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genre

  • Action
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  • Romance
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  • War
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quality

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

who's watching

  • My entire family
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age range

  • Kindergarten - 3rd grade
  • 4th - 6th grade
  • Middle school
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  • Mature High schooler
  • Adult
  • All Ages




Our Family Wedding

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual content and brief strong language
Movie Release Date:March 12, 2010
DVD Release Date:July 13, 2010
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual content and brief strong language
Movie Release Date: March 12, 2010
DVD Release Date: July 13, 2010

As wilted as last weekend’s bridesmaid bouquet, “Our Family Wedding” manages to be offensive to African-Americans, Latinos, women, men, and sentient life forms of any kind. There may be a fine line between perpetuating stereotypes and making fun of them, […]

The Bounty Hunter

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:PG-13 for sexual content including suggestive comments, language, and some violence
Movie Release Date:March 19, 2010
DVD Release Date:July 13, 2010
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sexual content including suggestive comments, language, and some violence
Movie Release Date: March 19, 2010
DVD Release Date: July 13, 2010

Jennifer Aniston is a beautiful and talented woman, but this film had me thinking some very mean thoughts about her, thoughts like, “She is too old for this kind of movie” and “Probably not a good idea to make a […]

Grease: The Singalong Version!

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School

It’s the one that you want! You probably already know the words, but it’s great to see them up on the big screen and it is really fun to sing along. For just one moment, we’re all students at Rydell […]

Remember Me

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violence, sexual content, language and smoking
Movie Release Date:March 12, 2010
DVD Release Date:June 22, 2010
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violence, sexual content, language and smoking
Movie Release Date: March 12, 2010
DVD Release Date: June 22, 2010

Robert Pattinson has gone from brooding, adoring Bella, saving Bella, and trying not to kill anyone in the Twilight movies to “Remember Me,” a J.D. Salinger-esque tale that has him brooding, adoring Ally (played by the vampire-esquely named Emilie de […]

She’s Out of My League

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and sexual content
Movie Release Date:March 12, 2010
DVD Release Date:June 22, 2010
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and sexual content
Movie Release Date: March 12, 2010
DVD Release Date: June 22, 2010

“She’s Out of My League” recognizes that raunchiness is easy, but sweetness is the challenge. Making both parts of the equation work is something of a struggle but this movie comes closer than many. The title says it all, and […]

When in Rome

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some suggestive content
Movie Release Date:January 29, 2010
DVD Release Date:June 15, 2010
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some suggestive content
Movie Release Date: January 29, 2010
DVD Release Date: June 15, 2010

An exceptionally strong cast makes this fantasy romantic comedy trifle pleasantly watchable despite its chick-lit conventions. Kristen Bell is Beth, the (of course) supremely competent museum “curator,” who is so devoted to her work that she has never figured out […]

Harlem Hostel

posted by Nell Minow

“Harlem Hostel” is an unpretentious little film about a group of friends who decide to turn a run-down brownstone into a youth hostel to make ends meet. At times the film looks as low-budget as its setting, but with an […]

DVD Giveaway: One Hot Summer

posted by Nell Minow

Get ready to sizzle with “One Hot Summer,” the story of a beautiful Cuban-American lawyer who is torn between her husband and an old boyfriend as she and her two best friends try to follow their hearts to love and […]

Dear John

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sensuality and violence
Movie Release Date:February 5, 2010
DVD Release Date:May 25, 2010
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sensuality and violence
Movie Release Date: February 5, 2010
DVD Release Date: May 25, 2010

Nicholas Sparks writes the equivalent of comfort food, high-carb, low-nutrition, but sometimes it hits the spot. His stories usually feature relationships that are not just true and deep and loving but healing. And then, like ripping off a band-aid, he […]

Valentine’s Day

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual material and brief partial nudity
Movie Release Date:February 12, 2010
DVD Release Date:May 18, 2010
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual material and brief partial nudity
Movie Release Date: February 12, 2010
DVD Release Date: May 18, 2010

Ladies and gentlemen, let the record show that the Twitter movie has arrived. “Valentine’s Day” consists of a bunch of incidents and concepts and indications that in our omni-media world are taken for stories, though all of them would fit […]

The Adventures of Robin Hood

posted by Nell Minow
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:1938
DVD Release Date:2002
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: 1938
DVD Release Date: 2002

Errol Flynn is the definitive Robin Hood in this glorious Technicolor version of the classic story, one of the most thrillingly entertaining films of all time. King Richard the Lion-Hearted, off fighting in the Crusades, has been captured and held […]

Leap Year

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for sensuality and language
Movie Release Date:January 8, 2010
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for sensuality and language
Movie Release Date: January 8, 2010

A movie’s premise can be implausible and still work. The audience does not have to buy into whatever it is that the hero and heroine are after long as we believe that the movie’s characters believe in it. But in […]

It’s Complicated

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some drug content and sexuality
Movie Release Date:December 25, 2009
DVD Release Date:April 27, 2010
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some drug content and sexuality
Movie Release Date: December 25, 2009
DVD Release Date: April 27, 2010

Forget the accents. Forget the anguish, the steely resolve, the iambic pentameter. All hail Meryl Streep for what she is best at — comedy. She spins screenplay straw into movie gold, turning yet another fungible Nancy Meyers saga about a […]

Play the Game

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date:August 28, 2009
DVD Release Date:April 27, 2010
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date: August 28, 2009
DVD Release Date: April 27, 2010

The players get played in a romantic buddy comedy with one important distinction — one of those players is the resident of an assisted living facility who gets some assistance he was not expecting when a frisky fellow resident slips […]

Crazy Heart

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and brief sexuality
Movie Release Date:January 8, 2010
DVD Release Date:April 20, 2010
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and brief sexuality
Movie Release Date: January 8, 2010
DVD Release Date: April 20, 2010

Jeff Bridges does not portray Bad Blake, a broken-down, once-successful country singer; he inhabits the role, showing us not just what is happening to the man on screen but everything, every success and every failure, every love and every loss […]

The Young Victoria

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild sensuality, a scene of violence, and brief incidental language and smoking
Movie Release Date:December 18, 2009
DVD Release Date:April 20, 2010
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild sensuality, a scene of violence, and brief incidental language and smoking
Movie Release Date: December 18, 2009
DVD Release Date: April 20, 2010

“The Young Victoria” is the story of a teenager who became a queen. Before she reigned for a record 63 years and gave her name to an age, she was a girl who was sheltered to the point of claustrophobia. […]

An Education

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving sexual content, and for smoking
Movie Release Date:October 23, 2009
DVD Release Date:March 30, 2010
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving sexual content, and for smoking
Movie Release Date: October 23, 2009
DVD Release Date: March 30, 2010

Part of the charm of “An Education,” a bittersweet coming of age story based on a brief memoir by Lynn Barber, is how much we know what its main character does not. Jenny (an incandescent Carey Mulligan) is a teenager […]

Did You Hear About the Morgans?

