Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Movie Mom™


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Unfinished Business
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for some strong risque sexual content/graphic nudity, and for language and drug use
Release Date:
March 6, 2015

 

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some disturbing images and thematic material
Release Date:
November 21, 2014

Chappie
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for violence, language and brief nudity
Release Date:
March 6, 2015

 

Foxcatcher
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for some drug use and a scene of violence
Release Date:
November 21, 2014

The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:

Release Date:
March 6, 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

When Boredom Beats Mental Busywork

posted by Nell Minow

I love this tribute to boredom on car trips with children.  I well remember being in the back seat with my sisters, alternating games of GHOST and Botticelli with highway bingo and, yes, arguing with each other about who had to ride in the middle.  What will today’s children remember about family car trips?  Watching “Frozen” for the 17th time?  Playing video games?  Car trips can be tedious without media, but they can be the most precious family bonding time you will ever have.  And there is no greater gift you can give a child than the ability to be present in the world and find ways to use his or her imagination for entertainment.  And it is also good for them to learn that we watch movies to engage our minds, hearts, and spirits, not as a distraction from whatever is going on around us.

Antonia Malchick writes about her family’s device-free drive:

Even I was surprised by how well they adapted to the screen-free hours in the car. John took to drawing intricate pictures with hilarious narrative explanations. Alex tried to copy him, and then got bored and threw her stuffed dogs at him. He threw his stuffed Angry Birds back. They giggled and fought and stared out the windows a lot. And it wasn’t just them_I was noticeably more relaxed and calmer without constant access to Facebook; FOMO (“fear of missing out”) faded away and I got to pay attention to everything else I’d been missing out on.

South Dakota was hot, but it also has the Badlands, which they’ll remember instead of Caillou; they know that Illinois is where we passed wind farms and corn farms, not where they were playing Minecraft; that Billings, Montana, stinks of oil refinery and has approximately a million coal trains but it was also where_we only saw it because we were paying attention — we passed a train of open freight cars, each carrying a massive windmill blade.

Instead of memories of a crazy long car trip where they escaped the dullness in videos and games, they’ll have memories of a crazy long car trip where they formed a more complex relationship with each other and with me. They got a sense of the country, its vastness and variety, its future and past, and a sense of themselves at the same time, what their minds are capable of when allowed to roam in the deceptive bleakness of boredom. The perfect road trip.

Screenwriter Graham Moore on Writing About Smart People

posted by Nell Minow

One of the most touching moments of the 2015 Oscars broadcast was from Graham Moore, a 28-year-old screenwriter who won the Best Adapted Screenplay award for “The Imitation Game,” based on mathematician Alan Turing’s word to solve the Enigma code during WWII.

YouTube Preview Image

Moore, the author of a captivating Sherlock Holmes/Sir Arthur Conan Doyle mystery The Sherlockian, wrote a thoughtful piece called “How to Write About Characters Who Are Smarter than You,” about the challenges and pleasures of writing about characters who have extraordinarily powerful intellects. He said he hates it when movies show scientists talking in jargon only to have the “ordinary guy” say something like, “Whoa, Doc, say that in English!”

You know exactly what I’m talking about. You’ve seen this moment on screen, you’ve seen it on TV, you’ve read it in novels. I find this moment to be extremely condescending to its audience. The moment essentially signals to the viewer that all of that mumbo-jumbo that this smarty pants has been blathering on about, well, we filmmakers do not understand a word of it. Moreover, we don’t care to. And we have no interest in your understanding it either.

It’s a moment of casually cynical anti-intellectualism. It’s a joke predicated on the idea that only some geeky sex-less egghead would ever bother to care about what some dotty scientist says. The moment treats neither its characters nor its audience with respect.

I would suggest that the reason moments like this keep popping up on screens small and large is quite simply that writing about an exceptionally brilliant character is terribly difficult. There is a tendency to blow off a character’s brilliance, in moments like the one I’ve described, rather than confront her genius head on. Because the latter approach is just so infernally difficult.

Moore made the wise decision to take a different approach. “[T]rying to convey his intelligence on screen was a democratizing act. That opening his one-of-a-kind mind up on screen was about letting other people in; not about shutting them out. That genius is conveyed by sharing intelligence, not by hoarding it. We’re all in this smart business together, in a sense.

YouTube’s New Campaign for Women: #DearMe

posted by Nell Minow

What advice would you give your younger self?  In celebration of International Women’s Day, take part in YouTube’s global #DearMe initiative to inspire and empower young girls everywhere.

Play the #1 Songs Since 1946

posted by Nell Minow

Playback.fm has all the top pop songs since 1946, with a clever app that lets you check out what was #1 the day you were born or on any other special day in your life.

Previous Posts

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Writer Alan Bennett ("The Madness of King George") was not sure about the right way to respond when a near-homeless woman in a fragile mental state moved her dilapidated van in front of his house. He did not want her there but he could not bring himself to send her away. What began as a three week

posted 8:00:47am Mar. 06, 2015 | read full post »

Unfinished Business
"Unfinished Business" is a story about three renegade renegades from bureaucracy going up against The Man and the importance of the individual in an era of soul-grinding corporatism. But the mo

posted 5:59:57pm Mar. 05, 2015 | read full post »

Chappie
So, basically, no one here saw "Terminator." Or "Frankenstein." But maybe they did see "Robocop?" Or "Short Circuit?" Writer/director Neill Blomkamp likes sci-fi allegories of social and political conf

posted 5:59:11pm Mar. 05, 2015 | read full post »

The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
A documentary called "Young at Heart" had a choir of singers in their 80's performing contemporary rock songs.  The very fact of their age and experience gave an unexpectedly profound meaning to the words.  And in "The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," a plot that ranges from silly to very silly

posted 5:55:14pm Mar. 05, 2015 | read full post »

Merchants of Doubt
Do you remember the tobacco executives standing up before a Congressional Committee, their right hands raised, each of them swearing that they did not believe that tobacco caused cancer?  That was in 1994, three decades after the US Surgeon General's report showing the adverse health effects of cig

posted 5:30:43pm Mar. 05, 2015 | read full post »


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