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Movie Mom

January 1970 Archives

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genre

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quality

  • A+, A, A-
  • B+, B, B-
  • C+, C, C-
  • D+, D, D-
  • F+, F, F-

who's watching

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age range

  • Kindergarten - 3rd grade
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Shark Week!

posted by Nell Minow

Could Shark Week get any better?  Yes!  This year, the Discovery Channel has dubbed SNL’s Andy Samberg its “Chief Shark Officer.”  Samberg told CNN it was a dream come true. Well, it was a childhood dream, obviously. Even though I’m […]

Contest: ‘A Dolphin Tale’ Stuffed Dolphin

posted by Nell Minow

“A Dolphin Tale” comes out next month with Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd, and Harry Connick, Jr. in a story of a dolphin named Winter whose tail is damaged in a crab trap.  It’s a heartwarming film based on an extraordinary […]

Crazy, Stupid, Love

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for coarse humor, sexual content, and language
Movie Release Date:July 29, 2011
DVD Release Date:November 1, 2011
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for coarse humor, sexual content, and language
Movie Release Date: July 29, 2011
DVD Release Date: November 1, 2011

This painful comedy about the agonies of love has some deftly observed moments and strong performances but its essential tawdriness overwhelms its efforts to be cuddly and life-affirming. Everyone is miserably in love with the wrong person.  Steve Carell plays […]

DVDs for Teachers: Scholastic Giveaway

posted by Nell Minow

In honor of all the wonderful teachers who are having a well-deserved break before getting back to lesson plans and grading homework, I have a giveaway just for the people who working to inspire the curiosity and critical thinking skills […]

Cowboys & Aliens

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Pated PG-13 for intense sequences of western and sci-fi action and violence, some partial nudity and a brief crude reference
Movie Release Date:July 29, 2011
DVD Release Date:December 6, 2011
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Pated PG-13 for intense sequences of western and sci-fi action and violence, some partial nudity and a brief crude reference
Movie Release Date: July 29, 2011
DVD Release Date: December 6, 2011

The last word I thought I’d be using about a movie called “Cowboys & Aliens” is “realistic,” but what I like best about this film is the way it uses the most speculative of fantasies for thoughtful exploration, not just […]

Quick Quiz

posted by Nell Minow

No fair using Google or IMDB!  In honor of this week’s release of “Cowboys & Aliens,” who can tell me the last time Harrison Ford saddled up in a Western?

Comic-Con: Final Round-Up and Coming Attractions

posted by Nell Minow

“We have to realize that something important has happened,” one of the presenters said at Comic-Con.  “We won.  All around us in movies, television and books there are vampires, zombies, superheroes, magic, and aliens.”  He was exaggerating, of course, but […]

The Smurfs

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild rude humor and action
Movie Release Date:July 29, 2011
DVD Release Date:December 2, 2011
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild rude humor and action
Movie Release Date: July 29, 2011
DVD Release Date: December 2, 2011

After a promising beginning with the tart but sweet romantic comedy “Never Been Kissed,” director Raja Gosnell has been mired in the quagmire of movie junk food, “family” movies like “Scooby-Doo” and “Yours, Mine and Ours.”  They are the cinematic […]

Christian Movie Connect: New Video Podcast Premieres Today

posted by Nell Minow

Christian Movie Connect is a new weekly video podcast hosted and produced by faith-based film producer and media personality Cheryl Ariaz Wicker.  It premieres today with the kickoff show featuring actor John Schneider, talking about his role on the upcoming […]

Harry Potter and the Curse of the Non-Fair Trade Chocolate

posted by Nell Minow

The last of the Harry Potter films is out and Fandango reported over 5000 shows were sold out before opening day. It’s a likely candidate for this year’s box office champion with multi-million dollar revenues from tickets and perhaps even more from the […]

Comic-Con: Catching Up with the Winner Twins

posted by Nell Minow

One of my favorite moments at Comic-Con each year is my chance to catch up with the brilliant and beautiful Winner twins, Brianna and Brittney, whose astonishing mastery of story and vocabulary has produced an extraordinary body of work.  The […]

Interview: Brendan Wayne of ‘Cowboys & Aliens’

posted by Nell Minow

Brendan Wayne of “Cowboys & Aliens” is the grandson of movie legend John Wayne.  He talked to me about visiting his grandfather’s movie sets and acting and doing his own stunts in one of this year’s most anticipated blockbusters.  And […]

Comic-Con: Big News from Riverdale and Archie Comics

posted by Nell Minow

I had a blast at the Archie Comic panel.  Everyone there was a nice and friendly and enthusiastic as you would hope to find in the idyllic environs of Riverdale.  But there is very big news.  In its own nice […]