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual references and momentary violence
Movie Release Date:December 18, 2009
DVD Release Date:March 16, 2010
D
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual references and momentary violence
Movie Release Date: December 18, 2009
DVD Release Date: March 16, 2010

I have seldom seen the stars of a movie look as thoroughly uncomfortable as Sarah Jessica Parker and Hugh Grant in this drearily low-concept would-be comedy, “Did You Hear About the Morgans?” Parker plays Meryl Morgan, a Manhattan real estate […]

The Twilight Saga: New Moon

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some violence and action
Movie Release Date:November 20, 2009
DVD Release Date:March 16, 2010
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some violence and action
Movie Release Date: November 20, 2009
DVD Release Date: March 16, 2010

“You’re good with weird,” a character tells Bella mid-way through “The Twilight Saga: New Moon.” That’s an understatement. In the first Twilight movie, as in the first of the series by Stephanie Meyer, high school student Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) […]

Up in the Air

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some sexual content
Movie Release Date:December 4, 2009
DVD Release Date:March 08, 2010
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some sexual content
Movie Release Date: December 4, 2009
DVD Release Date: March 08, 2010

To the list of the biggest lies of all time (“The check is in the mail,” “I’ll still respect you in the morning,” etc.) this must now be added: “All the answers are in your packet.” No, they aren’t. Many […]

What Makes a Movie Romantic?

posted by Nell Minow

Many thanks once again to Cheryl Anderson of the Appleton Post-Crescent for interviewing me, this time about what makes movie romantic. “There are so many movies about love for the same reason there are so many movies about lost treasure […]

The Time Traveler’s Wife

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, brief disturbing images, nudity and sexuality
Movie Release Date:August 14, 2009
DVD Release Date:February 9, 2010
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, brief disturbing images, nudity and sexuality
Movie Release Date: August 14, 2009
DVD Release Date: February 9, 2010

Books and movies are two very different modes of expression. Books tend to be more subjective and internal, focusing on what the author or characters think and feel. Movies are usually better at showing what happens. Even a hugely popular […]

Love Happens

posted by Nell Minow
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some language including sexual references
Movie Release Date:September 18, 2009
DVD Release Date:February 2, 2010
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some language including sexual references
Movie Release Date: September 18, 2009
DVD Release Date: February 2, 2010

Pay attention, class. Jennifer Aniston makes two kinds of movies. When she has her hair tied back, it’s usually an independent film (like last summer’s “Management”) and usually worth watching. But when her hair is loose it’s usually a big, […]

The Invention of Lying

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language including some sexual material and a drug reference
Movie Release Date:October 2, 2009
DVD Release Date:January 19, 2010
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language including some sexual material and a drug reference
Movie Release Date: October 2, 2009
DVD Release Date: January 19, 2010

Ricky Gervais has come up with a fresh and enticing premise but — I have to be honest — it is imperfectly executed. It has the gloss of a romantic comedy because it gives us the fun of knowing that […]

Post Grad

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual situations and brief strong language
Movie Release Date:August 21, 2009
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual situations and brief strong language
Movie Release Date: August 21, 2009

There is not one single thing in this movie that you don’t see or guess from the trailer, but for some audiences that means that it will deliver just what they are looking for. Alexis Bledel plays Ryden, who thinks […]

I Can Do Bad All By Myself

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving a sexual assault on a minor, violence, drug references and smoking
Movie Release Date:September 11, 2009
DVD Release Date:January 12, 2010
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving a sexual assault on a minor, violence, drug references and smoking
Movie Release Date: September 11, 2009
DVD Release Date: January 12, 2010

Tyler Perry’s movies are review-proof. Not just because he does not let critics see them before they are released, knowing that his audience won’t care about reviews, but because they do not lend themselves to the usual kind of analysis. […]

Sherlock Holmes

posted by Nell Minow

Perhaps even the great detective himself could not solve the mystery of why Sherlock Holmes holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for having been portrayed on screen than any other fictional character, with more than 75 actors in […]

500 Days of Summer

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual material and language
Movie Release Date:July 17, 2009
DVD Release Date:December 22, 2009
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual material and language
Movie Release Date: July 17, 2009
DVD Release Date: December 22, 2009

Like its winning hero, this movie wears its heart right on its sleeve. It lays it out for us right at the beginning, making it clear that “this is not a love story.” Oh, and it is a work of […]

A Single Man

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some disturbing images and nudity/sexual content
Movie Release Date:December 11, 2009
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some disturbing images and nudity/sexual content
Movie Release Date: December 11, 2009

Designer Tom Ford has exquisite taste, and his first movie is an exquisite movie. Based on a story by Christopher Isherwood, as adapted by Ford, it is the story of one day in the life of a British literature professor […]

Julie & Julia

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief strong language and some sensuality
Movie Release Date:August 7, 2009
DVD Release Date:December 8, 2009
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief strong language and some sensuality
Movie Release Date: August 7, 2009
DVD Release Date: December 8, 2009

“Julie & Julia” is — I can’t help it — a scrumptiously satisfying film about writer/director Nora Ephron’s two favorite subjects: food and marriage.It is based on two true stories. Julia Child revolutionized American notions about food with her cookbook […]

The Gift Wrapper

posted by Nell Minow

I am delighted that this charming film is available again this year. Enjoy!

A Thanksgiving Treat

posted by Nell Minow

One of my very favorite movies begins with Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the original Miracle on 34th Street. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! Best wishes to you and your families, and please know how grateful I am for the chance to be […]

Four Christmases

posted by Nell Minow
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual humor and language.
Movie Release Date:November 26, 2008
DVD Release Date:November 24, 2009
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual humor and language.
Movie Release Date: November 26, 2008
DVD Release Date: November 24, 2009

The biggest acting achievement in this film is four Oscar winners valiantly managing to hide their embarrassment in appearing in sheer holiday dreck. Its leads are not as successful. Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughn cannot manage to disguise their shame […]

I Love You, Beth Cooper

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, language, some teen drinking and drug references, and brief violence
Movie Release Date:July 10, 2009
DVD Release Date:November 3, 2009
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, language, some teen drinking and drug references, and brief violence
Movie Release Date: July 10, 2009
DVD Release Date: November 3, 2009

Paul Rust is 28, and looks it, maybe a little older. But in “I Love You, Beth Cooper” he plays Denis Cooverman, a high school valedictorian. Jack T. Carpenter, last seen playing a college student in “Sydney White” two years […]

The Proposal

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, nudity and language
Movie Release Date:June 19, 2009
DVD Release Date:October 13, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, nudity and language
Movie Release Date: June 19, 2009
DVD Release Date: October 13, 2009

Think “Taming of the Shrew Wears Prada.” Book editor Margaret (Sandra Bullock) is whip-smart and whippet-thin, ferociously competent, ruthlessly demanding, and just plain scary. When she strides into the office in her spike Christian Louboutin heels, IMs radiate through the […]

My Life in Ruins

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content
Movie Release Date:June 5, 2009
DVD Release Date:October 6, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content
Movie Release Date: June 5, 2009
DVD Release Date: October 6, 2009

Everything that made the adorable “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” so winning is missing from this tired and formulaic sitcom of a movie about an American tour guide in Greece. “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” with writer/star Nia Vardalos, was […]

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:1937
DVD Release Date:2009
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: 1937
DVD Release Date: 2009

