The KIDS FIRST! Endorsement category has 2034 titles

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KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
HOCUS POCUS 2 - DISNEY+
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 5-18
Description - A curious youngster moves to Salem, where he struggles to fit in before awakening a trio of diabolical witches that were executed in the 17th century.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Lock up your children and grab some salt just in case! Just in time for Halloween, the wicked Sanderson sisters are back in Hocus Pocus 2, the live-action, comedy sequel to the 1993 film Hocus Pocus. The musical performances in this film are to die for.

Hocus Pocus 2 follows the Sanderson sisters -- Winifred "Winnie" (Bette Midler), Sarah (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Mary (Kathy Najimy), as they seek revenge on the town that cast them away ... again. It's been 29 years since someone lit the Black Flame Candle and resurrected the 17th-century sisters, and they have a spell to settle. Three high-school students accidentally bring back the Sanderson Sisters to modern-day Salem and must figure out how to stop the child-hungry witches from wreaking havoc on Salem before dawn on All Hallow's Eve.

This film is perfect to get you in the Halloween spirit. In this sequel, we finally learn the origin of the Sanderson sisters, which helps us understand why they are who they are, why the sisters were banned from Salem as youngsters, and why they became involved in witchcraft. I love that the original actors who played the sisters reprised their roles here. With this film taking place 29 years later, it makes for hilarious moments watching the sisters get familiar with the "new town," such as watching them search for new beauty products to become younger and having young fans wanting to take selfies with them. The Sanderson's spell-bounding rendition and performance of "One Way of Another" (Hocus Pocus 2 Version) they sing to the residents at the festival is entertaining and original.

Hocus Pocus 2 is about friendship, sisterhood, and forgiveness. Many of their issues are resolved once the trio realizes what is most important to them and stop holding grudges. Even the high school teenagers have to realize they are better together than apart. This film also highlights the importance of reading labels and ALL of the instructions and spells; otherwise, you may miss an important warning. Parents should be aware of the reference to virgins that have to light the Black Flame Candle (but with a hilarious "parent-like" definition), which will probably have kids asking more questions.

Hocus Pocus 2 gets 4 out of 5 stars from me and I recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. I recommend watching the original film, since this one has plenty of references to Hocus Pocus. Hocus Pocus 2 premieres September 30, 2022, exclusively on Disney+.


Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SIDNEY - APPLE TV
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12 - 18
Description - From producer Oprah Winfrey and directed by Academy Award nominee Reginald Hudlin, this revealing documentary honors the legendary Sidney Poitier and his legacy as an iconic actor, filmmaker and activist at the center of Hollywood and the Civil Rights Movement. Featuring candid interviews with Denzel Washington, Halle Berry, Robert Redford, Lenny Kravitz, Barbra Streisand, Spike Lee and many more, the film is also produced by Derik Murray, in close collaboration with the Poitier family.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Sidney is an inspiring documentary that will ensure generations to come to love and appreciate the impact of Oscar award-winning actor, Mr. Sidney Poitier. The techniques used to tell his story, the events shared and the contributions to the film will keep viewers engaged. Described by producer Oprah Winfrey as one of the most extraordinary people she's ever met, Mr. Poitier would be proud of this documentary about his life.

Sidney reflects on the life and legacy of iconic actor, filmmaker, and activist, Sidney Poitier. Born and raised in the Bahamas, the film shows life for him once he arrived in the USA as a colored man and how he rose to become an icon and the first Black actor to win the Academy Award for Best Actor, despite racism and other obstacles. The documentary creatively tells Poitier's story in his own words from interviews from Ms. Winfrey's personal collection. Anecdotes from his family and heavy hitters such as Denzel Washington, Spike Lee, Halle Berry, and Oprah Winfrey herself included.

This film is truly a celebration of Mr. Poitier's legacy, the contributions he made, and a life well-lived. I love how the interview clips from the younger Poitier seamlessly blend together with the elder Poitier picking up the story. My favorite part of the documentary is the clip from Guess Who's Coming to Dinner when he says, "You think of yourself as a colored man. And I think of myself as a man," because it perfectly summarizes how he felt about himself and how he demanded other people to look at him. For me, this is what enabled him to break so many barriers and pave the way for other actors, including myself. The film does not hold back and includes some of Mr. Poitier's not-so-proud moments, which really help show the different sides of his complex life.

This film is about perseverance and being confident in who you are despite how the world sees you. I love that Mr. Poitier understood that he was not identified by his color and made sure everyone else knew it too, on and off-screen, even demanding scripts be rewritten to make his character stronger.

I rate Sidney 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. You can watch Sidney on Apple TV+ starting September 23, 2022.

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


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BOONIE BEARS: MONSTER PLAN
BOONIE BEARS: MONSTER PLAN - WOW NOW ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 5-12
Description - The crazy scientist, Doctor Rex Vector, and his hamster assistant, Mister Pete, return to Pine Tree Mountain with Vector's new, evil invention: a robo-monster complete with animal abilities. But first, Vector needs to collect these skills. He comes up with a power absorbing gadget, which he often disguises, in order to trap and steal abilities from the innocent animals. Vick, Briar and Bramble, along with other animal friends, must stand up against this "monster plan" of Vector's. It's going to be a fierce fight between wild animals and poaching villains.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Entertaining, kid-friendly, and adventurous are just the words to describe the animated film, Boonie Bears: Monster Plan! From adorable characters to an amazing animation style, young kids are sure to love watching.

Dr. Rex Victor, the evil and crazy scientist, and his hamster assistant are back in Boonie Bears: Monster Plan 3 with a new, evil invention: a robo-monster with animal abilities. They are wreaking havoc on Pine Tree Mountain with their "monster plan" and it's up to the bear brothers, Briar (Rick Jay Glen) and Bramble (Justin J. Wheeler) to stop them. With Dr. Victor trying to create a perfect monster, the Boonie Bears stand up against him, which sends the characters into endless adventures.

This is a great film that's sure to keep young viewers entertained. Boonie Bears: Monster Plan is the third installment of the Boonie Bears: Monster Plan movie series. This is the most popular Chinese kid's television show and it's cool that it not only has been adapted into a film franchise but also is translated into English for non-Chinese speakers to watch and enjoy. I love the animation style as well as the voice acting which is very soft and cute, just like you would expect from a kids' show. My favorite part of this film is when Briar, Bramble and Logger Vick help save Dr. Rex Victor by dressing up as him and distracting the Badger from chasing Victor.

There are multiple messages of Boonie Bears: Monster Plan. The film shows how important friendships are and that they are something worth saving, because a friend is someone who is there for you and always cares for your well-being. It also highlights the importance of teamwork and how, when you work together, you can accomplish more, whether it's to help someone or to accomplish a joint project.

Boonie Bears: Monster Plan gets 4 out of 5 stars from me and, since it is very kiddy, I recommend it for ages 5 to 12. You can watch Boonie Bears: Monster Plan on digital platforms and DVD starting October 4, 2022.

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

What do you get when you combine a mad scientist, a crazed hamster sidekick, a pack of brave bears, and a forest full of animal friends? You get a lighthearted, adorable, funny animated comedy. Boonie Bears: Monster Plan is quirky and fun to watch.

The storyline follows Doctor Rex Vector and his dedicated hamster comrade, Mister Pete, as they set out on a vicious mission to create a robot monster. The wicked duo has a brilliant idea to steal the animal abilities from the forest animals and give their powers to the robo-monster. Led by the bears, Briar and Bramble, the animals join forces to prevent Doctor Rex Vector from stealing their special skills and taking over the forest they call home.

As a lover of animated films, I must admit that this cast presents some of the most unique and comical voices. For example, you might expect the bears would have deep baritone voices. Ironically, the bear characters in this film have high-pitched, squeaky voices; this makes them fun to watch. The storyline follows bear best friends, Briar (Rick Jay Glen) and Bramble (Justin J. Wheeler), as they team up with the other animals to defeat the evil scientist. This dynamic duo makes an excellent team and is incredibly entertaining to watch. They are best pals, but they are more like brothers. It is as if one bear always knows what the other is thinking without them having to say anything. Their connection ultimately helps save the day. My favorite part of the film is when the animals have an intense fight scene with Doctor Rex Vector, Mister Pete, and a weapon that fires jelly and ice. Despite a determined Doctor Rex Vector and Mister Pete, they are no match for the forest animals. The fight between the forest animals and the wicked villains kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time.

This film empowers viewers to never accept defeat. Doctor Rex Vector is relentless in his mission to steal the forest animals' special skills, but they persevere and never give up. The story reminds us that, sometimes, the only way to be victorious is to work with others. The animals alone are not strong enough to fight Doctor Vector and Mister Pete, but together they are a mighty force.

I give Boonie Bears: Monster Plan 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 9; it is perfect for family movie night. Boonie Bears: Monster Plan releases on VOD and DVD October 4, 2022.

By Hanadie K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Boonie Bears: Monster Plan is a fun and upbeat romp through the forest! There are lots of fun forest friends and many loveable characters to get to know in this wildly popular animated series. You don't need to have watched the previous episodes to fall in love with these furry friends and join their adventures saving their home.

The story follows bear pals Briar and Bramble, along with their animal friends, who must stand together to defeat the "Monster Plan" of crazy scientist Doctor Rex Vector and his hamster assistant Mister Pete. Rex Vector returns to Pine Tree Mountain with his newest invention, a robo-monster, made with various animal abilities. Mister Pete is sent on a mission by his master to steal the best abilities from different animals and the Boonie Bears have their work cut out for them to defeat Rex Vector's technological wizardry and save their friends.

The animation in Boonie Bears: Monster Plan is really superb. I love the detail and the movement of all the various characters, as well as the beautiful forest backgrounds. There is so much detail and movement in all of the character's facial expressions. The forest scenes are so beautifully depicted that you can see each leaf and appreciate the depth of field. The voice actors in this series each take on multiple roles and really bring each character to life through dialogue and all their funny sounds. The music directors Kate Qin and Zhiping Li bring in a fun and upbeat tempo to the series as well.

The message of this series is that you can choose to do the right thing and follow your instincts. It is important to pay attention and learn your lessons while supporting your friends. However, friendship can be complicated and it is interesting to watch the forest friendships evolve.

I rate Boonie Bears: Monster Plan 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 8. These new episodes will be released on October 4, 2022.

By Selene W., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 19.99 Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
This title is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
HONK
HONK - VISION FILMS
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 7-18
Description - The power of love shines in this heartwarming tale of f friendship and inspiration between an unlikely duo. Cheryl inadvertently befriends a mourning goose, Honk, while recycling in the local park. As the budding friendship blossoms and Cheryl seeks Honk a new home, he becomes a viral sensation capturing the hearts and minds of millions.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Honk is incredibly sweet and heartwarming documentary. The subjects are interesting and the story is exciting, due to its oddness. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The story follows a woman who forms a friendship with a goose during the pandemic and ends up getting over 80K followers on Instagram.

Cheryl's story of meeting this goose during the pandemic is so unexpected and slightly crazy. The idea that she met Honk the good during a time when we were all social distancing and formed a relationship with him is endearing - both of them needed a friend, someone to be with. The cinematography is very good, keeping things exciting while also staying simple. A lot of this film is filmed on a cell phone, which works just fine. I love the locations, especially those at the park. And I like how Cheryl added little hearts on the side of her phone videos - which worked particularly well for attracting attention on social media. Her videos on social media are absolutely adorable. This story is so unusual, and Cheryl's motivations are honest and pure. When someone tells her that he must be a domestic goose, not a wild one, she is concerned about returning him to an appropriate environment and feels that she needs to find his mate. Honk is a character in his own right as well, something not always explored in the usual animal documentaries. Honk is the best "pandemic pal" a girl could ask for. He's safe, he's devoted to her, and he has a charming personality. There are some sad aspects to this documentary, such as when Honk dies two years later which Cheryl tells Honk's social media followers on Instagram, accompanied by sad music and clips of better times.

The message of this film is about the importance of bringing love and hope into people's lives - whether through a human or non-human. If you show love, you get love!

I give Honk 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. Bring your tissues because Honk's passing is a reminder to us all how life is eternal. By Sandrine A. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Such a wholesome joy of a film is hard to come by. Honk should be required watching for those who feel like they're losing faith in the goodness of humanity and the beauty of companionship. Beautiful, raw emotion is captured in a mix of videos that were either collected from social media or filmed by the camera team, but beyond the technical bits of the film, the plot is what shines through. Especially for animal-lovers, this is a great watch.

Honk is a remarkable tale of unlikely companionship. Dallas native Cheryl Allison inadvertently befriends a loud, chatty goose she names Honk; she realizes he is mourning the loss of a loved one and their bond grows deeper. As the friendship blossoms, Cheryl seeks to find Honk a new home and he becomes a viral sensation across nations. The beautiful relationship between the two (not owner and pet but two equal friends) is wonderful to watch.

The direction and editing by Cheryl Allison are beautifully-executed. What's really nice is that the subject of the documentary is the same person who directs and edits it; this means that she has been able to choose the most moving portions of footage and cut it together. I also love how the choice of music accentuates the mood of the more emotional scenes; the lyrics from the credits -- "think about where we have been, the joy we shared with friends who cared, all the things we've seen" -- were especially touching as they summarized the theme of the film. I like the contrast between the footage taken by the camera team and how formal and traditional it feels compared to the footage taken by Cheryl, which is more fun and informal.

Honk promotes finding those who support you and, in turn, helping others, whether animal or human, in times of difficulty. The compassion exhibited by Cheryl in this film also serves to push the message that we should care for animals, even those we wouldn't consider domesticated or "pets," because they too have highs and lows in their lives like we do.

I give Honk 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 18, plus adults. Honk releases November 15, 2022 on digital and DVD.< p>By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Honk is a heartwarming documentary that follows the friendship between director and editor, Cheryl Allison, and a lovable goose. She successfully shows viewers how her friendship with a goose impacted her life. At a time when everything was uncertain in the world, this goose was the "honk heard 'round the world." He was able to reach out, in spite of social distancing constraints, and spread happiness to others.

This documentary is set during the COVID pandemic, when social distancing regulations were in effect. While on a walk Cheryl notices a goose approaching her. She names him Honk and they become instant friends. Cheryl decides to record her time with Honk and her videos and posts with him go viral on social media. She receives word from her friend, Mary Beth Purdy that Honk is a domestic goose and is in danger. Now Cheryl is on a mission to help save her goose friend from a harmful environment, predators and the new risks that social media has brought to him.

This documentary is touching and beautiful. My favorite scene is when Cheryl goes back to the pond the day after she first meets Honk and records herself calling to him. Honk immediately recognizes her voice and swims to her. She talks to him and he responds with his honking sounds. This shows how attached Honk was to her from the start. The film is a mix of interviews, zoom meetings and videos of Cheryl with Honk. The added footage of her initial recordings with Honk are delightfully entertaining. It gives viewers a better understanding of Cheryl and Honk's friendship and the bond they create with each other as time progresses. The information about animals in the film, by experts Mary Beth Purdy and Kathy Rogers, is insightful and adds depth to the understanding of caring for these types of animals. In addition, the music at the end of the documentary fits well with the theme.

The message of this film is about love and the connections you make with others. Love and a need for companionship is what drove Honk and Cheryl together. It then drove her to protect him. While watching, we also gain a better understanding of what animals need, the importance of protecting animals, and what we can contribute to help keep these animals safe.

I give Honk 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. Honk releases November 15, 2022 on digital platforms and DVD.

By Carlee S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17
Runtime: 46 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 7-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: VIDEO


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
AMERICAN DREAM AND OTHER FAIRY TALES, THE
AMERICAN DREAM AND OTHER FAIRY TALES, THE - CHICAGO MEDIA PROJECT
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12-18
Description - Abigail Disney looks at America's dysfunctional and unequal economy and asks why the American Dream has worked for the wealthy, yet is a nightmare for people born with less. Using her family's story, Disney explores how this systemic injustice took hold and imagines a way toward a more equitable future.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Have you ever wondered if the cast members and staff at the "happiest place on Earth" are actually happy themselves? Well, The American Dream and Other Fairy Tales is the documentary you need to watch! It's eye-opening, and shocking, and exposes the wealth inequality among employees at Disneyland and other companies in the United States.

The American Dream and Other Fairy Tales follows philanthropist and co-director, Dr. Abigail Disney, the great-niece of Walt Disney and the granddaughter of Roy O. Disney, as she embarks on a journey to bring awareness to pay gaps between the rich and poor workers at companies such as Disney. The story starts in 2018 when Dr. Disney is contacted by Disneyland employees for help because they are struggling to afford food, housing, and even cover medical expenses.

This documentary uses videos of protests, court proceedings, cast member interviews, and experiences to tell the stories of how employees that help create the magic at Disneyland don't have fair and equal pay and how that needs to change. My favorite part of this documentary is seeing how all the workers featured were willing to share their stories, rally, protest, and even host food drives for workers to help make a difference. While most would be scared to make a film like this, I love the bravery it took for Dr. Disney to speak up and make these issues public, especially since the fight is against the company that bears her name and family legacy. It's a documentary that is sure to stun its audience.

The American Dream and Other Fairy Tales highlights how companies must have fair and equal pay for all employees. It's not right for people to work hard to make CEOs and others rich at a company and still have to be on food stamps and homeless. While there isn't anything for parents to look out for, I wouldn't recommend showing it to young viewers to avoid ruining the magic of Disney for them.

While the topics covered in The American Dream and Other Fairy Tales are very serious, somehow Dr. Disney and co-director Kathleen Hughes courageously deliver this bold film in a very easy-to-understand and entertaining format. I give it 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. This inspiring documentary will debut first in Orlando, Florida, starting on September 16, 2022. It will be available in additional markets and video-on-demand on September 23, 2022.

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


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DISNEY PRINCESS: BEYOND THE TIARA
DISNEY PRINCESS: BEYOND THE TIARA - EPIC INK
Series: BOOK, AGES 12-18
Description - Everyone knows the Disney Princess characters, but how did they become the cultural icons we know today? From the Princesses Walt Disney and his artists brought to the screen in the 20th century, such as Snow White and Aurora, to the recent additions such as Moana, Tiana and Rapunzel, each Disney Princess character's influence has expanded beyond their original film. Each of their unique, individual stories create a fabric with the power to inspire our imaginations, spark social conversations, and empower us. Featured Disney Princesses include Moana, Merida, Rapunzel, Tiana, Mulan, Pocahontas, Jasmine, Belle, Ariel, Aurora, Cinderella, Snow White. Organized by themes of origins and inspirations, re-imaginings, toys and collectibles, fashion, music, parks, fandom, and more, the book features memorabilia and interviews with Disney historians, directors, voice talent and fans. Explore the different eras, influences, and legacies of the Princesses with Disney Legends such as Jodi Benson (voice of Ariel in The Little Mermaid and author of the book's foreword), Lea Salonga (the singing voice behind two Princesses, Jasmine and Mulan) and composer Alan Menken.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Disney Princess: Beyond the Tiara is an enlightening book that gives you true insight into character design and animation beyond the ball gowns, princes, and tiaras. The reader learns about the process of Disney filmmaking from the steps of animating the characters to the fashion designers behind the classic "princess dresses."

Author Emily Zemler engages the reader with an abundance of colorful and appealing photos. These images help you recognize the immense amount of work you never knew was necessary to create your favorite princesses. My favorite part of this book is the chapter on the fashion designers and artists who worked tirelessly to create perfect dresses that matched each character and their personality.

This book would be a fascinating read for Disney-loving families or teens and adults. Each chapter of Disney Princess: Beyond the Tiara describes a different element of this process including animation, music, fashion, marketing, and merchandising, as well as its famous theme park, Disneyland. Readers will enjoy learning about the development of animation from the early 1930s with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to the early twenty-first century with popular films such as Moana and Encanto. It even offers the reader insight into how classic animated films have been adapted into modern live-action movies, many with actors we all know and love.

By including pictures, quotes, illustrations and memoirs written firsthand by Disney voice stars, every type and age of reader can easily engage in the storytelling. Although this book contains positive information about the Disney Princess franchise, it does not address the issues the company faced with complaints such as princesses having an unrealistic body image or the lack of diversity.

I give Disney Princess: Beyond the Tiara 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Kids under 12 would benefit from reading it with their parents. It will be available starting September 20, 2022, at online retailers and in bookstores.

By Nyara A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ 40 Media: Book ISBN # 978-0760373620


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ANDOR
ANDOR - WALT DISNEY STUDIOS DISTRIBUTION
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 12-18
Description - The series explores a new perspective from the Star Wars galaxy, focusing on Cassian Andor's journey to discover the difference he can make. The series brings forward the tale of the burgeoning rebellion against the Empire and how people and planets became involved. It's an era filled with danger, deception and intrigue where Cassian will embark on the path that is destined to turn him into a rebel hero.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Perhaps the best Star Wars spin-off series so far, Andor's superb script, visuals and performances will grip you throughout its duration. The force is indeed strong with this dark, grounded show, which comfortably departs from the Star Wars formula in significant ways.

A gritty, layered prequel to the highly popular (and also prequel) movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Andor follows Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) on a five-year journey as he grows from a revolution-averse, shifty, cynical con man to a selfless, Empire-defying rebel against the Galactic Empire. When confronted with enemy after enemy, Andor continually proves himself to be the perfect sort of spy, revolutionary and killer.

Thank you, Tony Gilroy, for creating this series. It's simply incredible. Driven by mood, Andor seems more like a crime drama or a Ridley Scott sci-fi film than a true Star Wars film. Though the first two episodes are a bit slow and offer pretty low-stakes, with lots and lots of exposition, Luna pushes the series, one of his best performances yet, to excellence. Episode three, especially, is WOW. His power to add nuance to what starts as a one-dimensional personality -- surly dude disillusioned with his surroundings -- is remarkable. We're lucky he reprised his role. Adding a tiny note here, I love how Luna keeps his native Mexican accent in all his portrayals of Cassian Andor. It adds something to the role! The plot of Andor is simple enough, and this allows for both the trademark character development and world-building of the Star Wars universe and also the slow reveal of the Rebel Alliance forming. Stellan Skarsg�rd's portrayal of Luthen Rael is subtle without being dry, and he helps elevate the show and make it even more riveting. The production quality, much like the acting, is off the charts; every scene is engineered to be utterly stunning. Half the time the feeling of dread is offset by, "oh my goodness, look at the sky." All of this -- the new tone, new feel, new style -- might be too different for some, but the utter novelty is to be appreciated. Finally, the beautiful score by Nicholas Britell adds so much to the retro-futurism of Andor and makes the performances pop even more.

Andor promotes fighting for good causes, allowing yourself to be taken by passion, and leading others for the greater good. Beyond these lessons, it's also a master class (tonally, visually, sonically) for filmmakers playing in the sandbox. There are some sexual undertones in the first episode and violent scenes.

I give Andor 4.5 stars out of 5 and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Andor releases on Disney+ September 21, 2022.

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Andor, a prequel to Rogue One, is the latest Star Wars-inspired series to debut to much enthusiasm from expectant fans. Despite some exciting cameos, though, the series lacks the boldness of its predecessors.

