Archive for Family & Kids

Walt Disney Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures,

Auli’i Cravalho, Dwayne Johnson, Alan Tudyk, Jemaine Clement, Rachel House, Temuera Morrison, Nicole Scherzinger

Moana (Auli’i Cravalho), is a Polynesian teen who is set to be the leader of her people. But an ancient curse has made it’s way to Moana’s island. Their tribe has never traveled off their island, but Moana is excited to learn that her ancestors traveled all over, and she learns that the curse was caused by a demigod, Maui (Dwayne Johnson) who has disappeared. We watch her on her journey to find Maui and convince him to come back to make the situation right again.

This Disney animated film reminds me of Lilo and Stitch a lot. The story is cute enough, and everyone raves about the music. But I had a few issues with this film. First of all, this movie is too much “Rock”. Some voice actors can create a character voice that is unique and very interesting. Others like Mr. Rock can only play themselves, and throughout the entire performance, there is no doubt that you’re listening to Dwayne Johnson, and that is a huge distraction. The story is also rather plodding, and never really caught my interest fully, so it was hard to watch. I have been waiting and waiting for this film, and I guess my expectations were way too high, and I was let down quite a bit. Not that it’s bad, mind you, but just disappointing. So the kids will enjoy the film, and the music is really good, and the highlight of the film. It’s a quality Disney movie, but just a bit of a let down from their usual quality.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Mandeville Films, Walt Disney Pictures,

Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans, Kevin Kline, Josh Gad, Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci, Audra McDonald, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Ian McKellen, Emma Thompson

This live action version of the classic Disney feature Beauty and the Beast stars Emma Watson as Belle, the beautiful daughter of Maurice (Kevin Kline) who is captured and imprisoned in the cursed enchanted castle of The Beast (Dan Stevens). In order to break the curse, the Beast must learn to love, but also be loved in return. Naturally we all are cheering with the hope that love once again conquers all.

This is a film that could have come out completely different. Disney wanted to NOT make this film a musical, and tell a story without the songs. But the songs are far too amazing to be left behind, and it would have been a huge disaster. As it is, there is a lot of time, a lot of additional backstory, and the correction of a few error that makes this as familiar as ever, but with much more richness and beauty to add and make it a must see. The story is handled with loving care, and the things that are added to it only made it better. Emma Watson is beautiful as Belle, and a lot of her personal strength and attitude went into it as she added few changes to the role that fixed the story. It is stunningly beautiful, from the ugly castle, to the snowy forest filled with wolves, to the ballroom scene. This version of the mandatory Be Our Guest song is wonderfully done. SO many things could have gone wrong to ruin this movie, but it is perfect. This certainly came together well and will ensure Disney has enough money to shoot themselves in the foot again in the future, but this time they came through unscathed. And from the audience reaction to the trailer for the next “Pirates of the Caribbean” movie, it seems that one is a lock too. I completely loved this film and will definitely add this to my list of memories I will never lose. This was a very good movie, and one I encourage everyone to get out to see while you can! It’s definitely worth it.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Hammer & Tongs, Illumination Entertainment, Universal Pictures,

Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon, Seth MacFarlane, Tori Kelly, John C. Reilly, Taron Egerton, Scarlett Johansson

Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey) is the owner of a failing theater in the city. He has an idea to host a talent show and pay the owners 1000.00 which is the last of his money, but a clerical error prints the flyers at $100,000. Hundreds of animals line up for a chance to audition to win the grand prize including a misunderstood gorilla son, a very shy elephant, and a fun mixture of musical animals. Buster needs help to try to save the theater or it’s all lost.

On the day after Christmas 5 of my grandchildren and their parents, and my wife and I saw Sing in 3D. I have been waiting for this one for quite some time. I was not disappointed. This was a beautiful little film. The music is really good and the comedy was non-stop. Everyone from the smallest 6 year old to the oldest 65 (myself) and every one in between thought it was really good. The animation is top notch and the picture is great. There are some great voices in there, and the characters were very well played. I must say, “Very Well Done”. If you get a chance to catch this one in the theater, don’t miss the opportunity. Give yourself one more Christmas present this year!