Disney’s 70th anniversary release of its first animated feature film on Blu-Ray is gorgeously restored and filled with behind-the-scene extras and a wonderful opportunity to catch up with the one that is still “the fairest of them all.” Snow White […]

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content throughout, some language and a drug reference
Movie Release Date:May 1, 2009
DVD Release Date:September 22, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content throughout, some language and a drug reference
Movie Release Date: May 1, 2009
DVD Release Date: September 22, 2009

“Ghosts of Girlfriends Past” feels like ghosts of movies past, with a been-there, seen-that feeling that goes far beyond its familiar appropriation of the structure of “A Christmas Carol.” It is not as deep as Matthew McConaughey’s dimples. He plays […]

All About Steve

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content including innuendos
Movie Release Date:September 4, 2009
D
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content including innuendos
Movie Release Date: September 4, 2009

Somewhere deep inside this movie, like the little tiny pea in the bed of the princess, is an idea that could have been an interesting movie. Unfortunately, as with that bed of the princess, it is smothered in 20 mattresses […]

Duplicity

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language and some sexual content
Movie Release Date:March 20, 2009
DVD Release Date:August 25, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language and some sexual content
Movie Release Date: March 20, 2009
DVD Release Date: August 25, 2009

What do Egyptian launch codes and a new frozen pizza topping have in common? They’re both secrets that are of value to both those who know it and those who want to know it. Where there are secrets, there must […]

Adventureland

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, drug use and sexual references
Movie Release Date:April 3, 2009
DVD Release Date:August 25, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, drug use and sexual references
Movie Release Date: April 3, 2009
DVD Release Date: August 25, 2009

We all have at least one, a summer when everything changes, when we first start to become the person we truly are. Every writer tries at least once to tell the story of one of these summers and the best […]

Adam

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic material, sexual content and language
Movie Release Date:July 31, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic material, sexual content and language
Movie Release Date: July 31, 2009

Adam (Hugh Dancy), appropriately shares his name with the first man because even though he lives in contemporary Manhattan, he is in a very real way new to the world. He seems at once tightly wound and untethered. When he […]

The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:PG for mild language
Movie Release Date:1998
DVD Release Date:1998
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: PG for mild language
Movie Release Date: 1998
DVD Release Date: 1998

This is a wonderful, magical movie! Based on the short story and play by Ray Bradbury (who adapted for the screen), this is the story of five poor men who pool their resources to buy one magnificent, beautiful, white suit, […]

The Ugly Truth

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date:July 24, 2009
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date: July 24, 2009

There is little chemistry between co-stars Katherine Heigel and Gerard Butler in this charmless war of the sexes story, but there is even less chemistry between the two genres it tries to combine, the romantic comedy (sunny pop song over […]

Confessions of a Shopaholic

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild language and thematic elements
Movie Release Date:February 13, 2009
DVD Release Date:June 23, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild language and thematic elements
Movie Release Date: February 13, 2009
DVD Release Date: June 23, 2009

Even the endlessly talented and infinitely adorable Isla Fisher cannot overcome the script problems in this unfrothy romantic comedy about a writer who just can’t stop shopping. As hard as they try to make her irresistable, the character she plays […]

He’s Just Not That Into You

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content and brief strong language
Movie Release Date:February 6, 2009
DVD Release Date:June 2, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content and brief strong language
Movie Release Date: February 6, 2009
DVD Release Date: June 2, 2009

It turns out that it all goes back to the playground. What did our moms tell us when boys teased us and knocked us down? “He only does it because he likes you!” This leads to two consequences. First, women […]

New In Town

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:PG for language and some suggestive material
Movie Release Date:January 30, 2009
DVD Release Date:May 26, 2009
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: PG for language and some suggestive material
Movie Release Date: January 30, 2009
DVD Release Date: May 26, 2009

Despite the title, there is nothing at all new about this romantic comedy, but it manages to endear itself anyway. Renée Zellweger plays uptight and ambitious Lucy Hill, an ambitious, stiletto heel-wearing executive based in Miami who thinks she can […]

Connie and Carla

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, sexual humor and drug references
Movie Release Date:2004
DVD Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, sexual humor and drug references
Movie Release Date: 2004
DVD Release Date: 2005

Nia Vardalos captivated audiences with the unstoppably successful My Big Fat Greek Wedding and her next film opens up in a few weeks. So it is a good time to take a look at her last film, which never got […]

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief war violence, sexual content, language and smoking
Movie Release Date:December 25, 2008
DVD Release Date:May 12, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief war violence, sexual content, language and smoking
Movie Release Date: December 25, 2008
DVD Release Date: May 12, 2009

Brad Pitt is a very fine actor (see “Twelve Monkeys” and “True Romance”) but in this epic fantasy his diligent and thoughtful performance contributes less to the film than his appearance, about two-thirds of the way through. I mean appearance […]

Last Chance Harvey

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief strong language
Movie Release Date:January 16, 2009
DVD Release Date:May 5, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief strong language
Movie Release Date: January 16, 2009
DVD Release Date: May 5, 2009

It’s wonderful to watch young people falling in love for the first time. That’s why we get to see it so often in the movies. But it is even more wonderful to see people falling in love for the last […]

Yes Man

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude sexual humor, language and brief nudity
Movie Release Date:December 19, 2008
DVD Release Date:April 7, 2009
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude sexual humor, language and brief nudity
Movie Release Date: December 19, 2008
DVD Release Date: April 7, 2009

Carrey-ologists will enjoy poring over the semiotics of “Yes Man,” in one sense a very slight variation of one of Jim Carrey’s biggest hits, 1997’s Liar Liar. In both films, he plays a divorced professional man who has in essence […]

Seven Pounds

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic material, some disturbing content and a scene of sensuality
Movie Release Date:December 19, 2008
DVD Release Date:March 31, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic material, some disturbing content and a scene of sensuality
Movie Release Date: December 19, 2008
DVD Release Date: March 31, 2009

The way you feel about “Seven Pounds” will depend on the way you feel about the choice made by the main character at the end of the film. Some may consider it admirable and selfless but for me the choice, […]

Marley & Me

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:PG
Movie Release Date:December 25, 2008
DVD Release Date:March 31, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: PG
Movie Release Date: December 25, 2008
DVD Release Date: March 31, 2009

Life is messy. And in this movie, that very important lesson is embodied by Marley, affectionately dubbed “the worst dog in the world” by his loving family. Jennifer (Jennifer Aniston) and John (Owen Wilson) Grogan are newlywed newspaper writers who […]

Slumdog Millionaire

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some violence, disturbing images and language
Movie Release Date:November 12, 2008
DVD Release Date:March 31, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some violence, disturbing images and language
Movie Release Date: November 12, 2008
DVD Release Date: March 31, 2009

Like its title character, this film has had highly improbable success, ending up with the Best Picture Oscar for 2008. The title character is Jamal (Dev Patel) a “slumdog” orphan child who grew up in the streets of Mumbai and […]

Twilight

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some violence and a scene of sensuality
Movie Release Date:November 21, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some violence and a scene of sensuality
Movie Release Date: November 21, 2008

It is in no way disrespectful to this movie to say that I enjoyed the audience reaction as much as I enjoyed what was on the screen. In a theater filled with fans who had patiently waited for over an […]

TV First Kisses

posted by Nell Minow

A Valentine for my readers — this YouTube compilation of 10 great first kisses from recent television series, including “The O.C,” “One Tree Hill,” “Veronica Mars,” and “Gilmore Girls.”

