KIDS FIRST! has endorsed 1542 total Video titles

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KIDS FIRST ALL STAR
JOEY AND ELLA

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JOEY AND ELLA
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JOEY AND ELLA - GRINDSTONE HOME ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FEATURE, AGES 7-18
Description - A mysterious diamond causes a baby kangaroo named Joey to grow quickly and gain the power of speech. When two bumbling thieves try to retrieve the magical gem, a teen and her new boyfriend try to get Joey to safety before it's too late.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love Joey and Ella! It is an adventurous comedy that is perfect for the whole family. This movie has it all - boy meets girl, girl likes boy, a mysterious jewel heist, an adorable kangaroo and a reminder of the importance of protecting our planet. So, buckle up and get ready for an action packed, fun filled family adventure that will inspire you.

This modern-day movie opens with two criminals stealing and then losing the Mazinski Diamond, which is a rare alien diamond. This unique gem is unknowingly swiped by a baby kangaroo from a traveling circus. Ella, a young girl who just moved to her grandfather's countryside house, discovers a cute kangaroo, Joey, hiding out in her grandfather's barn. Quickly, Ella discovers that the Mazinski diamond is not only rare, but magical. The diamond's magic allows Joey to grow rapidly and gives him the amazing power to speak! Word gets out that Joey has the Mazinski Diamond and soon everyone is on the chase for this special kangaroo. Ella and her new friend from school, Luke, have to work together to save Joey.

This cast is filled with many talented actors - Jennifer Michele (Ella), Angela Tran (Joey) and Jude Manley (Luke). Each one really connects with their character and delivers strong performances throughout the movie. My favorite part is when Joey and Ella meet for the first time in the barn, because it is such a heartwarming and sweet moment. You can really feel the bond between the two of them. And, I absolutely love the animation for Joey. It is so realistic. You think that he is a real kangaroo throughout the movie.

The intent of this film is to spread awareness about the effects of climate change and encourage us to work together in our communities to protect our planet. Climate change has negatively impacted Australia where there are many wildfires and droughts that put the kangaroo population at risk. This movie inspires us all to help keep our environment and animals safe by playing an active role.

I recommend Joey and Ella for ages 7 to 18. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars. It releases on DVD and Digital July 27, 2021. So, hop to it! This is a movie you don't want to miss. ELLA OUT!

By Ella M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Juror Recommended Age: 7-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media:



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
BLUE GOLD ANIJAM - TONY PAPA
Series: FOREIGN ENVIRONMENTAL SHORT, AGES 8-18
Description - A collaborative effort by the students at the Powell River Digital Film School 2021 to Animate to the environmental Song by Lillooet Fox.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This clever music video, created by a team of students, is filled with stunning images of the ocean and marine life. There are some cutaways to a montage of torn paper images showing environmental damaging elements. Other cutaways demonstrate damage to coral reefs. The song that is visually illustrated is beautifully produced and delivers a strong message about saving the environment. This would make a great interstitial piece for any film festival, particularly one with an environmental focus. I applaud the student production team on their creativity and sensibility. I love the final message: stand up, be strong.

I give this film 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 16. Reviewed by Juror #5.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This clever music video, created by a team of students, is filled with stunning images of the ocean and marine life. There are some cutaways to a montage of torn paper images showing environmental damaging elements. Other cutaways demonstrate damage to coral reefs. The song that is visually illustrated is beautifully produced and delivers a strong message about saving the environment. This would make a great interstitial piece for any film festival, particularly one with an environmental focus. I applaud the student production team on their creativity and sensibility. I love the final message: stand up, be strong.

I give this film 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 16. Reviewed by Juror #5.
Runtime: 4 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
DOG WHO BROUGHT HOME THE SUN, THE
DOG WHO BROUGHT HOME THE SUN, THE - STACY LI
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 12 - 18
Description - In the dead of winter with no food and resources, a dog seeks to catch the sun.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The student animated film, The Dog Who Brought Home the Sun is beautifully illustrated with stunning visuals and a moving soundtrack.

The story tells how a dog chases the sun to bring food home to his person in the middle of winter when they are without food or resources.

The visuals of this film are its greatest asset. I love the image of the dog running to catch the bird. The dog's motion is beautifully executed as it chases the sun, and then a bird across the sky. There is no narrative to the film, but there is extraordinary background music which pushes the story forward with its pulsing crescendos when the dog is running and quietness when he brings the bird back to his human person. When the man sets the bird free, the snow melts, the fields turn green and all is good again.

The message is about never giving up and believing that things will get better.

I give this 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for 8 to 14 year olds. It would make a lovely interstitial for a youth or family film festival. Reviewed by Juror #5, KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The student animated film, The Dog Who Brought Home the Sun is beautifully illustrated with stunning visuals and a moving soundtrack.

The story tells how a dog chases the sun to bring food home to his person in the middle of winter when they are without food or resources.

The visuals of this film are its greatest asset. I love the image of the dog running to catch the bird. The dog's motion is beautifully executed as it chases the sun, and then a bird across the sky. There is no narrative to the film, but there is extraordinary background music which pushes the story forward with its pulsing crescendos when the dog is running and quietness when he brings the bird back to his human person. When the man sets the bird free, the snow melts, the fields turn green and all is good again.

The message is about never giving up and believing that things will get better.

I give this 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for 8 to 14 year olds. It would make a lovely interstitial for a youth or family film festival. Reviewed by Juror #5, KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 4 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
HOME WITH THE NIINE LITTLE BEARS
HOME WITH THE NIINE LITTLE BEARS - WOODY YOCUM
Series: INDIE SHORTS, AGES 2-6
Description - The purpose of a good bedtime story is to help children make peace with whatever day they have had and to feel the world is a good and safe place, before they drift into sleep. This is what we have tried to embody in Home with the Nine Little Bears.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - What a fun little short film; a bedtime story about a fictional family of nine young bear siblings. I love how these critters are anthropomorphized by giving them a home, complete with all the accoutrements you would expect in a human home, clothing on the older family members, and relationships with their extended family.

The story is a simple one about this fictional family of bears following their interactions with the world around them throughout the seasons. We watch them interact with their siblings, their parents and their community in a charming and sweet way.

The images in this film are stunning; the opening looks like a watercolor that has come to life; the bears are adorable, and each one is suitably named. I really love the voice of the narrator, which is soothing and clear. I like how the filmmaker makes use of simple graphic enhancements to grab our attention. The storyline is easy to relate to - well, if you have 8 siblings. We observe the lives of these adorable nine bears as they wander the forest meadow, the blueberry patches, the bubbling stream, and observe all that they experience in their natural environment. The motion of the bears is perfect, as they run and jump across the forest, dance around a tree, and fall asleep at the end. The locations are delightful, from the forest, to their charming home. We watch the seasons change and the behavior of the bears change with the seasons. The guitar-strumming background music suits the film; I particularly enjoyed the ending song which left me humming along after the film ended.

What I took away from this film is the simplicity and beauty of nature, and the critters that live in it, even fictional ones.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 7. It would make a sweet addition for a youth film festival. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - What a fun little short film; a bedtime story about a fictional family of nine young bear siblings. I love how these critters are anthropomorphized by giving them a home, complete with all the accoutrements you would expect in a human home, clothing on the older family members, and relationships with their extended family.

The story is a simple one about this fictional family of bears following their interactions with the world around them throughout the seasons. We watch them interact with their siblings, their parents and their community in a charming and sweet way.

The images in this film are stunning; the opening looks like a watercolor that has come to life; the bears are adorable, and each one is suitably named. I really love the voice of the narrator, which is soothing and clear. I like how the filmmaker makes use of simple graphic enhancements to grab our attention. The storyline is easy to relate to - well, if you have 8 siblings. We observe the lives of these adorable nine bears as they wander the forest meadow, the blueberry patches, the bubbling stream, and observe all that they experience in their natural environment. The motion of the bears is perfect, as they run and jump across the forest, dance around a tree, and fall asleep at the end. The locations are delightful, from the forest, to their charming home. We watch the seasons change and the behavior of the bears change with the seasons. The guitar-strumming background music suits the film; I particularly enjoyed the ending song which left me humming along after the film ended.

What I took away from this film is the simplicity and beauty of nature, and the critters that live in it, even fictional ones.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 7. It would make a sweet addition for a youth film festival. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 15 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-6 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
DUKHA, THE
DUKHA, THE - CARMEN MORROW/ZACH WOLF
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 8 - 14
Description - In the remote taiga of northern Mongolia live the Dukha, one of the last groups of nomadic reindeer herders in the world. Tuvshuu is five years old. He and his sisters help with their family's herd at the summer camp, where there are cool winds and plenty of grass. Their way of life and knowledge of reindeer has been passed down for millennia. With less than 40 Dukha families left in the world, Tuvshuu will have some big decisions ahead.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Dukha is a beautifully shot, enjoyable and educational documentary that explores a topic that few think of. The film is a mix of stop motion scenes and live action shots - a mix that could go wrong, but certainly doesn't in this film!

This short film is about one of the last groups of nomadic reindeer herders in the world - the Mongolian Dukha tribe. The film focuses on their way of life, how reindeers came to live with humans, and discusses the life of five-year old Tuvshuu, who may be destined to be one of the last reindeer herders.

The idea behind The Dukha is amazing and well executed. There is a compartmentalized focus on who the Dukha are, how reindeer came to live with them, and all about Tuvshuu and the path ahead of him. At times I wished that they had focused on one of these three things, rather than dividing our attention between them. It would have been more enlightening to see some interviews with other Dukha or to learn more about how they interact with the reindeer.

I learned a bit about the Mongols in my world history class and took a tiny bit of knowledge of nomadic life into the film, but realized how much of a difference there is between seeing nomadic life in action and reading about it in a textbook. The filmmakers have captured the raw, deep essence of life of these nomads in the high Mongolian altitudes. I love the shots of the Dukha interacting with their reindeer, and of course, seeing Tuvshuu and other kids learning how to ride reindeer is super adorable.

The film is set in the picturesque mountains of Mongolia; it's a beautiful backdrop for a film, with lush green pastures in the temperate summertime. There are several shots inside the Dukha's colorful tents and well lit tents. Truly unique; no two tents are the same. The music in the film is one-of-a-kind, with lilting tunes that accentuae the tone of the film. In especially happy scenes, the music rises in volume and there are often some interesting beats thrown in. There are some stop motion scenes throughout the film, especially at the beginning and during vignettes of myths or tales. These add some flavor to the film and are seamlessly executed. Most of these scenes involve some background noises, like a flowing freshwater stream. The background noises are clearly recorded and cut together well. Just for the cuteness factor, Tuvshuu, the young five-year-old nomad, stands out the most in this film. Directors Carmen Morrow and Zach Wolf also deserve to be commended for their work in researching, shooting and editing this film; it's truly a beautiful piece of art! I learned more about the nomadic way of life of the Dukha and how reindeer live among them. My favorite scene is watching a young child mounting a reindeer with his mother's help and experiencing a massive thrill when the reindeer follows his directions and moves forward. That was so heartwarming!

