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SONIC THE HEDGEHOG

Sonic poster

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres this Friday with break-neck speed from director Jeff Fowler and Paramount Pictures comes a new meaning to the word fast provided by SONIC THE HEDGEHOG.

Tom Wachowski (James Marsden) is the local law in their small town where nothing really happens. When a letter arrives offering him a job in San Francisco, wife Maddie (Tika Sumpter) believes he will finally be happy with the life change. When she goes off to San Fran to look for a place to live, Tom is back on duty trying to figure out how to tell everyone.

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In the surrounding forest lives Sonic (Ben Schwartz), a blue alien who knows everything about Tom and pretty much everyone else. Trying to stay under the radar, imagine the surprise when a disturbing town power outage brings Sonic face-to-face with Tom! The rather unusual event also catches the attention of Dr. Ivo Robotnik (Jim Carrey) who isn’t about to let anything stop him from discovering the truth.

Using his uber technology, Robotnik finds himself at Tom’s doorstep and the two make it plain what their intentions are. Robotnik wants the fast-blue alien and Tom wants to protect Sonic from anyone getting their hands on hurting him. Making a run for it, it becomes clear that Sonic has to leave Earth but the only way to do that is by the pouch of rings that accidentally got sent to the top of a building in San Francisco.

It’s time for them to take a road trip and what happens along the way brings about learning for them both including a little fun. But they are always looking behind them to see how close the relentless Dr. Robotnik is because he isn’t at all about having fun – he’s about being in control.

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Tom and Sonic have a few tricks up their sleeve to give their nemesis something to think about!

Marsden as Tom is a small-town sheriff who doesn’t realize what kind of life that truly is. Meeting Sonic isn’t just about protecting an alien, their time together really gives him an opportunity to see the world in a different way – through Sonic’s eyes. Marsden is charming, sweet and patient (not sure I could be THAT patient) and doesn’t scare easily. Watching Marsden take on Robotnik is entertaining but then again, his whole character is.

Schwartz as the voice of Sonic is fast talking and fast on his feet. Most of us know the character of Sonic but don’t hear him in the video games (yes, I play video games!) so finally hearing him speak in the film is fun, silly (as my granddaughter says) and full of spunk and excitement.

Carrey as Dr. Robotnik is nothing short of stunning, hilarious and everything my family and I wanted to see. Having seen a sneak peek last year presented by Carrey himself, no one was going to tell me if the film was good, bad or indifferent – I was going to see it! This is a comic who has always made me and daughter Jenise laugh and that is saying something. From the very first we knew there was something unique about his humor and special about his ability to use facial expressions and timing. As Robotnik I laughed at his cutting (and admittedly sometimes adult humor) and now can’t imagine anybody else playing Robotnik (or Egg-man as the granddaughter prefers to call him).

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Sumpter as wife Maddie is the calm in the middle of the Sonic Storm. She supports whatever Tom wants to do but when she sees Sonic, the extra calm kicks in because she isn’t going to move from her spot until her questions are answered. Melody Niemann as JoJo is absolutely adorable and the reason behind one of Sonics iconic accessories. Shout out to Natasha Rothwell as Maddie’s sister Rachel because she is hilarious. Not exactly thrilled that her sister is married to Tom, she doesn’t miss an opportunity to throw her two cents in which is thrown back when Sonic is near!

Other cast include Tom Butler as Commander Walters, Frank Turner as Crazy Carl, Elfina Luk as Secretary of Homeland Security, Adam Pally as Billy Robb, Lee Majdoub as Agent Stone and Neal McDonough as Major Bennington.

Let me get this out of the way and move on, I am thrilled that they made the changes to Sonic as now he feels and looks more like the character as I thought he should look. He is edgy, really blue and, well, fast! Also, this is going to be a strictly liking the film or it not being on your film radar, it’s a simple as that.

