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genre

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quality

  • A+, A, A-
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who's watching

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age range

  • Kindergarten - 3rd grade
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Old Yeller

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1957
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1957

Plot: In 1869 Texas, Jim Coates (Fess Parker) says goodbye to his family, as he leaves for three months to sell their cattle. He tells his older son, Travis (Tommy Kirk) to take care of his mother, Katie (Dorothy McGuire) […]

Amadeus

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:PG (theatrical version)
Movie Release Date:1984
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: PG (theatrical version)
Movie Release Date: 1984

Antionio Salieri (F. Murray Abraham in an Oscar-winning performance), the court composer, should have been Mozart. He followed all the rules, worked hard, and cared deeply. Music was his life. Mozart (Tom Hulce) arrives, a bawdy, bratty, foolish boy whose […]

Passion of Mind

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

This is the movie equivalent of a juicy beach book, an old-fashioned guilty pleasure chick flick. The plot is “Sliding Doors” crossed with the fairy tale of the dancing princesses with a touch of “Truly Madly Deeply.” Demi Moore plays […]

Changing Lanes

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2002
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2002

Most thrillers have audiences asking themselves what the characters will do next. This one will have them asking themselves what they might do in this situation, because it is a movie about how close all of us are to abandoning […]

I Know Where I’m Going

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1946
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1946

Plot: As a baby, as a five year old, as a school girl, and as a young woman, Joan Webster (Wendy Hiller) always knows exactly what she wants. And whether it is “real silk stockings” instead of synthetic or dinner […]

Hollywood Ending

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2002
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2002

Woody Allen’s films seem to get whispier and more ephemeral every year. For all its small pleasures “Hollywood Ending” is so light it nearly floats off the screen. Allen plays Val, a movie director who is brilliant but so neurotic […]

All the President’s Men

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:PG
Movie Release Date:1976
DVD Release Date:June 11, 2012
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: PG
Movie Release Date: 1976
DVD Release Date: June 11, 2012

This week is the 40th anniversary of the Watergate break-in and a good time to look at the Oscar-winning movie about the two reporters who would not give up on the story of the Watergate break-in, this is as gripping as […]

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1939
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1939

Plot: Naive Jefferson Smith (Jimmy Stewart) is sent to Washington to serve the remaining term of a Senator who has died. The governor (Guy Kibbee), and businessman Jim Taylor (Edward Arnold) believe that Smith, the leader of a Boy Scouts-type […]

Friendly Persuasion

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1956
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1956

Plot: This is the story of the Birdwells, a loving Quaker family in the midst of the Civil War. Eliza (Dorothy McGuire), a devout woman, is the moral center of the family. Jess (Gary Cooper) is a thoughtful man, not […]

Angel Eyes

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:R
Movie Release Date:2001
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: R
Movie Release Date: 2001

Watch out — they’re trying to sell this movie as a thriller with supernatural overtones, but it turns out that it is a very traditional love story, and a surprisingly touching one, too.Jennifer Lopez plays Sharon, a cop who is […]

Rocky

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:PG
Movie Release Date:1976
DVD Release Date:1977
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: PG
Movie Release Date: 1976
DVD Release Date: 1977

Plot: Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) is a sweet-natured but not very bright boxer and small-time enforcer for a loan-shark. He has a crush on Adrian (Talia Shire), the painfully shy sister of his friend, Pauly (Burt Young). Apollo Creed (Carl […]

The Great Escape

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Not rated
Movie Release Date:1963
DVD Release Date:May 7, 2013
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Not rated
Movie Release Date: 1963
DVD Release Date: May 7, 2013

In honor of the Blu-Ray release of this classic film, it is the Pick of the Week – and I am delighted that I have one Blu-Ray to give away.  Send me an email at moviemom@moviemom.com with Escape in the […]

Lili

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1953
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1953

Plot: Lili (Leslie Caron), a French orphan, is dazzled by a handsome carnival magician named Marcus (Jean Pierre Aumont) when he speaks kindly to her, and she follows him back to the carnival. She gets a job as a waitress […]

My Life as a Dog

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1987
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1987

Plot: Ingemar is a twelve year old boy growing up in 1950s Sweden who goes to live with his aunt and uncle in Smaland while his mother is dying of tuberculosis. In the small town of Smaland he meets an […]

Murder by Numbers

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2002
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2002

In 1924 there was a murder was so shocking that it was called the crime of the century. What was chilling was the motive — not money or passion but a cool arrogance that led two wealthy young men to […]

Local Hero

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1983
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1983

Plot: McIntyre (Peter Reigert) is an ambitious executive with a Knox Oil & Gas, based in Houston, Texas. He is dispatched by Happer (Burt Lancaster), the company’s eccentric billionaire chief executive, to a remote corner of Scotland to acquire a […]