By spotlighting the Dukha, the film aims to educate viewers about a way of life that few know about and still remains.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. This is a great educational film and makes you want to learn more about Mongolian nomads. Reviewed by Eshaan M. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Dukha is a beautifully shot, enjoyable and educational documentary that explores a topic that few think of. The film is a mix of stop motion scenes and live action shots - a mix that could go wrong, but certainly doesn't in this film!

This short film is about one of the last groups of nomadic reindeer herders in the world - the Mongolian Dukha tribe. The film focuses on their way of life, how reindeers came to live with humans, and discusses the life of five-year old Tuvshuu, who may be destined to be one of the last reindeer herders.

The idea behind The Dukha is amazing and well executed. There is a compartmentalized focus on who the Dukha are, how reindeer came to live with them, and all about Tuvshuu and the path ahead of him. At times I wished that they had focused on one of these three things, rather than dividing our attention between them. It would have been more enlightening to see some interviews with other Dukha or to learn more about how they interact with the reindeer.

I learned a bit about the Mongols in my world history class and took a tiny bit of knowledge of nomadic life into the film, but realized how much of a difference there is between seeing nomadic life in action and reading about it in a textbook. The filmmakers have captured the raw, deep essence of life of these nomads in the high Mongolian altitudes. I love the shots of the Dukha interacting with their reindeer, and of course, seeing Tuvshuu and other kids learning how to ride reindeer is super adorable.

The film is set in the picturesque mountains of Mongolia; it's a beautiful backdrop for a film, with lush green pastures in the temperate summertime. There are several shots inside the Dukha's colorful tents and well lit tents. Truly unique; no two tents are the same. The music in the film is one-of-a-kind, with lilting tunes that accentuae the tone of the film. In especially happy scenes, the music rises in volume and there are often some interesting beats thrown in. There are some stop motion scenes throughout the film, especially at the beginning and during vignettes of myths or tales. These add some flavor to the film and are seamlessly executed. Most of these scenes involve some background noises, like a flowing freshwater stream. The background noises are clearly recorded and cut together well. Just for the cuteness factor, Tuvshuu, the young five-year-old nomad, stands out the most in this film. Directors Carmen Morrow and Zach Wolf also deserve to be commended for their work in researching, shooting and editing this film; it's truly a beautiful piece of art! I learned more about the nomadic way of life of the Dukha and how reindeer live among them. My favorite scene is watching a young child mounting a reindeer with his mother's help and experiencing a massive thrill when the reindeer follows his directions and moves forward. That was so heartwarming!

By spotlighting the Dukha, the film aims to educate viewers about a way of life that few know about and still remains.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. This is a great educational film and makes you want to learn more about Mongolian nomads. Reviewed by Eshaan M. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 8 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-14 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
PEACH
PEACH - CHRISTINA SU
Series: STUDENT SHORT, AGES 8 TO 12
Description - A young monkey looks forward to eating a giant peach, but a panda makes it a challenging task.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I found the animated student film, Peach, which is illustrated in 2D, to be cleverly designed with lots of interesting points of view in the camera work.

The story is about a monkey that finds a peach and looks forward to eating it until a big panda bear interrupts his plan. A struggle ensues, wherein the two of them settle their difference and - la voila - there is a big surprise at the end.

First of all, the storyline is well developed in this non-narrative film. The animation, though simple, does the story justice. The soft colors are pleasing, although they sometimes lack contrast. The background music provides just the right amount of tone to help push the story forward. And, the surprise ending is very satisfying.

The message is to never suppose you know what's going on until you know what's going on.

I recommend this for ages 4 to 12, plus adults. It would make a lovely interstitial for any film festival geared for youth and families. Reviewed by Juror #5, KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I found the animated student film, Peach, which is illustrated in 2D, to be cleverly designed with lots of interesting points of view in the camera work.

The story is about a monkey that finds a peach and looks forward to eating it until a big panda bear interrupts his plan. A struggle ensues, wherein the two of them settle their difference and - la voila - there is a big surprise at the end.

First of all, the storyline is well developed in this non-narrative film. The animation, though simple, does the story justice. The soft colors are pleasing, although they sometimes lack contrast. The background music provides just the right amount of tone to help push the story forward. And, the surprise ending is very satisfying.

The message is to never suppose you know what's going on until you know what's going on.

I recommend this for ages 4 to 12, plus adults. It would make a lovely interstitial for any film festival geared for youth and families. Reviewed by Juror #5, KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 4 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
LEO THE LION
LEO THE LION - ANDREY ARUTIUNOV
Series: EPISODICS
Description - The plot of the cartoon Leo the Lion is a children's animated cartoon about the travels and adventures of a naughty team of friends: Leo the lion cub, Syoma the leopard and Pandochka the bear Panda cub. The cartoons tell about the discoveries of brave travelers, about their friendship and mutual assistance, about the respect for nature. The release date of the first episode is April 2021. The duration of one episode is 6 minutes. Full HD 1920x1080 Genre: adventure, family, educational. Age: The series is aimed at 4-8 years It is planned to create 2 seasons, each with 10 episodes. Language: Russian + Eng. subtitles + other if need Country of producing: Ukraine All pictures in this project are frames from the first episode which we send to Film Festival. The video - its the first episode which we send to Film Festival. The first episode is based on the tale of Dmitry Arutyunov: "A Journey for Treasure". This tale is now translating in English language, 36 illustrations are ready. Who we are: Andrey Arutiunov - cartoon director, character design, storyboard, animatic, modeling, texture artist, rigging, animation, layout, setup, lighting, rendering, compositing, post-production, editing, sound design, sound engineer. Dmitry Arutiunov - the father of Andrey Arutyunov (we have such a creative family) wrote the script and dialogues of the cartoon, the author of the fairy tale, according to which the cartoon is created Ilya Zudin - composer, sound-designer Nika Lyovkina - singer, sings a song about a lion Svetlana Makarenko - design assistant Elena Shverk - voiced "Leo" and "Leopard" Regina Mursalimova - voiced "Panda"
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Leo the Lion is a cute, fun and educational show that is sure to please young viewers. It involves a goal, challenges and fun messages along the way. The characters are distinct and adorable, with the story being completely kid-friendly for the younger set.

The story follows Leo the Lion and other animal friends as they set off on a trip to a treasure island. However, along the way, there are a couple of challenges. These lead to an interesting resolution that involves the characters learning a lesson.

The show is very cute, fun and has a predictable ending. The animation is very well done, with lots of definition and brilliant colors. The perspective and angles are very good. The backgrounds are well selected with details such as sailing accessories matching the story and characters perfectly. It's creative and very well chosen. The background music is unremarkable, a bit tedious, and very predictable. The voice talent works, although the dialogue is in Russian, so, I relied on reading the subtitles rather than listening to the voice talent. It has some educational value; for example, I learned that packs of dolphins can scare off certain sharks. There are some other interesting facts related to sea animals. My favorite part is the animation, which is cute, colorful and pretty realistic. The director is Andrey Arutiunov, who also directed Phantoms of the Sea in 2019.

The message is to know that valuables and treasure aren't always gold or riches.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 7. It's fun, entertaining and educational. Reviewed by Kyla C., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Leo the Lion is a cute, fun and educational show that is sure to please young viewers. It involves a goal, challenges and fun messages along the way. The characters are distinct and adorable, with the story being completely kid-friendly for the younger set.

The story follows Leo the Lion and other animal friends as they set off on a trip to a treasure island. However, along the way, there are a couple of challenges. These lead to an interesting resolution that involves the characters learning a lesson.

The show is very cute, fun and has a predictable ending. The animation is very well done, with lots of definition and brilliant colors. The perspective and angles are very good. The backgrounds are well selected with details such as sailing accessories matching the story and characters perfectly. It's creative and very well chosen. The background music is unremarkable, a bit tedious, and very predictable. The voice talent works, although the dialogue is in Russian, so, I relied on reading the subtitles rather than listening to the voice talent. It has some educational value; for example, I learned that packs of dolphins can scare off certain sharks. There are some other interesting facts related to sea animals. My favorite part is the animation, which is cute, colorful and pretty realistic. The director is Andrey Arutiunov, who also directed Phantoms of the Sea in 2019.

The message is to know that valuables and treasure aren't always gold or riches.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 7. It's fun, entertaining and educational. Reviewed by Kyla C., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 6 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
CLEVER PRANKSTERS
CLEVER PRANKSTERS - DALA ANIMATION
Series: EPISODICS
Description - High in the foothills of the Alatau Mountains, four friends - Maral, Bulan, Suyr, and Insin, who are thick as thieves, live next to each other. Every day the little kids play in their cosy village, constantly learning about the world, exploring their surroundings and making discoveries. Every day the little animals have exciting adventures, go on fascinating hikes, play various games and of course learn many new things. Friends and mentors, who they meet along the way, help them to learn about the world around them. These are the representatives of fauna inhabiting the steppes, mountains and forests of Kazakhstan. In this series, the animals build an Altybakan (swing) and prepare for Nauryz, but because of their misunderstanding, they almost ruin the holiday, however, the wise Bulan helps his friends resolve the conflict and celebrate Nauryz.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Clever Pranksters educates and enthralls viewers. Rich in Kazakh culture and beautifully animated, each character has its own special personality, accentuated by unique voice talent and an easy to follow plot.

In the Alatau mountains of Kazakhstan, four neighbors and friends, Maral, Bulan, Suyr and Insin are preparing for the Nauryz Festival, marking the beginning of spring and the Persian New Year. The four build an altybakan swing and are looking forward to eating special Nauryz kozhe, but Maral, Suyr and Insin's impatience nearly ruins the holiday.

I did not know much about Kazakh traditions, and this show enlightened me about how Kazakhs celebrate Nauryz. Additionally, even though the characters are animals, they show human values which makes watching the show even more fun and relatable. The animation is well executed; the shots of the friends' village in the mountains are picturesque, and the motion graphics (while not reflecting real life) are engaging as well. The characters have some exaggerated movements, but its fun for a kids' animated short. The show is set in the Central Asian country of Kazakhstan, but one wouldn't necessarily know from the animation, as it could be set in any hilly area. The universality of the setting is a bit at odds with the plot, which focuses heavily on Kazakh culture. I would have appreciated a more definitively Central Asian backdrop, but it's lovely nonetheless. The sets are well animated, with some lifelike plants and houses, and other details that stretch your imagination. The background music doesn't necessarily drive the action of the film. It's a flute piece with a constant tempo throughout the film and seems like stock music. On the other hand, the title track is carefully composed by Galymzhan Sekeev and sung by Yerzet Ramazanov. It's my favorite piece of music in the film, but I wish it had subtitles. Dinara Abikeeva, Tolykn Nurbekova and Daniyar Bazarkulov are the voice actors in this film. They provide a unique dimension to each character, speaking clearly, with some unique twists depending on the character. Though the film is in Kazakh, their clear diction lines up perfectly with the closed captions, making the film an easy watch. It's evident that the producer, Bakytkyzy Moldir, and director, Dilshat Rakhmatullin, have taken the utmost care in weaving together the film. I love the final scene of the film, with the constructed altybakan and bright colorful lights gleaming as the sky darkens. It's a lovely ending that brings the plot and several themes of the film together.