Now, I taught my granddaughter to play the original Sega Sonic the Hedgehog and she picked up on it quick and learned all the characters without me saying a word! Now, she has her sonic pajamas, socks, stuffed doll and the most awesome sunglasses. It is hard to believe that my first experience with Sonic was a game played back in in 1991 taught to me by my sons. The following Christmas they got me a Sega system to play the games and – are you ready for this? – I still have it and it still works (are you reading this Sega?).

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So, to go see the film with my family was beyond fun, it was a great day at the theatre. Look, this isn’t rocket science, it is just an escape to the movies for families that want to do something fun together. The adults are going to be brought back to a pretty cool time in their then young lives and the kids are going to giggle at all the antics Sonic provides.

It is the reason we go to the movies as a family, there is something for everyone and with a run time of 99 minutes there isn’t a second of non-stop action. There are just silly laughs and a good time with the family.

In the end – when the world needs a hero…think fast!

JUMANJI: The Next Level Brings Another Adventure

Jumanji the next level cover

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres this week from writer/director Jake Kasdan and Columbia Pictures is the return for another adventure with JUMANJI: The Next Level.

It’s the holidays and the gang makes plans to return to Nora’s Diner for a bit of catching up. Bethany (Madison Iseman), Martha (Morgan Turner), Fridge (Ser’Darius Blain) and Spencer (Alex Wolff). Actually, Spencer is finding any way to avoid getting together at home with Mom (Marin Hinkle) and Grandpa Eddie (Danny DeVito) who is recovering from hip surgery.

The reason for seclusion is that Spencer and Martha have taken a break from their relationship and he’s having a hard time. So much so that he goes into the basement and finds a certain video game and does the unthinkable. Grandpa Eddie is dealing with his own grumpiness when friend Milo (Danny Glover) comes to visit but Eddie isn’t exactly having it.

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When the gang can’t reach Spencer, they head over to his house and meet Eddie and Milo and then hear a sound that stops them in their tracks. Running down to the basement, they realize that Spencer has jumped back into the game. The only thing to do is to go in after him, except this time there are a few changes they don’t see coming.

In the game the basic rules are the same but the game has changed! It is more challenging and the players are a tad different. Martha (Karen Gillan) keeps her character but Eddie (Dwayne Johnson) has a much bigger stature, Bethany (Jack Black) is back and Milo is Mouse Finbar (Kevin Hart). Confused yet? Well it gets better!

They begin searching for Spencer who is now Ming (Awkwafina) who is looking for a stone that will save the world but is being stopped by Jurgen the Brutal (Rory McCann). Getting it requires the help of Alex (Nick Jonas) who is happy to see everyone.

Now that all the players on in place, it’s time to put Jurgen in his place and return the beloved and precious stone before dinner time!

Johnson as Eddie gets a chance to be even more comedic than before. It is even more hilarious when you realize he is doing his best Danny DeVito Eddie. His flexing, jumping and stare into the abyss is full on fun and we’d pretty much expect nothing less from him. DeVito as the grumpy Eddie isn’t really into life and can’t seem to find a moment to be happy about. Becoming the player Eddie is the most fun he’s had in, well, forever.

Wolff as Spencer is having an early 20’s crisis and the only thing he can think to do is go somewhere where he felt special. This is a young man who didn’t think things through to well and when he shows up in the game as Ming, it’s a new character with new abilities. Awkwafina as Ming is hilarious as always and since her introduction to people in the film CRAZY RICH ASIANS, she has made a name for herself doing comedy but also can pull off true emotions when needed.

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Hart as Milo doesn’t understand what is happening except that he seems much more knowledgeable about language and animals. Hart doing Glover is probably the best I’ve seen and it just kept cracking me up. Glover as Milo wants to fix the friendship he has with Eddie and it’s not as if the grumpy guy is going to make it easy.

Black as Fridge isn’t happy about his less than perfect body and doesn’t understand why he can’t be the same character he was before. Black jumps into his role and I can see him playing any of them with ease. There is a scene with Martha that is pretty funny in the pool of change. Blain as Fridge is happy to see his friends but not so much when they have no choice but to return to the game to find Spencer.

