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Movie Reviews

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Best Bucket Movies

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Winchester-Kids’ Movie Review

Are haunted houses real? Winchester, set in 1906 San Jose, Ca, follows the life of rifle heiress Sarah Winchester (Helen Mirren). After Sarah inherits her husband’s profitable rifle company she’s determined to build a mansion. After all, many people have died by the Winchester guns, so this is her way of dealing with the ghosts of those who have passed. Things get complicated when the board of the Winchester Rifle Co. hires Dr. Eric Price (Jason Clarke) to evaluate Sarah’s psychological state. When Dr. Price interviews Sarah he discovers that’s she’s spunky and clever. Price eventually realizes that Sarah Winchester talks to spirits and that her seven story mansion, filled with hundreds of rooms, are actually built for the victims of the Winchester guns. Price learns that Sarah Winchester’s ghosts are real… and so is her haunted house. Winchester is based on true events.

 


 

 

Rating: 2 and 1/2 out of 5 popcorn buckets
Release Date:
February 2, 2018
MPAA Rating:
PG13
Best Age Group:
13+
Sexual Content:
Mild
Violent/Disturbing Content:
Excessive
Crude or Profane Language:
Mild
Drug and Alcohol Content:
Moderate
Will Kids Like It?
No

 

 

 

Talking Points:

Sexual Content: Mild

  • We see a male character with three women; he’s shown kissing each of them. It’s implied that they might be prostitutes.
  • A woman’s naked back is shown.

Violent/Disturbing Content: Excessive

  • There’s some gun violence. One scene shows a flashback of a mass killing.
  • A child is possessed by a spirit and is shown shooting a woman. He also jumps off a house ledge.
  • A painting appears to bleed.
  • There are several ghosts in creepy scenes.

Crude or Profane Language: Mild

  • We hear “b–ch” said once.

Drug and Alcohol Content: Moderate

  • A main character has a drug and alcohol problem. He frequently ingests drops of laudanum from a glass dropper. He also drinks from a flask, and enjoys drinking whisky at home.

Will Kids Like It? No

  • I interviewed some teens who thought the film wasn’t that scary and even somewhat boring.

Overall this is a horror film based on true events. Parents need to be aware of the violence and drug and alcohol contents.

 

 

 

 

 

The Commuter-Kids’ Movie Review

Life is good for Michael MacCauley (Liam Neeson). He has a good job as an insurance salesman, he’s happily married, and has a teenage son who’s headed to Syracuse University. Michael has a very regimented daily routine as he commutes on the train everyday in and out of New York. Michael’s life dramatically changes on one of his daily commutes. He learns that he’s going to get fired, just when he needs to pay a lot of money for his son’s college tuition. Feeling very sad and defeated, Michael’s train ride is not going very well, and it eventually gets even worse. A woman on the train offers him $100,000 if he’s willing to find a passenger who doesn’t belong on the train, and he must find this person before the train’s last stop. Michael soon realizes that his wife and son will be in danger if he doesn’t follow the rules. Now Michael has to figure this strange puzzle not only to save his family’s life but also the innocent victims on the train.

 

3-buckets-2

 

 

 

CommuterRating: 3 out of 5 popcorn buckets
Release Date:
January 11, 2017
MPAA Rating:
PG13
Best Age Group:
13+
Sexual Content:
Mild
Violent/Disturbing Content:
Excessive
Crude or Profane Language:
Excessive
Drug and Alcohol Content:
Mild
Will Kids Like It?
Yes

 

 

 

Talking Points:

Sexual Content: Mild

  • We see Michael and his wife kiss in bed together, they are fully clothed.

Violent/Disturbing Content: Excessive

  • There are several brutal fight scenes with martial arts, stabbing with knives, punching, hitting and shooting. We see many bloody wounds.
  • We see a man pushed in front of a bus.
  • There’s an intense train crash.

Crude or Profane Language: Excessive

  • We hear “f–k,” “s–t,” “h-ll,” “goddamn,” and bullsh-t.”.

Drug and Alcohol Content: Mild

  • There’s a scene where we see a man drinking several pints of beer in a bar.

Will Kids Like It? Yes

Overall this is an exciting action packed drama. Having said that it’s very similar to Liam Neeson’s  previous films. Parents need to be aware of the language and excessive violence.

 

Paddington 2- Kids’ Movie Review

“Be kind and polite and the world will be right.” That’s a quote from Paddington’s Aunt Lucy. He loves his aunt and frequently quotes her. Paddington wants to find the perfect gift for his aunt’s 100th birthday. He eventually sees a pop-up book about London in his friend’s antique shop. However, the book is very expensive so Paddington does odd jobs until he can afford it. Unfortunately, a mysterious thief steals the book right before Paddington goes to buy it. Sadly, Paddington is wrongly accused of the robbery and is sentenced to prison. Now the adventure begins as the adorable, fun loving bear becomes a prisoner and charms all the inmates. Paddington 2 continues the story of Paddington bear who lives happily with his adopted family in London.

 

4half-bucket

 

 

 

 

Paddington 2Rating: 4.5 out of 5 popcorn buckets
Release Date:
January 11, 2017
MPAA Rating:
PG
Best Age Group:
5+
Sexual Content:
None
Violent/Disturbing Content:
Moderate
Crude or Profane Language:
Mild
Drug and Alcohol Content:
Mild
Will Kids Like It?
Yes

 

 

 

Talking Points:

  • There are some great messages for young kids. Paddington’s Aunt Lucy says, “Look for the best in people and you’ll find it.” Paddington lives by his aunt’s rules,  even in prison.
  • Paddington always wants to do the right thing. He typically thinks of others before himself.

