Up to date information about children's entertainment – film, TV, DVD and more…. from founder and president of KIDS FIRST! Ranny Levy

Archive for August, 2011

Gleeks Rejoice! It’s Here and It’s Fun.

Thursday, August 11th, 2011

Glee.3DMovie.jpgAre you a Gleek? Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is here. I like this movie. Even if you are not familiar with Glee, you will enjoy this movie if you are into musicals or singing and dancing. The movie is a vivacious documentary recounting life-changing experiences from Gleeks combined with Glee cast performances. 
Watching the entire cast of Glee perform is very entertaining and the 3D effect makes the movie so vivid and life-like. I felt like I was there enjoying the concert! The movie is very high-spirited and gives off good vibes and delivers positive messages such as have self-confidence and it is okay to be different. I like how the movie goes behind the scenes of the Glee cast because Gleeks and the rest of the audience can identify themselves with the various personalities of the characters. The movie has several scenes where Gleeks are interviewed about who their favorite character is or tell experiences about how relating to a certain character on the show helped them pull through a tough time.
I recommend this movie to children 7 and up. It does not have inappropriate language, sexual scenes, and is not complicated or difficult to understand for children since there is not much of a storyline. The movie is also rated PG. Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is a fun movie pick to see with friends, but is also an engaging family film connecting both parents and kids through music. The wait is finally over! This movie will be coming out in theaters August 12, 2011.
Credit: Gabriella Chu, age 14, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic

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Mars Needs Moms – Fave of Our Youth Film Critics

Sunday, August 7th, 2011

Mars_Needs_Moms_3D.jpgWe all know how well Mars Needs Moms did at the box office. Sometimes, I think you really need to send in a kid to do a kids’ job – that is to review a movie made for kids. Adults just don’t get it. Here are video reviews by 2 of our 8 -year-old youth film critics and, believe me, they loved it! The DVD comes out this week so don’t pass it by, give it the good old family try.”This movie is out of this world literally, because it takes place on Mars, A.K.A The Red Planet. The movie is about a little boy namedMilovoiced by Seth Dusky, who says some pretty mean things to his mom. Before he has a chance to apologize, she is Martian-napped and taken to Mars. He has 6.93 earth hours until sun rise to save her. Does he make it in time!

My favorite part is when Gribble, voiced by Dan Fogler, savesMilo’s mom with the helmet that was meant for his mom. I thought that was very thoughtful. My favorite characters are Gribble, because he’s just simply Gribbletastic. Ki, because she helpsMilo, and she does something that no other Martain has ever done. She stands up to the supervisor. Head of all Martians,Milo, because he realizes that he needs his mom and is determined to do whatever he needs to save her.

I rate this movie 4 out of 5 stars because the Martains are a little scary, especially the supervisor. So for this reason I recommend this movie to kids ages 7 and up.” Reviewed by Ny’Asia Bell, age 8, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic

“I just finished watching an excellent movie called “Mars Needs Moms.” The movie is about a  oy namedMilowho goes on a big adventure to help save his mom from aliens. The aliens that live on Mars are not very good mothers so they look to Earth to find good mothers to steal.

My favorite characters are Milo,Milo’s mom, and Gribble.  I liked Gribble because he helped Milo get his mother back and he helpsMiloto see how important his mother truly is. My favorite part of the movie is whenMilohas to save his new friend Gribble from the aliens. Gribble gets captured and the aliens are going to shoot him.Miloswings in to save the day and it is awesome.

This movie does have some characters that are bad and try to stopMilofrom saving his mom. The aliens in the uniforms are bad because they listen to the Supervisor. The Supervisor controls everyone and wants everyone to do what she says.

I would recommend this movie for ages three and up. I think depending on what age you are is how you will see this movie. For example, my brother is 5 and he didn’t think the movie was scary at all. I am 8 and I found the movie to be a little scary because it made me think about how sad I would be if I lost my own mother. But don’t worry everything turns out ok in the end! Go out and buy this movie when it comes out on Disney DVD and Blu Ray.

Reviewed by Anthony Aranda, age 8, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic

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Our Youth Film Critics Loved Family Movie Night’s “Who is Simon Miller” Aug 6 at 8E/7C

Thursday, August 4th, 2011

WISM_950x422.jpgWho is Simon Miller is the latest release from WalMart / P&G’s Family Movie Night offerings and, it’s truly one of their best to date. Three of our youth film critics reviewed it and all, from 8-year-old Anthony to 14-year-olds Gabriella and Raven had great things to say about it. Here are some of their comments:

This made-for-TV movie is a super entertaining edge-of-your-seat movie. From the very first scene, it grabs you and you are hooked for the whole film. I really enjoyed this film. My favorite character is Sarah, played by Skyler Day, because she is very helpful in the mission to find her father and her acting is very convincing. The cinematography is great; the color is dark and the lighting makes the scenes gloomy.  That really helps build suspense in the film. The background music works well; it has a “spy” feel to it and generates the right  mood. I think that by the way the movie ends that we might expect a sequel. (Raven Devanney, age 14)

