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Movie Mom

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genre

  • Action
  • Animation
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  • Epic
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  • Romance
  • Science Fiction
  • Sports
  • Spy
  • Thriller
  • War
  • Western

quality

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

who's watching

  • My entire family
  • Just the grown-ups
  • Little kids
  • Big kids

age range

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




Limiting Screentime

posted by Nell Minow

It’s a challenge to keep kids away from television and computers and tablets and smartphones, especially in the winter when they are indoors much of the time, and when they’re out of school.  And it is a challenge to make […]

List: Family Favorites for Halloween

posted by Nell Minow

Halloween gives kids a thrilling opportunity to act out their dreams and pretend to be characters with great power. But it can also be scary and even overwhelming for the littlest trick-or-treaters. An introduction to the holiday with videos from […]

Participate in an Important Study of the Impact of Screen Time on Kids

posted by Nell Minow

Parents — Here is your chance to help scientists who are studying the impact of screen time on children.  No generation has been as saturated with media as this one.  Babies learn to play with smartphones and tablets before they […]

Emotional ABC’s Teach Children to Recognize Feelings In Themselves and Others

posted by Nell Minow

We spend so much time worrying about teaching our children reading and math that we can overlook the importance of teaching them to recognize and handle emotions in themselves and others.  So I like the new resources from Emotional ABC’s, […]

Children Tell the Nativity Story

posted by Nell Minow

This adorable film is the story of Christmas as told by the children of St Paul’s Church, Auckland, New Zealand.

New Report on Children, Teens, and Entertainment Media

posted by Nell Minow

Common Sense Media has issued a new research report, Children, Teens, and Entertainment Media: The View from the Classroom.  Findings include: Most teachers think that use of entertainment media has impaired ability to learn and perform in the classroom by decreasing […]

Teaching Kids About “Stuff”

posted by Nell Minow

I like Kirsten Greenidge’s piece in the Boston Globe about what she did when her children had tantrums in a store.  She said she understands the appeal of “stuff.”  And she described how the seemingly harmless fun of posting photos […]

Summer Activity for Kids: Memorize Poems

posted by Nell Minow

“Whose woods these are, I think I know….”  You know how I know?  My mother told me that would be a good poem to memorize when I was eight.  I still know it by heart. One of the best things you […]

Television Expands Content Ratings

posted by Nell Minow

It didn’t make sense to have “content ratings” advising parents of adult content in programs when they were broadcast but not when they were viewed online.  So I join FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, TVWatch, and others who have been advocating […]

FTC Approves Children’s Protection Program I Supported

posted by Nell Minow

I am very pleased that the Federal Trade Commission has voted unanimously to approve a program I supported to increase the protection of children and teens online. The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) requires operators of websites and online […]

New Study on Children’s Increasing Immersion in Media

posted by Nell Minow

How families use media and what it means for kids’ health and well-being is the subject of Zero to Eight: Children’s Media Use in America, the first study by Common Sense Media’s new Program for the Study of Children and […]

How Companies Get Kids Hooked on Brands

posted by Nell Minow

The headline is inflammatory but the facts are truly disturbing.  Business Insider’s slideshow on how companies get kids hooked on brands starts, believe it or not, prenatally, and continue through “alca-pop” candies and tobacco companies’ 18th birthday gifts to teens.

Ralph Lauren Pretends His Catalog is a Book For Kids

posted by Nell Minow

Renée Loth writes in the Boston Globe this weekend about Ralph Lauren’s new “book” for children — really a thinly disguised catalog.  They’re calling it “The first ever shoppable children’s storybook.’’ “The RL Gang: A Magically Magnificent School Adventure’’ is […]

Screen-Free Week April 18-24

posted by Nell Minow

It used to be called TV-Turnoff Week but that was so 1990’s.  Now it’s Screen-Free Week — one week for families to turn off the screens and reconnect with old-fashioned in-person interaction, to look each other in the eyes, spend […]

Back to School Advice from Parent to Parent

posted by Nell Minow

Common Sense Media has a very worthwhile list of back to school tips from the people who’ve been there — other parents. I especially like the idea of taking cell phones and putting them on an out-of-bedroom charger before bed […]