Gillan as Martha is back in her shorts and a tank top making sure that she gets a chance to jump off things and flip around tree branches with ease. The comedy for her comes when trying to explain to Eddie and Milo that they are in a game and what the rules are. Iseman as Bethany is the monkey in the works and she has to turn to Alex (Colin Hanks) for help in a very brave way. Hanks as Alex has a small role but I’m always happy to see him.

Shout out to McCann as Jurgen the Brutal and I don’t want to say that it’s a bit of type casting but lets through it out there and see if it sticks. As the Hound in Game of Thrones he was loud, had no problem swinging a sword and was a tad frightening, hmmmm…sounds like Jurgen the Brutal. Who cares! It’s good to see him.

Other cast include Ashley Scott as Ashley, Rhys Darby as Nigel, Deobia Oparei as Gromm, Sarah Bennani as Andi Tow, Massi Furlan as Switchblade, Jared Hasmuk as Dagfin and Sal Longobardo as Tony.

JUMANJI: The Next Level is family fun and especially for those who love the idea of these actors in a video game. There is fun, humor, adventure and it’s all wrapped up in the story of family, friendship, loyalty, acceptance and fighting off bad guys with your best friends. Of course I am a fan of the Robin Williams version of JUMANJI and will always see that as the standard but at the same time it is easy to see why this generation is having such fun at the theatre.

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This version of the film has more characters than the 1995 JUMANJI and the comedy is sillier with Johnson and Hart at the helm. These two clearly share the same humor and their off screen friendship and Twitter ‘war’ adds to the charm of their film.

If you want to take a break from the crowds at the mall or the crowds pretty much anyway for the holidays and be taken away on a fun adventure, then JUMANI: The Next Level is the right film to see with the whole family. Make sure that bucket of popcorn is extra large!

In the end – it’s the very next level!

GO FISH is Animated About Saving the Ocean

Go Fish Cover
Jeri Jacquin
Coming to DVD from writer/director Sean Patrick O’Reilly, Arcana and Lionsgate comes a look and lesson from below the sea with GO FISH.
Alex the parrot fish (Sean Patrick O’Reilly) is the janitor of his fish town and happy with what he does. Also in their little fish village is sea horse Christine (Kathleen Bar), loner eel Eelanore (Asia Mattu), and Ed the blowfish (Tobias the Owl). It is Mary (voiced by Allison Wandzura) that discovers something wrong in the sea.
Calling it goop, fish are getting stuck in it and they want lion fish King Charles (Scott McNeil) to do something. Alex approaches the King’s assistant Paul for a meeting. The request is not well received as he gets a loud lecture about nothing happening and to keep his fish lips shut on the matter. That’s not good enough for Alex or his friends and a plan is formed.
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Upon the surface, a company called Quoquo Modo is drilling into the ocean floor. Callie (iJustine) loves her job and wants to make sure everything is done to keep the ocean safe. Dennis (Mark Hamill) is grumpier and less on the ball thinking that 100% no leaking doesn’t necessarily mean 100%.
Alex, Eelanore, Ed and Christine go out in search of the goop and meet a whole group of characters that just want to make their adventure a little more difficult. Maria the shark (Summer O’Reilly) and her friend Bernardo the tiger shark (Ron Perlman) are two particularly toothy characters that try to get in the way.
But once they find the goop, Alex and the gang try to get the attention of the humans in funny diving outfits to show them where there is a leak. Try as they might, the diver just shoo’s them away. The next step is an even bigger plan that gets the attention of everyone on the platform and just in time to save them all from a total ocean disaster.
O’Reilly as Alex is a spunky and happy parrot fish who truly does love his job as a janitor. Keeping everything nice and clean for his fellow fishes and friends is very important. When the goop appears, he knows that it will hurt all of them if they don’t at least try to stop it. He’s such a cutie of a fish!
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Bar as Christine is another happy sea creature and the cutest color of pink for a sea horse. Trying to grow up a little out of the shadow of her overbearing Mom and baby carrying Dad, going with Alex to find the goop is her chance to do just that. Mattu as Eelanore would prefer to be left alone in her comfy cave where she can watch the world go by or take a nap whenever she likes. Going with Alex may have started out as protection but quickly became a thrill for her first adventure.
Tobias as Ed is a little grumpy by that doesn’t stop him from being part of the gang to stop a disaster. I personally think he just liked being part of something bigger than his little puffy self. McNeil as King Charles is a fish on a power trip caring nothing for his ‘subjects’ but instead wielding his fishly powers.
iJustine as Callie is a happy person who really does love her job and wants everyone, above the water and below to be safe. When it becomes clear that both of those things are in jeopardy, Callie is on it to make it right. Hamill as Dennis is just a cranky unhappy employee who just isn’t on the ball when it comes to what’s best for everyone.
Other cast include Michelle O’Reilly as Joanne and Geoff Gustafson as Vincent.
Lionsgate is a global leader in motion picture production and distribution for theatres, television, home entertainment and more. Theatre franchises include THE HUNGER GAMES, and DIVERGENT along with JOHN WICK. Now, adding this film to its 16,000 motion picture and television titles you can see everything coming soon as well as available now at http://www.lionsgate.com.
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The DVD Special Features include ‘Go Fish’ (Side by Side) Music Video Sing-Along, The GO FISH Digital Comic Book and a GO FISH Fish Guide.
GO FISH is a very charming and educational look at life in the ocean. The animation is colorful and fun and in the mix of that is a story about how precious the eco-system is in the ocean. It shows how, if fish could talk (and maybe they do!), they could tell us when pipes are leaking or trash is choking them out. Explaining these things to younger children, GO FISH does so in a way that is relatable for them.
Yet, it’s also enjoyable for the adults as well and gives families something to talk about after the film. The Special Features of the DVD also provide some fun things to do together as a family. Whether it’s singing or learning about other fish, it is always a wonderful way to spend quality time together.
In the end – just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water – it really is!

