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Disney’s MARY POPPINS RETURNS Lands Down on Bluray

Bluray Cover

Jeri Jacquin

On Bluray/DVD and Digital from Walt Disney Home Entertainment and director Rob Marshall comes our favorite Nanny as MARY POPPINS RETURNS.

Back in 1930s London, Michael Banks (Ben Whishaw) is living with his three children Annabell (Pixie Davies), John (Nathanael Saleh) and Georgie (Joel Dawson) after the passing of his wife. Sister Jane (Emily Mortimer) visits the childhood home regularly and living a busy life.

The Fidelity Fiduciary Bank is back with a new chairman in Weatherall Wilkins (Colin Firth) who is in their lives as Michael has borrowed money and the Banks family is being threatened with repossession of the family home. Remembering that their father left them shares, the two go through the attic to desperately find them – instead they find a kite but Michael throws it away.

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Annabel, John and Georgie find the kite and decide to take it to the park. That is where they meet a very straight forward and no-nonsense nanny named Mary Poppins (Emily Blunt) who takes the children home. Much to the surprise of Michael and Jane, Mary Poppins announces she is taking charge of the children.

That gives Michael time to go and look for the shares but Wilkins is no help. That’s when Annabel and John get the idea to sell something of their mother’s hoping it will help pay off the debt. Georgie has an accident and Mary enlists the help of her friend Jack (Lin-Manuel Miranda) as they set off on an adventure to fix the bowl.

When that doesn’t work, Mary takes the children to visit Topsy (Meryl Streep) who tells them the bowl won’t help their problem. The children decide to go straight to Wilkins to ask for help only to discover what is really going on.

The family learns that it only takes a moment to turn back time but will it be enough to save their iconic home?

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Blunt as Mary Poppins is charming and looks like she is having an amazing time. To me that’s important when you are taking on such an iconic character. It is good to see those shoes back in the house on Cherry Tree Lane and Blunt makes sure that we remember every minute of the return.

Whishaw as Michael is now raising his own children in the house of his childhood. It makes the transition for those of us who remember everything from 1964. Dealing with the bank is such an adult issue but then again it is nothing new to Michael. Mortimer as Jane has much of her mother’s women empowerment issues but doesn’t forget where they came from as children.

Davies, Saleh and Dawson as the new Banks children have some big shoes to fill and they do it quite nicely thank you very much. They are charming, sweet, funny and have hearts as big as their father and aunt. There isn’t anything they won’t do for their family and with Mary Poppins’ help, they are about to prove it.

Firth as Wilkins has the wonderful ability to be absolutely sympathetic on one hand (and be believable about it) and in the next breath he is as horrible as he wants to be – all while grinning with no shame. Streep as Topsy is very funny and of course she has the pipes to pull off any song you put in front of her.

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Miranda as Jack gets a chance to be the next generation chimney sweet as well as “Jack” of all trades. He fits in with his soot laden face and dancing on the London night cobblestone streets with all of his friends – including Mary Poppins.

Shout out to Julie Walters as Ellen because I have adored her since first seeing her in the 1983 film EDUCATING RITA. She is a chameleon and there isn’t a role she has done that I am not enthralled with. As Ellen she is hilarious!

It must be said, this film could NOT have been any more endearing without Dick Van Dyke who just made me absolutely giddy. Returning as Dawes was the smartest thing Disney could have done allowing us slightly older movie lovers to embrace someone who still dances in paintings that are drawn on our hearts.

Other cast include Julie Walters as Ellen, David Warner as Admiral Boom, Jim Norton as Mr. Binnacle, Jeremy Swift as Hamilton Gooding, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith as Templeton Frye, Angela Lansbury as the Balloon Lady, Noma Dumezweni as Miss Penny Farthing, Sudha Bhuchar as Miss Lark, Tarik Frimpong as Angus and Dick Van Dyke as Mr. Dawes Jr.

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment began distributing under its own label in 1980 and continues to bring quality programming to kids and kids at heart. Home of the most beloved animated features including SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO and SLEEPING BEAUTY to name a few is what keeps families coming back for more. To see what is currently available to add to your own family library please visit. www.movies.disney.com for their At Home titles!

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The Bluray Bonus Extras contain over an hour of Bonus Including a Sing-Along Edition Deleted Song: The Anthropomorphic Zoo, Bloopers, The Practically Perfect Making of MARY POPPINS RETURNS, Deleted Scenes and so much more!

MARY POPPINS RETURNS is absolutely a must have on Bluray to sit right next to the 1964 original MARY POPPINS. You can have both, love both and binge watch both with what I think could be three or four generations of family members loving every moment.

MARY POPPINS RETURNS is colorful, musical, fun, animated and everything we would expect not only from Disney but from Mary Poppins’ herself.

In the end – in a place we hold dear where wonder once lived…soon from above, a new story begins – again!