Are you into action and adventure? If so, then Who is Simon Miller? is a movie for you. It tells the story of the Miller family’s frantic search in finding out who their father, Simon, really is. After discovering their father’s secret office containing multiple passports of him with different names, they become suspicious. They decide to embark on an international trip in search of their father. I enjoy watching the family travel to places such as Paris, Geneva and other cities in Europe. I also like the theme of the movie. The Miller family constantly tries to stick together, despite all of the obstacles they encounter. They will even risk their lives for one another. However, some parts of the movie did not quite make sense to me. For example, the clues the family follows to find Simon. (Gabriella Chu, age 14)

I just got finished watching an excellent movie called “Who is Simon Miller.” The movie is about a family who doesn’t know as much about each other as they think.My favorite characters are Sarah and Kevin. I liked the kids the best in the movie because they were very smart and solved most of the puzzles in order to help find their dad. I would hope that if I was looking for my mom or dad that I could be as smart as they were. My favorite part of the movie is when the family found their dad. That is my favorite part because they spent a lot of time trying to find him and were so happy to find him. (Anthony Aranda, age 8)

We recommend this movie for ages 12 and up due to some violence plus a complicated storyline and scenes of teens traveling on their own to foreign contries.

See this movie on NBC on Saturday, August 6th at 8/7 central.  

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KIDS FIRST! Interviews Drew Koles from the Made for TV Movie, Who is Simon Miller – On Voice America Kids August 2!

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011

WISM_950x422_1.jpgThis summer has been such fun! After spending a week with 15 kids at KIDS FIRST! Boot Camp, we are now prepping to launch KIDS FIRST! Coming Attractions – a weekly radio show hosted by six KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, ages 8 to 14 – Ny’asia Bell, Anthony Aranda, Sam Connan, Gabriella Chu, Raven Devanney and Makai Weber Colvin.  If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know that these six critics won a spot as a KIDS FIRST! Film Critic through our national competition last year.Anthony.jpg

Since January, they have been reviewing new films and DVDs, attending Red Carpet events and premieres and interviewing talent on and off the Red Carpet. On KIDS FIRST! Coming Attractions, our youth film critics will be reviewing the latest film and DVD releases, interviewing talent and other guests and sharing their experiences as a KIDS FIRST! Film Critic.

Bookmark Voice America Kids now! http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/1950/kids-first-coming-attractions

Next Tuesday, Raven Devanney and Anthony Arranda will be reviewing the films, Mars Needa Moms and Winnie RavenAM.jpgthe Pooh which they just viewed while attending the Red Carpet premiere at our KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Boot Camp on the Disney lot in Burbank. AAnd, they will be discussing what other films they saw and people they met while attending Boot Camp.

Also on next week’s show, a review of Who is Simon Miller, the new made-for-TV movie from P&G/Walmart and an interview with one of its stars, Drew Koles who plays the role of Kevin Miller. The movie will be broadcast on Saturday, August 6 at 8E/5 C on NBC. 

Synopsis: When unassuming geologist Simon Miller (Loren Dean) mysteriously disappears one night, the Miller family is thrown into a desperate search to find him. Simons wife Meredith (Robyn Lively) and their two kids, Sarah, 18, and Kevin, 15, frantically search Simons office for information. When they find a stash of passports, all with Simons picture but each with a different alias, they realize that their father has been keeping more than a few secrets. Who is Simon Miller? And what has he gotten himself and now his family into? Not sure they can even trust the dad they thought they knew, the Millers embark on an international mission to get him back. Its a heart- pounding adventure that tests the limits to which families will fight for each other.


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PBS Announces New Series Inspired By Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood CHARACTER Daniel Tiger

Monday, August 1st, 2011

DanielTiger.JPGDANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD brings together a group of today’s leading creators of children’s media and educational technology. The series was developed by the acclaimed Fred Rogers Company in association with Out of the Blue Enterprises.We’re very excited to be creating a program that builds on Fred’s legacy in such fresh and innovative ways.  Fred knew that school readiness skills are the foundation for academic achievement, and a full life, and now a growing body of research confirms this,” said Bill Isler, President of The Fred Rogers Company.

Fred Rogers revolutionized children’s media with MISTER ROGERS’ NEIGHBORHOOD, and DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD continues on this path of innovation, helping the next generation of young children learn and grow in new ways,” said Lesli Rotenberg, Senior Vice President, Children’s Media, PBS.  “Joining the PBS KIDS family of series that cover important curricular areas like literacy and science, DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD fills a critical gap in children’s media today: modeling the behaviors and habits that kids need in order to excel in formal learning settings – essentially, learning how to learn.  It’s important for kids to learn pro-social skills like cooperation and listening, so that when they start school they are able to focus on the material at hand.”

The executive producers of DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD are Kevin Morrison, for The Fred Rogers Company, and Angela Santomero, cofounder of Out of the Blue Enterprises and the creative force behind the hit PBS KIDS literacy series SUPER WHY!.  In addition to this key partner, The Fred Rogers Company is joined by 9 Story Entertainment, bringing award-winning animation capabilities to the production, and top game designer Schell Games, which will spearhead the series’ digital educational applications.

DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD joins the PBS KIDS line-up of cross-platform content for kids ages 2 to 8, which includes a host of top-rated series including THE CAT IN THE HAT KNOWS A LOT ABOUT THAT!, CURIOUS GEORGE and WILD KRATTS.  With a transmedia approach, PBS KIDS is increasingly serving children wherever they live, learn, and play – on TV, online, through mobile devices, in the classroom, and through a new line of educational toys.

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