The message is "haste makes wastem" as Bulan says. Also, the film promotes cultural appreciation of Nauryz and Kazakh traditions. It does show kids doing risky things that kids might imitate such as when the characters are shown trying to play on a half-built swing.

I give this one 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 14. The film is educational and fun to watch; it's sure to be a hit with families across the globe! By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Clever Pranksters educates and enthralls viewers. Rich in Kazakh culture and beautifully animated, each character has its own special personality, accentuated by unique voice talent and an easy to follow plot.

In the Alatau mountains of Kazakhstan, four neighbors and friends, Maral, Bulan, Suyr and Insin are preparing for the Nauryz Festival, marking the beginning of spring and the Persian New Year. The four build an altybakan swing and are looking forward to eating special Nauryz kozhe, but Maral, Suyr and Insin's impatience nearly ruins the holiday.

I did not know much about Kazakh traditions, and this show enlightened me about how Kazakhs celebrate Nauryz. Additionally, even though the characters are animals, they show human values which makes watching the show even more fun and relatable. The animation is well executed; the shots of the friends' village in the mountains are picturesque, and the motion graphics (while not reflecting real life) are engaging as well. The characters have some exaggerated movements, but its fun for a kids' animated short. The show is set in the Central Asian country of Kazakhstan, but one wouldn't necessarily know from the animation, as it could be set in any hilly area. The universality of the setting is a bit at odds with the plot, which focuses heavily on Kazakh culture. I would have appreciated a more definitively Central Asian backdrop, but it's lovely nonetheless. The sets are well animated, with some lifelike plants and houses, and other details that stretch your imagination. The background music doesn't necessarily drive the action of the film. It's a flute piece with a constant tempo throughout the film and seems like stock music. On the other hand, the title track is carefully composed by Galymzhan Sekeev and sung by Yerzet Ramazanov. It's my favorite piece of music in the film, but I wish it had subtitles. Dinara Abikeeva, Tolykn Nurbekova and Daniyar Bazarkulov are the voice actors in this film. They provide a unique dimension to each character, speaking clearly, with some unique twists depending on the character. Though the film is in Kazakh, their clear diction lines up perfectly with the closed captions, making the film an easy watch. It's evident that the producer, Bakytkyzy Moldir, and director, Dilshat Rakhmatullin, have taken the utmost care in weaving together the film. I love the final scene of the film, with the constructed altybakan and bright colorful lights gleaming as the sky darkens. It's a lovely ending that brings the plot and several themes of the film together.

The message is "haste makes wastem" as Bulan says. Also, the film promotes cultural appreciation of Nauryz and Kazakh traditions. It does show kids doing risky things that kids might imitate such as when the characters are shown trying to play on a half-built swing.

I give this one 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 14. The film is educational and fun to watch; it's sure to be a hit with families across the globe! By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 7 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-15 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
SPIRAL, THE
SPIRAL, THE - IGOR BUZAEV
Series: STUDENT FILMS, AGES 12-18
Description - When I was a little girl, I saw a movie about space, where people of the future could treat painlessly without cuts. It became my dream, which my team and I were able to make true.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is a beautiful film, based on a true story. I love the emotions The Spiral portrays, as well as the underlying message about hope for the future.

The story is about a man with tremors who struggles to paint, so his daughter helps him recover.

The story is very engaging; I could feel the connections the characters have with each other. The camera quality is excellent; I especially like the way it contrasts certain shots. The settings are unremarkable, but they work for the film. The background music - primarily piano - helps set the tone. When tension rises, the music becomes more dramatic. The two main characters, the father and his daughter, have a very strong bond, and this is definitely what carries the film. The acting is very good; there is no dialogue, so body language and facial expressions tell their story. I was particularly touched when the man looks at a photograph of his daughter before he enters the MRI chamber; and then the ending, when he no longer has tremors - brought tears to my eyes. This film is based on a true story; there are miracles.

The message is that it is possible for your dreams to come true.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. It is very moving, and inspires hope for the future. Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This is a beautiful film, based on a true story. I love the emotions The Spiral portrays, as well as the underlying message about hope for the future.

The story is about a man with tremors who struggles to paint, so his daughter helps him recover.

The story is very engaging; I could feel the connections the characters have with each other. The camera quality is excellent; I especially like the way it contrasts certain shots. The settings are unremarkable, but they work for the film. The background music - primarily piano - helps set the tone. When tension rises, the music becomes more dramatic. The two main characters, the father and his daughter, have a very strong bond, and this is definitely what carries the film. The acting is very good; there is no dialogue, so body language and facial expressions tell their story. I was particularly touched when the man looks at a photograph of his daughter before he enters the MRI chamber; and then the ending, when he no longer has tremors - brought tears to my eyes. This film is based on a true story; there are miracles.

The message is that it is possible for your dreams to come true.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. It is very moving, and inspires hope for the future. Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 8 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
DAY BEFORE CREATION, THE
DAY BEFORE CREATION, THE - MIRA AMIRAS
Series: SHORTS, AGES 8 - 18
Description - Malkah is just a little kid when her father tries to teach her to read Torah. But they don't get very far. As Malkah reads aloud, her questions multiply. They take her on a lifelong journey deeper and deeper into Jewish mystical texts, far off places, encounters with ancient gods, and ultimately into the nature of existence itself. Malkah discovers an earlier, hidden creation story right inside the one offered on the surface of Genesis. A 38 minute animation in remembrance of Seymour Fromer, founder of the Magnes Museum in Berkeley CA
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The animation style in The Day before Creation is appealing, because it is unlike any other. It is incredibly detailed and consists of only a few colors. However, I found the plot hard to follow since I am not familiar with the religion.

The short film follows a little girl learning more about her language's alphabet with the help of her father and the Torah. The Torah is the law of God, as revealed to Moses, in Judaism and through this book the girl learns more about her culture.

The storyline is educational and is delivered in a well-paced way. However, at times the storyline moves very slowly and my attention drifted. The animation style is absolutely beautiful. It is crisp and reminds me of a Matisse painting, with angled images of people and places. The drawings are what most intrigued me of the film. The sets all are drawn beautifully. The main locations include the city, in buildings, on rooftops, or just floating with no tangible set. I love how simply the colors are because they contrast beautifully with the incredibly detailed lining of the drawings. The background music and narration are both calming sounds that are constant throughout the film. There aren't many changes in mood or tone during the film. The music matches the theme of discovery throughout. The narrator, Mira Z. Amiras, is also the writer, director and producer. Her voice is very calming and soothing which matches the film's theme. The illustrator and animator are Josh Baum and Samuel Baum respectively. The film taught me more about the Hebrew language, specifically what some of the characters look like and mean. My favorite part of the film is the beautifully drawn illustrations.

The message of this film is that learning and discovery are crucial to growth.

I give this film 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Although it could appeal to a wide audience, it would resonate best with those of the Jewish religion/culture. Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The animation style in The Day before Creation is appealing, because it is unlike any other. It is incredibly detailed and consists of only a few colors. However, I found the plot hard to follow since I am not familiar with the religion.

The short film follows a little girl learning more about her language's alphabet with the help of her father and the Torah. The Torah is the law of God, as revealed to Moses, in Judaism and through this book the girl learns more about her culture.

The storyline is educational and is delivered in a well-paced way. However, at times the storyline moves very slowly and my attention drifted. The animation style is absolutely beautiful. It is crisp and reminds me of a Matisse painting, with angled images of people and places. The drawings are what most intrigued me of the film. The sets all are drawn beautifully. The main locations include the city, in buildings, on rooftops, or just floating with no tangible set. I love how simply the colors are because they contrast beautifully with the incredibly detailed lining of the drawings. The background music and narration are both calming sounds that are constant throughout the film. There aren't many changes in mood or tone during the film. The music matches the theme of discovery throughout. The narrator, Mira Z. Amiras, is also the writer, director and producer. Her voice is very calming and soothing which matches the film's theme. The illustrator and animator are Josh Baum and Samuel Baum respectively. The film taught me more about the Hebrew language, specifically what some of the characters look like and mean. My favorite part of the film is the beautifully drawn illustrations.

The message of this film is that learning and discovery are crucial to growth.

I give this film 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Although it could appeal to a wide audience, it would resonate best with those of the Jewish religion/culture. Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 38 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
GROWING PEACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST
GROWING PEACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST - STEVEN HOFFEN
Series: STUDENT FILM, AGES 8-18
Description - A seventh grader from New York is inspired by a visit to Sindyanna of Galilee in Israel - a unique non-profit organization led by a team of Arab and Jewish women working together to create social change from the ground up. He spends the year during the pandemic inspired to document the new hydroponics project at Sindyanna, which strives to enhance Arab-Jewish cooperation, while creating economic opportunities for Arab women.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is not your average seventh grade student produced documentary. Director/producer Steven Hoffen takes a very mature approach in describing the hydroponics project at Sindyanna, offers Arab-Jewish cooperation and creates economic opportunities for Arab women.

Inspired by an initial visit there, Steven spent time during quarantine to create this inspiring documentary. So, the interviews are all recorded online via Zoom or similar, and Steven's narrative appears to be recorded using the same technique. It works; the message comes across loud and clear. The visuals of the hydroponic operation show us how it all works and are well shot, well edited and do their job.

This inspired me to want to visit this project and learn more. I love the political implications here of the Arab-Jewish people working together.

Although this is more educational than most KIDS FIRST! Film Festival films, the content is so relevant to contemporary life and what the future of food production might look like, and hence relevant to our audiences.

I give this 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This is not your average seventh grade student produced documentary. Director/producer Steven Hoffen takes a very mature approach in describing the hydroponics project at Sindyanna, offers Arab-Jewish cooperation and creates economic opportunities for Arab women.

Inspired by an initial visit there, Steven spent time during quarantine to create this inspiring documentary. So, the interviews are all recorded online via Zoom or similar, and Steven's narrative appears to be recorded using the same technique. It works; the message comes across loud and clear. The visuals of the hydroponic operation show us how it all works and are well shot, well edited and do their job.

This inspired me to want to visit this project and learn more. I love the political implications here of the Arab-Jewish people working together.

Although this is more educational than most KIDS FIRST! Film Festival films, the content is so relevant to contemporary life and what the future of food production might look like, and hence relevant to our audiences.

I give this 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 18 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
HIDE & SEEK
HIDE & SEEK - SHOORVEER TYAGI
Series: SHORTS, AGES 12-18
Description - This is the story of a small girl who wants to play Hide & Seek with her father unaware with the nature of the game.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The subtlety of the story in Hide & Seek, and the vagueness of the plot, leaves you wondering what happened.

The story follows a little girl that wants to play hide and seek with her father, but is unable to.