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HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON: The Hidden World

how to train hidden world

Jeri Jacquin

Flying into theatres this Friday from writer/director Dean DeBlois and DreamWorks Animation is the return to Berk and our favorite characters in HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON: The Hidden World.

Life in Berk has been busy and becoming slightly crowded as Hiccup (Jay Baruchel), Toothless and Astrid (America Ferrera) lead their friends on adventures to stop the capture of their winged friends. That is went Hiccup remembers his father Stoick (Gerard Butler) telling him the story of the Hidden World that is considered a safe haven for dragons.

Thinking they would search further out for it, Hiccup meets Grimmel the Grisly (F. Murray Abraham) who finds out that after hunting all the Night Fury’s – there is one left! He tells Hiccup to turn over his dragon or watch the destruction of everything around him.

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What the leader doesn’t know is that a beautiful white Light Fury has caught the attention of Toothless and he is smitten from moment one. Hiccup must tell his people what Grimmel is planning and they decide to leave Berk and look for the Hidden World together.

Discovering a beautiful island, they rest for a short while which gives Hiccup time to plan their next move and give Toothless time to be with the dragon of his dreams. Mom Valka (Cate Blanchett) flies back towards Berk to see how long they have before Grimmel’s attack ships get to them.

Hiccup and Astrid follow toothless and discover the Hidden World and see for themselves the beauty the dragons have built for themselves. They also see that Toothless has become their leader and when they try to protect their Alpha, Toothless is forces to save his friend.

All of this has fallen straight into the hands of Grimmel who captures Toothless and Light Fury and that doesn’t sit well with dragons or the people of Berk. Friendship and loyalty come together to fight for each other!

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Baruchel as Hiccup returns to finish the story he began telling us from the first film in 2010. He is now a young leader still trying to find his place and Toothless is his touchstone. Astrid is still strong on his life and he wants a bigger future with her but the crowding of the village takes precedent at the moment. My family has come to adore Hiccup as his frailties and flaws are right out front. He has become an important animated role model and there certainly isn’t anything wrong with that (just ask my granddaughter).

Ferrera returns as Astrid who has also grown in her role as a strong woman in the middle of a little dragon madness. She supports Hiccup but doesn’t forget who she is and what she has to offer the village. Blanchett as Valka is another strong warrior presence in the village even if she has an admirer that brings us all giggles.

Abraham as Grimmel is a man who just needs a hug or something. Killing off all the other Night Fury’s, he is hostile when discovering he missed one. He plots and plans to get Toothless and is patient to make that happen.

Ferguson as Gobber is still hilarious and full of wisdom in a twisted sort of way that I enjoy. Hill returns as Snotlout and has plenty to say even though I’m not sure he realizes how silly he is. Christopher Mintz-Plasse as Fishlegs has totally embraced dragon motherhood. Justin Rupple as Tuffnut who tries to give Hiccup marriage advice but it’s hard to take seriously a guy who fakes his beard. Kristen Wiig as Ruffnut who is tough and mouthy yet – I like her.

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Kit Harington returns as Eret who fits into the Berk pack like he was always meant to be there. Robin Downes as Ack, Kieron Elliott as Hoark, Gideon Emery as Trapper and Julia Emelin as Griselda the Grevious.

How to Train Your Dragon is a twelve book series by author Cressida Cowell. The first book published in 2003 has been a huge success and the books can be found world wide. DreamWorks Animation has also brought the dragons to the smaller screen with an animated television series that kids just love. I mean having dragons more often is always a good thing!

This final film in the series is beautiful and laced with everything we have come to expect from Hiccup, Toothless, Berk and the entire gang. What is even more stunning about the film is that as each of the films has gone along, so has the timeline for the characters. In this film that have each come into their own and made a memorable place in their community.

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Much of the time we don’t see the progression of animated characters if there is more than one. In the HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON trilogy, we have seen Hiccup grow from a young boy to a man and Toothless grow by his side (along with the rest of Berk). The series has dealt with life and death as well as everything in between when a community is as close as this one is.

Each film has made me laugh hilariously; get teary eyed a little and even now will openly admit to moments where an ‘awwwwwww’ or two escapes my lips. I had the pleasure of screening the film with my granddaughter who not only had the best time but wanted her parents to read the How to Train Your Dragon books (three times today alone).

I am thrilled with the way DreamWorks closed the trilogy and as much as I know I’m going to miss visiting the characters of Berk, the storyline of the closure was epic and satisfying in a heartwarming way.

In the end – their final quest and the friendship of a lifetime!

THE ORIGINAL CHRISTMAS COLLECTION is Iconic and Beloved

 

Christmas

Jeri Jacquin

Now on DVD and Bluray in the Deluxe Edition from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment are five holiday favorites that let us all know the fun is here with THE ORIGINAL CHRISTMAS COLLECTION.

What is on the collection you ask? Only the best of Rankin & Bass with Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman,  Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town, The Little Drummer Boy and Cricket on the Hearth.

