Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Movie Mom™


New in Theaters
  New to DVD

McFarland USA
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for thematic material, some violence and language
Release Date:
February 20, 2015

 

Big Hero 6
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for action and peril, some rude humor, and thematic elements
Release Date:
November 7, 2014

The DUFF
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual material throughout, some language and teen partying
Release Date:
February 20, 2015

 

Horrible Bosses 2
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong crude sexual content and language throughout
Release Date:
November 26, 2104

Kingsman: The Secret Service
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for sequences of strong violence, language and some sexual content
Release Date:
February 13, 2015

 

Beyond the Lights
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sexual content including suggestive gestures, partial nudity, language and thematic elements
Release Date:
November 14, 2014

Flanagan’s Infuriating Mis-Read of “Juno”

posted by Nell Minow

Caitlan Flanagan’s elegant prose and exceptional grasp of vital detail make it easy to miss the single most important fact about what she writes — her absence of any insight about anything outside her own experience and her own head. In the New York Times, she wrote an op-ed about the movie Juno that has a mind-boggling misread of the movie’s conclusion.

The final scene of the movie shows Juno and her boyfriend returned to their carefree adolescence, the baby — safely in the hands of his rapturous and responsible new mother — all but forgotten.

On the contrary. The final scene is bittersweet. The screenplay notes their “ambiguous smiles” at each other. Everyone in the film is changed in unexpected ways as a result of the sexual encounter that begins the film, one which, as Paulie reminds her, was not the impulsive act of a bored teenager but a deliberate choice. And that conversation in particular and the film as a whole make clear that Juno fully recognizes the consequences of her choice for herself and for her child.
Flanagan’s review of a new book about Katie Couric appears in the current issue of “The Atlantic.” As usual, the first third of the piece is not about the book or about Katie Couric but about Flanagan herself and how she used to feel watching the pre-Couric “Today Show” when she was in college. As usual, when she does get to the topic she is supposed to be discussing whatever she has to say about Couric is more about her than it is about her subject. It would be one thing if she decided to be this generation’s Joyce Maynard, obsessive self-awareness redeemed by felicitious writing, provocative opinions, and entertaining candor. But her self-awareness does not extend to awareness of how limited her vision is. She cannot keep from extrapolating every thought and feeling to her entire generation or to women everywhere.
I was sorry to see, at the end of the op-ed, a note that Flanagan is working on a book about “the emotional lives of pubescent girls.” I hope she lets them speak for themselves instead of making her own emotional life the template for everyone else.

J.J. Abrams: “Sometimes Mystery is More Important than Knowledge”

posted by Nell Minow

At Ted Talks, J.J. Abrams spoke about his lifelong love of mystery because of its “infinite possibility and a sense of potential” and how that passion influences his creation of stories like Lost and the upcoming movie “Cloverfield.”

And here is the first trailer for “Cloverfield,” a sublime example of a Mystery Box:

The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything-A Veggie Tales Movie

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Preschool
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:January 11, 2008

veggiepirates.jpgThe Veggie Tales have produced a series of popular computer-animated videos for children and their families, with fruit and vegetable-inspired characters in engaging and funny stories with gentle moral overtones. Their new feature film does not mention God, as the videos do (briefly but explicitly). It is a fable-like story of three unlikely heros who find themselves called upon to rescue a captured prince and princess. They have been captured by their evil pirate uncle, who is planning to usurp the throne. We know he must be a bad guy because like all classic movie villains, he has a deep voice with an English accent. Unlike the other characters, he also has arms and legs, or rather one leg and one peg.
Princess Eloise, in a Princess Leia-like desperate call for help, throws a golden ball into the ocean and tells it to find her some heroes. But the people, or rather, vegetables it finds do not seem very heroic and certainly do not think of themselves that way. They are “cabin boys” (waiters) in a pirate-themed dinner theater called “Pieces of Ate” who can’t even manage to get up the nerve to try out for the show. Elliot is afraid of so many things that he keeps a fight list. Sedgewick is lazy and thinks trying is too much work. And George, who has the husky cadences of a Borscht Belt comic, does not respect himself and realizes that his children do not respect him, either.
But the golden ball finds them and soon they find themselves on a rowboat in the ocean, on their way to rescue Princess Eloise and her brother Prince Alexander. Each of our trio will face important challenges and learn important lessons. And of course there will be a little adventure and a lot of silliness and a couple of musical numbers along the way.
The Veggie Tales’ colorful but limited animation can seem static on the big screen, and children used adventures that conclude in a brisk half hour may find this feature film a little long. But the gentle humor and equally gentle lessons will be appealing to younger children and long-time fans.

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Interview: Regina Hall of “First Sunday”

posted by Nell Minow

Regina Hall has been the best thing in many movies that were either not worthy of her talents (the “Scary Movie” series), overlooked (Malibu’s Most Wanted), or just plain awful (“The Honeymooners,” “King’s Ransom”). She has an extraordinary ability to be funny and real at the same time, always avoiding caricature. In Ice Cube’s latest film, “First Sunday,” she plays his “baby mama.” Her role is to hound him for money, but she manages to make the character touching and sympathetic. Ms. Hall spoke to me about the film, her plans for the future, and her thoughts on faith on January 4 in Washington, DC.


Regina Hall talks about her new movie with Ice Cube, Tracy Morgan, and Katt Williams, “First Sunday”


Regina Hall talks about her character, Omunique

I loved the way you made Omunique sympathetic — it would have been so easy to make her shrill and over the top. This was especially important because your scenes with Ice Cube and are in contrast to the rest of the movie, which is very broad comedy, and are what really make us care about what happens to the characters. Can you tell me how you thought about her and how you create that balance?

Omunique is like a lot of single mothers who work really hard and whose partners have not shown up in an equal capacity. It can make it difficult but she loves her son, and that is what matters to her. It’s about him, not about her. There’s another scene that got cut from the movie but will be on the DVD where she sees her son talking to his father on the phone about the video game and he tries to hide it from her. She tells him that he does not ever have to sneak to call his father, and it shows you that she is protective of the father-son relationship even though they are not together. It is a comedy, but you can’t caricaturize. Her name gave it enough! Omunique is not in a lot of scenes so I only had a few moments to get what you need for comedy and still leave truth there. That’s something that every woman of every race can understand.

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posted 9:16:46am Feb. 27, 2015 | read full post »

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List: The Best Movie Con Games and Grifters
In honor of this week's release of "Focus," here are some of my favorite movies about con games and grifters. Remember that "con" comes from "confidence." A con man (or woman) makes you believe in them and have confidence in their schemes. And cons make great movies. If you haven't seen these, crank

posted 3:45:21pm Feb. 26, 2015 | read full post »


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