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Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - The prehistoric family the Croods are challenged by a rival family the Bettermans, who claim to be better and more evolved.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Croods: New Age is sensational because of the clever and colorful graphics, funny and realistic conflicts.

The storyline is about the Bettermens not liking the Croods. They must learn how to get along with one another and they have many adventurous life lessons along the way.

I like the story line because it's relatable to real life. The family conflicts and differences make the movie unpredictable. The characters are well developed. The production is state of the art. It is highly colorful and engaging from start to finish. The film is a great follow-up to the first one. My favorite part is when the main characters, Phil Betterment and Grug, are in the Jacuzzi.

The message in the film is that we do not have to look the same and we all have far more in common than we realize. It's okay to look different.

I give The Croods: New Age 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. It releases November 26, 2020

Reviewed by Bailey Rae F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 13-18
Description - Renato, a Mexican aviation exec, is shocked to learn he has an American half-brother he never knew about, the free-spirited Asher. They are forced on a road trip together, tracing the path their father took from Mexico to the US.
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KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Half Brothers is a fun-loving movie with loveable characters which takes you on a wild adventure that will have you laughing. Along the way the characters learn about each other and their father. They also learn a lot about themselves. These two brothers with opposite personalities must unite to uncover the hidden truth of the past.

The story begins with young Renato (Ian Inigo) enjoying time with his dad, Flavio (Juan Pablo Espinosa). Things change when Renato's dad leaves Mexico to go to the U.S. to look for work and does not return. Years later when Renato (Luis Gerardo Mendez) is a grown up, he gets a phone call saying his dad is extremely sick and he needs to come right away. He is torn between wanting to go and staying home to prepare for his wedding. He decides to go and gets the surprise of meeting his half-brother, Asher (Connor Del Rio) who he did not know existed. Their dad sends them on a wild journey to get the answers Renato has wanted to know his whole life - why his dad never came back for him. Along the way, he gets to know his half brother as they go on a hilarious and bonding scavenger hunt across America to get the answers.

My favorite scene is when Asher steals the goat from the barn. It kept me laughing and intrigued. All the actors make this odd situation funny and memorable. I also enjoyed the music selections playing during their road trips. They are catchy, uplifting and always enhance the mood of these scenes. Asher is an easy character to like. He always has a positive attitude and his clothing choices throughout the movie really fit his character.

The messages in this film are about how forgiving can be life changing, that it is okay to be yourself, and accepting others' differences can lead to the best friendships. While forgiveness is not always an easy thing to do, it is better to forgive than to hold onto something that makes you unhappy. Being yourself is important. Just because you are different it does not make you less important. Accepting differences in others can lead to happiness. You should know that there is some explicit language, the use of guns and violence and there is talk about some adult situations.

I give Half Brothers 5 out of 5 stars. It has some amazing messages that are delivered in a very humorous way. I recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults. This film comes out in theaters December 4, 2020.

Reviewed by Carlee S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 13-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGE 5-18
Description - It's been two years since siblings Kate (Darby Camp) and Teddy Pierce (Judah Lewis) saved Christmas, and a lot has changed. Kate, now a cynical teenager, is reluctantly spending Christmas in Cancun with her mom's new boyfriend (Tyrese Gibson) and his son Jack (Jahzir Bruno). Unwilling to accept this new version of her family, Kate decides to run away. But when a mysterious, magical troublemaker named Belsnickel threatens to destroy the North Pole and end Christmas for good, Kate and Jack are unexpectedly pulled into a new adventure with Santa Claus (Kurt Russell). Written and directed by Chris Columbus (Home Alone, Harry Potter) and co-starring Goldie Hawn, THE CHRISTMAS CHRONICLES: PART TWO is an action-packed adventure for the whole family that's full of heart, humor, and holiday spirit.
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KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like The Christmas Chronicles 2 because it is a heartwarming film, full of magic and adventures which makes it so fun to watch. Santa Claus is not the typical Santa we are used to seeing in other movies. This Santa is a type of daredevil Santa.

If you watched The Christmas Chronicles in 2018, you must know that Kate (Darby Camp) and her brother Teddy (Judah Lewis) are friends with Santa Claus, played by the one and only Kurt Russell. Kate's mom and her boyfriend Bob (Tyrese Gibson) take Kate, Teddy and Jack (Jahzir Bruno), Bob's son, to celebrate Christmas in Cancun, Mexico. Kate doesn't want to be there as she misses her dad who passed away two years ago. An evil kid named Belsnickel (Julian Dennison) wants to destroy Santa and uses Kate to get to the North Pole to do his dirty deed. Jack follows her so they both end up at the North Pole and that's when ALL the adventure begins!

My favorite part is when Jack picks two of Mrs. Claus' special homemade cookies - confidence and bomb. When he needs confidence he forgets which one of the cookies is confidence and almost eats the cookie bomb. The graphics and digital effects are amazing. The reindeers and the cougar look real. The music is very appealing in every scene. The costumes are very seasonal. Mrs. Claus (Goldie Hawn) gives this movie a special touch, which makes this film different from the first movie. Mrs. Claus creates Santa's Village and takes good care of it. The movie mentions how it should be called Mrs. Claus Village, which gives this character the importance she deserves because, in reality, she is the person behind Santa, supporting him, taking care of him and his business.

The moral of this movie is to move on, be happy and let others be happy. Throughout the film we learn that Kate doesn't like her mom's new boyfriend and doesn't want Bob substituting for her dad. Santa shows her that family is everything and that they matter the most, so why not cherish that her mom is happy because she found love again in Bob? Kate needs to accept that her mom loves Bob and that doesn't mean she stops loving her dad. She needs to understand her mom deserves to be happy. Life continues; people need to move on.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. The Christmas Chronicles 2 comes out on Netflix on November 25, 2020, so get your hot chocolate and cookies or popcorn ready to enjoy this magical film!

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: TV SERIES, AGES 8 TO 18
Description - They're back! The Warner brothers, Yakko and Wakko, and the Warner sister Dot, have a great time wreaking havoc and mayhem in the lives of everyone they meet. After returning to their beloved home, the Warner Bros. water tower, the siblings waste no time in causing chaos and comic confusion as they run loose through the studio, turning the world into their personal playground. Joining Yakko, Wakko and Dot, fan-favorite characters Pinky and the Brain also return to continue their quest for world domination. Animaniacs is an American animated television series developed by Steven Spielberg for steaming service Hulu. It is a revival of the original 1993 television series of the same name. The new series sees the return of the Warner Brothers, Yakko and Wakko and their sister Dot (voiceovers by Rob Paulsen, Jess Harnell and Tress MacNeille), and of Pinky and the Brain (voiceover by Paulsen and Maurice LaMarche). The first season is set to premiere on Hulu November 20, 2020.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Animaniacs is back giving us tons of entertainment! Don't expect to see reruns with this rebooted animated series. Showrunner Wellesley Wild nails the creation of fresh and relevant content, while keeping the same hilarious craziness of the original series.

The series is about the Warner siblings Wakko, Yakko and Dot who are crazy and wild characters found on the Warner Bros. Studio. The episodes follow them as they get into trouble running around the Warner Bros. Studio lot and while meeting other characters. The new season picks up 22 years later, after they were locked away. Now we get to see their new adventures as they learn more about the current world around them and all the changes that have happened.

Director Steven Spielberg brings back the same characters and many of the original voice actors. The main characters are the Warner brothers and sister - Wakko (Jess Harnell), Yakko (Rob Paulsen) and Dot (Tress MacNeille). The setting for the series is the classic Warner Bros. Studio lot and the lot's water tower. It's hilarious to see the characters run around the lot learning about things that didn't exist two decades ago like tablets, climate change, Ubers, cat-fishing, YouTubers and Amazon drones. Ralph the security guard (Frank Welker) even has new tricks he can use to catch the Warner siblings, such as a net connected to a drone. The show was updated to a wide-screen format and to make it more gender balanced and diverse. In the premiere episode, Dot points out that Warner Bros. now has a Black female CEO. Shorts like The Warner Kids and Pinky and The Brain also return with new content. It's a clever way to see how the other characters are doing after meeting the Warner siblings.

The Warner siblings and the rest of the cast always find a way to have fun in each episode. The message of this series is to find a way to stay fun, positive and happy despite the craziness in the world. I will note that there are some scenes or jokes that viewers may not get unless they followed the original series, but you will still laugh.

Animaniacs is a great mix of kid-friendly education and slapstick comedy, deserving 5 out of 5 stars and a recommendation for ages 5 to 18. Adults are sure to love it too especially if they are fans of the original series. The new season of Animaniacs debuts on Hulu on November 20.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV

BUENOS DIAS! SPANISH LEARNING SONGS - WHISTLEFRITZ LLC Click to purchase directly from the producer
Description - Irresistible salsa, merengue, flamenco, and Andean rhythms introduce kids to the vibrant music, language, and culture of the Spanish-speaking world, as they learn Spanish along the way.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The CD Buenos Dias! Spanish Learning Songs from Whistlefritz gives a terrific sample of traditional musical styles representing Spanish culture. The music ranges from lively salsa rhythms to slower lullabies. Most songs are original, but the songs "Manzanita de Peru," "Arbolito de Peru" and "Duermete Mi Nino/Mi Nina" include traditional lyrics with new music and arrangements. The songs have catchy Spanish lyrics, repetitive sentence frames and English translations included in the liner notes. Word-by-word translation guides are contained on the Whistlefritz website. A couple of the songs describe the weather ("Buenos Dias, Amiguitos") and making introductions ("Como Se Llama La Llama?"). "El Tamal No Esta Mal" portrays a picky eater whom others entice with different foods. "Hagamos Musica" and "Sonidos del Flamenco" describe traditional Spanish instruments such as the guitar and castanets and their sounds. Listeners can sing about the fun eggshell tradition in "Cascarones." "Se Habla Espanol" lists countries where Spanish is spoken. "Mi Osito" would appeal to younger children as the speaker searches for a lost teddy bear. There are songs for Valentine's Day and Mother's Day. The artists Jorge Anaya, Ileana Perez and Didier Prossaird perform the songs expertly with pleasant voices matching the mood and humor of the songs. All in all the 15 tracks offer the listener exposure to different Spanish musical styles, traditions and language. I give this CD 4 out of 5 stars and recommended it for ages 5 to 9. Reviewed by Christine R., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like Buenos D�as: Spanish Learning Songs CD because it is very pleasant and electrifying to listen to. It has kid-friendly songs that make it easy to learn Spanish at the same time you are dancing to the songs.

This CD has 15 songs and is about 40 minutes of fun. The singers are award-winning soprano Ileana P�rez and Jorge Anaya, who is a songwriter too. Didier Prossaird is in charge of the fantastic music. The CD includes each song's lyrics and its translation in English as well as a tool to help the listeners learn Spanish. This CD helps the children to learn how to count, how to say words in Spanish, how to be nice to others and teaches about things like costumes or typical traditions related to Spanish language countries.

My favorite songs are number two, "Como se Llama la Llama?" (What's the Lama's Name?), because it is so catchy and fun to listen to. I also like number four, "Sonidos del Flamenco" (Sounds of Flamenco) because it is so peaceful and soothing. I even picked up some words that I didn't know. This CD can be a very productive tool to teach Spanish in preschool or elementary classrooms.

This CD's songs transports you to different countries, teaches you about different cultures and offers different types of musical rhythms to dance to. If you have Hispanic roots, it makes you feel proud of where your parents or ancestors come from and helps you to appreciate your background.

I give Buenos Dias Spanish Learning Songs 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 12. This CD is out now and it can be a very useful Christmas gift. So go get it pronto!

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Buenos Dias! Spanish Learning Songs is the perfect album to teach young kids the Spanish language! Each song is fun and has a great beat to keep kids entertained while learning. The songs are also extremely catchy.

This CD is aimed for preschool and early elementary children to learn how to speak Spanish. Whistlefritz, the CD's producer is known for their work in teaching languages through music. It's comforting to know you will be taught how to speak the language the correct and proper way. The artists and singers, Jorge Anaya, Ileana Perez and Didier Prossaird sing the various songs on the CD. Each song is short, around one to two minutes long. The lyrics are fairly easy to learn and the basic Spanish words can be picked up quickly. There are translations in English as well.

My favorite song is "Como Se Llama La Llama?" (What's the Llama's Name?). The beat is of merengue music, making you want to dance along. Some of the other songs focus on holidays, like Valentine's Day and Mother's Day. It's the perfect album to listen to year round. There are also great lullabies like "Duermete Mi Nino" and "Duermete Mi Ni�a" for bedtime listening.

This CD's purpose is to teach young children how to speak Spanish. Some of the songs tell stories and others are lullabies. The first track is named "Buenos Dias, Amiguitos" (Good Morning, Little Friends), which serves as the welcome introduction to the soundtrack.

I give Buenos Dias! Spanish Learning Songs 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 9. It is available to order at now. Look for it.

By Heather S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

!Buenos D�as! Spanish Learning Songs is an eclectic and happy collection of children's music that lifts the spirits from the moment you play the first song. It is great, not only for multicultural families, but also for those that love to explore different cultures, discover traditions from other countries and learn a second language.

I love how diverse this compilation of children songs is. You can enjoy different rhythms from different countries including Mexico, Peru and Colombia from South America and also flamenco from Spain. You can sing and dance along with the songs to the beats and sounds of salsa, merengue and Caribbean tunes from traditional children's songs from Spanish speaking countries.

Families can enjoy !Buenos D�as! Spanish Learning Songs musically and as a learning experience as well. The CD comes with a booklet with lyrics in Spanish and their English translations, so parents and kids can learn while they sing. The lyrics contain a great amount of basic vocabulary about animals, nature, food, music and human relationships.

The selections of songs, recording, arrangements and production is of the highest quality. The voice of Cuban-American Soprano singer Ileana Perez is beautiful and her Spanish enunciation is very clear. The musical production is impeccable and it is also an enriching experience while learning music.

The 15 tracks in !Buenos D�as! Spanish Learning Songs are all enjoyable. I recommend !Buenos D�as! Spanish Learning Songs for kids ages 2 to 10, as well as the whole family. I give it 5 out of 5 stars for its exceptional music quality and the fascinating learning experience. It's available now, so look for it.

Reviewed by Zoe C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 40 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 3-9 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: AUDIO

Description - An authentic, intimate depiction of the contemporary cowboy, COWBOYS: A DOCUMENTARY PORTRAIT straps audiences in the saddle alongside working men and women on some of today's largest and most remote cattle ranches in the American West. Told genuinely and reverently through first-hand accounts from cowboys in the deepest, most isolated parts of America, the timeless documentary illustrates not only the rewards of a cowboy's lifestyle but also the unvarnished hardships of a celebrated but misunderstood way of life.

Utilizing their extensive collective backgrounds, co-directors John Langmore (published ranch photographer and former working cowboy) and Bud Force (rodeo cowboy turned award-winning director/DP) provide an aesthetically mesmerizing, sure-handed look at how Western traditions have found a way to coexist with society's modern achievements.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like Cowboys: A Documentary Portrait because it held my interest and I learned a lot about cowboys that I didn't know before. I like learning about their lifestyle, their customs, traditions and habitat.

This movie documents how cowboys and their families live in some of the most isolated ranches in America and it teaches the audience about the cowboy lifestyle and duties. Being a cowboy is like any other profession, with the difference that it is not an easy job. A cowboy's job is mostly physical. They raise cows and bulls to make a living. They make lots of sacrifices like not being with their family, because they spend a lot of hours working. Even though cowboys work all year, they only get paid once or twice a year.

My favorite part is when a cowboy's young wife shares what it is like to be married to a cowboy. They live isolated and far away from town. It takes her nine hours to drive to town to go grocery shopping. She makes sure her two little children don't get injured, because even the hospital is far away. This movie was filmed at eight different ranches. The aerial shots showing the landscapes are amazing. This film documents the importance and value of being a cowboy, showing the audience how being a cowboy is a profession. It is not just the hat, the boots or riding a horse. It is more than that and it is not easy to be one. The background music is well selected. You should be aware that there are some gory scenes that are not suitable for smaller children.

The theme of this film is to see the cowboys for what they do, not for who they are. People only see their outfits and their horses; they think that's all they are. People don't see they are hard-working professionals that make sacrifices living in isolation, working long hours in the fields. Cowboys are a very important part of this country. Not everybody is born to be a cowboy.

I give Cowboys: A Documentary Portrait 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18 plus adults. This film will be released November 17, 2020. Mark your calendar so you don't miss it!

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: TV SERIES, AGES 2-9
Description - Hailing from DreamWorks Animation and based on Dan Yaccarino's "Doug Unplugged" book series, "Doug Unplugs" follows a young robot named Doug who senses there's more to life than just the facts. While other robots plug in for their daily download, curious Doug unplugs and journeys into the human world, and with his best friend Emma, experiences its wonders firsthand. "Doug Unplugs" is executive produced by Jim Nolan, Aliki Theofilopoulos and Dan Yaccarino, and stars the voice talents of Brandon James Cienfuegos, Kyrie McAlpin, Eric Bauza, Mae Whitman, Leslie David Baker and Becky Robinson.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like the animated series Doug Unplugs because it blends fun and education. I like how vibrant the characters are and how I learn something new from each episode. Every episode also has music incorporated into it, which adds another fun element to the show.

Doug Unplugs is an AppleTV+ series about a six-year-old robot named Doug (Brandon James Cienfuegos) who unplugs to visit the human world to learn about things. He gets together with his best friend Emma (Kyrie Mcalpin), who teaches him about a bunch of stuff from her world--whether it's explaining what table tennis is or describing what people do at a beach. Doug is full of curiosity, while Emma is always excited about what she can show her friend next. They have a bunch of new experiences together and always seem to be having a good time.

My favorite character is Emma because she is super outgoing and gets excited about everything. She reminds me of myself, since I'm outgoing too. I also like how there are songs in the episodes. They mostly are upbeat songs that help you remember something special about the episode. Sometimes they get stuck in your head because they are pretty catchy. The animation of this series is full of color and is really cute. Brandon (who voices Doug) and Kyrie (who voices Emma) have perfect voices for their characters. They both have good energy, which makes you want to watch the next episode to see what adventure they will go on. If you like learning about things, you'll enjoy watching this series.

The message of the film is to always be curious about things and don't be afraid of trying something new. Just because you are unfamiliar with something doesn't mean you should be scared of it. You might learn something and have fun doing it. I know I was a little scared to try snow skiing, but once I tried it, I had so much fun--even thought I might have fallen a few times.

I give Doug Unplugs 5 out of 5 stars and recommend the series for ages 2 to 9, although adults will probably enjoy watching this series with their kids because they might learn something, too. Doug Unplugs is available now, so check it out on Apple TV+.

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 2-9 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV

Series: DVD, AGES 4 - 12
Description - Seven girls live a rainbow ride away and whenever there's trouble, the Rangers zoom into action across the sky to save the day!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Rainbow Rangers: Rangers To The Rescue is a perfect choice for kids who like adventure and friendship. All the episodes present real problems that the Rainbow Rangers have to solve. This is a good way to show young viewers how to problem solve. The characters are always working together and demonstrate how working together gets things done much quicker.

In the seven different episodes there are different problems on Earth that the Rangers go down and help solve. While doing that they teach important life lessons.

My favorite part out of all of the episodes is when Floof makes an entrance into the main space. It shows that they, even when working to solve problems, the Rangers still have fun and are relaxed about things.

The voice actors in this series are terrific, making sure you know what emotions the characters are feeling though their voice talent. I especially like the voice of Kalia which is played by Phillipia Alexander. Her performance stands out because she makes her tone motherly when she talks with the Rangers and always sounds worried when telling them about the horrible problems taking place. I also like Dan Russell's voice-acting as Preston Praxton, especially when his character sounds indifferent. I love the animation and the storylines also. They make the show. One of the things that jumped out to me in this show is what how the animation makes making the movements of the characters look so natural and how they take positions that real people would stand in, rather than stand straight upright. By mimicking human stances, the characters feel more lifelike.

The message of this series is about teamwork and how you can get a lot more done and do a much better job at something if you have work together with your peers. In all of the episodes teamwork is a prominent part.

I give Rainbow Rangers: Rangers To The Rescue 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 7. Reviewed by Julie S. and Lorelei T.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like the Rainbow Rangers, Rangers to the Rescue! DVD because it is an educational and fun animation show, for mostly a girl audience, but boys can enjoy it too.

This DVD is about seven girls who are named Rainbow Rangers. They have colorful hair and space type outfits. Each one of these girls is unique. They each have their own personalities and powers. They live in a place named Kaleidoscopia. The Rangers have wristbands that ring when they are needed. Whenever there is trouble for people or animals on Earth, the Rangers ride a rainbow in their space-type scooters and go to their rescue. They have a unicorn named Floof as a pet that helps them too. This DVD includes eight very exciting episodes filled with adventures. Each episode is approximately eleven minutes long.

My favorite episode is "Bee Safe," because it is about a mama elephant and her two baby elephants crashing into a farm, looking for food to feed her babies. The Rangers come to rescue their friend's, Milika, farm. One of the Rangers finds out the mama elephant is afraid of bees so the Rangers use their powers to protect the farm by constructing small bee houses and placing them in front of Milika's farm. They tie them all together so the mama elephant will trip on them and all the bees will come out and scare the elephants away. Also, the Rangers find a food source for the elephants so Milika's farm will be safe from the elephants. This show's animation is digital, which makes it very neat. The graphics are colorful and bright. The theme song is appealing and very catchy. The voiceovers for each character are great.

Each episode's storyline promotes the idea of "team work makes the dream work." All seven Rangers help those who are in need. Each one has their own powers, but when work together they are stronger and their job is made much easier.

I give Rainbow Rangers, Rangers to the Rescue! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 4 to 18 plus adults. Even though this animation show is mostly for girls, boys will enjoy it as well. This DVD is available now so look for it.

By Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I love Rainbow Rangers, Rangers to the Rescue! so much!! It made me smile and laugh the whole time. I kept on watching until there were no more episodes left and watched it again. I am sure this DVD will become every little girl's favorite one!!

This DVD is about a group of girls and little cute boy unicorn saving the world!! There are seven main characters, each with different strengths. And there are seven episodes. These girls face challenge issues in each episode and have to use their power to make each other stronger to solve problems.

The characters include Rosie Redd, Mandarin Orange, Anna Banana and there are many more. They are as adorable as much as their names. My favorite character is Fluff, the magical unicorn. He can magically present yummy treats and share them with his friends. In addition, his hair is awesome like a rainbow. The director Rob Minkoff and the writer Shane Morris have created a unique story as ell as characters. The bright and vivid colors keep your eye on the story every second. And their costumes are just so cute. The main song perfectly matches the characters and stories. It is hard to let it go after hearing a few times.

The message is of this film is to be kind to others, then others will be kind to you. The Rangers all help each other, make each other more powerful and always care about others.

I give Rainbow Rangers, Rangers to the Rescue! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 10. It is available now on DVD so look for it.

By Alexis J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

Epic! I recommend the DVD Rainbow Rangers: Ranges to the Rescue! because it shows how important is to help others and work as a team. What I like best is how all the girls are adventurous, have different powers and work together to solve problems.

This DVD is a compilation of episodes from the TV show Rainbow Rangers. It follows the Rainbow Rangers who live in Kaleidoscopia. They protect nature and the land. Each of the eight girls has different powers. Their home is full of unicorns, trolls and other creatures that they value greatly. The Rainbow Rangers show up to help wherever they are needed. They are strong, kind, thought and smart leaders. The show is full of unexpected circumstances that the Rainbow Rangers are ready to assist and get things back on track.

Mandy Orange is my favorite Ranger because she always finds a way to keep things positive. I love how the girls solve problems. Rainbow Rangers is full of girl power. The cinematography and special effects are extraordinary. The production uses vibrant colors and engaging attributes in the characters, down to their costuming. What makes this show stand out is how it empowers girls with very different appearances. I like that the show is inclusive of all types of girls and characters. My favorite part is when the girls fly off to an adventure to protect the creatures, people and the land of Kaleidoscopia.

The message of the show is to always be considerate and help others.

I give the DVD Rainbow Rangers: Ranges to the Rescue 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 8. This DVD is available now, so look for it.

Reviewed by Bailey Rae F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 88 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: DVD

Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Former Chief Official White House Photographer Pete Souza's journey as a person with top secret clearance and total access to the President.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I love this documentary. Dawn Porter knocks it out of the park once again with her insightful showcase of the talented Pete Souza's photojournalism work. The behind the scenes shots of Obama, from the time he was a new senator in DC to his 8 year term as President of the USA, you see the humanness of this man. You see him as a husband, father and friend. You see how much he cared for his country, how deeply he felt the responsibilities of the Presidency. Some of the photos were familiar to me, many were not. The shot of the young black kid touching Obama's hair is one that sticks in my mind forever. The idea that he would bend over so this young boy could feel his hair and know that it was the same as his own - who does that? What world leader does that? Only Obama. When he goes to the Baptist church to the funeral of those that were murdered and begins to sing Amazing Grace, I almost lost it. I have seen clips of this before, but somehow Porter's documentary shows it to us in a new wry. Yes, I love him, and cherish the precious years that he was our President. Here's hoping that we will again experience such civility in our government and soon. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The sensational director, Dawn Porter, did it again with another entertaining and powerful documentary, The Way I See It! Porter is a genius at creating films based on inspiring images of her subjects and letting the pictures tell the story. The timing of this film is perfect because of upcoming Presidential elections and how it shows historic moments in the lives of past respectable Presidents through photos from the eyes of official White House photographer Pete Souza.

The Way I See It is a documentary based on Souza's New York Times #1 bestsellers, Obama: An Intimate Portrait and Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents. It gives an inside look of two powerful Presidents in U.S. history, Barack Obama and Ronald Reagan, through photographs taken by Pete Souza. It tells the story through clips from interviews and unique photos and shows the responsibilities of being the person holding the most powerful position on Earth.

