based on the classic picture book that has sold more than 30 million copies worldwide, written by Sam McBratney, illustrated by Anita Jeram and published by Walker Books. As winter melts into spring and the meadow bursts forth with new life, Little Nutbrown Hare sees a rare sight... a pure white fawn, dancing in the moonlight. Nobody in the meadow has ever seen a white fawn so his friends think he's making it up. But Little White Owl tells of a place of mystical white creatures in the next valley, so the friends go on an adventure... across the streamy stream, and through the woody woods to search for the mythical white fawn. Little do they know that the tiny fawn is hiding from them, on the patches of white snow, thinking they are all playing a game of hide-and seek. Only when she falls into the stream and the friends save her do they believe Little Nutbrown Hare. The fawn visits them on Easter Day, but isn't so good at playing hide and seek in the grassy meadow, until they find a field of pure white flowers to play in.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I thoroughly enjoyed this DVD and found it quite interesting to learn about a white fawn. This is a heartwarming tale about Little Brown Hare who wanders outside one night when he can't sleep and discovers a rare, all white fawn dancing in the snow. He knows all white fawns are rare and when he talks to her she runs away. Through lots of escapades Little Brown Hare finally is able to convince his forest friends the fawn is real and able to befriend the white fawn. The characters are interesting and charming. A field mouse and a squirrel friends are all friends with Little Brown Hare and they interact with each other in the most loving way. I felt sorry for Little Brown Hare when no one believes that he had seen the white fawn. Eventually the truth comes out and they finally see her and believe Little Brown Hare.

The morale of this story is about love. The love between Little Brown Hare and his dad, the love of friends and possibility of the love of strangers. The negative behaviors shown are about doubt, but that disappears over time. I particularly enjoyed seeing the field mouse trying to protect Little Brown Hare by making a white fawn out of snow. He tries to protect his friend's honor in doing so.

The educational and social elements that make this title valuable emphasize the various ways that you can show someone how you love them. Adults often tell children that they love them and they can hear it in this story in a way they can relate to.

I recommend this for ages 3 to 7 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. It uses vocabulary and ideas which little children can understand and enjoy. Questioning, probing and problem-solving are developed in a manner suitable for the target age. It is very enjoyable and available now on DVD, so check it out.

Reviewed by Tina B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The DVD Guess How Much I Love You: An Enchanting Easter is a great movie for the whole family. This film has beautiful animation and an adorable storyline that I love.

Guess How Much I Love You: An Enchanting Easter follows a group of forest animals. One, the Little Nutbrown Hare sees a pure white fawn that enchants him. He tells his father and his friends - the field mouse, the fox and the grey squirrel. They do not believe him at first but Little Nutbrown Hare convinces them to help find the white fawn.

The animation in this series is adorable. The characters and background are very colorful. In every scene, there is always a pop of color, whether it is a vibrant blue or a soft pink. The characters look just like the illustrations in the original book, which I love. It is remarkable how detailed the characters are. For example, the fox has orange fur that fades at the end. It looks like a watercolor painting.

If I was to pick my favorite character, it would be the field mouse or perhaps Little Nutbrown Hare's father. I like the field mouse, because he is the only one who believes in Little Nutbrown Hare and what he saw. I also like Little Nutbrown Hare's father, because he is so kind. He takes care of the mother bird's eggs while she goes to get feathers for her nest. When the birds hatched, he takes them to where he kept warm during the storms until their mother cam back.

The message of this movie is to trust your friends. The fox and the grey squirrel did not believe Little Nutbrown Hare's story about seeing a pure white fawn. The only one that really believes him is the field mouse. He keeps Little Nutbrown Hare's hopes up when his friends did not believe him. I rate this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages five to seven. This is available on DVD so, look for it.

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

Easter! I love Easter! This 30 minute fantastic, delightful and pure film is directed by Jo Boag. It's so rare to find a truly quality children's film such as this. I love how the storyline brings together so many themes including friendship, believing, togetherness and Easter. Wow! What an amazing combination! Get ready to head down a road filled with adventure.