I like how the story is presented and how relatable it is to modern times, given that this story is about COVID-19. The story is subtle yet impactful. A lot of it is implied, so you're left wondering what really happened. For example, the mother plays the role of Daddy by putting on a stethoscope. We are left to wonder if Daddy was a doctor that has died during the pandemic; we don't actually know and never find out. The camera angles are from the little girl's perspective for most of the film, so the world feels small and confined. Later, when the mother appears, it moves to mid-level. The film takes places entirely inside a house, and this enhances the feeling of confinement. The characters are not remarkable. However the acting is pretty good, especially by Tvisha Tyagi, who plays the little girl.

The message of the film is about how the pandemic has made it hard for families, especially children. That and, we need to remember to support healthcare workers and those affected by the pandemic.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18. This would play well at any festival that is showing films made during or about the pandemic. Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The subtlety of the story in Hide & Seek, and the vagueness of the plot, leaves you wondering what happened.

The story follows a little girl that wants to play hide and seek with her father, but is unable to.

I like how the story is presented and how relatable it is to modern times, given that this story is about COVID-19. The story is subtle yet impactful. A lot of it is implied, so you're left wondering what really happened. For example, the mother plays the role of Daddy by putting on a stethoscope. We are left to wonder if Daddy was a doctor that has died during the pandemic; we don't actually know and never find out. The camera angles are from the little girl's perspective for most of the film, so the world feels small and confined. Later, when the mother appears, it moves to mid-level. The film takes places entirely inside a house, and this enhances the feeling of confinement. The characters are not remarkable. However the acting is pretty good, especially by Tvisha Tyagi, who plays the little girl.

The message of the film is about how the pandemic has made it hard for families, especially children. That and, we need to remember to support healthcare workers and those affected by the pandemic.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18. This would play well at any festival that is showing films made during or about the pandemic. Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17
Runtime: 5 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
STAR BOUND
STAR BOUND - STORYCORPS
Series: DOCUMENTARY
Description - Joey Jefferson, a Mission Operations Engineer at NASA, talks with his outer space-obsessed six-year-old nephew Jerry Morrison. Together they explore why space is so fascinating, where they would live if they could choose another planet, and how much more we have to discover. As Joey says, "my hope is that you are always going to be doing and learning about the things that you love the most."
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The animation and art style of Star Bound is especially charming; it looks as though it was drawn with crayons, which is cute. Plus the conversation between a Mission Operations Engineer at NASA and his 6-year-old nephew is very real and genuine.

The documentary is a discussion by a NASA engineer and his young nephew about space and what they wish to discover.

This film is so cute, especially if you have a love for space. It's an animated conversation between a professional adult and a six-year-old. Most of the film is made of drawings of space. The art style is very information and juvenile. In addition to the space setting is a stairway entrance to house where the two appear to be seated while having their conversation. There is minimal background music and it's nothing noteworthy. The characters are based on real people, although they are animated in the film. However, their conversation is very genuine. The simple, yet charming animation is the most notable thing about the film.

The message is that the universe is so vast and filled with things to discover.

I give Star Bound 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 18, plus adults interested in space exploration. Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The animation and art style of Star Bound is especially charming; it looks as though it was drawn with crayons, which is cute. Plus the conversation between a Mission Operations Engineer at NASA and his 6-year-old nephew is very real and genuine.

The documentary is a discussion by a NASA engineer and his young nephew about space and what they wish to discover.

This film is so cute, especially if you have a love for space. It's an animated conversation between a professional adult and a six-year-old. Most of the film is made of drawings of space. The art style is very information and juvenile. In addition to the space setting is a stairway entrance to house where the two appear to be seated while having their conversation. There is minimal background music and it's nothing noteworthy. The characters are based on real people, although they are animated in the film. However, their conversation is very genuine. The simple, yet charming animation is the most notable thing about the film.

The message is that the universe is so vast and filled with things to discover.

I give Star Bound 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 18, plus adults interested in space exploration. Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic
Runtime: 3 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-15 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
RABBITS UNDER THE SHED
RABBITS UNDER THE SHED - MIA STEGNER
Series: SHORTS, AGES 5-18
Description - After a disagreement with her mom, 8-year-old Natalie runs away -- all the way to her backyard, where she meets a family of rabbits and decides to move in with them. Songs are sung and friends are made in this sweet, funny short film about building trust, overcoming fear, and connecting across difference to make room for everyone.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The animated musical film Rabbits Under The Shed is very unique. With rabbits talking and vegetarian hawks, this is sure to get you laughing and teach you an important message.

The story follows Natalie (Emmi McIntosh) who runs away from home and finds a family of rabbits to live with. It turns out that the rabbits can talk and they end up accepting Natalie into their family.

I like how this story is told. Natalie's mom in the beginning has a wonderfully dry sense of humor. Natalie has a bit of an attitude, but she comes around. This story is a musical. It is fun to watch and the songs are delightful; the singers have lovely voices - all appropriate for their animated characters. The animation is 2D; it's simple, sweet, and it brings the story to life. The main human character is Natalie (Emmi McIntosh) and, in the bunny family, there is Dad Bradley (Jon Holewinski), Mom Beth (Fiona Torrese), Brody (Nolan Bunting), Blake (David Greene) and Bella (Darwin Shire). My favorite part is when Brody, who was not very inclusive, finally becomes inclusive at the end says, "And put me down," which I liked because I have bunnies and know that they don't like being picked up.

The message is about being inclusive, especially with people who are different than we are.

I give this one 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 12, because it has a good message and also teaches use about the animal kingdom. Reviewed by Avalon N., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The animated musical film Rabbits Under The Shed is very unique. With rabbits talking and vegetarian hawks, this is sure to get you laughing and teach you an important message.

The story follows Natalie (Emmi McIntosh) who runs away from home and finds a family of rabbits to live with. It turns out that the rabbits can talk and they end up accepting Natalie into their family.

I like how this story is told. Natalie's mom in the beginning has a wonderfully dry sense of humor. Natalie has a bit of an attitude, but she comes around. This story is a musical. It is fun to watch and the songs are delightful; the singers have lovely voices - all appropriate for their animated characters. The animation is 2D; it's simple, sweet, and it brings the story to life. The main human character is Natalie (Emmi McIntosh) and, in the bunny family, there is Dad Bradley (Jon Holewinski), Mom Beth (Fiona Torrese), Brody (Nolan Bunting), Blake (David Greene) and Bella (Darwin Shire). My favorite part is when Brody, who was not very inclusive, finally becomes inclusive at the end says, "And put me down," which I liked because I have bunnies and know that they don't like being picked up.

The message is about being inclusive, especially with people who are different than we are.

I give this one 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 12, because it has a good message and also teaches use about the animal kingdom. Reviewed by Avalon N., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 25 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
ZERO GRAVITY
ZERO GRAVITY - THOMAS VERRETTE
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 7 -18
Description - A diverse group of middle-school students go on the journey of a lifetime when they compete in a nationwide competition sponsored by MIT to code satellites aboard the International Space Station.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Zero Gravity is a very good and motivational movie! I like that it's very pertinent to the idea of space exploration, something that is very relevant in today's world. I also like the determination of the group, which is mostly young, middle school students that are willing to commit to this project and persevere no matter how difficult it is. I also like the struggle that is portrayed with coding and the idea that tuning into perfection is needed for it to be totally operational.

The documentary follows a group of diverse middle school students and their teacher who is very interested in space as they undertake a massive project - programming a satellite on the space station. There will be many rounds they go through before they reach the final step. The amount of struggles will either make or break the team and sometimes, a small mistake can be the difference between making it and missing it.

I like that the story line talks about this group of kids with diverse backgrounds and different interests yet, they come together as a team and manage to work through a variety of challenges. I also like that it talks about the background of the kids. The footage that is included of the space shuttle taking off and landing on a planet makes it appealing to audiences. I also like that even when they did not qualify for the finals, they were still willing to lend a hand to help the team that made it and they represented their state that way instead of being disappointed or frustrated with the loss.

The camera work are impressive, especially the first person shots, which make the audience walk in the shoes of the characters on-screen. The location of the kids is a middle school in San Jose, CA and some of their homes. I like seeing the house of the teacher's father, which is decorated with NASA memorabilia and engineering things which shows us that he is someone who worked for NASA at some point.

The background music effectively sets the mood. At the beginning it is rather lighthearted as the kids are intrigued and interested by the idea. The music then becomes more tense as they are racing against the deadline to submit their project. After the project is submitted, it becomes celebratory as they have just finished this big project.

The teacher pushes the team no matter what difficulties they find themselves in and guides the team to excel. The teacher's father comes into play as he guides his son in how to bring his team to success. The students have diverse interests and we see how easily distracted they are before they get focused and get busy once they know the task they are up against.

The messages of this film are: 1. Do not give up, even when faced with monumental challenges.2. Try something new, even if it's outside your comfort zone. 3. Don't look at the small picture, look at the big picture. Plus it supports the idea of teamwork and sportsmanship.

My favorite part of the film is when the team gets the news that they did not make it but they still go ahead and give a helping hand to the team that made it. This displays their sportsmanship as they want their state to be the strongest even if they did not make it.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18 to adults. It can be a way to introduce coding to young people and it definitely inspires people in realizing that even the hardest obstacles can be overcome with determination. It talks about programming, satellites and a camp that attempts to get their hands to run their program in the International Space Station.

Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Zero Gravity is a very good and motivational movie! I like that it's very pertinent to the idea of space exploration, something that is very relevant in today's world. I also like the determination of the group, which is mostly young, middle school students that are willing to commit to this project and persevere no matter how difficult it is. I also like the struggle that is portrayed with coding and the idea that tuning into perfection is needed for it to be totally operational.

The documentary follows a group of diverse middle school students and their teacher who is very interested in space as they undertake a massive project - programming a satellite on the space station. There will be many rounds they go through before they reach the final step. The amount of struggles will either make or break the team and sometimes, a small mistake can be the difference between making it and missing it.

I like that the story line talks about this group of kids with diverse backgrounds and different interests yet, they come together as a team and manage to work through a variety of challenges. I also like that it talks about the background of the kids. The footage that is included of the space shuttle taking off and landing on a planet makes it appealing to audiences. I also like that even when they did not qualify for the finals, they were still willing to lend a hand to help the team that made it and they represented their state that way instead of being disappointed or frustrated with the loss.

The camera work are impressive, especially the first person shots, which make the audience walk in the shoes of the characters on-screen. The location of the kids is a middle school in San Jose, CA and some of their homes. I like seeing the house of the teacher's father, which is decorated with NASA memorabilia and engineering things which shows us that he is someone who worked for NASA at some point.

The background music effectively sets the mood. At the beginning it is rather lighthearted as the kids are intrigued and interested by the idea. The music then becomes more tense as they are racing against the deadline to submit their project. After the project is submitted, it becomes celebratory as they have just finished this big project.

The teacher pushes the team no matter what difficulties they find themselves in and guides the team to excel. The teacher's father comes into play as he guides his son in how to bring his team to success. The students have diverse interests and we see how easily distracted they are before they get focused and get busy once they know the task they are up against.