Pete Souza was able to get an "up close and personal" look at monumental and intimate moments of former President Barack Obama and President Ronald Reagan during their terms. The setting of the film is at the White House. The scenes are very realistic because they are based on factual events. The documentary includes heartwarming clips and moments such as when these Presidents gave their speeches while running for office, their lives outside of being Presidents and just having fun. The music in this film really helps drive the story.

I love that The Way I See It did not feel like just a documentary meant to show how America is in the state it is in now. The message of the film is that we have to look at our past to understand how we get to a certain place in life. While the film doesn't really talk about President Trump, it shows that our country was in a better place before he became President. I rate The Way I See It 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Adults that like documentaries and history will also love this film. You can find this film in theaters September 18, 2020 and premiering on MSNBC October 9, 2020.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE 12-18
Description - Paul lives an isolated life with his father in upstate New York. He finds making friends impossible due to a rare condition he has known as congenital hypertrichosis - an affliction that causes an abnormal amount of hair growth all over his face and body. On his 13th birthday, Paul receives a mysterious gift that compels him to run away and seek out the mother he has never known.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Is it a full moon outside? Because today I am howling that you need to check out The True Adventures of Wolfboy! This film is one big emotional journey that is extremely important for every young adult to see. Some movies might have a few lessons here and there, but this film is one big lesson. It might seem like a normal movie, but actually there is much more in the big picture. The film addresses many lessons or morals plus it has outstanding acting and amazing costume and makeup designs.

The True Adventures of Wolfboy follows a 13-ear-old boy named Paul (Jaeden Martell) who suffers from hypertrichosis. This disease makes it so you have abnormal hair growth around your body. For Paul, growing up, he ends up being called a version of a werewolf or dog. Of course, no one ever wants this to happen to themself, so it makes it extremely hard for Paul. One day, he receives a gift from his estranged mother, telling him to come find her because she has an explanation for everything. This leads Paul to go on a journey, not just a physical journey, but an emotional journey of self-acceptance.

As you can imagine, it must take a lot of makeup to make someone look like a wolf boy so naturally, the makeup department's work to make Jaeden Martell look like a wolf boy is extraordinary. Another great aspect of this film is the acting. John Turturro's portrayal of Mr. Silk is especially astounding, because he makes his character stand out and appear so authentic that you will remember his character long after the credits roll.

The True Adventures of Wolfboy includes some profanity, including one F-word, some under-age drinking, bullying and mild-violence. However, the movie is one very big lesson teaching viewers to be comfortable in your own skin. No matter what you think, you are amazing - plain and simple. Any differences you have just make you special and you should embrace them. This movie is a must-see for anyone who is struggling with themselves, because it helps you come to grips with who you are and reminds you how amazing you truly are.

I am howling that my rating for The True Adventures of Wolfboy is 5 out of 5 stars because of the emotional journey the film takes you on and because of the life-changing morals and theme. I recommend The True Adventures of Wolfboy for ages 12-18, plus adults, because of the language and sensitive topics. You can find The True Adventures of Wolfboy on digital on October 30, 2020.

Reviewed by Jude A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: SHORT, AGES 5 - 18
Description - Olaf's first steps as he comes to life and searches for his identity in the snowy mountains outside Arendelle.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - This is just the comedic break from reality that I needed. Once Upon a Snowman is an entertaining short film about the origins of Olaf from the Frozen films that tickles the nonsensical humor in me.

From "I'm having a bit of a crisis of identity, I think" to "That's very generous, fuzzy man bear," Olaf surely has a lovable personality and we see in eight minutes how Olaf, our favorite snowman, came to exist. I love how Olaf manages to keep his spirits up even when he has no idea who he is, what his name should be or what should become his nose - a flag? paddle? carrot? The best part is at the most troublesome moment of the entire film when he yells "Use the buddy system" to the separated parts of his body while being chased by a predator.

It's people, or might I say snowmen, like Olaf from whom we should learn how to deal with adversity. Olaf just goes for things without hesitating. He doesn't sit around and wait for his problems to be solved for him. He looks at himself in the mirror and asks if he is a "Trevor." He tests out a sausage as a nose and when all of it fails, he just keeps trying until he gets the answers he needs. We may not have to worry about the same problems as Olaf, but we can learn from his behavior. There is always a solution to every problem. We just have to go out and find it. This film also dives into how Olaf may be a snowman, but is warm at heart. People may seem cold as ice on the outside, but if you get to know them like we get to know Olaf, you may realize that they are not all that they seemed. They may become a good friend, but you won't know until you look past their outer demeanor. Olaf is the kind of snowman who helps those in despair and makes new friends along the way, whether it's a human or a wolf.

I rate Once Upon a Snowman 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 12, and older. You can stream it on Disney+ now.

Reviewed by Anokhi L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic age 18
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Like most Disney animated shorts, Once Upon a Snowman is fun, colorful and full of all your favorite Frozen characters. It's full of comedy, discovery, nostalgia, lots of snow and of course....magic!

In the new eight minute long Disney+ animated short Once Upon a Snowman, we get to see the previously unseen and untold origins of everyone's magical and warm-hug loving snowman, Olaf. This film offers a behind-the-scenes adventure from the moment Olaf is brought to life by Elsa as she makes her way up the Arendale mountains to build her ice fortress singing "Let it Go," and then follows Olaf as he begins to discover who and what he is. In just a small amount of time, we get a really fun, behind-the-scenes look at some of our favorite scenes of the original movie, as seen from Olaf's point of view and through his wanderings around the frozen forest of Arendale. It is really fun to see iconic scenes with some of the other characters, seen from Olaf's point of view, and finally we learn how and why he loves summer so much!

The message of this film is to always ask questions and be friendly with everyone you meet, because you never know what answers they will give you and what sort of friendship could evolve, just from saying, "Hello."

If you love the Frozen movies and the Frozen animated shorts, then you'll love Once Upon a Snowman. I give Frozen 5 out of 5 snowflakes (y'know, because it's about Olaf) and recommend it for ages 5 to18, plus adults, as well as Disney fans, will absolutely love it too. Once Upon a Snowman debuts on Disney+ on Oct 23, 2020. Don't miss it.

Reviewed by Lindalee R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 8 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO

Series: FEATURE, AGES 13-18
Description - Young musician Zach Sobiech discovers his cancer has spread, leaving him just a few months to live. With limited time, he follows his dream and makes an album, unaware that it will soon be a viral music phenomenon.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Clouds is an inspirational story that helps the viewers to realize the value of our time. Not only is the message beautiful, but the cinematography is beautiful, as well. It is a powerful film that will make you reach for tissues.

The film is based around the true life story of Zach Sobeich. Zach was a high schooler diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a type of cancer, and told that he had less than a year to live. Instead of giving up on the rest of his life, he decided to make the most of it. He started to write music and set up the band A Firm Handshake. He wrote the song Clouds, which was a viral hit on song charts in countries around the world. Zach Sobiech inspires others to do the same as he: make the most of life. In the film, Zach Sobiech (Fin Argus) tells viewers that you don't have to be told you are dying in order to start living.

Zach Sobiech's best friend Sammy, is played by Sabrina Carpenter, an exceptional actress who draws the audience into the emotional scenes. The family members of Zack Sobiech, such as the mother Laura Sobiech (Neve Campbell), the father Rob Sobiech (Tom Everett Scott) and the sisters Alli and Grace (Vivien Douglass and Summer Howell), are all exceptional actors as well. You can see how much they care for Zach Sobiech, how much they love him, and how badly they want him to live. The intense emotions they are able to convey is what brings the audience to tears.

The strategic cinematography by Ben Kutchins also brings the audience into the scenes and makes them feel as if they are right there, in the moment, with the characters. The strong performances of the actors combined with the excellent cinematography helps to deliver the message of the story right into the viewer's hearts. My favorite scene is when the story comes full circle while Zach is performing for his audience. They sing his own song back to him, just like he dreamed. At that moment, I felt really proud of him, and I felt his happiness.

The message of this film is to start going after your dreams now. Zach said that teens mistakenly feel invincible, and we always say that we'll start working towards our dreams tomorrow. Zach's story proves that life is a gift, and we have the power in our hands to make the most of it. With time, we can do anything we want, achieve anything we want, and be anything we want. We just need to take advantage of that power.

I rate Clouds 5 out of 5 stars. I really loved it, and I think that everyone else will too, even adults. I recommend it for ages 13 to 18. You should definitely go watch it now! Clouds is streaming on Disney+!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 13-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: Web Series

Description - Secretly filmed in Iran for over two years, NASRIN is an immersive portrait of human rights activist and political prisoner Nasrin Sotoudeh and Iran's remarkably resilient women's rights movement. Nasrin has long fought for the rights of women, children, LGBT prisoners, religious minorities, journalists and artists, and those facing the death penalty. She was arrested in 2018 for representing women who protested Iran's mandatory hijab law and sentenced to 38 years in prison, plus 148 lashes. Narrated by Academy Award-winning actress Olivia Colman and featuring acclaimed filmmaker Jafar Panahi, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi, journalist Ann Curry, exiled women's rights activist Mansoureh Shojaee, and Nasrin Sotoudeh. With an original song by Tony Award-winning composers Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty with lyrics based on Nasrin's letters from prison to her children; performed by 4-time Grammy winner, Ang�lique Kidjo.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Nasrin is an eye opener and really puts life into perspective! This documentary makes you want to jump off your couch and live your life. By the end of it, you'll feel so appreciative of liberties we take for granted.

This film is held together by first-hand video footage, calls and interviews with Nasrin Sotoudeh, an Iranian lawyer and human rights activist. The videos have time jumps, from 2006/2008 to more recent ones from 2016/2017. The majority of the movie is in Persian with English subtitles. Nasrin's letters are translated to English, narrated by Olivia Colman. The film also includes interviews with Nasrin's friends and family. The cinematographers keep their identities hidden, filming Nasrin in secret, as to not be persecuted.

The film really shows Nasrin's bravery. Videos of her talking on the phone about her cases show how passionate she is about her job. We see her not only as a lawyer, but as a mother and an activist. The highlight of this documentary is when Nasrin goes to protests and stands up for human rights. At the end of the movie, Nasrin's husband states how she will go to prison for the second time as a political prisoner. Her sentence is thirty four years and one hundred and forty eight lashes. We see people worldwide protesting her sentence, from Ireland, Turkey, Spain and the United States. Her sentence was reduced to twelve years and seventy four lashes. Iranian citizens still fight for her freedom.

The lesson to be learned from this film is to always fight for what you believe in. Nasrin fought for her clients as a lawyer and continues to fight for change in her country. She has defied boundaries by refusing to abide by the Iranian dress code and to participate in sit-in protests.

I give Nasrin 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 16 to 18, plus adults. It premieres at Doc NYC November 11, 2020.

By Heather S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 15-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: Web Series

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - Based on Roald Dahl's 1983 classic book 'The Witches', the story tells the scary, funny and imaginative tale of a seven year old boy who has a run in with some real life witches!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Witches is probably my favorite film of the year. Is not just beautiful; it is captivating, intriguing, perfectly scary, pure cinematic joy!

The Witches is a fantastic tale that grabs you from the very beginning. It is the story of a seven-year-old orphan boy that discover that witches are real! They hate kids and turn them into mice. I don't want to tell too much about the story, which is already well known. It is based on Roald Dahl's 1983 classic book by the same name. Since I haven't read the book, I want you to feel as surprised as I was in case you haven't read it or haven't watched the 1990 movie, also based on the book. If you have read it, you may love the way the characters come to life in this cinematic adaptation.

It is always inspiring to see Octavia Spencer. She plays any character so well and here, as the boy's grandmother and the voice of reason, she is fantastic. Anne Hathaway is from another world. I couldn't believe she could play this wicked character with such a grandiose attitude. She is now my favorite villain - scary, with lots of charm.

Another flawless performance is Stanley Tucci's Mr. Stringer. You can barely recognize him and he has just the perfect nuances and mannerisms to be a flamboyantly exquisite character. Last, but not least, Chris Rock is the perfect narrator with a totally engaging delivery and Jahzir Bruno, the boy, shines in his theatrical debut.

All the production aspects of this movie are very well done - the sets, costumes, cinematography, sound effects, editing, special effects, music. All together they create a great movie under the direction of Robert Zemeckis, who also wrote the script and, of course we can't expect less from the director of hits and gems of cinema like Back to the Future, Forrest Gump, Cast Away and so many other films. I also loved the imprint from Guillermo Del Toro who shares writing credits. There's a quality of fantastical monsters that are delightful, which I am sure has to do with his attachment to this film.

The Witches is a spooky story for our generation, with real twisted characters, gorgeous scenarios and a great story that reminds us of the importance of team work, the courage to face adversities and offers a tribute to the important role of grandmothers in a child's life.

I give The Witches 5 out of 5 starts and absolutely recommend it to kids 10 to 18, plus adults. Some scenes may be a little disturbing for younger kids, so think about that before taking them to see it. The Witches opens October 22, 2020 on HBO Max.

By Zoe C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: PODCAST, AGES 8-12
Description - When the Ventura twins are yanked into another dimension, they meet a distant cousin who gives them an extraordinary mission: travel through time to preserve their culture's true history. Alexa and Beni visit three continents across the span of five centuries, meeting people who have left their mark on Puerto Rican heritage. In the twenty-first century, the twins navigate school, friendship, and family while keeping their time-traveling quests a secret. When a natural disaster devastates islands across the Caribbean, the twins understand what is at stake for their ancestral homeland. As Puerto Rico faces an uncertain future, the twins witness, find, and remember its past. Produced by Cocotazo Media.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Timestorm is an exhilarating podcast with constant action that will excite young viewers. The story can be a little hard to follow at times, but the background sounds when they are in the timestorm signifies movement into the Timestorm, which helps you place you there. The show also throws a lot of educational and cultural information about Puerto Rico, intertwined with the exciting adventures.

The kids enjoy adventures as if they are traveling in time. They learn a lot about their Puerto Rican heritage and culture in the process. They have a very exciting and fulfilling time while jumping through history and learn far more than within the limitations of a classroom. My favorite part, aside from the story itself, are the sound effects which are fantastic. Of course, the characters are very expressive and dynamic, which is needed without a concrete visual.

The message of this podcast is that learning can be fun and that knowledge is exciting, fulfilling and opens so many doors.

I give Timestorm 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 14. Reviewed by Melissa M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Timestorm is a very interesting podcast series with a unique story line, which is important for something you can't see and only hear. I also like that it's different from movies or cartoons and TV shows because it's a podcast, so you have to develop listening skills and create the scenes in your mind.

This podcast is about a man named Horacio who finds two cousins, Alex and Beni Ventura. Horacio teleports them to the Timestorm, a place where they're not on planet Earth, but they're somewhere back in time. They start to learn about why they were brought there in the first place. Once they learn, they have to wait till the right time, which turns out to be when hurricane Maria comes. Hurricane Maria is the hurricane that devastated the island of Puerto Rico in September 2017. When the hurricane comes, they got to the Timestorm to start their mission. They are given clothes to fit the time they are going to. Horacio tells them not to mess with anything because it would change time in the present if they did. If you want to hear the rest, go listen to the podcast to know what happens after.

My favorite episode is number three, because listeners start to discover cool things about the Timestorm. In this episode, Alexa and Beni go into the Timestorm and learn about how their clothes have superpowers, and how they can speak any language with their clothes. My favorite character is Beni because he is like me: a gamer, loves books and thinks everything is an adventure.

This podcast has 20 episodes, each is approximately 15 to 30 minutes long, which is the perfect amount of time. The voice-overs are excellent, because each voice fits each character. What is interesting about podcasts is that they are sound only, but this podcast is designed with such original high quality that you can imagine the scenario as if you're watching it on a screen.

The moral of this podcast is you can't always be the hero--Alex and Beni want to help the world from the storm, but then they realize that you can't stop storms. They want to change the world, but if they do it would mess with history and possibly ruin the world. It teaches them that not everyone can be a hero or help people. Just do the best you can, like they did.

I give Timestorm 5 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. Adults will enjoy this podcast as well. Timestorm can be found online at Trax:

Reviewed by Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Runtime: 10 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: AUDIO

Series: PODCAST, AGES 8-12
Description - Why a period is so much more than punctuation. Feeling My Flo is a reported podcast where menstruation is an event that happens to all types of bodies. The show features menstruators who identify all along the gender spectrum and is geared toward young people eager for information and community as they experience one of the most transformative changes in their lives. In addition to centering the stories of menstruators from a broad swath of cultural and economic backgrounds, the podcast offers reliable and actionable information about the changes that occur when people menstruate. Feeling My Flo is produced by Lantigua Williams & Co.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I wish I had been exposed to a podcast like Feeling My Flo when I started my period! Young girls are told to just deal with, endure and stay silent. The stigma surrounding the menstruation cycle is heavy, and this is just the podcast for all the menstruators fighting the battle with this natural entity.

Feeling My Flo is an educational podcast hosted by Kamilah Kashanie that talks about how "menstruation is an event that happens to all types of bodies." In this 20 episode series, Kamilah speaks to menstruators of all kinds. Whether they are 10 years old and just beginning this journey or a transgender man. We learn about the innovative period projects that exist to destigmatize menstruation such as the period emoji, tampon run and even an educational comic book made in India. We learn about how menstruation can affect a woman travelling to space, be viewed differently throughout generations of women, and can affect the relationship between a father and daughter. There are even certified healthcare professionals giving their expert advice on the different stages of a period and how normal all of it is.

As a menstruator myself, I am thoroughly shocked at some of the facts that I hear in this podcast. NASA scientists thought that Sally Ride, the first American woman to go to space, would need 100 tampons for a week in space. But facts like that only make Feeling My Flo stand out from other forms of education on menstruation. I love that it includes the experiences of many types of people who get their periods and sheds a light on all of the embarrassing moments that all of us have definitely experienced. I love how concise yet detailed the script for this podcast is. In a short 20 episode run of about 10 minutes per episode, this podcast covers almost everything you may need to know about periods and the media surrounding them. If I could, I would make my 11-year-old self listen to this podcast when she started crying after her first period, because maybe then she would realize how normal what she is going through is. Kamilah Kashanie is an excellent host and an eloquent speaker. She really has a strong presence in her voice, and I am beyond excited to hear her future podcasts.

For all of the young girls and boys out there who don't understand the tumultuous world of the menstrual cycle, whether you will be or are experiencing it (or not), this podcast explains how all of it is normal and that there is nothing to be ashamed of. This podcast promotes starting a conversation whether that is with your parents, friends, or doctors. And not fully loving your period and accepting it for what it is, is completely okay. You are allowed to not be okay, to be in pain and take it easy for a few days.

I rate this podcast an easy 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to kids ages 9 to 18. I will probably also recommend it to my high school and middle school health teachers as well. You can listen to Feeling My Flo on Trax at

KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Feeling my Flo is a podcast that deals with menstruation talk over the course of 21 short episodes. To start off, it is produced gorgeously so the podcast really feels like a natural conversation. Credits to the lead producer, Cedric Wilson. Plus, the sound design, by Kojin Tashiro, is interesting to hear - especially the intro song. FFeeling My Flo is definitely worth giving a listen.

Feeling My Flo answers questions and concerns about people all across the gender spectrum that experience menstruation. This inclusivity is important as everyone deserves to be properly educated and prepared for such a big change in their life. Essentially, the goal of this podcast ventures deeper than just schooling teenagers on what's going on in their bodies; the creators try to normalize menstruation talk. Away with period shame!

While the production of the podcast is extremely important, the most attractive feature of Feeling My Flo is its ability to freely discuss all the variables that affect periods. This is not to say the production is anything less than phenomenal; it most certainly is. The episode where they highlight the ways eating disorders hurt your menstrual health is particularly memorable, as Annie goes into detail about her experiences. This episode should be viewed with an adult, as the content can be triggering. Overall, Feel the Flo is the perfect way to teach young people how to deal with their periods.

The message behind Feeling My Flo is to never be ashamed of the most natural thing your body can do - menstruation! A beautiful lesson every child should learn.

I rate Feeling My Flo 5 out of 5 stars and recommend this podcast for ages 8 through 16. You can find this awesome podcast online now at TRAX:

Reviewed by Joshitha B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Runtime: 10 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: AUDIO

Series: PODCAST, AGES 8-12
Description - Little guy, big questions. Tai Poole is trying to find answers to life's biggest questions. What happens after we die? What is love? How can we fix climate change? He may not solve them all, but give him a break...he's only 13-years-old. A CBC Original podcast.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Tai Asks Why, hosted by Tai Poole, offers a refreshing outlook on life that engages the childlike curiosity within me! As Tai lets his questions guide the way, I feel as though I am embarking on an exploration deep into the questions that guide our lives on a daily basis. Yet, on this profound journey, I laughed with Tai as our minds are boggled by the implications of new and fascinating scientific discoveries.

The podcast follows Tai's mission to unpack the mysteries of life ranging from personal dreams to world-wide apocalypses. Although a daunting task, Tai's enthusiasm invites his audience to feel like an active participant in his exploration.

Tai has the incredible ability to engage listeners of all ages. His younger brother, Kein, is only eight years old yet Tai uses his brother's opinion as a framework for asking more questions. To answer these questions, Tai reaches out to experts on the topic. For younger children who are Kein's age, the expert's insights may not be clear, but Tai overcomes the age barrier by explaining the concepts in a fun way, often renaming scientific ideas like the neural connection between the gut and brain as the "gut-brain's" friendship with the "head-brain." Even for those who do understand the concepts, such as myself, Tai's interpretations lighten the mood and help turn the expert's opinions into curiosity-quenching and sometimes hilarious insights into who we are.

Tai speaks to the listeners and his interviewees as though they are his best friends, not afraid to open up about tough experiences or confusing emotions. Due to this, I feel as though I have known Tai for many years and I never feel any inkling that he is a stranger.

The sound production heightens the interaction I feel with Tai and my favorite parts are the songs he sings to sum up the main points of his discoveries. The addition surprised me and I found myself leaving the podcast in a humorous and brightened mood. Even when he addresses topics like death, the song at the end offers hope in a lovable way.

I give Tai Asks Why 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18. I feel adults will enjoy the podcast too, because there is something for everyone to learn, whether it is scientific knowledge or a new perspective that emphasizes our connection to each other and to the world around us. Check out Tai Asks Why on TRAX at

Reviewed by Sahiba K.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A must-listen for all families, Tai Asks Why explores unique topics and provides listeners with knowledge they didn't even know existed! I specifically enjoyed the high-quality narration, exclusive interviews of professionals...and the fun puns thrown in that made me laugh.

Tai Asks Why is hosted by the show's namesake, Tai Poole, an award-winning child podcaster and "mathlete." Each episode of the podcast goes into detail about one intriguing concept in life and asks important questions about it. These topics range from love and d�j� vu to climate change and trusting our gut.

Tai's enthusiasm for learning, specifically in mathematical concepts, is palpable, and the listener also has fun along with him! Though he can stray a bit far from the mic at times, reducing the volume and clarity of his voice, Poole will definitely make you smile. And Tai's younger brother Kien makes some cameos, too, and many 'aww' moments follow. Several experts are also interviewed over the course of this podcast, including Chris Mullen, a neuroscientist from Switzerland. Tai asks insightful questions, many of which I would have echoed. As far as production goes, it is evident that the sound techs on Tai Asks Why know what they are doing. Masterful SFX blending and audio control make this podcast very easy on the ears. One thing I did notice was that sometimes during the interview segments, the audio cuts are very obvious; I could tell exactly where the sound techs had cut a clip. This does not detract from the amazing auditory experience, though.

Tai Asks Why is especially important in a time like 2020, when kids are exceedingly being drawn toward media that does not enrich their knowledge. This podcast is enriching and entertaining and promotes a message of learning through fun and exploration. This podcast is also unique because it has a child host, and kids can relate to Tai's experiences.

I give Tai Asks Why 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18. Adults will also enjoy this podcast. Tai Asks Why is available on now!

Reviewed by Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

The Tai Asks Why podcast is amazing. I love how a 13-year-old kid talks about so many interesting and questionable topics. Tai really brings something new to the table and hearing the perspective of another kid is really cool. Tai is such a curious boy and he has so much energy! The mind of a kid is so much more imaginative than regular adults.

This podcast describes what goes on around people and why those things happen to them. It gives clear explanations about many topics such as love, fear, the start of the English language, color, freckles, temperature, time and so much more. When you're looking to impress your friends with some random knowledge, this podcast is the place to go!

In this podcast, Tai talks to a psychologist, a writer, his mom, his younger brother and a bunch of strangers. Tai also digs deep into the science and history of all his topics about how our body and how the world works. In episode three, the psychologist that is brought in to discuss love is Jennifer Bartz, an associate professor at McGill University. Bartz introduces a whole new perspective on love and opened my eyes to how love really works. Another guest, in the fifth episode, is a guy named Tom Howell, who wrote a book called The Rude Story of English and some of the Oxford Dictionary. Towards the end of the episode "What is Love?," Tai makes up a little song about hugs and love, which adds a lot more spirit to his podcast and made me I definitely want to listen to more. My favorite part of this podcast is when Tai talks to the strangers at a coffee shop and asks them all about love. That is pretty funny.

The message of Tai Asks Why is about opening our eyes to the world around us and making us understand our surroundings on a new level. After listening you start seeing things differently than before and all of the information that you learned helps you become more aware of day-to-day life

I give Tai Asks Why 5 out of 5 and I recommend it for all ages. You can find this podcast online now at Trax. Https://

By Winter F., KIDS FIRST! Reviewer, age 14
Runtime: 10 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: AUDIO

Series: PODCAST, AGES 8-12
Description - A time-traveling women's voting rights adventure with Aly Raisman. The Magic Sash is a journey back in time hosted by gold medal athlete and advocate Aly Raisman. Join an 11-year-old boy and girl as they experience big moments in women's suffrage first-hand. They'll learn that what women and men fought for -- women's right to vote -- isn't dusty history at all. The Magic Sash is from the Women's Suffrage Centennial Commission and the National Park Service.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Magic Sash is a powerful and moving podcast well worth your listening time. This podcast incorporates accurate educational points in an entertaining fashion that will capture the attention of children.