The story follows Little Nutbrown Hare leading a journey to find a pure white fawn that he sees shining and dancing in the moonlight near his village. His friends think he's making it up. They take a gamble endeavor through the woods in the next valley, down the flowing creek and past the rocks to find her. As their doubt grows, she is right there hiding on the patches of white snow. She instantly thinks it's a big game of hide and seek. She promises to visit them on Easter Day, making Easter that much special for them all.

This film is based on the classic book that has sold worldwide, written by Sam McBratney, illustrated by Anita Jeram and published by Walker Books. The animation is astonishing from beginning to end. The characters are beautiful, colorful, appealing and attractive throughout the entire movie. This film is downright delightful, bringing so much joy for one to appreciate. I just love the animals, especially the cute baby birds! The music really supports the lovely characters and action.

My favorite part is when Little Nutbrown Hare and his friends save the pure white fawn from drowning in the stream. It shows how much he cares and adores her. Absolutely touching! This part in the film has many different actions happening at the same time. All of Little Nutbrown Hare's friends find out the pure white fawn is real and not in Little Nutbrown Hare's imagination. At this moment they are reminded the world is full of marvelous animals. My favorite characters are the pure white fawn and Little Nutbrown Hare, because they are both happy, intriguing, playable and friendly.

This film has a great message of friendship and love and the meaning behind them. True friendships are displayed in this film and we see the genuine love and understanding the characters have for each other. It absolutely calls you to action when they venture out to find pure white fawn. All the characters treat one another appropriately, helping help each other, saying nice things and being friendly to one another.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 11, as well as adults. This film is available now on DVD and Digital, so go check it out before Easter.

Reviewed by Nathalia J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

I love Guess How Much I Love You: An Enchanting Easter! It is a great addition for my collection of Easter movies because it is so cute!

Easter is on its way and this hare is perfect for the holiday season. The life lessons are about friendship and being kind to others. We see this in the kindness extended to the pure white fawn when they show her that they can be friends. The other life lessons are about teamwork and believing in your friends.

The animation is just breathtaking. It is so perfectly executed that it looks like a perfect little story book with live animals. The scenes with the snow are amazing because of the color mix. It is truly magical.

My favorite character is the pure white fawn. She is a new character that I will always remember. I love her personality. She has a sweet side, which she shows towards the end of the film and a funny, silly, playful side that she shows in the beginning. I am in love with her character's voice which is so soft and sweet, making her the perfect fawn. Her interaction with all the different animals shows that she fits right in and they all gain a new BFF.

Another thing that I like about this DVD are the voiceovers. They match the characters wonderfully with their soft tones, making sound a lot like young children. Each character has a small, adorable and squeaky voice.

All the animals are lovable and each one has a different personality. This makes me feel like I am meeting them for real. I want to jump into the screen and give them a big welcome hug. It also makes me want to jump through the TV and play in the meadow as they celebrate Easter. This is a perfect way to get into the spirit of spring after a long, cold and rainy winter.

I recommend this DVD for kids age 4 to 13 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. It is available now on DVD so look for it. Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 30 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-7 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD


NATURE: ANIMALS WITH CAMERAS - PBS DISTRIBUTION
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 7-18
Description - Wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan and animal behaviorists join forces to explore stories of animal lives "told" by the animals themselves. The series explores the secret side of the animal kingdom where human cameramen can't go, and camera-wearing animals film their own stories. Sprint across the savannah with a cheetah, plunge into the ocean with a seal, and swing through the trees with a chimp!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This documentary is exquisitely remarkable, thanks to the engineering of tiny camera and collars the animals wear. I was quite impressed with everything about this show. It offers rare glimpses into the lives of many animals including chimpanzees, penguins and meerkats. And, that is only in Episode 1! There are three episodes included in this collection. It is fascinating to see the birthing chamber of the meerkats and see their new pups at five days old. It is wonderful to see how bonded the chimpanzee family is. The film is educational and thoroughly entertaining as you observe these animals lives from their own point of view. The film shows many things that have never been seen before. I really enjoyed watching how the young penguins learn to hunt in the ocean and how the adults feed their babies. Thanks to these little cameras they wear on their backs we see a totally new aspect of these animals. I was just amazed as I watched them swim past shrimp and to reach their superfood - anchovies. I recommend them this film for ages 7 to 18 as well as adults. The groundbreaking footage will truly sweep you away. I give this 5 stars out of 5 stars. It is absolutely one of my new favorite Nature films from PBS. I plan to watch it again! Reviewed by Denise A. Bloomfield
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - see adult review
Runtime: 180 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 7-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 15.45 Media: DVD

KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DINO DAN TREK'S ADVENTURES: THE COMPLETE SERIES

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DINO DAN TREK'S ADVENTURES: THE COMPLETE SERIES
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DINO DAN TREK'S ADVENTURES: THE COMPLETE SERIES - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - In this complete series set, enjoy 50 dino-filled adventures with junior dinosaur expert, Trek Henderson, as he imagines dinosaurs in the real world! While Trek's brother, Dan, is away helping his dad, it's time for Trek to get his own dino time. Trek is going to finish some of the experiments in Dino Dan's Field Guide including seeing at least eighteen dinosaurs that Dan has never seen before! Trek will even meet marine reptiles for the very first time! It's time to join Trek Henderson as he embarks on one dino adventure after another and all in his very own way.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Dino Dan: Trek's Adventures: The Complete Series is a series for young kids with a lot of excitement, and fun adventures to go on! Kids will love this series if they have a big imagination and of course, have a love of dinosaurs.

On this DVD, there are 50 dino-filled adventures with the dinosaur expert, Trek Henderson. Trek imagines different types of dinosaurs in the real world throughout all of his experiences! While Trek's brother, Dan is away helping his dad with something, Trek takes over and entertains himself with his dinosaur world. The goal is to finish up some of the experiments that Dan has started. Trek even meets some new dinosaurs and marine reptiles that he hasn't seen before! Join Trek on his wonderful adventures throughout the world of dinosaurs!

One reason I really like this show is how they incorporate educational lessons into it. It's not everyday that you see a kids TV show that includes all kinds of educational facts within the story line. This is exactly what this series does. For example, in the episode "Trek Rex," Trek is having trouble figuring out what dinosaur he wants to dress up as for a party. Throughout the episode, he has various encounters with several dinosaurs to help him make his final decision. Trek and the dinosaurs' encounters happen in the real world, in front of real people, so he is imagining it. I believe that creates a connection between Trek and kids in the real world, since many have big imaginations.

The overall message in this series is that it's okay to have an imagination and even share it with others! Trek has no problem sharing his findings out loud for everyone to see and has no shame about doing that. This is what kids should feel. And, sharing their findings throughout their childhood is a cool thing to do.

I rate this show 4 out of 5 stars for its playful storyline, exciting cast, imagination and much more. I would love to see the storyline develop more, but it's perfect for younger kids. I recommend it for ages 5 through 10 . This is available now on DVD, so check it out.

By Imani B.G, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 16
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This series is great for keeping younglings entertained over the summer. With over 500 minutes in its 50 episodes, this will keep them busy and will keep them interested. I found Trek talking to an imaginary dinosaur somewhat strange but hey, it doesn't seem to bother his mom.

The storyline is about when Trek's brother who goes away to dig up fossils and Trek misses him. Then, one day a package arrives in the mail with a message from Dan asking Trek to help him do some dinosaur experiments. In later episodes, he gets better and better at conducting these experiments. One of his tasks is to find out if albertosaurus hunt in packs. For this, he gets a ham sandwich and gets the albertosaurus to chase him.

Trek is played by Trek Buccino who lives in Toronto, Ontario and attended Claude Watson School for the Arts. He has also been in Pacific Rim and PJ Masks. Trek's mom is played by Allana Harkin who has been nominated for the Primetime Emmy award for Full Frontal which she produced.

