Movie Mom

Movie Mom

All reviews by Grade

(B+) Cabin Fever

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Imagine the basic Texas Chainsaw/Blair Witch formula, where five college kids go out into the woods for a vacation in an old cabin, meeting a few eccentric townies along the way and ending up with ...

(B+) Cadillac Records

Genre: Musical
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
In the words of Etta James, at last. At last, albeit imperfectly, the extraordinary story of the rise and fall of Chess Records has b...

(B+) Capitalism: A Love Story

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: High School
Twenty years after his groundbreaking "Roger & Me," documentarian-provocateur Michael Moore returns to some of the same themes with "Capitalism: A Love Story," about the financial meltdown and what...

(B+) Captain January

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Plot: Star (Shirley Temple), an orphan, lives with Captain January (Guy Kibbee), a retired sailor who runs a lighthouse. They adore each other, and she loves her life there, with the large communit...

(B+) Carnage

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Some boys are arguing in a park but we are too far away to hear what it is about.  One of them whacks another in the face with a stick. And then we are in a spacious apartment as the parents of...

(B+) Cars

Genre: Sports
MPAA Rating: G     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Look closely at the little flying bugs buzzing and bumping in the hot light of the desert. They are, of course, Bugs: VW Bugs with wings. In the world of this story, all of the characters are car...

(B+) Casa de Los Babys

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
John Sayles is not going to make it easy for you.

He is much more interested than questions than answers. Sayles is the ultimate "on the other hand" guy, which may make for more thoughtfu...

(B+) Casino Jack and the United States of Money

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: High School
As print media crumbles and broadcast and cable media splinters, documentaries have become one of the most thorough and dependable formats for delivering long-form journalism. From the acid (in bo...

(B+) Cat Ballou

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Plot: In the days of the old West, Catherine (Cat) Ballou (Jane Fonda) takes the train home, after finishing school. She does her best to appear proper, but peeks at potboilers about the notorious...

(B+) Cat On a Hot Tin Roof

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
Plot: Big Daddy’s (Burl Ives) family is celebrating both his 65th birthday and his medical report, which shows his health problems have proven to be minor. He has two grown sons, Brick (Paul Newm...

(B+) The Cat's Meow

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Peter Bogdanovich is still in love with the movies.

He has paid tribute to classic movies sucessfully ("Paper Moon," "The Last Picture Show," "What's Up Doc?") and unsuccessfully ("At Long L...

(B+) Catch a Fire

Genre: Thriller
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
A sizzling performance by Derek Luke ignites this story about Patrick Chamusso, a South African oil refinery worker who became caught up in the fight against apartheid.

Chamusso who did his...

(B+) Cedar Rapids

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Adult
The day after they invented cities, they invented stories about what happens when country bumpkins arrive in them. The adventures of the innocent in the big, bad metropolis have been popular for c...

(B+) Changing Lanes

Genre: Thriller
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Most thrillers have audiences asking themselves what the characters will do next. This one will have them asking themselves what they might do in this situation, because it is a movie about how cl...

(B+) Charlie St. Cloud

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
Zac Efron makes an affecting and credible dramatic lead in "Charlie St. Cloud," the movie Nicholas Sparks wishes he could write, based on the » Read Review

(B+) Charlie's Angels

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
Charlie's Angels" manages to fulfill the middle-school-age fantasies of both boys and girls and to make it clear that it does not take itself too seriously. The result is a lot of silly popcorn fun...

(B+) Chef

Genre:
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
You're writer/director/actor Jon Favreau.  You've been making big-budget films, mostly huge blockbuster successes ("Elf," "Iron Man"), but also a big-budget bust ( » Read Review

(B+) Chicken Run

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Chicken Run" has arrived to the joy and relief of the many fans of Nick Parks' Oscar-winning Wallace and Gromit short films. In his studio's first feature-length movie, a brave chicken plots an es...

(B+) Children of Men

Genre: Thriller
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: High School
"A baby is God's opinion life should go on," Carl Sandburg said. So, in a world where babies have stopped being born and the death of the youngest person on earth is an international tragedy, ther...

(B+) Chocolat

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
This choice little fairy tale even begins with "once upon a time."

It takes place in rural France, in a "quaint little village whose villagers believed in tranquility." They have "learned not...

(B+) The Chocolate War

Genre: High School, School
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Plot: While Jerry Renault (Ilan Mitchell-Smith) a freshman at Trinity Prep boy's school, is belittled by the football coach, two boys, Archie (Wally Ward) and Orbie (Dough Hutchison) sit high up in...