Insomnia

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2002
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2002

Detective Dormer (Al Pacino) can’t sleep. He and his partner, Hap Eckhart (Martin Donovan), are LA cops on special assignment to investigate the brutal murder of a teen-age girl in tiny Nightmute Alaska. Dormer may have been brought in for […]

Guys and Dolls

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1955
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1955

Plot: The story takes place among the small-time underworld characters of New York. Nathan Detroit (Frank Sinatra) runs a “floating crap game” (held in a different place each time) that provides entertainment and bankrolls for many members of the community. […]

The Truman Show

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1998
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1998

Truman Burbank (Jim Carrey) is an insurance salesman who gradually realizes that everyone around him is part of an elaborate “show,” and that every aspect of his life has been orchestrated and broadcast throughout the world. Truman’s “ideal” suburban community […]

The Hurricane

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

Rubin “Hurricane” Carter triumphed over a brutal childhood to become a contender for the middleweight boxing championship, through pure determination. Then, wrongfully sentenced to three life terms for murders he did not commit, he used the same discipline, integrity, and […]

Price of Glory

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

In the 1940’s, this movie would have starred John Garfield and been on the lower half of a double feature. In 2000, it stars Jimmy Smits as the father who pushes his three boys to be championship boxers, because his […]

Fly Away Home

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1996
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1996

Amy, a 13-year-old girl from New Zealand (Anna Paquin), wakes up in a hospital bed after an automobile accident to see her father, Tom (Jeff Daniels), whom she barely knows. Her mother was killed in the crash, and she must […]

Mansfield Park

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

Bodices may not be ripped, but they are certainly loosened in this very liberal adaptation of Jane Austen’s novel. This is not your mother’s “Mansfield Park.” Fans of the book are warned early on that there will be some significant […]

Isn’t She Great

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

Hard to imagine myself saying this, but it would have been better if Jacqueline Susann had written this movie. It would have been dumb and unbelievable and even grotesque, but it would not have been boring. The tag line for […]

Pleasantville

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1998
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1998

In “Dave” and “Big” screenwriter Gary Ross gave us characters whose innocent honesty and goodness revealed and transformed the adult world. Now, as both screenwriter and director of “Pleasantville,” he has created teen-aged twins who are transported into an idyllic […]

Dance With Me

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1998
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1998

Former Miss America Vanessa Williams and Latin Superstar Cheyanne star in this story of a Cuban man who comes to Texas in search of his father and brings a new spirit to the people who work at a run-down dance […]

American Beauty

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:R
Movie Release Date:1999
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: R
Movie Release Date: 1999

Lester Burnham (Kevin Spacey) is a 42-year-old man who has lost touch with anything that made him feel alive. His wife Carolyn (Annette Benning) is a realtor, so highly focused that she is clenched. His daughter Jane (Thora Birch) is […]

One True Thing

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1998
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1998

Based on Anna Quindlen’s novel, this is the story of a young writer who learns the value of her mother when she goes to care for her during her treatment for cancer. Renee Zellweger plays Ellen Gulden, a New York […]

Patch Adams

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1998
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1998

If the real-life Robin Williams were a doctor, he would be the real-life Patch Adams, who believes that doctors should treat the patient, not the disease, and that sick, frightened people need to feel that those who take care of […]

What Dreams May Come

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1998
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1998

Robin Williams plays Chris Nielson, a doctor who arrives in heaven after he is killed by a car as he attempts to help the victims of an accident. His wife, Annie (Anabella Sciorra), already devastated by the loss of their […]

Hanging Up

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

There are movies where the writer and director focus on the emotions of the characters. Then there are movies like this one where they make the mistake of trying to focus on the emotions of the audience, and you can […]

Ever After

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1998
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1998

Drew Barrymore plays Danielle, according to her great-great-great grand- daughter the real inspiration for the story of Cinderella. Just as in the classic fairy tale, Danielle lives with her mean step-mother and step- sisters, after the death of her beloved […]

Anna and the King

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:PG-13
Movie Release Date:1999
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Movie Release Date: 1999

This is the fourth movie version — and the second this year — of the story of Anna Leonowens, brought to Siam in 1864 by King Monghut to teach his children. Anna and the King end up teaching each other […]

Wonder Boys

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

This movie has a lot in common with its main character. Both are shambling and directionless, with a literary gloss and great deal of charm and intelligence. And both need all of that to be forgiven for their many failings. […]

Contact

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1997
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1997

This film, based on the late Carl Sagan’s novel about a young scientist’s efforts to make contact with intelligent life beyond our world provides a sharp contrast in tone to slam-bang shoot-‘em-ups like “Independence Day” and “Men in Black.” Sagan, […]

