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Bindi Irwin Returns to Nim’s Island on the Hallmark Channel on March 15

Monday, March 11th, 2013

ReturnNimsIsland.jpgReturn To Nim’s Island, a Hallmark Channel Original Movie, premieres on the Hallmark Channel on Friday, March 15, 2013. Following up on the success of Nim’s Island, this sequel  is a great platform for Bindi Irwin, through her portrayal of Nim, to introduce young people to the importance of protecting our earth and its fragile species.

According to Brianna Hope Beaton KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Nim teaches us “that you should do everything you can to help the marine and wildlife.” New KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Cassandra Hsiao, “Return to Nim’s Island will take families on a spectacular expedition underwater, into dark mysterious caves, and up awfully steep cliffs.” And new KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Jailene Arias agrees with the others that the main message in the film is “don’t give up!”

Check out these great video reviews from two of our new KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, Cassandra Hsiao and Jailene Arias!

Return to Nim’s Island

Reviewed by Brianna Hope Beaton

Click here to see Brianna’s full video review!

This film has lots of action, very funny and is definitely great for the whole family to see.

Let’s return to Nim’s Island to see how things are going with Nim (Bindi Irwin) and her Father (Matthew Lillard). One day they get a message that some people will be buying the island to build an attraction there, but Nim will not stand for it and comes up with some things to do to save what she calls home. She will do almost anything to protect the island and the animals that she loves so well. Everything is going fine until Edmund, (Toby Wallace), comes along to help but brings trouble. Will Nim get to keep and stay living at her personal resort or will she have to pack up and leave?

I really love this film. It’s the sequel to Nim’s Island. I love the underwater shoots and the humor. The cast does an incredible job in interacting with the animals and making it all believable. My favorite character is Nim because she is not afraid to speak her mind, and will not let anyone push her around. My favorite scene is when Nim is going on the zip line. It looks really cool to ride and I would love to do it. I love the music as it fits in perfectly with the scenes.

Brendan Maher directs Nim’s Island. Author of the Nim’s Island series, Wendy Orr, is the inspiration behind this film. Everyone does an amazing job – from the animals to all the cast – it makes an impact with an environmental message. The big message is that you should do everything you can to help the marine and wildlife, if you cannot, please do not harm it. Additionally, it emphasizes the idea to “never give up on what you want to do.”

I recommend, Return to Nim’s Island for ages 7 to 14. Parents will enjoy it as much as their kids. If you love the wild you will love this film.

I give this film an overwhelming 5 out of 5 stars. I love the adventure, cinematography, action and, of course, the humor.

Tune in to see the Return to Nim’s Island on March 15 on the Hallmark Channel 8pm EST / 7PM CT.

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‘Life of Pi’ A Great Story of Hope And Determination Now on DVD/Blu-ray

Monday, March 11th, 2013

LifeofPi.jpgLife of Pi received rave reviews in the theaters, nothing new for the multiple award-winning director Ang Lee, but part of the credit goes to advances in technology that enable the film’s special effects.

According to KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Brianna Hope Beaton, age 13, “The visual effects are amazing.” KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Cheyenne Nguyen, age 9, says “The special effect of the tiger is the best part. It seems so real, I thought that the tiger is actually in the boat with Pi.” Click here to see Brianna and Cheyenne’s video review!

Experience the thrill and beauty of Life of Pi all over again! Now available on DVD and Blu-ray. Enter our KIDS FIRST! Critics Go Local Campaign, by submitting your review of Life of Pi and win free movie tickets or a free skin for your favorite mobile device. Go here for details.

Life of Pi

Reviewed by Brianna Hope Beaton

This is truly an amazing story, with a great adventure that is hard to believe.

Pi (Suraj Sharma), an Indian boy, is on a ship with his family who is moving to Canada. One night, there is a terrible storm that sinks the ship and only Pi, a hyena, zebra, orangutan and a Bengal tiger whose name is Richard Parker survive. They are all in one of the small lifeboats trying to stay alive. After a while, it becomes only Pi and Richard Parker who are adrift in the Pacific Ocean. Pi is now trying to survive, but is in fear of Richard Parker.

Based on the best-selling novel by Yann Martel, this adventure is created in 3-D and is one of my new favorites. The visual effects are amazing and capture the marine life really well, with all its beautiful colors. I like the way this film is set up like someone is telling it as a story; this really keeps my attention. One of my favorite scenes is when a big whale comes out of the ocean; it is so big and pretty to see. It is incredible. I also like the way we learn how the tiger is named Richard Parker. It is somewhat funny and unusual.

I would love to know how director Ang Lee directs all the animals in this film; it is truly amazing how they act. David Magee (screenplay writer) does a remarkable job transforming a great novel into an amazing script. Other members of the cast in Life of Pi include Vibish Sivakumar (Ravi Patel) and Rafe Spall (The Writer).

A big message I found is to never lose hope no matter where you are in life. Pi is in the middle of the ocean for many, many days with a big storm and a tiger, but through it all he never loses hope to be rescued.

I recommend this film for ages 8 to adults. Younger ages may be a little frightened when they see some of the animal scenes, but other than that, this is a must-see. You can enjoy it with your family and friends.

I give Life of Pi five out of five stars. I love the message and the visual effects. This is a great story of hope and determination. Believe the unbelievable and see the amazing adventure in Life of Pi.