Andor follows Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), before he was known as Captain of the Rebellion. When he murders two officers and has an arrest warrant on his head, he meets Luthen (Stellan Skarsg�rd) who offers Cassian the opportunity of a lifetime: to join the early formations of the Rebellion against the Empire. Viewers will recognize the character of Cassian from Rogue One. In the film, he's witty, smart and callous. In his own series, however, he's described as being a playboy and smooth talker, though in many ways he doesn't really live up to that description; it's rare that we see him engaging or displaying these qualities. The series has some strong points. The CGI is extremely realistic, transporting viewers to never-before-seen planets. The fight scenes keep you on your toes, always waiting for the next blaster battle. In the past several years, Disney has produced outstanding and mind-blowing Star Wars shows like Obi Wan Kenobi and The Mandalorian. Both series have deep connections to the Star Wars universe and set the bar high for upcoming Star Wars projects. Audiences can decide if Andor meets the expectations set up by those series or not.

The theme of the show is to fight for what you believe in. In the early days of the Rebellion, there weren't many fighters for the cause, and it was a risky gamble to join up against the Empire. Cassian takes the risk to fight against oppression and to take a stand.

I give Andor 3 out of 5 stars, and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. It begins streaming on Disney+ September 21, 2022.

Andor is the latest Star Wars story set between the events of Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith and Rogue One -- it's fast-paced, gritty and compelling. Yet even with its fast pace, it feels like it's slowly building to a greater conflict over the course of the season.

Andor takes place after the fall of the Jedi, but before the events of the original trilogy. The show follows Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), long before he'll become a hero of the humble rebellion and sacrifice himself to procure the plans to the Death Star. In this series, both the heroic rebels and villainous empire are at very different places from where will eventually see them. Andor, after an encounter with some imperial soldiers that goes wrong, needs to get off-world and fast. After saying his goodbyes, he meets a man (Stellan Skarsgard) who invites him to fight the empire head on. Andor accepts, and he's thrust into a whole new way of living with secrets, danger and espionage.

Andor focuses its lens away from lightsaber duels and feuds between galactic royalty and onto the beginnings of a rebellion and how one guy plays a small part in the building of that grander rebellion. Diego Luna is good as the title character. He takes a relatively small character in Rogue One and makes him feel worthy of his own show. Andor's a little more naive and curious here, captivated by the minutiae of where and to whom his journey to rebellion takes him, but there's that same chip-on-his-shoulder cynicism that we saw in Rogue One. Andor doesn't seem as accessible to younger audiences as the other Star Wars stories and is probably best watched with the family--even with its share of comedic droids and puppet-like creatures, it's no theme park ride. There is less pure wonder imbued in it, but in Andor's case, it's a feature, not a drawback. Andor's a different kind of Star Wars story, largely set on the ground, about what people do when they find themselves under the thumb of oppressors and they don't have a lightsaber on hand.

I wouldn't say Andor has a lesson, per se, as much as it's about what Star Wars has always been about from the perspective of the rebels: Fight for what you believe in like you've got nothing else to fight for.

I give Andor 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend if for ages 12 to 18, for some violence and intense action. Andor's first three episodes release on Disney+ on September 21, 2022.

By Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17

Andor is the latest action-packed sci-fi series in the Star Wars franchise. This twelve-episode series will entertain old and new Star Wars fans alike, as it did me.

Andor reveals the origin story behind Captain Cassian Andor (Diego Luna). It tells the story of the key events that molded Cassian into who he is, including the struggles from his childhood as well as the people who change his life leading up to Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

This series is a prequel to the Star Wars movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, so it's unnecessary to watch anything else in the franchise in order to understand what's happening. Unlike the other films in the Star Wars series, it doesn't jump right into a world we know or connect it to other films or series in this franchise, which gives it more freedom to explore this part of the universe. That being said, Andor has a complex plot that seems confusing and slow at first, but picks up excitement as the episodes continue. I viewed the first four episodes (out of twelve to be released), so I only got a small taste of this. The production value of this series lives up to the high standards of a Lucasfilm production as the sets and costumes transport you into the iconic galaxy from a long time ago, far, far away. I enjoyed how the audience gets to see a whole new part of the galaxy that we are unfamiliar with and know little about. However, I feel like the characters and the script fall a bit short. I don't feel as much of a connection with the main character as I would want to keep me engaged. My favorite performance comes from the new character, B2EMO (Dave Chapman). B2EMO is a quirky droid with a unique personality that is sure to become a fan favorite.

The messages of Andor are to stand up against injustice and protect what you care for. Be aware that this series has 0depictions of violence and death.

I give Andor 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. This series launches on Disney+ September 21, 2022.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
FISHTALES: SEAL WORLD
FISHTALES: SEAL WORLD - WOW NOW ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - Alba the seal is leaving Fishtale Reef to go to Seal School in the big bay! All her friends in Fishtale Reef work around the clock to prepare the best farewell party for the adorable seal in Fishtales: Seal World! The latest in the acclaimed Fishtales series. Available on IN demand, DISH, and Comcast. Exclusively streaming for FREE on the FamilyEntertainment.TV app - available on Roku, Amazon and Apple TV.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Fishtales: Seal World: Seal World is a very sweet show. It's geared for a younger audience than me, but I believe it will be a favorite among younger kids. Parents will like it too as aspects of it are educational.

The latest in the acclaimed Fishtales: Seal World series, the storyline of Fishtales: Seal World: Seal World follows Fifi, a bubbly pink fish, and her best friend Lily, a whale, who get news about one of their friends moving away. They go visit the Magic Pearl who is the only one that can confirm if this is true and if so, why? It turns out that Alba the seal is leaving Fishtale Reef to go to Seal School in the big bay! Fifi and Lily struggle with keeping the secret, but once the secret comes out they decide that they're going to throw Alba the best surprise farewell party ever.

I really like the way Fishtales: Seal World: Seal World quietly sneaks in life lessons threaded throughout the storyline. It's smart and yet subtle; perfect for a kids' TV show. I love how vibrant and colorful the entire show is - the backgrounds and the characters -- both in looks and personality. I also appreciate how detailed the characters are. Fifi is a fish and, obviously, her parents are the same type of fish, but you can clearly tell who is who because of the slight changes in color, eyelashes or headpieces. I really like how they paid so much attention to these small things. The same applies to the backgrounds. There are two rooms that look almost exactly the same, but have small differences, barely noticeable, but enough so you can appreciate it.

The message is that you have to be happy for others and want the best for them. Lily and Fifi are obviously sad that Alba is leaving, but at the same time, are happy she gets to live out her dream of going to Seal School. There are some really nice lessons for young children in the film - touching topics like secrets, not getting what you want and similar.

I give Fishtales: Seal World: Seal World 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 to 8. Fishtales: Seal World: Seal World will be available on VOD and DVD beginning September 6, 2022. Go check it out!

By Alma K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Fishtales: Seal World is a film that really shows how people, or fish, can care for each other. It really speaks to my heart; what makes it amazing is how it has so much love and support for all the characters.

This show is about a fish named Fifi and a baby whale named Lily. They find out that Alba, the seal, is leaving and plan a surprise party for her called "Operation: Secret Party." All of this has to be kept secret from Alba the seal.

There are so many cool things to talk about in Fishtales: Seal World. First, there are so many minor characters, which is so amazing. Throughout the show the main characters, Fifi and Lily meet many diverse characters that help them out and give them advice. Second, there's even a moment where the characters of the show break the fourth wall and address the audience. For example, it asks kids to figure out a word starting with the letter "P" that means: asking nicely. Third, the animation is quite good and differs from other animation I've ever seen; it really showcases the marine life in a different, more kid friendly way. The voice actors, starting with Sarah Taylor, KJ Schrock and Simon Hill, are all so impressive. It can often be hard to figure out how a sea creature might speak, yet these actors manage to pull it off. The voice actor for Tickles, a starfish, has a very bland animated face but the voice actor really brings him to life by giving him more excitement and joy than his face portrays.

The message of this film is that secrets should stay secrets, especially if they're not yours to tell. We should always trust and care for each other.

I give Fishtales: Seal World 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 8, plus adults. It is available now on DVD and digital.


Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ 19.99 Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ORDER OF THE NIGHT JAY: THE FOREST BECKONS
ORDER OF THE NIGHT JAY: THE FOREST BECKONS - AMAZON.COM
Series: BOOK, AGES 8-12
Description - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Making friends can be hard for a nervous bear, even at summer camp. But Frank's about to discover a mystery... and the camp needs him to save the day!

Frank is perhaps the most un-bear-like bear Camp Jay Bird has ever seen. Actually, he's probably the ONLY bear Camp Jay Bird has ever seen. And there are tons of bugs, he's getting picked on, and he can't seem to earn a single badge! But there's Ricky, an excitable little raccoon who shares Frank's love of Mega Bunny comics. But Ricky's friendship might be more than Frank can handle. After breaking camp rules, getting lost in the woods, and discovering ancient secrets about the long-forgotten Order of the Night Jay, how will Frank explain all this to his dad?
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Order of the Night Jay: The Forest Beckons is a heartwarming graphic novel that shares a tale of friendship, bravery, and discovery. Through detailed and colorful graphics, the reader journeys with a bear named Frank during his first experience at summer camp. My favorite parts of the book are the letters that Frank sends to his father describing his daily adventures.

Order of the Night Jay follows the protagonist Frank, a shy, anxious bear, who is just looking for some friends. Because he is the only big animal at camp he feels out of place. Teased due to his size, he worries whether he will ever fit in. When he meets Ricky, an extroverted and bubbly raccoon, his whole outlook begins to change. On an overnight trip, the two friends discover a secret code. What does this code mean? And most importantly, where will this code lead them?

Author Jonathan Schnapp engages the reader with earthy and original graphics. Even though the characters are animals, the drawing style makes their emotions relatable and their facial expressions almost human. By using letters home, we get a glimpse into Frank's mind. And Frank writes his own comic, within the comic, so we are able to see the creativity behind his quiet and shy fa�ade. The words he uses are ones we have used or could easily relate to. Each of the characters has a unique backstory and graphics, too.

This book is perfectly suited for any child who is about to start something new, like a new school year, a new activity after school, or even going to summer camp for the first time. The graphics are most appropriate for elementary school-aged children. The story could start a little more quickly, so I would encourage readers to keep going because the story gets good!

I give Order of the Night Jay: The Forest Beckons 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 12. It is available September 20, 2022 at online retailers and in bookstores.


Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: Book


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MAIKA: THE GIRL FROM ANOTHER GALAXY
MAIKA: THE GIRL FROM ANOTHER GALAXY - WELL GO USA INC.
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 8-12
Description - After losing his mother to illness and his best friend to an unexpected move, a young boy discovers a crashed spaceship and makes a new friend with awesome powers (although she does need a little help with her earthly social skills). Together, they embark on a zany, fun-filled adventure while taking on the bad guys and helping Maika find her way home.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Maika: The Girl from Another Galaxy is an adorable and impeccably-filmed story of friendship and exploration. It's the perfect sci-fi adventure for the whole family this September.

Maika: The Girl from Another Galaxy follows the story of Hung (Phu Truong Lai), a young boy in Vietnam. After Hung's mother Hang (Elyse Dinh) passes away from lung disease, and he loses his best friend My to an unexpected move to Saigon, he discovers a crashed spaceship and makes a new friend, Maika (Chu Diep Anh), with powers. Together, they embark on fun-filled adventures while taking on various villains like the head of an aeronautical company before helping Maika find her way back to her home planet.

Ham Tran's direction truly ties this film together; even though the film is based on a Czechoslovakian TV series that became a cultural sensation in Vietnam in the 1980s and '90s, it comes across as an original film. My favorite part of the film was the special effects, as I think it should be in a sci-fi film. When Maika does her "magic," purple beams emanate from her fingers; it is beautiful! The performances by Chu Diep Anh as Maika and Hung by Phu Truong Lai steal the show; I was moved by Lai's emotive performance in the initial scenes where his mother is hospitalized, and An's chirpy, bubbly character stole my heart.

Maika: The Girl from Another Galaxy promotes finding your own adventures, fostering positive friendships, and overall being a good, virtuous person. There is one scene to watch out for where Maika, unaware of Earthly social norms about clothing, pounces on Hung naked; she is shown from the neck up, though.

I give Maika: The Girl from Another Galaxy 4 stars out of 5 and recommend it for ages 8 to 12. Maika: The Girl from Another Galaxy debuts on digital outlets on September 6, 2022.

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
GUTSY
GUTSY - APPLE TV
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 12-18
Description - very empowering show for women that highlights household-name heroes and well as several unrecognized heroes
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - See youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Gutsy is a documentary series worth the watch! It's a very empowering show for women that highlights household-name heroes and well as several unrecognized heroes.

Gutsy follows former first lady Hillary Clinton and her daughter, Chelsea Clinton, as they meet "gutsy" women and answer the question: what it means to be "gutsy". They share the interesting and inspiring stories of admirable women throughout eight episodes.

The documentary is based on The New York Times' best-selling book, The Book of Gutsy Women: Favorite stories of Courage and Resilience, authored by Hillary and Chelsea Clinton. Some of the episodes include Gutsy Women Have the Last Laugh, Gutsy Women Refuse Hate, and Gutsy Women Seek Justice. Other topics explored include women being rebellious, taking leaps of faith, exhibiting their strengths and motherhood. It's fascinating to hear stories about people you didn't know outside of movies and shows, or even at all. Some of the interviewees include Dr. Jane Goodall, Gloria Steinem, Megan Thee Stallion, Goldie Hawn, Amy Schumer, Kate Hudson, Wanda Sykes, along with many more accomplished women. Hillary and Chelsea Clinton are such natural hosts and make it easy to enjoy watching them.

The main messages are to be "gutsy" and to not let your hard times define you. There is profanity, and mature topics are discussed.

I give Gutsy 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. This movie comes out on Apple TV+ September 9, 2022.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
IVY + BEAN
IVY + BEAN - NETFLIX
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 5-18
Description - Two unlikely friends, the loud and fearless Bean, and the thoughtful and quiet Ivy. Yet the two discover that an adventure can reveal that even seemingly different people can become the best of friends.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Ivy + Bean is a three part movie series based on the iconic Ivy + Bean children's book series. Full of talented actors and a nostalgic plot, everyone can find something they enjoy in Ivy + Bean. Buckle your seat belts, because Ivy and Bean are two best friends that take the audience on a crazy ride.

Ivy + Bean is about two young girls with very different personalities. Ivy (Keslee Blalock) is quiet and reserved, while Bean (Madison Skye) is loud, outgoing, and a risk taker. At first, the two want nothing to do with each other. But once they realize they have a similar imagination, they become best friends and find themselves on plenty of adventures.

Ivy + Bean is a great family friendly movie to watch when you're just looking for some fun. The set design of Ivy + Bean is very well done, especially Ivy and Bean's houses. Both houses and the girls' rooms have a different tone, which highlights the differences between the two. Ivy has a lot of spells and ingredients in her room, but it is also neat. Meanwhile, Bean's room is animal themed and relatively more chaotic than Ivy's. This displays how Ivy is more reserved and organized and Bean is more wild and daring. We can also find examples of descriptive backgrounds in Ivy and Bean's backyards. Ivy has this nice area she calls her secret garden with paper butterflies and flowers that she takes Bean to. However, Bean mostly stays in her backyard with holes that she's dug and her tree houses. Props to the set and production designers for using these elements to expand the story. Having too many movies can sometimes backfire if they're long and don't have an interesting plot. However, the three Ivy + Bean movies have perfect continuity and each one brings something new. My personal favorite is the second movie, The Ghost That Had to Go, because of the involvement of all of the new characters and the craziness of trying to get rid of the ghost.

The message of Ivy + Bean is that having a big imagination and being willing to try new things can lead you to greatness. Both Ivy and Bean were hesitant before becoming friends. When they finally tried to see eye to eye, they realized that they have a lot in common, and could be a better duo than they thought.

I give Ivy + Bean 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18. You can find all three Ivy + Bean movies on Netflix on September 2, 2022. So make sure you check it out!

By Maica N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, Age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SURFSIDE GIRLS
SURFSIDE GIRLS - APPLE TV
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 12-18
Description - Follow Jade and Sam, who are psyched to spend their summer riding the waves and catching the rays. That is until they meet a ghost. The girls dive head first into a mystery about a pirate ship and a cursed treasure.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Surfs up! Perfect for the end of summer break, Surfside Girls is here with a great summer-ending, wild adventure that will take you on a magical, action-packed journey with plenty of secrets to uncover. Based on the best-selling young middle school graphic novel of the same name, this new Apple TV+ series will have you wanting to relive summer all over again.

Surfside Girls follows best friends, Samantha "Sam" Torres (YaYa Gosselin) and Jade Lee (Miya Cech), who are looking forward to surfing and enjoying the summer weather. That is until Sam finds a "magic" coin that leads them on a supernatural, mysterious adventure, complete with a pirate ghost, cursed treasure and a booby-trapped room. Also, the friends are slowly drifting apart because Jade is meeting new friends and maturing faster than Sam. Will they solve the mystery and save their friendship?

Surfside Girls will inspire viewers to go on their own adventures and discover more about their own towns. The main characters are Sam and Jade. Sam is adventurous and slightly care-free, while Jade is the more serious one. Despite their extreme differences, viewers will love both characters and relate to each of their experiences. The visual and special effects are very realistic and even hilarious at times, especially in one episode when Jade's book-bag becomes stuck to the magnetic force of a huge rock -while she's wearing it. I love how the series has afterlife aspects, such as the pirate ghost or the girls having the supernatural powers to travel through walls and time. My favorite parts are the cool rooms and secrets Sam and Jade explore throughout their journey. While this series mostly focuses on solving the mystery in Surfside, the main characters love surfing as well. Seeing their passion for it and how it's one of the things that draws them together is very heartwarming.

This series explores how true friendships are based on accepting and celebrating each other's differences. Sam and Jade couldn't be more different, and they are still best friends, not clones. Their Surfside adventure is just what they need to learn from their mistakes, forgive and bond with each other and even learn more about themselves.

I rate Surfside Girls 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. You can watch it now on Apple TV+.


Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
GIGI & NATE
GIGI & NATE - ROADSIDE ATTRACTIONS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12 - 18
Description - Nate Gibson's life is turned upside down after he suffers a near-fatal illness and is left a quadriplegic. Moving forward seems impossible until he meets his unlikely service animal, Gigi - a curious and intelligent capuchin monkey - who helps Nate find what he needs most: hope.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Gigi & Nate is an uplifting movie with an encouraging message. This movie will put you through a range of emotions, and may even bring on the "waterworks."

After barely surviving a tragic accident that left him paralyzed, Nate Gibson (Charlie Rowe) has nothing worth living for, until he meets Gigi, a capuchin monkey. The two develop an inseparable bond, but not everyone's a fan of the relationship. Can Gigi and Nate stay together?

This movie is inspired by the organization Helping Hands: Monkey Helpers for the Disabled which helps to match people with disabilities to monkeys who will help them in their day to day life. The special effects are so impressive as I could barely tell when it switched from CGI to real life. Allie (who plays Gigi), the adorable capuchin monkey, makes her acting debut in this movie, and she is trained incredibly well. Too bad for Allie that there aren't Oscars for animals, because she would win one! Kudos to Allie's trainers for making her actions seem so organic and natural! The chemistry with Charlie Rowe (Nate) and Allie feels so real that sometimes I forget I'm watching a fictional movie and not a documentary.

The primary message of Gigi & Nate is to never give up - whether that means on yourself or on something you believe in. This movie has some profanity, alcohol consumption and attempted suicide.

I give Gigi & Nate 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. Gigi and Nate comes out in theaters September 2, 2022.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Runtime: 114 minutes Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: DVD


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SUMMERING
SUMMERING - BLEECKER STREET MEDIA
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12 - 18
Description - As their last summer before middle school comes to a close, four best friends face the uncertainties of growing up and embark on their biggest adventure yet.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - We all know what it's like to face change and challenges. And we always desire the best possible outcome from a predicament. Summering tells a relatable story about young girls finding their way through a challenge, while delivering a distinctive storyline.

Summering focuses on four best friends Dina (Madalen Mills), Lola (Sanai Victoria), Mari (Eden Grace Redfield), and Daisy (Lia Barnett) who are about to start middle school. With that comes plenty of questions and new challenges. On the weekend before school starts, the girls find themselves embarking on a peculiar adventure. These four best friends must work together to find the answer to their mystery and prepare for this new chapter in their lives.

Even though the characters in Summering are facing a fictional and fantasy-like situation, the plot is still somewhat relatable. These four best friends have to explore themselves and find out who they really are as they are growing older. They know that it is best to go on this journey together, but they worry about what obstacles will get in the way. Dina, Lola, Mari and Daisy also all have specific issues present in their life, making their friendships even more crucial. Anybody that is going through significant changes, no matter if they are young or old, can find something applicable to their lives in this story. The plot of Summering does seem a bit incomplete and choppy at certain parts of the film--the main mystery and conflict aren't really resolved which can leave viewers confused after watching. The background music of the film is particularly interesting as it matches the tone of the film and the events taking place in the scenes. Summering has a darker style, and the dark music compliments that--"props" to Drum & Lace for providing this high-quality soundtrack.

The message of Summering is that a lot of times opposites attract. Dina, Lola, Mari, and Daisy need each other to balance themselves out. Each brings something different to the friend group, ultimately bringing them all closer together.

I give Summering 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18. This film has minimal mild language and a middle school to high school demographic would enjoy it. You can find Summering in theaters now. So make sure you check it out!

Maica N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, Age 14

Just in time for back-to-school season, the new adventure film, Summering, is here to throw a plot twist into your summer adventures! Summering has a strong cast and loads of twists and turns. Even when the movie seems to be slowing down, something surprising happens.

Summering follows four best friends who are reaching the end of their summer break. With many events and drama amongst family members, including keeping secrets, the characters try to make the best of their last week of summer. One particular day, they head to the woods to leave memorabilia at a tree. While in the woods, the kids come across a man's dead body and set off on a mysterious adventure to discover his identity.

The leading young ladies in Summering are Daisy (Lia Barnett), Dina (Madalen Mills), Lola (Sanai Victoria) and Mari (Eden Grace Redfield). Overall, this movie is very interesting with multiple plots. Even though the plot doesn't answer many of the questions that are being uncovered, it still portrays the friendships and adventurous side of the four main characters. The parents in the film are interesting, too; they love watching their kids grow up together and seeing how they are just like them when they themselves were younger. There is a scene where the parents are peering upstairs and enjoying hearing their kids laughing and having fun together. Fun fact: This was the first film director, James Ponsoldt, has made for a young audience.

Summering touches on how friends are always there for you--the four girls are always finding ways to help and support each other when needed. And this film delivers the messages that things can always change, and that telling and knowing the truth is important. For example, Daisy's mother was not honest and kept a huge secret from her. The truth would have been less harmful and possibly saved Daisy from making poor decisions. Things parents must look out for are kids using a gun, a bar scene, creepy flashing images, the showing of a dead body, and the topic of suicide.

I give Summering 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Summering is now playing in theatres.

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


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SHE-HULK: ATTORNEY AT LAW
SHE-HULK: ATTORNEY AT LAW - DISNEY+
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 8 TO 18
Description - In Marvel Studios' She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, Jennifer Walters (Tatiana Maslany) --an attorney specializing in superhuman-oriented legal cases --must navigate the complicated life of a single, 30-something who also happens to be a green 6-foot-7-inch superpowered hulk.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - She-Hulk: Attorney at Law is a series that jumpstarts into action. It's an adrenaline-fueled, adventurous journey that ties into Marvel superhero movies. The series tells the engaging story about a lawyer who might lose her job due to some very interesting conditions.