What I like about the show is that it is enjoyable to watch while you learn some facts along the way. I recommend it for ages 3 to 8 and give it 3 out of 5 stars. It is available now on Digital and DVD/Blu-ray so, check it out.

By Abraham F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 575 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 12.99 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF THE ROSE

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LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF THE ROSE
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LITTLE PRINCE, THE: THE PLANET OF THE ROSE - N CIRCLE ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - Follow the Little Prince, a hero of multiple generations, as he experiences brand new adventures with iconic characters based on the masterpiece by Antoine de St. Exup�ry. In The Planet of the Rose, the Little Prince believes he has succeeded in getting rid of the Snake after a deadly battle. He can now finally continue to find the Rose's planet for his dear Rose. When the Little Prince and Rose reach the planet of the Rose, strange crabs live on the surface and are hardly hospitable. There is no trace of vegetation and no trace of the Rose people. Convinced they have reached the wrong destination, the Little Prince is ready to leave when they find some of the people. However, the Rose people are asleep and fossilized. The Little Prince and Rose need to bring them back to life. Unfortunately, that's not all they will need to do as the Little Prince's enemy, the Snake, hasn't died after all.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I truly enjoyed watching this show. Based on the book series, it has a ring of positivity to it. The Little Prince is an incredibly good and popular book series and a wonderfully animated film series. The symbolisms associated with Rose, the Fox and the Snake may be lost on the youngest viewers. However, school age children will benefit from an increased imaginative mindset and the good vs. evil theme. The flow of the story lags a bit at times, but it is quite pleasant to watch. The Little Prince is definitely a positive role model in terms of protecting the ones he loves such as Rose and other protagonists. They all help each other out of peril like when the spirits help Fox from falling into outer space. The computer animation is exceptional. The characters, locale and colors are easy for viewers to identify with.

One aspect that really stands out are the geographical indicators notating inter-dimensional aspects of outer space. The cover design showing the Little Prince looking out into the distance along with Rose is big, colorful and enticing. Young people would enjoy this film because it is adventurous, the setting is unusual and the graphics are terrific.

The Little Prince series is based upon the teachings of Saint Exupery and holds morals based upon religious values. Although secular in tone, the theme of good overtaking evil is important for children to hear in order to give them hope in this world. The adventure of outer space will draw most children in. This film might get children thinking about other planets and the science of astronomy and geography. It definitely will expand their imaginations. Questioning and probing take place. For example, when the Little Prince talks about traveling to the Rose planet and the Geographer states that they might possibility be "lost forever in infinity" while trying to voyage there. The Little Prince determines it is worth the risk for Rose.

There are no bonus features on the DVD. One issue I have is that when you stop the movie and come back to it later, it starts all over at the beginning. It does not start where it left off, which is a nuisance. Also, there are no foreign language subtitles, which is something I missed. I give this 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 13, as well as adults. It is available on DVD now, so check it out.

Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Once again, the little prince and the adorable Rose are getting back together and it's fantastic how everything is all happy and joyous for their reunion.

It's very fun and interesting and I absolutely love this DVD. The thing about this story, which is very fun and adorable is that they put a new twist on it. And there are lots of new characters as well as old characters from the series. I absolutely love that they brought the King and the Salesclerk back. I really like that they add new characters to the old ones we love and adore. Everyone will have a character that they can relate to. It is really fun and I love the scene when the Fox comes and they gets knocked off the rope and then he gets to meet the King and the Salesclerk again. It's a glorious movie, very hilarious and silly, which I like. Also, the Little Prince is, once again, a fantastic character. He is definitely my favorite character because he has a lot of wonderful traits. He's very kind and generous, which is glorious. At the same time, he serves as a great role model, and one that kids should see more often. It is good to see someone take their duties seriously, especially helping others. That's what we get in the prince, all the time. I also love little Rose. She's very adorable. She is very funny when she is arguing with the Fox. The two of them are just like yin and yang.