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On December 6, 1964, the shape of holiday programming was about to change as Sam the Snowman tells the story of Santa and Mrs. Claus in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Rudolph is born to the lead reindeer on Santa’s team, Donner. The parents are quite surprised when they see that their young son’s nose glows a bright red. Santa sees it and Donner realizes that they will have to cover the glow so Rudolph can be seen as normal.

Going out for reindeer games a year later, Rudolph meets doe Clarice and one word from her makes him fly – literally. Unfortunately, the covered up nose comes off and he ends up being pushed away by the other reindeer. Deciding to run away, Rudolph meets Hermey, an elf who is having a similar identity crisis. He wants to be a dentist and not be just a toy maker.

While on the snowy road, they meet Yukon Cornelius who wants nothing more than to find silver and gold. Following them is the Abominable Snow Monster and they manage to allude him to the Island of Misfit Toys and King Moonracer who asks Rudolph that if he ever go home to tell Santa about all the toys on his island looking for homes.

Taking off on his own to avoid troubling his friends, Rudolph becomes a young stag and returns home only to find from Santa that his parents and Clarice have also been gone a long time. Looking for him has put them in danger and now he must find them. With the help of Hermey and Yukon, Rudolph finally discovers who he is and where his place is among his family, friends and the community he loves.

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Cricket on the Hearth tells the story of a cricket that seems to be the guardian angel of the Peerybingle family. The 50-minute production contains Animagic and songs that were composed by Maury Laws and Jules Bass.

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On December 19, 1968 The Little Drummer Boy the story of Aaron, and orphan boy, plays drums for the animals. After a tragedy at home, Aaron joins a caravan that performs in Jerusalem but in his anger he lashes out at the townspeople. When the troupe comes across a Magi, Aaron discovers they are following a star to Bethlehem. When one of his friends his hurt, he wishes to play his drum to make him well but something even more special changes for the young boy.

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Frosty the Snowman sang and danced its way into homes on December 7, 1969 as a group of kids build a snowman and name him Frosty. What they don’t realize is that once they place a hat on his a little holiday magic brings him to life. Young Karen notices that the temperature is starting to melt her friend and, along with rabbit Hocus Pocus, know they must get him to the North Pole as quickly as possible.

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On December 14, 1970, Fred Astaire becomes a part of our holidays at S.D. Kluger, the special delivery mailman who knows the story of Santa Clause. The ruler of Sombertown is the grouchy ole Burgermeister Meisterburger. When a baby is left on his doorstep with the name Claus, he is suppose to be taken to an orphanage. Instead a wind takes him to the Mountain of the Whispering Winds and taken to Tanta Kringle who names him Kris.

As Kris grows up, he wants to deliver toys to the kids in Sombertown only to discover that the Burgermeister has banned them. That doesn’t seem to stop Kris, especially when he meets the town’s school teacher Miss Jessica. The Burgermeister has taken all the toys that Kris delivered away but Kris promises to fix the problem even though he knows there is a trap set for him. Instead, he finds a safe place to make toys and one night a year makes us all believe in everything good.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us all to experience and re-experience in our own home theatres. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.

The Enchanting Bonus Features in the include The Animagic World of Rankin/Bass – An all new documentary celebrating the legacy of the holiday specials created by Arthur Rankin Jr. and Jules Bass including interviews with the filmmakers and historians, Restoring the Puppets of Rudolph – Discover how the puppets from the beloved special were restored and Reimagining Rudolph in 4D – A behind-the-scenes look at the making of the new Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer attraction film.

Also, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Attraction Film A short stop-motion film originally created for a Rudolph 4D experience, T.E.A.M. Rudolph and the Reindeer Games – A video storybook including the untold story of the Reindeer Games, Frosty the Snowman Pencil Test and Commentaries on Frosty the Snowman and Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town.

There hasn’t been a Christmas since I was four that I haven’t watched these classic holiday specials. It was quite easy to pass that tradition on to my own kids who are now sharing them with children of their own. What makes this such a magnificent set to own is that now we can watch them any time we like!

Also, as they only air once during the holiday season, the entire family can watch them again and again leading up to Christmas Day. For my family that’s pretty important because we can’t get enough of Rudolph, Santa, Frosty, the Drummer Boy or having a Cricket watching over us all.

Rankin/Bass brought so many animated specials to television and these five particularly stand out. The company was founded by Arthur Rankin, Jr. and Jules Bass with holiday specials that led to equally beloved specials. It must be said that in 1977, Rankin/Bass gave me such a gift when it animated J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and it still is one of my very favorites today.

The Animagic and animation of these specials are still as stunning and lovely today as they were beginning in 1964. It did not take long for each of these characters to become iconic and recognized in an instant by children and children at heart. Now having them all on DVD and the magnificent and stunning colors of Bluray, THE ORIGINAL CHRISTMAS SPECIALS COLLECTION needs to have a special place in everyone’s home entertainment library.

