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The Best Old Movies for Families: A Guide to Watching Together Paperback – February 13, 2007
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“Every parent has asked for Ty Burr’s book. Every movie-mad child will steal it from the parents. This is a guide to classic movies for kids, written with verve, humor, and pep. A winner.”
—David Thomson, author of The New Biographical Dictionary of Film
“A treasure, a delight, and quite possibly a marriage-saver as well. Ty Burr’s advice on when, how, and even why to share with our children the movies we cherish from our own youth is funny, hip, and wise. My ten-year-old stole the book right out of my hands.” —Julia Glass, National Book Award–Winning Author of Three Junes
“Terrific, necessary, and carried out with integrity, intelligence, sensitivity, and totally without condescension. Ty Burr's book can lead to a lot of pleasure–of the life-long kind.” —Peter Bogdanovich
About the Author
Ty Burr is the film critic for The Boston Globe, and the father of two. For over a decade he wrote about movies for Entertainment Weekly, and estimates he has seen 10,680 films.
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I've experimented with "Singing in the Rain" and "The Adventures of Robin Hood" so far with universally positive results (my son was somewhat fidgety during the dialog portions of "Singing in the Rain", but was riveted by the singing, dancing, and comedic scenes). "Robin Hood" was a hit from frame one.
This book is also a pleasure to read with regard to Mr. Burr's antidotes. You can tell he learned a lot through this process and had a great time doing it.
My daughters are nearly the same age as his daughters were when he wrote the book (9 & 11), so the book is particularly on target for us. I love how Burr describes his daughters' and their friends' reactions to old movies. I am surprised by how much negativity about older movies he says has received from some of his children's friends and their parents, because my children and their friends have always been completely receptive to older and black & white movies. But we don't move in mainstream circles (we are secular homeschoolers), so I will take his word for it.
If you enjoy watching movies with your children, you need to own this book.
Ty Burr is a movie lover, not a movie snob, this is so readable and once read it will be referred to many times when your looking for that special movie.
Would I ever have thought to try The African Queen with my sons? No. But it's true that the Hepburn and Bogart characters are amazing, the leeches grossed them out, they enjoyed Hepburn pouring the booze into the river and the adventure of the river journey made for a great family movie night.
Burr's description of showing his daughters movies like King Kong will make you laugh out loud and I enjoyed reading the descriptions of movies that even if they aren't suitable for my family. I have sons while Burr has daughters but that just makes me wonder if I could get my family to watch a musical - I bet I can with some of Burr's suggestions.
When a book keeps getting checked out from the library that means it's time to buy my own copy. This is just that type of book.