An 11-year-old boy, Isaiah and girl, Lotty are given a class assignment to learn about the women's suffrage movement. When they meet up to work on the assignment, they discover a way to time-travel, and they get to learn about the women's suffrage with their own eyes. Lotty and Isaiah continue to journey though time and experience the biggest moments in the fight for women's right to vote.

Each episode of The Magic Sash is introduced and closed by gold medal athlete and advocate Aly Raisman. The podcast is high quality with each character having a unique voice. My favorite aspect is how the background sounds and music help bring the storyline to life.

The message that children's voices are important is woven throughout and encourages children to use their voice to accomplish what they are passionate about. This podcast would be great for teachers to incorporate into their curriculum. It focuses on the educational message of women's rights and equality while remaining entertaining, engaging and to the point. The Magic Sash is safe for all listeners, including classroom users, because it has no violence, profanity or bias present.

I give The Magic Sash 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 12. The podcast and supporting lesson plans can be found at

By Angela G., KIDS FIRST! Adult Reviewer
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like the podcast series, The Magic Sash, because it is interesting to learn about the women's right to vote. This podcast series, hosted by Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman, makes learning about history more fun than just reading about it in a book. This is particularly interesting since 2020 is a presidential election. I can't imagine what life would like if women couldn't vote. Listening to this podcast is both educational and fun.

The Magic Sash is a podcast series that follows two fifth graders, named Lotty and Isaiah, to travel back in time to observe important events that lead up to the women's right to vote. Lotty and Isaiah have to make a school presentation, so they get together at Lotty's house. There, they find a box labeled "Granny Flo," where they find a special "Vote for Women" sash, which transports them back in time. They then get to meet historically significant figures, including Lotty's distant relative, Florence Whitaker.

Each episode of about 15 minutes is filled with adventure. I like hearing the differences between what life was like back in the 1800s versus 2020. A simple thing like girls wearing pants was unheard of back in 1848. But in 2020, it's pretty common to see girls wearing pants. My favorite part of this podcast is hearing how excited Florence Whitaker is to see Lotty and Isaiah each time they visit her. It's funny when all three of them don't quite understand what is happening, but it's cool because even though they don't quite get what is happening, they enjoy each other's company. Sometimes I feel like Aly Raisman's commentary is a bit disruptive to the story, but it does help me understand what is happening. The use of music helps the listeners understand when Lotty and Isaiah are switching between time periods.

The message of the podcast series is that sometimes life is unfair, but that you should speak up about things that matter to you. I think Susan B. Anthony is brave and smart because she stands up to people and is strong in what she believes. I am thankful for having people like her so I can vote when I turn 18.

I give The Magic Sash 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 13. This podcast is available now, so go look for it from TRAX from PRX at:

By Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

The newly released podcast The Magic Sash is entertaining and educational! Aly Raisman, a gold-medal gymnast and advocate, hosts and she pops in multiple times during each podcast to give us some more facts about the events. What's incredibly impressive is that while it is educational, it is also really entertaining. The voice actors are animated, adding fun and detail to each episode.

The Magic Sash follows Lotty (Katelyn Joseph) and Isaiah (David Dotson) as they begin to prepare for their school project about women's rights. Together they unexpectedly dive into the past with a magical sash where they discover the challenges women faced in the 1800s and 1900s. They learn about the struggles that women's rights advocates went through just to make their voice heard. Florence (Jennifer Roszell) and Susan B. Anthony (Susan Riley Stevens) are the main advocates that Lotty and Isaiah learn about.

This podcast has many highlights, including how it really paints a picture in my head, which is especially important in a podcast. The educational facts about women's rights mixed with the edge-of-your-seat storyline are spot on. We get informed about many events in the history of women's rights, but it isn't just a boring fact list. It has a real, big-screen-worthy plot. All the characters are played by talented actors that not only speak in character, but also grab your attention with their tone. Also unforgettable are the sound effects. In entertainment where you can't actually see what is going on, the sound effects are so important. They illuminate what can't be described by voices. For example, when Lotty and Isaiah travel in and out of the past, there is a time-traveling sound that is always used. This is fantastic because I always know when they go back in time. The time warping could easily get confusing, but it's not because of the well-placed sound effects.

The message of this podcast is to be aware of women's rights. Throughout the entire podcast, we are enlightened with plenty of interesting facts. When Lotty and Isaiah are in the past, we learn about certain events by actually participating in them. Once they return back to the future, Aly Raisman usually informs us more about where we were and how that event made a difference in getting rights for women.

I give The Magic Sash 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 9 to14. It can be found free on Trax at

Reviewed by Kyla C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

The Magic Sash podcast is inspirational. It shows how women in the past did not have certain rights, like the right to vote. Strong women like Susan B. Anthony, Alice Paul and Elizabeth Cady Stanton and others supported a movement of women rights' protest.

The storyline follows a girl named Lottie and a boy named Isaiah who are studying together at Lottie's house. They go to the basement and find Lottie's great-great-grandmother's sash. As Lottie puts it around her chest, she doesn't know it is a magic time-traveling sash and it takes them back to the women's rights' protest time period. They have a learning history adventure. They meet Susan B. Anthony, Fedrick Douglas and Elizabeth Cady Stanton who are some of the key people in the movement. They also meet one special person, Lottie's great-great-grandmother and have the pleasure of making her dream come true - to vote for the first time. They keep time traveling and are really inspired by the way these women stood up for their rights.

This podcast is really interesting. I learned that women had to fight so they could vote. The adventures they have are so exciting. I couldn't wait to see what would happen next. There are eight episodes, based on history, but fictionalized.

The message of this podcast is that you should always fight for what you believe in and for what is right and you should never give up. This is how women's history was changed.

I give The Magic Sash 5 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18. You can find this podcast at TRAX by PRX at

By Sara Lea G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 15 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: AUDIO

Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - When a disgruntled elf sees her chance to take over the North Pole, she uses a magical machine to turn time backwards on Jolly Old Santa Claus and he begins getting younger-- and fast! With Mrs. Claus captured and in candy cane jail, it's up to a loyal elf, a little girl with a magical key, and the now-teenage Santa to turn forward the hands of time and save the future of Christmas.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Key to Christmas is a well put together and silly movie that will attract young viewers. The constant action really kept my attention. There are no moments of boredom and it has a good message.

Santa gets frazzled because of all the mistakes made by the head elf, Winnie. He fires her and she becomes angry and vengeful and comes up with an evil idea of turning the clock back, locking up Santa and sending him backward in time. Once he is a teenager, he comes up with ideas to try and get the other key back from Kirra.

The sets and costumes of the movie are very basic, but creative. The exciting story drew attention away from that. The soundtrack is exciting and really sets the tone. The plot is very predictable, but exciting and captivating, nonetheless. The characters' progressions are done well and individual to each.

The message of this film is to not lose hope and, if you are good, good things will happen and kindness prevails!

I give The Key to Christmas 4 out of 5 stars. Because of the level of anger and yelling I recommend The Key to Christmas for ages 5 to18, plus adults. This film is available on digital and DVD October 17, 2020. Look for it. Reviewed by Melissa M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Reviewer
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I love Christmas movies, and this is the season of when all the good holiday movies come out. The Key To Christmas is a good example. The actors are great and the storyline is really inspirational. If you like Christmas you will definitely like this movie. This really shows the true magic of Christmas and how people can change.

The storyline is about an elf named Winey (Samriddhi Singh) who is always getting into trouble with Santa and she does not like Christmas. Winey decides to revisit the past in a time machine and ruin Christmas forever. She messes with time and, guess what? Santa stops growing and stays a teenager! While he is a teenager he is always giving up so he cannot help the other elves. As time goes by, Santa gets younger instead of older and Winey and her elf friend ruin Christmas, or they try to.

This film has great acting. The actors have amazing energy and are fun to watch. The costumes are superb. The sets are terrific. For example, the Christmas factory set is so pretty with toys everywhere and Christmas decorations on everything. There is a cool time machine in Santa's office and tons of other great things. This film is so enjoyable movie to watch from start to finish.

The message in this film is to think before you act, because you can get hurt or get other people hurt. You could even get in trouble.

I rate The Key To Christmas 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18. You can find it online and on DVD October 17, 2020.

By Sara Lea G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10.

There's just something magical about the holiday season and the movie The Key to Christmas! In this film a disgruntled elf sees her opportunity to displace Santa Claus by "gifting" him with youth. Holy Nutcracker Santa takes a forced holiday and the mayhem that ensues is sure to entertain your family.

The Key to Christmas opens with traditional holiday scenes, delightfully accompanied by the magical work of music composer Thomas Beckman which really sets the holiday mood. A girl, Kirra (Camryn Macdonald), surprises Santa (Scott Osborne) as he delivers gifts and he mistakenly gives her a special gift which obviously was not meant for her. Santa promises to fix Christmas. Meanwhile back at the North Pole, there's a rebellion which complicates things as Mrs. Clause is placed in Candy Cane Jail. It's up to our favorite elf Lovey (Katherine Alpen) and Kirra to find the key that Santa left behind.

I love the perfectly cast Katherine Alpen in her goofy and adorable role as Lovey. The other heroine, Kirra, played by Camryn Macdonald really steals the show. Her facial expressions and emotions really come through as her character struggles to believe in the wonder and magic of Santa Claus and Christmas. Without giving anything away, the scenes searching for the lost key and Kirra's disbelief are really timely and funny. Jason Mills is the Director, Executive Producer, Cameraman, Editor, Set Designer and Writer, among other roles. It's safe to say this is a Jason Mills' film. It's a special story as the cast races to save the future of Christmas.

The message of this film is to never stop believing in the magic of Christmas and the goodness of others. Do you believe? You may have to rise above your doubts and fears to overcome challenges, believe in yourself and the righteousness of your cause to prevail.

I rate The Key to Christmas 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 8, plus adult family members. The Key to Christmas is available on Digital and DVD October 17, 2020. Look for it.

By Selene W., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 2-11
Description - Four curious young dinosaur friends explore the mystery of Gigantosaurus, the largest, fiercest dinosaur of all.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The DVD Gigantosaurus: Season 1, Volume 1, a collection of episodes from the animated children's TV show, is incredibly adorable and perfect for preschoolers. The voice acting is very high quality and the dialogue easy for kids to understand. Cyber-Group Studios' animation is quite smooth, plus the cinematography, by Director Olivier Lelardoux tells the story clearly with its high-key lighting and, for the most part, eye-level shots. With each episode presenting a new fun adventure for four friendly dinosaurs, it will surely keep your kids' interest peaked.

The storyline follows Rocky, Tiny, Marshall and Mazu - a pack of dinosaurs that spend their time going on exciting journeys that often involve provoking the most threatening dinosaur of all, Giganotosaurus! As time passes, the group finds out that perhaps that the biggest dinosaur isn't so scary after all.

The way the story is told is very engaging for young minds. The episodes stand alone quite well so you don't need to watch it in chronological order to understand what's going on -- always a plus in a kids' show. The production design is appropriate for youngsters. For one thing, the color schemes are bright and eye-catching, so it really sets a childish mood. There are plenty of things for children to learn from in the show - being smart is like a superpower, boldness is essential to success. When it comes to preschool DVDs, Gigantosaurus: Season 1, Volume 1 is the cream of the crop.

The message that Giganotosaurus always promotes is "never judge a book by its cover." The other dinosaurs often fear Giganotosaurus because he is huge, but he is actually very nice and completely unlike their expectations.

I rate Gigantosaurus: Season 1, Volume 1 a 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 8. The DVD is available now so look for it.

By Joshitha B., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I enjoyed the DVD Gigantosaurus: Season 1, Volume 1 because this collection of episodes is full of adventure. I think kids will really like to watch this series featuring four young dinosaurs named Rocky, Bill, Tiny and Mazu who are all afraid of a huge dinosaur named Gigantosaurus.

Each one of these 26 episodes tells stories about this crew of four characters who are best friends. In one episode, they try to get one of Gigantosaurus's scales; in another episode, Rocky (Dylan Schombing) tries to be brave and goes to the top of a volcano. Many wild things happen to the group of friends through their adventures, but they always seem to figure things out.

My favorite part of this series is the time when Gigantosaurus slaps Rocky with his tail, and Rocky flies through the air. It is a super funny part because what seems like a bad thing at first--getting hit with Gigantosaurus's tail--ends up helping Rocky get to where he wanted to go. I also like the upbeat theme song at the beginning of each episode--it sets an energetic tone. I like the animation because each character is cute and colorful. Rocky is my favorite character because he may be small, but he's super confident.

The message of the film is don't judge people or things by what they look like. Just because Gigantosaurus looks scary, he might not necessarily be mean or evil. And even though Rocky is on the smaller side, he still can be really brave. (I understand because I get judged for being small, but I am capable of many things that might surprise people!)

give Gigantosaurus 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 10. This DVD is available now, so look for it.

By Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Gigantosaurus: Season 1, Volume 1 is a very cute and entertaining animated series for younger kids to enjoy with friends and family. What I like the most about this DVD is that it comes in a gift box package which includes two discs with 26 episodes of Gigantosaurus and two action figures, Rocky and Mazu adding up to over four hours of fun.

Gigantosaurus: Season 1, Volume 1 is about four small funny dinos living in the forest and discovering new things. The dinos Rocky, Bill, Tiny and Mazu are the perfect team. Rocky is a red dino who is very brave. Bill is a blue dino that is kind of scared of literally anything. Tiny is a green dino who loves to be silly, tell jokes and have fun. Mazu is a brown dino who is extremely smart, and he is the one with the brains. These four together have incredible adventures and they help anyone along the way. There's one thing that they cannot do, which is go near Gigantosaurus. Gigantosaurus is the biggest, fiercest dino of all. He is 100x their size and can destroy anything in his path. He does help them, though; he gets them food by walking because the trees shake when he moves around causing the coconuts to fall.

This educational preschool TV series is based on a book and was first made into a series in France. The graphics are super impressive, the voice-overs fit each character and the music is appealing. My favorite episode is "Don't Cave In" because it's about how Tiny hears a rumor that there's a monster in a cave. The gang is running away from Giganto, when they run into the cave that they weren't meant to.

One of the morals of the series is not to brag because Rocky brags about how he was going to win the talent show, but instead he crashes it. This tells kids not to brag in any way or form--instead just do your best.

I rate Gigantosaurus: Season 1, Volume 1 the highest, 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18 plus adults can enjoy this DVD with their kids as well. It is available now, so look for it.

By Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Runtime: 290 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 14.99 Media: DVD

Series: TV SERIES, AGES 9-18
Description - Everyone's favorite family is back for the 31st season of the longest running scripted primetime show in television history, "The Simpsons." With an all-star lineup of guests including Bill Porter, Jane Goodall, Jason Momoa, Cate Blachett, and Kevin Feige, special musical performances from the likes of Weezer and John Legend, and fan-favorite episodes "Thanksgiving of Horror" and "Treehouse of Horror XXX," the latest season joins Disney+'s comprehensive collection of more than 600 episodes, "The Simpsons Movie," and animated shorts "Maggie Simpson in 'Playdate with Destiny'" and "Maggie Simpson in 'The Longest Daycare."
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Simpsons Season 31 is charming, funny and, as always, the writing on Matt Groening's long-running animated satire is witty and hilarious. I love how in the first episode Homer gets rejected on a sports show so he starts his own, and how they poke fun at how sports shows never get to the point. I also love how they throw in the message of feminism when Marge gets her anger out by chopping wood and becoming a lumberjack in episode six. It is very funny when Superintendent Chalmers says, "I know who would do anything for money as long as it does not involve kids. TEACHERS!"

The Simpsons is an animated series about a family that includes Homer, a conservative alcoholic dad, Marge, a stay at home mom who takes care of everyone, Lisa, their genius, liberal daughter, Bart, their troubled son, and Maggie, a baby who can't talk but sucks on her pacifier. It's also about the town of Springfield and its citizens, which really represents any small town in middle America. The Simpsons uses satire to comment on social issues and politics. They make heavy issues funny and easy to digest. Like giving Homer, who is pretty dumb, an important job at a nuclear power plant.

I love all of the characters' voices. A few of my favorites are Lisa Simpson (Yeardley Smith), Bart Simpson (Nancy Cartwright), and Marge Simpson (Julie Kavner). One of my favorite Simpsons moments is when the family dog, Santa's Little Helper, is reunited with his mother in episode 22. It's heartfelt and sweet. The animation is colorful and really brings the characters and the town to life while creating its own world.

One positive message in The Simpsons is acceptance of diversity. There are characters of different races, religions and political views, and they all find a way to get along. The Simpsons does have a lot of adult themes and may not be appropriate for younger kids. There is sexual language and suggestive situations. Homer is a major drinker and goes to a bar called Moe's Tavern, nightly.

I give The Simpsons 5 out of 5 stars. I definitely recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. You can watch The Simpsons Season 31 on Disney+ starting Oct. 2.
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV

Description - Produced by Grammy nominee Chris Jay, David Shipman, Aaron Safer and Music Arranger Jamsheed Master, The Baby Mine Project: A Lullaby Collection is the first major fundraising campaign for the recently established non-profit whose mission is to support the health and wellness of children in underserved areas of Africa while providing them a source of comfort through the development of music and art. Curated by The Baby Mine Project's creator and co-founder Shipman, the collection features a diverse group of U.S. artists and African children's choirs coming together in a compilation of familiar and new songs designed to provide comfort and soothe the listener, regardless of age, all for a good cause.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Baby Mine Project: A Lullaby Collection is a finely crafted, produced and performed album of original and classic melodic tunes guaranteed to gently nudge your little one to sleep. The addition of The African Children's Choir and the Kenyan Boys Choir is a treat along with a talented array of terrific vocalists. Deft arrangements and instrument choices are spot-on and perfectly support our journey to Dreamland.

Impeccable arrangements and performances. Since this is a lullaby album, I certainly recommend it to parents who are seeking quality music for their child that will grow with them.

The quality of the material coming from a variety of sources flows extremely well. The intelligent song choices, whether classic or original, fit the lullaby genre like a glove. Themes of peace and love permeate, along with gentle reminders that the little ones are being watched over and cared for. Again, it comes around to the soothing production and the terrific vocal performances.

Lullabies are an individual choice for parents to utilize as an aid for creating a soothing transition to dreamland and, in some cases, represent music, styles and artists they want to expose their child to. All the songs contained are terrific and carefully chosen and performed very well. It is lovely recorded.

Bottom line: the child is hopefully asleep - mission accomplished. As a fundraiser for the non-profit Baby Mine Project the purchase of this album supports children in Africa and beyond. Kudos to the creators for doing that. I give The Baby Mine Project: A Lullaby Collection 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 0 to 4. Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Music Specialist
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like the CD The Baby Mine Project: A Lullaby Collection, because it reminds me of listening to my church choir. All the songs are very calming and relaxing. They are perfect if you're feeling stressed out or, for a baby having a hard time falling asleep. I will listen to this again when I need to take it easy and take a break from a challenging situation.

Some of the songs are about being brave and doing things by yourself and being confident in yourself. Other songs make you want to go to bed. I definitely can see playing this CD if you have to put your baby or younger sibling to bed. It would probably make a kid stop crying because it's soothing to listen to.

My favorite song is "A Million Dreams" because it is the cover song from the musical The Greatest Showman which I love. I always love hearing songs sung by a variety of people because each sings it differently and that is so cool and interesting. I especially enjoy the version of "A Million Dreams" which delivers it in a way I've not heard before. All of the singers on this CD have beautiful voices.

The message of this collection of songs is to always believe in yourself, even if things are hard. You just have to push to get through them. Sometimes I do not feel confident in myself when things get really hard, but I keep telling myself "you can do this," it keeps me moving forward.

I give The Baby Mine Project: A Lullaby Collection 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 12 plus adults.

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

I can't name an album that sounds as angelic and ethereal as The Baby Mine Project: A Lullaby Collection. This collection brings back a desire to crawl into my mother's arms and be cradled to sleep letting the world around me slow down exponentially in the process.

The Baby Mine Project's mission is to support the health and wellness of children in underserved areas of Africa while providing them a source of comfort through the development of music and art. This CD is produced by Aaron Safer and David Shipman, along with Grammy nominee Chris Jay. It includes 13 songs by various artists including the African Children's Choir. You might recognize some of the songs in this collection as they are renditions with a heavenly delicacy from classic Disney songs.

I adore the celestial background music going on behind the lead singer in multiple songs. It adds an extra divine layer to the song. It feels like I am laying down on an open field of flowers and angels are flying about and singing to me. Sometimes I imagine that I am being lifted into the kingdom of heaven. I can only imagine how the little cherubs that get this lullaby played to them as they drift off into peaceful sleep might feel. One of my favorite songs in this collection has to be You'll Be In My Heart sung by Kristen Michelle Wilson, originally from Disney's Tarzan. I've fallen in love with Disney songs like that throughout my childhood so to hear it in a lullaby rendition makes me fall in love with it all over again, in a completely different way. I also love the song You Are My Sunshine sung by Julia Ceslee Marie as the cute vocals are backed with a ukulele to make a super sweet song. I also can't forget to mention Hushabye Mountain sung by Robyn Adele Anderson for its fantastically mysterious sound. Overall this collection is one I would listen to on my own. I have already listened to it twice and I am currently listening to it as I write this review.

I rate this CD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for infants to age 3. You can purchase The Baby Mine Project: A Lullaby Collection as a CD or digital at At least 50% of the gross proceeds go to The Baby Mine Project and the project is partnered with Ovi Childrens hospital, a non-profit hospital for Kenyan Orphans with life threatening illnesses. You can also listen to the complete collection on Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Amazon Music or purchase it on Itunes.

Reviewed by Anokhi L., KIDS FIRST!, age 18

Runtime: 43 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 0-5 Suggested Retail Price: $ 20 Media: AUDIO

MULAN 2020
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - To save her ailing father from serving in the Imperial Army, a fearless young woman disguises herself as a man to battle northern invaders in China. Mulan 2020 is a live-action adaptation of Disney's 1998 animated film of the same name, based on the Chinese folklore "The Ballad of Mulan." Directed by Niki Caro. With Yifei Liu, Donnie Yen, Li Gong, Jet Li.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Loyal, brave, true, honorable, and devoted, all describe aspects of Disney's new remake of the animated movie, Mulan (1998). Niki Caro, the director of this year's live-action version, took on the huge challenge of giving new life to the legendary tale of China's fearless girl warrior after 22 years. This action-packed, family film will keep viewers in suspense while tugging at their hearts along the way. Mulan offers us much to appreciate ...culture, a love for family, honesty, peace and so much more. We couldn't have asked for a better release date for Mulan, as its many messages are powerful and uplifting which are needed during these unsettling times in many communities.

The film follows a fearless young woman named Hua Mulan who is the daughter of Zhou, a warrior veteran. Mulan is not like other traditional women of her age. She is a uniquely gifted woman driven by the power of the chi, destined not to conform and marry the match of her parent's choice; rather she prefers to use her skills to fight as a warrior and to defend her country, town and family. Her father, who is traditional in his beliefs, warns Mulan to hide her gifts. Upon learning of a possible empire takeover by Bori Khan and his power hungry rebel group, one male from every household is ordered to enlist in the Imperial Army to defend their land. Mulan's father, the dad of two daughters, is not in good physical condition to take on this feat yet steps up to the challenge. Knowing that her father is in no shape to battle the enemy, Mulan sacrifices everything and faces death to disguise herself as the man of the household and train with the Imperial Army.

Yifei Liu, who plays Mulan, possesses great star power. She is fierce yet sensitive and shows viewers a wide variety of her emotions throughout the film. A huge shout out to the cinematography, art, set, costume, and make up crews for bringing such light, excitement, and brilliance to the legendary Chinese Empire. Every scene is colorful, bright, and full of life. China and New Zealand are perfect landscapes for the film sets and are perfect for captivating the viewers. And despite the adventure and suspense, the film entertains us with several scenes containing humor.

Mulan is a film with many messages of loyalty, bravery, honor, devotion to family, and more. The strongest message is about empowerment. Mulan, born into a culture where there is a clear division between the roles for men and women, chooses not to conform to tradition and claims her rights to be who she wants to be. Mulan is faced with many heartfelt decisions that, above all, could cause her death, yet she stays true to herself.

I give Mulan 4 out of 5 stars. I recommend it to ages 8 to 18. Mulan is the perfect family film and adults will love it as much as kids. Mulan will begin streaming on September 4th 2020 on Disney+. This is a film that you do not want to miss!

Reviewed by Dominic D., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

I love the new action-packed Mulan movie! The costumes and scenery in this live-action version of the animated film are stunning. Fans of Mushu will notice the new Mulan has no Mushu! However, this Mulan is a PG-13 movie with a lot of intense action, and I don't think that a talking dragon would fit in an action movie (sorry, Mushu!)

Mulan is about a girl (Lui Yifei) growing up in the male-dominated culture of the Imperial era of China. Women are supposed to be quiet, composed, graceful, elegant, poised and polite. But Mulan is different. She possesses a strong chi, something thought that only men could possess. When China is attacked by Bori Khan (Jason Scott Lee), one man from each family is required to serve in the Imperial Army to defend China. Mulan has one sister and no brothers, forcing her father to fight. He is already a war hero and was injured while serving and cannot fight, so she has no choice but to disguise herself as a man and take his place.

First and foremost, the cinematography is unbelievable! There are so many unique camera angles, and the colors are strong and vivid. Kudos to cinematographer Mandy Walker! Along with impressive special effects, the costumes and scenery are beautiful. There are several differences between the new Mulan and the original. I enjoyed the newer one as it is a lot more about girl power, and has an all-Asian cast. My favorite performance was from Liu Yifei-- her fighting skills are very realistic (because she practiced so much) and she has a calm fierceness that is so heroic! The new live-action version also has many subtle tributes to the iconic songs in the original animated version. Also, while this film is not a musical, for those of you who loved the original songs, be sure to get the soundtrack, sung by Christina Aguilera.

Along with the warriors' credo to always be loyal, brave, and true, Mulan emphasizes the importance of family and demonstrates girl power. This movie has some scary elements and has several violent fight scenes.

