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Black Nativity
Black Nativity
DVD ~ Forest Whitaker
Price: $12.49
17 used & new from $8.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is truly an inspirational film and a joy to watch, December 5, 2014
This review is from: Black Nativity (DVD)
This is truly an inspirational film and a joy to watch.

Langston, played by Jacob Latimore, has to spend the Christmas holiday in New York City with his grandparents, Reverend Cornell Cobbs played by Forest Whitaker and Aretha Cobbs played by Angela Bassett, who he doesn't really know. While there, he has to go by their rules. He wants to get back home to his mother Naima played by Jennifer Hudson. He goes through some things and discovers the true meaning of faith, family and forgiveness.

This adaptation of Langston Hughes' play is wonderful. I really like the storyline with its great messages and its attention to detail, even down to the Cobb's family brownstone in Harlem. The acting is powerful and intense and, of course, I love the music. Executive music director, Ralph Saadiq shows his musical talent and has created great songs that tell the story in such a way that both the young and old can listen to and enjoy. I especially like the choir scene.

I recommend this film for ages 12 - 17. Of course, I think the whole family will enjoy this movie. I give it 5 out of 5 stars. It's truly a musical event to be enjoyed during the holiday season.

Reviewed by Brianna B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more youth reviews, go to kidsfirst dot org.

Thunder & The House of Magic
Thunder & The House of Magic
DVD ~ Cinda Adams
Price: $9.99
6 used & new from $9.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My favorite scene is when the old magician does a magic ..., November 3, 2014
This review is from: Thunder & The House of Magic (DVD)
The animated film, Thunder and the House of Magic is directed by Ben Stassen Jeremy Degruson. The story is about a small, orange cat named, Thunder, who is abandoned by his owners. While wandering the neighborhood, he happens upon a supposedly haunted house, which is full of magical toys and an old magician.

Although, Thunder is quickly accepted into the house by the elder performer, he is not immediately approved of by the rest of the group. Through several adventures and troubles arising with the magician's not-so-nice nephew, who is trying to sell the house against the magician's wishes, the group begins to bond.

My favorite scene is when the old magician does a magic show for children in a local hospital. The magic is funny, imaginative and it is sweet that he does a show for kids in need.

Parents should know that this film is not for little kids! In the beginning, Thunder is chased by a scary dog, almost gets hit by cars and nearly falls out of a tree. In the end, he is thought to be dead for a short period of time. There is also a bit of bad language.
Therefore, I recommend this movie for ages 9 to 14.

I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars for loveable characters and an original storyline. It is available now on DVD! Reviewed by Katie G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more youth reviews, go to kidsfirst dot org.

No Title Available

5.0 out of 5 stars Does Not Disappoint! Combines Adventure, Comedy and Excitement with Friendship Galore, October 27, 2014
What an addition to the "My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic" franchise! This film has references to the first movie, a bit of story from the last season of the show and even all the little extra characters that My Little Pony fans love!

It is definitely a combination of adventure with a crème of comedy and a sprinkle of excitement all rapped up in a friendship sandwich.

The adventure starts when a band performance is planned at Canterlot High where the kids can make bands and raise funds and three very unusual girls turn it into a super competitive battle of the bands. When they run out of things to do, Twilight's friends from that world call to another world where Twilight is. Will they be able to come there and save them or will evil prevail?
This film is just fantastic! Hasbro was smart to include a lot of little fun things from the shows that fans adore including the beloved Derby Hooves pony who is really never part of the story, just in the background for fun. The songs are great as well. We hear not just the classic My Little Pony songs from the TV show. Instead, the music is very pop like which suits the story well. I imagine that sing-along coming to the fans shortly and being a smash hit. The show's creators also connected to the first Equestria Girls movie which I thought was perfect.

My favorite scene is when girls are having a sleep-over at Pinkie Pie's house. When Twilight gets out of bed and walks to the kitchen she finds Pinkie's older sister feeding her pet boulder. I love this scene because, in the show, there is an episode where we meet this sister. So, I thought having her in the movie is a great idea and so unexpected.

This film does not have anything parents should be worried about and for extremely little kids who do not understand the ponies, they will enjoy the bright colors. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars for its original story, fantastic songs and those little characters that fans and Bronies love so much!

