Lady Bird (2017)

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Lady Bird is a bittersweet coming-of-age drama about a seventeen-year-old girl in Sacramento, California. This film is very realistic and honest with solid performances all around and is an impressive directorial debut for Greta Gerwig. I suggest watching Lady Bird especially if you are a young adult or a parent.

There is some sexual content but I think kids 14 and up can and probably should watch Lady Bird.

Available on iTunes and Amazon.

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Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017)

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Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is a darkly comic drama about a mother who starts a kind of personal war on the local law enforcement of a small Missouri town when they fail to catch her daughter’s killer. This is a masterfully crafted, highly unpredictable, and expertly acted film which manages its tones of grief and tragedy with black comedy very well. It is also an eye-opening depiction of rural America. I think Three Billboards is one of the best films of the year with superb characterization and a pretty good score too so I highly recommend you go see it.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is surprisingly violent and in general a mature movie so I would suggest 14 and up for seeing this with kids.

Currently in Theaters.

 

 

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)

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Spider-Man Homecoming is about Peter Parker’s life after his brush with The Avengers in Captain America Civil War. This film is way better than the marketing had convinced me it would be, the comedy, action, and tension are all handled excellently. The characters are great, Tom Holland does a marvelous job as Peter Parker, Micheal Keaton plays the best MCU villain in quite a while, and Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark does not overstay his welcome in the plot as I feared he would. A particular scene in Homecoming caught me off guard more than any film has since I saw Fight Club and created brilliantly crafted tension over the next 10-20 minutes. If you still can, I would definitely recommend seeing the highly refreshing and charming Spider-Man: Homecoming in theaters.

Kids 10 and up shouldn’t have a problem with this film.

Available on iTunes and Amazon.

Colossal (2017)

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Colossal is a sci-fi dramedy about a young alcoholic woman named Gloria (Anne Hathaway) who is kicked out of her life in New York city and moves back to her hometown, meanwhile a seemingly unrelated giant monster is attacking South Korea. This movie is wholeheartedly original and fairly compelling, however, even though it is advertised as a comedy, it is much more a drama than a comedy. The characters are complicated but somewhat unrealistic. Although it suffers from these flaws, Colossal is still a fresh and entertaining story I recommend viewing.

Colossal is much darker than advertised so I wouldn’t propose kids younger than 13 see it.

Available on iTunes and Amazon.

Baby Driver (2017)

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Baby Driver is Edgar Wright’s highly entertaining “action musical” about a young getaway driver that loves music who gets wrapped up in a heist doomed to fail. This movie has a great cast including Ansel Elgort, Jon Hamm, Jamie Foxx, and Kevin Spacey, so the acting is obviously pretty solid. Visually this movie is impressive, but where it really shines is the music that is magnificently intertwined into the film, Baby Driver really is part musical, so much is in time with the music that by the time the credits roll you might even be thinking on beat. I highly recommend Baby Driver especially if you’re an Edgar Wright fan.

Most kids younger than 12 probably shouldn’t watch Baby Driver.

Available on iTunes and Amazon.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)

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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is the long awaited sequel to Marvel’s unexpected success in 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy. This sequel follows the guardians as they learn Peter Quill’s true lineage. In my opinion, Vol. 2 is just as great and probably better than the first film, the plot is better, the music is almost as awesome, the visuals are amazing, and the characters get more depth. I believe the reason there is so much more characterization this time around is because the first GotG devoted a lot of its runtime to setting up various areas of the MCU, that is not the case for Vol. 2 which means there is more time for the characters. It may be because I’ve seen the first one so many times, but more of the jokes in this installment landed for me than in the original. I highly recommend going to see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, it is 2 hours and 16 minutes you should not miss.

If your kids have seen the first Guardians, they can see the second.

TV Review: A Series of Unfortunate Events (2017-)

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Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events is an extremely unique and whimsical self-aware story about three siblings orphaned by a deadly fire uncovering dark family secrets and it is based on the book series of the same name. Neil Patrick Harris and Patrick Warburton are great, the child actors are pretty good and I really loved the soundtrack. The story is told/narrated by Lemony Snicket (Patrick Warburton) in a way that gives a feeling of peculiarity and freshness to the show. I highly recommend trying A Series of Unfortunate Events on Netflix because you have without a doubt never seen anything like it, at first it will seem very strange and unusual but you will quickly get used to it’s unique atmosphere and learn to embrace it by the time you finish season 1.

Although intentionally dark and despairing, this series is actually kind of lighthearted, kids 9 and up can probably watch it without a problem.

Available on Netflix.