I give Mulan 4 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 11 to 18. Adults will enjoy it, too. Mulan is currently available on Disney+. (It will be free to Disney+ subscribers on December 4th, 2020.)

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD AGES 2-5
Description - Re-imagined for a new generation, Nickelodeon's all-new version of '90's kids' cult classic Are You Afraid of the Dark?'s three-part limited series follows members of an entirely new Midnight Society, who tell a terrifying tale of the Carnival of Doom and its evil ringmaster Mr. Top Hat, only to witness the shocking story come frightfully to life and prepare for an adventure beyond their wildest nightmares. The new members of the Midnight Society are: Rachel, played by Lyliana Wray; Gavin, played by Sam Ashe Arnold; Akiko, played by Miya Cech; Graham, played by Jeremy Taylor; and Louise, played by Tamara Smart. The Carnival of Doom's ringmaster, Mr. Tophat, is played by Rafael Casal (Blindspotting). Includes three episodes.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - "The outside world is dull and dreary," so the TV series Are You Afraid of the Dark? will surely give you the "thrills and chills" you have been waiting for. From creepy clowns to evil music, this show will give you a fright. Not in the in-your-face kind of way but in a more sinister way. You may never bat an eye, but you will feel at least a cold shiver down your spine from time to time. But don't you worry! You are safe at home on your couch because everything you see is "all part of the show."

What starts off as a typical high school show with the new girl in town, turns into one where she is invited to the middle of the woods by the Midnight Society to tell the scariest story she can. After she tells the tale of Mr. Tophat and the Carnival of Doom, things get even spookier when they start to come true. Right from the start, daunting violins and accordions are played in a lifeless forest with laughing children in the background and scorpions in the air. Then you are asked... "Are You Afraid of the Dark?" A match is lit under it and the forbidding title sequence slowly turns dark. This is an excellent way of teasing this show, and I absolutely love the vibe.

Are You Afraid of the Dark? takes classic horror elements and redoes it well. The earthy music, airy and watery, mixed with the violin and accordion sprinkled with some laughter makes for a creepy juxtaposition of mood.

Throughout the series, we are taken on a rollercoaster of doubt, as plot twists are everywhere. Some of the shots are very well done, like when each kid gets the flyer for The Carnival of Doom and the camera cuts to each person's fearful eyes. There is also the scene where Rachel (Lyliana Wray) and Gavin (Sam Ashe Arnold) are attacked in a carnival ride and the lights are flashing to add uncertainty.

My one piece of criticism for this show is that the end feels a bit rushed. Unlike the classic series in which each episode is a different story, this version of the series builds up a lot of tension throughout the episodes and doesn't leave quite enough room for answers to be revealed at the end. But I have to credit Are You Afraid of the Dark? as it has high production values and has epic moments that we usually only see in action movie-- such as when the kids walk away from cars with the headlights on and rock music blares in the background.

Are You Afraid of the Dark? has some content that may cause young kids to feel squeamish, especially if they are afraid of bugs. Friendship is a big component of this show even if it might not seem like it at first. We are presented with a question: would you rather have all the materialistic wealth in the world or simply have good friends by your side? And this show promotes the idea of having a close group of friends.

I rate this series 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 11 to 18. Are You Afraid of the Dark? is available on DVD on Tuesday, August 11, 2020, and includes three fan favorite episodes from the original series in English, French and Spanish.

Reviewed by Anokhi L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17
Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 11.99 Media: CDROM

Series: TV SERIES, AGES 10-18
Description - In "Upside-Down Magic, a Disney Channel Original Movie, 13-year-old Nory Boxwood Horace discovers she can flux into animals, and her best friend Reina Carvajal can manipulate flames. Together, they enter the Sage Academy for Magical Studies. Reina's expert ability to harness the power of fire lands her at the top of her class of "Flares," but Nory's wonky magic and proclivity for turning into a "Dritten"-a half-kitten, half-dragon-lands her in a class for those with Upside-Down Magic, otherwise known as UDM. While Headmaster Knightslinger believes the UDM's unconventional powers leave them vulnerable to dangerous and evil "shadow magic," Nory and her fellow UDM classmates set out to prove that Upside-Down Magic beats right side up
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This adventurous movie Upside Down Magic is about a girl named Nory and her friend Reina, who are accepted to the Sage Academy for Magical Studies (think Hogwarts from Harry Potter meets Auradon Prep from Descendants). And no wands at this school for sorcery--all the magic comes from within. Plus there are five different schools of magic for Flyers, Flickers, Floaters, Flares and Fluxers. Nory is a Fluxer which means she can shape-shift into animals, but, during her first-day demonstrations of her powers, Nory's not-so-perfect magic turns her into a "Dritten" (a half-kitten, half-dragon) that puts her into a class for the kids with "wonky" (or broken magic) called "upside down magic" also known as UDM. Nory's BFF Reina is a Flare which means she can create heat or fire or sparks from her hand. Reina has amazing abilities, but is tempted to make her powers even stronger when she comes across a book of Shadow Magic, a type of dark black magic that can turn you from good to evil.

Throughout the movie, Nory is convinced that the UDM's can be just as powerful as the rest of the school and, with the help of her teacher Scriff, all the UDM kids learn how to focus to turn their upside down magic...into right side up magic, even if it's not quite perfect.

Like most Disney Channel movies, this is fun, colorful, and full of unique characters. But...not a lot of singing in this one, surprisingly. And I can't spoil from whom and when the singing does come--you'll need to see the movie to find out! It is a little dark and scary at times, but the scariest moments come towards the end of the movie. Otherwise it's full of comedy, friendship, and, of course, lots of magic!

The messages of this film are to sometimes let kids be kids and also to never give up on what you believe you can achieve. Nory wants to be an official Flexer so bad but gets put into UDM. Yet does she settle and give up? Well, you'll have to watch to find out. (Wink.)

If you love movies like the Harry Potter series or Disney's Descendants, then you'll love Upside Down Magic. I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to18 and adults will absolutely love it too. Upside Down Magic debuts on Disney Channel on July 31, 2020. Don't miss it.

By Lindalee R., KIDS First! Film Critic, Age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV

Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-13
Description - When a musical dragon with a beautiful voice hypnotizes the dragons and people of Huttsgalor, the Rescue Riders have to find a way to break the spell.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I really enjoyed this new, exciting film, Dragons: Rescue Riders: Secrets of the Songwing! The cast and animation are incredible!

The story follows Melodia (Ren�e Elise Goldberry), a songwing dragon who tries to hypnotize the town of Hudsgalore with her beautiful singing voice. When Aggro (Marsai Martin) and Zeppla (Cassidy Naber) are hypnotized, the dragon gang have to help stop Melodia's song. To the rescue come Winger (Zach Callison), Summer (Skai Jackson), Burple (Noah Bently) and Cutter (Andre Robinson) as they save their friends and the rest of the town of Hudsgalore. Alongside the dragons are brother and sister Dak (Nicolas Cantu) and Leyla (Brennley Brown) in this musical special that fans of Dragons: Rescue Riders will love.

The animation in this musical special is excellent, although there are some parts where the sound seemed that it was out of sync with the character's mouths a few times during the film.

The message of the story is that you shouldn't use one of your best qualities -- such as the gift of being able to sing like Melodia can -- to trance everyone else and make them do what you want.

I recommend Dragons: Rescue Riders: Secrets of the Songwing for ages 4-13, but it is a family-friendly film so adults will also enjoy it. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars as it is very enjoyable. You can find this film on Netflix on July 24th. Dragons: Rescue Riders: Secrets of the Songwing is definitely worth the watch!

Reviewed by Katie F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Using interviews and rare archival footage, JOHN LEWIS: GOOD TROUBLE chronicles Lewis' 60-plus years of social activism and legislative action on civil rights, voting rights, gun control, health-care reform and immigration. Using present-day interviews with Lewis, now 79 years old, Porter explores his childhood experiences, his inspiring family and his fateful meeting with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1957. In addition to her interviews with Lewis and his family, Porter's primarily cin�ma verit� film also includes interviews with political leaders, Congressional colleagues, and other people who figure prominently in his life.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - There is an old African proverb: "When you pray, you move your feet." The proverb resonates powerfully in this quote from John Lewis' memoir, Walking in the Wind: "As a nation if we care for the beloved community, we must move our feet, our hands, our hearts, our resources to build and not tear down, to reconcile and not to divide, to love and not to hate, to heal and not to kill. In the final analysis, we are one people, one family, one house, the American house, the American family."

John Lewis is a powerful writer. I read Walking in the Wind several years ago, and it had a powerful impact on me. John Lewis: Good Trouble, the documentary, makes that same powerful impact: it brings his story to life! As in his memoir, the film reveals the man behind the legend.

I was moved to tears by the footage from the 1960s. I was beginning my teenage years back in 1963. Television was still a young medium, and it showed us all that was going on in the world daily. I was learning about the world and its ways in the '60s--the injustices, the fight for dignity, freedom, equality and decency. These were my middle school years, my high school years, formative years brought back to life as I watched this film.

History repeats itself until we learn. John Lewis: Good Trouble follows John Lewis throughout his young life in Alabama, working on his parent's farm, feeding chickens, picking cotton. Mr. Lewis' narration of waking up early, hiding under the porch to wait for the school bus, running onto the bus to get to school to his wonderful teachers where he says he read everything, is a powerful visual image. I love what one of his sisters says about John wearing a tie and carrying the Bible to school every day. John was a serious student. He wanted more in his life. Clearly, he wanted to make a difference in our country for racial justice for African American people. His tireless work and dedication started as a college student. From SNCC leader to Congressman from Georgia, John Lewis fought the good fight for voter's rights, for civil rights, for the right to eat at the same restaurant as white people, for integration, not segregation. His marches, his belief in nonviolence and commitment to the cause have continued for 65 years.

One story that Henry Gates Jr. tells about John Lewis' great-great grandfather getting his voting card back in the 1800s has a powerful twist. So many stories, so much history where he worked so hard from the time of Dr. Martin Luther King to President Barack Obama to now!

This inspirational documentary is a must see. John Lewis: Good Trouble weaves an important story about an exceptional man, shows us our history from the '60s to today, and demonstrates the part John Lewis played, and continues to play, as the fight for racial justice and equality is at a pivotal moment in time with the Black Lives Matter movement.

I give John Lewis: Good Trouble 5 out of 5 stars and highly recommend it for 9 to 18 year olds to learn about an effective leader and his plight - and to understand even further the times we are currently living through. I also recommend it to adults, to remember all that has transpired through the years, to reflect and act on how we can all move forward once and for all to make the change that is way long overdue. It will be released July 3, 2020 on Apple TV.

Reviewed by Terry S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The documentary John Lewis: Good Trouble delivers an extremely powerful message. It shows the heroism and courageousness of civil rights leader Congressman John Lewis, as well as many other African American people in this country. Subjects such as civil rights and equality for all races should be better discussed in this nation and, truly, always should have been, and now is the time to put these long-existing issues with racism to rest. John Lewis: Good Trouble encapsulated this moving lesson by telling the Congressman's story and what motivated him to take action.

John Lewis: Good Trouble is about the experiences he had and changes that occurred in his life. It discusses the racial segregation that existed for a very long time and how so many people spoke out against it. The film demonstrates how people aimed -- and still are aiming -- to resolve racial issues in America. Civil rights are an essential part of every government, and this documentary shows these racial inequalities through the life and actions of John Lewis. It communicates these important actions across the timeline of his life, interspersed with many interviews with people that know the Congressman--this gives the perspective of many individuals and shows how he has impacted them.

My favorite part of John Lewis: Good Trouble also happens to be the camerawork. Despite the fact that there is constant movement, the shots remain smooth and crisp in quality. Not all documentaries have the greatest camera operation, so it is nice to see the effort made to bring quality to the viewer's eyes. It makes watching the film more enjoyable for anyone.

The message of this documentary is that speaking up about issues yet to be solved can make others feel driven to help make a change. John Lewis: Good Trouble is definitely successful in portraying this message. Positive social behavior is promoted, and people treat each other appropriately. There isn't any bad language, either. Police brutality is discussed, and some footage of it shown, but nothing risky that children may imitate.

I give John Lewis: Good Trouble 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18 plus adults. It will be released on July 3, 2020.

By Ruby A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 6-16
Description - Bus, do your stuff! Field trips with Ms. Frizzle are wilder than ever, into space, over to the Galapagos Islands even a plunge into the depths of the Sun itself. And along the way, the kids we know and love bring their science investigations into the 21st century still taking chances, making mistakes and getting messy! Climb aboard for a field trip you will never forget.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - coming soon
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Magic School Bus Rides Again! Love this reboot of the magical series I grew up with. In our household Miss Frizzle can do no wrong as she makes learning complicated science lessons easily understandable and fun. I was worried that our family's all-time favorite learning series would be compromised in some way, but I'm happy to share that I can't wait to watch all the new episodes.

The Magic School Bus Rides Again starts with a new Miss Frizzle and a new school year in science class. Fortunately, we learn that Miss Frizzle is the younger sister of the original Miss Frizzle who is now Professor Frizzle, as she has been busy getting her Ph.D. and continues to be voiced by the incredible Lily Tomlin. Like classmate Arnold, I was nervous about accepting the new Miss Frizzle, but Kate McKinnon adds her voice and personality to her role as Miss Fiona Frizzle and we soon accept her as our new teacher. I say our because as a viewer you are pulled into the lessons being taught in each episode.

All of the original characters return in this series except for Phoebe who has moved and we are joined by a new classmate, Jyoti. The Blast Off! DVD contains four field trips and you will enjoy the new high-tech school bus and other updated gadgets in the new series which bring it into the 21st century. The animation is updated by animator Matthew DaSilva; you still recognize the characters and classroom, but it has a more modern feel and integrates well with the story. You just have to watch these episodes to see the other minor updates.

If you're new to the series, jump on the bus! The Magic School Bus Rides Again is such a fun way to learn, while being massively entertained. Each episode explores a science topic and the magic of the series is that it can take you forward or backward in time, place or size and alters your appearance in an effort to experience life as the subject you are studying.

The message of this series is to learn by taking chances and making mistakes and that is still as true today as when the original series aired. Kids learn through exploring the world around them and seeing how everything is interconnected. Miss Frizzle not only teaches us science but life lessons as well!

I rate this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 16 and, of course, adults will like it too as our family watched this incredible series together. This compilation is available now on Digital or DVD from NCircle Entertainment.

Reviewed by Selene W, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I was absolutely wowed with The Magic School Bus Rides Again Blast Off! This adventurous DVD collection kept me entertained, laughing and wanting more. You will ride along with crazy Ms. Frizzle and her lovable class on the adventure of a lifetime. 3...2...1 BLAST OFF!

The Magic School Bus Rides Again Blast Off is a collection of four episodes: Frizzle of the Future, Space Mission: Selfie, Ready, Set, Fail! and Making Magic. Each episode has a new, exciting field trip to watch and enjoy. In this series you will travel from space to the Galapagos Islands while learning lessons about failure, teamwork, getting messy and having fun while doing it all! The kids and teacher you know and love are back and better than ever, so hop on for an experience you'll never forget!

While watching this DVD, many details stuck out to me. To start, the theme song is sung by Lin-Manuel Miranda! Not to mention that Ms. Frizzle is voiced by Kate McKinnon. Talk about some serious star power. On the topic of Kate McKinnon, she makes a great Ms. Frizzle, as she gives the character the craziness and yet, calm attitude that makes her really come alive. She isn't the only voice actor that sticks out to me. Miles KV, as Arnold, conveys realistic emotion through his character by only using his voice. Even when listening, you can tell he is worried about Ms. Frizzle and her shenanigans. The animation in this show has a very interesting touch. While the character and objects remain cartoonish, the backgrounds look magnificently real, especially when the glass goes to space.

The message of this series is: if at first you don't succeed, try again. The kids learn this through trying to take the perfect space selfie, to getting a magical orb that seems to hold all of life's answers. While doing these things, they figure out that failure can be a good thing, because you can learn from mistakes. They also learn that with good teamwork and a positive mindset, anything is possible.

I give The Magic School Bus Rides Again Blast Off! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 7 to 14. This series can now be found on DVD and Digital.

By Allison Buck, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

Let me take on you on a field trip because today we are learning about the new children's DVD The Magic School Bus Rides Again Blast Off! This new DVD brings back the characters we all know and love and doesn't fail to bring back that hilarious, but educational feeling we get from these fifth graders and their wacky teacher! This DVD doesn't just deliver a flying school bus and a catchy theme song; it also delivers hilarious dialogue and creative adventures.

The Magic School Bus Rides Again Blast Off! follows the same group of students and teachers as the original 90s show The Magic School Bus. Once again, it captures the adventures that Ms. Frizzle (Kate McKinnon) takes her fifth grade class on. This DVD includes four wild adventurous episodes, including going into space and repairing near-by satellites, and flying over the Galapagos Islands.

As a fan of the original show, I was skeptical at first because remakes can sadly sometimes diminish the love for the original. The new show is a breath of fresh air and leaves you wanting more of these wild field trips. Kate McKinnon is the best possible actress for the role of Ms. Frizzle because of her overall humor and energy. What a perfect fit!

This show is educational and provides belly-laughing humor without sounding forced. Many morals are also provided as it teaches children about the importance of teamwork and friendship. Along the way, this show teaches children that mistakes are okay; the best thing about mistakes is that you can learn from them.

This DVD goes above and beyond the stars just like Ms. Frizzle and her class do and provides an educational, yet fun-loving show that all children can enjoy. I give The Magic School Bus Rides Again Blast Off! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 8. It's available on DVD or Digital now so look for it.

By Jude Adler, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

I like The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Blast Off! because this collection of four animated episodes is very adventurous. What makes the episodes interesting is the magic school bus that can turn into any size or shape, which is pretty amazing. I would love to ride on that with my classmates. If I could go on such a fun and educational field trip, that would be something else.

This series features a science teacher, named Ms. Frizzle (Kate McKinnon). The older Ms. Frizzle (Lily Tomlin) is now a professor, so her sister (also named Ms. Frizzle, of course) takes over teaching the science class. In one episode, a student named Arnold (Miles KV) doesn't like the new Ms. Frizzle, so he takes her special plant and puts it on a turtle. When the plant falls, it turns into a huge problem when they go into the future. Another episode focuses on a girl named Keesha (Mikaela Blake) who is really excited for space camp, so she tries to get a really cool photo for her application. This results in yet another adventure with Ms. Frizzle. She goes to outer space with her class. You'll have to watch this DVD to see how these adventures turn out.

My favorite part is when the class goes to the future and everything is very upgraded. I love how the students get to fly on discs to school, because I would really like to do that myself. My favorite character throughout the episodes is Dorothy Ann (Gabby Clarke); she is very smart and always has great ideas, which are good traits. I value learning things to become smarter and coming up with new and different ways of doing ways to solve problems.

The message of this DVD is to never give up. Sometimes you don't succeed right away, but it you stay at it you'll get there. When I can't do something I want to give up, but I know that if I keep trying I can get better at anything.

I give The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Blast Off! 5 out of 5 starts and recommended it for ages 4 to 12. This DVD is out now, so go look for it!

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11

The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Blast Off! DVD blends engaging science topics with a touch of magic. The new Ms. Frizzle dazzles us with her magical adventures and uplifting sprit that makes learning entertaining. This leaves viewers with a deeper understanding of science and a love for learning.

It's a new school year, and there's a new Ms. Frizzle (Kate McKinnon) driving the beloved Magic School Bus on engaging field trips while the old Ms. Frizzle (Lily Tomlin) travels the world as a professor. Most of the characters from the original series are back for new adventures including Arnold (Miles KV), Carlos (Leke Maceda- Rustecki), Dorothy Ann (Gabby Clarke) and others. There is also a new student, Jyoti (Birva Pandya). With the new Ms. Frizzle in charge of the class, Arnold is having trouble adapting to this new change in Episode One, "Frizzle of the Future." This leads to quite the adventure and a lesson in the effects of an invasive species in the Galapagos Islands. Episode Two, "Space Mission: Selfie," sends students into orbit to learn about satellites. "Ready, Set, Fail!" challenges students to create a rover for an exoplanet while learning that mistakes are a part of the learning process. "Making Magic" takes the school principal on a ride with the class to the sun. All the episodes are enjoyable and full of facts.

It's exciting to see the characters Ms. Frizzle and Arnold continue to delight viewers with their humor, love for science and quirky ways. Kate McKinnon and Miles KV truly bring their characters to life. My favorite episode is "Making Magic." During a surprise bus inspection the principal overhears them discussing a field trip to the sun and decides he wants to come along for the ride. Little does he know this field trip is not a simulation but, in fact, a real trip to the center of the sun! They need to get to the center of the sun to charge the bus and, along the way, lots of things go wrong. It doesn't help that they have to keep the principal from figuring out that all of this is real.

Each episode expertly delivers educational lessons on the topics of the environment, technology in space, engineering and the sun. At the same time, it teaches the importance of team work, problem solving and courage. These lessons are taught with humor, facts, and of course, magic which keeps the viewer entertained.

I give The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Blast Off! 5 out of 5 stars. It is full of interesting facts and makes learning fun. I recommend this series for ages 7 to 14. It is available on DVD and Digital now.

Reviewed by Carlee S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Runtime: 99 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 6-16 Suggested Retail Price: $ 7.99 Media: DVD

Description - A 12-year-old tech prodigy's science experiment goes awry and he forges a telepathic connection with his best friend, his dog. The duo join forces and use their unique perspectives on life to comically overcome complications of family and school.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like Think Like A Dog because it has an interesting story about a boy named Oliver (Gabriel Bateman) who can suddenly hear everything his dog is saying. It's funny to hear what his dog, Henry, has to say. I always wonder what dogs think, so it is fun to find out what Oliver's dog has to say to him. I like everything about this film.

The storyline follows Oliver working on his science fair project. His friend from China, Xiao (Minghao Hou), gives Oliver an upgrade for his science project and, the next day, Oliver can hear everything his dog Henry is saying. Henry helps Oliver deal with his family. His parents, Lukas (Josh Duhamel) and Ellen (Megan Fox) are thinking of splitting up and selling their house and Oliver doesn't know about this until Henry tells him and he confronts his parents. There's a bit of a twist when it comes to Mr. Mills (Kunal Nayyar), who judges the science fair. He turns out to be totally different than what I originally thought. He wants to be the most famous scientist in the world, but you have to watch the film to see if he's successful, and whether Henry and Oliver save the day.

The characters in this film are super funny. The actors really portray their characters well. Oliver (Gabriel Bateman) plays a very believable smart, but shy guy. And Henry, his furry friend, is probably the funniest character in the movie. I wish he were my pet! The camerawork by Giles Nuttgens are flawless; it really seems as if you're in the same room as the characters. My favorite part of the film is when Oliver asks a girl named Sophie (Madison Horcher) to the school dance. I won't give away whether or not she says yes, but it's cute how nervous Oliver appears, and how much he needs his dog to help him get the courage to ask her.

The message of the film is to trust yourself and your dog's instincts. Surprisingly, your dog might know what's best for you more than you do. Even if your dog can't talk, it can still make you happier - and possibly save your life. I don't have a dog yet, but I am always begging my mom for one.

I give Think Like A Dog 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 17, plus adults. This film premieres on digital, On Demand, Blue-ray and DVD June 9, 2020.

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-15
Description - Jibanyan, Whisper, and Nate travel back in time where they team up with a heroic Yo-kai named Hovernyan and Nate's adolescent grandfather to stop an evil Yo-kai from taking over the world! Together, they fight Dame Dedtime and her evil Wicked Yo-kai minions to save the world from her evil plans. Can they discover the secret origin of the Yo-kai Watch and save humanity before time runs out!?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Although I'm not an anime fan, Yo-Kai Watch: The Movie definitely held my interest. The cute Yo-kai and Nate keep me engaged and curious to know what their next actions would be.

The film is centered around Nate Adams, his grandfather and their Yo-Kai. The movie begins in Nate's home town, Springdale, where suddenly things become enlarged. Megnnyan is enlarging everything and tells Nate that the world is in trouble. Confused, Nate goes to his Grandma's house where a Yo-kai leads him to Hovernyan who tells Nate that they must go back in time to find his Grandpa and his Yo-kai Watch, so they can fight the Wicked who are trying to destroy everything.

The script creates a story full of events and exciting fight scenes, which are the main focus of the film. By creating bizarre scenes of enlarging things at the beginning, the screenwriter catches the viewers' eyes early on. Subsequent events are fast-paced, so presumably, young viewers will not get bored. Nevertheless, the story with "good fighting evil" brings little innovation to the table and renders predictable results. Moreover, a few minor details are not carefully planned for consistency. For example, Nathaniel hesitates helping his friends in the factory, but at the beginning of the movie he saves Nate without hesitation.

My favorite part is the ending when all of the Yo-kai combine their powers to fight the Wicked. Whisper is my favorite character; the actions and his dialogue are hilarious. In one scene, Whisper is flying around trying to find Master Yada who is standing right in front of him. One thing that stands out is the animation, which is some of the best anime that I have seen. The scenery and characters are very detailed and colorful and the action scenes are high-octane, with well matched background music.

Yo-Kai Watch: The Movie definitely meets the KIDS FIRST! criteria. I give it 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 11. Since fighting scenes in films were my favorites as a young boy, I think boys would prefer this over girls. The primary message is that when people work together as a team, they can overcome many obstacles and achieve almost anything. This is a very positive and powerful message for the film's target audience.

Reviewed by Justin Y., KIDS FIRST! reviewer
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Yo-Kai Watch: The Movie is such an entertaining film. I really like it. First off, the animation is out of this world. The animation has an intriguing aspect to it. Moreover, there is a large amount of imagination in this film. One can only wish that creatures like the ones in this movie really existed. Also, meaningful stories are always good to see and this one is definitely that.

Nate Adams (Johnny Yong Bosch) is "the chosen one" in this film. There are magical creatures called Yo-Kai and only Nate can see them. In this story the bad Yo-Kai are up to no good, so Nate and his friends team up against them. This is a good plot, although a bit typical. However, this story has some unique and interesting twists to it, with some humor mixed in as well.