Now, one thing that is just fascinating about this show is the animation. If you think about it, when you look at it you think, "Wow! I'm stunned." I think this show is something that will inspire many young children who might think about traveling to another the moon or Mars. I think that idea is fascinating. I have always loved astronauts. That's what makes this DVD so perfect. The animation is so detailed and colorful and each planet has its own unique twist and turns. By just using words, a little bit of script and then adding all the colors in the DVD make this show perfect. I love that the animation seems to be a mix of anime and origami. They work perfectly together.

I really love that this show is something the entire family can enjoy together. I think it's suitable for ages 5 to 18, as well as adults. I definitely give this 5 out of 5 stars. This is available now on DVD so be sure to check it out! You don't want to miss this one.

By Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 85 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 7.99 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC: APPLEJACK

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MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC: APPLEJACK
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MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC: APPLEJACK - SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 5-12
Description - Think work on the farm is easy? Then you don't know jack - Applejack, that is! Honesty, patience and friendships are tested in a new collection of adventures featuring everypony's favorite four-hooved apple lover! Join Applejack and her very best pals - Twilight Sparkle, Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Fluttershy and Spike - as they experience the power and magic of true friendship. Bonus Feature: sing-along.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Each episode in this collection is approximately 25 minutes in length. The storylines are very straightforward and the moral messages are charming and clear. They are very engaging for the target age. The characters draw you in with their multi-dimensional human personality traits. The language is quite suitable for the audience as well, although younger kids may not pick up every single word. The overall messages are what are important. Applejack, the main character, maintains an integrity even if others do something different. If she does something wrong, then she accepts the mistake as well as its consequences and, more importantly, apologizes. The other characters hold the same level of integrity as well. Questioning and probing are developed when certain problematic situations take place. An example is when a pair of scam artists dupe a crowd at a circus presentation into believing that a miracle product cures ills, Applejack instantly feels there is something fishy going on and is concerned when grandma pony purchases the elixir. In another episode, Applejack's younger sisters and friends want to help build carts for a race, but the older sisters take over designing the carts. The race ends in a big crash, destroying the carts. The younger siblings assert that the holder ones took over their project and the resolution is for the younger ponies to rebuild their carts without interference from the older siblings. I love the humor in these stories, the visual appeal, interesting storylines and great morals that children can easily pick up. The animation is big and colorful. There are five episodes and bonus singalong. The messages address how to be a person of high character, getting along with others, owning up to mistakes and apologizing. I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 9. Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Even though these episodes are clearly for younger kids, I can't deny that I actually really like these episodes. I don't think I'll actually start watching the show, but this show can be enjoyed by the whole family because it is very entertaining.

This DVD is a collection of five shorts from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, with most of the episodes centered around the character, Applejack. She is an important character in every episode, even the ones that are not centered around her. I am aware that My Little Pony actually has some pretty interesting stories and can get pretty dark, but these episodes are filler. They do also reference major events in past episodes and one episode has two characters who appear to be recurring characters, so I really wouldn't recommend this DVD as a way to fully understand what takes place on the show.

That being said, Applejack has a sweet southern accent, works on a farm and appears to epitomize honesty. I like that My Little Pony shows have a moral compass that teach positive lessons. This show should make lots of parents happy. My Little Pony has a ton of effort and care put into each episode. I'm very impressed with this show. Often times in shows, filler episodes are boring and they make you wish you were watching a story driven episode. This isn't the case with these stories!

Now, My Little Pony has some really interesting characters. I love character driven stories and that best describes this series. The main cast consists of six characters, or "The Mane 6" as they're often referred to outside the show. By the way, it's an amazing pun. I really like when shows have a large cast of recurring characters that really make their world feel real. It helps world-building, character dynamics and of course, I love talking about characters in media. As I mentioned, these episodes focus mainly on one character, Applejack, but sometimes the other members of The Mane 6 share the spotlight. If you like Twilight Sparkle, Rainbow Dash and Rarity, then you will love this series because they are highly featured. My main issue is that, ironically, my favorite member of The Mane 6, Fluttershy isn't in any of these episodes. I know the episodes are about Applejack, but from what I've seen of recent My Little Pony, Fluttershy is the most under-developed of the group. So please, My Little Pony creators, show some love and character development to Fluttershy.