Funny Face

posted by Nell Minow
A
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:NR
Movie Release Date:1957
DVD Release Date:2009
A
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: NR
Movie Release Date: 1957
DVD Release Date: 2009

My second DVD pick of the week for Valentine’s Day is the other new Audrey Hepburn release, “Funny Face,” a gorgeous musical set in Paris with Fred Astaire and songs by Gershwin. The title tune, and “How Long Has This […]

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1961
DVD Release Date:January 13, 2009
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1961
DVD Release Date: January 13, 2009

The combination of beautiful new “centennial editions” of two Audrey Hepburn classics and the prospect of Valentine’s Day in just two weeks inspired me to lead off February with two Hepburn DVDs of the week. This week, it’s Breakfast At […]

DC-Area Screening Tickets: New in Town

posted by Nell Minow

I will be hosting a Washington DC-area screening of the new Renee Zellwegger-Harry Connick, Jr. romantic comedy, “New In Town” later this month and have tickets for the first five people to send me an email at moviemom@moviemom.com

Ghost Town

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some strong language, sexual humor and drug references
Movie Release Date:September 19, 2008
DVD Release Date:December 30, 208
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some strong language, sexual humor and drug references
Movie Release Date: September 19, 2008
DVD Release Date: December 30, 208

Bertram Pincus, D.D.S. sees dead people. And he’s very crabby about it. Bertram (Ricky Gervais, creator and star of the original British version of “The Office”) doesn’t much like any kind of people, living or dead. He likes being a […]

Love Actually

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexuality, nudity and language
Movie Release Date:2003
DVD Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexuality, nudity and language
Movie Release Date: 2003
DVD Release Date: 2004

“Love Actually” is as stuffed with goodies as the Christmas stockings for those at the very top of Santa’s “nice” list — and it is just as entertaining, too. You say you like romantic comedies with gorgeous stars, witty dialogue […]

Mamma Mia!

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sex-related comments.
Movie Release Date:July 18, 2008
DVD Release Date:December 16, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sex-related comments.
Movie Release Date: July 18, 2008
DVD Release Date: December 16, 2008

Go ahead, admit it. We won’t judge you. You, in the car, with the Ramones t-shirt, singing along to “Fernando” when it comes on the radio. And you, in the shower, singing “Dancing Queen” into the shampoo bottle. You, over […]

Remember the Night

posted by Nell Minow

Preston Sturges wrote and directed some of Hollywood’s greatest comedies, specializing in wickedly sharp satires like “The Lady Eve” and “Miracle of Morgan’s Creek.” But the first of his screenplays to be produced was this bittersweet Christmas romance about a […]

Wall•E

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:June 27, 2008
DVD Release Date:November 18, 2008
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: June 27, 2008
DVD Release Date: November 18, 2008

700 years after the last humans left the planet they had made uninhabitable through environmental degradation, one small robot is still continuing to crunch the mountains of trash. He is a Waste Allocation Load-Lifter Earth-Class, or Wall•E. His eyes are […]

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature material and sensuality.
Movie Release Date:August 8, 2008
DVD Release Date:November 18, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature material and sensuality.
Movie Release Date: August 8, 2008
DVD Release Date: November 18, 2008

When the first five minutes of a film show us a wedding, a graduation, a pregnancy, some kisses, and two grave sites, followed by a reunion scene involving shrieking and hugging, we know we are in for an irresistible saga […]

The Perfect Holiday

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:PG for language and some suggestive humor.
Movie Release Date:December 12, 2007
DVD Release Date:November 11, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: PG for language and some suggestive humor.
Movie Release Date: December 12, 2007
DVD Release Date: November 11, 2008

This sugarplum of a movie is held together with good intentions and paperclips, but its appealing cast and seasonal sweetness make it — if not the perfect holiday treat, a pleasantly enjoyable one, especially welcome because there are so few […]

Meet Me in St. Louis

posted by Nell Minow
A
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:1944
DVD Release Date:2000
A
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: 1944
DVD Release Date: 2000

This episodic story of the Smith family in the St. Louis of 1903 is based on the memoirs of Sally Benson.  Its pleasures are in the period detail, the glorious songs (including standards “The Trolley Song” and “Have Yourself a […]

High School Musical

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

This week, as the powerhouse franchise that is known as “HSM” moves from television to CD (top-seller of the year), DVD, stage show, video game, ice show, birthday party decoration theme, and now feature film theatrical release, it’s time to […]

Sleeping Beauty

posted by Nell Minow
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:1958
DVD Release Date:October 7, 2014
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: 1958
DVD Release Date: October 7, 2014

Disney’s gorgeous “Sleeping Beauty” is out in a magnificent new Diamond edition this week. This classic should be in the library of every family and every animation fan. The King and Queen happily celebrate the birth of their daughter, Princess […]

Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist

posted by Nell Minow

There is no question that Nick (Michael Cera) and Norah (Kat Dennings) are destined for True Love. For one thing, they have the same taste in music. Nick is still making mixes for the girl who dumped him (Alexis Dziena […]

Forgetting Sarah Marshall

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, language and some graphic nudity.
Movie Release Date:April 21, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, language and some graphic nudity.
Movie Release Date: April 21, 2008

“How I Met Your Mother’s” Jason Segal wrote and stars in the latest from the Apatow atelier, another raunchy comedy with a tender heart, and once again the story of a childish and helpless man who is perpetually longing for […]

Nights in Rodanthe

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:September 26, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: September 26, 2008

Of course Richard Gere is going to fall in love with Diane Lane in this movie. How could he resist her and why would he try? Certainly the audience will fall in love with her, too. There is no actress […]

Sex and the City

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong sexual content, graphic nudity and language
Movie Release Date:May 30, 2008
DVD Release Date:September 23, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong sexual content, graphic nudity and language
Movie Release Date: May 30, 2008
DVD Release Date: September 23, 2008

No spoiler alert is required before disclosing that the very appropriate and deeply satisfying fade-out at the end of this film has its four heroines happily going off into the metaphorical sunset….with each other. That is the great love story […]

Made of Honor

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date:May 2, 2008
DVD Release Date:September 16, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date: May 2, 2008
DVD Release Date: September 16, 2008

“Made of Honor” has gloss and bounce and some of the core elements of a mainstream chick flick/date movie. Sexiest Man Alive runner-up in lead role? Yep, Dr. McDreamy himself. I’ve been a Patrick Dempsey fan since he did the […]

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some partial nudity and innuendo.
Movie Release Date:March 7, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some partial nudity and innuendo.
Movie Release Date: March 7, 2008

A delicious retro romp about a failed nanny who finds her true calling when she transforms the life of a flighty singer, this film is designed around two fabulously entertaining stars, Frances McDormand and Amy Adams. McDormand is Miss Pettigrew, […]