As Nate and his friends unite, they make some puns that will surely get a smile from the audience. The effects in this film are so colorful and they really stick out. Furthermore, I love how each Yo-Kai is unique. Humans can relate in a way, since no two humans are exactly the same. In addition, plot twists really develop the storyline and make it even more interesting. One of my favorite characters is Whisper, one of the Yo-Kai. He is silly, but very friendly and loves helping. The best part of this film is the battle between Nate and his friends and the bad Yo-Kai. There is so much action that, if you blink, you might miss something of importance. Yo-Kai Watch: The Movie does not fail to keep your attention.

This film has many messages about friendship, teamwork and perseverance. We see the characters learn about teamwork and how essential friendship and determination are. The mood if this movie is hopeful.

I give Yo-Kai Watch: The Movie 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 11. It is available on DVD now, so look for it.

By Ginebra Q., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I like Yo-Kai Watch: the Movie because it is very funny. The story line of this movie is quite unique. I like that this film is not a sequence of the Yo-Kai Watch TV show.

Yo-Kai Watch: the Movie captures the fun of one of the hottest Japanese video game and collectible toy brands in the world. This famous video game was created in 2013 and the show Yo-Kai Watch first aired in 2014. The show has three seasons and a total of 214 episodes.

Yo-Kai Watch: The Movie is about a boy named Nate and his grandfather who can see the Yo-kai. Yo-kai are mischievous creatures that become friends with Nate. Nate and Yo-kais Jibanyan and Whisper go back in time where they meet a heroic Yo-kai by the name of Hoveryan and Nate's grandfather when he was a kid. Together they take on evil Dame Dedtime, an old and ugly, evil lady and her evil Yo-kai minions. This DVD is approximately one hour and thirty-five minutes.

This show's animation is Japanese anime and is very neat and colorful. The graphics are amazing and the voice-overs fit each character. The graphics are similar to the TV show. My favorite scene is when Hovernyan saves Nate and his grandfather from Dame Dedtime who is trying to kill them for rescuing Jibanyan. It is cool to see someone fight a mob of bad Yo-kai and then save people after surviving a huge attack like that.

The moral of this movie is that having friends is a positive thing; everybody needs a friend. Nate's grandfather said he didn't need friends and yet, all the Yo-kai want to be his friend. When he needs help the most, the Yo-kai are there to catch him when he falls to help him.

I give Yo-Kai Watch: the Movie 5 out 5 stars and recommend it ages 6 to 18, plus adults. This movies is available on DVD now, so look for it. Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Runtime: 95 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-15 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: DVD

Series: SERIES, AGES 4-9
Description - A CGI-animated mystery-adventure children's television series inspired by Indian culture and customs. It debuted on Disney Junior channel the United States on March 20, 2020. Set in a fictional kingdom called Jalpur which resembles a late 19th Century India, the series follows the brave and resourceful girl Mira, a commoner who is appointed to the role of royal detective by the queen and travels throughout her kingdom to help royals and commoners alike. Joining Mira are her two mongoose sidekicks Mikku and Chikku.
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KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Chalo, chalo, let's go (!) solve a case with Mira and her friends! Mira, Royal Detective is so enchanting with its brilliant animation, authentic South Asian culture and positive messages.

Mira, Royal Detective is about a young girl, named Mira (Leela Ladnier), who lives in the mystical land of Jalpur (a fictional place based on India and the South Asia region). She is appointed by the queen as the official Royal Detective, and she's the first girl ever to have this position. We follow her while she solves mysteries with her best friends.

Mira, Royal Detective is fun to watch because she teaches us to solve our own mysteries. The animation is super beautiful, the colors are so vivid and the outfits are gorgeous! Every little thing in every nook and cranny is very detailed and the dancing and music is reflective of traditional Indian culture. The music is light-hearted, happy and very catchy. The cast, which is all South Asian, is outstanding. Leela Ladnier has an extraordinary voice for a kind, little girl like Mira. Karan Brar (Prince Veer) voices a perfect practical prince and Kamran Lucas (Prince Neel) has a "sweet inventor" tone to his voice. My favorite character is (of course) Mira because she is so charming, but Mikku and Chikku are also memorable characters because these snack-loving mongooses are both funny and adorable.

There are many positive messages throughout the show, including never give up, pay attention to the little things, girl power and always lend a helping hand to a friend in need. Since Mira depicts a strong female character in a traditional male role, she serves as a good role model as well. Every character is kind to one another and inspires each other, including the audience.

I give Mira, Royal Detective 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 9. This show is available to watch now on Disney Jr.

Reviewed by Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 4-9 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV

Description - Every living being, from honey bees to humans, needs a safe place to call home. Dana's seventh album explores the different places animals live. Featuring numerous musical genres, the songs are designed to educate and entertain children while planting seeds of care for the planet we all call home.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Dana's hot off the press new album called A Place to Call Home is a breath of fresh air and a warm musical hug that inspires and requires multiple listenings. The songwriting, performances, production and various musical genres lend energy to this album that is truly infectious whether your home is where your heart is or in sweet home Alabama or even at home on the range along with a myriad of animals. A Place to Call Home shares a covering of love and acceptance with a batch of nifty crafted terrific tunes with perfect timing from a true professional.

A Place to Call Home is hip, happening and has energy to burn. Terrific arrangements and clever songwriting! Dana is a tried and true trooper and knows her audience extremely well so yes, I highly recommend.

There is a strong theme about animals and their habitats/homes that is lovingly presented. The production quality is excellent, executed by professionals. I love how it makes children aware that they can become difference makers in the global sense. Once again this pro knows her audience and loves what she's doing. She talks up to kids not down. Experience counts, especially from those who have toured and performed for live performances. Clearly Dana knows what works.

I can't say enough about Dana's spot-on vocals and the production value throughout this project. The different musical styles give the album a true World Music vibe. Teachers will have fun breaking down the animal and their habitats' segments for reports and activities with the kids.

I recommend A Place to Call Home for ages 5 to 8 and give it 5 out of 5 stars.

Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Music Specialist.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like A Place to Call Home it is a very interesting musical CD. I like the fact that it has a variety of melodies and music genres, plus I like how the songs pumps my adrenaline and some songs are so slow that they calm me down.

This CD is produced by EJ Ouellete and all the songs belongs to singer, Dana Cohenour. Dana Cohenour is widely recognized as one of the pioneers of independent children's music. She is named as on of the "Top Five Kids' Singers You Should Know." Her six albums for kids have won 22 National Awards so far. Her music is very contagious and enthusiastic. On this CD, in particular, you can listen to different music genres such as dance music, rock and roll, jazz, country and ballad among other music genres. This CD has 11 songs and each song has a different message of how to take care of our planet, the animals and how to build things in order to give animals shelter or protect them. Each song has approximately a duration of four to five minutes.

My favorite song is "Animal Hide and Seek" because this song is about animals hiding in their own habitat, such as bees hiding in a hive and cows hiding in a barn. Dana finds the animals and describes in her song how and where she finds them with a very adventurous lyric and country music rhythm that makes you want to stand up and dance.

The moral of this DVD is to help the environment around you, like helping animals when they are in need. Besides the environment, we need to take care of animals with whom we share the planet Earth. We need to remember to be kind to the animals and to our beautiful planet because this amazing place is what we all call home.

I give A Place to Call Home 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 4 to 18. Adults can enjoy this CD as well. For example, if you are going on a long trip with your family, this CD would be delightful and entertaining to listen to and to sing along to the catchy songs. This CD is available now at iTunes and elsewhere, so look for it!

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

I truly enjoyed listening to the CD A Place to Call Home. These songs will make you laugh and smile while learning about topics such as migration and beaver teamwork! You will not regret listening to this sweet album along with your children.

A Place to Call Home includes songs that teach about different aspects of animal life while giving you fun beats and rhythms to jam along with. Dana's seventh recording explores the different places animals live - in the sky and sea, in wetlands, underground tunnels and more. From learning about the crazy crowded world for the animals that go underground to how every animal needs a place to call home, you will be entertained with this new CD.

This CD offers 11 songs, including A Place to Call Home, Underground Traffic Jam, Migration, Let's Build a Dam, Rainforest Symphony, Honey Bee Bee Bop, Bluebird, Dog on My Head, Movin' Day, Animal Hide and Seek and Home. Each song explores a unique view about ways animals live and what they do. Even though you learn a lot from this album, I like that this CD informs about animals and their ways of life without forcing the facts on the listener. I know that kids listening to this will learn a lot, while enjoying the music. I find it truly amazing that Dana, the woman who writes and sings all of these songs, has so much creativity with her variety of songs. The genres range from rock to pop to jazz! Not to mention, Dana has such beautiful vocals and a very soothing voice. She isn't the only talented one on the team though, the bassist and guitarist, EJ Ouellette, has an amazing sound as well. His playing is clear and clean.

This CD helps young people learn about animal lives and how their lives might be similar to our own. In the end, we are all creatures on Earth and we all can have crazy and busy lives, so that is why it is so special to have a place to call your own where you feel comfortable and safe.

I give A Place to Call Home 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 4 to 11. This CD can be found online on June 6, 2020.

Reviewed by Allison B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Runtime: 40 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 12 Media: AUDIO

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - A superstar singer and her overworked personal assistant are presented with a choice that could alter the course of their respective careers.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This musical romantic comedy/dramatic film shines a light on someone who is normally in the dark. There are many plot twists which kept me intrigued the whole time. The original songs in the film also kept me watching because they sound incredible.

The film focuses on the life of Maggie Sherwood, personal assistant to superstar Grace Davis. Maggie is amazing at her job and loves working for such a successful person in the music industry, but her dream job is to be a music producer. Her goal is to produce another hit song for Grace Davis and help her overcome the stigma of being an older woman of color in the music industry.

Tracee Ellis Ross plays Grace Davis and perfectly does so. She fully embodies the persona of an accomplished superstar and her vocals are always on point. Ross also adds a lot of comedic elements to the film. Dakota Johnson is an accomplished actress so it comes as no surprise that she is able to pull off many of the difficult scenes as Maggie Sherwood. Johnson is able to convey Maggie's determination and feelings of ambition to the audience.

The costumes are absolutely beautiful. Naturally as a superstar, Grace Davis has to present herself in the best way possible and she does not disappoint. The locations where this is shot are breathtaking as well. They beautifully capture the views and beauty of Los Angeles.

Describing my favorite scene would spoil the movie, so all I can say is that I really love how inspiring this film is. It accurately depicts the life of musicians living in LA and seeing a story like this will inspire many to go for their dreams, despite all the odds that may be against you.

There are multiple messages within this film. One of them is to go for your dreams despite the risks. The film shows that you need to be able to take risks and work hard to reach your goals. Even if you do encounter a setback, all that matters is that you keep getting back up and getting right back to work. Another message is to do what you want to do, even if others are against you. Grace Davis is an older woman of color in the music industry and, because of this, people try to shove her into a category and tell her what to do. But Grace has no intention of retiring anytime soon.

I love this film and the messages it conveys. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults. It comes out on Video on Demand May 29, 2020, so make sure you look for it!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

SCOOB! (2020)
Series: FEATURE, AGES 7-18
Description - Scooby-Doo is the hero of his own story in "SCOOB!," the first full-length, theatrical animated Scooby-Doo adventure, which reveals how he and his best friend Shaggy became two of the world's most beloved crime busters. The story takes us back to where it all began, when a young Scooby and Shaggy first meet, and team up with Velma, Daphne, and Fred to launch Mystery Incorporated.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Grab your Scooby Snacks and get ready for a Scoob-tasic adventure. Zoinks, this movie is terrific! The storyline is creative and entertaining and there is wonderful character development that is unique to this movie versus the cartoon episodes we all grew up with.

Scoob! is about the never-before-heard origin of the Mystery Inc. gang and how Shaggy (Will Forte) and Scooby Doo (Frank Welker) met. After a montage of solving mysteries, we see the gang wanting to expand and we get to follow them on their biggest mystery yet. Only their friendship can save them.

I LOVE The Scooby Doo Franchise! And Scoob! is no exception. I remember watching the show and wondering how the Mystery Inc. gang got together. And now, in Scoob! we finally learn the answer. The animation is super vivid and creative. Everywhere you look, there is an "Easter Egg." For example, the names of streets and stores are names of people associated with Hanna-Barbera. The cast includes children of some of the adult actors. The characters' voices are cast to perfection. Frank Welker has a fantastic snack-loving dog voice and has been the voice of Scooby Doo for nearly 20 years. Will Forte has a hilarious hippy voice; Amanda Seyfried (Daphne) has a magnificent, kind and caring tone in her voice; and Gina Rodriguez (Velma) has an excellent voice portraying wit, intelligence and quite a bit of sarcasm. My favorite character is (SURPRISE) Scooby, because he is such a sweet dog and, as Frank Welker says, "When he talks, I'm not even sure I am listening to a dog talking like a human, or a human talking like a dog." I agree. But a close second is the villain of the movie (no spoiler here) because his name, his voice and his appearance are just perfect for a bad guy.

The key message of this movie is about the power of friendship. This movie has mild bad language and some magic scenes that may be scary for a younger audience.

Jinkies, I give Scoob! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18. Adults will love this as well. Scoob! is available online May 15, 2020. #SCOOBMOVIENIGHT

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

SCOOB! is a hilarious, action-packed and adventurous animated movie based on the original Scooby Doo cartoon. This movie is a cool, updated version and includes cell phones and references to some of the current stores, such as IKEA and Wal-Mart. There are so many funny scenes in this movie that the whole family will love.

In SCOOB!, the entire Mystery Inc. team from Scooby Doo returns to solve more mysteries. We learn how Shaggy, Scooby, Velma, Daphne and Fred originally met one Halloween night. The team then goes on several adventures while trying to solve mysteries. Their biggest mission is when Velma, Daphne and Fred find out that Shaggy and Scooby are missing, and they go on a quest to find their lost friends. They need to stop the villain, Dick Dastardly (Jason Isaacs), from capturing Scooby and using him to open up the gates so he can steal the treasure of the underworld.

The lead characters are Shaggy (Will Forte), Scooby (Frank Welker), Velma (Gina Rodriguez), Daphne (Amanda Seyfried) and Fred (Zac Efron). It was interesting to learn what role each of them had in the group. For example, Velma is the "brains" of the team. The costumes are amazing and spot on to the originals. Scooby even gets an upgrade and gets to wear a great superhero costume in the movie. There is a lot of great music from different eras and it takes place in Venice, California. It is really clever that the movie starts with Dr. Dre and Tupac's song, "California Love." The special effects are realistic and make you feel as if you are in the movie. One of the coolest parts of the movie is when other Hanna Barbara characters such as, Blue Falcon (Mark Wahlberg), Dynomutt (Ken Jeong) and Dee Dee Sykes (Kiersey Clemmons) show up to help save Shaggy and Scooby. A great surprise is when American Idol's, Simon Cowell (Simon Cowell) appears in the movie. I love how current events are used in the movie, especially the joke they include about how Simon is responsible for giving the world Kelly Clarkson.

The message in SCOOB! is all about friendship. The cast uses the phrase "friendship saves the day" throughout the film. Anytime the Mystery Inc. team needs to solve a case, they do it together. This movie is PG and, even though there isn't a lot for parents to look out for, there are two scenes that could be mistaken for inappropriate language.

SCOOB! is PAW-tastic and a film you definitely want to see. You may even find yourself dancing while watching it. I rate it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids 5 to 18. Adults will love it too. This movie is available on video on demand now, so grab your Scooby Snacks and order it today!

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

Fire up your Mystery Machine and head to your home theater to watch the new Scooby snack-eating, ghost-catching and hilarious new film, Scoob! Scoob! brings much more to the table then huge sandwiches and Scooby snacks, it also brings amazing characterization and belly-laughing humor. The film has outstanding animation, but some parts look a little bit off and need a little more detail. The movie brings back that nostalgic feel we all know and love, and makes the movie feel somewhat like another episode of some ghost-catching, meddling kids.

Scoob! starts off with a young, lonely Shaggy Rodgers (Iain Armitage) when he runs into a stray puppy and names it Scooby-Doo. From that day forth we get the amazing dog and man duo that forms Mystery Inc! The movie cuts to about 20 years later to see the full-grown meddling kids we all know and love, Shaggy (Will Forte), Scooby (Frank Welker), Daphne (Amada Seyfried), Velma (Gina Rodriguez), and Fred (Zac Efron). One day, Scooby and Shaggy are attacked by scorpion-looking robots and have to team up with the local superhero, Blue Falcon (Mark Wahlberg) to find the culprit responsible for these menacing attacks! This movie is an emotional rollercoaster filled with twists and turns you never saw coming!

There are many Scooby-Doo movies out there and I personally think that they all kind of all are the same, but let me tell you, Scoob!is completely out of the Scooby snack-box and original. I have to give big props to director Tony Cervone for making a movie that is completely original and its own. Another obvious favorite of this movie is Scooby-Doo himself! Frank Welker's voice acting is spot on and captures everything we all love about our snack-eating dog, Scooby. The only weakness with this movie is the character design. The main characters are designed extremely well, however, the people in the background all have a generic look and seem the same, but with different hair and shirt pieces.

Scoob is rated PG, but it is very edgy for a PG rating. The film includes two mild curse words and a bunch of hilarious adult jokes that will go over many kids' heads. The film also has scorpion-looking robots that might be frightening to younger viewers and, in some scenes, the scorpions turn into little cute robots. The movie's main theme is friendship, so throughout the film, many morals are provided for teaching younger viewers.

Overall, the producers and directors really put the pedal to the metal of the Mystery Machine and provide an original, fun-loving Scooby-Doo story with great characterization and humor. Therefore, I give Scoob! 4 out of 5 stars and recommend this film for kids ages 4 to18. You can buy or rent Scoob! Digitally beginning May 15, 2020.

Reviewed by Jude A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

I like SCOOB! because it has an amazing mystery and the characters are really cute. It's cool that they have their own opinions about pretty much everything, yet are still good friends. This film is full of action and also has some touching scenes that that will make you feel emotional.

This animated film is about a gang that meets on Halloween when they are young and they solve their first mystery. Then they start solving mysteries all the time. When they grow up, they try to find an investor to support their mystery-solving business. Simon Cowell (Simon Cowell) meets the crew in a diner and says he won't give them any money if Shaggy (Will Forte) and Scooby-Doo (Frank Welker) are part of the business, since he believes a group is only as strong as its weakest link. Shaggy and Scooby go off bowling on their, but wind up getting chased by evil robots. They get transported to Blue Falcon's (Mark Wahlberg) ship and meet Dynomutt (Ken Jeong) and Dee Dee Sykes (Kiersey Clemons). The group gets chased by the robots who are controlled by Dick Dastardly (Jason Isaacs)--a bad guy that wants to take Scooby and open the gate to the underworld. You'll have to watch to see if Dick successfully opens the gate.

All the characters are so funny; each one has its own little personality. Fred (Zac Efron) isn't the smartest guy, but he's the cutest. Velma (Gina Rodriguez), on the other hand, is probably the smartest person ever. The group relies on each other to solve problems. To me, that's pretty cool. My favorite part is when Shaggy and Scooby sing "Shallow" to Simon Cowell. It is so funny because they are definitely not good singers. But I love it because "Shallow" is my favorite song.

The message of the film is to trust your friends. Even when they mess up, you should have their back. It kind of reminds me that sometimes I mess up and I want my friends to support me still.

I give SCOOB! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 12. I also think adults will like this film--especially if they used to watch the animated shows when they were kids. SCOOB! is available now online, so go look for it!

By Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 7-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE 12-18
Description - Exploring Natalie Wood's life and career through the unique perspective of her daughter, Natasha Gregson Wagner, and others who knew her best.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth review
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind is a wonderful biography telling the story of Natalie Wood's life in a raw way from the perspectives of multiple people. The film gets into lots of details and aspects of her life. By the end, the audience knows all about who Natalie Wood was.

The film is composed of old video and audio clips of Natalie Wood as well as multiple interviews, some of which are conducted by Wood's daughter, Natasha. The clips follow in somewhat of a chronological order, but the film doesn't start off at the beginning of her life. It covers details and facts about her entire life, but skips around, going to different parts. It focuses on her success as a child, her family's struggles, her love life, and the drama surrounding her death. The documentary also highlights all of her achievements in her film career.

The people featured in the documentary represent Natalie Wood's extensive circle of family and friends. Their interviews tell their perspectives of Natalie and her life. Included are her daughters, the family nanny, her husband and people who worked with her.

I thought it was interesting the way that they decided to skip around to different phases in her life. Normally documentaries pursue a chronological order, starting from the beginning and following through to the end. In contrast, this documentary is really effective in the way it skips around, because it gives the audience a bit of background information before returning to explain some aspect in deeper detail. I liked this because it allowed me to get a general idea first of what Natalie Wood was like and then what she experienced. I could see how people viewed her from the outside and then, the film delves deeper into a closer perspective by her friends and family.

My favorite parts are the home videos of Natalie Wood with her children. These clips make you realize that, even though she was under the pressure of the spotlight all the time and looks perfect, she is a human being with a life too.

The purpose of this documentary is to honor Natalie Wood and show people how great a life she lived. Some people focus more on the tragedy of her death and overlook her legacy in the film industry.

I loved watching and learning more about Natalie Wood's wonderful story. I give Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18. Even adults will enjoy learning from this documentary. Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind premieres on HBO May 5, 2020 so be sure to look for it!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 2-12
Description - The Octonauts are a team of adventurers who explore the world s oceans, rescue aquatic creatures and protect their habitats - from the bustling eco-system along the Amazon River to the deepest depths of the Mariana Trench. Deploying a set of aquatic vehicles, Captain Barnacles, daredevil ex-pirate, Kwazii, medic Peso and the rest of the crew embark on missions around the globe before returning safely to their home base, the Octopod. On this exciting DVD, join the Octonauts as they journey to the Midnight Zone to rescue a bomber worm! Come along with Dashi as she teams up with her sister, Koshi, so solve a mysterious disappearance. And when Shellington crashes the Gup-D, he and Kwazii team up to pick up the pieces. Enjoy these adventures and more with the Octonauts!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Octonauts Ocean Adventures is an exciting educational DVD that follows the adventures of a team of friends that explore the world's oceans. It is comprised of six colorful and fun episodes including titles such as Kelp Monster Mystery, The Loneliest Whale and Operation Cooperation. Follow the crew in this action-packed series as they explore mysterious ocean life, learn about and rescue curious sea creatures and teach us how to protect their environments and habitats. The team is lead by Captain Barnacles, the bravest polar bear you will ever meet and always the first to rush in and help whenever there is a problem to be solved. Other characters include Kwazii - the daredevil cat, Dr. Shellington - the coolest marine biologist sea otter around, Dash dog - a sweet natured IT officer and Tweak - a bunny who's ready to lend a helping hand. From their underwater Octopod, they are always ready for excitement and the challenges that await them in the deep blue sea. The DVD's run time is 66 minutes and includes menu options such as episode selection and comes with a colorful booklet with information about The Octonauts and other shows from NCircle Entertainment. This series is highly recommended for any child that enjoys colorful characters, fun songs, adventure and learning about the ocean and its creatures. I give Octonauts Ocean Adventures 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 through 10. It's available on DVD now, so check it out. Reviewed by Eli B, KIDS FIRST! Juror.

Octonauts: Ocean Adventures is a DVD collection of episodes from The Octonauts, a group of sea creatures lead by Captain Barnacles to go on exciting missions all across the world. This is a highly educational show, though this fact is hidden in many fun and informative adventures. Kids enjoy the mindful characters and upbeat music while learning a lot.

All the characters are engaging and interesting. They have good interpersonal relationships. The storylines oftentimes highlight problem solving-skills and thoughtful learning. The characters work together as a team, which is great modeling for kids to see. The animation has bright colors and backgrounds. The backgrounds make the film really interesting and fun to watch. The music is very catchy and any child who has heard it will recognize it immediately. It's definitely danceable for both preschoolers and young elementary school aged. The music is very much a highlight of the show.

Of course none of these stories would happen in real life, as it is a fictional cartoon. Captain Barnacles and Dashi are the most memorable characters in the series. They are mindful, personable characters. My favorite part is when they're surrounded by all the creatures that want to eat Little Jimmy and they try to fight off the creatures. They use the boat to get out and are followed to the main ship and then they turn on the lights. Captain Barnacles is a brave person and a true leader. He helps people when necessary, especially people in need. Always help people in need when you can is a prominent message in each episode. I learned all about bomber worms and how they use flares to defend themselves and signal their friends. They live in the middle of the trench because if they go to the bottom they can't swim back up and can easily die.

I give Octonauts: Ocean Adventures 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 9. It is available now on DVD so look for it.

By Hanna M., KIDS FIRST! Adult reviewer
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like the Octonauts: Ocean Adventures because the animation is so cute and the characters are super funny. It can get a little repetitive for older kids when you watch more than a couple episodes, but I think little kids would want to watch all six episodes on the DVD. I really like how each episode shows the actual animal, and not just the animated one. It allows viewers to get a better idea of what the animals looks like in real life.

This DVD has different episodes about a specific animal that lives in the ocean. The Octonauts, featuring Captain Barnacles, ex-pirate Kwazii (a cat) and medic Peso (a penguin) go on a bunch of adventures under the ocean. In one episode, the Octonauts help two very competitive shrimp that are fighting, become best friends. In another one, a confident polar bear goes underwater with Kwazii and Peso to talk to little worms they meet and look for one worm that sank to the bottom of the ocean. Other characters, like an otter, help Kwazii search for parts after their ship crashes to the bottom of the ocean. It's a very fun DVD because there is a lot of action and you always want to know what will happen next.

All of the characters have their own personality, such as the penguin, named Peso. Peso is very scared, but Kwazii (the cat) is not afraid of anything. I love how all of the characters are so different from one another. It reminds me of some of my friends who like different things than I do, or have a shy personality. Even though we are different, we still have fun together. My favorite part about this DVD is when Peso gets so scared of the huge "monster," but it's not quite a monster. You'll have to watch the DVD to find out what the creature actually is. I also like the blobfish who always wants food--especially worms--but is so slow he often misses out on a snack. That character is probably the funniest part of the DVD.