Comic-Con: The Director Mash-Ups

posted by Nell Minow

One of the great pleasures of Comic-Con is hearing film-makers talk to us about their movies.  But it gets exponentially better when we get to listen in to them talk to each other.  The infinitely generous Guillermo Del Toro (he […]

Comic-Con, Part 2

posted by Nell Minow

I got to meet with the stars of three upcoming films from Lionsgate today. First was Australian Joel Edgerton and British Tom Hardy who play estranged brothers from Pittsburgh in “Warrior,” the story of a mixed martial arts championship bout […]

Interview: Mike Cahill and Brit Marling of ‘Another Earth’

posted by Nell Minow

Mike Cahill and Brit Marling co-wrote “Another Earth.”  He directed, shot, and edited, and she stars as Rhoda, a gifted teenager who makes a tragic mistake.  Driving home after a party, she causes an accident that kills a young mother […]

Friends With Benefits

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date:July 22, 2011
DVD Release Date:December 2, 2011
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date: July 22, 2011
DVD Release Date: December 2, 2011

“Shut up, Katherine Heigl,” says our heroine, as she passes by a wall of posters for another fungible romantic comedy that should be sued for deceptive advertising.  Jamie (Mila Kunis) is an executive recruiter who wants to believe in love […]

Comic-Con 2011, Day 1

posted by Nell Minow

Any day I get to talk to Guy Pearce, Carey Mulligan, Ron Perlman, get to hear the latest on “Twilight: Breaking Dawn, Part 1,” and get to hang out with Power Rangers and the Madagascar Penguins is a very fine […]

Comic-Con 2011

posted by Nell Minow

I’m on my way to Comic-Con 2011, this year featuring the first glimpses of Twilight’s “Breaking Dawn — Part 1″ along with Steven Spielberg’s “The Adventures of Tintin,” the Colin Farrell remake of “Total Recall” and “In Time,” a thriller […]

Smile of the Week: Fred and Judy are A Couple of Swells

posted by Nell Minow

I love this silly number from Easter Parade!

The Booth at the End

posted by Nell Minow

This enigmatic new web series on Hulu raises questions of fate, temptation, sacrifice, and God.  What would you do to get what you want?  What would you give up?  Who would you be if you did?  This episode is called, […]

Progress in Efforts to Cut Back on Smoking in Movies for Kids

posted by Nell Minow

MedPage reports that smoking is down in movies rated G, PG, and PG-13. Overall, there were about 72% fewer on-screen appearances of smoking and tobacco products in G, PG, and PG-13 movies in 2010 than there were in 2005, according […]

Interview: Neville Longbottom (Matthew Lewis), Hero of “Deathly Hallows 2″

posted by Nell Minow

Matthew Lewis has played Neville Longbottom, classmate of Harry, Hermione, and Ron at Hogwarts, for all eight films.  Like the character he plays, Lewis has surprised the fans by turning from an awkward child into a young man of great […]

A Tribute to A Great Partnership — The Muppets’ Jim Henson and Frank Oz

posted by Nell Minow

The Museum of the Moving Image’s fabulous exhibit, Jim Henson’s Fantastic World, opens this weekend!

We Are Wizards: Documentary about Harry Potter Tribute Bands

posted by Nell Minow

Check out We Are Wizards, a documentary about Harry Potter Tribute bands, streaming now at no charge on Hulu.  

Glee 3D!

posted by Nell Minow

HIMYM Billboard Hijacked by New Ads

posted by Nell Minow

I really like “How I Met Your Mother,” and am delighted that older episodes are running in syndication.  But it is jarring to see that background shots have been updated to insert new advertising material.  NPR’s Monkey See blog reports […]

Interview: Lisa See of ‘Snow Flower and the Secret Fan’

posted by Nell Minow

Lisa See is the author of literary novel and book club favorite Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, the story of a deep and loving but sometimes conflicted friendship between two women in 19th century China.  She spoke to me […]

‘The Help’ — Emma Stone and Bryce Dallas Howard

posted by Nell Minow

Bryce Dallas Howard On playing the movie’s villain, Hilly: “I literally don’t want to look at it – she’s such a terrible person.  What’s interesting when you start doing a role is at first the character is really shocking.  But […]

Winnie the Pooh

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:July 15, 2011
DVD Release Date:October 25, 2011
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: July 15, 2011
DVD Release Date: October 25, 2011

Disney’s latest film lovingly captures the magic of A.A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh stories and poems, which have been enchanting children and their parents for 85 years.  They were a sort of earlier “Toy Story,” with the adventures of Christopher Robin’s stuffed tiger, […]

Interview: Mark Henn of ‘Winnie the Pooh’

posted by Nell Minow

Mark Henn was supervising animator for the iconic title character in Disney’s new animated feature, “Winnie the Pooh” and for Christopher Robin as well.  He is a Disney veteran, having served in the same role for Princess Tiana in “The Princess […]

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sequences of intense action violence and frightening images
Movie Release Date:July 15, 2011
DVD Release Date:November 8, 2011
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sequences of intense action violence and frightening images
Movie Release Date: July 15, 2011
DVD Release Date: November 8, 2011

Before I tell you about this film and about how much I liked it, I want to say thank you to J.K. Rowling and Warner Brothers for the care and devotion they gave to this extraordinary story.  On the page […]

My Segment on the Ebert Show: 3D Movies for Kids

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks to Roger and Chaz Ebert and all the wonderful folks at Ebert Presents At the Movies for including my segment on kids and 3D in this week’s show!