More Happy Meal Toys for Kids Promoting PG-13 Movies

posted by Nell Minow

The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood is asking McDonald’s to stop giving children Marvel comics toys that promote violent PG-13 movies. The fast food giant’s latest giveaway for preschool boys features eight Marvel comic action figures, including The Human Torch, […]

Teacher Giveaway: The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That!

posted by Nell Minow

I’ve got something very special for the first teacher to write me — directions below. At the American Library Association’s annual conference in Washington DC last weekend I attended a reception in honor of The Cat in the Hat and […]

The Other Toy Story

posted by Nell Minow

It’s a shame that a movie about the enduring pleasures of imagination and re-purposing and recycling treasured toys is also one long infomercial for more than 300 new products specifically tied to “Toy Story 3.” Susan Linn of the Center […]

The Oracle of Omaha’s Lessons for Children

posted by Nell Minow

The greatest investor in history is Warren Buffett, the only man ever to become a billionaire only through investing. He is giving the vast majority of his fortune to charity through the Gates Foundation. Mr. Buffett’s investment advice has produced […]

Teach Kids About Advertising

posted by Nell Minow

The Federal Trade Commission has a terrific new online game for kids that will teach them to understand the difference between someone trying to tell them something and someone trying to sell them something. It’s called Admongo. The FTC’s message […]

Is it All Right for Children to Use Bad Words On Screen?

posted by Nell Minow

As I have already discussed, the red-band (mature material) trailer for the upcoming film “Kick-Ass” has an 11-year-old character played by a now-13-year-old girl using extremely crude language. The New York Times article focused on the accessibility of the trailer […]

Contest: LEGO DVD!

posted by Nell Minow

LEGO® comes to life in its first all-new feature-length DVD movie. Meet builder and explorer Clutch Powers and his team of LEGO®experts as their adventure leads them from LEGO® City to the Space Police prison planet to the medieval world […]

Kids and Media: Kaiser’s M2 Report

posted by Nell Minow

The highly respected Kaiser Foundation has issued the third in its series of reports on children and media, Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8-18-year-olds. They found that with technology allowing nearly 24-hour media access as children and teens […]

Is Target the New Scrooge?

posted by Nell Minow

Is anyone as bothered by the Target Christmas commercials as I am? They have a series of commercials reflecting tighter economic times by emphasizing their low prices. Great, I’m on board with that. But these commercials would be sour and […]

More on the Eww-ishness of Zach and Cody

posted by Nell Minow

Slate TV critic Troy Patterson echoes the concerns about the smarmy qualities of the Disney series “The Suite Life on Deck” that Dan Savage discussed in the essay I linked to in June. “On Deck” is the follow-up series that […]

Maurice Sendak on DVD

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:NR
DVD Release Date:2008
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: NR
DVD Release Date: 2008

If you saw Where the Wild Things Are this week and loved it — or if your children are too young for it but want to enjoy Sendak on film, try the Sendak collection from my favorite Scholastic Storybook series. […]

If the World Were a Village

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:NR
Movie Release Date:2009
DVD Release Date:September 8, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: NR
Movie Release Date: 2009
DVD Release Date: September 8, 2009

Based on David J. Smith’s best-selling and award-winning book If the World Were a Village: A Book about the World’s People, this is an animated story about global culture that helps families understand our differences, our commonality, and our connections. […]

Do Reality Shows Abuse Children?

posted by Nell Minow

The Wrap has a provocative column by Domnic Patten about the impact of reality television programs on the children who participate in them. One problem is a loophole in the law. If children are working as actors on a film […]

PS 22 Sings

posted by Nell Minow

In the documentary Young @ Heart, we saw how elderly people singing rock songs gave the music a resonance and power that even its platinum-record-selling originators could not have imagined. And now we see the way that children led their […]

Did Board Games Cause the Financial Meltdown?

posted by Nell Minow

The Big Money has an interesting — and thought-provoking — slide show suggesting that the roots of the financial crisis come from the lessons we learned as children playing board games. Just look at these directions from Monopoly: Monopoly has […]