THE ANGRY BIRDS 2 Brings More Giggles on Bluray

Angry Birds 2 Cover

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray/DVD, Digital and also available on 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack from director Thurop Van Orman and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment are our favorite birds with THE ANGRY BIRDS 2.

Everyone on Bird Island is in a pretty good place since Red (Jason Sudekis) has made a name for himself as a hero. Making sure the pigs stay on their island is a full time job and it comes with some adulation that Red has come to like.

Then, the green pigs on Piggy Island are being bombarded with, well, ice balls! Needing help, they reach out to Red and the other birds to see if they want to help find out what is going on. At first Red isn’t having it but when Leonard (Bill Hader) decides to sneak in to see the birds and explain what is happening.

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They talk to Mighty Eagle (Peter Dinklage) who discovers that his ex-gal Zeta (Leslie Jones) is the one responsible for the ice bombs. Seems she isn’t happy being stuck on the cold Eagle Island and she is going to make sure that she gets the sun in her life again!

Now Red, Leonard, Chuck (Josh Gad) and sister Silver (Rachel Bloom) get to Eagle Island only to discover something more sinister. Zeta has created lava ice balls and plans to destroy both islands. Red thinks he can handle everything on his own until, well, he can’t realizing that he needs all his friends to save their homes.

Sudekis as Red still has issues of not being liked by everybody and thinks he needs to continue to be a solo hero in order to keep his status. Hader as Leonard makes a daring move in asking for the birds help to stop the craziness that is plaguing them both. These two characters may always be after each other but together they are pretty darn funny.

Dinklage as Mighty Eagle likes his solitude and perch high up on the island, when that is threatened you’d think he’d help right? Right? Jones as Zeta is an angry eagle who is not only smart but really smart. A combination of a hurt heart and brains can be dangerous for everyone around her.

