Movie Mom

Movie Mom

All reviews by Grade

(B+) Babel

Genre: Thriller
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: High School
In the Bible, the story of Babel is a cautionary tale of hubris. The whole world had a common language until God, seeing that the people were building a huge tower together, "confused their speech...

(B+) Baby Mama

Genre:
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
"Baby Mama" is not just smart, warm, funny, and romantic, it is an especially welcome dose of XX chromosome humor in an Apatow-flooded XY era. Tina Fey ("30 Rock") plays Kate, a single woman who...

(B+) Bamboozled

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Spike Lee's new movie is ambitious, provocative, complex, thoughtful, and just about review-proof. Anyone who doesn't like it could be accused of not getting it. Anyone who does like it could be ...

(B+) Bandits

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
In the grand tradition of Butch and Sundance and Hope and Crosby, we have Terry (Billy Bob Thornton) and Joe (Bruce Willis), two charming rascals in love with the same woman. They don’t want to ...

(B+) Bandslam

Genre: Musical
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: 4th - 6th Grades
A little edgier than the "High School Musical" series and a little smarter than the usual tween fare, "Bandslam" is a refreshing late-summer treat for tweens, teens, and their families from the alw...

(B+) The Bank Job

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
the_bank_job_poster.jpgAh, the pleasures of the ...

(B+) The Basket

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: 4th - 6th Grades
The term "family movie" tends to evoke eye-rolling and sighs from all but the youngest kids, calling up memories of sugary stories about adorable children, cute pets, and bouncy songs. What it sho...

(B+) Batman Begins

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
Every so often, it's time to re-boot Batman.

Bob Kane created Batman in 1939. What made him different was that in an era of superheroes, he ha...

(B+) Battleship

Genre:
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: Middle School
As if it wasn't enough of a challenge to try to create a movie based on a board game -- and a board game based on a game that is perfectly adequately played with pencil and paper -- this movie has ...

(B+) Be Kind Rewind

Genre: Fantasy
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: Middle School
be%20kind%20rewind.jpgThis charming little fairy ...

(B+) Bears

Genre:
MPAA Rating: G     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
[caption id="attachment_26852" align="alignleft" width="202"] » Read Review

(B+) Beastly

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
It's the great challenge for all the versions of "Beauty and the Beast" that no one seems able to overcome: the beast is always a far more interesting, appealing, and yes, attractive character than...

(B+) Because of Winn-Dixie

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
This story of a girl, a dog, and the lessons they teach a small southern town is appealing but a bit heavy-handed, starting right at the beginning. It leads off with the sugary cliche trifecta: vo...

(B+) Bedazzled

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
The classic English comedy written in 1967 by Peter Cook and starring Cook and Dudley Moore has been Americanized. In other words, it has less deadpan humor, sly wit, and existential comedy and mo...

(B+) Bedknobs and Broomsticks

Genre: Musical
MPAA Rating: G     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Based on the book by based on the book by Mary Norton (also the author of The Borrowers," » Read Review

(B+) Begin Again

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating:     Audience: High School
"It's delicate," a songwriter tells a performer who has (literally) amped up her gentle ballad into a power anthem. » Read Review

(B+) Beginners

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Oliver (Ewan McGregor) is engaged in the saddest of tasks, clearing out his late father's home, choosing what to take, what t...

(B+) Behind Enemy Lines

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
"Behind Enemy Lines" is an old-fashioned, heart-thumping, send-in-the-Marines, "I don’t care what the orders say" rescue mission story, and the most purely exciting movie of the year.

Equa...

(B+) Beijing Bicycle

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School

A classic romance always involves a certain formula: Boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl. Beijing Bicycle is a romance, except the love interest is a bicycle and not a girl.

...

(B+) Belle

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: Middle School
belle-poster » Read Review

(B+) The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: Middle School
A dream team ensemble cast of British acting superstars gives a predictable story of displaced retirees spark and depth in this cozy tale based on the novel  » Read Review

(B+) Beyond the Mat

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
This is the best documentary since "Hoop Dreams," and it is not a coincidence that it, too, is about sports. That means that it is about money, ambition, competition, dreams realized and dashed, r...

(B+) Beyond the Sea

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler

Parents should know that the movie has situations and behavior that may be upsetting to some viewers including tense and emotional confrontations. Characters drink (one abuses alcohol in res...

(B+) The Big Bad Swim

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Adult
I am a bit of a softie when it comes to those movies about diverse groups of people who come together to learn something new like tap dancing ("Stepping Out" with Liza Minnelli) or ballroom dancing...

(B+) Big Fat Liar

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
In this likeable family comedy, Jason Shepherd (Frankie Muniz of "Malcolm in the Middle") plays an 8th grader who relies on his easy smile and even easier lies to keep him out of trouble, with a li...