She-Hulk: Attorney at Law features Jennifer Walters, an attorney living in Los Angeles. Jen happens to be the cousin of Bruce Banner (the Hulk). Unexpectedly, Jen and Bruce got into a car crash. After the crash, some of Bruce's blood got into Jen's wounds, which caused her to transform into an adapted version of the Hulk--hence, the name She-Hulk.

The main characters in this series are She-Hulk (Jennifer Walters), Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo), Nikki Ramos (Ginger Gonzaga), Titania (Jameela Jamil) and Abomination (Tim Roth). These actors impersonate their characters incredibly well. Additionally, the sets and animation are extremely realistic. When there is a fight, the animation made my heart beat super fast. In the first episode, my favorite part is when Bruce is training Jen to learn how to control the intense amount of strength she has. After demonstrating how to throw boulders, for example, she adapts quickly, and sometimes even does the exercise better than the Hulk himself. I also appreciate the quote when Bruce proclaims that what triggers turning into a hulk is anger and fear, and Jen responds, "Those are like the baseline of any women existing." It's hilarious and also true. I would recommend watching previous Marvel movies, especially the ones that include the Hulk. However, it's not a necessity, although it would help knowing the backstory of how hulks were created.

The message of this series is that females can be strong, too. I believe that the "She-Hulk" nickname isn't merely random, but has a meaning to it, which is female empowerment. Furthermore, this series establishes that women's emotions are normal, and that it is okay to have strong feelings, including anger. There is a lot of fighting and violence, and it has rough language. If young kids have seen other Marvel movies with parent/guardian approval, they should be fine watching this series.

I give She-Hulk: Attorney at Law 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. The first episode of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law begins streaming on Disney+ August 18, 2022. Each upcoming episode streams every Thursday after that.

By Sydney S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
PETITE MAMAN
PETITE MAMAN - NEON
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - C�line Sciamma continues to prove herself as one of the most accomplished and unpredictable contemporary French filmmakers with her follow up to PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE, the uniquely emotional, PETITE MAMAN. Following the death of her beloved grandmother, 8-year-old Nelly accompanies her parents to her mother's childhood home to begin the difficult process of cleaning out its contents. As Nelly explores the house and nearby woods, she is immediately drawn to a neighbor her own age building a treehouse. What follows is a tender tale of childhood grief, memory and connection.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Petite Maman is a warm bundle of cinematic magic. Director Celina Sciamma's French coming of age sci-fi hybrid never gets too bogged down in tedious specifics of its fantastical set-up. Petit Maman bends time to tell the story about the bond between a daughter and her mother that transcends it.

Petite Maman, which I had the pleasure of seeing at the Middleburg Film Festival, centers itself around a little girl named Nelly (Josephine Sanz) and her family, reeling after the death of a loved one, as they spend some time in Nelly's mother's childhood home. Nelly's mother leaves the family behind in the midst of the immense grief she's suffering, leaving her husband and daughter with little idea of when she'll return. In the meantime, Nelly ventures into the woods, where she meets and begins to pal around with a young girl, who she learns, by some twist of cosmic fate, is a much younger version of her own mother, who faces trials of her own. A single stretch of woods bridges decades between them. Together, they try to help each other cope in these moments of personal turmoil and Nelly can maybe get to understand why her mother left and what she's going through. This movie quite literally follows its two leads after their meeting, making food, building forts, making believe. Petit Maman uses those pastimes of youth to hit audiences with a surprisingly layered exploration of something as monumental as grief from a kid's perspective.

I loved, loved, loved the setup of this movie--it doesn't ever seek to explain how Nelly and this younger version of her mother meet in terms of time and space, but it uses that heightened concept to speak to something more human. Here, two children reckon with fear and their powerlessness in the conflicts they face, and in the comfort and security they give each other lies the courage to face them.

The lesson of Petite Maman is just to be there for the people you love in times of great difficulty.

I give Petite Maman 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. It's an understated, but moving little gem that I hope doesn't escape people's radar. Petite Maman is currently streaming on various VOD platforms including iTunes and Vudu.

Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 16
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
NEVER HAVE I EVER: SEASON 3
NEVER HAVE I EVER: SEASON 3 - NETFLIX
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 14-18
Description - Never Have I Ever is an American coming-of-age comedy-drama television series starring Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, created by Mindy Kaling and Lang Fisher. Though it takes place in the San Fernando Valley, the show is loosely based on Kaling's childhood experiences in the Boston area. The story centers around Devi Vishwakumar, a 15-year-old Indian-American Tamil girl from Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles. After her father, Mohan, dies suddenly, Devi loses the sensation in her legs. This happens due to the psychological trauma of the event and she is unable to walk for three months. However, one day she miraculously recovers and stands on her legs. In the third season, Devi and Paxton have become an official couple much to the school's shock. After being shamed in the girl's bathroom and given advice by Dr. Ryan, Devi realizes that being in a relationship will not solve all her problems. After a confrontation with Zoe, she realizes that Paxton might not stay in a relationship with her if she doesn't have sex with him. After a conversation with Kamala, she realizes she is not ready to lose her virginity and Paxton supports her as well. Meanwhile, following Kamala's departure from Prashant's engagement dinner, the latter decides it is best for them to break up, much to Devi's grandmother's dismay while Fabiola, realizing that a long-distance relationship with Eve is taking a toll on her grades, decides to break up with her.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The third season of this teen "rom-dramedy" is back and even more drama filled! Existing fans and new fans will enjoy this new season of Never Have I Ever as it picks up where it left off in season two and continues to deliver young adult entertainment.

The story of hotheaded but lovable Devi Vishmakumar (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan) continues as she goes through the challenges of high school. And her love triangle with Ben (Jaren Lewison) and Paxton (Darren Barnet) isn't nearly over yet.

Since this is the third season, I highly recommend watching the previous seasons to catch up on everything in the storyline thus far. Returning fans will love that the series stays consistent with its themes: dramatic irony and horrible decision-making. The entire cast is super talented with the best performances coming from Maitreyi Ramakrishnan (Devi), Jaren Lewison (Ben) and Poorna Jagannathan (Dr. Nalini.) As always, Maitreyi keeps the perfect balance of being rash and rage-filled with being sweet and relatable. She really makes you love to love and to hate her character. Jaren, similarly to Maitreyi, can be very cocky at points, but you can't help but forgive him. Poorna Jagannathan, while still the same person in essence, really morphs into a new character in this season. My favorite character is Dr. Jamie Ryan (Niecy Nash) because she delivers comedic relief while also providing comfort.

The messages of Never Have I Ever are similar to season one and two. Essentially, they are to make good decisions and think things through, while also remembering to have some fun along the way. The series also shows how powerful love from friends and family can be. There is profanity and some suggestive material.

I give Never Have I Ever 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 14 to 18. It comes out on Netflix on August 12, 2022.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 14-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
KUNG FU GHOST
KUNG FU GHOST - VISION FILMS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8 - 18
Description - When a charming but na�ve young woman inherits her late -Grandfather's estate, she soon discovers the house's ghostly inhabitants who have taken a pledge to protect her family's century-old secrets and powerful artifacts. Now, to guard the future, she teams up with spirits of the past to fight treasure-hunting criminals and discovers the power of life itself.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Kung Fu Ghost is a fun movie that is both action-packed and a love story. The cinematography is strikingly beautiful and it is filled with both kung fu fighting and teenager love which makes it appealing for a cross section of people and ages.

The story follows a young Vietnamese woman named Daisy (Jennifer N Linch) who inherits her grandfather's US estate. She plans to stay in the house only long enough to sell it and return to Vietnam to re-open her grandmother's restaurant. However, she discovers that her deceased grandfather's (David S. Dawson) ghost haunts the house along with his friend William (Noah Sargent). They are protectors of a magic relic. The film tells the story of the lengths the ghosts take to protect the girl and the relic from harm.

It is easy to be drawn into this film. The story flows seamless from scene to scene. The characters are believable and are very well developed and it is easy to be empathic to what everyone is going through. The vocabulary and concepts are suitable for the target audience and, although the kung fu fights are realistic, they are in the realm of martial arts and not particularly violent. There certainly is no bloody, gory violence. The cinematography is outstanding. The images are clean and crisp and the outdoor scenes are exquisite. The background music is also beautiful. I like how the film teaches us a bit about teenage Asian culture.

The message of the film is about honoring our elders and being open to new experiences.

I highly recommend Kung Fu Ghost for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. It releases on DVD August 2, 2022.

By Pamela L., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Kung Fu Ghost is a unique film that incorporates different messages and the basics of learning something new. If you like to watch films with a good message that everyone can relate to, then you should check this out.

The story follows Daisy (Jennifer N. Linch) who has just inherited her grandpa's house, but discovers that the house is haunted and she has to stay there for a whole week. During her stay she encounters ghosts who have come to protect Daisy's family's secrets and special artifacts. When robbers come to steal these artifacts, Daisy has to learn how to defend herself and how to keep her family secrets safe.

This film is very family friendly. Although this film isn't a big budget production, I like how they got creative and used what they had. For example, Daisy's grandpa's house doesn't look like how you would expect it to look, but without all the cobwebs and trash all over the place, it is still a very nice house. At times in the film it is difficult to understand the dialogue because the characters speak too low or their pronunciation is off. When Daily first arrives at her grandfather's house you can barely understand what she is saying. But for the most part, the actors' performances are believable. My favorite character is William (Noah Sargent), because he is mysterious and he adds more suspense to the film, plus he is a nice guy. Anytime he appears in a scene, he makes you anticipate what is going to happen next.

The message of the film is that if you try hard enough you will succeed. In the beginning Daisy isn't a person that people would call "strong," so when she has to learn to defend herself it's not easy at first. In the end she learns how to do defend herself and proves people wrong.

I give Kung Fu Ghost 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. It releases on VOD and DVD August 2, 2022. Be sure to check it out!

By Giana N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

Kung Fu Ghost is a film with many good qualities - a unique storyline and inclusion of up-and-coming new actors that do a fair job portraying their characters.

The storyline follows a young woman named Daisy (Jennifer N. Linch) who has moved from Vietnam to California after inheriting her late grandfather's (David S. Dawson) estate. Quickly after she arrives, she discovers that the estate is haunted by the spirit of her grandfather and a ghost named William (Noah Sargent). The ghostly inhabitants vow to protect her family's secrets and special artifacts, but when treasure-hunting criminals threaten the future, she teams up with the ghosts to try and stop them.

Kung Fu Ghost is a film with a lot of potential. I like that it shows us some new talent like Jennifer N. Linch, David S. Dawson and Noah Sargent. These actors are clearly passionate about this project and it shows in their performances. Jennifer N. Linch shows fear, admiration, shock, anger, disappointment and so many other emotions. Her reactions to certain situations are realistic, which makes the audience more interested in the story. You can also tell that the actors were well prepared for their roles. Kung Fu Ghost has a few editing flaws, such as the scenes where Daisy is on a video call with her aunt. The picture of Daisy's aunt is noticeably edited onto the phone. An honorable mention is Jennifer N. Linch, who serves as the director and producer, and also plays the lead role. Not only does Jennifer N. Linch have all of these credits for this film, but she also specializes in various martial arts, which is incorporated into the film. Adding this element to the Kung Fu Ghost makes it feel more authentic.

The message of Kung Fu Ghost is to give people a chance before you judge them. Although Daisy is quick to not want anything to do with her ghost grandfather, she finds that she can rely on him more than she initially thinks.

I give Kung Fu Ghost 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Viewers who enjoy movies about ghosts and spirits may find Kung Fu Ghost particularly fascinating. You can find Kung Fu Ghost on VOD and DVD August 2, 2022.

By Maica N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DC LEAGUE OF SUPER-PETS
DC LEAGUE OF SUPER-PETS - WARNER BROS. PICTURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-12
Description - In DC League of Super-Pets, Krypto the Super-Dog and Superman are inseparable best friends, sharing the same superpowers and fighting crime in Metropolis side by side. When Superman and the rest of the Justice League are kidnapped, Krypto must convince a rag-tag shelter pack--Ace the hound, PB the potbellied pig, Merton the turtle and Chip the squirrel--to master their own newfound powers and help him rescue the superheroes. Dwayne Johnson stars as the voice of Krypto the Super-Dog in Warner Bros. Pictures' animated action-adventure feature film "DC League of Super-Pets," from director Jared Stern. The film also stars the voices of Kevin Hart, Kate McKinnon, and John Krasinski.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - DC League of Super-Pets is sure to be a fan favorite for kids who love superheroes and animals! This animated movie is full of classic crime fighting battles as well as heartfelt messages, making it a perfect family movie.

Superman (John Krasinski) and Krypto (Dwayne Johnson), the Super-Dog, have been best friends since birth. When the entire Justice League is kidnapped, Krypto must create a crime fighting league of his own, so he enlists the help of shelter pets Ace (Kevin Hart), Merton (Natasha Lyonne), PB (Vanessa Bayer) and Chip (Diego Luna) to save the Justice League and all of Metropolis.

The animation is beautiful! The characters' designs, especially the pets, are so adorable and keep a cartoonish and comic book-like feeling. The humor is great; it pokes fun at other studios (like Marvel Studios) and also at itself (DC Comics), making it relatable to teens and adults who have seen the more serious Marvel and DC movies. The voice acting is outstanding. Everyone fits their roles so well and they really bring their characters to life, displaying each one's unique personality. The actors that stand out the most are Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Natasha Lyonne and Kate McKinnon. Dwayne Johnson as Krypto and Kevin Hart as Ace are a dynamic duo as their chemistry is so apparent - no doubt due to the many times they have worked together in other films. Natasha Lyonne perfects the voice of Old Lady Merton. Her comedic timing is spot on. Kate McKinnon, as Lulu happens to be my favorite character, but I can't say why as I don't want to give away any spoilers. What I can say is that her role appears to be written specifically for her.

The primary message of DC League of Super-Pets is that friendship, teamwork and love is stronger than any superpower. There are also themes of moving on and making room for new loved ones. Plus, this movie may inspire people to adopt animals from a shelter. I know I'm ready to!

I give DC League of Super-Pets 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12, plus pet and superhero lovers! It releases in theaters July 29, 2022.

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

Fun for kids and families, DC League of Super-Pets is a fantastic addition to the DC superhero film franchise. My favorite DC superhero characters have come to life as pets in this new action-packed film and I love it.

After Superman's home, Kyrpton, is destroyed, he is sent to earth with a trusty companion, his super-pet Krypto. As Superman and the Justice League are kidnapped by a hairless hamster, Lex Luther's pet, Lulu, Krypto and his unlikely pet friends ban together to save them.

It is great seeing Batman (Keanu Reeves), Superman (John Krasinski), Green Lantern (Dascha Polanco), The Flash (John Early), Aquaman (Jemaine Clemente) and Cyborg (Daveed Diggs), aka the Justice League, in cartoon form. This film is perfect for a family movie nigh with the perfect mix of action, comedy and adventure. DC League of Super-Pets brings back arguably the best Hollywood duo to the big screen, Kevin Hart and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. As their characters are familiar and recognizable throughout the story I love how the writers shape them with new personalities, quirks and even genders. It is like rediscovering these classic superhero favorites all over again. My favorite character is Ace, played by Kevin Hart who embodies his pit-bull character really well. The comedy and punch lines land every-time, which is greatly appreciated.

The message in DC League of Super-Pets is that growth is inevitable, good for you and good for those around you. Be forewarned that this film contains some suggestive language.< p>I give DC League of Super-Pets 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theaters July 27, 2022. You don't want to miss it!

By Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18

DC League of Super-Pets is a wonderful new film with great voice-acting, awesome animation, and a fantastic message. The whole family will love it!

The story follows Krypto (Dwayne Johnson), a super dog owned by the one and only Superman. Superman has been hanging out with his girlfriend, Lois (Olivia Wilde) too much, and Krypto feels left out. But after Superman is kidnapped along with the rest of the Justice League by evil guinea pig, Lulu (Kate McKinnon), Krypto meets a group of pound animals and he must learn to work together with them to save the Justice League, and the world.

The animation of the pets in this movie is terrific; all their crazy superpowers are animated so well. Kevin Hart's portrayal of Ace is one of my favorites. It's really funny when he's trying to escape from the pound. I also love PB (Vanessa Byer) and Ch'p (Diego Luna) because they make up a lot of the funniest scenes in the movie. There's one scene when both of them are they're trying to create an epic training montage, because you have to have an epic training montage, obviously. But it goes horribly wrong and their powers start going insane and they all start flying everywhere! Their friendship with Merton the turtle (Natasha Lyonne) is really fun to watch. One of my favorite things is the soundtrack. It's a combination of old and new songs that are all equally fun pump-up songs, with lyrics that are quite familiar to most people. This movie is very sweet and some scenes may even bring the waterworks as they did for me. My favorite scene is when Superman ditches Krypto to go on a date with Lois. Another scene I really like is the scene with Krypto singing Taylor Swift's song, "Bad Blood," while eating strawberry ice cream on the bed and watching The Great British Bake Off.

The message of DC League of Super-Pets is that sometimes you have to sacrifice for the people you love. It's a message that is seen throughout the movie through love between friends or pet and owner.

I give DC League of SuperPets 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theaters July 29, 2022.

By Kendall B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11

DC League of Super-Pets is not only "dog-tastic," it's "fun-tastic" as well! I can't remember watching another movie with so much spontaneous laughter and applause from a screening audience. This animated story will be one your family will want to watch again and again.

In DC League of Super-Pets, Krypto the Super-Dog (Dwayne Johnson) and Superman (John Krasinski) are inseparable best friends, sharing the same superpowers and fighting crime in Metropolis. When Superman and the rest of the Justice League are kidnapped, Krypto must convince an unlikely group of animal shelter heroes that they need to band together to help him rescue their human superhero counterparts. The movie trailer for DC League of Super-Pets gives audiences an accurate portrayal of the movie, in this rare instance, as well as interesting glimpses of the delightful characters and humorous situations which develop.

Our new heroes come to life in this animated action adventure film from Director Jared Stern who is also one of the writers. The cast is notably talented and Krypto's other canine member Ace (Kevin Hart) teaches him that love is unconditional and that you can't have justice without truth. This movie really has a fabulous ensemble cast and there are too many individuals to mention, and they all contribute to the hilarity of this story. Like the many pets they portray, the characters are fun, loyal and show us that we all need a best friend. My favorite scene is one where Krypto is jealous and gets up to some serious antics when he is home alone. It's set to the song "Bad Blood" by Taylor Swift, which plays in the background when he indulges his feelings. Dwayne Johnson really brings his character to life and writers Jared Stern and John Whittington must have pets at home, as they capture the canine spirit perfectly. There is also the competitiveness between Batman and Superman, which underlies some of the humorous scenes and interaction.

The message of this film is that love is unconditional, even if it hurts. Krypto and his alter-ego, Bark Kent, are jealous of Lois Lane (Olivia Wilde). He learns that change and accepting new friends can expand the possibilities of love. Before the movie starts there is a segment about Best Friends Animal Society (bestfriends.org) and how you can become a superhero to homeless pets. As a person who has adopted two homeless pets, I can't tell you how meaningful it is for DC Super League of Pets to recognize the love that these animals can bring into our lives just as Krypto experiences in the film!

I rate DC League of Super-Pets, 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, but of course adults will enjoy the humor and storyline as well. It is available in theaters July 29, 2022, so don't miss this tail-wagging adventure!

By Selene W., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

The new animated film DC League of Super-Pets absolutely hits the mark for younger kids with a cute and sweet storyline that make it very family friendly. It's predictable, but still fun to watch, especially because the cast is outstanding!

DC League of Super-Pets is about how Superman's (John Krasinski) dog, Krypto (Dwayne Johnson) and his pet friends save Justice League. When Superman falls in love, Krypto feels like he isn't needed any longer by Superman. Superman notices that and tries to get Krypto a friend, but he can't find one until he checks out the pet adoption center. When Superman is kidnapped, Krypto and his animal buddies have to rescue him and save the Justice League.

The graphics of this animated film are pretty neat. Add to that a super soundtrack and great voice actors. Each actor, from Dwayne Johnson's Krypto, John Krasinski's Superman and Kevin Hart's shelter dog, Ace and you've got a great cast of characters, whether they are being funny or serious. Additional starring roles are played by Keanu Reeves, Ben Schwartz, Kate McKinnon, Diego Luna and more. My favorite character is Krypto because of how funny and cute he is, which is no surprise since Dwayne Johnson excels at that! My favorite scene of Krypto's is when Superman is getting ready for date night and Krypto thinks Superman's girlfriend is going to replace him so, he starts crying while watching his favorite show that he and Superman would watch together. Another fun part is when he eats quarts of ice cream.

The moral of DC League of Super-Pets it that it's not about what you do, it's about who you are. Krypto learns this when he can't use his powers, but that isn't the problem. His father says he is the problem.

I give DC League of Super-Pets 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. It opens in theatres on July 29, 2022.

By Ethan P., KIDS FIRST!

Who doesn't love a good superhero movie? Krypto and his new friends are here to save the day and, in the process, entertain the audience. With a hilarious script and fresh characters, there is never a dull moment in DC League of Super-Pets.

DC League of Super-Pets is about Krypto (Dwayne Johnson), the strong and powerful super-dog sidekick to Superman (John Krasinski). Superman and Krypto have been inseparable for years. But when Superman starts getting closer to his girlfriend, Lois Lane (Olivia Wilde), Krypto feels out of place. Before Krypto and Superman have the chance to see eye-to-eye, Superman and the rest of the Justice League get kidnapped. Finding himself without powers, Krypto has to learn to accept help as he teaches a group of shelter animals how to master their new powers, in order to save Superman.

DC League of Super-Pets is one of the most humorous and entertaining movies I've seen all year. One of the first things audiences will notice when watching DC League of Super-Pets is the comical tone. The script is very sarcastic and each character has their own moment to make the audience laugh. When Krypto and Ace (Kevin Hart) have scenes together, there's always a lighthearted banter between them. As Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart are best friends in real life, it surely makes them perfect for these roles; they both sound very natural and their comedic timing is impeccable. Along with the two of them, the other animals all have unique personalities that help them support each other. I commend the casting director, Ruth Lambert, for choosing actors that fit each role so well. In addition to the humor in the film, DC League of Super-Pets has multiple monologues and impactful scenes with important messages. When Krypto is feeling that all is lost and Ace goes to comfort him, we learn about Ace's past during a heartfelt monologue. He teaches us that if you care about someone, you should put them first no matter what. The pacing of DC League of Super-Pets makes it easy to follow and enjoyable. The story is thoroughly explained and it's an appropriate length.

The message of DC League of Super-Pets is that there's no such thing as perfection. Krypto is so used to being perfect with his powers that he has difficulty accepting anything else. He has to learn that Ace and the rest of the shelter pets aren't flawless, but that's what makes them who they are.

I rate DC League of Super-Pets 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. It's a great film for families and anyone can find something to enjoy. DC League of Super-Pets releases in theaters on July 29, 2022. Make sure you check it out!

By Maica Nesmith, KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, Age 14

DC League of Super-Pets is a highly comedic movie. As expected with superhero movies, this film is filled with action and adventure, except from the most unlikely heroes and villains. Yet, there's something about furry friends that makes any movie feel more lighthearted. With a great message, engaging plot and talented cast, this is a film you'll want to watch again and again.