‘The Help’ — Writer/Director Tate Taylor and Producer Chris Columbus

posted by Nell Minow

More from the set of “The Help:” Tate Taylor, writer and director of the film, told us, “I grew up coming to Greenwood.  It stopped in time in 1963.  These homes, these locations, these trees – we put together a […]

‘The Help’ — Octavia Spencer

posted by Nell Minow

Octavia Spencer knows the character of Minny in The Help better than anyone else.  Not only did she perform the part with the author on her book tour and in the audio book edition, but it was her outspoken ebullience […]

Tribute: Sherwood Schwartz, creator of ‘Gilligan’s Island’ and ‘The Brady Bunch’

posted by Nell Minow

We mourn the passing of Sherwood Schwartz, who helped define a generation with his enduringly popular if very undeniably silly television series, especially “Gilligan’s Island” and “The Brady Bunch.” He named the sinking ship on “Gilligan’s Island,” the S.S. Minnow, […]

My Speech at Gel on Mistakes

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks to the wonderful folks at Gel for inviting me!     And for much more fun, check out the guys who came after me, the fabulous Fisticuffs gang, all New Yorker cartoonists.

Interview: Allen Zadoff

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to Allen Zadoff, author of the terrific new book, My Life, the Theater, and Other Tragedies, for answering my questions! The actors and techies don’t speak to each other in your book, but one character says that in her other […]

‘The Help’ — Viola Davis

posted by Nell Minow

In my opinion, Viola Davis is the finest actress in movies today.  In “Doubt,” she gave the best performance of the year in one short but very powerful scene as the mother of a boy who may have been abused. […]

Bravo to AMC Theaters for the ‘Sensory Friendly’ Film Series

posted by Nell Minow

I was delighted to hear that AMC theaters is reaching out to family members with autism spectrum issues with monthly “Sensory Friendly” film showings.  Participating theaters are schedules to run the following films at 10 am, with lower sound and […]

Interview: Nadia Costa of ‘Crime After Crime’

posted by Nell Minow

“Crime After Crime” is the story of Deborah Peagler, serving a 25-to live sentence for killing the man who abused her, and the lawyers who fought for her release.  California is the only state to adopt a law that permits the […]

My Visit to the Set of ‘The Help’ — Coming Next Week

posted by Nell Minow

One of the biggest surprise best-sellers of the past ten years is The Help, the first novel by Jackson, Mississippi native Kathryn Stockett.  It is now one of the most eagerly anticipated movies of the year.  The story of the book […]

All My Children and One Life to Live to Continue — On the Web

posted by Nell Minow

ABC is going to license its cancelled soap operas, “One Life to Live” and “All My Children,” to continue on the web!  Prospect Park, co-founded by a former Disney executive, will continue both shows and promises the same length and […]

Horrible Bosses

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for crude and sexual content, pervasive language, and some drug material
Movie Release Date:July 9, 2011
DVD Release Date:October 11, 2011
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for crude and sexual content, pervasive language, and some drug material
Movie Release Date: July 9, 2011
DVD Release Date: October 11, 2011

Three old friends who work for deranged, abusive bosses decide that the only solution is a “Strangers on a Train”-style murder swap in a lightweight comedy sustained by recession-era resentment fantasies, some attention to plot structure, and a bunch of […]

Zookeeper

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some rude and suggestive humor and language
Movie Release Date:July 9, 2011
DVD Release Date:October 11, 2011
D
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some rude and suggestive humor and language
Movie Release Date: July 9, 2011
DVD Release Date: October 11, 2011

This is a movie about how Kevin James can do so much better, but Kevin James can do so much better than this movie.  In the film, he tries to change his life to be worthy of a woman he […]

Great Character Actors: Denis O’Hare

posted by Nell Minow

I love character actors, those utility infielders who have to create a complete character in seconds and hold a scene opposite a superstar.   They’re the ones who always seem vaguely familiar but are so chameleon-like that we never quite […]

Closed Captioning Urged for Online Series

posted by Nell Minow

As more original content is being created for the web, deaf and hard of hearing audiences are urging producers to include closed captions. The Washington Post reports: Last year, President Obama signed into law the 21st Century Communications and Video […]