The messages of this film are: 1. Do not give up, even when faced with monumental challenges.2. Try something new, even if it's outside your comfort zone. 3. Don't look at the small picture, look at the big picture. Plus it supports the idea of teamwork and sportsmanship.

My favorite part of the film is when the team gets the news that they did not make it but they still go ahead and give a helping hand to the team that made it. This displays their sportsmanship as they want their state to be the strongest even if they did not make it.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18 to adults. It can be a way to introduce coding to young people and it definitely inspires people in realizing that even the hardest obstacles can be overcome with determination. It talks about programming, satellites and a camp that attempts to get their hands to run their program in the International Space Station.

Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 65 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 7-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
75 DEGREES WEST
75 DEGREES WEST - THOMAS PARRISH
Series: STUDENT FEATURE, AGES 15-18
Description - Civilization has fallen after a prolonged pandemic. Two brothers wander through a post-pandemic world, trying to survive as they travel across the US countryside. They journey toward 75� West, surviving as best they can on what they can find as they try to avoid human dangers along the way.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - 75 Degrees West is a really good adventure movie. The camera work is really good. The sets are pertinent to the idea of this story - survival. Lastly, I like that the supporting characters play roles that make it more real. An example is when the boys' bags are stolen by a lone traveler as he was really hungry, which makes sense from a survival point of view.

Civilization has fallen after a prolonged pandemic and two boys, Zach and Jack embark on a dangerous adventure after their parents have passed away, hoping to get help. Along the way, they see many dangers and have to put their bond and survival skills on the line.

I like that the film tries to show this is not a fake thing with the news reports going off from a multitude of countries. It stays true to the idea of survival as the actors grab only minimal resources that they need to survive, which also make it feel real. Lastly, the scenes of looting and car theft when the boys steal a pickup after a man hunts them down, also support the idea of survival, showing that everyone is on their own.

I like the close-up shots throughout this film; they are really on point in conveying the emotions of the characters. When Tom, Zach's brother, knows that he is not going to make it, we see his tears streaming down his face. In another scene which is a flashback, the camera captures their house, showing where they came from before they go out on their own. The location in a forest depicts an abandoned civilization, which is makes the aftermath of the pandemic look real as we see abandoned places and rusted out equipment. There is a lot of walking in the forest, which shows the boys trying to survive and trying to stay low profile. The background music is well chosen to support the various scenes, particularly the song playing during the ending credits which makes direct reference to the boys' experience. The song is sung in a heavy hearted voice, which supports their difficult journey that killed one of the boys. The lyrics, "It gets harder to carry the weight of what I've done, I am speaking from experience," relate to Zach having to deal with the aftermath of his brother, Tom getting shot when he made a clumsy mistake and alerted the shooter to their presence. The actors give admirable performances. My favorite part is when the shooter's gun jams as he is trying to reload and the boys' steal the guy's truck. He gets what he deserves for trying to shoot the boys.

The message of this film is: Do not give up; even though it may take time and effort, you will make it. You should be aware that it contains bloody, gory acts of violence, shooting and the guns.

I give 75 Degrees West 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 16 to 18, plus adults. By Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - 75 Degrees West is a really good adventure movie. The camera work is really good. The sets are pertinent to the idea of this story - survival. Lastly, I like that the supporting characters play roles that make it more real. An example is when the boys' bags are stolen by a lone traveler as he was really hungry, which makes sense from a survival point of view.

Civilization has fallen after a prolonged pandemic and two boys, Zach and Jack embark on a dangerous adventure after their parents have passed away, hoping to get help. Along the way, they see many dangers and have to put their bond and survival skills on the line.

I like that the film tries to show this is not a fake thing with the news reports going off from a multitude of countries. It stays true to the idea of survival as the actors grab only minimal resources that they need to survive, which also make it feel real. Lastly, the scenes of looting and car theft when the boys steal a pickup after a man hunts them down, also support the idea of survival, showing that everyone is on their own.

I like the close-up shots throughout this film; they are really on point in conveying the emotions of the characters. When Tom, Zach's brother, knows that he is not going to make it, we see his tears streaming down his face. In another scene which is a flashback, the camera captures their house, showing where they came from before they go out on their own. The location in a forest depicts an abandoned civilization, which is makes the aftermath of the pandemic look real as we see abandoned places and rusted out equipment. There is a lot of walking in the forest, which shows the boys trying to survive and trying to stay low profile. The background music is well chosen to support the various scenes, particularly the song playing during the ending credits which makes direct reference to the boys' experience. The song is sung in a heavy hearted voice, which supports their difficult journey that killed one of the boys. The lyrics, "It gets harder to carry the weight of what I've done, I am speaking from experience," relate to Zach having to deal with the aftermath of his brother, Tom getting shot when he made a clumsy mistake and alerted the shooter to their presence. The actors give admirable performances. My favorite part is when the shooter's gun jams as he is trying to reload and the boys' steal the guy's truck. He gets what he deserves for trying to shoot the boys.

The message of this film is: Do not give up; even though it may take time and effort, you will make it. You should be aware that it contains bloody, gory acts of violence, shooting and the guns.

I give 75 Degrees West 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 16 to 18, plus adults. By Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 60 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 15-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
ROTI
ROTI - ARIELLA KHAN
Series: SHORTS, AGES 12-18
Description - Homecoming is around the corner and Sarah needs a dress. Though she has the perfect one in mind, her mother insists it is too short and takes it upon herself to sew up a solution. With the help of some sick beats, fresh roti and a well-meaning but overlooked classmate Henry, Sarah finds the beauty in the different parts of her identity.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I enjoyed Roti because it shows typical teenager behaviors as Sarah and Henry have their own opinions. Henry is trying to keep secret his bad report card. Sarah is frustrated with her dress and wanting to wear what she wants.

The story is about the upcoming homecoming and Sarah wanting to have a dress of her style but her mom has a different opinion. After taking her mind off the dress while drumming and chatting with Henry, she changes her attitude towards the dress.

The story portrays the mind of teenagers perfectly. When Sarah sees the dress that her mother sews for her, she says that it is ugly and wants her own style. Later on, after having a meal with Henry, Sarah had a different view about the dress. This aptly shows how most teenagers fluctuate between opinions quickly. The camera work is well done. For example, after the trio (Sarah, Sarah's mom and Henry) have lunch and go practice drumming, Henry's sarcasm is well displayed when he talks about his bad report card and he portrays a lighthearted mood despite knowing it is a bad thing. Later, when they are cooking the pita bread, there is a close up shot of the pita bread showing the fully cooked pita, which can intrigue some cooking enthusiasts. The locations include a foreign market, the house. I like seeing them shop at te foreign food market because it shows the traditional values that the previous generation holds. The house, which is well organized and clean, is something I also like as it gives a clean look. I dislike that there are not a lot of details shown at the market as it only focuses on aisles, which makes it not stand out from any supermarket. The background music is mostly upbeat music, which makes the upcoming homecoming feel exciting. The drumming is also upbeat, which serves effectively as a transition from the previous scenes, which started with Henry invited for lunch at Sarah's house. It displays that positive things will occur, such as Sarah accepting the dress. The actors are well selected for their roles. My favorite part is when Sarah realizes that the dress is really good even though she made so many negative comments about it.

The message of the film is you have to accept parts of your identity.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I enjoyed Roti because it shows typical teenager behaviors as Sarah and Henry have their own opinions. Henry is trying to keep secret his bad report card. Sarah is frustrated with her dress and wanting to wear what she wants.

The story is about the upcoming homecoming and Sarah wanting to have a dress of her style but her mom has a different opinion. After taking her mind off the dress while drumming and chatting with Henry, she changes her attitude towards the dress.

The story portrays the mind of teenagers perfectly. When Sarah sees the dress that her mother sews for her, she says that it is ugly and wants her own style. Later on, after having a meal with Henry, Sarah had a different view about the dress. This aptly shows how most teenagers fluctuate between opinions quickly. The camera work is well done. For example, after the trio (Sarah, Sarah's mom and Henry) have lunch and go practice drumming, Henry's sarcasm is well displayed when he talks about his bad report card and he portrays a lighthearted mood despite knowing it is a bad thing. Later, when they are cooking the pita bread, there is a close up shot of the pita bread showing the fully cooked pita, which can intrigue some cooking enthusiasts. The locations include a foreign market, the house. I like seeing them shop at te foreign food market because it shows the traditional values that the previous generation holds. The house, which is well organized and clean, is something I also like as it gives a clean look. I dislike that there are not a lot of details shown at the market as it only focuses on aisles, which makes it not stand out from any supermarket. The background music is mostly upbeat music, which makes the upcoming homecoming feel exciting. The drumming is also upbeat, which serves effectively as a transition from the previous scenes, which started with Henry invited for lunch at Sarah's house. It displays that positive things will occur, such as Sarah accepting the dress. The actors are well selected for their roles. My favorite part is when Sarah realizes that the dress is really good even though she made so many negative comments about it.

The message of the film is you have to accept parts of your identity.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. REviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 11 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
LIFT: AN ODE TO LOVE & SKI JUMPING
LIFT: AN ODE TO LOVE & SKI JUMPING - MARYANNE GALVIN
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12 - 18
Description - An homage to those who emboldened him with courage and grit, an international ski jump judge reflects on 50 years in competitive sports In 1970, if you lived in New England, you thought about the Boston Bruins and Orr. All the time. Unless you were Mark Levasseur, a 10-year-old gifted athlete from Worcester, MA. Mark was laser focused on emulating his father's esteemed ski jumping record and becoming the next Bobby Orr. LIFT: An Ode to Love recounts Levasseur's fifty-year journey in competitive sports. The short film is realized via archival footage, action-packed hockey and ski jumping, and a compelling interview. Levasseur pays tribute to the man and the sports community he credits with emboldening him with courage, compassion and grit.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The story and moral of Lift: An Ode to Love & Ski Jumping is amazing! I like that it takes us back to sports in the 6's and 70s. I also like the graphics which look like an old black and while movie.

This film is about a ski jumping athlete narrating his journey and the support his father and mother offered him during his years of ski jumping. The film is presented as an old black and white movie with music reminiscent of old movies too. The message the narrator wants to highlight is to honor your parents because they are your support system for anything you choose in life.

I like how the narrator tells the audience to love your parents because they are your support when it comes to sports. I like that he tells his parents' story and how they support him in ski jumping. The scenes are a mix of old sport films, home family films and ski jumping films. The locations are incredible ski jumping locations. The instrumental music reminds me of music used for old movies. The key influencers here are the narrator and his parents. When you watch this you take note that this sport is very intense and kind of dangerous. It is interesting to learn more about this sport, which is not as easy as it looks. I particularly enjoyed listening to the narrator explain the body position when ski jumping.

The message of this film is about honoring your father and your mother. Be aware that it does show kids doing risky things that kids might imitate.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The story and moral of Lift: An Ode to Love & Ski Jumping is amazing! I like that it takes us back to sports in the 6's and 70s. I also like the graphics which look like an old black and while movie.