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Gad as Chuck is bouncy and fast! This actor has made quite a name for himself playing animated characters and I don’t mind one darn bit. Bloom as his sister Silver is equally as smart as Zeta but doesn’t have the broken heart to deal with. She doesn’t see herself and Red as compatible but there is a weird attraction if they can just get past the “destruction of their world” thing.

Other cast include Awkwafina as Courtney, Sterling K. Brown as Garry, Eugenio Derbez as Glenn, Tiffany Haddish as Debbie, Danny McBride as Bomb, Peter Davidson as Jerry, Dove Cameron as Ella, and Maya Rudolph as Matilda.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment encompasses motion picture production for television, digital content and theater releases. The studios include Columbia Pictures, Screen Gems, TriStar Pictures, Sony Pictures Animation, Stage 6 Films and Sony Picture Classics. To see what is coming to theaters and to home entertainment please visit www.sonypictures.com.

The Bluray and Digital Bonus Features include All New Mini Movie!, 6 Classic Hatchling Mini Movies, DIY Family Fun with Hangry Birds: Popcorn Balls, Smarty Birds: Crafty Volcano, Crafty Birds: Pig Snot!, Bird Watching, Meet the New Birds & Pigs, Hatching to Hatchlings, Flocking Together: Making the Angry Birds Movie 2, Happy Thanks-pigging and Jingle Birds: A Holiday Song from the Cast of Angry Birds 2.

THE ANGRY BIRDS 2 is very colorful, full of action and both kids and adults will find it very funny. The story is interesting in that the birds and pigs, who are always trying to one up each other with pranks, finally have a reason to work together – to save their islands.

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Discovering a third island of Eagles who are kind of angry about being so cold is the right ingredient to discover more about these characters, especially Mighty Eagle. It’s a nice lesson for the kids to learn how to get along with everybody once you understand them.

In the end – this summer winter is coming!

Fast & Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW Bring Action to Bluray and 4K Ultra

