Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue

Posted on September 20, 2010 at 7:00 am

B
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Profanity: None
Alcohol/ Drugs: None
Violence/ Scariness: Mild peril
Diversity Issues: None
Date Released to Theaters: 2010
Date Released to DVD: September 21, 2010
Amazon.com ASIN: B003DT19F0

Tinker Bell has found her voice in a popular series of DVDs that give Peter Pan’s sidekick a chance for her own adventures in her home town of Pixie Hollow. She and her fairy friends Rosetta, Silvermist, Fawn and Iridessa help to make the four seasons vibrant and beautiful.

In this episode, for the first time Tink makes a human friend, Lizzy, played by Lauren Mote. Lizzy and her affectionate but distracted scientist father (voice of Michael Sheen of “Alice in Wonderland” and “Frost/Nixon”) move into a small house near the woods. Tinker Bell and Lizzy find a way to communicate with each other about their different worlds. And they have to help each other when Tinker Bell is at risk of being captured and Lizzy needs to find a way to remind her father that all work and no fun is, well, no fun, and not very healthy for families either.

The design is rich in texture and detail, showing the influence of Pixar head John Lasseter, who produced, and the story is charming, with top-notch voice talent and a sweet message about friendship, integrity, and family.

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Animation Based on a play DVD/Blu-Ray Pick of the Week Family Issues For the Whole Family Stories About Kids
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The Pajama Game

Posted on August 30, 2010 at 8:00 am

B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: NR
Profanity: None
Alcohol/ Drugs: Social drinking, character gets drunk
Violence/ Scariness: Some tense confrontations, knife-throwing tricks
Diversity Issues: Strong women
Date Released to Theaters: 1957
Date Released to DVD: August 29, 2011
Amazon.com ASIN: B0007QS306

Labor Day is a good time to see this musical about the romance between a representative of the union (Doris Day) and a representative of management (John Raitt). It has the good sense to keep the plot out of the way of the wonderful songs (like “Hey There” and “Steam Heat”) and the ebulliently energetic dance numbers (choreographed by Bob Fosse). But there is enough of a plot to provide an opportunity to discuss the ways in which workers and managers might feel differently about things, and how they work together to find the best solution for both of them.

NOTE: There is a subplot about a man who is irrationally jealous and possessive, played for humor.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJJcDSZjxrk

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Based on a play Comedy DVD/Blu-Ray Pick of the Week Musical Romance

Grease: The Singalong Version!

Posted on July 11, 2010 at 12:06 pm

It’s the one that you want!

You probably already know the words, but it’s great to see them up on the big screen and it is really fun to sing along. For just one moment, we’re all students at Rydell High.

Tell me more!

Check here to see where it is playing and order tickets online as many shows are already sold out. If your city is not on the list, demand it!

NOTE: “Grease” was rated PG when it first came out, before the introduction of the PG-13 rating. It is now rated PG-13 for sexual content including references, teen smoking and drinking, and language. Parents should know that the themes include a possible teen pregnancy and the movie suggests that the way to get a boyfriend is to act like a tramp. This is all presented in a heightened, parody tone but it may be disturbing to younger audiences.

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Based on a play Classic Date movie High School Musical Romance

Nine

Posted on April 27, 2010 at 8:08 am

High profile director Guido Contini (Daniel Day-Lewis) has everything he needs to make his ninth movie and more. Much more. It is Italy in the early 1960’s and Guido is a glamorous celebrity, a name brand, a commodity. His production team is ready, including his close friend and adviser, costume designer Lilli (Judi Dench), his star and muse Claudia (Nicole Kidman), and his producers. He also has a devoted wife Luisa (Oscar winner Marianne Cotillard), a mistress Carla (Penelope Cruz), a mother (Sophia Loren), a pretty reporter from Vogue named Stephanie who wants more from him than an interview (Kate Hudson), and memories of the first woman to teach him about desire Saraghina (Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas).

What he does not have is a script, or even an idea of where to begin.

Which gives him something in common with director Rob Marshall (“Chicago”), because beyond the idea of a director who has too much on his mind and not enough ideas this movie does not have anything to say. Marshall has a great appreciation for female beauty and a lot of style. That’s a great reason to watch a music video but it is not really a reason to make or watch a movie.

Marshall trots out his bevy of international beauties, and each gets a musical number, some of them stunning. Fergie’s deep, rich-throated “Be Italian” and an almost-endless chorus line of tambourine-beating back-up singers, is sheer electricity. But the only one that comes close to reaching that level is Hudson, channeling her mother, Goldie Hawn, in a spangled silver mini-dress and go-go boots.

Cruz finds some sizzle in the notorious “Call from the Vatican” number, though no one can match the late Anita Morris, whose performance was considered too incendiary (and her costume too revealing) for the Tony Awards broadcast in 1982. But the musical numbers are not up to the level of “Chicago” and the lyrics in particular cannot stand up to the loving attention given to them by these actresses. At the end, it’s as empty as its subject.

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Based on a play Musical Remake

Once Upon a Mattress

Posted on February 1, 2010 at 8:00 am

A-
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: NR
Profanity: None
Alcohol/ Drugs: None
Violence/ Scariness: Tense family situations
Diversity Issues: A theme of the movie
Date Released to Theaters: 2005
Date Released to DVD: 2005
Amazon.com ASIN: B000ATQYVK

“Once Upon a Mattress,” a musical version of “The Princess and the Pea,” is one of my favorites. Carol Burnett became a star for her portrayal of the kind-hearted but rather loud princess when it premiered on Broadway and she repeated the part in two television broadcasts. In this version she plays the queen, who will do anything to stay in power, which means stopping her timid son from finding a bride. The songs, written by Mary Rodgers (daughter of Richard Rodgers of “South Pacific” and “The King and I”) and Marshall Barer, are tuneful, witty, and utterly charming.

In supporting roles, Zooey Deschanel (“(500) Days of Summer”) and Matthew Morrison (“Glee”) are fairy-tale perfect. A great family movie!

(NOTE: Some mild references to making babies)

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