Reviewed by Gerry O., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more youth reviews of films/dvds, go to kidsfirst dot org.

Jack and The CuckooClock Heart [Blu-ray]
Jack and The CuckooClock Heart [Blu-ray]
DVD ~ Michelle Fairley
Price: $19.99
26 used & new from $12.28

5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful film. It is one of the top five animated features of this decade., October 27, 2014
I didn't think I could love French cinema any more than I do. I've watched some of the best of live-action French cinema, but I've never seen an animated French feature (produced by Luc Besson produced, no less). Jack and the Cuckoo Clock Heart kindled an interest in me to watch more French cinema.

The beautiful thing about this movie, other than the way it looks, is its style. It is based on a rock concept album by the rock band Dionysus, so it is a musical - a feature animated musical. Simply put, Jack and the Cuckoo Clock Heart is the best animated feature since Toy Story 3 (not counting The Wind Rises for the sake of our mostly American readers) and it is the best musical since Sweeney Todd and Hairspray.

The movie has a very unique animated look. It is not quite as clay animated as Mary and Max but not as "normal looking," per se, as Finding Nemo. It comes off as a cross between the two. I'll admit, I am no expert in the creation of animated films but I do know what works in a film. Another aspect of the film's look, its art direction, is quite beautiful. It is dark, mysterious and effective in its tone. Speaking of which - the tone is quite dark with an underlying feeling of loss and rejection.

Even the score, in its happiest moments, have a heavy feeling under the surface. Although love does find its way into the story and the objectives of the characters, loss and judgment resurface. The themes are quite adult and not appropriate for young children.

As to the finest aspect of the movie - the score and songs, I would love this to be turned into a Broadway musical. The style of the musical and the editing combined is reminiscent of Moulin Rouge, filled with vivacity and rapid pacing. The songs each carry their own beat and enhance the personalities of each character and its intentions. There is a mixture of ballads, rap, rock and even Latin. I would buy the soundtrack to this movie.

The story itself is about a boy born with a heart so weak that falling in love would be too much for him. The movie follows his early life where he inevitably falls in love (screenwriting 101) and the strength of his heart is put to the test.

I have learned over the years that just because a film is animated, it's not necessarily designed for children. Jack and the Cuckoo Clock Heart isn't exactly The Grave of the Fireflies but it is not for young children either. I recommend this film for ages 13 to 18. And my rating is 5 out of 5 stars. It is a wonderful film. It is one of the top five animated features of this decade.

Reviewed by Willie J., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more youth reviews, go to kidsfirst dot org.

The Equation of Life
The Equation of Life
DVD ~ Willow Hale
Price: $11.92
31 used & new from $6.11

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must See For Ending Bullying Now, October 10, 2014
This review is from: The Equation of Life (DVD)
Genuinely spectacular! This well done story tells the truth and tragedy of bullying. Directed, written and starring 10-year-old Gerry Orz who portrays Adam Syder, the new kid in the neighborhood. Adam is being bullied by Nathan (Zane Paul), a boy who has a mother (Willow Hale) that treats him like garbage. Day after day Adam is beaten up and called names by Nathan and soon Adam has had enough.

One of the many reasons this film shines is the message it stresses- speak up! Bullying is a problem in our society. Whether it’s physical, verbal or cyber-bullying, it needs to stop and the message is addressed in a passionate way by the filmmaker. Orz shows the reality of what happens to many children who suffer from bullying. He doesn’t take the easy route where someone is picked on and the teacher comes in and fixes the problem. He tells us the truth.

Everyone's point of view is examined, which I love, including the bully Nathan. The bully is not the villain. He wants to be friends with Adam, but his mother says otherwise. Whenever someone picks on me, my mom always tells me, "You don’t know what happens behind closed doors.” She’s right, I don’t. The bully could be going through abuse himself or he might be jealous and bullying is the only way he knows how to express it.

My hats off to Zane Paul for his outstanding performance. We also have a heartbreaking story about Adam’s sister Miranda (Kaitlin Morgan). She knows Adam is being bullied, but she doesn’t tell anyone. She thinks Adam will take care or it, which he does, in the wrong way.