A Terminator Costume for Little Kids?

posted by Nell Minow

Cinematical reports that Toys R Us is selling a Terminator costume for little kids who, of course, are too young to see the movie, which is rated PG-13 and is just a millimeter away from an R. I understand that […]

More Marketing of PG-13 Movies to Little Kids

posted by Nell Minow

My friend Liz Perle has a wonderful piece at Common Sense Media about the latest efforts to market PG-13 movies to young children. The first Transformers movie, which was rated PG-13 but lent its brand to Happy Meal toys aimed […]

Where the Wild Things Are

posted by Nell Minow

Maurice Sendak’s spare, poetic, and deeply wise book has been lovingly unfolded into a movie about the child who lives in all of us, brave and fearful, generous and needy, angry and peaceful, confident and insecure, adventuresome and very glad […]

When Not to Watch Movies, Part 1

posted by Nell Minow

I was recently reminded of an incident I wrote about three years ago for the Chicago Tribune and it inspired me to re-post the essay: My husband, daughter and I had just settled in for lunch at one of our […]

Dora’s Disappointing Makeover

posted by Nell Minow

Here is the opening paragraph of a new press release: Mattel, Inc. (NYSE:MAT) and Nickelodeon/Viacom Consumer Products (NVCP), announced today that Dora the Explorer™ is growing up! The companies have introduced a whole new way to look at Dora for […]

Raising Spiritually Healthy Children

posted by Nell Minow

I am very pleased that one of my favorite people will be talking to parents about raising spiritually healthy children in a Tikkun telephone forum today at 6:00 PM PST (9:00 PM EST). Rev. Debra Haffner has worked with parents […]

Chris Brown and Michael Phelps — What Do We Tell Kids?

posted by Nell Minow

This has been something of a bad boy week. A-Rod confessed to steroid use. “Dark Knight” star Christian Bale was taped when he erupted into a furious and very profane rage at a technician on his set. A photograph of […]

Great Books for Kids

posted by Nell Minow

Reading Rockets is a national multimedia project offering information and resources on how young kids learn to read, why so many struggle, and how caring adults can help. WETA, Washington DC’s PBS Station, has worked with the U.S. Department of […]

Talking to Children about Poverty

posted by Nell Minow

Families may find that their children have picked up some of the concerns about the economy from the news or overheard adult conversations. They will need to be reassured that even if their families have suffered some financial setbacks, they […]

McCain and Obama for Children

posted by Nell Minow

There are very fine illustrated biographies of both candidates for children, a good way to begin a conversation about how we select our leaders and the importance of being able to disagree in a respectful and honorable manner.

Previous Posts

A Walk in the Woods
It isn't getting to that point where you most often see your friends at funerals. It isn't feeling stale because instead of promoting a new ...

posted 5:50:12pm Sep. 01, 2015 | read full post »

AJ Hakari, Mack Bates, Betty Jo Tucker and I Talk About the Fall Movies 2015
[iframe width="400" height="370" src="http://player.cinchcast.com/?platformId=1&assetType=single&assetId=7879147" frameborder="0"] ...

posted 5:09:27pm Sep. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Opening This Month: September 2015
Happy September! Fall is when we see fewer sequels, superheroes and shootouts, more dramas based on real stories or best-selling books. Here's what we have to look forward to this month: September 2 A Walk in the Woods Bill Bryson's book ...

posted 3:24:52pm Sep. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: Oscar Winner Eddie Redmayne in "The Danish Girl"
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/d88APYIGkjk" frameborder="0"] Eddie Redmayne and Alicia Vikander star in "The Danish Girl," directed by Tom Hooper ("The King's Speech"). It is the true story of transgender ...

posted 11:05:10am Sep. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Who is Surprised that a Faith-Based Film Beat Zac Efron and Owen Wilson?
The end of August is traditionally one of the year's low points when it comes to Hollywood releases. So it was not surprising that the powerhouse "Straight Outta Compton" lead the box office, far ahead of the two new releases, the Owen ...

posted 5:00:55pm Aug. 31, 2015 | read full post »

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