(B+) Big Trouble

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
If not quite as sharp as it could be, "Big Trouble" is still a sharp, funny movie. Based on the book by Pulitzer Prize-winning humorist Dave Berry, it has a terrific cast getting caught up in del...

(B+) Biker Boyz

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
It's just a bunch of music video-style motorcycle races punctuated with brief interludes that are more dramatic place-holders than story, but a top-notch cast, some flashy camera work, and attitude...

(B+) Black Nativity

Genre:
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: Middle School
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(B+) The Black Swan

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Adult

Ballet is more than a profession or even an art form; it is a calling, almost a cult, that demands the ultimate commitment. Ballerinas give everything they have. Director Darren Aronofsky, alw...

(B+) The Blind Swordsman: Zatoichi

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
There is a tap-dancing scene in the samurai film, “Zatoichi”.

For fans of the genre, using the words “samurai” and “tap-dancing” in the same sentence should capture both the ey...

(B+) Block Party

Genre: Musical
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: High School
The regal Erykah Badu takes the stage, her slender form topped with an enormous puff of hair that hangs down over her face. But the stage is outdoors on a gusty, rainy day, and all of a sudden it ...

(B+) Bloody Sunday

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
On January 30, 1972, thousands of civil rights demonstrators in Derry (Londonderry), Ireland, held a rally to protest the British Government’s use of internment without due process in Northern Ir...

(B+) Borat

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
First and foremost, let me make it clear that this movie has extremely outrageous and offensive material and is not for the faint of heart or the easily shocked, and inappropriate for sensitive or...

(B+) The Borrowers

Genre: For the Whole Family
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Mary Norton's delightful book about the tiny people who live in houses and "borrow" foraged items (thus explaining why no one can ever find anything) is charmingly translated to the screen. The art...

(B+) The Bourne Identity

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
"The Bourne Identity" does not have much in the way of plot or characters, but it is a better-than-average guns, gadgets, and chases in interesting locations movie.

The film starts off with...

(B+) The Bourne Supremacy

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
This is a smooth thriller for grown-ups. That means it has lots of chase scenes and action scenes but the mood is dark, even grim. The dialogue is smart but not smart-alecky. No one wears a dinn...

(B+) The Bourne Ultimatum

Genre: Thriller
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
There is not much story here. The set-up was two movies ago, when a man with a gunshot wound was fished out of the water. He had no memory but when it came to the tricks of the spy trade, he had ...

(B+) The Boy Who Could Fly

Genre: For the Whole Family
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
In honor of Special Education Week, watch this touching film with your family: Milly (Lucy Deakins), her mother, Charlene (Bonnie Bedelia), and her brother, Louis (Fred Savage), move into a new ho...

(B+) The Brave Little Toaster

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
In this movie, based on a story by science-fiction author Thomas M. Disch, a group of household appliances in a summer cottage, worried about their young master, leave home to go and find him, enco...

(B+) Breach

Genre: Thriller
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
Robert Hanssen was the head of the Soviet department in the FBI. And he was working for the enemy. Over a period of 22 years, he sold vital secrets to the Soviet and Russian governments for $1.5 m...

(B+) Brian's Song

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: 4th - 6th Grades
This is the true -- and heartbreaking -- story of Brian Piccolo and Gale Sayers, players for the Chicago Bears, who were the first interracial roommates in pro sports, based on the memoir by Sayers...

(B+) Bridesmaids

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
There is something intriguingly subversive in "Bridesmaids" that goes beyond the anarchy inherent in all humor and its reliable sub-category, the switch-up.  But we'll talk about those first to ge...

(B+) Bridge to Terabithia

Genre:
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Thirty years ago, a young mother named Katherine Paterson wrote a book to console her son David after his close friend was killed in an accident. That book went on to win the Newberry, children's ...

(B+) Bridget Jones's Diary

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Renée Zellwegger is irresistible as Bridget Jones, in this delectable romantic comedy with some sly references to that uber-romantic comedy, Pride and Prejudice. From the opening credits, when w...

(B+) Brokeback Mountain

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: High School
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 Cro...

(B+) Brotherhood of the Wolf

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler

Some may say that only a guy could enjoy Brotherhood of the Wolf (Le Pacte des Loupes). After all, the movie contains lots of guy elements: gore, martial-arts, and werewolves. But, there’...

(B+) Bulletproof Monk

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
Here is how cool Hong Kong action superstar Chow Yun-Fat ("Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon") is: while clearly capable of outshining just about anyone and anything in movies today, instead he manage...

(B+) Bully

Genre:
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: Middle School
This is a message for Alex.  You are a great kid.  You will be a great, happy, successful adult.  And those high school boys who torture you so brutally on the school bus every day will spend th...



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