This film is about a ski jumping athlete narrating his journey and the support his father and mother offered him during his years of ski jumping. The film is presented as an old black and white movie with music reminiscent of old movies too. The message the narrator wants to highlight is to honor your parents because they are your support system for anything you choose in life.

I like how the narrator tells the audience to love your parents because they are your support when it comes to sports. I like that he tells his parents' story and how they support him in ski jumping. The scenes are a mix of old sport films, home family films and ski jumping films. The locations are incredible ski jumping locations. The instrumental music reminds me of music used for old movies. The key influencers here are the narrator and his parents. When you watch this you take note that this sport is very intense and kind of dangerous. It is interesting to learn more about this sport, which is not as easy as it looks. I particularly enjoyed listening to the narrator explain the body position when ski jumping.

The message of this film is about honoring your father and your mother. Be aware that it does show kids doing risky things that kids might imitate.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 7 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
FOUR MOTHERLESS CHILDREN
FOUR MOTHERLESS CHILDREN - RALPH ISENBERG
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12-18
Description - This film tells the heartbreaking story of four children, all minors and citizens of the United States, forced to fend for themselves for eleven months while their mother found herself exiled in El Salvador. The mother had already been in the United States for seventeen years under "Temporary Protected Status." Her renewal for an additional year was already approved but completely ignored by the United States Government. A daring rescue plan was put in place a few days before New Year's Day. The story of the rescue leaves most people who learn of it speechless. Based on a true story.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Four Motherless Children is a great, yet filled with sadness movie. There are real setbacks involved with trying to get the children's mother back. The characters express genuine emotions such as when expressing their frustration with the person that is helping the children get their mother back. There is some profanity and gun violence. The immigration issue is real and this addresses it.

The story is about a visit to El Salvador that goes awry and the children are separated from their mother. They turn to El Gringo Schindler for help after watching TV and visit his office. He promises them that their mother will be rejoined with them. El Gringo Schindler's immigration knowledge and personal safety are put to test getting the family together and the mission is filled with frustrations, broken communication and uncreative airport staff.

I like that this film addresses a real issue that is pertinent to many immigrants. It takes place in El Salvador, where the language is Spanish. The protagonist is determined to get through and he sleeps at the airport and asks the staff again to allow the children's mother to get through. The action is very realistic, such as when the children's grandmother gets a heart attack and falls on the ground, which is kind of tragic.

The camera scenes that impressed me the most are the medium close-ups and long shots. For example, when El Gringo Schindler, gets increasingly frustrated with the efforts of the agencies he contacts and the airport staff, we see his face filled with sadness. The long shots are used to display a new scene and new location. The sets are well created - the office, airport, grandma's home, a hotel and hospital. The office portrays a typical office filled with papers. The airport is a typical airport setting. Grandma's house portrays a typical house in El Salvador. The hotel is also a typical low price hotel room in El Salvador. It stays real, not overly clean or futuristic. That is also true with the office. The locations are Dallas, Texas and EL Salvador. The airport scene only shows the line instead of the entire location. The actors give admirable performances. My favorite part is near the end, after countless attempts to make the mother board the plane, the guard decides to bring the two children to the plane. It shows that even something or someone extremely unlikely can help and also displays the idea that if you keep trying, you will eventually succeed.

The message of the film is to not give up hope, even when the goal looks impossible. You should be aware that it does contain some profanity and has some gun violence.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18 to adults. The subject may be disturbing to some people so be thoughtful about whether or not it suits your audience. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Four Motherless Children is a great, yet filled with sadness movie. There are real setbacks involved with trying to get the children's mother back. The characters express genuine emotions such as when expressing their frustration with the person that is helping the children get their mother back. There is some profanity and gun violence. The immigration issue is real and this addresses it.

The story is about a visit to El Salvador that goes awry and the children are separated from their mother. They turn to El Gringo Schindler for help after watching TV and visit his office. He promises them that their mother will be rejoined with them. El Gringo Schindler's immigration knowledge and personal safety are put to test getting the family together and the mission is filled with frustrations, broken communication and uncreative airport staff.

I like that this film addresses a real issue that is pertinent to many immigrants. It takes place in El Salvador, where the language is Spanish. The protagonist is determined to get through and he sleeps at the airport and asks the staff again to allow the children's mother to get through. The action is very realistic, such as when the children's grandmother gets a heart attack and falls on the ground, which is kind of tragic.

The camera scenes that impressed me the most are the medium close-ups and long shots. For example, when El Gringo Schindler, gets increasingly frustrated with the efforts of the agencies he contacts and the airport staff, we see his face filled with sadness. The long shots are used to display a new scene and new location. The sets are well created - the office, airport, grandma's home, a hotel and hospital. The office portrays a typical office filled with papers. The airport is a typical airport setting. Grandma's house portrays a typical house in El Salvador. The hotel is also a typical low price hotel room in El Salvador. It stays real, not overly clean or futuristic. That is also true with the office. The locations are Dallas, Texas and EL Salvador. The airport scene only shows the line instead of the entire location. The actors give admirable performances. My favorite part is near the end, after countless attempts to make the mother board the plane, the guard decides to bring the two children to the plane. It shows that even something or someone extremely unlikely can help and also displays the idea that if you keep trying, you will eventually succeed.

The message of the film is to not give up hope, even when the goal looks impossible. You should be aware that it does contain some profanity and has some gun violence.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18 to adults. The subject may be disturbing to some people so be thoughtful about whether or not it suits your audience. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 54 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
RED JUNIOR AND THE WOLF
RED JUNIOR AND THE WOLF - WINNIE WU
Series: STUDENT FILM, AGES 4-8
Description - In a fairytale world, Red Riding Hood's granddaughter is best friends with Wolfie, a young wolf. Granny Red doesn't like wolves because of her past experience, but Wolfie is nothing like the infamous Big Bad Wolf.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Little Red Riding Hood is back in this animation short, Red Junior and the Wolf! It is enjoyable to see Red Riding Hood all grown up with a granddaughter, Red Junior. This has a creative story that brings back a familiar character while drawing you into the story with new loveable characters.

The story follows Little Red Riding Hood as a grandmother and her granddaughter Red Junior. Red Junior has made new friends that own a bakery. However, her new friends are wolves and her grandma is not fond of wolves - for obvious reasons.

The storyline has a clear problem and solution with a meaningful message. However, I have an issue with the lack of dialogue by the characters, instead they utter guttural sound. Granted, there are thought bubbles that get their ideas across, but the lack of dialogue is disappointing. I was really impressed with the details in every scene. In the grandmother's house the background has teapots, family portraits and dishes which make it feel more realistic. Then, additional characters are included from other nursery rhymes and fairytales. The locations are very pretty. The sunset and town scenes are beautifully drawn. The old town where the wolves' bakery is located has an old fashioned town look that feels like it belongs in an fairytale. The background music is upbeat and fun. My favorite part is when the grandmother gives the young wolf a red scarf. It shows that she is sorry for her past actions and that she accepts him as a friend now. You can even see the wolf's tail wag which is a neat detail.

The message of this film is about forgiveness and not judging someone before you get to know them. The grandmother had one bad experience with a wolf so she has a prejudice against wolves. She soon learns that she needs to give individual wolves a chance.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 4 to 10. It is an interesting to look more into Little Red Riding Hood's life after her encounter with the wolf when she was younger. Reviewed by Carlee S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Little Red Riding Hood is back in this animation short, Red Junior and the Wolf! It is enjoyable to see Red Riding Hood all grown up with a granddaughter, Red Junior. This has a creative story that brings back a familiar character while drawing you into the story with new loveable characters.

The story follows Little Red Riding Hood as a grandmother and her granddaughter Red Junior. Red Junior has made new friends that own a bakery. However, her new friends are wolves and her grandma is not fond of wolves - for obvious reasons.

The storyline has a clear problem and solution with a meaningful message. However, I have an issue with the lack of dialogue by the characters, instead they utter guttural sound. Granted, there are thought bubbles that get their ideas across, but the lack of dialogue is disappointing. I was really impressed with the details in every scene. In the grandmother's house the background has teapots, family portraits and dishes which make it feel more realistic. Then, additional characters are included from other nursery rhymes and fairytales. The locations are very pretty. The sunset and town scenes are beautifully drawn. The old town where the wolves' bakery is located has an old fashioned town look that feels like it belongs in an fairytale. The background music is upbeat and fun. My favorite part is when the grandmother gives the young wolf a red scarf. It shows that she is sorry for her past actions and that she accepts him as a friend now. You can even see the wolf's tail wag which is a neat detail.

The message of this film is about forgiveness and not judging someone before you get to know them. The grandmother had one bad experience with a wolf so she has a prejudice against wolves. She soon learns that she needs to give individual wolves a chance.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 4 to 10. It is an interesting to look more into Little Red Riding Hood's life after her encounter with the wolf when she was younger. Reviewed by Carlee S., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 5 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
SURF GUARD
SURF GUARD - NICOLE BORGES
Series: EPISODICS, AGES 8-18
Description - A children's comedy set against the background of surf culture, Surf Guard is protector of the shore and the waves at the popular west coast destination, Sand Surf Swim Beach. With his trusted team of City Planner Deb, and Nerf, they work together to de-escalate, keep things groovy, and hold a watchful eye over the always menacing Kiki the Kook. Surf Guard is all about being righteous to each other and maintaining community accountability.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Surf Guard is a lighthearted movie that teaches valuable lessons. I particularly enjoyed the music which keeps the idea of being on a beach a fun thing to do. The bully, who acts out in funny ways with his voice and his way of reacting to the surf guards is also something I like.

The story follows Kiki the Kook as he starts to disturb people's lives on the beach and Surf Guards find ways to catch him and also teach valuable lessons.

It's a short film that packs a powerful lesson. I dislike when the Surf Guard is tasting dog droppings because it is kind of disgusting, even if they are fake. The voice of Kiki the Kook and his reactions to the surf guards whenever he gets caught is something I like.

There are a lot of impressive camera angles and shots. The close-ups when the Surf Guard is tracking down the animal that left its dropping and its owner stand out. The shot of the Surf Guard in exile is also another impressive shot with the character's eyes and facial emotion filled with regret and fear. The low angle shot when the surf guards arrive after Kiki the Kook is caught displays the guards look heroic. The location is on the beach. The background music is typical beach music, very lighthearted and fun. The music after the surf guard moves on from his mistake displays his new found confidence, which serves as a transition to his short exile life. The song near the end of the final episode is a narrative of surf adventures in the city. The actors give admirable and funny performances. Keith Roenke, who portrays Kiki the Kook makes the character a comical bully, which is entertaining instead of a serious thing (despite bullying being a very serious thing). The actors portraying the surf guards seem more like hero figures, with high angle shots and their body language. The camera work is excellent. The screenplay is funny and lighthearted. My favorite is when the surf guard makes the mistake of walking in the bike lane and almost gets hit and feels really guilty about it and decides to exile in the cave. After he is discovered by his friends who support him to move on and apologize, we can relate to that.