The message of this show is: if you work together, you can even save people's lives. It's amazing what you can do when you work together. Even if you different from one another, you can still use the strengths of each person in the group to be successful.

I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 9. This DVD is out now, so go look for it.

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

I was absolutely thrilled with the stories told in the DVD Octonauts: Ocean Adventures. This series of tales is full of twists and turns that will keep you engaged throughout the six action packed episodes. You will have tons of fun and learn valuable lessons along with the Octonauts, Captain Barnacles, ex-pirate Kwazii and medic Peso.

Octonauts: Ocean Adventures follows a team of underwater explorers that save ocean life and protect their habitats. The Octonauts help all animals and sea life ranging from the predatory mantis shrimp to the wiggly bomber worms. While doing this, the gang faces troubles such as transportation breaking down and fights between other animals. Even though the troubles seem tough, the Octonauts always manage to come through and learn skills to help them in life.

In this DVD, we are introduced to six episodes: Mantis Shrimp, Kelp Monster Mystery, Bomber Worms, Loneliest Whale, Operation Cooperation, and Spinner Dolphins. Each episode tells a unique story. I truly enjoyed each episode and did not get bored with any of them. The fun ocean setting captivated me, since there are so many things that are unknown about the ocean habitat. I was happily surprised when I heard the voices of all the characters. Instead of having high, cartoonish voices, the Octonauts voices are deep, and some even have accents. I particularly liked Captain Barnacles' English accent voiced by Ross Breen. That isn't the only audible thing I enjoyed. I was very entertained by the music. It sets a tone and makes situations seem much more relaxed, dire or whatever the mood may be. The clever theme music composer Darren Hendly is to thank for the catchy intro. Lastly, I really appreciate the animation style in this show. It is funny and adorable, without giving a fake impression of how these animals truly look.

The message behind these episodes is that, even when there are problems that seem tough and unsolvable, you can count on teamwork and kindness to always help you out. If we all help each other out, the problems can be fixed and you can gain important lessons from them.

I give Octonauts: Ocean Adventures 5 out of 5 stars and I recommend it to ages 6 to 12. This collection can be found on DVD and Digital now.

Reviewed by Allison B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

I am a big fan of the Octonauts series and this DVD is one of my favorites. It never gets boring and kept me looking forward to the next episode.

Octonauts: Ocean Adventures is about a team of under-the-sea adventurers. They explore, rescue and protect everything in the ocean. We follow them along many expeditions like cleaning the ocean and helping a lonely whale. Episodes include Mantis Shrimp, Operation Cooperation, Kelp Monster Mystery and more. The DVD runs about an hour, so it is the perfect amount of entertainment for a younger audience.

This is such an educational, yet fun DVD. I learned about animals that I had no idea even existed! Children will enjoy it, and so will others! It is great for the whole family to watch. The animation is simple, yet adorable, and the sea animals are darling. There are a lot of episodes in the Octonauts series and, just when you think that you have learned it all, NCircle Entertainment always throws more stuff at you to learn, and you're having a blast doing it. The characters' voices in Octonauts fit their personalities perfectly. Simon Greenall has a flawless, bold polar bear voice, Paul Panting plays a wonderful, gentle penguin and Bob Rackstraw voices a magnificent, dare-devil cat. My favorite episode is Bomber Worms because I learned about this animal for the first time and how interesting and unique they are.

There are many positive messages throughout the DVD including teamwork, friendship, being adventurous, and loving animals.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 through 9. This DVD is currently available.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

The Octonauts: Ocean Adventures is such a fun and educational DVD! It offers a good mix between learning about marine life and entertaining younger kids. This series will entertain kids for more than an hour while they explore the world's oceans.

Octonauts: Ocean Adventures is about a team of adventurers called the Octonauts that explore the world's oceans, rescue the creatures who live there and protect their habitats on land and sea. The DVD includes 6 episodes of fun, underwater adventures that teach kids all about the oceans and many of the animals that live there.

The protagonists in the movie are Captain Barnacles (Simon Greenall), Kwazii (Rob Rackstraw), an ex-pirate and a doctor named Peso (Wayne Grayson). Other animal friends show up on different episodes to join the Octonauts on their various quests. My favorite episode was The Loneliest Whale because I love how the Octonauts help the lonely whale, named Joe, find other whales and food. It is really heart-warming. The characters are all really nice, sweet, open-minded and have hearts of gold. While I love the main Octonauts, my favorite characters are Dashi and her little sister Koshi, because they work well together, have a great bond, love the same things and can relate and understand each other. The animation is so fun that it makes you feel like you are on missions with the Octonauts. The setting under the sea is really beautiful with neon colors that kids will love watching. It is really creative how everything the Octonauts use, such as the Octopod and the Gups, look like real animals.

This DVD encourages friendship, kindness and teamwork. The message across all episodes is that when you have kindness you can build great friendships and that teamwork is really important because it helps you get the job done faster. This movie has a G rating and there isn't anything parents need to be warned about.

Octonauts: Ocean Adventures is a great show for younger kids. Kids will definitely learn about the world's oceans, smarine life and how to be great friends and work together. I rate it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 2 to 8. This is out on DVD now, so make sure you go check it out.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
Runtime: 66 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD

Description - Join Jessica Harvey as she takes you to the coolest school on planet earth, the school of sharks. From the Tiger Shark - to the Bull Shark - to the Great Hammerhead, get ready for an educational experience you can really sink your teeth into!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - If you are looking for the "coolest school on the planet," well, look no further because I have found it! Shark School with Jessica Harvey offers the best instruction - marine style - right from your own home! The film's producer, George Schellenger takes you on an exciting journey into our oceans while providing us with some amazing lessons about a variety of shark species ranging in size from a few feet long to the length of an entire school bus. Scientist Jessica Harvey, the daughter of the legendary artist and Marine Biologist, Dr. Guy Harvey, adds such excitement as she narrates this film. The film's magnificent footage of some of our Earth's most precious oceanic creatures is sure to leave viewers wanting more instruction from this school!

Shark School with Jessica Harvey gives viewers a detailed education on over a dozen shark species living within our oceans. The narrators give a detailed explanation on the size, feeding patterns and special anatomical features of a variety of sharks occupying different marine habitats. From lateral lines, dermal denticles, to electroreceptors, each of these shark species are explained as being so unique. The film highlights how these characteristics are considered evolutionary advantages, yet sharks have become an addition to the threatened or endangered list due to over hunting and human consumption. With the alarming decline in shark population numbers, this film serves as a call to action that research, conservation, and preservation is much needed in order for man to save these species.

Hats off to the production and cinematography crew for showcasing such amazing creatures which inhabit our oceans. The up close footage of these amazing creatures shows how lively our marine environments are. The fact that the researchers can get that close to these majestic creatures and that there is somewhat of a mutual understanding between man and shark is what I like best in this film. Sharks appear to be underestimated by some, yet they are so critical for a balanced ecosystem.

The message well conveyed in Shark School with Jessica Harvey is about finding balance between man and nature. Sustainable seafood consumption and conservation are critical for our shark species. Shark diversity has been negatively impacted by man and if we don't make changes soon, we may never be able to recover from such an alarming decline in shark populations. Education is the key! If we aren't aware of a problem, we can't change it. This film makes people excited about our oceans and the creatures that call the oceans their home. This excitement may be the driving force that we desperately need to conserve what little we have within our ecosystems. There is great value to our sharks and this film has given me a new appreciation of these fish!

I give Shark School with Jessica Harvey 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 8 to 18. This is a perfect educational film for teachers, nature lovers and environmentalists. They will love it just as much as kids. This film can be rented or purchased now on Amazon. Check it out. This is a film that you do not want to miss!

Reviewed by Dominic D., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

Sharks are the scariest predators in the sea! That is why it is important to learn accurate information about them, which is what you can on the documentary Shark School with Jessica Harvey from the Guy Harvey Expeditions. Both the narrator and Jessica help the viewer understand facts about the different species of sharks.

This documentary is about many different sharks, but I will only be talking about a few. The first shark I want to talk about is the bull shark. Bull sharks can actually live in fresh water and, although most shark attacks are blamed on white sharks, they might have been from the bull shark. The bull shark also is one of the most dangerous sharks in the sea, mostly because of its strong quest for food.

One shark I found particularly interesting is the hammerhead shark. For one, since its eyes are located on each end of its head, the shark has a wide view. Did you know that hammerhead sharks can use their heads like a metal detector to find sting rays? Now, that's cool. Sadly the hammerhead shark is endangered; not only because of overfishing, but because people like to eat shark fin soup, which often comes from hammerhead sharks.

My favorite shark is the whale shark, which is as big as a bus. That is crazy! And, whale sharks don't eat normal shark food; they eat very small foods like plankton. They can reach up to 40 feet in length and they are the biggest fish in the ocean.

I give Shark School With Jessica Harvey 3 out 5 stars because I wish it had more information but it is still a great documentary and was fun to watch. I recommend this series for ages 10 to 15, plus adults. It is available on Amazon to rent or buy. Check it out.

Reviewed by SaniyaRain F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I like Shark School with Jessica Harvey because I learned about things I didn't know about sharks. Some parts were a little boring because there is a lot of information, but I really liked the scenes of sharks swimming in the water.

Shark School with Jessica Harvey teaches you bout different species of shark. For example, the whale shark is a shark that is about the size of a school bus. When I watched that part it made me want to be able to ride a bus to school. I learned that sharks have a dorsal fin on top and pectoral fins on their undersides. The caudal fin is the "tail" of the shark and helps them swim in the water. Sharks use gills to breathe and don't have bones. I didn't know much about sharks until I watched this film, so if you want to learn more, you have to watch it. I did know about the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation. Guy Harvey is Jessica's dad. I bought a necklace for my dance teacher that was designed by Guy, so it was very cool to learn more about his foundation and the information his daughter shares in the film.

I really like how the film breaks down the different types of sharks, step-by-step. It's very interesting learning all about the sharks and hearing what you can do to protect them. I like that the film shows real sharks swimming after showing illustrations of the different parts of the sharks. My favorite part of the film is when the hammerhead shark is talked about and shown. I've never seen a real shark before, so it was neat to see the odd-shaped head of the hammerhead. I was surprised to find out that it is considered to be a pretty friendly shark.

The message of the film is that sharks aren't necessarily scary. Before I watched this film, I was really scared of sharks, but learning more about them makes them less scary. Now I'm not afraid of sharks, although I don't know if I'd swim with them anytime soon--at least not without experts around me.

I give Shark School with Jessica Harvey 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 16, as well as some adults, especially if they are interested in learning more about sharks. Shark School with Jessica Harvey will be available on Amazon to rent or to buy sometime soon.

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Runtime: 25 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 9.99 Media: VIDEO

Series: DVD, AGES 2-8
Description - ROCKY, BILL, TINY and MAZU are four young dinosaurs growing up in the Cretaceous period. Life is always an adventure: new volcanoes are popping up all the time, long-necked brachiosauruses and enormous triceratopses roam free, meteor showers light up the night sky and the big bad Gigantosaurus reigns over it all! On this exciting DVD, join Rocky, Bill, Tiny and Mazu as they explore the world of Cretacia. Embark on a mission to help find a lost egg s missing parents. Join the four friends as they venture out on a sleepover at the lake and camp among the herds in the desert. The adventures don t end there! Race with Mazu to see a once-in-a-lifetime comet and join Bill as he becomes invisible during a game of hide and seek. Enjoy these adventures and more with our Dino pals!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Gigantosaurus: Dino Tales is an English dubbed collection of episodes from the titular French CGI-animated preschool series. Kids learning through early childhood education will find plenty of great messages and funny characters. Most of the episodes follow a repetitive structure, although there are a few standouts.

This anthology follows the adventures of Rocky (Dylan Schombling), Bill (Nicholas Holmes), Tinu (Aine Sunderland), and Mazu (Nahanni Mitchell) who are four young dinosaurs growing up in the Cretaceous period. Surrounding these tales is the overarching mysterious Gigantosaurus who helps them on a few adventures.

The four leads share great banter allowing for believable friendships. Keep in mind, they are all child actors who are slowly coming into their own. Dylan Schombling, as Rocky, is easily my favorite of the bunch overcompensating his masculinity towards his inner fears. His dynamic with Bill, voiced by Nicholas Holmes, is strongest with a touching episode addressing how he helps his friend face his fears. The dynamic between Tinu, Mazu and other pair-ups are not as strong, although Aine Sunderland and Nahanni Mitchell give charismatic performances.

The animation is easily the most impressive feature here. The character models appear swiftly, and the environments fully capture the Cretaceous aesthetic. I should point out that the episodic plots follow a similar pattern, and the characters lack distinct personalities, especially the antagonists who are always juvenile bullies. Granted this is a cartoon made for preschoolers, so this will not be as obvious to them as it is to an older viewer such as myself. "The Island" is the one episode that really stands out for me, featuring a touching plot about friendship as Bill helps Rocky face his fear of swimming.

The message of this film is to always value friendships. All four of the dinosaurs have a great dynamic that revolves around trust and teamwork. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 7. This DVD us available now on DVD and digital so check it out.

Reviewed by Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like the Gigantosaurus Dino Tales DVD because it is very entertaining and funny. This show amuses younger children as well as older children like myself.

This DVD is a compilation of eight funny episodes with each episode a duration of 11 minutes approximately. The episodes do not follow a sequence. Each one has its individual story line. This DVD is about four "dino" friends, named Rocky, Bill, Tiny and Mazu, who explore the world of Cretacia, where they live and make missions along the way. This show is very entertaining for young audience, keeping their attention their entire time.

The graphics are very bright and colorful. I especially like the jungle background. The voice-over talents suit each character. The music is appealing, especially the theme song. The episodes are short and interesting. My favorite episode is "Mazu's Comet," which is about Mazu wanting to see a comet with his name, because he is actually named after the comet. This is a special day for him because the comet only passes by every 100 hundred years. He makes a telescope, but the lens of the telescope breaks, so he scavenges to find a new lens in the desert. He only has a limited time to get back to the mountain to watch the comet. Finally, he finds the lens he needs but he gets distracted by another dinosaur in need of assistance and forgets all about the lens that he needs to see this special comet. He travels back without the lens and keeps helping more fellow dinosaurs along the way. When he finally arrives at the mountain he realizes that he forgot his lens. All the dinosaurs that Mazu helped along the way help him get his lens back and Mazu watches the comet successfully. My favorite character is Rocky because he is very adventurous dinosaur.

The moral of this DVD is that "teamwork makes the dream work," while having fun together. There is nothing like having a strong bond with our closest best friends to experience adventures together while exploring our surroundings or hometown.

I give Gigantosaurus Dino Tales DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 12, plus adults can watch this DVD with their children as well. This DVD is available now so look for it!

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

What I like about this DVD is seeing how all the characters of different types get along as great friends. I like how they work together as a team to solve problems. I also love the animation.

This DVD is a collection of episodes from the TV show by the same name. The story line is four young dinosaurs growing up in the Cretaceous period where there is a new adventure every day from volcanoes popping up, to meteor showers lighting up the night sky to all the various dinosaurs that you might run into at any time. The young dinosaurs, Rocky, Bill, Tiny and Mazu invite the audience to join them in their adventures.

What stands out in these animated episodes are the minute details of each dinosaur and the positive relationship between the four characters. The dinosaurs are very distinguished so that the viewer can determine their various types. The lead character Rocky pretends to be very brave, but his friend assures him that it's okay to have fears. The character Bill shows his loyalty as a friend. Mazu and Tiny are committed to their friendship. It's also fun that the dinosaurs have human-like qualities, making them anthropomorphic.

The message of this DVD is to demonstrate friendship, acceptance and compassion. The episodes focus on taking care of one another and being thoughtful. I learned to continue to value my friends and enjoy fun times together. I also learned how to pronounce some of the difficult names of dinosaurs.

I give Gigantosaurus: Dino Tales 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 5. It is available now on DVD or digital, so look for it.

Reviewed by Bailey Rae F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 2-8
Description - Doozers: We Dig Spring! - Living at the edges of our world and right under our noses are Doozers. Just who are the Doozers? They're green, they're cute, they're three inches tall, full of energy, ideas, and enthusiasm they're AWESOME! Doozers love to create, build, and innovate. Doozers are DOERS they put their ideas into action! KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Ethan P. comments, "The stories follow four green Doozers that love helping wildlife and building things. Doozers are little green, cute and energetic creatures - two boys and two girls. Each one has a unique talent. For example, one has the power of science, another has technology, the third one has engineering and the fourth one has arts and math. All together it equals STEAM (science, technology, engineering arts and math)." See his full review below.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like Doozers We Dig Spring! DVD because it is very entertaining, even for an 11-year-old, like me. This animation has very unique story lines in every episode.

The DVD has six episodes, each about 11 minutes long. The stories follow four green Doozers that love helping wildlife and building things. Doozers are little green, cute and energetic creatures - two boys and two girls. Each one has a unique talent. For example, one has the power of science, another has technology, the third one has engineering and the fourth one has arts and math. All together it equals STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math). In every adventure they learn something new such as the stages of a butterfly, what bees like or how to work together.

My favorite episode is Oh Beehive where one of the Doozers is hungry and goes to a bakery to get something to eat. When he is about to go inside, a storm of bees swoops in front of the bakery's door so the owner has to shut the bakery down. The Doozer calls his friends to come and help him. All four Doozers together think of a genius plan so they can stop the bees and remove them from the door. The animation is cute with vibrant colors. The voice-overs are all by kids and their voices fit each character perfectly. The theme song is very energetic. Each episode is a different adventure and they don't necessary follow a sequence. My favorite catch phrase they say is, "Doo, doo, doo..." and, right after that phrase, they start working together as a team to resolve a situation or to build something.

The moral of Doozers We Dig Spring! is "team work makes the dream work," because in all six episodes all four Doozers team together to solve situations or to build something and they always put their ideas together to make things happen as a team.

I give Doozers We Dig Spring! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 4 to 18, and adults can enjoy this DVD as well. This DVD is available now so go get it before it runs out! Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Runtime: 66 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD, AGES 4-12
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like Floogals Investigation Station because it is very funny, original and creative. It captured my attention the whole time. I like that it is not just animation, as some parts are real life graphics. I also like that it is always teaching kids to explore and experiment in every episode.

This DVD is about three purple lookalike aliens called Floogals - Captain Fleeker, First Officer Flo and Junior Boomer. The Floogals learn new things and report back to their boss to inform him what they have learned on Earth. This DVD contains six episodes about experimentation, discovery and observation. Each episode has about 11 minutes of adventure and funny situations. One of the funniest things of this show is that the aliens call the humans "hoomans."

My favorite episode is "Project Popcorn." This episode is about the Floogals discovering a food called popcorn. When a human accidentally lets go of the popcorn, it falls and the dog eats it, so they think it is dog food. Later they start to realize what popcorn is. Another one of my favorite episodes is "Project Sleep" which is about how a "hooman" girl invites her friends over for a sleepover. The Floogals spy on the girls to see what a sleepover is all about. The Floogals slowly learn about and process the word "sleepover," The Floogals do not realize that the whole time they are actually part of the sleepover. The graphics are real live backgrounds and the Floogals are little animated aliens. The animation is neat and very colorful. The voiceover talent suits each character. I like Junior Boomer's character the most, because he is clumsy, funny, and always curious about learning new things.

The moral of this show is: don't ever let someone stop you from doing what you desire. Don't allow anyone to discourage you from doing what you are capable of doing. For example, Junior Boomer investigates this thing call "popcorn" and Captain Fleeker tries to stop him, but Junior Boomer still investigates.

I give Floogals Investigation Station 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it ages 6 to 18, plus adults. By Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic.
Runtime: 66 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - My Spy follows JJ a hardened CIA operative (Dave Bautista) who has been demoted and finds himself at the mercy of a precocious 9-year-old girl, named Sophie (Chloe Coleman) where he has been sent undercover begrudgingly to surveil her family. When Sophie discovers hidden cameras in her apartment, she uses her tech savviness to locate where the surveillance operation is set. In exchange for not blowing JJ's cover Sophie convinces him to spend time with her and teach her to be a spy. Despite his reluctance JJ finds he is no match for Sophie's disarming charm and wit. The hilarious actioner is directed by Peter Segal from a script penned by Jon and Erich Hoeber and stars Dave Bautista, Chloe Coleman, Kristen Schaal, Parisa Fitz-Henley and Ken Jeong. Producers are Chris Bender, Peter Segal, Jake Weiner, Robert Simonds, Gigi Pritzker, Dave Bautista and Jonathan Meisner.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I thought My Spy was so good because I loved the friendship and love that develops between the characters JJ (Dave Bautista) and Sophie (Chloe Coleman)! They start off as strangers and then, throughout the movie, JJ teaches her how to be a good spy, and she teaches him how to be a kinder person as their relationship grows stronger and they become friends. Not only does JJ have a change of heart and but eventually he develops feelings for her mom.

My Spy is the story of a CIA agent who is secretly watching a family in order to try and get information connected to a big case he is on. One of the people he is watching is the little girl, Sophie, who discovers J.J. and that he is spying on her and her mom. In exchange for not revealing his secret, Sophie makes him teach her how to be a good spy.

One of my favorite parts of My Spy is when JJ goes on a date with Sophie's mom and starts dancing. Because his character is so serious and he's such a large person, it's very funny to see him trying to do all these trendy dances...because he does it so terribly! Honestly, it kind of reminded me of my dad dancing.

For those who like Dave Bautista in Guardians of the Galaxy you will love him in this movie. Chloe Coleman has a very bright acting future--she is such a kind person both on and off camera, and she has such an amazing on-camera presence.

A quick note to parents: My Spy does contain some adult language (and in some songs played during the movie.) So while younger kids may enjoy it, parents should decide if their kids are mature enough to see a movie with moments of profanity.

My Spy is full of action, fun, comedy and love. I give My Spy 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 10 to 18, and adults will love it too! Available now on Amazon Prime

Reviewed by Lindalee R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

My Spy is a very entertaining and funny movie! The casting director, Anne McCarthy and Kellie Roy, picked the perfect people to play the roles in this film. The music selections are very upbeat and work perfectly in each scene.

My Spy tells the story of J.J. (Dave Bautista), a CIA agent who secretly spies on a family with his colleague Bobbi (Kristen Schaal) until their nine-year-old girl, Sophie Vale (Chloe Coleman) finds out what they are up to. Sophie blackmails J.J, into doing things for her so she's not left alone or unable to attend certain events. J.J. decides to help Sophie so that she won't tell anyone about him and blow his cover. They go on an adventure filled with drama and secret spy missions.

The main characters are J.J. and Sophie Vale--she is my favorite character. She is so smart and funny. My favorite part of this movie is when J.J. and Sophie are walking away from an explosion and Sophie's mom, Kate (Parisa Fitz-Henley), is confused because they are walking slowly away instead of running. The special effects, such as the explosions, in this movie are so realistic. The music really drives the movie, and the right song plays at the right time. For example, in the beginning, J.J. is in a car chase and tries to find the perfect song for the car chase. I also enjoyed seeing the relationship between actors Coleman and Bautista on scene. You can tell they had fun filming it together, and you'll have fun watching them on scene.

The message of My Spy is to trust people, even kids. Throughout the movie J.J. has to learn that he has people in his life that can help him. You have to let other people help in order to be successful or accomplish your goals-- you never know what could happen if you work with others and let them in. Adults should look out for gun violence and effects that may be scary for younger kids.

My Spy is a "spy-tastic" film that the whole family, especially older kids, will love! I give My Spy 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids 10 to 18 years old. Adults will like it too. My Spy comes out on Amazon Prime Video on June 26, 2020.

Reviewed by Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-14
Description - A boy becomes intrigued by a mysterious and quirky student named Stargirl and spends his time trying to know more about her.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Stargirl is an amazing movie that encourages you to be yourself and not let anyone tell you who else to be. This movie could make a great impact on the world and it has such a powerful and positive message with the ability to inspire many people.

Stargirl is about a boy named Leo Borlock (Graham Verchere) and a girl, Stargirl (Grace VanderWaal) who, after many years of being homeschooled, decides to attend a regular school and the two of them begin a connection. When Stargirl shows up at the school, positive things start happening, like the football team winning games, which it hadn't for YEARS)! But, when Stargirl makes a choice that causes the school to lose the championship football game, everyone turns on her and it's up to Leo to save Stargirl and win back everyone's love for her.

One of my favorite parts is when Stargirl sings Happy Birthday to Leo at the beginning of the movie, because that's when he starts noticing that this girl is different and wonders what she knows about him. What a surprise to have a complete stranger serenade you on your birthday, in front of the whole school! I also love the moment when Stargirl runs out of her house as Leo is leaving and kisses him. She's like, "Oh no, what do I do now?" and runs back into her house. I think that's so cute and funny and I love that he gets so giggly and happy about it. It is so adorable.

The message of this film is simple enough - be true to yourself and never let anybody tell you who to be or what to do, because you'll be unhappy with yourself in the end.

I love Stargirl and give it 5 out of 5 stars. I recommend it for ages 10 to 18. If you're in high school you'll be able to relate to at least one of the many likeable characters in this movie. And, Disney fans, as well as adults will LOVE this movie too. There's something for the whole family in this film. Make sure to have a box of tissues near by when you watch it. You just may need it for both the heartwarming and joyful moments. This movie is streaming on Disney+ beginning March 13, 2020.

By Lindalee Rose, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 8-14 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: AUDIO CD FOR AGES 4-12
Description - URR the alien returns to Emilia's backyard to get her help in saving beautiful Kokowanda Bay which has become polluted. The two work together and sing these catchy tunes as they learn about recycling, reusing, and reducing, to make the world a better place.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The mother and daughter team of Ruth and Emilia have a winner of a new album on their hands with Kokowanda Bay, a rock 'em sock 'em joyous explosion of fun and educational songs of friendship, caring, love and wondrous discovery and includes a cute alien visitor from another planet for good measure. The production value and super vocals are indeed other-worldly with great use of instruments. (Hey, isn't that an oboe!) Songs move the story merrily along. A fun time is guaranteed for all - on this or any planet!