Life of Pi

Reviewed by Cheyenne Nguyen

Life of Pi is the most amazing 3-D-quality movie that shows underwater footage and sea life.

Life of Pi is based on a popular novel by Yann Martel that sold over 7 million copies. It’s about a boy name Piscine Patel, known as Pi (Suraj Sharma). He has a good life growing up in his father’s zoo in Pondicherry, a French colony. Due to hard times, they have to close down the zoo and move some of the animals to Canada with them.

The move to Canada is in a big Japanese cargo ship, and all the animals are at the bottom of the ship. The big storm hits the ship and sinks the ship. The survivors are Pi, the tiger (Richard Parker), zebra, hyena, orangutan and a rat. They are all in a small lifeboat from the cargo ship. After several days, the only two survivors are Pi and Richard Parker. They are afraid of each other but need each other to survive.

There are so many scenes with great cinematography. The most memorable ones are the underwater footage, and the sinking of the cargo ship is so real and clear. The 3-D brings out the glowing of the jelly fish and the blue whale vividly.

The special effect of the tiger is the best part. It seems so real, I thought that the tiger is actually in the boat with Pi.

The part I did not like is when the animals are fighting each other. It’s too hard to watch the survival of the fittest.

The acting in this movie is so great. Suraj shows a lot of emotions with his eyes, and he stays in his character, and the audience can feel his emotions. It’s so amazing to see his weight loss as the days go by at sea.

My favorite character is Richard Parker. He helps Pi survive the shipwreck and at times he seems more human than creature.

The lesson in this movie is anything is possible. Pi survives over seven months in the Pacific Ocean with just faith and Richard Parker.

I rank this movie four out of five stars. I give this movie an age range of 8 and up.

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View, Review and Get Rewards!

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Amazon_film_critic_banner.jpgKIDS FIRST! wants to hear from you!

Does your child love movies and love to talk about them? Do you love free stuff?

In our KIDS FIRST! Critics Go Local campaign, your child can be a film critic too. Send us your child’s video review of Chasing Mavericks, Life of Pi or Scooby-Doo! Mask of the Blue Falcon and you will receive free movie tickets or a free skin for your favorite mobile device from Zing Revolution (while supplies last) – just for sending us your review!

Chasing Mavericks and Scooby-Doo! Mask of the Blue Falcon are out on DVD and Blu-ray on February 26, 2013 and Life of Pi is available on DVD, Blu-ray, HD and 3D on March 12, 2013. You can purchase any of these movies on Amazon.com, or at your favorite retailer.

Click here to visit our KIDS FIRST! Critics Go Local website and see the details and instructions for participating. We can’t wait to hear from you!

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Introducing The New Faces of KIDS FIRST!

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

Amazon_film_critic_banner.jpgKIDS FIRST! is so excited to announce our new KIDS FIRST! Film Critics for 2013! This group of 12 kids did such a wonderful job on their video review, written review and have already been fun to work with.

Drumroll please, in first name order, the moment you’ve all been waiting for… (hint, click on any of the winner’s names to see their video entry review):

The finalists that did not make the final 12 should be congratulated as well. The judges had a very hard time making this decision as every child that entered worked hard and showed that they had the potential to be great film critics. We encourage you to enter again when the contest is re-opened. With the experience and practice you have, your chances will be even greater next time.

KIDS FIRST! is very proud that many of our 2012 Film Critics will be continuing on with us. We welcome back: Raven Devanney, Morgan Bertsch, Cheyenne Nguyen, Camille Bajema, Anthony Aranda, Julianna Noone and Brianna Beaton. They will all continue to do reviews and work on the KIDS FIRST! Coming Attractions radio show, and will also serve as advisors and mentors for our new critics.

It’s going to be a great year at KIDS FIRST!

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Announcing our 2013 KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Finalists!

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Amazon_film_critic_banner.jpgWe Proudly Announce Our Finalists for the 2013 KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Search. Twelve of these young people will become the face and voice of KIDS FIRST! for the next year. They will be doing video reviews, hosting our Voice America Kids radio show, KIDS FIRST! Coming Attractions, attend pre-screenings, red carpet events and more.

The film critics program helps to support our mission of media literacy, proving that SMART KIDS MAKE SMART CONSUMERS. In order to keep our program alive, and make sure that these opportunities are open to all kids, we need your help. Please make your tax-deductible donation in support of these important programs aimed at kids, by kids. Any amount helps, click here now, or contact us to donate by check.

The 2013 Finalist are (in alphabetical order by first name):

  1. Adam Chernick

  2. Canela Roey

  3. Carson Boman

  4. Casey Holmes

  5. Cassandra Hsiao

  6. Charlee Boman

  7. Colin Davies

  8. Cordelia Holland Foist

  9. Gerry Orz

  10. Jaheem Toombs

  11. Jailene Arias

  12. Johntae Lipscomb

  13. Keefer C. Blakeslee

  14. Molly Jackson

  15. Morgaine Sapphire Hunter

  16. Patrick Nguyen

  17. Stacy-Love Belizaire

  18. Talin Polka

  19. Valdi-Agaelle Belizaire

To see the finalists entry videos, click here! Pick your favorites and check back on the KIDS FIRST! website on or around January 31 to see if who won!

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