The message of the film is: do not be a bully as there will be someone watching the action. The Surf Guard eating dog droppings is a bit disgusting, but otherwise, this is completely kid and family friendly.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults.This episodic show teaches valuable life lessons about bullying and friendship. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Surf Guard is a lighthearted movie that teaches valuable lessons. I particularly enjoyed the music which keeps the idea of being on a beach a fun thing to do. The bully, who acts out in funny ways with his voice and his way of reacting to the surf guards is also something I like.

The story follows Kiki the Kook as he starts to disturb people's lives on the beach and Surf Guards find ways to catch him and also teach valuable lessons.

It's a short film that packs a powerful lesson. I dislike when the Surf Guard is tasting dog droppings because it is kind of disgusting, even if they are fake. The voice of Kiki the Kook and his reactions to the surf guards whenever he gets caught is something I like.

There are a lot of impressive camera angles and shots. The close-ups when the Surf Guard is tracking down the animal that left its dropping and its owner stand out. The shot of the Surf Guard in exile is also another impressive shot with the character's eyes and facial emotion filled with regret and fear. The low angle shot when the surf guards arrive after Kiki the Kook is caught displays the guards look heroic. The location is on the beach. The background music is typical beach music, very lighthearted and fun. The music after the surf guard moves on from his mistake displays his new found confidence, which serves as a transition to his short exile life. The song near the end of the final episode is a narrative of surf adventures in the city. The actors give admirable and funny performances. Keith Roenke, who portrays Kiki the Kook makes the character a comical bully, which is entertaining instead of a serious thing (despite bullying being a very serious thing). The actors portraying the surf guards seem more like hero figures, with high angle shots and their body language. The camera work is excellent. The screenplay is funny and lighthearted. My favorite is when the surf guard makes the mistake of walking in the bike lane and almost gets hit and feels really guilty about it and decides to exile in the cave. After he is discovered by his friends who support him to move on and apologize, we can relate to that.

The message of the film is: do not be a bully as there will be someone watching the action. The Surf Guard eating dog droppings is a bit disgusting, but otherwise, this is completely kid and family friendly.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults.This episodic show teaches valuable life lessons about bullying and friendship. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 20 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
ROCKLAND RELAY
ROCKLAND RELAY - MAURA SMITH
Series: SHORTS, AGES 12-18
Description - Rockland Relay follows Rachel, a young girl whose parents move her across the country just as she is about to start high school. Rachel finds herself stuck in a new town with no friends and only her snotty older sister to talk to. Quickly, Rachel meets a group of tough as nails girls whose one concern is winning this year's Rockland Relay.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Rockland Relay is a really moving movie! I like the entire process of the main character having to deal with the difficulties of adapting to new surroundings. A good example of this is when she is sitting in the trailer and looking through the images of her old friends and with a reflectively sad face. I also like the sibling relationship, which is well portrayed when she asks her older sister to borrow her bike after knowing the bike relay race that she learned about. Her sister has conditions - a month of chores. The entire idea of teamwork is well portrayed and the disappointment and frustration of losing to the same team that dominated the relay for five years is well displayed by each team member.

The story follows Rachel, a young girl who is trying to cope with her life after moving and having to deal with her sister, who is annoying. She sees a group of girls on bikes, training for a race. The girls come to her house after one of them gets injured and asks her to join. She decides to join and these girls will do anything to win this year's Rockland Relay - something that they have wanted to win after the same team dominated it for five straight years.

I like how the story portrays the life of a girl that just moved to a new town and is still trying to cope with that. She looks back at the good times she had with her old friends with sadness. I also like how the story has this idea of including others, which we see when the girls that want to win the Rockland Relay go to Rachel's house and invite her to join them. The idea of determination to beat the team that has dominated the event is also something that makes it feel real.

The scene that impressed me the most is when Rachel is trying to cope with the loss of her old friends and having to adapt to a new place and her sister totally denies her idea. I was impressed with the entire conversation and the voice of her sister, which is so realistic for a sibling that is not interested in an activity. The camera shots that impressed me the most were during the very start of the movie when Rachel is looking at her phone and the close-up shots perfectly display her sorrow at having to start over again. The location is in a town in the USA. The sets are realistic. I especially like the basement which perfectly portrays a typical family's old stuff that they do not really use anymore. It is dark which further make it realistic. The set for the racecourse fits the idea of community biking event. The background music at the beginning of the film is lighthearted, which portrays the excitement of a family moving to a new place to live and restart their lives. When the day of the relay comes, there is tense music in the background, which is fits the pressure of the event. The actor that plays Rachel, Andrea Stebbins is quite good. The actors playing the group of girls are also very good.

The message of the film is about the importance of being inclusive with people who are new in the area.

My favorite part of the film is when the girls win the relay, which is something that they have long wanted to do; it also displays that hard work pays off. It's also a great transition from the earlier parts of the film, which is mostly filled with sadness and now there is a lot of positivity.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. I recommend the movie as there is a variety of good lessons that it teaches and it can be perfectly relatable for someone who is going through the same thing in sports or competition in general. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Rockland Relay is a really moving movie! I like the entire process of the main character having to deal with the difficulties of adapting to new surroundings. A good example of this is when she is sitting in the trailer and looking through the images of her old friends and with a reflectively sad face. I also like the sibling relationship, which is well portrayed when she asks her older sister to borrow her bike after knowing the bike relay race that she learned about. Her sister has conditions - a month of chores. The entire idea of teamwork is well portrayed and the disappointment and frustration of losing to the same team that dominated the relay for five years is well displayed by each team member.

The story follows Rachel, a young girl who is trying to cope with her life after moving and having to deal with her sister, who is annoying. She sees a group of girls on bikes, training for a race. The girls come to her house after one of them gets injured and asks her to join. She decides to join and these girls will do anything to win this year's Rockland Relay - something that they have wanted to win after the same team dominated it for five straight years.

I like how the story portrays the life of a girl that just moved to a new town and is still trying to cope with that. She looks back at the good times she had with her old friends with sadness. I also like how the story has this idea of including others, which we see when the girls that want to win the Rockland Relay go to Rachel's house and invite her to join them. The idea of determination to beat the team that has dominated the event is also something that makes it feel real.

The scene that impressed me the most is when Rachel is trying to cope with the loss of her old friends and having to adapt to a new place and her sister totally denies her idea. I was impressed with the entire conversation and the voice of her sister, which is so realistic for a sibling that is not interested in an activity. The camera shots that impressed me the most were during the very start of the movie when Rachel is looking at her phone and the close-up shots perfectly display her sorrow at having to start over again. The location is in a town in the USA. The sets are realistic. I especially like the basement which perfectly portrays a typical family's old stuff that they do not really use anymore. It is dark which further make it realistic. The set for the racecourse fits the idea of community biking event. The background music at the beginning of the film is lighthearted, which portrays the excitement of a family moving to a new place to live and restart their lives. When the day of the relay comes, there is tense music in the background, which is fits the pressure of the event. The actor that plays Rachel, Andrea Stebbins is quite good. The actors playing the group of girls are also very good.

The message of the film is about the importance of being inclusive with people who are new in the area.

My favorite part of the film is when the girls win the relay, which is something that they have long wanted to do; it also displays that hard work pays off. It's also a great transition from the earlier parts of the film, which is mostly filled with sadness and now there is a lot of positivity.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. I recommend the movie as there is a variety of good lessons that it teaches and it can be perfectly relatable for someone who is going through the same thing in sports or competition in general. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 15 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
FISH AND PUDDLE
FISH AND PUDDLE - ALI BARATI
Series: FEATURE, AGES 6-18
Description - Ali Yazdani, a 12-year-old teenager, a genius and simultaneously naughty boy with full of mistakes, was born in a poor family. Due to his many mistakes and disruption of school order, he has expelled from the best school in the city. At the age of 18, Ali goes to an elite science camp. He gets arrested by mistake and is deported. He realizes that he lost his place among the elites and in order to prove himself, he builds a Gyroplane in an abandoned silo. He feels that no one appreciates him and decides to continue his education in the United States. Ali finally realizes his mistakes and gradually puts aside his pride, recovers himself, and succeeds in completing and flying his gyroplane.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Fish and Puddle is a powerful and motivating movie! The idea of a kid that never gives up on his dream despite being hit with crippling obstacles is very apropos for a youth audience. I like seeing his perseverance.

The story follows Ali Yazavani, a 12-year-old self-made inventor and a troublemaker, who has multiple troubles at school that cause him to get expelled, have a run-in with the law and issues with his classmates. He then gets an opportunity to go to a science camp with team of elites, but one simple error derails his dream. He loses everything after the second time he gets into trouble and has to prove to himself that he still has a place with the elites.

I like the story development; it follows this kid, who is a troubled inventor in-the-making. He has ideas after ideas and he will go extreme length to design blueprints for them, even at the cost of running into serious trouble. The story portrays the life of an inventor perfectly as it displays the tiring path the boy has to go through, the amount of disapproval of his ideas and the troubles he has to face. The sets show us that Ali's family is poor. I like the scene where Ali tries to redeem himself by creating a gyroplane and everyone works hard on it, showing how teamwork gets things done. The scene that impressed me most is when Ali goes to extreme lengths to get attention as he is jealous of a girl who usually gets all the attention. It shows his fierce determination to make sure he gets attention. He decides to use his newly built transmitter and put it up on the tower (something extremely dangerous) because he wants the attention and wants his invention to be noticed. Another scene that impressed me is when Ali, now 18 years old, is still following his dream of becoming an inventor. The camera work that impressed me the most are the close-ups that show Ali dealing with the aftermath of bad things he has done. This film takes place in Iran and we see Ali at school, home, the garden and his shop. His home seems to be a typical home in a village that would belong to a relatively poor family. Also of note are seeing how bikes are the widely used transportation. The background music is very suitable and supports the hopes of 12-year-old Ali when he has a variety of ideas to improve peoples' lives. When Ali leaves, the music supports the sadness that his mother has seeing him leave. The final piece that plays when the project is complete is sentimental music, which fits Ali perfectly. The actors all give professional performances. The actor that plays Ali (no name) perfectly portrays a typical teenager, someone that can be a troublemaker but also a hard worker. My favorite part is seeing Ali keep on pursuing his route of being an inventor. He decides to peruse his inventing idea despite the obstacles and frustrations he endures.

The message of this film is to follow your dreams, even if they are met with disapproval by people around you. Hardships you have will pay dividends later on. You should know that there are some moderate degrees of bullying in the film.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18, plus adults. It teaches a good moral lesson about not giving up on your dreams, despite massive disapprovals and sacrifices. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Fish and Puddle is a powerful and motivating movie! The idea of a kid that never gives up on his dream despite being hit with crippling obstacles is very apropos for a youth audience. I like seeing his perseverance.

The story follows Ali Yazavani, a 12-year-old self-made inventor and a troublemaker, who has multiple troubles at school that cause him to get expelled, have a run-in with the law and issues with his classmates. He then gets an opportunity to go to a science camp with team of elites, but one simple error derails his dream. He loses everything after the second time he gets into trouble and has to prove to himself that he still has a place with the elites.