Now, if you will excuse me, my granddaughter and I have a holiday date starting with Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer!

In the end – the holiday season has arrived as old friends wait to celebrate with the entire family!

INCREDIBLES 2 is Exactly That – Purely Incredible and Now on Bluray!

incred 2

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray/DVD and Digital from writer/director Brad Bird, Pixar and Walt Disney Home Entertainment is the return of the family we love to love with INCREDIBLES 2.

After the Parr family has dealt with the Mole and his attack on the city, the Supers once again find themselves on the outs. Sitting in a motel room wondering what they are going to do next, Lucius aka Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson) arrives with news.

It seems someone wants to help bring Supers back! A meeting with Winston (Bob Odenkirk) and Evelyn Deavor (Catherine Keener) brings Bob/Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) and Helen/Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) a chance to prove that Supers should be brought back.

The idea is to make Elastigirl the face of the Supers which takes them by surprise, especially Bob’s ego. The Deavor’s provide the Parr family with a spacious and, well incredible new home and Helen an awesome two wheel ride. All of this means Bob is home to tend to teen-angst ridden Violet (Sarah Vowell), Dash (Huck Milner) and Jack-Jack (Eli Fucile).

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Home life problems include Violet’s confusion about her date with Tony (Michael Bird), Dash’s rambunctiousness and Jack-Jack being Jack-Jack. As Helen leaves to resume ‘hero’ work, Bob is now Mr. Mom and learning the ropes. It doesn’t take long before he becomes over whelmed but can’t let Helen know so calls on Lucius who is equally confused about it all. His last hope is Edna Mode (Brad Bird)!

Helen on the other hand is busy saving Ambassador’s and meeting new Supers. Winston wants to create a summit where everyone comes together once again. The problem is a new villain is using technology to turn the Supers into not-so-nice Supers putting the possibility of bringing Supers back on the back burner! You follow?

Don’t worry, you will, and what an incredible ride it is!

Hunter as Helen/Elastigirl takes the lead in this film as a working Mom in the most Super of ways. I love Hunter’s character for so many reasons but mainly she is the glue that holds the Parr family together. Not taking anything away from Bob, it’s just a Mom thang!

Nelson as Bob/Mr. Incredible is a little distraught about being put aside but slowly begins to see that he can be equally incredible being a dialed-in Dad as well. When he is finally called to help save the world once again, a twists comes in and the loyalty of family suits up!

Vowell as Violet is having the double issue of teen and super confusion. The one thing she does know for sure is that family is everything. Milner as Dash continues his wise cracking sense of humor and ability to test his parent’s limits – which isn’t always a bad thing.

Jackson as Lucius/Frozone is thrilled at the possibility of being free to freeze, even if his wife might have other ideas. Odenkirk as Winston is a man who truly believes that the Supers need to come back. He has his own personal reasons for it which are endearing. Keener as Evelyn is laid back and the technical brains of the very rich duo.

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Fucil as Jack-Jack steals the film from everyone and it must be said. This kid-character had me cracking up from start to finish – probably because that’s exactly how I see most toddlers. Fiery one minute and happy with a cookie the next, Jack-Jack is coming into his own and the family better learn to deal!

Other cast include Sophia Bush as Voyd, Phil LaMarr as Krushauer/Helectrix, Adam Gates as Chad Brentley, Jonathan Banks as Rick Dicker, Isabella Rossellini as the Ambassador.

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment began distributing under its own label in 1980 and continues to bring quality programming to kids and kids at heart. Home of the most beloved animated features including SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO and SLEEPING BEAUTY to name a few is what keeps families coming back for more. To see what is currently available to add to your own family library please visit. www.movies.disney.com for their At Home titles!

The Bluray include the Bonus Extras of Ten Deleted Scenes – Ideas from the Cutting Room Floor, Heroes & Villains – A Collection of Mini-Docs About the Incredible Characters of INCREDIBLES 2, Superbaby – Music Video About the Making of INCREDIBLES 2, Strong Coffee: A Lesson in Animation with Brad Bird – Explore Director Brad Bird’s Early Career and His Big Personality, Super Stuff – See What it Takes to Design and Build an Incredible World.

Also included is Making Bao, the Short Film BAO from Disney*Pixar and the All New Mini-Movie AUNTIE EDNA.

INCREDIBLES 2 has my whole family jumping in our very incredible Incredible pajamas. Yes, when we like something we go all in and this film is definitely family fun from start to finish. It is so great to have the gang back together dealing with the duality of trying to have a normal life while trying to save the world from itself.

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I believe the reason for the films success in 2004 is because this family is so dang cute for one but totally relatable for another. They have work problems, family issues, sibling rivalry – basically everything we non-supers deal with every day. The fact that they are animated just makes all of those things sort of enjoyable.

What I enjoy as well is the fact that writer/director Bird doesn’t really deviate from that winning formula. In fact, once again the story deals with losing a home, being unemployed, Mom having to be the bread winner and Dad discovering what really goes on at home and, of course, turning to true friends in time of need.