I give this DVD 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 12. The DVD is available now, so look for it.

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

Howdy there everyone. Get ready for a brand new adventure with my favorite pony, Applejack! We will be exploring the terrific apple farm and seeing all the wondrous things Applejack, and her wonderful family, do there. I enjoyed all the new episodes in My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic: Applejack because they show Applejack and her family in Ponyville.

Who can argue with Applejack? I know I can't! After all, she personifies the element of truth and that is one of her best qualities. Since she knows how to spot a lie at first sight, she makes the perfect detective. This is why "Leap of Faith" is my favorite episode, hooves down. I can't get enough of Applejack's detective skills and Granny Smith reliving her youth. There is just too much fun and humor in one episode and therefore it is so enjoyable to watch. Two of my other favorite characters are in this episode and they are brewing up trouble - aka Flim and Flam are back in town.

The pony who steals the show is defiantly Applejack. After all this DVD is all about her and she surely takes advantage of that. I would love to have Applejack as a friend and a neighbor, not only for her honestly, but because she is kind and gracious as well. Her sweet southern accent is hard to resist.

The animation in these episodes is very detailed and, once again, looks as if there is a pony running around this wonderful city. I adore the way the town looks with all the bright colors and fun characters. The barn is especially great. It looks as if you could go and pick apples right from the trees. That is one of the great things about this series. The colors appeal to both young and old audiences because of how vivid they are.

Another thing to look for in this DVD are the fun bonus features such as the sing-along and the amazing new cook book from Applejack. You will find recipes for caramel apples, baked apples and spiced apple cider - all of which are kid friendly. The sing-along is great for kids who want to become world renowned singers because they can sing along with their favorite My little Pony Songs with Applejack and the rest of the main six.

I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 15 and give it 5 out 5 apple stars. It is available on DVD and Digital now so, go check it out.

Reviewed by Morgan B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 110 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 13.98 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MAYA THE BEE 2: THE HONEY GAMES BLU-RAY/DVD

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MAYA THE BEE 2: THE HONEY GAMES BLU-RAY/DVD - SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 2-5
Description - After a slow harvest season, the very survival of the hive is threatened. Maya, and her sidekick, Willy, go to Buzztropolis, where the Empress invites them to participate in the Honey Games. But if they lose, the hive will have to give the Empress all of their summer honey! Needless to say, Maya and Willy's teammates are neither enthusiastic nor athletic, but Maya remains positive and exclaims that "every bug has a talent!" Can Maya and Team Poppy win and secure her hive's future? Only if Maya is able to gain new friends and learn about teamwork, responsibility, and overcoming their differences! Bonus features: The Making of Maya the Bee 2; Original teaser and trailers.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - My six-year-old granddaughter really enjoyed this DVD. The storyline is quite interesting in showing the life of bees and how they gather honey and support the Queen and all the other bees in the colony. The story line continues with the Queen Bee of Poppy Meadow and her bees gathering honey for the winter. She realizes that they may not have enough honey for the hive to last the winter when she gets word that the Empress, her estranged sister, has declared that the Queen's colony has been selected for The Honey Games. The Hive of Poppy Meadow is required to honor the Empress to donate 50% of their honey. They don't have enough honey for their own hive to survive the winter, so the request is a difficult one to abide by. Maya and her best friend Willie go the Empress and please their case.

The story line is easy to follow and suitable for the target audience. The vocabulary and concepts are also right on target. There is a lot of teamwork shown and sometimes Maya tries things on her own but soon realizes that is a mistake and relies on her friends to help. There are some consequences and they are repaired by the characters in a nice way. Each becomes more respectful of the others as time passes.