I like the story development; it follows this kid, who is a troubled inventor in-the-making. He has ideas after ideas and he will go extreme length to design blueprints for them, even at the cost of running into serious trouble. The story portrays the life of an inventor perfectly as it displays the tiring path the boy has to go through, the amount of disapproval of his ideas and the troubles he has to face. The sets show us that Ali's family is poor. I like the scene where Ali tries to redeem himself by creating a gyroplane and everyone works hard on it, showing how teamwork gets things done. The scene that impressed me most is when Ali goes to extreme lengths to get attention as he is jealous of a girl who usually gets all the attention. It shows his fierce determination to make sure he gets attention. He decides to use his newly built transmitter and put it up on the tower (something extremely dangerous) because he wants the attention and wants his invention to be noticed. Another scene that impressed me is when Ali, now 18 years old, is still following his dream of becoming an inventor. The camera work that impressed me the most are the close-ups that show Ali dealing with the aftermath of bad things he has done. This film takes place in Iran and we see Ali at school, home, the garden and his shop. His home seems to be a typical home in a village that would belong to a relatively poor family. Also of note are seeing how bikes are the widely used transportation. The background music is very suitable and supports the hopes of 12-year-old Ali when he has a variety of ideas to improve peoples' lives. When Ali leaves, the music supports the sadness that his mother has seeing him leave. The final piece that plays when the project is complete is sentimental music, which fits Ali perfectly. The actors all give professional performances. The actor that plays Ali (no name) perfectly portrays a typical teenager, someone that can be a troublemaker but also a hard worker. My favorite part is seeing Ali keep on pursuing his route of being an inventor. He decides to peruse his inventing idea despite the obstacles and frustrations he endures.

The message of this film is to follow your dreams, even if they are met with disapproval by people around you. Hardships you have will pay dividends later on. You should know that there are some moderate degrees of bullying in the film.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18, plus adults. It teaches a good moral lesson about not giving up on your dreams, despite massive disapprovals and sacrifices. Reviewed by Tom W., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 77 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 6-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
1 4 3
1 4 3 - ANDY ZAMENES
Series: SHORTS, AGES 3-10
Description - The official music video for 1 4 3, a song about sharing the gift of love, just because you have it to give was inspired by Fred Rogers' interpretation of the number 143 as in "I Love You."
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - How can you not like a music video dedicated to saying, "I love you!?" Mr. Zamenes performs this with great zeal that is sure to leave you smiling afterwards.

This short music video, based on the numbers 1 4 3, which Mr. Rogers interpreted as the numbers that represent the term, I love you, is interpreted again by the talented Andy Zamenes.

The song here is simple; simple enough that audiences of preschoolers will easily pick up the words and be able to repeat them after a single viewing. The visuals are all fantasy - stars, flowers and rainbows, music instruments and puffy white clouds - that seem to burst from Andy's magical hands. His on-camera personality is kind and giving and makes you want to believe that he really does love you, loves me. And I think I can sing this song to others and let them know I love them too.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 9, plus adults. (Come on now, let's sing along mom and dad). This would be a great opener at a kids' film festival, or closer, or play it in the middle and get everybody to stand up and sing. Reviewed by Juror #5.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - How can you not like a music video dedicated to saying, "I love you!?" Mr. Zamenes performs this with great zeal that is sure to leave you smiling afterwards.

This short music video, based on the numbers 1 4 3, which Mr. Rogers interpreted as the numbers that represent the term, I love you, is interpreted again by the talented Andy Zamenes.

The song here is simple; simple enough that audiences of preschoolers will easily pick up the words and be able to repeat them after a single viewing. The visuals are all fantasy - stars, flowers and rainbows, music instruments and puffy white clouds - that seem to burst from Andy's magical hands. His on-camera personality is kind and giving and makes you want to believe that he really does love you, loves me. And I think I can sing this song to others and let them know I love them too.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 9, plus adults. (Come on now, let's sing along mom and dad). This would be a great opener at a kids' film festival, or closer, or play it in the middle and get everybody to stand up and sing. Reviewed by Juror #5.
Runtime: 3 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-10 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
DOUBLE LIFE OF HUGH, THE
DOUBLE LIFE OF HUGH, THE - BEN TOBIN
Series: SHORTS, AGES 6-10
Description - Hugh (Nate Ruth) and his father Hugo (Colin Allen) have very different ideas about what it means to be a mime.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I enjoyed this short film about a boy and his father who learn to accept each other on their own terms. The characters cleverly use mime rather than dialogue to tell their story in The Double Life of Hugh. I could relate to seeing the father and son with their different personalities and wanting to do things differently.

The storyline follows Hugh, a young mime who has his own ideas about how he wants to perform. He struggles with understanding what it means to be normal and in getting his dad's approval on his performance ideas. The storyline has a conflict that teens can relate to. Hugh and his father have different ideas about performing; Hugh is trying to find his own identity as a mime. This is something that many teens experience in their own lives - when they and their parents disagree about how things should be done. The various camera angles help give us insight into the characters, such as when we see the boy looking into the mirror or reading a book. Another shot, from above, shows the father's anguish when his son runs away and he is alone, grieving. Some shots, such as those onstage are a bit dark and not well lit. The mine's costume is a traditional one and works well. The outfits he changes to for normal street-ware work well. I particularly enjoyed Hugh's new mime costume at the end because it follows his own style, yet still fits a mime. The main location is a stage. It has a simple background that is appropriate for the performance. The location of the small town gives us a sense of where he lives. I like how the music changes to fit the mood of the characters. It is upbeat in the happier scenes and more dramatic when they are arguing. My favorite part is the performances. All of the actors - Ben Tobin as Hugo's Father, Nate Ruth as Hugh and Colin Allen as Hugo - deliver admirable performances. My favorite scene is when Hugh decides to return and join his father again. The father is glad to welcome his son come back and accepts his new costume and his new ideas. They also cleverly make use of the written word occasionally, to show the passage of time, which is similar to how silent movies were made and applicable to this non-narrative film. I love the ending, when the boy returns and the two of them make up! It shows that, in the end, we can all accept changes from the younger generation.

The message is about accepting others for who they are. The father wants the boy to perform his way; Hugh wants to perform in his own style. In the end the boy wants to continue to perform with his father and the father accepts the boy's way of performing so they can continue to perform together.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 14. Reviewed by Carlee S. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I enjoyed this short film about a boy and his father who learn to accept each other on their own terms. The characters cleverly use mime rather than dialogue to tell their story in The Double Life of Hugh. I could relate to seeing the father and son with their different personalities and wanting to do things differently.

The storyline follows Hugh, a young mime who has his own ideas about how he wants to perform. He struggles with understanding what it means to be normal and in getting his dad's approval on his performance ideas. The storyline has a conflict that teens can relate to. Hugh and his father have different ideas about performing; Hugh is trying to find his own identity as a mime. This is something that many teens experience in their own lives - when they and their parents disagree about how things should be done. The various camera angles help give us insight into the characters, such as when we see the boy looking into the mirror or reading a book. Another shot, from above, shows the father's anguish when his son runs away and he is alone, grieving. Some shots, such as those onstage are a bit dark and not well lit. The mine's costume is a traditional one and works well. The outfits he changes to for normal street-ware work well. I particularly enjoyed Hugh's new mime costume at the end because it follows his own style, yet still fits a mime. The main location is a stage. It has a simple background that is appropriate for the performance. The location of the small town gives us a sense of where he lives. I like how the music changes to fit the mood of the characters. It is upbeat in the happier scenes and more dramatic when they are arguing. My favorite part is the performances. All of the actors - Ben Tobin as Hugo's Father, Nate Ruth as Hugh and Colin Allen as Hugo - deliver admirable performances. My favorite scene is when Hugh decides to return and join his father again. The father is glad to welcome his son come back and accepts his new costume and his new ideas. They also cleverly make use of the written word occasionally, to show the passage of time, which is similar to how silent movies were made and applicable to this non-narrative film. I love the ending, when the boy returns and the two of them make up! It shows that, in the end, we can all accept changes from the younger generation.

The message is about accepting others for who they are. The father wants the boy to perform his way; Hugh wants to perform in his own style. In the end the boy wants to continue to perform with his father and the father accepts the boy's way of performing so they can continue to perform together.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 14. Reviewed by Carlee S. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
Juror Recommended Age: 6-10 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media:



This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
MAMA CANADA: OUTER SPACE
MAMA CANADA: OUTER SPACE - MILA SHUMILINA
Series: EPISODICS, AGED 3-7
Description - Mama Canada is a new TV puppet show intended for the pre-school children (2-6 years old). Each episode tells a story about an important and interesting fact about Canadian history, geography, science, culture, sport, celebrations and traditions. In this episode the main characters: Nastya, Alex, Professor and Parsley are going to find out some fascinating facts about Space and the Universe.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Mama Canada: Outer Space is definitely unique. I like the use of puppets as characters. It certainly holds some appeal but also can be hard to understand at points.

This Canadian made show is part of a series; it teaches us about the solar system and the planets within it. The key characters are the professor, the kids Nastya and Alex, and a plant named Parsley that tries to help but doesn't always succeed.

The storyline is filled with facts about science, astronomy, and more. The show takes place in a scientist's lab, which has lots of cool details in the background. The camera angles are the pretty much the same throughout the show, although there is one cool angle when they look though the telescope and see the planets. The background sounds are rather other worldly and fit the show. There are no visual effects except when they shape the screen to a circle for the telescope. The director is Sofia Bobriseva; the writer and producer is Maksim Kravshinskii; the voice-over actors are not credited. The kids were very hard to understand as their voices were rather squeaky. The professor is a really fun character; he is nice and helps people learn more about the topic.

The message of this episode is that there is much more out in the universe to explore. Apparently each episode has a different theme. This one is about outer space.

I give this one 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 8, plus adults. Reviewed by Avalon N., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Mama Canada: Outer Space is definitely unique. I like the use of puppets as characters. It certainly holds some appeal but also can be hard to understand at points.

This Canadian made show is part of a series; it teaches us about the solar system and the planets within it. The key characters are the professor, the kids Nastya and Alex, and a plant named Parsley that tries to help but doesn't always succeed.

The storyline is filled with facts about science, astronomy, and more. The show takes place in a scientist's lab, which has lots of cool details in the background. The camera angles are the pretty much the same throughout the show, although there is one cool angle when they look though the telescope and see the planets. The background sounds are rather other worldly and fit the show. There are no visual effects except when they shape the screen to a circle for the telescope. The director is Sofia Bobriseva; the writer and producer is Maksim Kravshinskii; the voice-over actors are not credited. The kids were very hard to understand as their voices were rather squeaky. The professor is a really fun character; he is nice and helps people learn more about the topic.

The message of this episode is that there is much more out in the universe to explore. Apparently each episode has a different theme. This one is about outer space.

I give this one 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 8, plus adults. Reviewed by Avalon N., KIDS FIRST!
Runtime: 8 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-7 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO



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