(B+) The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian

Genre: Series/Sequel
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: Middle School
prince%20caspian.jpgThe Pevensie children are back ...

(B+) The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Genre: Talking animals
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: 4th - 6th Grades
A gallant warrior mouse and a dragon with a secret join the two youngest Pevensie children for a voyage and a quest in the third and best so far in the Narnia series. War has come to England and E...

(B+) Cinderella Man

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
The people behind A Beautiful Mind have re-teamed on another real-life story, but with less successfui results. It has the ingredients -- evocative portrayal of an earlier time, an inspiring story...

(B+) Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant

Genre: Horror
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
Vampires are everywhere these days. There are the Romeo and Juliet-style stories of Twilight and the steamier » Read Review

(B+) Citizen Koch

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
The 2010 Supreme Court decision in the Citizens United case opened the door -- no, opened the floodgates -- to unlimited and unaccountable political spending by corporations and wealthy in...

(B+) City of Angels

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
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) an...

(B+) City of Ember

Genre: Fantasy
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: 4th - 6th Grades
Under the earth's surface for so long they have forgotten how and why they got there and even that there is another place to be, the citizens of the City of Ember have just about lost their sense o...

(B+) Clash of the Titans

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Director Louis Leterrier (the second "Hulk" movie) says that he was a big fan of the 1981 » Read Review

(B+) Clockstoppers

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
This special effects action comedy is fun for kids and fairly painless for adults. More important, it is a rare film directed at kids from 4th-8th grade, that most neglected of movie audiences. N...

(B+) Close Your Eyes

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Those who like atmospheric thrillers that feature pentagrams and second sight and mysterious incantations from ancient texts will enjoy guaranteed goosebumps in this story of a doctor who tries to ...

(B+) Cloud Atlas

Genre: Science-Fiction
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
» Read Review

(B+) Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2

Genre: Series/Sequel
MPAA Rating: PG     Audience: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
cloudy2 » Read Review

(B+) Cloverfield

Genre: Thriller
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
cloverfield-1-18-08-poster.jpg Stories, ...

(B+) Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope

Genre:
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
There's an old joke about a woman who goes to a therapist.  "Why are you here?" he asks.  "My family wants me to come because I love pancakes," she answers.  "Well," he says reassuringly, "that'...

(B+) Confidence

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
The "con" in "con man" comes from the word "confidence," because a con man doesn't use stealth or force to steal from his victims -- he wins their confidence, and so they give him their money, ofte...

(B+) The Constant Gardener

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Director Fernando Meirelles (City of God) turns his Brazilian –cinematic—jujitsu on an emotionally gnarled book by England’s spy king, John LeCarré, with an equatorial glare that dares the a...

(B+) Constantine

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Take a 1930's movie detective, a guy who shoots straight and talks tough. You know, the kind of guy who may have a soft spot for a dame in a jam but that doesn't necessarily mean he believes what ...

(B+) The Contender

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
The Contender" isn't authentic. It isn't even credible. It falls just short of preposterous. Now that we have that out of the way, let me say that it is thought-provoking and thoroughly enjoyabl...

(B+) Conviction

Genre: Family Issues
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
Sam Rockwell gives one of the best performances of the year as Kenny Waters, a man wrongly convicted of murder for eighteen years until his sister was able to prove that he was innocent and get him...

(B+) The Corn is Green

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: 4th - 6th Grades
Miss Moffat (Bette Davis), an educated and very independent woman, arrives in a small Welsh mining village in 1895 to live in a house she inherited and start a school for the miners’ children. Sh...

(B+) The Count of Monte Cristo

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: 4th - 6th Grades
Two things that almost always capture our attention in movies are watching someone learning something and watching someone getting revenge. Both are in "The Count of Monte Cristo" in abundance, an...

(B+) Cradle Will Rock

Genre: Inspired by a true story
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
How do you stay true to ideals when there is pressure to compromise in order to make a living? How can you sell without selling out? These questions are provocatively posed in "mostly true" interse...

(B+) Crazy Heart

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: R     Audience: Mature High Schooler
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 succes...

(B+) Criminal

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Mature High Schooler
The con man's greatest asset is not the gullibility of the mark, but the greed. It is much easier to persuade someone that you are dishonest than honest, especially if he is intrigued by the chanc...

(B+) The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Genre: Romance
MPAA Rating: PG-13     Audience: High School
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...

(B+) The Curse of the Jade Scorpion

Genre:
MPAA Rating:     Audience: Middle School
Woody Allen pays loving tribute to movies like "Double Indemnity" and "The Big Sleep" with this delicious comedy for grown-ups about a 1940's insurance investigator who, under hypnosis becomes a br...



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