Kokowanda Bay by Ruth & Emilia is finely produced, well paced and flows easily. The album speaks to its target age group with messages of love, acceptance and care for the Earth. The arrangements are totally appealing and the vocals are terrific. I absolutely recommend this with its very positive and educational messages. It encourages that we all, regardless of age, can do our bit to be proactive. This album does not talk down to its audience, but uplifts them to a brighter understanding. All done in a loving and creative way.

The production value is terrific. The vocals are lovely and the musicians are on their game. It has lots of positive messages about going green, recycling and the wonders of nature. This would make a terrific tool for schools with its participatory projects, especially regarding science and the environment. I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. Reviewed by John Wood, KIDS FIRST! Music Specialist
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Ruth and Emilia: Kokowanda Bay is a fun musical story that is extremely positive, while teaching younger viewers many important things about friendship. Even though this CD comes off as a children's CD, do not let that turn you away because this little package has lots to offer such as amazing singing, lyrics and important morals.

An adventurous team of Kokowanda Bay is formed when the planet Goopda sends an alien named UUR to Earth to save Kokowanda Bay. The team explores different ways to help the earth such as "going green" and planting flowers across Kokowanda Bay. They also participate in fun beach activities and learn about some of nature's cycles.

There are many reasons to love this CD and the biggest one is the vocals. Emilia Lopez-Ya�ez and Ruth Weber's voices are amazing! Their voices combined makes you want to listen to this CD for hours! Emilia and Ruth also wrote the song lyrics, which are also outstanding. They are creative and positive one thing that makes it even more fun is that they rhyme most of the time.

This CD is extremely kid-friendly, however, it moves very fast so it may be difficult for younger viewers to comprehend the entire story. The CD teaches young viewers the importance of friendship while also teaching different ways to take care of the environment.

I give Ruth and Emilia: Kokowanda Bay 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 8. This CD is widely available now. Look for it. Reviewed by Jude A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 4-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 12.99 Media: AUDIO

Description - Set in a suburban fantasy world, two teenage elf brothers embark on a quest to discover if there is still magic out there.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Oh my gosh, I loved this film from Disney/Pixar. Perhaps my favorite Pixar film yet! Lovely story with a wonderful message, beautiful told and, of course, beautifully animated. I could watch this multiple times and shared it with my daughter who is 12. The humor is great, without bowing to potty humor, thankfully. The voice actors are superb in their character portrayals (Tom Holland and Chris Pratt) and Octavia Spencer as The Manticore is the icing on the cake. Love it love it love it. Go see it. You'll be glad you did. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - As of now, this film is easily one of my favorite Pixar films. I adore the touching story and especially the world building. Overall, Onward is an amazing film.

Onward takes in a world much like our own, except it's populated with fantasy creatures. We follow two elf brothers, Ian and Barley Lightfoot as they discover magic still exists and thus go on a quest to revive their father for one day.

So, first the animation. I feel like this is pretty self-explanatory. Since it is Pixar, the animation is absolutely outstanding. But, I specifically want to discuss the world in which Onward takes place. There are so many creative and diverse character designs and representations of mythological creatures (which I appreciate as a mythology fan). The world building is probably some of the best I've ever seen. I have contemplated the idea of a suburban fantasy, so I'm really happy seeing that idea brought to life. There's a lot of really funny gags surrounding this idea, such as an historically accurate "Dungeons and Dragons" and unicorns becoming the equivalent of raccoons. You can tell the artists really enjoyed designing the settings.

However, the world is not the only enjoyable aspect of this film. The characters are especially fun. The two brothers, Ian and Barley, have amazing chemistry. This is probably thanks to their voices actors - Tom Holland playing Ian and Chris Pratt playing Barley. They already have a connection from the Marvel movies, so their relationship feels real. But Ian and Barley aren't the only great characters in this movie. I would say my personal favorite character is The Manticore, played by Octavia Spencer. The Manticore is probably the funniest character and I really like her friendship with the brothers' mom, Laurel (Julia Louis-Dreyfus).

Speaking of which, Onward is really funny. There's a specific scene involving The Manticore that caused me to laugh probably the hardest I've ever laughed at a Pixar movie. There are also a lot of gags involving the fact that the world is populated with fantasy creatures.

And as expected from a Pixar film, it's pretty emotional. And, given the context of the plot, I feel this might be one of Pixar's most heart wrenching films. When you think about it, who wouldn't want to bring someone back, even for one day?

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18. It comes out on March 6, 2020 so look for it.

Reviewed by Calista B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Onward is a spectacular film! I especially enjoyed the very well written story line and the animation. This film had me laughing and crying, as well as sitting on the edge of my seat. The characters are funny and very well animated, and remind me of humans that I know and love.

Onward is about two elf brothers named Ian (Tom Holland) and Barley (Chris Pratt). Their dad passed away when the Barley was very young and Ian was about to be born. All the two brothers want is to see their dad again. After getting their dad's old wizard staff and a spell to bring him back for a day, they find it is a lot harder than it seems and they need to work together to solve the puzzle.

The characters in this film are voiced by some very well-known names. Tom Holland (Spiderman movies) voices Ian Lightfoot and Chris Pratt (Guardians of the Galaxy, Jurassic World) plays Barley Lightfoot. Julia Louis-Dreyfus voices Laurel Lightfoot, Ian and Barley's mom. Manticore, the fierce creature who helps the brothers, is voiced by Octavia Spencer (Hidden Figures).

Onward has everything that a fairy tale adventure film needs. The whole film is filled with magic and magical creatures like a fairy tale films has, but it also contains just the right amount of action to make it qualify as an adventure film as well. Onward's story line is fantastic! Every single detail is spot-on. My only problem with this film is that the pace starts a little slowly, but it picks up as the story develops. Other than that, I love this movie!

My favorite character in this movie is Barley, Ian's big brother. He is my favorite because most of his lines are very funny and he had me laughing every time he opened his mouth. I admire him because the other creatures think Barley is weird, but he is confident in who he wants to be and he is always himself.

The message of this film is that sometimes the very thing that you are looking for is right in front of you. I give Onward 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18, plus adults. Onward opens in theaters March 6, 2020, so be sure to look for it! Now I will take my family to see this movie. By Eva W, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

This animated fantasy film, directed and co-written by Dan Scanlon, is heart-warming and magical! Onward is a hilarious movie with terrific animation and special effects. Jeff and Mychael Dana's musical compositions are spectacular and really drive the flow of the movie.

Onward is about two teenage elves that receive a magical staff left to them by their father when he passed away. Their father was a magical wizard and created a way for them to use a magic spell to bring him back for 24 hours. Unfortunately, when they try to use it, the staff malfunctions and only half of their father returns. So, the brothers go on an adventurous journey to find the phoenix gem, so they can bring back the other half of their father. The catch is they only have 24 hours to do it, while solving the mystery using weird clues and some magic to get to see their dad again.

The protagonists are Ian Lightfoot (Tom Holland) and Barkley Lightfoot (Chris Pratt). The chemistry between the brothers is amazing, which is probably because Tom and Chris have worked with each other before. All the characters are well-developed. My favorite character is The Manticore (Octavia Spencer), because she is extremely funny. I love how she becomes the fearless warrior she was before the world stopped believing in magic. My favorite scene is when Ian uses the magic staff to make a gas can bigger and accidentally shrinks Barkley. Barkley jumps up and down, because he thought the magic worked, and then realizes it only worked on him. It is pretty funny. I also think it is clever how the unicorns play the role of raccoons and dragons act as pets. The special effects in this movie are spot on. I love the scene where Ian tries to bring his father back and everything flies around the room. Other scenes where Ian uses the magic staff are pretty cool too.

Even though the special effects are great, they are not what make this movie magical. The message of the film does. Many of the characters in this film have stopped believing in their own magic. In order for them to move onward, they need to believe in themselves, each other and the magic they each have. Adults may want to be cautious with children that have lost loved ones, as it might be disturbing to them.

Onward is an adventurous, family-friendly movie. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18. Adults will enjoy this too. Move onward to see this film in theaters opening in theaters March 6, 2020. Reviewed by Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

Onward is fun, exiting, adventurous, and an emotional roller coaster. Pixar delivers another wonderful film that is very appealing to new generations and easy to relate, despite characters from another world.

Onward is a computer animated, urban fantasy film directed by Dan Scanlon, who also co-wrote the script with Jason Headley and Keith Bunin. The story follows brothers Ian (Tom Holland) and Barley Lightfoot (Chris Pratt), two teenage elf's who embark on an extraordinary quest. Their goal is to try and see if there is magic left in the world, in order to spend one last day with their father, who died when they were younger. This is a story about bonding between father and son, and between two brothers.

Tom Holland, as Ian, the younger of the two brothers delivers a very subtle, but engaging interpretation that makes the audience immediately connect with his loner behavior. Chris Pratt, as Barley, the eldest brother, is vibrant, optimistic and his personality is almost opposite to his younger brother. Octavia Spencer plays Manticore, a fearless creature who can fly and sends people on quests). I absolutely love Octavia's performance and Manticore is my favorite character. I've always loved Octavia as an actress, so I was really exited that she voices this character. Another great voice is Laurel, the brother's mother, by super fun and charismatic Julia Louise-Dreyfus.

The animation in this movie is very detailed and sometimes photo realistic. Pixar has developed digital animation over the years to a fine art, and truly this film displays that. You can see so many details in the characters' facial expressions. If you look very closely you can see that the elves all have freckles! There is also a lot of emotion in this movie and the animation displays it so well.

I'm pretty sure everyone who watches this movie will cry at one point. I sure did. One of the fascinating aspects of Onward is how these fantasy creatures interact with each other and go through a journey of redemption and self discovery.

Onward is entertaining all the way, but some jokes don't work out and, at some point, it's a little hard to feel fully invested in one of the characters that appears only from his waist to his feet.

The message of this film is - believe. The magic in the film is a metaphor for our own ability of make things happen and letting out the light within ourselves.

I give Onward 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 13. Make sure to check out Onward in theaters on March 6, 2020. By Zoe C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Onward is Disney/Pixar's new action-packed animated movie with lots of magical laughs! There's hilarious physical humor, exciting chases and fights, but it's also a very moving film. You really feel the main characters' sense of loss at not growing up with their father.

Ian (Tom Holland) and Barley Lightfoot (Chris Pratt) are teenage elf brothers who live in a suburban mushroom house in a land that was formerly full of magic. They use a spell to bring their dad back to life, but only get his bottom half! They have 24 hours to complete a quest to finish the spell and see him one more time. All they need to finish the spell is the Phoenix gem, but finding it proves a lot more complicated than they first think. While they are working to bring him back, they have to bring their dad's legs and feet along with them for the ride.

The animators have created a beautiful imaginative world with lots of clever details that will make you want to watch again and again. The voice acting is top notch, with Tom Holland and Chris Pratt showing a range of emotions and humor as Ian and Barley. Octavia Spencer as Manticore brings her character to life with frantic energy. The introduction of her character is hilarious! She's a former magical adventurer turned family restaurant owner. I really like the part when Barley shrinks down to a tiny size due to Ian messing up a spell. I also like when Ian turns their boat into a cheese puff so they can eat their own transportation! I love Officer Colt and his catchphrase where he asks everyone if they are "working hard or hardly working."

There are a lot of positive messages in this film about family and loyalty. Another message is that you can go searching for things you've never had in life, but you might find they were right with you all along. Parents of younger kids might want to watch out for some of the risky actions the brothers take, like when Ian walks off a cliff, trusting in his magic to keep him safe.

I give this movie 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 5 to 17, and adults will like it too. You can see Onward in theaters everywhere starting March 6, 2020. By Will C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

I love Onward! It is a whimsical story filled with colorful and eccentric characters. Pixar nailed the animation, and the cast of voices is pure perfection.

Onward takes place in a magical world, that isn't quite so magical anymore. Brothers Ian (Tom Holland) and Barley (Chris Pratt) are complete opposites in every way. Brave Barley is never is afraid to take a risk, especially when it involves magic. Ian, on the other hand, is quirky, and lacks confidence. Their mom, Laurel (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), is an important character as she is the glue keeping their family together.

The movie is inspired by the director, Dan Scanlon's own childhood. I love the setting of this movie. It takes place in a modern town, where everyone lives in mushroom-shaped houses. Unicorns, once a majestic creature, are now more like raccoons than anything else. Adorable mini dragons are kept as pets. The voice-over actors are wonderful. Mel Rodriguez, who voices Officer Bronco, has the funniest laugh. Octavia Spencer, who voices The Manticore, acts as wild as a Manticore should. Tom Holland (Ian) perfectly portrays an awkward kid. My favorite character is Barley, because he is a classic rock loving boy.

The messages of this movie are that family is the most important thing and sometimes what you're looking for has been with you the whole time. This film does have some magical scenes that kids should not imitate. It also reminds us to always pay your parking tickets.

I give Onward 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18. People with siblings will especially like it as will adults. Onward opens in theaters March 6, 2020. By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Description - After discovering a small, blue, fast hedgehog, a small-town police officer must help it defeat an evil genius who wants to do experiments on it.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like this movie because is based on one of my favorite game characters. Sonic The Hedgehog is a live-action film--except for Sonic who is a CGI character (Ben Schwartz)--based on the global blockbuster video game franchise from Sega.

The story of Sonic the Hedgehog follows Sonic, a small blue hedgehog who has super-speed powers. When Sonic was younger, his owl guardian gave him a bag of rings to help him escape to different planets in case anyone discovers and kidnaps him because of his powers. One night, after he comes to Earth, he is playing baseball by himself and he gets upset because he realizes he is very lonely. Sonic runs in circles as fast as he can because he is upset. He is so fast that blue energy comes out of his body causing the whole town to black out.

This power outage causes big problems for Sonic who is pursued by a crazy military man named Dr. Ivo Robotnik (Jim Carrey) or Dr. Eggman, as Sonic calls him. Fortunately for Sonic, the town's sheriff (James Marsden) catches him and helps protect him from Dr. Robotnik.

The graphics in the movie are excellent, and, with the new Sonic design, it looks like Sonic is real. The new design works better than the Sonic design Paramount Pictures had before redoing this movie. The special effects are impressive too, such as Sonic's blue lightning which also looks real. Ben Schwartz did and very funny voiceover for the Sonic character. He is really full of energy.

The moral of this movie is that you are never alone in the world. There will always be someone for you to be your friend, to talk to and to be by your side when you need it. When Sonic is feeling alone, Sheriff Tom, or The Doughnut Lord, as Sonic calls him, takes Sonic to protect him and help him get to the Mushroom planet where Sonic needs to go.

Sonic the Hedgehog is filled with a lot of action and fun. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars. If I could, I would give this movie 100 out of 100 stars. I recommend it for ages 5 to 18 plus older adults. Sonic the Hedgehog comes out in theaters on February 14, 2020.

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Sonic the Hedgehog fails to evoke the propulsive rush of its source material. There's so much possibility in translating this character and the mythology he brings with him from the video game to the big screen. Unfortunately, this film gets bogged down in familiar family film antics.

An adaptation of the popular game franchise of the same name, Sonic the Hedgehog follows Sonic (Ben Schwartz), a carefree, lightning-quick blue hedgehog who hides out, in fear of what those with villainous intent would do with his super-speed. Trouble comes calling in the form of a genius named Dr. Ivo Robotnik (Jim Carrey), who is brought in to deal with the growing threat of a rogue, ultra-powerful hedgehog. Sonic convinces a small-town police officer (James Marsden), who dreams of working in the big city, to help him retrieve a few of his golden rings to help Sonic flee this world and move on to a new one.

Jim Carrey delivers a next-level performance as Dr. Ivo Robotnik, and he's easily Sonic's most valuable asset. Robotnik is another entry in the pantheon of zany, almost manic characters Carrey plays so beautifully. Carrey hasn't been this in control of his comedic strengths in a long while and its great to see him back in his element. His performance is on an entirely different wavelength than the rest of the film and, yet, it feels like he knows exactly what this movie should be. Kooky, frenetic and even more cartoonish than the film's CGI lead, Jim Carrey gives Sonic the Hedgehog a boost of energy it desperately needs. Ben Schwartz works well as the blue speedster at the center of the film. There's an innocence and playfulness to Sonic that Schwartz radiates nicely in his vocal performance.

I don't understand the screenwriter's choice to coop Sonic up in a car for much of the film's runtime. A character that is known for his speed finally arrives on the big screen, and they chose to confine him to a car with James Marsden. At the point at which the road trip begins, it feels as though you see every moment on the journey ahead coming far before you're supposed to. When Sonic and his pal arrive at their destination, they reach a visually exciting climax, but no payoff can make up for the bland route that is taken to get there. These games are not the most modern and this adaptation does its best to rectify that with countless references to current trends and popular culture to middling results. Even so, Sonic the Hedgehog struggles to keep its finger on the pulse of the culture.

I give this film 2 out of 5 stars and an age recommendation of 4 to 12 for some peril and crude humor. Sonic the Hedgehog is not the disaster many expected, nor the surprise sensation nobody saw coming; it's just fine, and I was hoping for more than that from this film. Fans of this character will relish getting to see him on the big screen, but I'm not sure I can confidently recommend this to those who are not die-hard Sonic fans. Sonic the Hedgehog releases in theaters February 14, 2020

Reviewed by Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

I've never played Sonic the video game and was never a really big fan of the character but I really like this movie. It is very well done and great for the whole family. I like the animation and I love the acting. The story is very human and has very little to do with video games. It is about friendship and friends that become a family.

Sonic the Hedgehog is about a blue hedgehog that ends up on earth and he's trying not to be discovered. He lost a ring that helps him transport to places. When humans find Sonic, he has to run away (something he does well because he moves at super sonic speeds). Sonic feels lonely and wants a friend. When he meets Tom, a police officer (James Marsden), they develop a great "bromance," but they have to face Mr. Robotnik who is obsessed with everything fast and wants to experiment with Sonic. In their journey, both learn they don't have to run away from their problems.

I love all the characters! Dr. Robotnik is so funny and pleasing to watch. He is played by Jim Carrey, who is one of my new favorite actors. His performance is amazing and he is definitely a fascinating villain. He is graceful, entertaining and full of life. I also love the character Sonic; even though it is an animated character he really looks realistic. I could really see all the details in Sonic and I felt like he was pretty much a stuffed animal, opposed to a virtual digital character. Sonic is played by Ben Schwartz, an amazing voice actor who gives the character a great personality.

It's so amazing to see a character that was made about 30 years ago continuing to fill children's hearts with joy. I think Sonic is 100% absolutely adorable and all the characters are so fun to watch. There are a lot of action scenes and wonderful colors in the film as well. The music adds so much energy; it is catchy and upbeat. Finally, I like all the jokes and they definitely made me laugh. To add to that, I love how Sonic gives everyone their own special nickname. That gives the movie its own special touch and I guess I'll nick name this film "Blue Speedy Furry with Heart."

I give Sonic the Hedgehog five out of five stars and recommended it for ages 4 to 13. The message of this film is that friends in our lives bring us the most joy and they are the family we chose. Another message is that humans will always be more important than technology. Dr. Robotnik keeps trying to make technology a greater power than humans, but Sonic and everyone prove that our simple life and connections are what really matter. Sonic the Hedgehog opens February 14, 2020. Look for it!

Reviewed by Zoe C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

I really love this movie! Sonic the Hedgehog's team has created a movie based on the SEGA video game of the same name. There are amazing special effects from the beginning to the end. I love how it includes parts from the SEGA game, such as Sonic running in vertical loops and his spin attacks. I felt as if I was watching a live version of the actual game!

Sonic the Hedgehog is about a blue, fast and funny hedgehog named Sonic (Ben Schwartz) who has to escape his home in another world and ends up on Earth. He accidentally causes a power outage and has to hide out in Green Hill, Montana. The government tries to hunt him down and hires Dr. Ivo Robotnik (Jim Carrey) to capture him. Sonic meets a cop named Tom Wachowski (James Marsden) or Donut Lord, as Sonic calls him, and Tom agrees to help Sonic, find his rings and defeat Dr. Ivo Robotnik, who wants to use Sonic's power to take over the world.

The lead characters are Sonic, Tom Wachowski and Dr. Ivo Robotnik. It is very clever that the movie takes place in Green Hill, Montana, since the first level of the actual SEGA game is called Green Hill Zone. My favorite character is Sonic because he is funny. I love how he is made to have lives, just like he does in the SEGA game. One of my favorite scenes is when Dr. Ivo Robotnik has a virtual reality screen behind him and it shows a dinosaur running after him. Jim Carrey uses his flexibility to lower his head to make it look like the dinosaur bit it off. The movie is filled with special effects, such as explosions and lightning when Sonic runs. Sonic's CGI perfectly match his character in the video game. This is something the producer went back to correct before releasing the film. The music ties into what happens for each part of the movie; however, I was a little disappointed that the song Super Sonic used in the trailer is not in the movie.

The main message of Sonic the Hedgehog is that you should consider home wherever people that care the most about you are. There isn't much to be forewarned about besides Dr. Ivo Robotnik uses some minor foul language.

I rate Sonic the Hedgehog 5 out of 5 rings and recommend it for kids ages 6 to 18. Adults, especially gamers, will also love this movie. Since it's based on the Sonic the Hedgehog video game by SEGA, it may remind them of their own childhood. It's a great action-packed, family movie. Catch Sonic the Hedgehog in theaters starting February 14, 2020. Be sure to stay for the credits.

Reviewed by Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: E-BOOK, AGES 2-5
Description - A quest for the perfect birthday present leads to ever grander (and ever more imperfect) gift ideas from our hero, a duck. "I wanted to get you the greatest present ever,!" our narrator tells us. But somehow, none of the best ideas seem to pan out. First, there was the pair of hand-knitted birthday socks (have you ever tried knitting birthday socks?). Then, the ten-scoop ice cream cone (a disaster to carry), the magic kit (it disappeared, just like magic!), the apple juice-fueled jet pack (still a few kinks to work out) and the dinosaur (I couldn't find one anywhere). And now, time has run out, and our narrator still has nothing to give. Or, maybe there is something after all. Something that contains all those awesome gifts in one. Something that can be enjoyed again and again, just by turning the pages.

In their debut picture book, Emmy Award-winning children's television writers Mike Erskine-Kellie and Susan McLennan have taken a metafiction approach (speaking directly to "you"). Cale Atkinson's is the illustrator. Though a book about finding the perfect birthday present is itself the perfect birthday present, it's also a simple a good read year round because it offers character education lesson on perseverance. There is also a live show.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I really enjoyed this book. The illustrations are engaging and brightly colored, which will attract young children. The story itself is a fun read with a lovely message. Also, the character is very likable.

The story is about a quest for the perfect birthday present. The main character does not know what to get a friend for his birthday explores various options and why they are not suitable. The character finally comes up with a clever solution. The story flows very well and the ending is lovely. It makes sense and is very appropriate for preschool and early elementary age children. A young child could be asked questions about birthday gifts and what to get for friends and family. One could even ask them which gift idea they liked the best.

This is an e-book with visual appealing the illustrations. They really make the book. It is primarily entertaining but also has a message about birthday celebrations with people who are special to you. It might make kids start thinking about what they want for their birthday. (how fun is that?) My only concern is the vocabulary. I am not an expert in this, but I would pass it on to someone who is, because there are some words that might not be the most suitable for the target age.

I give this 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 7. Reviewed by Denise B., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - See adult comments
Juror Recommended Age: 2-5 Suggested Retail Price: $ 18.8 Media: Book

Series: DVD, AGES 4-10
Description - Llama Llama springs to life in these heart-warming tales based on the award-winning book series by author and illustrator Anna Dewdney. Join Llama Llama, Nelly Gnu, Luna Giraffe, Euclid the Sheep and Gilroy Goat as they explore their friendly hometown and make childhood memories.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - The Llama Llama Family Fun Collection DVD features the animated friends from Anna Dewdney's Llama Llama book series in 15 stories, including holiday stories for Halloween, Mother's Day and Valentine's Day. The friends learn to use their unique talents with some creativity to overcome day to day problems by following grown up advice and helping each other. In "Stage Fright," Luna Giraffe's upcoming dance recital is giving her performance jitters, but Llama Llama and Nelly Gnu are there to offer support, calming breaths and remind her to just have fun. Nelly Gnu is jealous of the attention her baby brother receives in the story "Jealous Nelly." Her new tree-house takes a backseat to babysitting and party planning for the baby. She misses her parents' and friends' attention, but soon realizes that being a big sister is the perfect role for her. The friends accept the challenge to do without their electronic gadgets when Grandma Llama and Mama Llama take them on an overnight campout in "Let's Go Camping." They use their five senses to appreciate the sights and sounds of nature. Upbeat, positive messages about friendship and family make these great for family viewing. Children ages 4 to 8 should enjoy these fun, engaging episodes. I give this 5 out of 5 stars. Reviewed by Christine R., KIDS FIRST! Adult Reviewer.
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Llama Llama Family Fun Collection is a cute, fun, and family-friendly DVD that is based on an award-winning book and TV series. The storyline and adorable personalities of the characters combine to make the viewing experience enjoyable. The characters' companionship is very sweet, and they care a lot about one another. They always have each other's back.

The Llama Llama Family Fun Collection DVD is collection of episodes about a group of animal companions that go on a lot of adventures, meet new friends and solve problems along the way. In one episode, Llama Llama's friend, Luna the Giraffe, struggles with bad stage fright. She has a dance recital the next day. Llama Llama and Nelly Gnu have to help her, or she won't be able to perform without becoming nervous on stage. In another episode, Llama Llama and two of his friends, Gilroy Goat and Euclid Sheep, plan a sleepover together. What they don't know is that strange things will happen just as they are about to go to sleep. But maybe the friends' imaginations will wander too far.