What Happens in Vegas…

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual and crude content, and language,including a drug reference.
Movie Release Date:May 9, 2008
DVD Release Date:August 26, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual and crude content, and language,including a drug reference.
Movie Release Date: May 9, 2008
DVD Release Date: August 26, 2008

A romantic comedy needs to get us on the side of its couple as individuals and on the side of romance. This one fails by giving us characters so crude and unlikeable that even the star wattage of Cameron Diaz […]

List: the Hendricks’ Top Relationship Movies

posted by Nell Minow

Authors and consultants Kathlyn and Gay Hendricks (Conscious Loving, Attracting Genuine Love, Five Wishes, and The Corporate Mystic) teach seminars in conscious relationships and “bodymind vibrance.” They have complied a list of their top relationship movies, movies that combine “artistic […]

Wall?E’s Favorite Movie: Hello Dolly

posted by Nell Minow

Wall∙E’s curiosity about the world and capacity to feel loneliness is part of what makes him such a vivid character in Pixar’s latest hit. And nothing in the film conveys those qualities more effectively than his affection for the 1969 […]

Definitely, Maybe

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, including some frank dialogue, language and smoking.
Movie Release Date:February 14, 2008
DVD Release Date:June 24, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, including some frank dialogue, language and smoking.
Movie Release Date: February 14, 2008
DVD Release Date: June 24, 2008

“Definitely, Maybe” is the story of the three great loves of a man’s life. That’s “story” in the literal sense, as in the bedtime story he tells his young daughter, who wants to know how he met her mother and, […]

Fool’s Gold

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for action violence, some sexual material, brief nudity and language
Movie Release Date:February 8, 2008
DVD Release Date:June 17, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for action violence, some sexual material, brief nudity and language
Movie Release Date: February 8, 2008
DVD Release Date: June 17, 2008

An adventure-romance-comedy about a just-divorced couple who join forces in pursuit of sunken treasure reunited Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey of How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. Despite the considerable — and well-displayed — charms of its stars, […]

The Other Boleyn Girl

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements, sexual content and some violent images
Movie Release Date:February 29. 2008
DVD Release Date:June 10, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements, sexual content and some violent images
Movie Release Date: February 29. 2008
DVD Release Date: June 10, 2008

Take away the sumptuous settings and Hollywood glamour and what you have here is like Henry VIII for Dummies enacted by the cast of the OC. Natalie Portman plays Anne Boleyn, who became the second of Henry VIII’s six wives […]

P.S. I Love You

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual references and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date:December 21, 2007
DVD Release Date:May 7, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual references and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date: December 21, 2007
DVD Release Date: May 7, 2008

Hillary Swank does not have the chin for romance or the rhythm for comedy. Her two Oscars were for earnest, androgynous roles (“Boys Don’t Cry” and “Million Dollar Baby”) that made the most of her strong jaw and lanky figure. […]

Smart People

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, brief teen drug and alcohol use, and for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:April 11, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, brief teen drug and alcohol use, and for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: April 11, 2008

A burned-out literature professor named Lawrence Wetherhold (Dennis Quaid) has written an “unpublishable” book called The Price of Postmodernism: Epistemology, Hermeneutics and the Literary Canon. Of course it is unpublishable. Everyone knows that the part of the title that comes […]

Enchanted

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some scary images and mild innuendo
Movie Release Date:November 21, 2007
DVD Release Date:March 18, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some scary images and mild innuendo
Movie Release Date: November 21, 2007
DVD Release Date: March 18, 2008

Fairy tales and modern-day Manhattan find a way to live happily ever after in this adorable Disney story about the adventures of a prince, an almost-princess, and an evil queen in New York City.

Arranged

posted by Nell Minow
B
DVD Release Date:March 11, 2008
B
DVD Release Date: March 11, 2008

This quiet little independent film is the story of the friendship between two New York City schoolteachers, an Orthodox Jew and a Muslim, who transcend the assumptions of those around them. They quickly realize that they have more in common […]

Dan in Real Life

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some innuendo.
Movie Release Date:October 26, 2007
DVD Release Date:March 11, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some innuendo.
Movie Release Date: October 26, 2007
DVD Release Date: March 11, 2008

No one is better than Steve Carell at playing clenched. In “Dan in Real Life,” he plays a character so clenched he just about levitates off the ground. Dan is an advice columnist and a single parent. He cares for […]

Penelope

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for thematic elements, some innuendo and language.
Movie Release Date:February 29, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for thematic elements, some innuendo and language.
Movie Release Date: February 29, 2008

This off-beat and uneven fairy tale has something in common with its heroine — an uncertain incongruity. That heroine is Penelope (Christina Ricci), an educated, wealthy young woman with a loving heart and the nose of a pig. More of […]

List: Movies to Share with Your Valentine

posted by Nell Minow

In 2008, I did a Valentine’s Day tribute to great movie couples, from Mickey and Minnie to The Princess Bride and with suggestions for all ages. Here’s a list of five of my all-time favorite falling-in-love (or realizing you’re in […]

Short: A Valentine’s Day Romance in Reverse

posted by Nell Minow

Thanks to SlateV for sharing this charming short film about finding the only person in the world who sees things just the way you do:

No Reservations

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:July 27, 2007
DVD Release Date:February 12, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: July 27, 2007
DVD Release Date: February 12, 2008

It may be a three-star movie about a four-star chef, but it is still a sweet summer treat and a great date night hors d’oeuvre. Kate (Catherine Zeta Jones) just does not understand what everyone’s problem is. All she wants […]

Across the Universe

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some drug content, nudity, sexuality, violence and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:February 5, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some drug content, nudity, sexuality, violence and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: February 5, 2008

On the list of movies featuring Beatles songs, this one comes far below A Hard Day’s Night, Yellow Submarine, Let It Be, and Help but slightly above Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, maybe somewhere around Magical Mystery Tour. Director […]

Over Her Dead Body

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language.

This movie starts out badly, gets much worse, and then after it is just dull for a while, it veers off into a whole new category of awful. Stay away. The premise is promising. How do we know? Because it […]

Sydney White

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:PG-13
Movie Release Date:September 21, 2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Movie Release Date: September 21, 2007

This updated fairy tale has some clever riffs on “Snow White” but never makes use of the considerable talents of its star, Amanda Bynes. Sydney (Bynes) is a college freshman who wants to join Kappa, the most exclusive sorority on […]

27 Dresses

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language, some innuendo and sexuality.
Movie Release Date:January 18, 2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language, some innuendo and sexuality.
Movie Release Date: January 18, 2007

Jane has a special closet in her apartment filled with 27 dresses so ugly that only two things can be true: (1) they were all bridesmaid’s dresses, and that means (2) all 27 brides assured her that they could be […]

Good Luck Chuck

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sequences of strong sexual content including crude dialogue, nudity, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:January 15, 2008
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sequences of strong sexual content including crude dialogue, nudity, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: January 15, 2008

At age 10, following an awkward Spin the Bottle encounter, a little goth girl puts a hex on Charlie so that he will be surrounded by love but never find it himself. But it is the audience who will feel […]

Stardust

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some fantasy violence and risque humor.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:December 18, 2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some fantasy violence and risque humor.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: December 18, 2007