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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NWave Pictures, Serengeti Entertainment, Atlantic Productions,

Tim Allen

Rex (Tim Allen) the penguin has been off at sea for three years learning how to catch fish and avoid predators. Now it’s time for him to return to Penguin City and find a mate and settle down. But according to the laws of nature, when the egg is lain, the male must stand over and keep the egg warm all winter while the female heads out to sea to gorge herself with fish. This is the story of a year in the life of the penguins (particularly Rex) watching his egg and raising his child.

This film has some of the best nature footage I have seen. It’s certainly very high quality and very instructing and very entertaining. Seeing this in IMAX 3-D would have been wonderful. But there is a problem. Well, perhaps it’s a problem, but the narration is by Tim Allen who is a really great guy and a good actor, but it’s a voice over of everything from Rex’s point of view. The problem is that they fall into the trap of making up a story that probably has nothing in the world to do with real king penguins. It is really cutesy, with lots of made up thoughts that is really very childish. On the other hand, this might be really good for young children who could learn a lot about the species while hearing an entertaining story along with it. It’s a bit like on one hand there is DisneyNature Bears, and on the other hand there is “Charlie the Lonesome Cougar”. For those of you who are not familiar, Disney sent out photographers into the wild to capture wildlife footage by the mile. With what they brought back (and truthfully I’m certain a lot of it was staged), they turned it into two types of features. On one hand they had Disney’s True-Life Adventures (the childhood version of the new DisneyNature films) which were very educational and really tried to show nature in natural terms, and Charlie, the Lonesome Cougar on the other hand was a childhood adventure made for the kids, and shown on the Disney Sunday night TV show in 2 parts. Both served a different purpose. This version of the film is the childish one, and it loses a bit, in my opinion, due to the silly dialog made up strictly for entertainment. But there is a lot of information here. Now, one final point. There is a European version of this film narrated by David Attenborough. I have included both previews below. His version “sounds” like the serious version I was looking for, but unfortunately that soundtrack was not available to me. It would be wonderful for them to provide both tracks to allow you to choose both. Perhaps that will happen in a release at some point. All in all, this was a good movie, and really a lot of fun to watch. I recommend it.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Hanna-Barbera Productions, Warner Bros. Animation,

Frank Welker, Mindy Cohn, Grey Griffin, Matthew Lillard, Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Eric Singer, Tommy Thayer, Jennifer Carpenter, Garry Marshall, Penny Marshall

A horrible ghost starts haunting KISS World amusement park where the rock band KISS is set to play and have chased all the kids away . It looks like the park is going to close until the Mystery INC. gang show up to help, only to find that they’ll have to work with KISS themselves to find the cause of the haunting. That’s not a problem as the gang are major KISS fans anyway as they search to expose the cause of the haunting.

I was definitely not impressed a lot with this movie, although I have to admit I have never been a major fan of Scooby-Doo! in the first place. When my kids were small I used to watch a good many of them, but quickly found them to be all the same. Well this hour and a quarter Saturday Morning cartoon is a little longer, but follows the exact formula of everything else they have done. It’s a TV Animation direct to DVD film that was made, obviously, to make a buck or two from the Scooby and Shaggy fans out there, and it’s good for that. Also, bringing KISS into the mix means that they are able to take the same material that could be a 30 minute cartoon TV show and blow it up to 78 minutes by including many of the classic KISS songs. That is actually one of the highlights of the show as KISS still kicks butt after all these years. So fans are going to like it, but I’m not sure (unless you want to hear the KISS tunes) that the average joe like me is going to care for this very much. Just be aware when you go in that it’s not a feature film. It’s a TV Cartoon with long music breaks. If you don’t expect a lot, you won’t be disappointed.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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