The Worst Movie Bosses

posted by Nell Minow

This week’s release of “Horrible Bosses” made me think of some of the other terrible bosses in movies.  Here are some of the bosses we love to hate on screen.  Who am I leaving out?  And which movie boss is […]

Contest from Allen Zadoff of My Life in the Theater, and Other Tragedies

posted by Nell Minow

Allen Zadoff‘s terrific new book is My Life, the Theater, and Other Tragedies, about a high school theater techie (he works lights in a production of “Midsummer Night’s Dream”) who likes to stay behind the scenes until he meets a […]

The 5th of July

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:NR
Movie Release Date:1982
DVD Release Date:July 5, 2011
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: NR
Movie Release Date: 1982
DVD Release Date: July 5, 2011

This filmed version of Lanford Wilson’s Fifth of July is a brilliantly acted story of the complicated relationships of a group of friends and relatives who get together over the 4th of July holiday.  It centers around the relationship of Kenneth […]

Gidget (3-Pack)

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Not rated
Movie Release Date:1959
DVD Release Date:July 5, 2011
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Not rated
Movie Release Date: 1959
DVD Release Date: July 5, 2011

A new DVD 3-pack of all three “Gidget” movies comes out today, and they’re worth another look, especially the 1959 original with Sandra Dee and James Darren.  Dee plays Francie, a sheltered and somewhat naive girl who thinks that it […]

Yankee Doodle Dandy

posted by Nell Minow

Happy 4th of July!

posted by Nell Minow

May our celebrations this day remind us to treasure our freedoms, instill gratitude for those who fought for, fight for, and protect them, and inspire us to work for freedom for everyone.  

You’re a Grand Old Flag

posted by Nell Minow

Fireworks

posted by Nell Minow

Katy Perry’s Fireworks for the 4th of July!  

What’s the Deal with All These Tree Titles?

posted by Nell Minow

Last time, it was a bunch of Nine movies.  Now for some reason we have a bunch of movies with “tree” in the title.  Here’s a quick guide to help keep them all straight. Tree of Life is the impressionistic, […]

Awkward Office Photo Competition

posted by Nell Minow

The wildly popular Awkward Family Photos website has a new competition in honor of next week’s release of “Horrible Bosses.”  It’s called Awkward Office Photos.  Take a look and vote for your favorite — and feel better that you don’t […]

The Best Movies of 2011 — So Far

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks to Travis Hopson and John Nolan for including me on their wonderful “Punch Drunk Critics” podcast on Blog Talk Radio. Along with my dear friend Tim Gordon, we had a great discussion of the best — and worst […]

Join Me as a Beliefnet Blogger!

posted by Nell Minow

I’m thrilled to be one of the judges in Beliefnet’s competition to find a new blogger!   I can tell you from experience, being a Beliefnet blogger is a fabulous adventure, so come join me!  I look forward to reading your […]

Year of a Million Moments from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

posted by Nell Minow

Today, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment (TCFHE) pledged to donate one million moments from its catalog of DVDs to community investment partners across the country. The initiative is part of its “Year of a Millions Moments” campaign celebrating movies made […]

She Texted. We Kicked Her Out.

posted by Nell Minow

Hurray for the Alamo Drafthouse movie theater for standing up for the rights of movie-goers by kicking out a woman who was texting in the theater.   The Alamo’s policy is clear.  Since 1997 it has had a strict no-talking policy […]

Previous Posts

Who is Surprised that a Faith-Based Film Beat Zac Efron and Owen Wilson?
The end of August is traditionally one of the year's low points when it comes to Hollywood releases. So it was not surprising that the powerhouse "Straight Outta Compton" lead the box office, far ahead of the two new releases, the Owen ...

posted 5:00:55pm Aug. 31, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Alex Sheremet on Woody Allen (Part 1)
Alex Sheremet is the author of Woody Allen: Reel to Real, an in-depth exploration of the work of one of the most prolific and singular ...

posted 3:33:45pm Aug. 31, 2015 | read full post »

Opening this Week: A Walk in the Woods and Learning to Drive
This week, two movies are based on first-person accounts by writers telling their own real-life stories. In The New Yorker, Katha ...

posted 3:15:50pm Aug. 31, 2015 | read full post »

Tribute: Wes Craven
We mourn the loss of director Wes Craven, who knew what scared us and knew how much we loved being scared.  His series films included "Scream," "Nightmare on Elm Street," and "The Hills Have Eyes." My friend Simon Abrams interviewed Craven for ...

posted 10:53:30am Aug. 31, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Rachel Hendrix of "77 Chances"
Rachel Hendrix plays Mac in the faith-based romantic film "77 Chances." It's a "Groundhog Day"-style story about a young man who feels lost ...

posted 3:39:15pm Aug. 30, 2015 | read full post »

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