The visual appeal of this DVD is appropriate and interesting enough for the youth it was designed for. The DVD is animated and colorful and lively in action to keep the interests of the intended audiences. I feel that the storyline of this is quite entertaining for youth and the pictures of the bees are so cute! The characters on the cover are so interesting you wonder what kind of trouble are they about to get into!

In terms of the message of this story, as the story develops, we discover that the Empress and the Queen are actually sisters that do not get along. Towards the end they make up and realize they love each other and miss being together. Forgiveness becomes the overall theme as we see the sisters resolve their differences. Also, during the competition games the contestants learn a few lessons about fairness and love. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 9.

Reviewed by Tina B., KIDS FIRST! Adult juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I really enjoyed watching this! This animated film has many underlying messages without becoming confusing. Each of the characters have their own strong personalities which makes their interactions interesting. The plot line is intriguing also.

The main character, Maya is a bee who dreams of competing in The Honey Games. One day she has a chance to make her dream comes true, but it will put her entire city at risk. The Empress demands Maya's city to give up half of their honey to contribute to The Honey Games. They aren't allowed to participate, but are forced to give up their honey. Maya believes that this is outrageous and challenges the Empress. If Maya wins, she doesn't have to give up any honey. But if she loses, they have to give up all of their honey and her city will starve.

Maya (Coco Jack Gillies) is a well developed character. Coco Jack Gillies makes her voice distinctly sound differently which is good for Maya who goes through a lot of emotions. Gillies can sound distressed, guilty, ecstatic and hopeful.

The animation is done really well. The quality is great and all of the little details contribute to make it seem very realistic. The music also is very suitable for the film and sets the mood in the various scenes.

My favorite part is when Maya's best friend Willy realizes that Violet, a bee who is a bully, is trying to sabotage them. Willy has a slight crush on Violet, which blinds him of all the mean things she is doing to Maya. Finally Willy realizes what is happening and stands up for Maya. Even through all these hardships, Maya and Willy find it in their hearts to forgive Violet for everything that she has done. That is one of the messages in this film.

Other messages address how everyone has their own special talent, how you should believe in yourself and that no matter how small you are, you can still make a difference. These messages are really important and give kids a lot of self confidence. I love how they incorporate all of these wonderful messages into the story without making the film trivial.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 10. This DVD is available now so, be sure to check it out.

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

The animation in this film is very high quality, except for the characters' hair. It's a bit odd that they put so much detail into the bodies of the bees, but none into their hair. For me, this movie is a bit too predictable. I like more exciting movies.

The storyline in Maya The Bee 2: The Honey Games follows a little bee named Maya who accidentally embarrasses the empress of Buzztropolis and is forced to try to win The Honey Games to prove that her hive are not all foolish bees. The Honey Games are a series of physical challenges. Maya must win them with a team of oddball bugs or the Empress will take all her hive's summer honey and Maya's hive won't survive the winter.

The main characters in this movie are, Maya, (Coco Jack Gillies), the leader of Team Poppy and Willi (Benson Jack Anthony), Maya's sidekick. Other characters include, Bedford, (Cam Ralph), a bedbug, Spinder (Jordan Hare), a vegetarian spider, Craig, (Jimmy James Eaton) a cockroach that fears dirt, Arnie, (David Collins) and Barney, (Shane Dundas) two ants with helmets, and the villain, Violet, (Linda Ngo). My favorite of these character is Willi because he is scared to do all the stuff Maya wants to do, but Maya won't listen to him and he is forced to do those things anyway. I find this funny.

My favorite scene is when Maya tries to get a honey treat away from Willi so she can give it to the Empress, but instead she accidently throws the treat at the Empress and embarrasses her. This scene is funny, because of the way Maya tries to help her but instead she gets stuck to the Empress's face. Throughout the movie Maya must learn about teamwork and overcoming differences. That leads us to the big message of this movie which is everybody has a talent or, as Maya says it, every bug has a talent. That means that nobody is useless.