By far, my favorite character is Adam’s mom (Kate Orz). Something tragic happens and we see this emotional scene between her and Miranda. It’s hard to sit through because both Kate’s and Kaitlin's performances make this film even more powerful. It shows the struggle of not only the person being bullied, but the family’s grief as well.

All these aspects of the film are amazing and what makes it truly phenomenal is that this film was made by Gerry Orz when he was ten years old! Gerry tells this story in a very mature manor that allows all ages to comprehend the dangers of bullying. His introduction to the film explains why he made it and what he wants you to learn from it. The introduction alone is worth the price of the film. Gerry doesn’t want anyone else to go through the pain of being bullied and this proves the power of making a film on the subject.

This is a film for adults and kids, especially kids. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it to 8- to 18-year-olds. This film has one word in it that is not terrible, in fact it’s appropriate, but parents may not want their kids to hear it. Even with that I still highly recommend this film to kids so they can know to speak up and STOP the bullying. This film comes out on DVD October 14, 2014.

Reviewed by Keefer B.,KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more reviews by youth, go to kidsfirst dot org.

Slugterra: Return Of The Elementals
Slugterra: Return Of The Elementals
DVD ~ Sam Vincent
Price: $10.79
24 used & new from $5.94

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Slugs as Heroes! Who Would've Thought? And, They're Cool. Slugterra: Return of the Elementals, September 29, 2014
This animation is adventurous with specks of comedy and laughter throughout the film. It's an enjoyable film to watch.

The Shane Gang is back and they now have the power and talents of five Slugslingers. With new member Junjie, they discover that they and their world are in deep trouble. The Elemental Slugs are being corrupted by an evil force and the only way to stop them is to gather up all of the 5 elementals, before it's too late.

Surprisingly, I really enjoy this movie with having all the Elementals coming together for a common cause. The aspect of the film that I love the most is that you never know what`s going to happen next and it keeps you guessing. The action and anticipation makes it great especially when watching the fighting scenes. The film keeps moving at a good pace. It has lots of colors, but it is dark at times. The comedy keeps the film light and it never stays very serious for too long. Speaking of comedy, my favorite character is Pronto (Lee Tockar, voice), because he's funny and he's definitely the goof of the group. He is doing things that you wouldn't think that he would do.

Other voice actors include Sam Vincent (Eli Shane), Shannon Chan-Kent (Trixie) and Andrew Francis (Kord Zane). They all have high energy and are true to their on screen characters. The interaction between all of the slugs is great. Director, Johnny Darrel, is no stranger to adventurous animations, he also directed Hot Wheels: Battle Force 5 (2009), Spider-Man (2003) and Heavy Gear: The Animated Series (2001).

Trust people who have proven they can be trusted and who's good for you is one great message in this film. Trust is earned and not just given away.

I recommend Slugterra: Return of the Elementals for ages 8 to 14. It's a film that's perfect for a family movie night. Kids who love being courage and animation, this is your film. I give this film 4 out of 5 five stars because it interests me, it's adventurous and funny at times. I love the message about trusting. Slugterra: Return of the Elementals is now available on DVD and Blu-Ray. So please check it out.

Reviewed by Brianna B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more film reviews by youth go to kidsfirst dot org.

Tom and Jerry: The Lost Dragon
Tom and Jerry: The Lost Dragon
DVD ~ Kelly Stables
Price: $14.99
42 used & new from $7.42

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a fantastic Tom and Jerry film, September 23, 2014
This is a classic Tom and Jerry film with all the goodness included! I thought Tom and Jerry would find a lost dragon in their normal house, but no! Tom And Jerry: The Lost Dragon is a hilarious family friendly adventure with a lot of unexpected turns.

This is a story with a lot packed in it – adventure to start with covered in Tom and Jerry classic humor, with a sprinkle of thrilling and all topped with family wrapped in one huge delicious story sandwich.

The story begins with a girl who owns an animal-care shop but, it is going out of business. Then, they find a dragon egg and a whole bunch of stuff happens including the girl facing her evil Aunty Witch! Of course, the girl's two little helpers are a cat named Tom and a mouse named Jerry!
What a fantastic Tom and Jerry film! This has everything right about it. Tom and Jerry don't talk, but imitate talking. The slapstick humor makes you crack up throughout the entire film and much, much more! They cover all of it! The voices of the talking characters are fantastic and they also make it so that Tom and Jerry are very close to main characters but are not in every scene. I like this because it lets the story develop much smoother and takes it much further.