Those are awesome things to take away from a film that also entertains at every turn. I sit in front of my big screen television and am giddy with excitement to see one of my favorite families (if you must know, The Adams Family is also in that list) come together once again and, well, be a family that just happens to have something extra to share with us all.

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So gather up your own super family and prepare for adventure, laughs and a little learning with a family that shows us all how it’s possible to be incredible in our own special ways.

In the end – it’s back to work!

 

SMALLFOOT is Total Family Fun

 

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Jeri Jacquin

In theatres from directors Karey Kirkpatrick, Jason Reisig and Warner Bros. is the story high in the clouds about SMALLFOOT.

Migo (voiced by Channing Tatum) is a yeti who lives in a village high in the clouds. His father Dorgle (Danny DeVito) has a very important job of helping the sun come up each morning and Migo wants to be just like him.

When the village Stonekeeper (Common) bestows on Migo his own helmet, the training begins. After a few practice runs, he is set across the sky aiming for his gong target when distracted by the lovely Meechee (Zendaya), daughter of the Stonekeeper. Shooting over the mountain, Migo lands in a snowy patch and tangles with an airplane where he sees the mythical Smallfoot!

Running back to the village to tell everyone, Migo is banished by the Stonekeeper until he tells everyone the truth – there are no Smallfoots. Deciding to find one Migo takes off but finds himself followed by Gwangi (LeBron James), Kolka (Gina Rodriguez) and Fleem (Ely Henry).

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They take Migo to Meechee who is the head of the S.E.S. (Smallfoot Evidentiary Society). The group believes that all the rules set in stone for the yeti’s are not true, that there has to be something more. Migo still takes it upon himself to find a Smallfoot in the local town and meets Percy (James Corden), a television personality who spends his time discovering new animals but has lately fallen on hard times.

When the pilot of the downed airplane makes it to the town, he tells Percy that he saw a yeti which gives Percy a great idea. Trying to convince Brenda (Yara Shahidi) to dress up as a yeti, he could get his ratings back and once again be a hit.

But Migo has other plans and after a verbal exchange of sorts, takes Percy to his village. Stunning that the yeti’s are congenial, Percy finds himself making friends and explaining any questions, well sort of, that they might have. Meechee realizes that something is wrong with Percy and that he needs to get off the mountain.

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That’s when Migo discovers through the Stonekeeper that some things are better left untold to the people and making Percy go away is the best thing for them all. Not everyone agrees and when the two groups meet – someone has to bend!

Tatum as Migo is adorable and my three-year-old granddaughter is my proof. She was immediately drawn to Migo with his fast talking curious ways and when the singing began – that’s all it took. Laughing, clapping and cheering Migo on became her mission all through the film and it was as delightful as the film to watch. Thanks Channing for making our film experience so entertaining!

Corden as Percy is a fast talking personality who is losing his perspective and, according to Brenda, his integrity. Willing to do anything to bring back the fame he once knew, it takes a group of furry yeti’s to remind him of his humanity and ability to care for someone other than himself.

Zendaya as Meechee is charming and stubborn when it comes to doing what her father the Stonekeeper says. She believes that there is something more to their life and wants to be able to find out what that is. Common as the Stonekeeper is convinced he is doing the right thing by his yeti-people and is equally as stubborn to make sure the village is kept safe. Tatro as brother Thorp does his father’s bidding but does get an eventual wake up call.

DeVito as Dorgle comes from a long line of yeti’s who have made it their life (and flat headed work) to bring in the sunrise and enjoys knowing Migo will someday follow…or will he? Rodriguez as Kolka follows Meechee with no hesitation but is keeping an eye on Migo. James as Gwangi is another follower who believes with or without any proof. Henry as Fleem is the yeti that would drive me nuts always weighting the pros and cons of life until what he’s weighing becomes over rated.

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SMALLFOOT is fun, musical and giggly mixed in with lessons of loyalty to both family and friendship no matter how big or small your foot might be. The fun comes in the slap stick comedy of snowy pratfalls and snowballs that I will even admit to enjoying. In a theatre full of children, it is easy to see the delight on their faces.

The music is fun, lighthearted, engaging and, I’m sure, will create a few hits that will be sung by children again and again. While the characters were singing the catchier tunes, the children would stand up and dance a little which always makes the adult laugh and smile.

Giggling is inevitable with this film as its jokes get the adults and the antics get the kids, or maybe it’s the other way around but does it matter? The antics are there and its meant for every age group.

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The lessons of friendship and differences are what is wonderful and colorfully done with SMALLFOOT. Whether you are furry or have a small foot, each side saw the other as monsters and that is when the opportunity presents itself to either change that or continue to live in fear. I choose the change!

SMALLFOOT’s animation is colorful, vibrant and stunning which is just icing on the cake of a film, and I saw for myself, that everyone truly, truly enjoyed.

In the end – no every legend is a tall tale!