Some of the lead characters are Mama Llama (Jennifer Garner) and Llama Llama (Shayle Simons). They are an adorable mother-son duo, and they love each other very much. What really stands out in this collection is the incredibly detailed and expressive animation. The vibrant colors and homey scenery go hand in hand to create a wholesome, fun show for children and their families to watch. It really is a great choice for teaching good lessons to young minds.

The message of the DVD Llama Llama Family Fun Collection is that you should always be willing to help your friends, and that problems can be solved through the effort of a team. It is definitely successful in communicating its message through the close-knit friend group, and how they stick together and help each other face their fears. The message is definitely positive and uplifting, and can teach young children that companionship is an important life skill to have. There really isn't anything to worry about when children are watching this series. There is no bad language at all, and there isn't any negative behavior that young children may attempt to imitate.

I give this series 4 out of 5 stars, and recommend it for ages 3 to 10. The Llama Llama Family Fun Collection DVD is available now.

Reviewed by Ruby A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I like the Llama Llama Family Fun Collection DVD because every episode has a different main idea with an interesting story to tell. The animated characters each have their own thoughts about things and how to approach a situation. The only part I didn't really like is that the characters sometimes talk too slow and you want to make them talk faster, but it probably makes it easier for little kids to understand.

The Llama Llama Family Collection has 15 episodes and is based on the book series written and illustrated by Anna Dewdney. The animated collection is about a llama and his friends who have awesome adventures together. Each episode has a moral to the story. For example, in one of the episodes, Luna (a giraffe, voiced by Vania Gill) is very scared to go on stage to perform a solo in front of an audience. Then Llama Llama and Nelly Gnu get a dance machine and it really helps Luna lose her fear of performing in front of an audience. Another story tells about Llama Llama, Euclid and Gilroy Goat having a sleepover, where they experience new and different things while at a friend's house. I know when I go to a sleepover, I find myself trying a new food or doing any activity that I wouldn't necessarily have done at my house.

I didn't recognize the voices of any of the characters, although after looking at who does the voices, I recognize Jennifer Garner, who voices Mama Llama. I like Luna's personality, but my favorite character is Euclid (Brendon Sunderland). He's smart, but in a funny way. I like when the group of friends take swimming lessons with Mama Llama in Eleanor Elephant's (Kathleen Barr) pool. Even though Llama Llama (Shayle Simons) isn't a great swimmer, his friends are supportive. And it is cute seeing Llama Llama's grandpa (David Hoole) learn to swim, too.

The message of the film is to be nice to others. It's important to help your friends, rather than make fun of them or bring them down. When I see someone making fun of someone, I try to stand up for them. It is nice to watch a film where a group of friends support one another.

I rate this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 3 to 9. This DVD is available now, so go look for it!

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 165 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 5-10 Suggested Retail Price: $ 12.95 Media: DVD

Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - Based on a true story of Holocaust heroism during World War II in the Philippines by Filipino President Manuel L. Quezon--who rescued as many persecuted Jews as Oskar Schindler at a time when most countries were turning their backs--the release of Quezon's Game also marks the landmark 75th anniversary on Jan. 27 of the liberation of Auschwitz, the Nazi's most-notorious concentration camp. Once forgotten to history, the incredible tale of what just one man can accomplish when defeat isn't an option ... a miraculous feat of human triumph. Starring Raymond Bagatsing, Rachel Alejandro, Billy Ray Gallion, David Bianco, and James Paolelli and Kate Alejandrino. Directed by Matthew Rosen.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I was complete unaware of this story before watching this film. It provides homage to the heroic efforts of Manual Quezon and his advisors to rescue Jews trapped in German and Austrian ghettos.

Inspired by a true story, this docudrama directed by Matthew Rosen offers the viewer a recounting of how, just before WWII, the President of the Philippines, Manuel L. Quezon (Raymond Bagatsing), rescued more than 1200 Jews from Germany, in spite of the anti-Semitic forces in his own country and world-wide. It begins with disturbing newsreel footage showing Jews incinerated by the Nazis. These were dangerous times and, had not Quezon acted in the way he did, these refugees would not have survived. High Commissioner to the Philippines Paul McNutt (James Paoleli) and Jewish American businessman Alex Frieder (Billy Ray Gallion), along with young officer and future U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower (David Bianco) bring the plight of the German Jews to the President's attention and then attempt to get visas for more than 10,000 of them trapped in Nazi Germany.

The sets and locations artfully reflect scenes from 1938 Philippines, as do the costumes, manners and music. I love seeing the horse-drawn carriages, the men in their Panama hats, the women in white, and the tinted film - all of which appropriately show the time period. Raymond Bagatsing, who plays President Quezon, is shown as a young man hiding his life-threatening illness, tuberculosis, from those around him. His feelings of despair about the German Jews provoke him to put his own health aside in order to do what he can to rescue them. Aurora (Rachel Alejandro), his wife shows strength in protecting her husband, while knowing he is hiding something from her (his illness).

The rise of anti-Semitism pushes the President to take action, as we see newsreels of Jews being turned away as they arrive in Cuba and the Alex Frieder being turned away at the German club with the Nazi sign clearly in view inside the front door. David Bianco portrays a youthful Dwight Eisenhower who will become the U.S. President after the war. When the refugees arrive, looking emaciated and exhauster, they are greeted by the president, his family and advisors. Thanks to Quezon's efforts over 1200 Jewish refugees were saved. The closing credits include interviews with some of the refugees who were children at the time of their rescue. Their testimonials reinforce the selfless act of Quezon, to help their families when everyone else was turning them away.

The message of this film is about selflessness and honor; about doing the right thing, even when the world around you is not. I give Quezon's Game 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 11 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult juror.

Reviewed by Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This film is incredible. It really is a great expression of Manuel Quezon's heroism in the time of World War II. The characters are so physically and emotionally involved with the events that take place. Since this is a huge part of the true story, it really helps the audience discover the brutal reality of this situation and how the Holocaust affected so many innocent people. These unparalleled features in this film make it an educational and moving experience.

Quezon's Game is about the president of The Philippines (his term ran from 1935 to 1944) and an important telegram that is passed on to an American ambassador by several officials. The telegram, sent from Austria by a Chinese ambassador, says that there are Jewish refugees who need a place to go. Quezon comes across this and is determined to take action after being urged by his wife and an ambassador, Alex, who he works with.

The lead characters are Manuel Quezon (Raymond Bagatsing), Aurora Quezon (Rachel Alejandro) and Alex Frieder (Billy Ray Gallion). The characters and the events of the story are based on true events, which is crucial, and the cast portrays them remarkably well. For example, Bagatsing and Gallion express such vivid emotions and opinions and Alejandro shows a tough and strong attitude in a bad situation. They really shine throughout the entire film. My favorite part is when Manuel, his allies and political advisors reach their goal of being able to transport the refugees from Europe to the Philippines. The victory is very emotional for everyone and Manuel, along with those working with him, are happy to welcome the people to the Philippines, their new home.

The message of this film is that if you fight for what you believe in, work hard and are determined, you will eventually reach your goal. The film, sets and emotionally-moving reality go hand in hand and make Quezon's Game one of the most memorable, true story-based movies I have ever seen. This movie definitely calls me to action with its powerful message.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, as well as adults. You can find Quezon's Game in theaters beginning January 24, 2020.

Reviewed by Ruby L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Quezon's Game, directed by Matthew Rosen, is an incredible and triumphant depiction of true life events that is a delight to watch play out onscreen. The film captures the beauty of the Philippines showing amazing landscapes and bright colors. The filmmakers show a persistent, noble, and accurate version of Quezon through the actor Raymond Bagatsing who dramatically captures the spirit of the iconic leader. In Quezon's Game, the acting is wonderful, the production is gorgeous, and the plot is intriguing and riveting. This is a very well made film.

Quezon's Game details the true story about the journey that Manuel Quezon, President of the Philippines, takes in order to help Alex Frieder bring Jewish refugees into the country in order to flee the impending doom of the Holocaust. Meanwhile, Quezon's health is deteriorating and his marriage suffers trials and tribulations. The film depicts a young President Eisenhower and diplomat Paul McNutt helping Frieder and Quezon. The actions taken by Quezon and his team, along with encouragement and help from his wife and his daughter, are moral, tenacious, and beyond heroic.

Quezon's Game is an extraordinary story, one that brought my mother and I to tears multiple times throughout watching it. I don't necessarily cry that often during movies, but Quezon's Game is so powerful and poignant, I couldn't help but shed more than a few tears. I am incredibly impressed with the high production value and gorgeous setting. It must have been such a joy to film on such a magnificent set. The acting is also high caliber as all the actors go above and beyond to embody their characters. The writing and the plot are intense and I was highly interested throughout the entire film. It is fast-paced, stimulating and easy to follow. It is emotional and astonishing. In addition to being a fantastic film, Quezon's Game promotes righteous morals and exceptionally positive messages. Quezon always perseveres through his challenges and does what's right. He puts the needs of others before himself and truly does heroic work. He never gives up and fights for the cause.

Quezon's Game is an incredible and inspiring film, one that I will remember for a long time. The acting is phenomenal, the setting is wonderful, the production values are high, and the plot is intriguing. I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18 due to some difficult themes and jarring images. Quezon's Game opens in theatres January 24, 2020. Be sure to see it!

Reviewed by Ella L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

Quezon's Game is a beautiful movie that is based on true events. This movie has great music and acting, lots of drama and emotion. There are also some scenes that made me cry. This movie taught me a lot about what happened behind the scenes during World War II. My only complaint with this movie is that when they speak Filipino, there are Spanish words included. I'm not sure if that is accurate or if it is a mistake, but being Latino, it caught my attention.

The storyline follows Philippine President Manuel Quezon, in 1938, trying to save as many Jewish refugees as he can from Hitler and the Nazis before the Holocaust. President Quezon is fighting a personal relapse of tuberculosis at the same time. There are other historical figures of note such as future U.S. President Dwayne Eisenhower. This story is not very well known. It is certainly the first time I hears about it. Quezon's Game teaches about an aspect of history you might never learn in school.

The acting in Quezon's Game is fantastic. Raymond Bagatsing, who plays President Quezon, gives a heart stopping performance that captures every essence of the actual person. There is so much emotion and effort put into his performance. It is cool how much Raymond Bagatsing looks a little bit like the real Manuel Quezon. This movie has gorgeous scenery that makes you feel like this was actually filmed in the 1930s.

The message of this movie is to keep trying, no matter what problems come your way. It shows how Quezon goes through so much trouble and problems, yet doesn't give up on bringing the Jewish refugees to the Philippines. You should know that there is some mild profanity and it deals with difficult themes.

I give this movie 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, as well as adults. This movie hits theaters January 24, 2020 so go watch, you won't regret it.

Reviewed by Leandro R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12.

This heroic, memorable, and passionate independent film embraces the heroism of Manuel Quezon during World War II. This bewildering and educational docudrama leads you back to 1939 to 1945 to experience the unimaginable reality of how the holocaust affected many. This film, directed by Matthew Rosen, shows the beauty of the Filipinos in rescuing Jews from Nazi Germany. In Quezon's Game, the actors created a realistic story, that urged me, as a viewer, to learn more.

Quezon's Game leads with the perspective of Filipino President Manuel Quezon and Aurora Quezon, his wife. In the film, the Filipino President is faced with a tough decision. A Chinese ambassador comes to Manuel seeking help for the Jewish refugees who need a place to go. Released January 24, 2020, this film marks the landmark 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. After being urged by his wife, Quezon finally comes to a decision.

The lead characters in this film are Manuel Quezon (Raymond Bagatsing), Aurora Quezon (Rachel Alejandro) and Alex Frieder (Billy Ray Gallion). The characters are based on actual characters and the actors portray them very believably. Their emotion and connection with each other makes it all seem plausible and real. My favorite part is President Quezon, his allies and family members accomplish their goal of rescuing the refugees and seeing them arrive in the Philippines. The victory is absolutely meaningful and emotional. Each character expresses bravery and strength.

This film has a little bit of profanity but there is no other inappropriate activity that kids might imitate. I love the scenery of the Philippines and the 1930s tropical vibe with beautiful scenery, colorful trees and beautiful tall, tower-like homes.

I give this film 4 � out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 15. It is available at select theaters January 24, 2020. Look for it.

Reviewed by Nathalia Marie J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm

Series: DVD, AGES 2-8
Description - In GIGANTOSAURUS, four dinosaur pals team up for big adventures around their community as they help others, solve problems, and learn about the mysterious Gigantosaurus that lives among them. Often it's Mazu's curiosity that leads the group's charge, and her friends Tiny, Bill, and Rocky eagerly join in her explorations. Whether it's returning a lost egg to its herd or saving an insect species from extinction, these dinosaurs never give up on a challenge.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I absolutely love this adorable animated series. It is unlike any other animated series I have seen. The dynamics between all the friends is interesting and it is so pleasing seeing how supportive they are of each other.

Gigantosaurus: The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is centered around four tiny dinosaur friends and their gigantic dinosaur friend, that have a love-hate relationship with. Each of the tiny dinosaurs has a different personality. One is brave, one gets scared but loves food, one's silly and one is smart. Together they form the perfect team and are able to solve any problem. Their friend Gigantosaurus doesn't talk, so Gigantosaurus isn't close with them. Gigantosaurus' size is beneficial to them because he is protect their herd, but his size can also cause some problems when he walks around. Therefore, the tiny dinosaurs still fear Gigantosaurus and they become cautious whenever he is near.

The voice actors for this series are all ages, to separate the adult dinosaurs from the innocent tiny ones. Even though there is this contrast between the adult voice actors and the younger voice actors, it is hard to tell the difference between the younger voice actors. Even so, the younger voice actors are quite remarkable. They are lively and portray various emotions well.

The animation is pretty detailed and very colorful. It is wonderful to see that the effort put into animating so many different types of dinosaurs, as well as other animals including birds, a rodent and an interesting walking fish. There is a lot of detail in their facial expressions which portray their emotions quite well.

My favorite part of this DVD is that it is so fun and educational. Hidden inside the plot are actual dinosaur facts that kids can learn, which is amazing.

There can be multiple messages in any episode, all of which are extremely valuable. It is great to see how encouraging the dinosaur friends are towards each other, as well as how all the characters are accepted. For example, Gigantosaurus is a large, scary-looking dinosaur, yet he is so caring, protective, and never means any harm. The tiny dinosaur who is considered to be the brave, adventurous one is encouraged by his friends to let out his soft, caring side. Most importantly, this DVD shows kids to look past the stereotypes and accept others, which I love.

Gigantosaurus: The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is a wonderful animated DVD collection which kids will absolutely love and learn a lot from. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 8. It comes out on DVD January 13, 2029, so make sure to pick it up!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like this DVD because it is very funny and teaches children different morals. Gigantosaurus, The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is approximately 90 minutes long and has eight 11 minute episodes including "Giganto's Laugh," "Frozen Giganto," "The Lost Egg," "The Island," "The Biggest Hero," "Treasure!," "Seeing Stars" and "Dinosia."

Gigantosaurus, The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! follows four dinosaur friends - Mazu, Tiny, Bill and Rocky - who team up to help animals in need and to solve their community's situations or problems. They also learn about the Gigantosaurus that live among them. Mazu is the leader of the group and her three friends follow her on different adventures. The graphics are neat and very colorful. The landscape is very detailed. The music is pleasant and appealing in each episode. The voice-overs match each dinosaur's personality.

One of my favorite episodes is "Treasure!" This episode is about the four dinosaur friends playing on a playground. Tiny says to get cave moss for Giganto before they leave. When Rocky gets the cave moss, he falls in some sticky water and Tiny pulls him out. Tiny notices a little shiny gold pebble. Mazu takes the gold pebble and brings it home. Eventually, almost all the dinosaurs are chasing each other for the pebble. The only one who's not chasing or fighting over the shiny gold pebble is Giganto. My other favorite episode is "The Biggest Hero," because it teaches an important lesson. This episode is about Rocky and Tiny fighting over who is the best hero. They compete by solving a ton of problems and trying to help everyone in need. At the end they are both heroes.

The moral of Gigantosaurus, The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is about coming together as friends and never give up on any challenge or obstacle that you might find on your path. These four dinosaur friends defeat every obstacle and challenge without giving up and help their community and other animals in need.

I give the DVE Gigantosaurus, The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 5 to 18, plus. This DVD is available now so look for it!

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Gigantosaurus, The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is not my favorite DVD, but I can see how younger kids would love it. It's not really a show that makes you laugh, but there are lots of lessons that can be learned from each episode. I really love how every character has its own unique personality.

Gigantosaurus, The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is an animated show based on the book by the same name by Johnny Duddle. The DVD contains eight episodes about four young dinosaurs that go on many adventures. They all work hard to face their own fears and solve problems together on their journeys. While they are on their quests, their frenemy, Gigantosaurus, who is the largest, fiercest dinosaur of all, makes appearances. Sometimes the friends help him and other times he helps them. The four young dinosaurs learn different things about Gigantosaurus during each adventure.

The main characters are Tiny (�ine Sunderland), Bill (Nicholas Holmes), Rocky (Dylan Schombing) and Mazu (Nahanni Mitchell), which are all dinosaurs. Even though they are all different species, they still treat each other like brothers and sisters. One of the things I felt lacking is more of the stories are not about Gigantosaurus, which is who the show is named for. I expected Gigantosaurus to be the main character, but he only makes a few appearances in each episode. The other characters talk about him a lot and they learn about him, but the four dinosaur friends are the main characters. My favorite part of each episode is how Tiny, Bill, Rocky and Mazu learn to overcome their fears. You can really see their true friendship whenever any of them needs a little help. They are always there to help each other throughout the day. I also love how they never give up.

The message in the movie is: everyone has a different talent that is useful for different things. You should appreciate others' differences and believe that their talent has a true purpose. Since this is a kid's movie, there isn't much for adults to look out for except parts where kids may imitate bragging and scaring people on purpose.

Gigantosaurus, The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! will have younger kids roaring with laughter. I rate it 4 out of 5 stomps and recommend it for ages 3 to 6. You can find it now on DVD.

Reviewed by Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

I absolutely love this adorable animated series. It is unlike any other animated series I have seen. The dynamics between all the friends is interesting and it is so pleasing seeing how supportive they are of each other.

Gigantosaurus: The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is centered around four tiny dinosaur friends and their gigantic dinosaur friend, that have a love-hate relationship with. Each of the tiny dinosaurs has a different personality. One is brave, one gets scared but loves food, one's silly and one is smart. Together they form the perfect team and are able to solve any problem. Their friend Gigantosaurus doesn't talk, so Gigantosaurus isn't close with them. Gigantosaurus' size is beneficial to them because he is protect their herd, but his size can also cause some problems when he walks around. Therefore, the tiny dinosaurs still fear Gigantosaurus and they become cautious whenever he is near.

The voice actors for this series are all ages, to separate the adult dinosaurs from the innocent tiny ones. Even though there is this contrast between the adult voice actors and the younger voice actors, it is hard to tell the difference between the younger voice actors. Even so, the younger voice actors are quite remarkable. They are lively and portray various emotions well.

The animation is pretty detailed and very colorful. It is wonderful to see that the effort put into animating so many different types of dinosaurs, as well as other animals including birds, a rodent and an interesting walking fish. There is a lot of detail in their facial expressions which portray their emotions quite well.

My favorite part of this DVD is that it is so fun and educational. Hidden inside the plot are actual dinosaur facts that kids can learn, which is amazing.

There can be multiple messages in any episode, all of which are extremely valuable. It is great to see how encouraging the dinosaur friends are towards each other, as well as how all the characters are accepted. For example, Gigantosaurus is a large, scary-looking dinosaur, yet he is so caring, protective, and never means any harm. The tiny dinosaur who is considered to be the brave, adventurous one is encouraged by his friends to let out his soft, caring side. Most importantly, this DVD shows kids to look past the stereotypes and accept others, which I love.

Gigantosaurus: The Biggest, Fiercest Dinosaur of All! is a wonderful animated DVD collection which kids will absolutely love and learn a lot from. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 8. It comes out on DVD January 13, 2029, so make sure to pick it up!

Reviewed by Jolleen M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Runtime: 90 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD

Series: DVD AGES 2-8
Description - Munki and Trunk: Ain't no mountain high enough, river wide enough, or banana big enough to tear these two apart! Our brave, curious monkey and big-hearted elephant live together in the jungle, as children imagine it: a playground with vines to swing on, trampoline mushrooms to bounce on, and a crew of jungle buddies to share endless adventures. Munki and Trunk explore their world together, facing fears, having fun and helping friends in a comedy adventure that s brim-full of heart, and built on a bedrock of friendship. Includes 8 tree-crashing, rock-smashing, water-splashing, fruit-mashing episodes!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Jungle Fun with Munki and Trunk is an adorable selection of stories compiled onto one DVD. The fun adventures that Munki and Trunk experience are simple, yet engaging to watch. These best friends sure know how to have a good time!

This compilation of episodes follows two main characters, Munki and Trunk, as they explore the world together. Along the way, these jungle animals learn lessons about nature, their friendship, as well as their own unique qualities. The protagonists quite often face their fears with one another and help them grow as individuals.

An interesting part of the world the characters live in is how they communicate through noises and actions, rather than actual words. Brent Dawes, the voice actor for Munki, and Alison Lambole, the voice actress for Trunk, are terrific at making the animal noises comprehensible for the audience. I love how bright and fun the animation in this show is. The jungle and characters all have a very playful vibe that keeps the audience super intrigued with each adventure. For example, each tree is animated with a particular texture that is incredible to look at. One issue I have with the DVD is how repetitive it is, but I believe that is effective for younger viewers. The two goofballs (Munki and Trunk) are amazing at bringing creativity to really simplistic scenarios. For example, the two characters are chasing a rainbow and decide to run through it. When going through the rainbow they change colors like a chameleon and then end up swimming up the rainbow.

Jungle Fun with Munki and Trunk has many lessons to teach viewers. My favorite is that each animal is their own individual, yet they all get along and coexist so well with one another. I think we can use this in our lives - to not worry about other people's perceptions of us, because we should all be kind to one another regardless. Another moral of these stories is how effective teamwork is in problem solving. It seems that every episode has some type of roadblock or obstacle to overcome, and only when the two friends stand together they can prevail over the problem.

I give Jungle Fun with Munki and Trunk 4 out of 5 stars and recommend for kids 2 to 8. It is available now on DVD, so go check it out!

by Brad M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - I like this DVD because it is cute and funny to watch. It makes me smile through all eight episodes, each around seven and a half minutes. Jungle Fun with Munki and Trunk DVD is approximately 60 minutes long. The adventurous episodes include: "Hot Stuff," "Rainbow Rising," "Bubble Trouble," "Copycat," "Hypno-Munki," "Boing Boing," "Sticky Situation," and "Midnight Run."

Jungle Fun with Munki and Trunk is about an elephant and a monkey who live together in the jungle. They have adventures that range from comedy to scary situations. Munki is a very curios and friendly monkey, while Trunk is a big-hearted, kind elephant. They are friends with everyone in the jungle and very nice to other animals in need. The jungle is their playground. The vines are their swings, the mushrooms are their trampolines to bounce on. The graphics are super amazing and the colors are very bright. The animation can be compared to Disney's animated movies. The forest looks so realistic; it looks like a real forest with real animals. The music and theme song are very pleasant and delightful to listen to. There is no dialog in this DVD.

My favorite episode is "Rainbow Rising," because it is very funny. It's about Munki and Trunk finding berries that makes their skin or fur look blue. They go around showing every one that they are blue. Then, the blue wears off and they get upset. Munki and Trunk soon see a rainbow. They play in the rainbow and soon it makes them change colors, so they are happy again.

There are multiple morals for different episodes but the overall moral is about accepting people for who they are, with their perfections and flaws. Nobody is perfect and true friendship is about accepting each other for who they are. Part of the lyrics from the theme songs says, "Ain't no mountain high enough, river to wide enough, or banana big enough to tear these two apart!" Munki and Trunk are completely different animals, but they are still inseparable best friends.

I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars because and recommend it for ages 3 to 18. Adults can enjoy this DVD with their children as well. It is available now so look for it

Reviewed by Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11.

I like this film for its animation, but I typically enjoy films that have dialogue (which this doesn't). The characters are cute, especially the hedgehog with his spunky attitude. I also like how colorful the scenes are. It is nice to see a change of scenery, since I'm often surrounded by snow, living in northern Minnesota.

This DVD is a collection of episodes about the jungle adventures of two friends--a monkey named Munki and an elephant named Trunk. They have fun together and meet new friends, but always seem to get in a little bit of trouble. They discover really cool things in the jungle and luckily can use many of the things they find to have some fun.

In one episode the elephant (Trunk) and monkey (Munki) start out being too hot, so they find different ways to cool off. They try to find shade and find themselves getting to a place that has snow, where they roll a huge snowball to try to get the hot spot cooler. At another time, they have fun changing colors and use grapes to turn purple, but then the rain washes away the colors. After finding a rainbow, they and other animals start changing colors. In their next adventure, Munki and Trunk find themselves in space because they chewed too much bubble gum. They start copying each other and get all the animals around them involved. Munki winds up hypnotizing all of the animals so they start acting like monkeys. In other adventures they find a plant that has a liquid that causes them to turn into Jell-O. They lose control over their bodies, while another liquid sticks to everything. There's an ostrich that appears throughout the film that is always trying to protect her eggs.

My favorite part of the film is the music, composed by Andries Smit, because it is very catchy. It's exciting and upbeat. It brings out the happiness of the characters. Some episodes on this DVD are a bit cheesy, but would probably appeal to a younger audience. I found myself laughing at one point when Munki and Trunk are squished in a bubble and get stuck in a tree. It is also fun to see all of the animals change colors and watch how excited they get. Listening to the animals just make noises gets a little annoying, but the animation, done by Infinite Studios, is great and gives lots of personality to the characters.

The message of the film is to trust your friends. Munki and Trunk show that you can get through almost any sticky situation by working together and using the problem as the solution.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend this DVD to ages 4 to 8. The DVD is available now, so look for it.

Reviewed by Cadence G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10
Runtime: 60 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 2-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ 6.99 Media: DVD


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