This film is about a dog named Krypto (Dwayne Johnson) who is Superman's sidekick and also his best friend. They fight crime with each other, sharing the same powers. When Lex Luthor's guinea pig, Lulu (Kate McKinnon), takes away Krypto's powers and captures the entire Justice League, she tries to free Lex Luther from captivity so the two of them can take over the world. Krypto soon discovers that a pack of shelter animals has gained powers of their own, so he teaches them how to use and control their powers. Now Krypto and the shelter animals need to work together as a team if they want to stop Lulu's evil plan.

This is an amazing film to watch. Something I like about this film is the comedy. All the characters in this film are actually sarcastic and have a great sense of humor. When something serious is happening the characters find a way to make us laugh in the middle of an intense moment. I also like the character development for Krypto. In the beginning, Krypto is used to working by himself and not sharing with anyone else other than Superman. But, because he needs help from the other animals to save the Justice League and has to help them learn to live with their new powers, he has to share and communicate better. My favorite character is Ace (Kevin Hart), because he is kind and caring towards others, even if he doesn't seem that way at the start. He tries to be strong and tough in front of the others, but his actions throughout the movie show that deep inside, he isn't what he seems on the outside.

The message of this film is that sometimes you have to do anything for the people you love, even if it means sacrificing yourself. In the film we see multiple acts of heroism from different characters which shows how they would do anything for the people they really care about.

I give DC League of Super-Pets 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 18, plus adults. It opens in theaters July 29, 2022. Be sure to check it out!

By Giana Nesmith, KIDSFIRST Film Critic, Age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
JURASSIC WORLD CAMP CRETACEOUS SEASON 5
JURASSIC WORLD CAMP CRETACEOUS SEASON 5 - NETFLIX
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 5-12
Description - The show Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous is back for its 5th and final season. This season's message and plot is deeper than the rest, because it deals with animal cruelty towards the dinosaurs. Even with that, this is still an action-packed season that you don't want to miss.

The final season of this show centers on friends Kenji (Ryan Potter), Brooklyn (Jenna Ortega), Yasmine (Kausar Mohammed), Ben (Sean Giambrone), Sammy (Raini Rodriguez) and Darius (Paul-Mik�l Williams) who are hoping for a chance to get found as they are stuck on an unknown island. As Kenji's father, Mr. Kon (Andrew Kishino), appears, their hope for making it out is somewhat high, but not for long. Mr. Kon is planting chips in the dinosaurs' brains, leaving the dinosaurs with no control over themselves. They must work together if they ever want to save the dinosaurs and make it off of the island alive.

Something I like and find unique, is how the kids act towards the dinosaurs. Even though the dinosaurs sometimes try to eat them, they don't treat them like evil creatures or as if they are always the bad guy. The kids want to protect the dinosaurs and make their lives and environment better. Another aspect of the show that I enjoy is that they incorporated modern items, such as a tablet and phone, to what feels like a prehistoric time with dinosaurs. My favorite episode is "Shaky Ground" because it mainly focuses on Darius and Brooklyn trying to figure out how to cope with what they see and what they know. This episode shows how they are able to work a difficult problem through together. My favorite character is Darius, because he is the most gentle and caring towards the dinosaurs and he is a nice kid in general. I also enjoy the scenes with Ben because he has a great sense of humor. Even when things are not going their way, he finds a way to make the situation light. The message of Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous is that you should treat everyone and everything fairly. What happens to the dinosaurs in this season is unfair and the kids know it. That is why they go out of their way to help save them. This is totally family-friendly and a great show to watch.

I give Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. This is also a great show for families to watch together. You can watch this show on Netflix starting July 21, 2022. Be sure to check it out!


KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The show Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous is back for its 5th and final season. This season's message and plot is deeper than the rest, because it deals with animal cruelty towards the dinosaurs. Even with that, this is still an action-packed season that you don't want to miss.

The final season of this show centers on friends Kenji (Ryan Potter), Brooklyn (Jenna Ortega), Yasmine (Kausar Mohammed), Ben (Sean Giambrone), Sammy (Raini Rodriguez) and Darius (Paul-Mik�l Williams) who are hoping for a chance to get found as they are stuck on an unknown island. As Kenji's father, Mr. Kon (Andrew Kishino), appears, their hope for making it out is somewhat high, but not for long. Mr. Kon is planting chips in the dinosaurs' brains, leaving the dinosaurs with no control over themselves. They must work together if they ever want to save the dinosaurs and make it off of the island alive.

Something I like and find unique, is how the kids act towards the dinosaurs. Even though the dinosaurs sometimes try to eat them, they don't treat them like evil creatures or as if they are always the bad guy. The kids want to protect the dinosaurs and make their lives and environment better. Another aspect of the show that I enjoy is that they incorporated modern items, such as a tablet and phone, to what feels like a prehistoric time with dinosaurs. My favorite episode is "Shaky Ground" because it mainly focuses on Darius and Brooklyn trying to figure out how to cope with what they see and what they know. This episode shows how they are able to work a difficult problem through together. My favorite character is Darius, because he is the most gentle and caring towards the dinosaurs and he is a nice kid in general. I also enjoy the scenes with Ben because he has a great sense of humor. Even when things are not going their way, he finds a way to make the situation light. The message of Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous is that you should treat everyone and everything fairly. What happens to the dinosaurs in this season is unfair and the kids know it. That is why they go out of their way to help save them. This is totally family-friendly and a great show to watch.

I give Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. This is also a great show for families to watch together. You can watch this show on Netflix starting July 21, 2022. Be sure to check it out!


Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ZOMBIES 3
ZOMBIES 3 - DISNEY CHANNEL
Series: TV SERIES, 8-12
Description - It's Zed and Addison's final year at Seabrook and things are better than ever. The town has finally accepted monsters as a part of Seabrook and has become a safe haven for monsters and humans alike. Zed is on the cusp of receiving a football scholarship and becoming the first Zombie to ever attend college (and he's excited to join Addison who has already been admitted). Addison is excited to mark the opening of the town's brand new "cheer pavilion" by inviting cheer teams from all over the world to compete in an "international cheer-off." However, the town is shocked by the arrival of a new group of intergalactic outsiders - Aliens, who show up to compete in the cheer-off. Though they begrudgingly allow the Aliens to stay for the competition - the monsters and humans of Seabrook grow suspicious when they discover that the Aliens may be looking for more than a friendly competition. Some flashing lights sequences or patterns may affect photosensitive viewers.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This Zombie-filled, "cheertastic," beastly and out-of-this-world film, is everything a Disney movie fan could want! With the same original characters from Zombies 1 and 2, as well as, some new extra-terrestrial friends, Zombies 3 will have fans singing, dancing, cheering and feeling every emotion.

Zombies 3 is about Addison (Meg Donnelly) who is still trying to find where she belongs and graduate from Seabrook High along with her zombie boyfriend, Zed (Milo Manheim), who is trying to break history as the first monster to go to college. While humans, zombies and werewolves have learned to co-exist in Seabrook, everything changes when aliens show up on Earth on a mission to uncover a code that leads them to their home planet. Will the aliens be able to reach their goal while the Seabrook students fight to win the Cheer Cup during their last year in high school?

The main characters are Addison, Zed and the aliens. As the third installment of the Zombies' franchise, this film still has the same spirit as the previous ones. The soundtrack is quite different, with more of an "alien-like" vibe to it. I love the aspect of inclusion in this film and how, even though the franchise is called Zombies, it includes many types of monsters with different powers among the humans. It's heartwarming to see how Addison is always there for everyone and welcomes them to Seabrook High. She is the activist, leader and overall best friend of everyone at Seabrook, plus newcomers. This film is based on Secrets Galore. Be prepared to be stunned by what is revealed in Zombies 3.

Some lessons from Zombies 3 are that anything is possible when you try, trust is always the key, and people have to do what they need to get what they want and need in life. This is demonstrated when Zed advocates to become the first zombie to go to college, how Addison trusts the aliens and welcomes them to join the Cheer Cup, despite their entrance and alien bodies, and how the aliens come to earth to find the most precious thing and will do whatever it takes to achieve that.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 12, plus adults. You can watch Zombies 3 on Disney+ now.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
STRONG FATHERS, STRONG DAUGHTERS
STRONG FATHERS, STRONG DAUGHTERS - PURE FLIX ENTERTAINMENT
Series: FEATURE, AGES 5-18
Description - When a wealthy businessman learns of his daughter's sudden engagement to a missionary, he embarks on a quest to keep her closer to home, but when his efforts go awry he must reconsider what it means to be a strong father.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters is a fantastic mix of romance, comedy and family life. The film is simply a must-see. Strong acting supports a well-developed plot.

The storyline of Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters follows Steve Parston (Bart Johnson), the father of three kids and husband of Connie Parston (Robyn Lively). The couple's eldest child, Abby Parston (Carrie Wampler) returns to the family home in California after living in Mexico for months. Having had big plans to be business partners with Abby for years, Steve is shocked and unsupportive when she announces other plans. Will Steve learn to live without his daughter at home, or will he ruin everything with her in his refusal to move on?

The story of this film is very impressive, with each character having their own engaging subplot. Rather than awkwardly pausing the primary storyline to build on each of these subplots, the smaller stories develop in the midst of the main story, without viewers realizing it. As a result, there are characters that are cared for, many loose ends to be wrapped up and countless extra comedic and romantic bits in between. One of the best characters, Crystal (Arden Myrin), the wedding planner, is a perfect addition to the film. She is extremely enthusiastic about her job and very excited to be getting business; she brings lots of light to some of the bleaker, sadder scenes. These sequences provide the right balance of negative and positive energy. Another important aspect of Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters is the relatable family. This film truly demonstrates how, although family members disagree and argue, each person is seriously trying to help one another and do the best they can. Each of the three daughters goes through one or more realistic conflicts that they solve with guidance from their inner selves as well as from those around them. With a variety of difficult situations shown throughout the film, every viewer will have at least one struggle that is similar to something they, or someone they know, has dealt with. So many different connections allow Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters to reach many diverse audiences. The actors use these connections to make their character even easier to identify with. In particular, Kayla DiVenere gives an amazing performance as Zoey, the middle child in the family.

The message of Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters is that you have to let people make their own choices, whether you agree with their decisions or not. Steve tries to prevent Abby from making her own decisions, and ends up realizing that it is not his choice to make. There is some minor language to be aware of.

I give Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. You can watch Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters exclusively on PureFlix beginning August 1, 2022.

By Kyla C, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters is an emotional depiction of the ups and downs of the relationship between a father and a daughter. It's a superb summer watch.

Wealthy businessman, Steve Parston (Bart Johnson) just locked in a huge new deal based on his daughter Abby's (Carrie Wampler) pitch deck. Soon after celebrating this achievement, he learns of Abby's sudden engagement to Oz (Brandon Prado), a selfless missionary based in Mexico. Steve embarks on a quest to keep Abby closer to home and make her a partner in his new venture. However, when his efforts go awry, he must consider what it means to be a strong, supportive father.

Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters director David de Vos guides this film quite well, especially with the actors' performances and the cinematography, by Rick Pendleton. Each actor seems comfortable in their role, especially Robyn Lively as Steve Parston's wife, Connie. The Mexican angle seems a bit underdeveloped; it is rather inconsequential that we learn that Oz and his family are Mexican and run an orphanage in Mexico until the final scenes of the film. I'm not sure that this addition is meaningful and if so, why it doesn't it come up earlier. The writing is a bit stilted at times, but the emotion with which Bart Johnson, in particular, plays his role helps lift the film back up.

Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters is all about trust and respect in relationships. It encourages parents to let go of their children when they wish to fly away, and it promotes altruism, both professionally and in personal relationships. Note that Christian missionary work is referred to, and we see children acting out in the film at times.

I give Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters 4.5 stars out of 5 and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters releases August 1, 2022 in theaters.

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters teaches important lessons about family values. This family-friendly movie doesn't only benefit children; it also teaches fathers about letting go of their daughters, and to know when to step in to ensure a positive future. Based on the bestselling book Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters by author Dr. Meg Meeker, the movie shares heartwarming values that make the whole family comfortable watching it together.

Actors Robyn Lively and Bart Johnson play Connie and Steve, the parents to Zoey, Abby, and Bridget in the movie. The movie starts with Abby, the oldest daughter, coming home from a business trip and surprising the family with the fact that she's engaged. Not only is she giving up her career path at her dad's office, but she is also running away to Africa with her future husband to care for the poor as missionaries with the church. Steve struggles with finding a way to let Abby accomplish her own dreams and start a new path, instead of continuing the dream they have always had together, even the dreams of what her future wedding would look like.

Robyn and Bart who play the believable role of husband and wife, are married outside of the movie, it turns out! I can imagine how this would add more depth to their roles. Abby and her fiance Oz are played by Carrie Wampler and Brandon Prado. While these are the main characters, other actors that are important to the movie include Kayla DiVenere (as Zoey), Arden Myrin (as Crystal), David Barrera (as Carlos), and Maria Canals-Barrera (as Bella.) This movie is funny to watch, and the set design is exciting and colorful. Learning about the Mexican culture through the bright colors and fun decorations was also very interesting. The writing seemed predictable, though, without too many major twists. Not to give any spoilers, but I could imagine how it would end from the beginning.

The message of this movie is that families can persevere to solve different problems and to build strong futures together. Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters has alcohol consumption and breaking the rules with social media. In one scene, a daughter sneaks out to a party with boys against parent permission.

I give Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. You can watch it on Pure Flix starting on August 1, 2022.

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


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
INTO FLIGHT ONCE MORE
INTO FLIGHT ONCE MORE - SOUND BEGINNINGS
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 8-18
Description - Into Flight Once More, narrated by Gary Sinise, brings the history of June 6, 1944 to the present through the lens of one squadron and their epic recreation journey across the North Atlantic to Normandy for the 75th Anniversary of D-Day. Along the way we meet some of the last remaining D-Day veterans and younger generations of men and women who have re-charted their path to honor their sacrifice and thank them for their service.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Into Flight Once More is an engaging, educational documentary about honoring the veterans of World War II.

Into Flight Once More follows the flight of restored vintage aircraft to the beaches of Normandy to mark the 75th anniversary of D Day. For those who are unaware, D Day marks the Allied powers siege on the beaches of Normandy to take back Nazi-occupied France. It is often marked as a major turning point in World War II that ensured an Allied victory.

Within the film, we get to see some of the brave pilots and servicemen who helped secure victory on that historic day. We also follow the teams of crafts persons and aviation enthusiasts who dedicated sweat, tears and valuable time to making sure this show of appreciation for those who served went down as planned. The intercutting of footage is very effective in this film. Not only is there some striking aerial footage where the camera is seated on the wing, but it also includes some black and white archival video captured during almost a century ago. There are also animated portions that illustrate the intricacies of the feat that took place on D Day. The frequent visual reserves keep the documentary consistently interesting. This film reminds us that we have a thin window of opportunity to show our appreciation for the sacrifices our WWII veterans made, as mentioned frequently in the documentary by many who participated in this commemorative flight. The chief reason for making sure this flight happened is to demonstrate a level of admiration to these veterans for their bravery and to do it while they're still here.

The lesson of Into Flight Once More is to understand and appreciate the sacrifices of those who fought and those who died to preserve our freedoms and way of life here in the U.S.A.>p>I recommend Into Flight Once More for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. It helps to have some understanding of D Day because that puts the ultimate value of this endeavor in perspective. I give Into Flight Once More 4 out of 5 stars. I implore you to seek this one out. It's currently streaming on several video on demand platforms.


Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
FIRE OF LOVE
FIRE OF LOVE - NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS ENTERTAINMENT - LA
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Katia and Maurice Krafft loved two things -- each other and volcanoes. For two decades, the daring French volcanologist couple roamed the planet, chasing eruptions and documenting their discoveries. Ultimately, they lost their lives in a 1991 volcanic explosion, leaving a legacy that forever enriched our knowledge of the natural world. Director Sara Dosa and the filmmaking team fashion a lyrical celebration of the intrepid scientists' spirit of adventure, drawing from the Kraffts' spectacular archive. FIRE OF LOVE tells a story of primordial creation and destruction, following two bold explorers as they venture into the unknown, all for the sake of love.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A superb film for nature-lovers and a great film to study for budding documentarians, Fire of Love explores a dynamic relationship between volcanologists, with beautiful editing and archival footage; however, its pace somewhat undermines the beauty of the film.

In Fire of Love, we are introduced to Katia and Maurice Krafft, Alsatian French volcanologists and spouses. From the beginning, it is evident that Maurice is the one who jumps in with abandon, and Katia is the one who takes calculated, measured risks. Through footage and some interviews, director Sara Dosa shows the Kraffts in their daring exploits, filming, photographing and recording volcanoes--and getting within feet of lava flows.

The National Geographic documentary team behind this film has evidently spent a sizable portion of time collecting stunning natural footage and archival video and sound to tell the story of this legendary duo. They team successfully assemble a great audiovisual gallery.... But the film needs something more. There are times where inserted music and natural footage seems to take over the storyline and bring things to a halt. We get heartwarming glimpses of the couple's dynamic with one another--for the majority of the Fire of Love, we see the Kraffts at work, discussing their pursuits--but it would have been great to see more of them talking to one another, reflecting one-on-one. The film seems to waver between their relationship and their work, without discussing the intersection of both very clearly. For example, a question I wish was answered better by the film was how the two maintained a work-life balance. The most compelling, moving part of Fire of Love is the couple's blazing end--they died in a 1991 volcanic explosion in Japan--and it was captured with such deep emotion that I was left speechless.

Fire of Love is all about companionship, teamwork, and following your passion. There are of course some daring stunts performed in the film--the Kraffts, after all, are in a dangerous line of work.

I give Fire of Love 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Fire of Love is available in theaters now.

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

The film Fire of Love is a documentary full of information about volcanoes and the live story of Maurice and Katia Krafft. It takes the audience through a range of emotions including love, fear and curiosity. You're sure to leave this movie with a new appreciation for volcanoes. Most of all, you will be inspired to follow your dreams.

This documentary follows a couple, Maurice and Katia Krafft, who are volcanologists. Their interest in volcanoes started at an early age, and their love for volcanoes is what brought them together. In the film, we see close-ups of erupting volcanoes and, at times, the devastating aftermath. Maurice and Katia traveled across the globe studying them and, in most cases, risking their lives to do so.

The great thing about this film is that most of the photographs and videos included were actually taken by Katia and Maurice. This gives the film an authentic feel as we get to observe volcanoes through the eyes of volcanologists. From France, Maurice and Katia mostly speak French throughout the film, though Katia speaks some English. However, the film is narrated by Miranda July, which helps the audience better understand what is happening. In the film, we learn about Maurice's peculiar dreams. For example, he wanted to canoe down a river of lava into the water, and he wanted to live on the volcanoes; if only he could eat rock. Something else I really like about the film is the relationship between Katia and Maurice. Even though Maurice wants to do these things that even Katia thinks are crazy, she still wants to be with him. She loves him and doesn't want him to do it alone, even if it means dying together.

The message of Fire of Love is that curiosity is stronger than fear. Even though it is very dangerous to get as close to an active volcano as they do, that doesn't stop them. Some of the videos and photographs in the film may be disturbing to younger viewers, but it is a wonderful documentary to watch with your family.

I give Fire of Love 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 12 to 18, plus adults. It is available now in in theaters. Be sure to check it out!

Giana N., KIDSFIRST! Film Critic, Age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
GRAY MAN, THE
GRAY MAN, THE - NETFLIX
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Description - The Gray Man is CIA operative Court Gentry (Ryan Gosling), aka, Sierra Six. Plucked from a federal penitentiary and recruited by his handler, Donald Fitzroy (Billy Bob Thornton), Gentry was once a highly-skilled, Agency-sanctioned merchant of death. But now the tables have turned and Six is the target, hunted across the globe by Lloyd Hansen (Chris Evans), a former cohort at the CIA, who will stop at nothing to take him out. Agent Dani Miranda (Ana de Armas) has his back. He'll need it.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Gray Man is, first and foremost, a classic spy movie. The draw of its elaborate action scenes, the size of its cast and the charisma of its lead performances keep it afloat in the pool of familiarity.

Court Gentry (Ryan Gosling) is a CIA operative who carries out killings of whomever they desire, as part of a deal he made decades ago to dodge prison time. On a job in Bangkok, as he dies, his target reveals the unexpected kinship he holds with Court and gives him a drive containing damning information about the people Court works for. These two discoveries force him to drop everything and go on the run with the intel. Back at the CIA, Court's boss (Reg�-Jean Page) is furious about the intel leak and Court's betrayal. In response, Court's boss calls in a former operative named Lloyd Hansen (Chris Evans). Rejected by the CIA for his violent, psychotic methods and his lack of concern to amend them, Lloyd has no qualms about eliminating whoever stands between him and his mission's objective. And so, a cat and mouse chase begins between Court and Lloyd, a battle of wits and ability that tracks the entire globe.

The Gray Man has a lot going on besides Chris Evans and Ryan Gosling, but they are absolutely the reasons to see this movie. Ryan Gosling tones Court down-- you really believe he was nurtured in his line of work, not born into it. Gosling is eternally tired in the role. Every obstacle, every adversary gets the same tossed off "Are we really doing this?" look from Gosling. Yet there's also an eternal spark: his wit, as if the opportunity to fire off a quip is what keeps him going through stab wounds and raining gunfire. The quipping brings something new to this spy archetype--the sense that this is just a particularly tough day on the job for Court and Gosling communicates that really well.

Every performance has its equal opposite reaction; so the yin to Gosling's yang is Chris Evans as Lloyd Hansen. Where Gosling is just barely limping his way from explosion to explosion, Evans is confidently striding after him. He walks into this movie with a prominent mustache on his lip, or "trashstache," as Court calls it, and a smile on his face, ready to do his thing. Lloyd enjoys his job. He waxes poetic about the joys of improv in torturing and the opportunity to kill the prized asset of his former employee only sweetens the deal and raises his spirits. Evans is whistling and skipping as he inflicts government-sanctioned mayhem. It's fun to watch him play a character this unraveled and unafraid of any repercussions for his psychotic actions.

The Gray Man also features setpiece upon setpiece of impressive action. It's not always the best-presented, and the editing can be discombobulating, but there are points where directors Russos find their footing. And the magnitude of some of the confrontations between Court and enemy forces also make seeing this movie worthwhile. A tram racing through the streets of Prague with Ryan Gosling dodging enemy fire, for example, or a fistfight in the middle of a firework launcher with fireworks erupting all around--there are moments in The Gray Man that are undeniably cool.

There is no real lesson to The Gray Man other than maybe staying out of the hitman industry. However, there are moments of action in The Gray Man where scale and invention and starpower all line up for something that feels truly thrilling. Even if it doesn't reinvent the wheel and it feels as if The Gray Man lacks an "X-factor" to set it apart from other cinematic spy fare, it's a reminder of why the genre is so irresistible: the stars, the scope, and elite operatives with big personalities and shifting allegiances.

I give The Gray Man 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults, for language, intense action, and multiple instances of torture. The Gray Man is in theaters for a brief period starting July 15, 2022, and launches on Netflix globally on July 22, 2022.

By Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 16
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LONESOME TRAIL, THE
LONESOME TRAIL, THE - FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT PRODUCTIONS
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 5-18
Description - The story begins when a cattle baron starts using trail hands to terrorize homesteaders in a small mining town a preacher comes to the rescue. With a Bible, not a gun this man is able to sway the homesteaders into standing their ground for their rights to free land. The homesteaders are rallied by preacher Carson to hold their position and not be frightened away by the constant barrage of raids on their families. Mike McCray, the cattle baron, doesn't stand for the resistance, claps back and causes much damage to the preacher's family and homesteaders. Frustrated with the outcome, one of the preacher's own family members turns against him and sides with the McCray clan.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - A blast to the past! The Lonesome Trail captures the dramatic and heartwarming history of how faith is used to keep hope during dark times.

The Lonesome Trail, set in the American cowboy era, follows a preacher named Brent Carson (Peter Wray) who just recently moves to a small mining town. With the help of the local teacher Elizabeth Turner (Kelly Schwartz), he makes it his mission to ensure that the new visitors are welcomed and accepted despite their race and ethnicity. However, he faces some challenges when the town founder Mike McCray (Donald Imm) starts plotting to remove him and other new residents out of town.

The Lonesome Trail captures the true environment of an old western film quite well. I am a big fan of Western films starring Black actors such as Buck and the Preacher with the award-winning Sidney Poitier. However, some modern elements do not mesh well in this film such as the appearance of some of the characters where the haircuts of the male characters are too modern. The sets and props are authentic to the time. The cinematography gives us an old Western vibe however; in some instances you cannot fully see the characters because the lighting overexposes the actors. Another thing that makes a Western film special is the set. This was clearly shot against a greenscreen and I missed having it take place on an actual Western set. I am curious if director Arlette Thomas-Fletcher did this intentionally in order to provide the audience with what a film may have looked like in the 1950s. The music is appropriate to the theme. The twangy, western tune that is often heard during tense moments makes the film feel familiar and nostalgic. My favorite character is Preacher Carson because, in every scene, he seems like a genuine person that you would want to get to know in real life. My favorite scene is when Preacher Carson stands up to Mike McCray. I love how he uses faith to combat the hardships he faces. What an important lesson, especially in times of difficulty.

The message of The Lonesome Trail is to be true to who you are and be kind to others. In times of inequality and unfairness, we must respect each other and have faith. You should be aware that this film contains scenes that mention racial inequality.

I give The Lonesome Trail 4 out 5 stars and I recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. The Lonesome Trail comes out on digital July 12, 2022.

By Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
Juror Recommended Age: 5-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
PAWS OF FURY: THE LEGEND OF HANK
PAWS OF FURY: THE LEGEND OF HANK - PARAMOUNT PICTURES
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 8-12
Description - A down-on-his-luck hound Hank (Michael Cera) finds himself in a town full of cats who need a hero to defend them from a ruthless villain's (Ricky Gervais) evil plot to wipe their village off the map. With help from a reluctant teacher (Samuel L. Jackson) to train him, our underdog must assume the role of town samurai and team up with the villagers to save the day. The only problem... cats hate dogs! Also starring Mel Brooks, George Takei, Aasif Mandvi, Gabriel Iglesias, Djimon Hounsou, Michelle Yeoh, Kylie Kuioka, and Cathy Shim.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank is a new action comedy movie that will have you captivated from the beginning. With a star-studded cast, and a simple plot, the audience will be able to relate to the movie and enjoy the story.

Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank is about a loveable dog named Hank (Michael Cera). All Hank wants is to become an incredible samurai. When he finds himself in a town desperate for one, he thinks he's going to get what he's always wanted. But there's a problem--it's a town full of cats, and he doesn't know how to be a samurai. After receiving help from an ex samurai named Jimbo (Samuel L. Jackson), he has to find a way to save the town and prove to everyone--including himself--that he can be great.

Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank is a very lighthearted and enjoyable movie. Something that impressed me about this film is the animation of the cats. Each cat has its own distinctive look and personality, which makes it easier to tell them apart. For instance, Ichiro (Aasif Mandvi) and Chuck (Gabriel Iglesias) are best friends whose characteristics complement each other. Ichiro is a long-haired, black and white cat, while Chuck is a chubby, white and orange cat. We would never mistake one for the other due to their unique appearances. One reason that Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank is so comedic, is because of the pairing of Michael Cera with Samuel L. Jackson as Hank and Jimbo. The banter between the two is very sarcastic and their delivery is very fast paced. The scenes with both of them move the story forward, while also making the audience want more from them. The training montage, when Jimbo is helping Hank, is sure to be a fan favorite as it showcases the harsh but humorous personality Samuel L. Jackson is known for. Casting director Debra Zane certainly picked the perfect actors for these roles. Having such well-known and talented actors in the film makes it increases its appeal.

The message of Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank is that everyone deserves the chance to be successful. No matter who you are or what you look like, everyone should be treated fairly. For example, even though Hank is a dog, he still deserves to be taken seriously as he attempts to become a samurai.

I give Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 7 to 14, although anyone can enjoy this film. Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank releases in theaters on July 15, 2022. So make sure you check it out!

By Maica N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, Age 14

Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank is a hilarious animated film that the whole family will love! It has an all-star cast, hilarious one-liners, and very clever cat jokes.

Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank follows Hank (Michael Cera), a dog who travels across the border with dreams of becoming a samurai. After almost being killed, he is offered a job defending a town in need of a hero to defend them, but the cat-filled town hates dogs. He is quickly taken under the wing by Jimbo (Samuel L. Jackson) a once great samurai who is now addicted to catnip. The storyline is all about friendships and learning to love people that are different from you.

This movie is hysterical. There are way too many cat jokes to count. There isn't much music in the film, but there is one sad scene that has music that matches it perfectly. I love the animation in the flashback scenes, it looks like a comic book! This cast is great! Every voice fits the character perfectly. I especially love the character of Emiko (Heavenly Joy) because her character is so sassy and she really voices her well. Samuel L. Jackson is hilarious as Jimbo, and never disappoints us. My favorite part of film is when Ika Chau is about to be pushed into a giant toilet bowl and says, "Wait, I have something to tell you," and proceeds to say, "Luke, I am your father." Then, he laughs it off and says he was joking.

The message of Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank is to follow your dreams. Hank worked so hard to become a samurai, and in the end, everything works out for him because he never gives up.

I give Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theatres July 15, 2022.

By Kendall B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 8-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MRS. HARRIS GOES TO PARIS
MRS. HARRIS GOES TO PARIS - FOCUS FEATURES
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 8-18
Description - Mrs. Harris Goes To Paris tells the story of a widowed cleaning lady in 1950s London who falls madly in love with a couture Dior dress, and decides that she must have one of her own. After she works, starves and gambles to raise the funds to pursue her dream, she embarks on an adventure to Paris which will change not only her own outlook, but the very future of the House of Dior.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris is an exciting fashionable adventure. It's comedic and moving at the same time, and is definitely entertaining.

Based on the 1958 book by Paul Gallico, Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris is set in the 1950s and follows Mrs. Harris (Lesley Manville), a widowed cleaning lady from London who feels very lost after the recent death of her husband. She seems to be struggling with what to do next, but realizes that when she listens to heart, her husband is leading her in the right direction. With hard work and a little luck, Mrs. Harris is able to save up and take a trip to Paris to come in contact with her real dream -- a Christian Dior couture gown. While visiting the House of Dior, she realizes the true importance of Dior and helps others acknowledge this along the way.

This film really taps into the 1950s era with sets, costumes and locations that fit the decade. The film takes into account all the events happening at the time and incorporates them into the storyline. For example, the war had just ended and that is referred to multiple times, and woven into the story. There was also a strike in Paris going on that led to dirty streets, which we see in the film. In so many ways, the film is so true to the era and you see it in a multitude of details. I really enjoyed seeing how fashion is incorporated into the movie. Since the storyline revolves around a major fashion designer, Christian Dior, and his brand, we see how that affected society across from many socio-economic backgrounds. There is a lot of fashion history included in the film, which is especially interesting to me, since I love fashion. I enjoyed how each character's wardrobe is so outstanding and typical of the 1950s.

The message of Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris is to always follow your heart, and stick up for what you believe in.

I give Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris opens in theaters July 15, 2022.

By Mikella G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

I enjoyed Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris and so will people who stand up for what they believe. Ada Harris is an admirable character that serves as a positive role model.

The storyline follows Ada Harris (Lesley Manville), a 1950s widowed housekeeper. After falling in love with a Dior dress, Mrs. Harris decides she must have one of them and takes off on a journey to Paris, where she discovers what she truly needs in life.

I love everything about how this film looks from the scenery, to the actors, the music, the script -- everything fits the storyline so perfectly. All the actors are fabulous; every prop is in the exact right place; there is just so much hard work put into this film and it really shows. One of the most outstanding contributions to the movie is from the writers. The script is so perfect. Mrs. Harris' story sticks out to me because, while all of the other characters are young and have years to figure out what's important to them, Mrs. Harris is already half way through her life, and still isn't truly happy. Alba Baptista who plays Natasha did an amazing job! I loved her performance so much! My favorite scene is the Dior fashion show. Everything about that scene is terrific; the dresses are beautiful, the actresses playing the models made me feel as if I was in the Dior showroom.

The message of Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris is to never give up. Mrs. Harris is determined to help the workers at Dior when she helps them strike. She is determined to buy the dress, and best of all, she never gives up.

I give Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18 plus adults. It releases in theatres on July 15, 2022.

By Kendall B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11

Fashionable, inspiring and magical are just the words to describe Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris! Based on the book of the same name by Paul Gallico, this film will make you smile and encourage you to follow you heart and dreams. This wouldn't be a fairytale without a dress, and this princess wants a Christian Dior dress from Paris.

Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris follows Mrs. Ada Harris (Lesley Manville), a post war widow and housekeeper in London, who becomes mesmerized with one of her wealthy client's Christian Dior dresses. Mrs. Harris decides she must have the dress, which was created by the House of Dior in Paris, France. She doesn't quite have the money to purchase the dress or even get to Paris, but she doesn't let that stand in her way. Through luck, other's kindness and hard work, Mrs. Harris gets the chance to try to fulfill her dream.

This is a must-see family film. This film is a heartwarming, drama-filled romantic story of Mrs. Harris and her trip to Paris, as she searches for what she wants, but also gets more than what she thinks she needs. Mrs. Harris is a strong protagonist. Fans should not make the mistake some of the film's characters do and underestimate Mrs. Harris. She is fierce and witty; looks out for everyone and is sure to be a fan favorite. From the Dior fashion show scenes, the stunning Dior dresses, and the behind-the-scenes shots -- this film gives a real insider tour of the Paris fashion world in the 1950s. The Christian Dior dress Mrs. Harris wants symbolizes dreams, newfound respect, an opportunity to be seen again and overall, a new life for her. Throughout the film, you will emotionally connect and relate to Mrs. Harris and her journey. The flow of this film is perfect, and all the characters are likable and relatable.

Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris is about dreaming big and following your dreams despite any obstacles that may get in your way. We all want "something" in life. Mrs. Harris dreamed about going to Paris and purchasing the sparkly Dior dress. She didn't let lack of money, discrimination or anything else hold her back from trying to get her dress. Parents should be aware there are scenes with drinking and some rude language.

I give Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 8 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theaters July 15, 2022.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DISNEY SUMMER MAGIC QUEST
DISNEY SUMMER MAGIC QUEST - WALT DISNEY STUDIOS
Series: TV SHORT, AGES 5-12
Description - Disney's Summer Magic Quest, the third installment of Disney's popular "Magic Quest" specials, is set to debut with Zombies 3 stars Meg Donnelly, Pearce Joza, Kylee Russell, and Matt Cornett competing in a playful battle royal featuring new monumental challenges. This installment takes our competitors through the iconic locations of EPCOT where the impossible becomes possible. The two teams race around the world and beyond, competing throughout all four neighborhoods. The competing stars also get premiere access to the all-new Wonders of Xandar Pavilion with the "Guardians of the Galaxy": Cosmic Rewind attraction and get an insider's look into the Remy's Ratatouille Adventure attraction.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Are you ready for the most exciting adventure of this summer? Disney's Summer Magic Quest is an entertaining game show full of crazy challenges and thrilling quests that's sure to keep you anxiously anticipating the newest experiences at Epcot Center in Disney World.

In this next installment of the Disney Magic Quest specials, we follow the stars of the new movie Zombies 3 as they go head-to-head across the world, and beyond, in Walt Disney World's Epcot Park after hours. During the show, Team Red and Team Blue compete in games and try out the exciting new rides that Epcot has to offer all while trying to win the first ever Disney Summer Magic Quest.

Disney Summer Magic Quest is so much fun to watch. It is so interesting to see some of the cast of the Zombies movies, such as Milo Manheim, Meg Donnelly, Matt Cornett, Kylee Russell, and Pearce Joza, outside of their movie character personas and to watch their own, genuine reactions. The competitors also get access to the Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind and Remy's Ratatouille Adventure rides, which really makes me want to go to Epcot now! The cinematography is excellent, as it perfectly captures and enhances all the challenges.

The message of Disney Summer Magic Quest is to both celebrate the world and give back to it. Note that the activities of the stars in the parks should not be performed while visiting the park on your own.

I give Disney Summer Magic Quest 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12, plus adults. It releases on Disney Channel June 26, 2022 and comes to Disney+ August 12, 2022.
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
THOR: LOVE AND THUNDER
THOR: LOVE AND THUNDER - WALT DISNEY STUDIOS MOTION PICTURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12-18
Description - movie reviews, by kids for kids,thor,love and thunder,Taika Waititi,Marvel Cinematic Universe,appetite for destruction,Avengers: Endgame,Chris Hemsworth,Guardians of the Galaxy,Marvel Universe,Gorr the God Butcher,Christian Bale,Natalie Portman,Zeus
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Marvel Studio's Thor: Love and Thunder officially redefines the definition of film and on-screen art. Taika Waititi's background as a painter can be seen throughout the film, through the use of a vibrant color scheme and specific tint isolation. This is incredibly aesthetically pleasing and, quite frankly, nothing that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has shown us before. Matched with a rocking soundtrack -- Appetite for Destruction from Guns N' Roses, Thor: Love and Thunder is quite literally an "appetite for destruction."

Thor: Love and Thunder picks up after the events of Avengers: Endgame. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is still tagging along as one of the Guardians of the Galaxy. After all his paths have been severed from his battles with Thanos, he finds himself without a pathway. In all of his thousands of years of living, this has never been a concept that Thor has had to tackle. This puts him on a journey of self-exploration. Although, obviously in the Marvel Universe, that can only last so long when the new villain Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale) comes to town. Gorr vows that "all gods will die." Thor recruits the help of his ex-girlfriend Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) who seemingly became a Thor herself. These two learn to work together to defeat Gorr and how to navigate the world while rekindling their old relationship.

Thor: Love and Thunder emphasizes the idea of "love" in the title because that's how audiences will feel about the film's color variations and banging soundtrack. Christian Bale completely steals the entire show as Gorr the God Butcher. In every scene he is in, your eyes are glued to his worldly-like presence on the screen. Although he is terrifying, the audience will not be able to get enough of him. Christian Bale finds a way to make this a Christian Bale film and not a Chris Hemsworth film. As much as Gorr the God Butcher's storyline is golden, which is ironic given his black and white color scheme, other branches of the film feel unnecessary. During the film, certain plot points are used that feel somewhat like a cheap excuse to move the story forward. The characters spend a solid 30 minutes exploring something new, yet later we learn that it has no overall impact or relevance to the story. Part of the film is wasted on the focus of Zeus. It may be comedic and light-hearted in the moment, yet it almost feels like it is only introduced to help set up future Marvel projects, rather than focus on the film we are currently watching.

If the title doesn't make it obvious, the film deals with the theme of love persevering and expresses the concept that relationships aren't forever, but the love behind them is eternal. Following previous Marvel content Thor: Love and Thunder continues the trend of pushing PG-13 boundaries and getting darker. When I say that Christian Bale is incredibly terrifying, that is really true. Marvel does not hold back on his character, especially when a large part of his role is about abducting children. Given that, plus the barrel of intense action throughout the film, this film is not to be taken lightly.

I give Thor: Love and Thunder 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. You can find Thor: Love and Thunder raining its way into theatres on July 8, 2022. So make sure to check it out!

By Jude A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

This ends here and now ... Thor is back with a comedic, out-of-this-world all-new adventure! This new installment about the God of Thunder, Thor: Love and Thunder has everything a Marvel fan could want. With two Thors making an appearance, you get things you didn't know you wanted and needed. It's called "Love and Thunder," so of course there is plenty of love.

Thor: Love and Thunder starts with a backstory about a villain named Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale) as he experiences a great loss and seeks help from a God. When he refuses to help him, Gorr wants revenge and goes on a mission to kill all Gods. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) learns of Gorr's quest and un-retires to go save his home, Asgard. Along the way, his ex-girlfriend, Dr. Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), now the Mighty Thor with Thor's powers, joins him to help save Asgard and the Gods.

The main characters in this film are Thor, Jane Foster, King Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Korg (Taika Waititi) and Gorr the God Butcher. Thor's comeback, wearing a rock-and-roll outfit and set to 80s music, is epic! Make-up, especially for Gorr, is realistic, creepy and jaw-dropping. This film allows you to connect with each character on a different level where you care about each of them, even Gorr. It's the perfect balance between romance, tragedy, comedy, drama and action. My favorite part is the fight scene with a new generation of warriors, including a surprise appearance from another Marvel character's son. There is even a hilarious scene with a stuffed bunny used as a weapon. Marvel and Disney are leading the way for more LGBTQ+ representation in their movies, and Thor: Love and Thunder is a great reflection of today's society.

Thor: Love and Thunder's theme is that love is worth fighting for. All the main characters battle for the thing and/or person that they love the most. They are all in pain, seeking love and want revenge for how they feel, and are willing to fight for it. Parents should be aware that there is a brief nudity scene, some mild cursing, and heavy topics such as cancer and relationships.

Marvel has outdone itself with Thor: Love and Thunder and I give it 5 out of 5 hammers. This may be the funniest, "lovingest," and most entertaining Marvel film yet. I recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. You can watch this movie in theatres starting July 8, 2022.

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

I like the new Marvel Cinematic Universe release Thor: Love and Thunder because of how comical and emotional it is. I also like that the movie has a female kind of Thor, Jane (Natalie Portman), who becomes as powerful or more than Thor.

Continuing from Avengers: Endgame, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) has to get in shape so he can help the Guardians of the Galaxy's team fight off enemies on other planets. While this is happening, somewhere in the desert, Gorr (Christian Bale) the God Butcher is trying to save his daughter from dying and asks the god of his planet for help, but the god declines, laughing at him. The god previously kills a man holding a sword called the Necrosword, the only sword that can kill gods. The sword chooses Gorr, and then Gorr grabs the sword and kills his god and sets out to kill all gods.

The graphics and CGI in Thor: Love and Thunder are exciting. The visual effects technology used in this movie is the same as used in The Mandalorian. The audience can see a muscular Jane Foster with arms noticeably bigger in this film. Her costume is on point, similar to Thor's. The music really rocks on every scene, literally. My favorite part is when Thor has to help a planet, since the Guardians of the Galaxy couldn't, so he took off his cloak and went on a rampage while throwing in some comedy at the same time. Another favorite part is when Zeus (Russell Crowe) flicks his disguise and that accidently takes all of it off--at that point Thor screams, "You flicked a little too hard." This film has other great actors, including Matt Damon, Chris Pratt, Melissa McCarthy, Sam Neill, Vin Diesel and Taika Waititi.

There are multiple moral messages in this film, but the most important one is love is more important than greed or revenge. Gorr learns this the hard way while facing Thor.

I'd give Thor: Love and Thunder 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18 plus adults. Thor: Love and Thunder will be released on July 8, 2022.

Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

Thanks to this new film based on the Marvel character, Thor, I am now a lifelong fan of comic book-inspired movies. If you plan to see Thor: Love and Thunder be prepared to laugh and cry. Prepare to spend two hours on the edge of your seat.

The storyline follows Thor, the God of Thunder (Chris Hemsworth), who sets out to defeat Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale), an unhinged villain determined to single-handedly make god extinct. With the assistance of Korg (Taika Waititi), ex-love interest Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) and King Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Thor sets out to protect the gods and rescue the guardian children.

Director, Taika Waititi, delivers an action-packed comedy that tugs at the emotions. If you are, like me prone to cry at sentimental films, be prepared to shed a tear. Thor: Love and Thunder serves up nonstop laughter, fear, excitement, sadness and love. The fourth film in the Thor movie collection follows the God of Thunder as he is jolted from his carefree retirement when a father scorned, turned deity-slayer attempts to end humanity. Fortunately for Thor, his trusted friends refuse to let him enter the battle alone. Chris Hemsworth is absolutely consuming in his portrayal of Thor. Hemsworth is charming, unintentionally hilarious, and an unbreakable warrior whom you can not help but love. In an unexpected twist, Dr. Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) is called to power by Thor's old weapon, the hammer Mjolnir. Fully equipped with the strength of a Thor and the will to fight, Jane Foster is a mystical wonder on the battlefield and on camera. We witness Jane Foster and Thor fall back in love as they save the world. This review would be incomplete if I did not mention the spectacular onscreen work of Tessa Thompson, who plays King Valkyrie. Her leadership, relentless devotion to her kingdom, and dedication to her friends makes her one of my favorite characters.

The film Thor: Thunder and Love teaches us that the most profound mission in life is helping others; a second powerful theme is the power of love. Whether the love is between friends, spouses, or parent and child, when gifted with the chance to experience it, you should embrace the opportunity. Note: there is a scene where Thor is stripped of his clothing and the camera flashes to his exposed back side.

Thanks to this film I now consider myself a Marvel fan. I give Thor: Thunder and Love 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. Thor: Thunder and Love releases in theaters July 8, 2022.

By Hanadie K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
JAZZ FEST: A NEW ORLEANS STORY
JAZZ FEST: A NEW ORLEANS STORY - SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT
Series: DOCUMENTARY, AGES 12 - 18
Description - Jazz Fest: A New Orleans Story weaves together live performances and interviews from the 50th anniversary of the iconic festival, featuring some of the biggest names in the music industry, along with a wealth of archival documentary footage from the past half century. This film not only captures the Festival in all of its beauty and glory, but also delves deep into the rich culture of The Big Easy.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Jazz Fest: A New Orleans Story is a one-hour-and-a-half documentary about the history of the annual Jazz Fest in New Orleans. A Jazz Fest documentary would not have been my first choice to watch, but I did I learn something new and would like to visit the Jazz Fest in New Orleans one day. And, if you are a person who is interested in jazz music and the history behind it, this is absolutely the movie for you.

This film is about one of America's greatest festivals held in Louisiana, New Orleans. Jazz Fest: A New Orleans Story takes a deep dive into the meaningful history and culture behind the iconic jazz fest. Furthermore, the movie shows the celebration of the music and the food of Louisiana.

There is so much talent and extraordinary culture that brings this wonderful event to life. Clips shown of the different jazz performances and cultural dancing all display the beauty behind it all. It's wonderful to see how they can keep the traditions and cultural aspects of Jazz Fest alive. From this documentary you will learn why the festival has a deeper meaning than just a fun festival that happens every year. It brings a positive and warm feeling to the people who attend Jazz Fest, while making the culture known and bringing awareness. Additionally, there were inspirational dance acts with beautiful clothing. The dance portrayed the meaning of the music while being played. This was my favorite part and very cool to watch.