 

 

A Story of Two Worlds Comes to Bluray with NAPPING PRINCESS

Napping Princess Bluray

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray & DVD from writer/director Kenji Kamiyama, Shout! Factory and GKids is a story of daring, family history and adventure for the NAPPING PRINCESS.

In 2020, Kokone Morikawa (Brina Palencia) is a young girl who has become well known for dozing off occasionally and when she does, she finds herself in world called Heartland. It is a dream world of factories, workers and a man who rules it all.

Believing they are all dreams, Kokone and her father Peach (Doug Erholtz) have been living a quiet life but Kokone knows little about her mother. Meeting up with her childhood friend Morio (Shinnosuke Mitsushima) they have a chance to reconnect as friends and it couldn’t come at a better time.

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In a twist she doesn’t fully understand, Peach has been kidnapped by a man named Watanabe (Lex Wutas) who is looking for a mysterious laptop containing important technology. It is the technology that Peach has been hiding from both worlds. Watanabe is now on the hunt for Kokone because she and Morio have decided to find her father on their own and nothing is going to get in their way.

Kokone also discovers that the world she lives in now and Heartland are not so far apart when secrets are revealed and a plot that could change everything becomes known with a little magic. They must come together in Heartland to reconcile old wounds and remember that family and friendship is everything.

SHOUT! Factory has grown into a tremendous multi-platform media company. Releasing new animated features such as the exquisite Long Way North, and the epic fantasy Beauty And The Beast. Also their own original horror film, Fender Bender gives fans a good scare. For more of what SHOUT Factor has to offer please visit www.shoutfactory.com.

GKIDS brings award winning feature animation for both adults and family audiences. The company has scored an astounding nine Best Animated Feature Oscar nominations with THE SECRET OF THE KELLS, A CAT IN PARIS, ERNEST & CELESTINE, SONG OF THE SEA and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE. Also bringing Studio Ghibli library of films they include SPIRITED AWAY and PRINCESS MONONOKE.

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NAPPING PRINCESS is an amazing story of two worlds that actually aren’t so very different, except for the large engines of course, in that families makes mistakes and friendship can give us even more courage. Kokone is a young girl coming into her
own wanting to know more about the dreams and a family she knows so little about.

Those two things along make her character amazingly believable which is important to the story.

The animation is every bit spectacular filled with vibrancy and stunning color. This is a definite film that needs to be seen in Bluray. The journey between the two worlds is amazingly displayed with this animation and because the story is so dynamic I found myself totally wrapped up in every frame.

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Director Kamiyama is also responsible for the films GHOST IN THE SHELL: Stand Alone Complex and EDEN OF THE EAST so it is no surprise that NAPPING PRINCESS is equally as stellar and my favorite of his pieces is AKIRA. NAPPING PRINCESS is also titled ANCIEN and the MAGIC TABLET.

The Bonus Features include an Interview with Kenji Kamiyama, Special Interview with the Cast, Intro at Japanese Release, Okayama Scenery, Special TV Program and Trailers/TV Spots.

In the end – two worlds and one amazing girl!

 

THE NUT JOB 2 Nutty By Nature Brings Family Fun and Giggles on Bluray

THE NUT JOB 2 COVER

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray from writer/director Cal Brunker and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment comes the next nutty adventure with THE NUT JOB 2 Nutty By Nature.

Surly (Will Arnett) is back with Andie (Katherine Heigl), and Precious (Maya Rudolph), Buddy and the group is living and dining in a nut shop. Andie isn’t happy about it trying to tell them all that this isn’t how squirrels are suppose to live. Believing they should be working together, they have to when the nut shop closes with a bang.

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Back at the park Andie explains that they must get back to nature and collect their own food. That might be difficult as Mayor Muldoon (Bobby Moynihan) is the city scrooge who wants to make money by trying to find a way to close Liberty park where the squirrels now live. Surly convinces the group, much to Andie’s dismay, to fight the Mayor for their park.

Mole (Jeff Dunham), Jimmy (Gabriel Iglesias), Gunther (Peter Stormare), and Johnny (Sebastian Maniscalco) join Surly and Andie to chase the workers out of the park. Canine Frankie (Bobby Cannavale) is sent to clear the park but instead falls instantly in love with Precious. The Mayor’s daughter decides she wants to keep Precious but moving up isn’t always a good thing.

Surly tries to find Precious but instead finds a cute little psycho mouse in Mr. Feng (Jackie Chan). Andie finds another local park that is huge she is excited about their new home until smacked by a golf ball. Tired of all the worry and fuss, the gang comes together once more time to make a stand to stop the Mayor’s plans from ruining their home. Surly calls in an unlikely army to make sure their plan unites the city and park animals.

It’s a nutty job but they’ve just got to do it!

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Arnett returns as Surly giving us the carefree squirrel who isn’t about to let a silly Mayor and his psycho daughter change his lifestyle. Heigl as Andie is the straight forward no-nonsense squirrel of the group who just wants to be the furry creature nature intended.