This is an enchanting story that lives up to the promise of a “once upon a time beginning,” filled with romance, adventure, magic, and wit. It has witch sisters who need to find a fallen star to make the potion […]

Atonement

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for disturbing war images, language and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:December 7, 2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for disturbing war images, language and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: December 7, 2007

Little toy jungle animals are lined up on the rug. Typewriter keys bang like gunshots. Briony (Saoirse Ronan) is writing a play called “The Trials of Arabella.” It is 1935 England, a dream of a summer afternoon on a sleepy […]

Love in the Time of Cholera

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content/nudity and brief language
Movie Release Date:November 16, 2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content/nudity and brief language
Movie Release Date: November 16, 2007

In the most incongruous mismatch of literature and movie treatment since Demi Moore flounced around in “The Scarlet Letter,” director Mike Newell has taken a lyrical meditation on love, patience, devotion, loss, betrayal, and fever and turned it into a […]

The Jane Austen Book Club

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, brief strong language and some drug use
Movie Release Date:October 4, 2007
DVD Release Date:2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, brief strong language and some drug use
Movie Release Date: October 4, 2007
DVD Release Date: 2008

I’m pretty sure that Jane Austen never thought of including a lesbian jumping out of an airplane in any of her books, and yet somehow that scene fits in just fine in this story of six people who get together […]

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry

posted by jmiller

There are none so straight as those who pretend to be gay. That seems to be the premise of Adam Sandler’s latest slacker comedy. But its mild pleasures are spoiled by its belief that homophobic humor can be somehow sanitized […]

License to Wed

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual humor and language.

The best thing about “License to Wed” is that John Krasinski and Mandy Moore have enough of that ever-elusive quality — chemistry — that an impending marriage seems possible if not likely. They easily get us on their side. The […]

Georgia Rule

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content and some language.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Minow rule: If Hector Elizondo barely makes an appearance in a Garry Marshall film, watch out. Or, I should say, don’t watch. Marshall wisely does his best to include the talented Elizondo in every one of his films. If the […]

Fast Track

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief language and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief language and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Painfully overlong at under 90 minutes, “The Ex” (formerly known as “Fast Track”) is a clunky, lead-footed disaster, the stunning incompetence of its script and direction only exceeded by the shocking array of talented and successful performers who struggle in […]

Knocked Up

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content, drug use and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, drug use and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Here’s the secret for making a raunchy comedy work — it has to be sweet and even a little bit romantic. What the makers of films like American Pie and The 40-Year-Old Virgin understood is that the “oh, no, they […]

In the Land of Women

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, thematic elements and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, thematic elements and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

If you’ve see the ads with vulnerable cutie Adam Brody from “The O.C.” kissing willowy cutie Kristen Stewart (the kid in Panic Room and growing up very nicely), you probably think it must be a romantic comedy. That’s what they […]

Disturbia

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 on appeal for sequences of terror and violence, and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 on appeal for sequences of terror and violence, and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

This nicely nifty little thriller takes Hitchcock’s classic Rear Window and updates it to the era of cell phones and webcams. Kale (Shia LeBeouf) is under house arrest for hitting a teacher. For three months, he has to wear an […]

Blades of Glory

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language, a comic violent image and some drug references.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language, a comic violent image and some drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Will Ferrell seems to be working his way through every sport ever covered on ESPN. With figure skating, he has found a target-rich environment for comedy. The collision of sport and showbiz is nowhere more intense than in an Olympic […]

Away From Her

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some strong language.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some strong language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Parents should know that this is a very sad movie with themes that may be disturbing to some audience members. Characters use brief strong language. Families who see this movie should talk about some of their own stories about losing […]

I Think I Love My Wife

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Chris Rock has often said he admires the work of Woody Allen, and in Rock’s latest film, “I Think I Love My Wife,” the comedian tries to channel a very “Allen” vibe. Like Allen, he writes, directs, and stars. And […]

Norbit

posted by jmiller
F
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, some nudity and language. (edited for re-rating)
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, some nudity and language. (edited for re-rating)
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Eddie Murphy has taken his love for playing multiple roles, his love for Jerry Lewis (who also loved playing multiple roles), his love for racial humor, his love for crude humor, his love for himself, and — to be charitable […]

Music & Lyrics

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Comedy that is actually funny plus romance that is actually sweet equals a sunny little valentine to brighten the winter doldrums. And — I can’t help saying it — Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore go together like music and lyrics. […]

Black Snake Moan

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong sexual content, language, some violence and drug use.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong sexual content, language, some violence and drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Things are not going well for Lazarus (Samuel L. Jackson). He has been living a life right out of a blues song. His wife left him. For his brother. And now, he has found an almost-naked young woman, badly beaten, […]

Because I Said So

posted by jmiller
F
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content including dialogue, some mature thematic material and partial nudity.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content including dialogue, some mature thematic material and partial nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

I blame “Sex and the City.” Now everyone thinks that what it takes — or all it takes — for a story about a bunch of women characters to work is non-stop talk about sex and shoes and a complete […]

Blood and Chocolate

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violence/terror, some sexuality and substance abuse.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violence/terror, some sexuality and substance abuse.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

There was enthusiastic applause in the theater when the name of author Annette Curtis Klause appeared in the opening credits. The book, about a teenage girl in Maryland whose werewolf issues serve as a metaphor for the sometimes-disturbing forces in […]

Catch and Release

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

For the first time, screenwriter Susannah Grant not only writes but directs with this messy romantic weepie about a woman whose fiance is killed just before the wedding. Grant is known for writing movies with strong female characters, from Disney’s […]

The Holiday

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content and some strong language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content and some strong language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Amanda (Cameron Diaz) has a successful business cutting up new Hollywood releases into three-minute trailers that make the films look as enticing as possible. Writer-director Nancy Meyers essentially cuts up classic romantic comedies and reassembles them for modern consumption. The […]

Deja Vu

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and terror, disturbing images and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and terror, disturbing images and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

A heart-pounding thriller with a time-travel twist, “Deja Vu” will not leave you thinking you’ve seen it all before. Denzel Washington plays Doug Carlin, an ATF agent called in to investigate a bombing. Someone, perhaps a terrorist, has blown up […]

A Good Year

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Plonk is a Britishism for cheap, low-quality wine — not undrinkable, by any means, just nothing special. As much could be said for this film, lightly based on the helium-weight plonk of a best-seller by Peter Mayle. Some movies begin […]

Stranger Than Fiction

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some disturbing images, sexuality, brief language and nudity.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some disturbing images, sexuality, brief language and nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Who among us has not leaned into the bathroom mirror as we brushed our teeth, thinking about what a narrator might be saying about us if we were in a story? “Our hero prepared for battle as though he was […]

Man of the Year

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language including some crude sexual references, drug related material, and brief violence.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language including some crude sexual references, drug related material, and brief violence.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

So, what if Jon Stewart or Stephen Colbert decided to run for President? First of all, didn’t we already see that movie, when it was called Head of State and starred Chris Rock? (Okay, he didn’t play a comedian, but […]

