Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Summer rewind: Movies and more


It's no secret that this summer we saw a lot of movies.

And I mean, a LOT of movies.

Open houses + hot weather + tired kids = movies!

(Note: If you live near a Dickenson Theater and have a kiddo under the age of 4, know that your kiddo will get in for free. No joke!)

A review of the movies seen this summer:

5) Zoo Keeper: Sadly, Zoo Keeper was more entertaining for me but when it came to my kids, they were very bored by it. Unlike Mr. Popper's Penguins, Zoo Keeper focused too much on the drama and less on the animals. Zoey started to get antsy around the 20 minute mark. The story itself is pretty cut-and-dry, but I would say it's more marketed for the 8-12 age range. Jack understood what was going on, but even he had trouble with it.

4) Winnie the Pooh: This was the last movie to come out over the summer movie extravaganza for us, and unfortunately it just disappointed. We even went on opening day, and the theater was pretty much empty. My kids don't love Winnie the Pooh, but they know the characters and will watch it every once in a while. However, this movie just fell flat. From a kid's standpoint, it was pretty dull. There were some cute and funny moments, but both of my kids lost interest within the first 25 minutes. I feel like they spent more time on the old-school animation style and attracting those older audiences than they did actually entertaining kids.

3) Mr. Popper's Penguins: I hated this movie. There, I said it. It really just flat-lined for me. My kids, however, thought that it was just great. Why, do you ask? Because it stayed focused on the penguins. There was some back-story like Zoo Keeper, but the penguins were the stars of the show. Even though I do feel like it was once again aimed for the 8-12 crowd, both of my kids enjoyed it, even if it was just to see the penguins. Of all the movies we saw this summer, I would say that this one is smack-dab in the middle.

1) Rio: We loved Rio so much that we saw it three times this summer. Three times! My kids loved it, the music was so fun that we ended up downloading the soundtrack and quite honestly it was a fun waste of 90 minutes. It never gets too dark, too slow or too sentimental. The ending pretty much throws the storyline off a cliff, but for the most part it was a favorite. If you think that the best movie of the summer should be light and just...fun...then this was the top! This movie reminds me of the newest version of Hairspray - it's just a fun movie that will make your toes start tapping in the very first scene.

1) Cars 2: We waited for Cars 2 for months. Disney Pixar has a YouTube channel, and their creative marketing made it possible for us to get Jack (and Zoey, by default) super excited for the opening weekend. The kids have also seen this movie three times. For an animated movie, it's amazing - the graphics are top-notch and it really is one of the best. However, it's not the best Pixar has made. It just didn't have the script or momentum to take it to the next level. Of course, that's just me talking as an adult. Jack loved it, as did Zoey to a lesser extent. If you're basing the #1 movie of the summer off graphics and marketability, Cars 2 is the winner. 

So there you have it! Our guide to the kid movies of 2011. There were plenty we didn't see (Smurfs) and even more we can't wait to watch (Muppets, Happy Feet 2).


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