Rudolph as Precious comes in with her slobbery lovely self and finds that none of that matters to Frankie the love struck bulldog. Cannavale as Frankie just wants to show some love and learns to see another side of life.

Moynihan as the Mayor can only think of money and how to make more of it all while handling a crazy daughter. Speaking of crazy daughter, shout out to Moner as Heather who needs serious anger management classes!

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Dunham, Inglesias, Stormare and Maniscalco round out the park kingdom nicely. Adding Chan as Mr. Feng as a cute (don’t say cute!) city mouse with a gang that that may look er, um, sweet but don’t let the big eyes fool you.

Other voice cast include Isabela Moner as Heather, Kari Wahlgren as Jamie, Julie Lemieux as Lil’ Chip, and Rob Tinkler as Redline.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us all to experience and re-experience in our own home theatres. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.

THE NUT JOB 2 Nutty By Nature is so much fun and a bit, well, nutty! It is a story of the animal world taking back what is there’s by joining together to prove they might just be a little smarter than we think. The animation is absolutely stunning with such detail that always amazes me. The flow of the fur is just mesmerizing actually.

The relationship between Surly and Buddy is so endearing without Buddy ever saying a word. Their friendship is based on a history that the film reveals in such a touching way. Andie is who I would call the ‘mother’ figure always watching out for the animals and wanting to keep them safe. She is funny in her break out of song too!

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The pairing of Precious with Frankie is just so dang cute I can’t stand it. Precious may be rough and tough but Frankie brings out the soft side. Now, the city cute wide eyed mice led by Mr. Feng are hilarious.

THE NUT JOB 2 Nutty By Nature has fantastic Bonus Features including Deleted Scenes, Animation Progression Reels, Concept Art Reel, and Feature Commentary with Director/Co-Writer Cal Brunker and Producer/Co-Writer Bob Barlen. Also included with a Digital copy of the film that can be streamed and downloaded on your computer, television, Tablet or Smartphone.

You will never see the park in same way again so gather the family and grab a bag of nuts to celebrate the new adventure of the animal world with THE NUT JOB 2 Nutty By Nature.

In the end – get ready, get set, get nuts!

MY LITTLE PONY Friendship is Magic with Holiday Hearts on DVD

My little

 

Jeri Jacquin

On DVD from SHOUT! Kids Factory and Hasbro Studios comes stories to begin the holiday season with MY LITTLE PONY Friendship is Magic – Holiday Hearts.

Staring with Applebuck Season it is apple harvest time and Applejack’s big brother McIntosh is hurt. Refusing the help of her friends, Applejack believes she can do it on her own. It doesn’t take long before she realizes that maybe she was wrong. All of her friends know that it is all too much and don’t hesitate to let her know they are there for the farm.

Winter Wrap Up has Twilight Sparkle wanting to be a part of the Ponyville fun when everyone prepares for spring and by not using magic. Struggling to be a part of the no-magic event, she worries about being able to truly help. Hearing the other leaders are having trouble keeping things straight, Twilight might have just found what she is non-magically good at.

In Castle Sweet Castle Twilight Sparkle doesn’t want to tell the others that she doesn’t feel at home at the castle. Wanting to help their friend, the others plan to redecorate but keep running into wanting to do it in their own style. Knowing Twilight misses the Golden Oak Library, the group comes on a plan to truly make the castle her home.

Hearthwarming

During Hearth’s Warming in Hearthbreakers, Pinkie Pie wants to invite her friend Applejack to spend time with her family at Pie rock farm. Both families discover that the way we spend holidays and have traditions is different in every family. With the two families differences, the Apples leave but Applejack wants to make things right for the holidays.

A Hearth’s Warming Tail has Twilight reading to her friend Starlight the story of A Hearth’s Warming Tail as Snowfall Frost is a unicorn that doesn’t like anything good, including Hearth’s Warming. Coming up with a brew to get rid of the holiday she instead has to deal with three spirits to help her understand what the holidays truly means.

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Finally, in Not Asking for Trouble, Pinkie Pie is asked to be a part of the holiday in Yikslurbertfest. In this yak holiday, Pinkie and the yaks do the customary stomping ritual and it causes a disaster when snow covers the village! Trying to get Prince Rutherford to get help, he’d rather wait until the snow melts. Well, Pinkie Pie isn’t about to let that happen asking her friends to help get rid of the snow which garners the thanks of a Prince becoming an official honorary yak.

It’s just another holiday season for the Pony’s!

SHOUT! Factory brings the best to fans offering up feature films, classic television series, animation and specials. For more of what they have to offer go to www.shoutfactory.com.

Hasbro Studios is an iconic brand with some of the best in animation and family programming with MY LITTLE PONY, and LITTLEST PET SHOP. Since its formation in 2009, Hasbro Studios has received seven Daytime Emmy’s!