Good Will Hunting

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1997
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1997

Mature teens will appreciate this story, written by its appealing two stars, of a brilliant young man with a troubled past. Will (Matt Damon), who grew up as an abused foster child in tough South Boston, works as a janitor […]

Life is Beautiful

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1998
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1998

This Oscar-winner for Best Actor and Best Foreign Film is a “fable” is about a father’s love for his wife and son in the midst of the Holocaust. Writer/director Roberto Begnini stars as a Chaplinesque character who charms a beautiful […]

Anywhere But Here

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

Adele (Susan Sarandon), a free-spirited teacher, takes her 14 year old daughter Ann (Natalie Portman) to Los Angeles in a gold-colored Mercedes. Ann resents her mother for taking her away from everything she knows, and she misses her family and […]

Arlington Road

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

This is a very scary movie about a very scary subject — terrorism. Indeed, its release was delayed due to concerns about the sensitivity of the material. Jeff Bridges plays Michael Faraday, a professor who specializes in terrorism, still grieving […]

Snow Falling on Cedars

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

There has never been a movie more literally true to its title — this is indeed a movie with many long, loving scenes of snow falling on cedars. There are also scenes of raindrops plopping in puddles and autumn leaves […]

October Sky

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1999
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1999

This true story of a boy from a small town who dreams of becoming a rocket scientist is one of the best films ever made about the thrill and hard work of science and a great family movie. In 1957 […]

The Man in the Iron Mask

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1998
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1998

It’s more than 20 years since the “all for one and one for all” days and the Three Musketeers and their friend D’Artagnan (Gabriel Byrne) have gone their separate ways. Athos (John Malkovich) is a loving father to his son, […]

Run Lola Run

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

Teenagers with a taste for the offbeat will enjoy this German import about a woman who gets a frantic phone call from her boyfriend and has only 20 minutes to find 100,000 marks (about $60,000), or he will be killed […]

The Insider

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

Jeffrey Wigand (Russell Crowe), a research scientist for a tobacco company, tells “60 Minutes” to reveal that the company is more aware of the addictive properties of nicotine than its executives claimed and in fact manipulated the delivery of nicotine. […]

Erin Brockovich

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

The poster says, “She brought a small town to its feet and a huge company to its knees.” So we know where it’s all going, and just settle back to enjoy the ride. And an enjoyable ride it is, too. […]

The Cider House Rules

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

Homer Wells (Tobey Maguire) reads David Copperfield aloud to his fellow orphans, letting us know that like Copperfield, he will let us decide for ourselves whether he is the hero of his own life. Homer, twice returned by adoptive parents, […]

My Dog Skip

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2000
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2000

This is a good, old-fashioned boy and his dog movie, based on the memoir of Willie Morris, who grew up in 1940’s Mississippi, a small, sleepy town of “ten thousand souls and nothing to do.” It is lyrical and very […]

The Green Mile

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1999
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1999

It’s pretty easy to make a movie where the hero saves the Earth from asteroids or blasts the bad guys into smithereens, because those kinds of battles give us lots of very cool stuff to look at. It’s a lot […]

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1999
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1999

Four couples sort out their romantic entanglements in Shakespeare’s most magical love story. Hermia and Lysander love each other, but her father wants her to marry Demetrius. Demetrius loves Hermia, but is loved by her friend Helena. When Hermia and […]

Boiler Room

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

Seth (Giovanni Ribisi) wants two things very badly. He wants to make a lot of money quickly, and he wants the respect of his father (Ron Rifkin), a federal judge. Seth drops out of college to run a highly profitable […]

Diamonds

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2000
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2000

Kirk Douglas plays Harry, an aging boxer recovering from a stroke, who wants to retreive some lost “magic diamonds” he once hid in Reno. So he sets off in a Thelma and Louise-style vintage convertible with his son (Dan Ackroyd) […]

Splendor in the Grass

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:NR
Movie Release Date:1961
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: NR
Movie Release Date: 1961

In this classic of repressed teenage sexuality, set in the 1920s, Bud (Warren Beatty) and Deanie (Natalie Wood) are high school students who are newly in love and breathless with desire, physical and emotional. Deenie’s parents are unable to give […]

The Quiet Man

posted by Nell Minow
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Not rated
Movie Release Date:1952
DVD Release Date:October 22, 2002
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Not rated
Movie Release Date: 1952
DVD Release Date: October 22, 2002

I grew up in Chicago, a city that really knows how to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. There’s the parade, of course, and every year they dye the Chicago River green. And every year WGN shows The Quiet Man, the unabashed […]

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