The Science of Sleep

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, some sexual content and nudity.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, some sexual content and nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Stephane (Gael Garcia Bernal of The Motorcycle Diaries) lives across the hall from Stephanie (Charlotte Gainsbourg), though for some reason he goes to elaborate lengths to have her think he lives on the other side of town. They share more […]

Flyboys

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for war action violence and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for war action violence and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Has this script been in a drawer somewhere since 1942? It sure seems like it. It’s “inspired” by the absorbing true story of Americans who enlisted with the French armed forces in World War I, flying aircraft that were more […]

The Last Kiss

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexuality, nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexuality, nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

A man tells his pregnant girlfriend he will marry her when she can name three couples who have been happy together for more than five years. She offers her parents and “that cute couple from the pond.” He reminds her […]

Idlewild

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violence, sexuality, nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violence, sexuality, nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Percival, a mortician by day/speakeasy piano player by night, sleeps under an assortment of singing cuckoo clocks and serenades a lovely corpse dressed as a bride. The engraved rooster on a silver liquor flask talks to its owner, also named […]

The Illusionist

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexuality and violence.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexuality and violence.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

This feels like a fairy tale, so I will begin: “Once upon a time…” …there was a princess who loved a commoner but was engaged to a cruel prince. The commoner and the princess played together as children, but when […]

Step Up

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, brief violence and innuendo.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, brief violence and innuendo.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

A ballet dancer needs a partner for the biggest show of the year. She sees a boy working off his community service time at her school showing some of his dance moves off to a friend. Could he do? Will […]

My Super Ex-Girlfriend

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, crude humor, language and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, crude humor, language and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Even with a face contorted with rage and vengeance and a voice echoing through the streets of New York as well as the theater, it’s difficult not to like Uma Thurman as the needy, controlling and manipulative Jenny Johnson/G-girl. The […]

You, Me and Dupree

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief nudity, crude humor, language and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief nudity, crude humor, language and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Remember the classic comedy The Odd Couple? This is sort of the same movie, only it’s the odd triple and it isn’t very funny. Adorable newlyweds Molly (Kate Hudson) and Carl (Matt Dillon) are just back from their honeymoon when […]

The Lake House

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some language and a disturbing image.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some language and a disturbing image.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

In honor of Sandra Bullock’s best all-time movie opening with “The Proposal,” this week’s DVD pick is another Bullock favorite. Movie romances must have two things: an obstacle to keep the apart and a reason to root for them to […]

The Break-Up

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, some nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, some nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Someone should file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission about false advertising for this film. The trailer and the ads indicate that it is a romantic comedy. But it is, in fact, neither romantic nor a comedy; it’s more […]

She’s the Man

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual material
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual material
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It worked for Shakespeare, so why not for Amanda Bynes? Shakespeare had female characters pretending to be male because they were all played by men anyway. While his prodigious heart and brain certainly understood the rich and delightful narrative and […]

Madea’s Family Reunion

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, domestic violence, sex and drug references.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, domestic violence, sex and drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

As the Borg say on “Star Trek,” “Resistance is futile.” Don’t even try to get in the way of Madea, that pistol-packing, Bible-thumping, larger than life powerhouse and force for good creation of Tyler Perry, who also plays the part. […]

Failure to Launch

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, partial nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, partial nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Trip (Matthew McConaughey) is a 35-year-old boat broker who happily resides in an assisted living facility where he is served fresh pancakes and bacon with warmed syrup and all of his clothes are cleaned, neatly folded, and placed on his […]

Date Movie

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for continuous crude and sexual humor, including language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for continuous crude and sexual humor, including language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

I counted references to 23 movies in this 80-minute film, not including Girls Gone Wild and “The Bachelor,” or about one every three and a half minutes. Throw in a couple of songs and a dozen or so celebrity shout-outs […]

Aquamarine

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild language and sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild language and sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

The best thing about this fairy tale is that its happily-ever-after ending is satisfyingly real world. It’s the most enchanting treat for girls since The Princess Diaries. It’s less of a fairy tale than a fish tale, at least half […]

Imagine Me & You

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some language and sexual material.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some language and sexual material.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Love at first sight can be thrilling, but it can very very inconvenient when it happens to a bride who is walking down the aisle at the time. Especially if the loved-at-first-sight object of affection is another woman. Rachel (Piper […]

Something New

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual references.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual references.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

They are so afraid we won’t get the point that this movie has our heroine literally letting down her hair, literally putting some color into her beige world, and — in case we still don’t get it — literally having […]

The New World

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some intense battle sequences.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some intense battle sequences.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It is beautiful to look at. Director Terrence Malick knows how to create images of stunning beauty and power. Those images are especially compelling in this story of Captain John Smith and the because they show us what it was […]

Tristan + Isolde

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense battle sequences and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense battle sequences and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Tristan and Isolde have suffered enough. This movie feels like overkill. Oh, their legend will survive. But this classic comics-style perfume commercial of a re-telling will not. The ampersand is a giveaway. “And” isn’t good enough? An ampersand is, what, […]

Match Point

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

In Stardust Memories, Woody Allen’s character refers to his mother’s cooking as putting food through the “deflavorizing machine.” His latest movie feels as though he has taken his complex and powerful Crimes and Misdemeanors abd put it through a deflavorizing […]

The Family Stone

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual content including dialogue, and drug references.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual content including dialogue, and drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

If you believe the previews or have seen the poster of an aggressively extended and bejeweled ring finger, then you might presume that “The Family Stone” is going to be a light-hearted romp of a comedy. Boy brings home uptight […]

Rumor Has It

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, crude humor and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, crude humor and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

In the savage satire The Player, actor/screenwriter Buck Henry makes a hilarious pitch for a sequel to The Graduate, something of a savage satire itself, though cloaked in the garb of a romantic fantasy of rebellion and authenticity. The thing […]

Brokeback Mountain

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexuality, nudity, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexuality, nudity, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

Director Ang Lee is a master of repressed love whether between young Taiwanese men in The Wedding Banquet, Jane Austen’s class-conscious Brits in Sense & Sensibility, duty-bound warriors in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, or even monsters and scientists in The […]

King Kong

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for frightening adventure violence and some disturbing images.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for frightening adventure violence and some disturbing images.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

This is not just one of the most thrilling action movies ever made – it is more like five or six of the most thrilling action movies ever made. It is not quite twice as long as the usual movie, […]

Casanova

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some sexual content
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some sexual content
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

Mistake number one may be the title. There may be times in history when it is possible to have an appealing lead character whose primary interest in life is women, but this doesn’t seem to be it. For centuries, people […]

Rent

posted by jmiller

When thinking about a Tony- and Pulitzer-prize winning musical based on an opera, an almost-entirely-sung story about homeless artists, some of them drug addicts, some infected with the AIDS virus, the director of Mrs. Doubtfire is not the first thought […]

Alex and Emma

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:PG-13
Movie Release Date:2003
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Movie Release Date: 2003

Kate Hudson is so irresistibly charming that it is easy to forget how tepid and uninspired this movie is. It is always a delight to see Hudson’s saucer-eyed smile and impeccable timing, but it would be just as entertaining to […]

Bruce Almighty

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language, sexual content and some crude humor
Movie Release Date:2003
DVD Release Date:2003
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language, sexual content and some crude humor
Movie Release Date: 2003
DVD Release Date: 2003

You could not ask for a better showcase for what Jim Carrey does best than this comedy about a man who is given all of God’s powers and has no compunction about using them for cheap thrills and petty payback. […]

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 […]

Hello, Dolly!