My favorite scene is probably in the very beginning when Jerry is awake and running around doing chores while Tom is lazily chilling on his pillow not doing anything - the classic Tom and Jerry scene. As usual, Jerry gets upset and teaches Tom a lesson. I love it because it’s such a classic moment for these favorite characters.

This film is extremely family friendly. Even kids who don't understand the characters will enjoy the bright colors, so a good age rating is 4 to18. I also give it 5 out of 5 stars for just an overall fantastic Tom and Jerry adventure.

Reviewed by Gerry O, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more youth reviews, go to kidsfirst dot org.

The Maze Runner
The Maze Runner
Price: $12.99

21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Action Packed, Visually Stunning Film that Will Keep You on the Edge of Your Seat Throughout, September 22, 2014
The Maze Runner is an action packed, visually stunning new film that made hold my breath and kept me on the edge of my seat till the very end. The Maze Runner tells the story of Thomas, played by Dylan O'Brien, who wakes up in a giant crate with no memory of his passed. He is taken to "The Glade," a place full of boys who were taken and had their memories erased as well. Thomas soon learns that they are trapped in a giant maze, and once you're stuck inside, you never make it out alive. Everything begins to change when a girl is brought to the Glade and so Thomas decides it is time to face the maze and find the whole truth about the people who placed them there. But the truth they find might be even more horrible than the maze itself.

I absolutely love this film. It is so intense and visually stunning. It kept me on the edge of my seat and made my heart race through the entire the film. Every time Thomas is inside the maze, I felt as if I was there with him, running for my life. But this isn't just an adrenaline packed adventure. The Maze Runner also moved me to tears and made me think about the way we can work together when we are truly faced with a challenge. The visuals are incredible as well. The maze is so complex and ever changing and it's so cool to be able to "explore" it in a sense and see all of the detail put into the CGI.

The entire cast is incredible. All the characters are so unique and have their own personality and quirks, but they work together in such a seamless way. My favorite character is Thomas played by Dylan O'Brien. He is the main character in this film and really makes the whole thing come to life. The boys that live in the Glade have been there for three years and, of course, they have tried to find a way out. But, most of them have essentially decided that they will live out the rest of their days there. When Thomas shows up, he tests the system and refuses to accept his fate of being stuck in the maze. I admire his character because he thinks outside of the box and finds his own way. He looks past his fear and is a strong leader despite the doubts people may have in him.

It's been very interesting seeing the theme of films that have been coming out recently. Hunger Games, Divergent, Enders Game, The Giver and now The Maze Runner all have something in common. They tell the story of young adults, children really, who have to group together and take on some very serious situations, sometimes things even adults can't handle. It shows youth questioning authority, standing up for what's right and making their own way. These strong themes send out a message of empowerment to the youth of our generation, but this can also be a bit overwhelming. I know it's difficult watching adults fight for their lives, kill and be killed, and have their worlds torn apart. But it's even more shocking to see children go through these trials.

Because of this, I recommend The Maze Runner for ages 13+ because of the intense situations and violence. It kept me on the edge of my seat and made me hold my breath during the intense situations, and I love when a film gets me so involved, but that may be too much for some to handle. I give The Maze Runner 5 out of 5 stars and can't wait to see it again. Catch it in theaters near you now!

Reviewed by Raven D., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more youth reviews, go to kidsfirst dot org.

Schmidt Short P8126 Capless Rollerball Refill - Black - 3 Pack
Schmidt Short P8126 Capless Rollerball Refill - Black - 3 Pack
Offered by Deal Grabber
Price: $8.66
4 used & new from $8.65

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed., September 9, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Ordered the wrong one and was unable to return or exchange it. Disappointed.

Geographics Parchment Paper Certificates, 8.5 x 11 Inches, Natural Diplomat Border, 50 per Pack (21015)
Geographics Parchment Paper Certificates, 8.5 x 11 Inches, Natural Diplomat Border, 50 per Pack (21015)
Price: $8.39
14 used & new from $2.95

5.0 out of 5 stars I love it, September 9, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
works fine for my purposes

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