MY LITTLE PONY Friendship is Magic – Holiday Hearts includes the episodes Applebuck Season, Winter Wrap Up, Castle Sweet Castle, Heartbreakers, A Hearth’s Warming Tail, Not Asking for Trouble along with the bonus feature of a Sing-Along for even more fun. Also included are Christmas present tags!

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I have to say that Applejack is one of my favorite pony’s but my granddaughter will tell you her favorite is Twilight Sparkle. That is what makes this series so amazing; everyone in the family can have their favorite and enjoy the series together.

The best part of this DVD is that each episode one again brings the most beautiful animation along with stories that are filled with holiday fun and friendship. MY LITTLE PONY Friendship is Magic – Holiday Hearts is a fantastic edition to anyone’s home entertainment library. It has to be there if you want fun, friendship and magic!

In the end – gather around for pony holiday tales!

MY LITTLE PONY Friendship is Magic: Fluttershy Floats onto DVD

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Jeri Jacquin

Coming to DVD from SHOUT! Kids Factor and Hasbro Studios is the iconic and loveable MY LITTLE PONY Friendship is Magic: Fluttershy.

The gang is excited when they learn that the famous photographer Photo Finish has seen Rarity’s fashion work! Setting up a fashion photo shoot, Rarity asks Fluttershy to be her model. Not sure that it’s what she wants to do, Fluttershy agrees because her friend has asked. Immediately Photo Finish makes it clear that she isn’t interested in Rarity’s fashions but Fluttershy as a model. It makes Rarity sad when Fluttershy becomes instantly famous and doesn’t know her friend is sad too. The girls work together to be truthful with one another and put a stop to the madness that is straining their friendship.

Fluttershy visits her parent’s home and learns her little brother Zephyr is returning to live. Immediately he treats his parents badly and Fluttershy gets grumpy about the way he is acting. She tries to convince her parents to speak up and make Zephyr responsible for his own actions. They agree and when he leaves Fluttershy is shocked to go home and find her brother already moved in. Doing her best to show him what it takes to be a responsible pony; Zephyr does his best to mess things up. Fluttershy tries one last time to help her brother fight his fear and succeed.

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A game of Buckball excited Rainbow Dash and joining a team sounds like fun to the other ponies. Going up against the Appaloosa team, Apple Jack trains them to put together a good team. Surprised at what a natural Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy are at the game, Apple Jack needs more players exactly like them. Snails turns out to be an awesome surprise! The team learns more about each other and what it means to be a team and have good sportsmanship.

Apple Jack and Fluttershy are asked by Rainbow Dash to go to Las Pegasus. Twilight tells them they need to help the Princess of Friendship. They are met by Mr. Gladmane and shown around his impress place of business. Fluttershy finds Flim and Flam and immediately sees their friendship problem. Apple Jack refuses to help the two and seeks out others who may need help. When they learn Mr. Gladmane is up to no good, Fluttershy and Apple Jack team up with Flim and Flam to bring out the truth in Las Pegasus.

Finally, Fluttershy has to take bunny Angel to Dr. Fauna when he has a little accident. The doctor’s office is bursting at the seams with animals that need tending. No one seems to know where they are all coming from and they won’t leave once they’ve been treated. It doesn’t take long before Fluttershy realizes she might have given Dr. Fauna so much praise and spread the word. The animals came and are feeling safe in her care. Fluttershy realizes that her dream is to open an animal sanctuary. All the ponies know someone who can help that dream come true.

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Hasbro Studios is an iconic brand with some of the best in animation and family programming with MY LITTLE PONY, and LITTLEST PET SHOP. Since its formation in 2009, Hasbro Studios has received seven Daytime Emmy’s!

SHOUT! Factory brings the best to fans offering up feature films, classic television series, animation and specials. For more of what they have to offer go to www.shoutfactory.com.

The DVD includes the episodes Green Isn’t Your Color, Flutter Brutter, Buckball Season, Viva Las Pegasus and Fluttershy Leans In. Also included is the Bonus Feature of a Sing-Along and trust me it is catchy and fun!

What else can possibly be said about these iconic ponies that hasn’t been said before? My family has been watching MY LITTLE PONY since my own girls were children (now are grown adults). The best part is watching my daughter’s daughter watch MY LITTLE PONY and play with the iconic toys. That is how amazing this show is and continues to be.

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With ever changing story lines, the MY LITTLE PONY universe grows, expands and we continue to embrace them. That is an accomplishment beyond any stretch of the imagination. To bring beloved characters further and further into our homes with love, family, color, light, and lessons – that is what quality family programming should be.

Get ready to go on Fluttershy’s adventure with MY LITTLE PONY Friendship is Magic: Fluttershy on DVD.

In the end – in the words of Fluttershy ‘sometimes you have to do things even though you might fail’!

 

 

Win a copy of MY LITTLE PONY Shutterfly for your own home entertainment library by visiting http://moviemaven.homestead.com to find out how!

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