I give Jazz Fest: A New Orleans Story 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. It is available in theaters June 10, 2022.


Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
FOR ALL MANKIND
FOR ALL MANKIND - APPLE TV
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 12-18
Description - The propulsive new season of the alternate-reality series takes viewers to a new decade, moving into the early '90s with a high-octane race to a new planetary frontier: MARS. The Red Planet becomes the new front in the Space Race not only for the U.S. and the Soviet Union, but also an unexpected new entrant with a lot to prove and even more at stake. Our characters find themselves going head-to-head as their ambitions for Mars come into conflict and their loyalties are tested, creating a pressure cooker that builds to a climactic conclusion.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - See youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Are you looking for a good TV series that's quite literally out of this world? Well, if you are, then Season 3 of For All Mankind is the perfect choice for you! It doesn't matter if viewers are not up to speed or have missed the first two seasons -- this next series of episodes is so full of suspense and unpredictable circumstances that viewers are able to jump right in and enjoy it. Whether you are a NASA enthusiast, have a love for science fiction, or you really enjoy history, For All Mankind will not disappoint you.

For All Mankind is a science fiction drama series which poses to viewers the question, "what if?" What if, for example, history didn't happen as we know it? Season 3 episodes expose viewers to an alternative global space race that puts the Soviet Union in the lead ahead of the United States. As the United States is defeated in their race to put the first man on the moon, NASA must now work with great speed and efficiency to make certain that this alternative history doesn't repeat itself in the race to inhabit Mars! This renewed challenge has a new twist in which a third contender enters the space race--an ambitious, independent entrepreneur. Who will be the first to cross that finish line? You'll have to watch the series to find out!

What I enjoyed most about For All Mankind is that you never know what's coming next. Events are unpredictable and have you sitting on the edge of your seat. Some of the scenes are slow at times which allows viewers to critically think and imagine what's ahead within the episode. I also enjoyed how emotionally intense this series is. You don't have to be a part of that generation in history to appreciate For All Mankind. Anyone can enjoy these episodes which are brilliantly written, supported by a talented cast, and that offer such tremendous cinematography.

For All Mankind is a timely film series that provides us with a strong sense of teamwork which encourages people to work together despite division in society. The NASA team, made up of diversified astronauts, works so closely on their race to be the first to reach the Red Planet. There are plenty of obstacles on this path to success, yet with their strong communication, decision making, and optimism, the U.S. Space Team is determined to come out the winner.

I give For All Mankind 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Season 3 began streaming on Apple TV+ June 10, 2022. This is a great series and one you won't want to miss.

By Dominic D., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
DINOSAUR COVE
DINOSAUR COVE - CRYSTAL CREEK MEDIA
Series: FEATURE, AGES 8-18
Description - Dinosaur Cove is a family adventure film about a boy who discovers dinosaur eggs and must protect them from a crazy scientist.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth reviews
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Dinosaur Cove is an enthralling adventure film with a simple, yet sweet plot and high-quality cinematography. It's a superb family-friendly film and will certainly entertain dinosaur-lovers!

The film follows Riley Harrison (Brayden Eaton), an adventurous young boy. Riley discovers pteranodon eggs in the town where his grandfather lives, aptly named Dinosaur Cove. With the help of Dr. Theresa Starr (Holly Houk), he must protect them from a mad scientist named Dr. Victor Vandersaurian (James Pilachowski) and get them to safety. Throughout his journey, he strengthens old bonds, especially with his writer father Wyatt Harrison (Jared Withrow), whom he has grown distant from after his mother's passing.

Director Daniel Knudsen hits another home run with Dinosaur Cove. It's evident he's coached the talented actors very well -- they deliver dialogues naturally and emote organically. The script by Derrick Steele is also wonderful; there are no stilted scenes where dialogue feels unnatural. I also love Knudsen's cameo in the film as egg expert Terrance Walker. The cinematography is incredible and I especially love the ending shot of pteranodons flying across the horizon at sunset. It's easy for a romantic subplot to be underdeveloped in an indie film, but the subtle romance between Wyatt Harrison and Dr. Theresa Starr is one of the most heartwarming parts of the film and provides for superb character development, especially in the case of Wyatt, who is recovering from the loss of his wife just a year ago. Jared Withrow and Holly Houk do justice to their roles.

Dinosaur Cove promotes always doing the right thing, even if no one is watching. It also emphasizes teamwork and protecting the vulnerable. It truly is a film with great, family-friendly messages.

I give Dinosaur Cove 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8-12, plus adults. Dinosaur Cove released on June 1, 2022 on digital.

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

Who doesn't love a good dinosaur story? Dinosaur Cove is here to entertain you and widen your imagination. With a fun mystery, interesting characters, and a surprising twist, this movie will have you wondering... could dinosaurs still exist?

Dinosaur Cove is about a young boy named Riley (Brayden Eaton) who moves with his dad Jared (Wyatt Harrison) to his grandfather's house after his mom passes away. While they are there, Jared is busy working on a book and Riley is running into trouble. After seeing something that he thinks is a dinosaur, he has to prove that what he saw was real, and then protect it from an evil scientist.

Although the CGI isn't the best, it really helps enhance the plot of the movie. The images of the dinosaurs and the eggs allow the viewers to visualize what it would be like to live amongst dinosaurs. There aren't many dinosaur movies aimed at younger children being released, so Dinosaur Cove is really refreshing. It's a clean and entertaining movie that kids can enjoy. However, although its focus is younger children, there is a deeper meaning and a thicker storyline as Jared is grieving the loss of his wife and Riley's mom. It also shows the process of moving on, and how resilience is a key part of life. This creates a part of the story that older audiences may relate to. At some points of the film, the audio track is uneven, which can be distracting. Nevertheless, Dinosaur Cove is a humorous and action packed movie that will be enjoyed by kids and families.

The message of Dinosaur Cove is that being open-minded can lead you to something amazing. If you rule something out too quickly, you could be missing out on a significant opportunity.

I rate Dinosaur Cove 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. Dinosaur Cove is available now on Digital, so make sure you check it out!

Maica N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critics, Age 14

Dinosaur Cove is an exhilarating and fun new film that younger children will love! It has great characters and a story that is equally fun. The dinosaurs add the perfect amount of fantasy to the story.

The storyline follows Riley (Brayden Eaton), his dad and his grandpa who have just moved to Dinosaur Cove! As soon as he arrives he finds a creature (a dinosaur) obviously. But the problem is, nobody except for his best friend, Savannah (Addilyn Houk), believes him. Little does he know there's an evil scientist that wants to capture the dinosaur. Can Riley keep his new friend safe?

Something about this film that really sticks out is the songs. I love their poetic lyrics and the melodies are great too. The scenery and cinematography is really beautiful, specifically the shots of ocean. I love the scene when the dad is driving his boat, because the water looks amazing. But by far my favorite scene is earlier in the film, when one of Riley's new friends hits a golf ball into a man's window, hands the golf club to Riley and runs away.

The message of Dinosaur Cove is that teamwork is great. The kids work together in many different situations, but it's not just the kids. The adults also help out in some circumstances. One thing to be aware of is the use of a tranquilizer gun and the fact that the kids go exploring a lot without telling their parents and, in a few cases, end up in dangerous situations as a result.

I give Dinosaur Cove 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 12. Dinosaur Cove is available now on digital platforms.

By Kendall B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11

Dinosaur Cove is a movie fit for the whole family, packed with mad scientists, secret agents, and, of course, dinosaurs! Although predictable at times, this film will be very entertaining to young dinosaur lovers.

Coping with the loss of his mother, Riley Harrison (Brayden Eaton) and his father, Wyatt (Jared Withrow) move across the country to live with his grandfather in Dinosaur Cove, which is known for the massive number of fossils found in the area. Riley stumbles upon a top-secret project called the Genesis Project, which, coincidentally, brought dinosaurs back from extinction. And when a Pteranodon escapes, Riley must protect her and her eggs from the evil scientists at the Genesis Project.

I love the sets and locations that Dinosaur Cove features. The beach and forest scenery is absolutely stunning, and the Genesis Project Lab looks very realistic with advanced technology and complex-looking machines. Even though the Pteranodon doesn't look as realistic as it might in a high-budget movie, it still feels like the dinosaur is really alive. My favorite acting performances are from James Pilachowski (Dr. Victor Vandersaurian) and Emily Buckner (Izzy Luther.) James Pilachowski perfectly plays the evil, sometimes corny, scientist that we love to hate, and Emily Buckner, as his assistant, just tries to go along with him. Their chemistry is so strong (and enjoyable) especially in their back and forth banter.

The message of Dinosaur Cove is to believe in the impossible. It also has strong themes about the power of family, teamwork, and friendship. This movie has some violence.

I give Dinosaur Cove 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. It is available on streaming services June 1, 2022.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MR. MALCOLM'S LIST
MR. MALCOLM'S LIST - BLEECKER STREET MEDIA
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Description - When she fails to meet an item on his list of requirements for a bride, Julia Thistlewaite (Zawe Ashton) is jilted by London's most eligible bachelor, Mr. Malcolm (??p?� D�r�s�). Feeling humiliated and determined to exact revenge, she convinces her friend Selina Dalton (Freida Pinto) to play the role of his ideal match. Soon, Mr. Malcolm wonders whether he's found the perfect woman...or the perfect hoax. Also starring Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Ashley Park, with Theo James.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Mr. Malcolm's List is a heartwarming rom-com film. It's great to unwind to and I enjoyed it a lot.

The storyline takes place in the 19th century, following the lives of some of England's elite. It focuses on the actions of a mysterious wealthy suitor, Mr. Malcolm (Sope Dirisu) who is in search of the perfect wife, and every eligible lady is trying to get in front of him. However, Mr. Malcolm is very picky, and doesn't really care when he lets women down. When the main female character Julia (Zawe Ashton) isn't enough for him and gets publicly humiliated, she doesn't back down. Instead Julia brings in her good friend Selina (Freida Pinito) to give Mr. Malcolm a taste of his own medicine. In the end, things may not turn out as planned, but when they listen to their hearts, it all works out.

Something that I really enjoyed about this movie is its comedic aspects. There are multiple jokes thrown in here and there that really lighten the mood. Julia's character has quite a strong personality, and often says things that are very funny. Even the way that she talks about other people, or things she doesn't agree with are funny. It seems that most films today are very serious, so it's great to see a strong light-hearted movie. Additionally, there's a very strong storyline that kept me interested and wanting more. There is a lot of suspense throughout the film, as well as some surprising turnouts. I could never predict what would happen next. I also love the costume design, which suits the 19th century time period. Each outfit has so much attention to detail.

The message of Mr. Malcolm's List is that in the end, love and honesty will always make things right.

I give Mr. Malcolm's List 4 out of 5 stars, and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theaters July 1, 2022.

By Mikella G., KIDS FIRST!, Film Critic, age 16

Mr. Malcolm's List is the glamorous adventure of the year! The film transports fans into the Regency era for a tale filled with romance and exquisite music.

Mr. Malcolm's List is set in 1818, where the most eligible bachelor, Mr. James Malcolm (Sope Dirisu) looks for a wife. He meets Julia Thistlewaite (Zawe Ashton) who he believes isn't worthy of his courtship because she does not meet his list of qualifications for a wife. Julia is embarrassed in society's newspaper so she plans her revenge on Mr. Malcolm. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Suzanne Allain.

This film shows how Regency era pieces have taken the world by storm. The movie is lighthearted, overflowing with gorgeous dresses, beautiful ballrooms and witty comedy. There was a short film based on Mr. Malcolm's List previously released, with several cast members returning for this feature. It's wonderful to have the entire story fleshed out, taking its time to tell the entire tale without feeling rushed. Sam Heughan reprises his role as Henry. Audiences can see that he feels more comfortable with this role, which adds to the greatness of this character. The story itself is unique and keeps viewers on the edge of their seat. With the series Bridgerton giving fans several love stories with people who are head over heels for each other, it's refreshing to have Mr. Malcolm's List be the complete opposite. A woman taking revenge on a man for embarrassing her in society is as comedic as it is powerful. The writers have given Julia such power in proving herself worthwhile and she ends up finding love under unlikely circumstances. The film gives personality and color to our ideas of what people were like in the early 1800s. Two friends spending their free time pondering on how to ruin the life of the most eligible bachelor in London, just because they think it'll be fun, is exciting and totally unpredictable. Every second of this film is compelling.

The moral of this story is to honor yourself. Julia never lets anyone degrade her. Whereas some women during this time period would have let a man embarrass her and move on, Julia gives James a taste of his own medicine. She is never upset about not meeting his requirements, but instead becomes furious that he has a list to begin with.

I give Mr. Malcolm's List 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. The film releases in theaters July 1, 2022.

By Heather S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LEGEND OF THE ORO ARROWHEAD
LEGEND OF THE ORO ARROWHEAD - VISION FILMS
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Description - Ancient folklore speaks of a shaman who was given a golden arrowhead with the magical gift of truth and vitality. Deemed too dangerous by the tribe elders, it was hidden away for all time. Now, a power - hungry small-town mayor is bent on unearthing the arrowhead at all costs and a Ranger and a daughter of the Cherokee tribe are all that stand in her way.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Action and mystery never looked so good! Legend of Oro Arrowhead has an intriguing plot that keeps you on your toes throughout the entire film.

Legend of Oro Arrowhead follows Jim Powell (Stephen Thompson) who returns to his small hometown after his father dies. After interacting with some of the townspeople he becomes suspicious about how his dad died and why anyone would target him. After some digging for the truth, he unearths his father's past passion for finding a Native American Arrowhead that foretells the future. However, Jim is not the only one looking for it. Will he be able to find it and avenge his father?

Legend of Oro Arrowhead is an adventurous film that reminds me of classic Indiana Jones movies. I love movies that have you asking so many questions; it adds to the mystery of the film. My favorite scenes are with Gola (Vanessa Ore). Gola is a strong female character with a stubborn personality and wit. What I found interesting is that there are a lot of learning elements about Native Americans and their history. It always makes a movie more interesting when you can take some new information. The setting of the small town feels welcoming and familiar at first then it becomes the opposite -- almost eerie and creepy once the secrets are revealed. Another compelling aspect is that the antagonists are not your typical villains. They seem like just normal people, which is brilliant in my book. The suspense in this film is unmatched; the direction left no plot holes. The cinematography is clear and has an HD effect. While I love the action in this film, the execution falls a bit short. Some of the stunts are done poorly as well as some of the special effects. This brings down the quality of the rising action. While the plot, story line and characters are great, the cinematography and stunt work fall short.

The message of Legend of Oro Arrowhead is to stay true to who you are. This film promotes some positive behavior, but it does contain violence and smoking.

I give Legend of Oro Arrowhead 4 out 5 stars and recommend it to ages 12 to 18, plus adults. It is available now on Digital and DVD.

By Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Get ready for the adventure of your life when you experience Legend of Oro Arrowhead! A balance of mystery, suspense and action, this film is a must-see for all action-film lovers. The acting and storyline bring out the best of each of these elements.

Jim Powell (Stephen Thompson) visits his childhood house when his father dies to spend some time with his father's friends. When he arrives, however, he finds some strange objects throughout the house that lead him to believe his father's death might have been more than a heart attack. He digs deeper and deeper, despite receiving many warnings to stop the pursuit, eventually realizing there's no way to back out. And now he's in just as much danger as his father was.

Legend of Oro Arrowhead has an excellent plot. The storyline is filled with unexpected twists and turns, with the suspense keeping you on the edge of your seat. Even friends and family that seem like allies are suspect, because the enemy has eyes everywhere. With every break in suspense, friendships and romance are developed even further. Stephen Thompson as Jim and Vanessa Ore as Gola pull this off exceptionally well. They're awkwardly in love at the same time they're dealing with perilous missions to save themselves and others. In addition, the actors who play the antagonists stand out. Robbie Dernehl as Sable Fade, the cruel, rich woman who will do anything to get her hands on the fabled, powerful arrowhead, excels in her role. Her air of superiority and impatience perfectly combines with her truly evil inner self. While Jim and Gola journey through the woods to find the arrowhead, there are stunning birds-eye views of the forest: A beautiful clearing, a magnificent waterfall and hundreds of towering trees are just a few of the mind-blowingly gorgeous landscape shots.

The message of Legend of Oro Arrowhead is first and foremost to listen to people you trust. Many family friends warn Jim to mind his business and stay out of the forest, but Jim doesn't listen--this end up endangering not only him, but also anyone related to him. The film also expresses ideas of friendship, wisdom and bravery. There is a lot of gun violence, and there are some extremely intense scenes.

I give Legend of Oro Arrowhead 4.5 out of 5 stars, and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Legend of Oro Arrowhead will be available on all major streaming and cable platforms on June 7, 2022.

By Kyla C, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Legend of Oro Arrowhead is an intense attention-grabbing film. It's action-packed and filled with suspense. Plus, it's historically informative.

The storyline starts off as an innocent story about Jim (Stephan Thompson) looking back on the life of his father, who recently passed away. However, as Jim starts to question the cause of his dad's death, he realizes that there's a lot more to him than Jim thought. While trying to discover more about his mysterious father, Jim uncovers a whole other side of his dad's life, and soon finds himself getting roped up into a mess. In this new journey that Jim has entered, he discovers the value of a historic Native American arrowhead, and learns the true meaning of respecting others.

I really enjoyed this film's storyline, which was intriguing and attention grabbing. All of the running through the woods and fast car escapes are extremely suspenseful and captivating. Furthermore, the structure of the film is really terrific. The way that they incorporate action packed scenes, while still having an intense murder mystery aspect, is really cool. Another thing that stands out to me is the way that Native American history is incorporated into the storyline. The movie really gives insight into the indigenous culture, and why some things are so important. This is informative to me because, although this may be a fictional story, the history taught in the film is based on real facts. Lastly, all the sets and locations are top-notch. Every time the characters are in the forest or woods it feels very realistic, and I feel as if I'm actually there with them. Plus, the use of lighting and sound is great, giving it a feeling of being there.

The message of Legend of Arrowhead is to always respect the lives of others, no matter the cost. This film does have some violent scenes, including the use of guns, knives and harsh weapons.

I give Legend of Arrowhead 3.5 out of 5 stars, and recommend it to ages 11 to 18, plus adults. It is available now on streaming networks and DVD.

By Mikella G., KIDS FIRST!, Film Critic, age 16

Legend of Oro Arrowhead is a unique film, filled with surprises, mysteries and lots of suspense. The film is great to watch if you are a fan of crime stories and family drama.

Legend of Oro Arrowhead digs deep into the struggles and grief of Jim Powell (Stephen Thompson), a man who lost his father to a "heart condition" but people around town have been acting weird about his death and Jim is trying to figure out what the truth is behind his father's death. During his journey he happens to find relics such as arrowheads and a map that leads to some sort of gold while using his sister Jackie Powell's (Amber Lynn Kennison) help. Even as he is still searching for answers and solutions to all his problems, many people keep trying to get in the way of his discovering the truth.

I am absolutely shocked by how this film turned out. As far as the storyline goes, it would be frustrating to keep finding out secrets and making sure that you stay safe all while you were trying to unravel the truth about a loved one. Jim goes out on an adventure in his dad's footsteps and citizens of the town are not very supportive of his decision. The settings are packed full of natural as well as small town scenes. The outdoor settings are beautiful and give depth to the plot. My favorite part is the middle of the movie when Jim decides to go out and explore things his dad was involved with before he passed, because the suspense builds with this part. I like how different this movie is. The only thing I had a problem with is that it is repetitive at times, but it has a decent story. The ending is unexpected and surprising, but it pulls everything together in a way that makes everything make sense.

The message of Legend of Oro Arrowhead is that not everything you see is the truth. There is no inappropriate language or actions used in this movie.

I give Legend of Oro Arrowhead 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. It releases on digital and DVD June 7, 2022.

By SaniyaRain F., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BRIAN AND CHARLES
BRIAN AND CHARLES - FOCUS FEATURES
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10-18
Description - Brian And Charles follows Brian, a lonely inventor in rural Wales, who spends his days building quirky, unconventional contraptions that seldom work. Undeterred by his lack of success, Brian attempts his biggest project yet. Three days, a washing machine, and various spare parts later, he's invented Charles, an artificially intelligent robot who learns English from a dictionary and has an obsession with cabbages. What follows is a humorous and entirely heartwarming story about friendship, family, finding love, and letting go.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Brian and Charles has all the quintessential elements of a perfect friendship film. Jim Archer makes his directorial feature debut in this quirky British comedy in which an eclectic cast does a spectacular job demonstrating the very real ebbs and flows of true companionship. Despite some significantly low moments in their friendship, including an explosive argument, Brian and Charles remind us that true friendship never dies; it only strengthens through adversity.

Brian and Charles' friendship has an unconventional origin. Brian (David Earl) is an isolated inventor in Wales who specializes in weird inventions. Despite his passion, his interventions often flop. Driven by depression and loneliness, Brian builds a robot using a washing machine and spare parts lying around his home. Charles is clunky yet charming. He is obsessed with cabbage, uses the dictionary to learn English, and loves socializing, dancing, and adventures.

In this film, Brian, played by David Earl, has finally invented the cure for his loneliness. What he doesn't anticipate is that Charles, played by Chris Hayward, is much more of a free spirit than he is. Despite their dance parties, pillow fights, and mutual love for cabbage, Charles deeply desires to see the world, while Charles is content with a quaint and straightforward life in Wales. One of my favorite parts of the film was watching Charles dance in a hula skirt and beg to go to Honolulu. Their competing wishes ultimately become the source of tension in their friendship. While the film centers on Brian and Charles, Louise Brealey's performance as Hazel, Brian's love interest, is worth mentioning. Their awkward yet sweet interactions between her and Brian give the film comedic relief.

Brian and Charles reminds us that sometimes "friend" is actually another word for family, and sometimes loving someone means letting them go. Brian and Charles' friendship survived heated disagreements, conflicting visions, and even a kidnapping. But, ultimately, they proved that the love would never fade no matter the distance between them.

I give Brian and Charles 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to18, plus adults. Brian and Charles releases in theaters June 17, 2022.

By Hanadie K., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
ELVIS
ELVIS - WARNER BROS. PICTURES
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Description - A thoroughly cinematic drama, Elvis's (Butler) story is seen through the prism of his complicated relationship with his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker (Hanks). As told by Parker, the film delves into the complex dynamic between the two spanning over 20 years, from Presley's rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and loss of innocence in America. Central to that journey is one of the significant and influential people in Elvis's life, Priscilla Presley (Olivia DeJonge).
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - What an incredible biopic Baz Luhrmann has given us. All inspiring and tragic! Tom Hanks's performance as the villainous Colonel Parker is mind-blowing - sensitive and conniving all at the same time. Hats off to the makeup crew for converting our favorite good guy into the bloated persona of Colonel Parker. Austin Butler's portrayal of Elvis is nothing short of marvelous. I read how he emersed himself into this role for two years, to truly take on Elvis' personality and transformations as accurately as possible. And, he does it! When he is on-screen, you can't take your eyes off of him. When he sings, it is as if Elvis has been reincarnated. Olivia DeJonge's portrayal of Priscilla Presley shines as well. The first two hours of this two hour, thirty seven minute film are a romp (for the most part). Then, Elvis' demise and death follow and, even though I knew the outcome, tears flowed down my face seeing his tragic end on the big screen. I told my sister, "if you want to leave happy, leave after the first two hours." That was partly in jest, and partly in truth, because watching this marvel of a man, whose music still outsells any other single artist, fall apart, is truly a tragedy in the greatest sense. By Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Elvis is a movie everyone needs to see! One of the greatest biopics is finally here and it does not disappoint. Fans of all generations will love this film for years to come.