Sexual Content: None

Violent/Disturbing Content: Moderate

  • During a robbery Paddington chases a thief through a store and down the streets.
  • Paddington is surrounded by many scary looking inmates when he’s in prison. Initially they are intimidating and mean to the poor bear, but they eventually befriend him.
  • A villain has a sword and fights with a main character.
  • Paddinton falls in a river and nearly drowns.
  • There’s a very sad scene when Paddinton’s adopted parents don’t visit him on visiting day in prison. We see Paddington in bed crying as he thinks they no longer love him.

Crude or Profane Language: Mild

  • Name calling such as “coward,” and “weirdo.”

Drug and Alcohol Content: Mild

  • Champagne is served on a train ride.

Will Kids Like It? Yes

Overall, this is a wonderful movie for the whole family.

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle-Kids’ Movie Review

“Welcome to detention and think about who you are and what you want to be.” That’s what four high school teens heard when they’re sent to the principal’s office for detention. All on the same day but all for different reasons. There’s Bethany, the self-absorbed popular girl; Martha, the bookish smart girl; Spencer, the nerdy boy; and Anthony (a.k.a Fridge) the football stud. While in detention the two boys discover the Jumanji game and convince the girls to play. After they choose their avatar they are pulled into the game and living in the jungle. In the game, each teen has a specific strength which they will eventually use to get out of the game, and save Jumanji from an evil villain. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is an updated adaptation of Chris Van Allsburg’s picture book, however this time the board game magically turns into a video game.

 

 

Jumanji- Welcome to the jungleRating: 3.5 out of 5 popcorn buckets
Release Date:
December 20, 2017
MPAA Rating:
PG13
Best Age Group:
10+
Sexual Content:
Moderate
Violent/Disturbing Content:
Moderate
Crude or Profane Language:
Moderate
Drug and Alcohol Content:
Mild
Will Kids Like It?
Yes

 

 

Talking Points:

Sexual Content: Moderate

  • One of the female teens is in a male avatar for most of the movie. There’s discussion on what it’s like for her to have a penis. There’s even reference to an erection.
  • One of the teen girls instructs the other girl on how to flirt and use her sexuality.

Violent/Disturbing Content: Moderate

  • Since Jumanji is set in an action game, there is a of violence. There are many explosive scenes, shooting, and several battles throughout the film.
  • A character is trampled by rhinos, another one is bitten by a snake and then disappears, and a someone is mauled by a jaguar.

Crude or Profane Language: Moderate

  • We hear “sh-t,” “a–,” “d–n,”  “b–ch,” and “h-ll.

Drug and Alcohol Content: Mild

  • In one scene the teens (as their adult avatars) all drink margaritas. One of the teens has several glasses and proceeds to get tipsy. The others spit it out.

Will Kids Like It? Yes

Overall this is a fun, entertaining film. Parents need to be aware of the moderate violence, sexual and profane language.

Coco-Kids’ Movie Review

Miguel (voice of Anthony Gonzalez), a young Mexican boy, loves music. He desperately wants to follow his dream of becoming a musician like his idol Ernesto de la Cruz. However, Miguel’s family despises music and even bans it from their house. Miguel is supposed to follow in the family business crafting fine shoes.  When Miguel takes his music interest a little too far he suffers a serious consequence and is transported to the colorful and vibrant, Land of the Dead. There, Miguel teams up with an interesting skeleton and embarks on an exciting journey. Coco is a wonderful Disney/Pixar film that explores the traditions of the Day of the Dead.

 

4half-bucket

 

 

 

 

CocoRating: 4 and 1/2 out of 5 popcorn buckets
Release Date:
December 1, 2017
MPAA Rating:
PG
Best Age Group:
5+
Sexual Content:
Mild
Violent/Disturbing Content:
Moderate
Crude or Profane Language:
Mild
Drug and Alcohol Content:
Mild
Will Kids Like It?
Yes

 

 

 

 

Talking Points:

Sexual Content: Mild

  • We see a man painting a nude female skeleton.
  • We see a man kissing a woman.

Violent/Disturbing Content: Excessive

  • A character is crushed by a giant bell.
  • In the Land of the Dead the skeletons body parts come apart; such as heads, jawbones, eyeball, etc.
  • We see a popular character who dissolves to dust and fades away. This is a disturbing scene that may upset kids.
  • A large flying animal growls and may scare kids.
  • There is some slapstick violence with a lot of chase scenes.
  • Someone is tossed in a deep well; another character falls from a great height.

Crude or Profane Language: Mild

  • We hear “stupid,” “dumb,” and  “jerks.”

Drug and Alcohol Content: Mild

  • We see characters celebrating with alcoholic drinks.

Will Kids Like It? Yes

  • I interviewed a 10 year old girl who loved the movie. She enjoyed the characters and the music. I also interviewed her 4 year old brother who said he loved it. They didn’t get scared, and the film held their attention.

Overall this is an entertaining film for the whole family. Depending on the child, I recommend this for kids ages 5 and up.

 

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