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1969
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1969

Plot: Dolly Levi (Barbra Streisand) is a matchmaker in turn of the century Yonkers, outside of New York. She is hired by Horace Vandergelder (Walter Matthau) to find him a wife. He also hires her to take his niece Ermengarde […]

Lady and the Tramp

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:NR
Movie Release Date:1955
DVD Release Date:February 6, 2012
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: NR
Movie Release Date: 1955
DVD Release Date: February 6, 2012

Perfectly timed for Valentine’s Day, Disney’s romantic animated classic “Lady and the Tramp” is out this week for the first time in a Diamond DBD/Blu-Ray combo. Lady is the pampered cocker spaniel of a couple she knows as “Jim Dear” […]

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1954
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1954

Plot: Handsome backwoodsman Adam Pontabee (Howard Keel) strides into town, singing “Bless Your Beautiful Hide” to his future wife “whoever she may be.” He has given himself one day to find a wife to take back to his ranch. He […]

The Court Jester

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:NR
Movie Release Date:1956
DVD Release Date:1999
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: NR
Movie Release Date: 1956
DVD Release Date: 1999

“Life could not better be” than the pure cinematic joy of this movie from the first frame to the last.  Danny Kaye has his best role as Hawkins, a follower of the Black Fox, a Robin Hood- style rebel who […]

The Music Man

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1962
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1962

“Professor” Harold Hill (Robert Preston) is a con man posing as a salesman of band instruments and uniforms. He happens upon River City, a small town in Iowa. As the citizens explain in song, Iowa is a place of stubborn […]

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 […]

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 […]

Ninotchka

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1939
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1939

Plot: Three Soviet bureaucrats arrive in Paris to sell some jewels so they can buy tractors. But the former Grand Duchess Swana (Ina Claire), who lives in Paris, is outraged, because they were her jewels confiscated during the Russian revolution. […]

Spider-Man

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for stylized violence and action
Movie Release Date:2002
DVD Release Date:2002
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for stylized violence and action
Movie Release Date: 2002
DVD Release Date: 2002

Remember when “Superman” was released with the tagline, “You will believe a man can fly?” Well, “Spider-Man” will not only make you believe that a teenager can swing from the skyscrapers; it will almost make you believe that you are […]

Quiet Man

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1952
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1952

Plot: Tall American Sean Thornton (John Wayne) arrives in Innisfree, a small, beautiful Irish village and meets Michaeleen Flynn (Barry Fitzgerald), who drives him into town. Something of a busybody, Michaeleen is very curious, and is delighted to find that […]

Major Barbara

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1941
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1941

Plot: Major Barbara (Wendy Hiller) is a member of a mission devoted to saving souls, and she promotes temperance, non-violence, and socialism. Adolphus Cusins (Rex Harrison), a classics professor, falls in love with her, but before she accepts his proposal, […]

The Little Mermaid

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1989
DVD Release Date:September 30, 2013
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1989
DVD Release Date: September 30, 2013

After some lackluster years, Disney came back into the top rank of animated features with this superbly entertaining musical, based loosely on the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen (but with a happier ending). Ariel was the first in a […]

A Room With a View

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1986
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1986

Plot: Lucy Honeychurch (Helena Bonham Carter) arrives in Italy with her strait-laced aunt Charlotte (Maggie Smith). Disappointed at not getting the room with a view they had been promised when making their reservations at the inn, they are not sure […]

Houseboat

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1958
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1958

Plot: Diplomat Tom Winston (Cary Grant) returns to Washington, D.C. following the death of his estranged wife. His three children, David, Robert, and Elizabeth, have been staying with his wife’s sister, Caroline (Martha Hyer). They are hurt and resentful. He […]

Love and Basketball

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexuality and language
Movie Release Date:2000
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexuality and language
Movie Release Date: 2000

About eighty percent love and twenty percent basketball, this is a romance about two basketball-loving kids who go one-on-one in both games for almost twenty years before they get it right. The movie is divided into quarters, like a basketball […]

Holiday

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1938
DVD Release Date:2006
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1938
DVD Release Date: 2006

After a whirlwind romance at a ski resort, Johnny Case (Cary Grant) is on his way to meet his new fiancée, Julia Seton (Doris Nolan). Overwhelmed by the mansion at the address she gave him, he assumes she must be […]

I Love You Again

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1940
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1940

Prissy, stingy Larry Wilson (William Powell) bores everyone aboard ship on his way back to the United States from a business trip. When Ryan, a fellow passenger, falls overboard, Larry is accidentally knocked overboard trying to save him. Hit on […]

Singin’ in the Rain

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:1952
DVD Release Date:July 16, 2012
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: 1952
DVD Release Date: July 16, 2012

The 60th anniversary of one of the best-loved movies of all time is being celebrated with gorgeous new DVD and Blu-Ray releases. Silent movie star Don Lockwood (Gene Kelly) is paired on screen with Lina Lamont (Jean Hagan), who would […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

The Enchanted Cottage

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1944
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1944

For Valentine’s Day, try this romantic classic. Mrs. Minnett (Mildred Natwick), a widow, owns a small cottage that she rents out to honeymoon couples. Some people believe there is a magic about the house that keeps the couples safe and […]

Down to You

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

Teenagers, especially teenage girls, may want to see this movie, a romantic comedy staring teen dreams Freddie Prinze, Jr. and Julia Styles. Parents need to know that it contains material that they may consider inappropriate, including several explicit sexual references […]

City of Angels

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

The German film “Wings of Desire”, Wim Wenders’ dreamlike meditation on the angels among us, has been Hollywoodized into a dreamlike but glossy romance between an angel named Seth (Nicolas Cage) and a surgeon named Maggie (Meg Ryan). According to […]

Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo

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

Viewers will know exactly what they’re in for when the opening credits reveal the production company: Happy Madison. Anyone who recognizes that name as a tribute to two Adam Sandler movies will enjoy this genial but raunchy story of a […]

She’s All That

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

Get ready. The success of movies like “Scream” has led to an upcoming avalanche of movies transplanting every possible movie plot into high school. This one takes “Pygmalion” with a few touches from “Pretty in Pink,” “Easter Parade,” “Cinderella,” and […]

Titanic

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:1997
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 1997

Classic Greek tragedies explored the theme of hubris as human characters dared to take on the attributes of the gods only to find their hopes crushed. This is a real-life story of hubris, as the ship declared to be “unsinkable” […]

Never Been Kissed

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

Drew Barrymore is completely adorable in this completely adorable story about Josie, a former high school ugly duckling, now a copy editor for the Chicago Sun Times. She wants to prove herself as a reporter and her first assignment is […]

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, […]

You’ve Got Mail

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

The classic story of two enemies who discover that they are really the “dear friends” who share a loving penpal relationship is deliciously updated for the era of email. Tom Hanks plays Joe Fox, scion of a family that owns […]

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 […]

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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