Elvis is told from the point of view of Colonel Parker (Tom Hanks) who used to be Elvis's manager. He tells the story of how he met Elvis (Austin Butler) and how the singer took the world by storm. The film covers the years of Elvis's life as a young adult until his passing.

This is an incredible and exciting film. From the opening scene until the credits roll, the movie is a roller coaster of emotions. Austin's performance as the king of Rock n Roll is revolutionary. It's impossible to take your eyes off of him. He truly becomes Elvis with his mannerisms and dancing. Austin's performance is Oscar-worthy, just like the rest of the film. The movie humanizes Elvis, where audiences see him as more than just a performer. It's heartbreaking to see how this larger-than-life legend never lived the life he wanted. The film unites both Elvis fans and non-enthusiasts by showing this icon in a never-before-seen profile. Following Elvis throughout his life and witnessing his love of music made me feel as if he's been a friend of mine for years. Producer/Director/Writer, Baz Lurhmann delivers an incredible film and story here. It is completely engaging, has a perfect mix of modern music and Elvis classics, along with swapping between Elvis and the Colonel's points of view. Archival elements such as newspaper headlines and comic book art are put to good use and the film ends with a video recording of Elvis's last concert. The costumes are spectacular. The scene of Elvis's Las Vegas residency wearing his iconic white suit is beautiful since it looks like the viewers are watching a live performance. This is one movie that you should watch in theaters to capture its greatness. The music blaring; Austin's acting; and the cinematography should be experienced on the big screen.

Elvis offers several themes, but the most important one is to live the life you want to. Elvis's mother warned him of living a life to please others and that he would eventually lose himself, which is exactly what happened. Elvis never lived his life for himself and, in the end, it consumed him.

I give Elvis 5 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18 plus adults. It premieres in theaters June 24, 2022.

By Heather S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16

A superstar, a revolution, and a change in not only music, but in the world. We all know Elvis Presley from his many hit songs, but who was the man behind the music? Where did he come from? Elvis, starring Austin Butler, will keep you mesmerized as you watch his life unfold, as relationships build and fall apart, and this legend gives the world the music still loved by generations, Elvis exceeded any expectations I had for this rock biopic.

Elvis shares the touching and real story of the King of Rock and Roll from the perspective of his manipulative manager, Colonel Tom Parker (Tom Hanks.) The story starts by revealing how the black musicians that surrounded him in his childhood homes of Mississippi and Memphis inspired him and shaped his sound. When locals start going crazy for this new talent, Parker, in need of a fresh act, goes to hear Elvis sing live at a local radio event. Seeing the potential (musical and financial), Parker begins a complex, self-serving relationship with Elvis, which drives the story forward.

The storyline of this movie is what ultimately sets it apart--instead of following a basic and predictable film plotline, Elvis shows the nonlinear, very human ups and downs of Elvis Presley's career. On the screen, I saw the true story of a man's life. Unlike other films that follow the lives of stars (Bohemian Rhapsody, Rocketman) Elvis centers around the relationships, and not just between Elvis and the Colonel. We get a close view of his relationships with his family and, more importantly, his fans. The love he received from the enormous crowds was his biggest motivator and director, Baz Luhrmann lets us see it. The lighting, the costumes, the pure joy on every actor's face, and the energy radiating off of the screen was almost tangible.

This film's message is best summed up in a line by B.B. King (Kelvin Harrison Jr.): "If you don't do the business, the business will do you." In other words, if you do not take control over your own life, other things and people will--a lesson Elvis might have learned if he had lived long enough.

I give Elvis 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 12 to 18, plus adults. You can see Elvis in theaters June 24, 2022.

By Allison B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 15
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LIGHTYEAR
LIGHTYEAR - WALT DISNEY ANIMATED STUDIOS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10 - 18
Description - Legendary space ranger Buzz Lightyear embarks on an intergalactic adventure alongside ambitious recruits Izzy, Mo, Darby, and his robot companion, Sox. As this motley crew tackles their toughest mission yet, they must learn to work together as a team to escape the evil Zurg and his dutiful robot army that are never far behind.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - It's time to go infinity and beyond with your favorite space ranger - Buzz Lightyear! Pixar and Disney bring Buzz like we've never seen him in his own animated film, Lightyear. It's full of epic Buzz backstories, leg-snatching aliens, hilarious scenes and endless space adventures.

Lightyear follows Space Ranger Buzz Lightyear (Chris Evans) as he travels to another planet. He spends years trying to return home but clashes with robots led by Zurg (James Brolin) who is trying to steal his fuel. After he attempts to make it off the planet he realizes every time he leaves it fast forwards time. After many failed attempts he ends up 100 years into the future along with a new companion robot cat named SOX (Peter Sohn). He meets a crew of people who end up trying to help him on his mission. Can Buzz make it off this planet?

The main character, Buzz Lightyear, is from the iconic Toy Story franchise. Lightyear is joined by fellow space ranger Alisha Hawthrone (Uzo Aduba) and, eventually, her granddaughter, Izzy Hawthrone (KeKe Palmer) and, of course, Sox (Peter Sohn) the robot cat. Fans of the Toy Story films will love learning more about Buzz's missions mentioned throughout the Toy Story films, such as his relationship and battles with Zurg. My favorite character in this film is Sox, because he is funny without even trying and his human-like characteristics are even funnier. There is a scene where Buzz is having a tough time clearing his mind and going to sleep. Sox demonstrates different options to help him sleep and eventually starts making "white noises" that sound more like hissing. It is hilarious.

The biggest message throughout Lightyear is that failure happens, and we must never give up on our goals. You never know when something will actually work out for you unless you keep trying. Lightyear also gives a great lesson about working together and not being afraid to ask for help when you need it most. You can accomplish more with a team, than by yourself.

I give Lightyear 4 out 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 8 to 18. Of course, adults will love it too. Toy Story fans will love getting to know Buzz's story in this film. Lightyear travels into theaters June 17, 2022.

By Tiana S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 5-14 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
SUPER PUPZ
SUPER PUPZ - NETFLIX
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 5-12
Description - Four superpowered pups work as a pack to help their new kid pals - and a furry alien friend - in a cute and cuddly cosmic adventure.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Super PupZ is a lighthearted, fun series. It's family friendly, and gives you a laugh here and there. Overall it's an enjoyable show that is nice to relax to.

The show highlights four main dogs who each have extreme, unique abilities. They come from a company that wants to test on them, but luckily they are able to escape. However, the 5th smallest puppy is still stuck there. With the help of their newfound owners the four "pupz" must help the trapped puppy escape, and hopefully end the wrong-doings of these people in the meantime.

The quality of the content in this series really stands out to me. Each episode grabs my attention, and goes by pretty quickly. Another thing I enjoy about this show is its strong concept which is interesting. It is also something I have never seen done before, as far as the structure. In addition, the visuals are top-notch. The picture quality is very clear, and feels very fresh, and the storyline is engaging. Lastly, even though the series is very kid friendly, it's still very entertaining for all ages. This is important because it exposes young minds to good entertainment. Plus, it creates a strong family dynamic because parents are more likely to want to watch TV with their kids when it's about something that could also interest them.

The message of Super PupZ is that doing the right thing will always win in the end.

I give Super PupZ 3.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to ages 5 to 12. You can watch Super Pupz now on Netflix.

By Mikella G. , KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
JURASSIC WORLD DOMINION
JURASSIC WORLD DOMINION - UNIVERSAL STUDIOS - THEATRICAL DIVISION
Series: FEATURE, AGES 10 - 18
Description - This summer, experience the epic conclusion to the Jurassic era as two generations unite for the first time. Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard are joined by Oscar�-winner Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum and Sam Neill in Jurassic World Dominion, a bold, timely and breathtaking new adventure that spans the globe. From Jurassic World architect and director Colin Trevorrow, Dominion takes place four years after Isla Nublar has been destroyed. Dinosaurs now live--and hunt--alongside humans all over the world. This fragile balance will reshape the future and determine, once and for all, whether human beings are to remain the apex predators on a planet they now share with history's most fearsome creatures.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Jurassic World Dominion is an action-packed film filled with great comedy and strong actor performances. I also liked how they brought characters from Jurassic Park and World together into one movie. In this version, humans and all animals learn to adapt to sharing the planet with all species of dinosaurs.

Continuing from the Jurassic Park, and now World series, this movie is about how Dr. Henry Wu (BD Wong) makes a huge mistake when he and Lewis Dodgson (Campbell Scott) of Biosyn, try to engineer locust bugs designed to eat all the wheat crops, except for Biosyn crops, so they can control the food source. The problem is these giant bugs multiply out of control and threaten to eat all the human's source of food. You might remember Dodgson from the first Jurassic Park movie, where he was trying to buy dinosaur embryos from an Ingen programmer named Dennis Nedry. The famous Barbasol can with a secret embryo compartment makes a cameo in this film as well. Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern) and Alan Grant (Sam Neill) work together again to stop this madness by exposing their plan. While this is happening, Maisie Lockwood (Isabella Sermon) is being hunted down to be studied at the same lab.

The graphics are exciting and just as good as the CGI. My favorite part is when Dr. Ian Malcom (Jeff Goldblum) throws a stick on fire at the T-rex to stop it from eating him. The scene is so realistic and is even better when he starts blowing out fire from his mouth! In comparison with the previous Jurassic Park movies, this film has extraordinary effects. The music is appealing for each scene and the story line is engaging, even though it was a bit predictable. The actors performed their characters very well.

The moral of Jurassic World Dominion is to respect nature and to adapt to changes--we see that message where InGen and Biosyn took dinosaurs for granted when using them to experiment and to try to make money.

I give Jurassic World Dominion 5 out of 5 stars for the finale of this great series of movies. I recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Jurassic World Dominion is available in all theatres starting on June 10, 2022.

Ethan P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

Bigger and scarier dinosaurs, heart-pounding sound effects, and plot twists mixed with plenty of adventures are just what you can expect from Jurassic World Dominion! From the beginning to the end of the movie, there are tons of action-packed scenes to keep you literally jumping for more. Fans of the Jurassic Park franchise will not be disappointed.

Jurassic World Dominion centers around two different storylines. On one hand, Maisie Lockwood (Isabella Sermon), a teenager, who happens to be a clone of her biological mother, is kidnapped and taken to a company called Biosyn to become a science experiment so scientists can learn how her biological mother created her. On the other hand, her parents, Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) and Owen Grady (Chris Pratt), set out on an adventure to rescue her. Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern) is suspicious of the works of Biosyn and its animal experiments, as well as its attempt to take over the food chain. She brings in Alan Grant (Sam Neill) to help her stop Biosyn from taking over. The two storylines eventually combine for one suspenseful adventure that happens to take place all while dinosaurs are threatening the characters' existence.

The main characters in this film are Maisie, Claire, Owen, Alan, Ellie, and Dr. Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum). There are references and character appearances from other movies in the Jurassic Park franchise. I enjoyed seeing how characters from different parts of the film join together to save Maisie and end up trying to save each other and become a family while working together. There are some funny scenes throughout the film, and I loved seeing the characters communicating with the dinosaurs and even making them promises. The movie takes you on an emotional rollercoaster as you root for the good guys to not only survive but to win.

This film touches on family and whether or not dinosaurs and humans can co-exist. You'll have to watch the movie to find out. While I highly enjoyed Jurassic World Dominion, this film may not be suitable for people who have certain fears/anxieties or even suffer from PTSD. Parents should look out for scenes with extreme violence, gory deaths, and loads of jump scares.

I give Jurassic World Dominion 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for kids ages 12 to 18, plus adults. This film roars into theaters on June 10, 2022.

The world of Jurassic Park roars back to life with Jurassic World Dominion, a long, spectacle-driven, dino-filled movie -- at times messy and confusing and good reminder of how this film doesn't quite live up to Jurassic films of the past.

After the conclusion of the last movie, dinosaurs are now roaming the globe, largely un-checked and causing mayhem as humans and dinos learn they make bad companions. Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) live a humble existence, each adapting to this ecological shockwave in their own way. They're raising a young girl, who wants more freedom from her protective family unit. She has to live in hiding because her genes may or may not be the key to figuring out how this dinosaur fiasco could help cure diseases and be the key to saving lives. She's taken and suddenly, Owen and Claire find themselves heading out into this uncertain world of humans and dinosaurs in search of her whereabouts. They'll need help from a paleontologist named Alan Grant (Sam Neill), a scientist named Ellie Satler (Laura Dern) and a mathematician named Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum), who we haven't seen together since the first Jurassic Park back in 1993.

With a set-up as game-changing as the one set up by the end of the last Jurassic World movie--and the return of the original cast--the pieces seemed to be in place for this to be a home run. Unfortunately, the return of Goldblum, Neill and Dern feels dropped into the plot machinations of the Jurassic World series to attempt to fittingly close out this 6-movie journey. Yet nothing happens to them that changes their characters in any substantial way and while it's great to have them back, their return lacks purpose within the story of Jurassic World Dominion.

The performances of the old favorites, Laura Dern, Sam Neill and Jeff Goldblum worked better for me than those of the newbies Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard. There's a tender encounter between Dern and a baby dinosaur that was really affecting--every emotion on her face feels pure and honest. She's just as compelling in that moment as she is letting out a scream as locusts swarm around her. Sam Neill's gruffness and grumbly demeanor still makes him a nice foil to Ian Malcom, and Jeff Goldblum feels right at home as Ian. He walks into this movie like a rock star, holding the attention of an auditorium full of enthralled listeners as he lectures in a black leather jacket. I'll admit, it's plenty of fun to see the original trio interact with the new Jurassic crew, comparing notes on their adventures and butting heads, but be warned, they don't run into each other until almost two hours in.

The lesson of Jurassic World Dominion is elusive. At first, it seeks the answer to whether or not we can handle the consequences of what we do to the natural world. However, then, there's a thread about parenthood that never gets fully developed. Indicative of Jurassic World Dominion's greatest flaw, the ultimate point of this movie never explicitly reveals itself. There is some mild violence, as well as some frightening sequences and frequent terror.

I give Jurassic World Dominion 2 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults. Jurassic World Dominion stomps into theaters June 10, 2022.

By Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 16
Juror Recommended Age: 10-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
MY LITTLE PONY: MAKE YOUR MARK
MY LITTLE PONY: MAKE YOUR MARK - NETFLIX
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 4-8
Description - Welcome back to Equestria, where pony magic is everywhere. With friends Zipp, Sunny, Izzy, Pipp and Hitch leading the way, adventure is sure to follow! The series will center on the adventures of Sunny Starscout and her friends after the events depicted in the film. Created with a dazzling 3D CG animation style evocative of the recent film, the special and series will follow the MANE 5 on a journey of self-discovery told through action-packed, hilarious, and heartfelt stories.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - My Little Pony: Make Your Mark is an entertaining, full-length episode that will have audiences counting the days until the release of the upcoming series. This show doesn't really require you to watch the My Little Pony movie beforehand, and that is a good thing. You'll be entertained watching this show either way.

This show focuses on the new characters that were first presented in the previous movie, My Little Pony: A New Generation. In Maritime Bay, it's now normal for Earth Ponies, Unicorns, and Pegasi to interact with each other and to be friends. But lately things have been tense between some of the ponies, and their friendship has been off. Zipp Storm (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan) has noticed this tension has caused the unity crystal's power to fade. Now Zipp and her friends have to figure out a way to stop it before it gets out of hand.

In My Little Pony: Mark Your Mark I like that the five ponies' friendship is so strong it's the only thing needed to keep the power of the crystal from fading. They don't do it individually--they do it together. My favorite characters in this show are Sunny (Jenna Warren) and Izzy (Ana Sani). I like Sunny and Izzy because they both have positive attitudes no matter the situation, and they are nice, genuine ponies. I think that was one of the key factors in saving Maritime Bay. I also like Zipp because she is funny and confident. Another thing I like about this show is that it includes everyone's differences, which sends the message that even if you are different, you can still be friends and work together.

The message of My Little Pony: Mark Your Mark is that you have to do what is right and good for you and not what's good for other people. Throughout the show, this is shown through Zipp's character. She doesn't know whether she wants to go back home and become a princess, or stay in Maritime Bay with her friends. In the end, she does what is right for her. My Little Pony: Mark Your Mark is family friendly and has a really good message that everyone, no matter who they are, will take away I give My Little Pony: Make Your Mark 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 8. You can watch this show on Netflix starting May 26, 2022. Be sure to check it out!

Giana N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 11
Juror Recommended Age: 4-8 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
LEGEND OF THE ORO ARROWHEAD
LEGEND OF THE ORO ARROWHEAD - VISION FILMS
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Description - Ancient folklore speaks of a shaman who was given a golden arrowhead with the magical gift of truth and vitality. Deemed too dangerous by the tribe elders, it was hidden away for all time. Now, a power - hungry small-town mayor is bent on unearthing the arrowhead at all costs and a Ranger and a daughter of the Cherokee tribe are all that stand in her way.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Get ready for the adventure of your life when you experience Legend of Oro Arrowhead! A balance of mystery, suspense and action, this film is a must-see for all action-film lovers. The acting and storyline bring out the best of each of these elements.

Jim Powell (Stephen Thompson) visits his childhood house when his father dies to spend some time with his father's friends. When he arrives, however, he finds some strange objects throughout the house that lead him to believe his father's death might have been more than a heart attack. He digs deeper and deeper, despite receiving many warnings to stop the pursuit, eventually realizing there's no way to back out. And now he's in just as much danger as his father was.

Legend of Oro Arrowhead has an excellent plot. The storyline is filled with unexpected twists and turns, with the suspense keeping you on the edge of your seat. Even friends and family that seem like allies are suspect, because the enemy has eyes everywhere. With every break in suspense, friendships and romance are developed even further. Stephen Thompson as Jim and Vanessa Ore as Gola pull this off exceptionally well. They're awkwardly in love at the same time they're dealing with perilous missions to save themselves and others. In addition, the actors who play the antagonists stand out. Robbie Dernehl as Sable Fade, the cruel, rich woman who will do anything to get her hands on the fabled, powerful arrowhead, excels in her role. Her air of superiority and impatience perfectly combines with her truly evil inner self. While Jim and Gola journey through the woods to find the arrowhead, there are stunning birds-eye views of the forest: A beautiful clearing, a magnificent waterfall and hundreds of towering trees are just a few of the mind-blowingly gorgeous landscape shots.

The message of Legend of Oro Arrowhead is first and foremost to listen to people you trust. Many family friends warn Jim to mind his business and stay out of the forest, but Jim doesn't listen--this end up endangering not only him, but also anyone related to him. The film also expresses ideas of friendship, wisdom and bravery. There is a lot of gun violence, and there are some extremely intense scenes.

I give Legend of Oro Arrowhead 4.5 out of 5 stars, and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Legend of Oro Arrowhead will be available on all major streaming and cable platforms on June 7, 2022.

By Kyla C, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
FAIRYTALE FUN FORCE
FAIRYTALE FUN FORCE - INTERNATIONAL MEDIA NETWORK
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 5-12
Description - Oh no! The mischievous Jabberwock has stolen the dreams of all the inhabitants of the galaxy! Enter Captain Snow White and the crew of the Fairytale Fun Force, the superpowered team of fairytale heroes: King Arthur, Little Red Riding Hood, Pinocchio, and Robin Hood! The brave team sets off on a galactic adventure to find out what happened to everybody's dreams! Will Doodley Digs point them to virtual reality? Or will the Cheshire Cat lead them down into the dark Magic Forest? Maybe Dorothy has seen them in the wonderful land of Oz? Join the adventure and find out in Fairytale Fun Force!
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - I really enjoyed Fairytale Fun Force with its upbeat storyline and well developed characters. It is a fun spoof on many popular children's stories and movies that, when combined, create a unique story.

Fairytale Fun Force follows five characters from popular children's fairytales - Snow White, King Arthur, Pinocchio, Robin Hood and Little Red Riding Hood - who are out to save the world from a thief that is stealing dreams.

The film's structure is well developed and easy to follow. The setting takes place on a spaceship with the characters visiting various fictitious planets that are based on fairytales and popular children's books. The storyline flows well, draws the viewer into the film and is unpredictable. The characters will be familiar to most children as they are from well-known fairytales that familiar to most audiences. It is easy to recognize the origin of the characters by both their costumes and their language. They are cute and attractive. For the most part, the voices are in sync with the character's mouths, but at times they are out of sync. The vocabulary is a mixture of familiar words and phrases commonly used by children along with new words they can easily learn. Most are simple enough for young children to understand, while some will challenge children to expand their vocabulary. The images are colorful and bold, which will keep their attention.

The message of the film emphasizes how everyone working together solves problems. It teaches the importance of teamwork, how to work with difficult people and the value of perseverance.

I give Fairytale Fun Force 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5-12. It releases on digital platforms, AVOD and DVD June 7, 2022.

By Pamela L., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Fairytale Fun Force is a magical film so full of the cutest things that I couldn't stop looking at the screen.

The film tells the story of five fairytale friends: Snow White, Pinocchio, Robin Hood, Little Red Riding Hood and King Arthur. They all have a discussion about something they heard that is very strange, and, with that, they must to go to the whole galaxy to check the situation.

I like the film because it reminds me of my childhood, and everything is so colorful! I love the characters because, besides being the cutest, they bring other children's stories with them. My favorite part is when they are going on one of their adventures, and King Arthur is looking at the beautiful landscape. I love this because when he's looking at this, his gaze is fixed, and the enchantment by what he sees is revealed. Something that I also really like is Snow White's way of handling things--she's very strong in her actions, and she doesn't lose the focus in every situation. The CGI is perfect! Very well made. The animation in the background is excellent. The costumes of the characters suit the genre of the film, and it says much about their personality. The special effects are good, and it has magic! The scene transitions are well edited, too. I congratulate the team for this beautiful animation.

The message of Fairytale Fun Force is that we do not always have the right answer at first, and that we always have someone to count on!

I give Fairytale Fun Force 5 out of 5 stars, and I recommend this for ages 5-12, plus adults. It releases on digital platforms, AVOD and DVD June 7, 2022.

By Anna Clara B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

Hilarious and enchanting, Fairytale Fun Force is a fun watch for the entire family.

Familiar storybook characters we all love go on a quest to explore a potential problem that could threaten the universe. Will Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, Robin Hood, Pinocchio and King Arthur save the day?

This film is perfect for a family movie night, with a perfect mix of action, comedy and adventure. Viewers and fans of parodies and remakes such as the show Once Upon a Time will obsess over this movie. While the characters are familiar and recognizable in appearance I love how the writers molded them with new personalities and quirks. It is like rediscovering these childhood classic favorites all over again. My favorite character in this film is Snow White. While I might be biased since she is one of my favorite Disney Princesses she brings so much to the plot of this film. Speaking of the plot, it is really exhilarating and kept me on my toes. The comedy and punch-lines landed every-time, which is greatly appreciated.