I rate this movie 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 7 because it has a good message. I think adults might enjoy watching this movie with their children. This movie is available now on Blue Ray and DVD so, check it out.

Reviewed by Damon F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 83 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 18.97 Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DIGIMON ADVENTURE TRI: LOSS

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DIGIMON ADVENTURE TRI: LOSS - SHOUT! FACTORY
Series: DVD, AGES 8-18
Description - Digimon Adventure Tri: Loss is the fourth in a series of six feature length movies. After the "reboot" and Meicoomon's rampage, Tai and friends arrive in the Digital World. They reunite with their partner Digimon, who have lost all their memories. As everyone discusses what they should do from here in the Digital World, Meicoomon suddenly appears and then disappears. She still has her memories for some reason as she wanders around, looking for Meiko. Meanwhile in the real world, Nishijima receives word that Himekawa has gone missing. As he investigates, he determines that there's been some hidden agenda behind her behavior up to this point. It has something to do with an event in the past that determined both their destinies... Special Features: "The Evolution So Far" - Star Joshua Seth Catches Us Up To The Events Of Digimon Adventure tri.: Loss Digimon Adventure tri: Loss is the sequel to Digimon Adventure tri: Confession.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This DVD will certainly entertain the viewer. It has many moving parts, flows well from beginning to end. Younger kids will not understand all the themes, unless they are familiar with the series. The protagonists are polite to each other and concerned for one another. They express emotions in an appropriate manner such as speaking directly about their feelings - "I was scared when you left me." Problem-solving is demonstrated by the characters working together. This concept fits the target age group. Viewers learn that when people work together, the results are positive. This film utilizes Japanese animation which is appealing to children. The color scheme is not brightly colored and the artwork is quite detailed. Young people need to have hope in this world and the theme that prevails here is of good overcoming evil. The storyline is very involved and mind-stimulating. The DVD's menu allows you to select specific scenes and there are bonus feature. I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 13. Reviewed by Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Digimon Adventure Tri: Loss entertained me because of its wonderful animation and impressive voice acting. This is sure to be a watch for Digimon and anime fans.

The story follows the events after the reboot where all Digimon were forced to forget their partners. In wake of this, the shrewd Joe Kido (Robbie Daymond) sets out to hunt them while they are at their weakest. To defend themselves, the team must unite and strengthen their Digimon to match up to Kido's wits. During this, a hopeless Sora (Colleen O'Shaugnessey) tries to reunite with her estranged Biyomon (Cherami Leigh), as Kido targets her first.

Colleen O'Shaugnessey, as Sora, excellently presents her sorrow and selflessness for Biyomon. However, their sullen interactions become rather repetitive and forced as the story progresses. Miho Arakawa, as Meiko, splendidly portrays her reformation from saving Meicoomon, using this hope to brighten Sora. Robbie Daymond, as Joe Kido, is my favorite character due to his clever performance full of charisma as he proves to be a force to be reckoned with. Also, his deceiving escapes add a theatric grandeur to the character. Tom Fahn, as Agumon, exhibits his leadership through his care and demands of the other Digimon. Cherami Leigh, as Biyomon, depicts an equally well acted counterpart to Sora with her inability to pair with her. Kate Higgons, as Meicoomon, spectacularly reforms from being the main antagonist of the last movie to one that is heroic following the reboot.

The direction by Keitaro Motonaro wonderfully adapts with a similar approach to the source magna. My favorite scene is the resolution between Sora and Biyomon. Its conclusion adds a touching ending to this mixed bag of a plot. My only problems with this movie are in its inconsistent writing which switches from one tone to the next or even underplays many character arcs. Also, the amount of farcical humor could have taken a break to service the plot's serious developments.

The message of the movie is to always take care of yourself first before concerning others. Sora's insecurities increase while trying to reconcile with Biyomon, but this leaves her and other team members susceptible to attack. I give this film 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18 because of its frequent action. The movie is available now on DVD and Blu-Ray, so check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Runtime: 100 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 7-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 11.98 Media: DVD



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