The message of Fairytale Fun Force is just that - have fun as you journey through the unpredictability of life. See the obstacles as opportunities to learn, grow, make new friends and maybe even save the Galaxy.

I give Fairytale Fun Force 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. It releases on digital platforms, AVOD and DVD June 7, 2022. You don't want to miss it.

By Ashleigh Clyde, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18

Fairytale Fun Force is a cute and colorful cartoon made to entertain young children. Using our favorite fairytale characters and fairytale places, Fairytale Fun Force is an enjoyable animated film.

When Captain Snow White realizes that her dreams, and her crew's dreams, have disappeared, she sets off into space to find out if this is happening everywhere. She learns that a strange monster is stealing their dreams. From traveling to the Cheshire Cat in Wonderland to Dorothy in the Great land of Oz, will they find this monster? And will anyone stop them?

Written and directed by Kelly Little and produced by Albert Burrows, Fairytale Fun Force includes character voices shared among a few people. The main cast includes Kesley Painter, Simon Hill, John Thompson and many more-- I love seeing all the different characters together. The animation directed by Emanuel Barros is excellent. The colors and bright lights in this film really draw our attention.

Fairytale Fun Force teaches how when you work together, you will be victorious.

I give Fairytale Fun Force 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. It releases on digital platforms, AVOD and DVD June 7, 2022.


Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BOSS BABY, THE: BACK IN THE CRIB
BOSS BABY, THE: BACK IN THE CRIB - NETFLIX
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 6-12
Description - Theodore Templeton is framed for embezzlement and forced to revert back to his old Boss Baby self and crash with his brother Tim and his two nieces, brainy big kid Tabitha and fellow Baby Corp employee Tina. Together, Boss Baby and Tina co-lead a new Field Team fighting to increase Baby Love while keeping a new group of arch-nemeses - The Uncuddleables - from destroying Baby Corp itself. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Katherine S. comments, "Boss Baby: Back in the Crib is a great show for the whole family. This new animated series is the next installment in the Boss Baby franchise and is super entertaining for kids while still staying relatable to parents."
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Boss Baby: Back in the Crib is a great show for the whole family. This new animated series is the next installment in the Boss Baby franchise and is super entertaining for kids while still staying relatable to parents.

When Theodore Templeton (JP Karliak) gets framed for embezzlement by his employees, he is forced to turn into his baby self and hide with his brother, Timothy (Max Miittelman) to escape from the FBI. While staying at his brother's house, he rejoins Baby Corp. and goes on many secret missions and exciting adventures with former characters and a whole new crew.

Since this show is based on The Boss Baby, Boss Baby: Back in Business, and Boss Baby 2: Family Business, I would recommend watching them in advance as the series references characters and storylines from these movies and show, but it is not necessary. And even though there are several different storylines in the Boss Baby franchise, this series still stays fresh and unique. Although it's not for my age range, it's is the perfect show for young children and their parents to enjoy. The strongest performances of the show come from JP Karliak, Mary Faber and Ariana Greenblatt. JP Karliak as Boss Baby is so funny and excellently mimics Alec Baldwin, who voiced Boss Baby originally. Mary Faber voices Tina, and she brings such a happy and sweet mood to the scenes she is in. Ariana Greenblatt in the role of Tabitha has the perfect proportions of clever, smart and caring that a big sister would have. My favorite character is NannyCam No Filter CEO Baby, voiced by Nicole Byer because she is so hilarious and brings a wonderful personality to the long line of Baby Corp CEOs.

The message of Boss Baby: Back in the Crib to fight for what you believe is right. This show also has great themes of teamwork and friendship, and how everyone deserves love.

I give Boss Baby: Back in the Crib 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 11, plus adults. It comes out on Netflix May 19, 2022.

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
BRIE'S BAKE OFF CHALLENGE
BRIE'S BAKE OFF CHALLENGE - HBO MAX
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 8-14
Description - Brie Hayes is an aspiring baker who wishes to win her school's Spring Bake Off Challenge. Troubles ensue when Brie's confidence reaches an ultimate low and her "arch nemesis", Vanessa, does everything she can to slim Brie's chances of winning. Brie's family and her best friend Millie must help her gain perspective and practice to win. Stakes are high as these pre-teens compete for the grand prize of $5,000 and for four Cosmo Land tickets. This is the ultimate baking movie for children and adults who love watching cooking and baking shows.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - First things first, if you are a fan of baking competition shows, you'll want to stop what you're doing and tune into this brilliant and fun film. Brie's Bake Off Challenge delivers all the adorableness and laughter of a teen dramedy while speaking directly to my food-loving spirit. If you appreciate a cute, teeny-bop movie, you're in for a sweet treat!

Brie Hayes (Devyn Mitchell) is an aspiring baker who wants nothing more than to win her school's annual Spring Bake Off Challenge. The path to victory becomes harder for Brie to see as her view is blocked by self-doubt, issues with her adversary, and tension with her best friend. With a $5,000 grand prize and four Cosmo Land tickets at stake, Brie is more determined than ever to be the champion.

Devyn Mitchell's performance pulls viewers in emotionally. Her acting range is evident in multiple scenes. First, you see her anger when she scolds her little brother Peter (Isiah Givens) for destroying her chocolate cake. Next, you see her discontentment and frustration when she goes toe to toe with her arch-nemesis and bully Vanessa Weiler. Then she shows you her creative and intelligent side when strategizing how to win with her best friend BFFL Millie (Mallory Vertman). This film keeps the competitive energy of baking shows while making us feel like we were walking the halls of middle school. My favorite part of the film was when Brie's Mother, Violet (Jennifer Richards), decides to put Brie and her best friend through intensive baking training.

Brie's Bake Off Challenge reminds tweens that even our worst days are temporary and demonstrates the importance of resilience and determination. There are a series of unfortunate events, and she easily could have used those dilemmas as a reason to quit. But instead, her perseverance has great reward. This sends an encouraging message to tweens facing similar situations.

I give Brie's Bake Off Challenge 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 14, plus adults. Brie's Bake Off Challenge is available now on HBO MAX. Check it out if you love cute teen movies, delectable baked goods, and movies with happy endings.


Juror Recommended Age: 8-14 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
NO VACANCY
NO VACANCY - KINGSTONE STUDIOS
Series: FEATURE, AGES 12 - 18
Description - A jaded reporter is demoted to a rural news station, where she befriends a recovering addict and gets involved with a church's plans to transform an old motel into housing for homeless families.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - No Vacancy is a good, heartwarming tale, which is especially crowd-pleasing as it is based on a true story.

Brandi Michaels (Sean Young) is a news reporter who lives with her mom and an alcoholic brother (Wade Hunt Williams). Being a very close-minded person, her view of the world changes when she meets a homeless drug addict (T.C. Stallings). She believes that people are only out for themselves, but when she discovers a church that is struggling to purchase a motel for homeless families, her thoughts change.

The storyline hooked me into the movie the most. I found it very exciting. Even though this isn't an action movie, No Vacancy is engaging. Sean Young, who plays main character Brandi, is an exceptional actress when it comes to emotion. She has subtle expressions which contribute to my overall favorable opinion of this film. Brandi is portrayed as a simple person whose view of the whole world changes after she sees how unselfish and altruistic people can be, and the character development portrays this evidently. The pace of the film is perfect, not being too fast or too slow.

The message I took away from this film is that selflessness does exist, and when someone is selfless it can mean a great deal more than people may think it will. There are scenes that show smoking, and there are depictions of alcohol and drug addiction. No Vacancy is suitable for more mature children as there is no severe profanity or intimacy.

I give No Vacancy 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for mature kids ages 12 to18, plus adults. No Vacancy releases in theaters on May 9, 2022.

Apurva S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
CHLOE AND THEO
CHLOE AND THEO - VISION FILMS
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 8-18
Description - Based on true events, a young woman living on the streets meets a wise Inuit elder who was sent to New York by his elders to provide a message of change to the world. The woman, who had been searching for something to believe in, becomes inspired and, with the help of a kind lawyer, the three of them present his story to the United Nations in hopes of creating a better future for us all.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - Chloe and Theo is a film about the effects of climate change and how they need to be stopped. The movie has a good message, but falls a bit flat, mainly due to some stereotyping and insensitive jokes, such as people calling Theo an Eskimo despite him telling them repeatedly that he is Inuit. I was disappointed about the representation of the Inuit people.

Chloe and Theo is based on true events about an Inuit man named Theo who comes to New York to warn people about climate change. While in the city Theo meets a homeless girl named Chloe who helps him on his quest. They are joined by a lawyer, and the three of them talk to the United Nations about the dangers of climate change.

Chloe and Theo has an interesting story a great message about spreading climate change awareness. However, the Inuit man, Theo is often the butt of jokes, which is unfortunate. The story flows well, although there are some parts where it drags and it takes a while to get the plot moving. I was disappointed that there wasn't more focus on Theo's story. The vocabulary is suitable for the audience. Visually, the movie looks quite good. The camera work is good and there are some animated aspects, such as when Theo talks about the Inuit tale of the sun kissing the earth that are terrific. The film provides some insight into Inuit culture, but it isn't explored that much, except for the tale of the sun kissing the earth. People may be inspired by this film to want to learn more about Inuit culture and hopefully about climate change.

The message of the film is about the devastating effects of climate change; it emphasizes the need for everyone to play their part in stopping it. There is some violence. For example, in one scene Chloe fights with UN employees and, although it's not graphic, they drag her on top of the table and restrain her. At another point, Chloe tries to jump off of a building, but is stopped by Tyler. At the end of the movie, Theo is stabbed and killed, and blood is shown on his body and on the knife.

I give Chloe and Theo 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Medha N. and Julie S., KIDS FIRST!
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - Chloe and Theo is a touching and thought-provoking story based on the life of a young homeless woman named Chloe whose world changes when she meets an Inuit with a message to help save the world. Theo, an Inuit, travels from the snow-covered Arctic to New York City in search of the Elders of the South. They both discover that although their worlds are very different, friendship and a common cause can bring people close together.

The film begins in the Arctic, a winter wonderland, where Theo (Theo Ikummaq, who is playing himself) and other Inuit are discussing the effects of the sun and global warming on their environment. They decide it's time for someone to deliver this message to Elders in the South to help save Earth. They choose Theo as the best candidate because he spent time in the South when he was young. He sets out on his mission and ends up in New York City in search of the Elders. Along the way, he meets Chloe (Dakota Johnson), a homeless girl who seems tough on the outside, but has a kind heart. She listens to his message and decides she wants to help him spread it. Together they face many obstacles and dangers, but they also make new friends, including a woman named Monica (Mira Sorvino), who are determined to assist Theo in his journey to deliver his message help save the environment.

My favorite scene is when Theo goes to a meeting with other green environmental companies who have the same goals as Theo. Theo decides to take the stairs and walk up to the top of the building rather than taking the elevator. Thankfully, Chloe and his other friends cover for him in the meeting while he walks up all those flights. The scene shows how far Theo is willing to go for his cause while adding a bit of humor. The costumes fit each character's situation and culture. Theo is seen in clothes he would wear in his village in the Arctic and his clothes change in the film due to the storyline. Chloe is seen with worn, dirty clothes and messy hair, which showcase what it's like to live on the streets. The contrast in settings helps the viewer to understand the characters' lives. The peaceful Arctic village, compared to the noisy city, shows how different Chloe and Theo's lives are. The place Chloe shares with her street friends is also a contrast to the apartment belonging Monica who helps them.

The messages in this film are to care for others and for the Earth's environment. People are all connected no matter how far apart they live. Protecting the Earth is vital for survival for everyone, so everyone should work together to make sure it is taken care of for the future. There is some mild violence that parents should be aware of.

I give Chloe and Theo 4 out of 5 stars. I recommend this for ages 12 to 17, plus adults. Chloe and Theo releases just in time for Earth Day, April 22, 2022 on Digital and DVD.

By Carlee S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 17

Chloe and Theo is a unique and inspiring film that shows how unlikely friendships can change the world! Caring and helping with the environment is very crucial and this film brilliantly portrays this message.

A homeless female, Chloe and an Inuit named Theo build a relationship after getting a life changing message in order to save the world. Despite being total opposites and having a difficult, yet hilarious adventure, both Chloe and Theo create an unbreakable bond in order to finish the mission successfully.

Chloe (Dakota Johnson) is my favorite character in this film. Dakota Johnson is an all-around, well-rounded actress and her acting brings so much to the complex character of Chloe. There is so much character development with Chloe; we see how she grows and matures as a person. Her character is someone that many people will relate to. The Inuit, Theo (Theo Ikummaq) essentially plays himself and captures his own cultural heritage with what seems like little to no acting. His portrayal Theo makes this film heartfelt and more personal for audiences. Chloe portrays a homeless woman and her clothing shows us exactly what her circumstances are. Theo's clothing, to the best of my knowledge, does justice to the Inuit culture by using traditional attire. The music and score, from start to finish, is incredible! Every funny scene, serious scene or even dialogue rich scene is enhanced with the background music. My favorite scenes of the film are those with educational aspects. While much of the film is based on fictional storylines, there are many cultural and environmental aspects that I learned by watching this film -- an experience you don't have often with movies.

The message of this film is to be open minded to different people and possibilities. If Chloe had rejected the opportunity to help Theo carry out the message to save the environment, then she would not have been able to be a hero or make a difference. Despite their differences, they looked past this and decided to see the bigger picture - a lesson I encourage all to learn from.

I give Chloe and Theo 5 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, plus adults. Chloe and Theo releases just in time for Earth Day, April 22, 2022 on Digital and DVD. Don't miss it!

By Ashleigh C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18
Juror Recommended Age: 8-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
FANTASTIC BEASTS: THE SECRETS OF DUMBLEDORE
FANTASTIC BEASTS: THE SECRETS OF DUMBLEDORE - WARNER BROS. PICTURES
Series: FEATURE FILM, AGES 12-18
Description - Professor Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) knows the powerful Dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald (Mads Mikkelsen) is moving to seize control of the wizarding world. Unable to stop him alone, he entrusts Magizoologist Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) to lead an intrepid team of wizards, witches and one brave Muggle baker on a dangerous mission, where they encounter old and new beasts and clash with Grindelwald's growing legion of followers. But with the stakes so high, how long can Dumbledore remain on the sidelines?
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - See youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - This fascinating film, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore finally gives us the long-awaited backstory of what is going on in Dumbledore's brilliant mind throughout the Harry Potter saga. The movie is heart-wrenching, and yet at moments it leaves you bent over with laughter. The actors are truly convincing, bringing their characters to life. Every Harry Potter fan will enjoy hearing the subtle references to the books as they watch the infamous Grindelwald at the height of his power.

The storyline follows Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) and his comrades as they act on instructions given by Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) to find and defeat the dark wizard, Gellert Grindelwald (Mads Mikkelsen). This unlikely team faces major challenges and setbacks as they try to stop Grindelwald from winning the election for Minister of Magic. Newt uses his quick mind to find him, with help from his fantastic beasts, his friends' brilliant minds and his brother's spell work. Dumbledore has a plan, although he is just as secretive as all Harry Potter fans will surely remember. Will a small group of wizards (and a muggle) be able to defeat the greatest dark wizard of the time?

Jude Law portrays Dumbledore almost perfectly, just as people have always imagined his younger self to be. Dumbledore's secrecy, love and trustworthiness come across effortlessly in Jude Law's face. The protagonist, Newt Scamander, is likable and a spark of joy in these dark times. The computer generated fantastical beasts are extremely realistic and adorable, and the visual effects during fight scenes are powerful. My favorite part of this movie is the bittersweet ending. Watching the characters finally enjoy their lives, far away from evil, brought tears to my eyes.

The message of this film is that strength comes in numbers. One person may be powerful, but when people come together using their unique strengths, they can triumph. This is a beautiful message to all those who feel helpless, reminding them that they can always turn to people they trust. There are not many age restrictions in this movie, but I think it will be more interesting to slightly older audiences. The film starts slow and there are subtle clues that the viewer needs to pay attention to in order to completely understand the storyline. Because of this, this movie would be most appealing to people over the age of eleven.

I give Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 11 to 18, plus adults. It releases in theaters on Friday, April 15, 2022.

By Nyara Afshar, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore is the 3rd movie of the Fantastic Beasts movie series. It brings the same mysterious, dangerous-yet-exciting adventure as the movies that came before it. Actor Eddie Redmayne's character, Newt Scamander has a new mission that is more courageous and dangerous than before! Can he do it? Will Newt and his team be able to successfully complete this mission?

Newt Scamander and his team are tasked with trying to stop Gellert Grindelwald (Mads Mikkelsen) from taking over the wizarding world. Not only is this movie mysterious with great humor, but it is also dark, eerie and action packed with enough action and suspense to keep you guessing. There are parts where I laughed so hard--I love a movie when I can get a good laugh in. Let's talk about suspense: The whole movie kept me on my toes. I kept wondering what was going to happen next. I was never able to predict what would happen next, which made the movie extremely enjoyable. Viewers of the previous Fantastic Beasts movies will really enjoy this movie. Part 3 aligns perfectly with the other two movies; therefore, it makes it easy to follow what was going on from the start. Honestly, you really do not need to watch the other two to follow the movie.

There is a lot going on in the movie with switching clips from one character to next, yet the camera quality and editing makes it easy to keep up with. The acting also makes this movie wonderful-- it has a marvelous cast, and you can see how well they all worked together. I really enjoyed the plot and storyline of this movie. It is interesting all the way through, and I never lost my attention.

The message of this movie is to not judge people or alienate others because they can't do certain things, look different, and accept your family members for who they are. The movie is kid appropriate. There's no bad language or drugs. The most violence shown is battling with the wands. Some of the creatures can be scary or creepy for younger kids, but it is not too bad.

I give Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 13 to 18, plus adults. The film releases in theaters April 15, 2022.

By Ava Coleman, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

After four years of waiting, the third movie in the Fantastic Beasts franchise is finally here! Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore has a perfect balance of comedic scenes that will make you chuckle and action-packed scenes that will make your adrenaline pump and tightly grip your seat.

Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law), former partner of Gellert Grindelwald (Mads Mikkelsen) and future headmaster of Hogwarts, calls upon Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), the socially awkward but loveable "magizoologist" to lead a team of witches, wizards and muggles to defeat Grindelwald and his vast crowd of supporters before he takes over the Wizarding World and starts a war between muggles and wizards.

I highly recommend watching the first two films in this prequel, Harry Potter spin-off series, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald before watching this third installment. However, it is not necessary to watch the Harry Potter movies or read the Harry Potter books. The special effects are remarkable, as all the magical animals are truly "fantastic" and the magic spells coming out of the wands are so convincing. The movie takes place in the 1930s and the costumes, objects and sets are absolutely beautiful and so well put together. The movie also maintains an accuracy to the era. The acting is very strong in this movie, especially with Jude Law as Albus Dumbledore, Mads Mikkelsen as Grindelwald, Eddie Redmayne as Newt, and Jessica Williams as Professor Hicks. My favorite character is, without a doubt, Jacob Kowalski, (Dan Fogler), the amiable muggle, because he is so hilarious at some points and also convincingly serious in others.

The message of Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore is to do what is right and not what is easy. There is violence and death in this movie, so be aware of that for younger viewers.

I give Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Fans of the Wizarding World will definitely enjoy this. This will be released exclusively in theaters on April 15, 2022.

By Katherine Schell, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Now everything makes sense! Fantastic Beasts: Secrets of Dumbledore is the story all Harry Potter Fans have been waiting to witness.

As mentioned in the title, this film takes us on a journey through the incredible and unpredictable backstory of Albus Dumbledore. The wizard we all know and love is revealed to have a darker past that has impacted the lives of all wizards and humans.

Despite the title, Dumbledore is not in every scene--however, this brilliantly adds suspense and mystery throughout the execution of the plot. The main character Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) creates cohesiveness throughout this entire Fantastic Beasts franchise. Witch Eulalie Hicks (Jessica Williams) is a wonderful addition to the team--however, one thing I notice is how forced her personality comes across. The costume design and music score are phenomenal. Both interestingly work together in different settings throughout. My favorite scenes are the ones with Jacob Kowalski (Dan Folger) who is the best comic relief for such a heavy story.

The message of this film is to never forget who you are and where you come from. Dumbledore had to come to terms with his past in order to solve the predicament that he is in. Some scenes may be mature for younger audiences.

I give Fantastic Beasts: Secrets of Dumbledore 5 out 5 stars and recommend it for ages 12 to 18, plus adults. Fantastic Beasts: Secrets of Dumbledore comes out Friday, April 15, 2022 in theaters.
Juror Recommended Age: 12-18 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: FeatureFilm


KIDS FIRST ENDORSED
FAIRLY ODDPARENTS, THE: FAIRLY ODDER
FAIRLY ODDPARENTS, THE: FAIRLY ODDER - PARAMOUNT PLUS
Series: TV SERIES, AGES 5-12
Description - Combining live action and animation, The Fairly Oddparents: Fairly Odder will pick up years after the original ended by following Timmy Turner's cousin, Vivian "Viv" Turner, and her new stepbrother, Roy Raskin, as they navigate life in Dimmsdale with the help of their fairy godparents, Wanda and Cosmo. In The Fairly Oddparents: Fairly Odder, Ty Turner uproots his life to reunite with his high school sweetheart, Rachel Raskin, in the town of Dimmsdale, thrusting his cautious 13-year-old daughter, Viv, into a new world where she does not fit in. Once there, Viv's cousin, Timmy, entrusts his fairy godparents, Wanda and Cosmo, to help her adjust by taking her under their wings. Witnessing the fairy transfer take place, Viv's charismatic new stepbrother, Roy, also inherits them, and the two siblings must take turns making wishes. Together, they learn to overcome the obstacles in their path, all with the help from their new wand-wielding and wish-granting fairy godparents.
KIDS FIRST!® Adult Jurors say - see youth comments
KIDS FIRST!® Kid Jurors say - The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder is funny new animated series, based on the original, that's sure to give you a good laugh. Besides many funny moments, the show has more serious moments that deliver important messages.

This show is about Vivian Turner (Audrey Grace Marshall) whose Dad, Ty Turner (Ryan-James Hatanka), uproots their life to go live with his new wife, Rachel Raskin (Laura Bell Bundy) and her son, Roy Raskin (Tyler Wladis). The crew has some hilarious adventures when suddenly Roy and Vivian get unlimited wishes from the Fairy Godparents, Wanda (Susanne Blakeslee) and Cosmo (Daran Norris).

The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder is unusual in many ways. One is that the Fairy Godparents, Wanda and Cosmo, as well as a few minor characters are animated while everyone else is live action. For the actors in live action, they have the benefit of using many other things like facial expressions and body languages as well as their voices. Another interesting thing is that there is a Council of Pop Superstars made up of Dustan Lumberlake (Garrett Clayton) as well as three other pop stars in the show. Lastly, there are some very cool personalities among the characters such as Roy who is more of a classic jock, yet is also very kind and compassionate. And Vivian is a shy person who-- as she gets used to everything--opens up a bit more.

The overall message of The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder is to show your love for your family and to have fun throughout your life.

I give The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 12. It premieres on March 31, 2022, exclusively on Paramount+.

By Avalon Niemi, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Juror Recommended Age: 5-12 Suggested Retail Price: $ Media: TV



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