Hobbs and Shaw Cover
Jeri Jacquin
This week Bluray/DVD, Digital Code and also available on 4K Ultra HD from director David Leitch and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment comes the double team of action with Fast & Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW.
Trying to obtain a virus that could kill people all over the world, MI6 Agent Hattie Shaw (Vanessa Kirby) is sent in with other agents. What they couldn’t have foreseen is Brixton Lore (Idris Elba) arriving to steal the virus for himself. Hattie has no choice but to get the virus out the only way possible.
Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) is notified that he will be working with someone else on the case. Imagine his surprise when it turns out to be Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson)! They are not thrilled to see one another in the slightest and make it known as loudly and verbally as possible.
When Hattie hits the news that she is a rogue agent, Hobbs and Shaw are told they need to find her and both go about it in their own way. When she is finally captured it doesn’t take long before Brixton breaks the door down to take her away. She is now the virus and someone powerful wants her.
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After getting her back, the only way save her is to find Professor Andreiko (Eddie Marsan) who created the virus. There is a machine that can help retrieve it but the company Etheon has it which means finding a way inside, get it and get away and – it’s in the Ukraine.
Time isn’t something these three have and Brixton isn’t about to stop till he gets what he wants. That means it’s time to get off the grid and go someplace no one would think to look and much to Hobbs’ dismay its home in Samoa.
Getting his family and disgruntled brother Jonah (Cliff Curtis) to help proves to be difficult, but then again even when family is a little upset – no one messes with them. It’s time to let the enemy know that you can’t get past Mama!
Now it’s time to go old school and take down Brixton!
Johnson as Hobbs is funny, charming, and everything we have come to expect from an action hero. There is something absolutely fantastic about the way Johnson handles his roles to the point where he makes it all look so darn easy. This time he gets a chance to bring in his own heritage in a way of family and the strength of those who will stand up for you even if they only have large clubs to do it with.
Statham as Shaw can’t help but bring his driving skills to bear in this film. Always behind the wheel, he doesn’t bat an eye when turning corners like they are on rails and jumping anything that stands in his way. Playing opposite Johnson, these two are meant to be in action films together because as much as the characters think they are different, lets be honest they are pretty much the same. They are full of quickness, silliness, brotherly quarreling and everything that goes with this twisted friendship.
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Kirby as Hattie is very smart, doesn’t hesitate to act when the moment is right and has to deal with Hobbs and Shaw like a babysitter. I enjoyed her character in that she actually is a seriously more than capable agent and slick as they come and although her ‘wards’ are necessary they sort of aren’t.
Elba as Brixton is a genetically modified man who has been changed by the voice behind Etheon. A history with Shaw that is nothing short of lethal, Brixton is a man who feels superhuman and has no trouble letting everyone know that the human race itself is weak. Elba is deliciously evil and there isn’t a dang thing wrong with that!
Other cast include: Lori Tuisano as Sefina, John Tui as Kal, Joshua Mauga as Timo, Joe Anoa’I as Mateo, Rob Delaney as Agent Loeb, Alex King at Lt. Grapefruit, Eliana Sua as Sam, Eiza Gonzalez as Madam M and Helen Mirren as Queenie. Also, look for a surprise that will make you laugh and cheer!
Universal Pictures Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us to all experience and re-experience in our own home theaters. There are film of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.
There are 80+ minutes of Bonus Features including Alternate Opening and Deleted Scenes and even more content not seen in theatres! You want more? Well, how about Johnson & Statham: Hobbs & Shaw, Progress of a Fight Scene with Director David Leitch, Practical Action, The Bad Guy, The Sister, The Hobbs Family Tree, The Matriarch, New Friends, Elevator Action, Stunt Show and Tell, Keeping it in the Family: A Conversation with Roman and Dwayne, Blind Fury, Dwayne and Hobbs: Love at First Bite and Feature Commentary with Director David Leitch.
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MOVIES ANYWHERE gives viewers the ability to download the Movies Anywhere App. With that you can view films by downloading or streaming to your favorite device using a Digital Code. For more information on Movies Anywhere please visit www.MoviesAnywhere.com.
Fast and Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW is 135 minute thrill ride of action, crazy humor and everything fans have come to expect from the F&F franchise. You can help but cheer, laugh and cheer even more as the story draws to a close. It is clear that Johnson and Statham have a chemistry that everyone watching absolutely loved. I kinda liked it myself!
There are a few surprises that bring even more laughs and I think I was grinning from ear to ear a lot. That is saying something. So if you are looking for a reason to spend quality time with two pretty awesome dudes, then join Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham for a ride that only these two can provide with Fast and Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW.
In the end – they may not like each other but they dislike bad guys even more!

CINDERELLA and the SECRET PRINCE Delight on DVD

Cinderella cover

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to DVD from directors Lynne Southerland and Paulette Victor-Lifton and SHOUT! Kids Factory comes a new twist to a fairytale we all know as CINDERELLA and the SECRET PRINCE.

Ella (Cassandra Lee Morris) is taking care of her step-mother and two step-sisters but also of the creatures that live in the home. Her three furry mice friends, Alex (Chris Niosi), Manny (R. Martin Klein) and Walt (Tony Azzolino) have started her day with a little bit of trouble in the kitchen. It doesn’t last long when it is announced that there is to be a ball at the castle where the prince is looking for a wife.

No interest in it at all, Ella is encouraged by the mice to attend and take a chance that she might be the next princess to the kingdom. Her thoughts turn to what to wear when it is suggested that they seek out the fairy godmother who lives in the woods for guidance. Once there, they can’t find the fairy but instead her apprentice named Crystal (Kirsten Day). At first she doesn’t seem interested but then realizes it’s much more fun than standing around doing nothing.

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At the ball she dances with the prince but the mice and Crystal seek out the kitchen. Instead they find that there is a Witch (Wendee Lee) practicing evil! In fact they discover that Alex isn’t really a mouse – he is the rightful prince to the kingdom. Telling Ella what is happening they decide to find the one thing that could restore Alex and reclaim the kingdom from evil.

They are going to have to act fast because the Witch isn’t about to give up quite so easily!

Morris as Ella lends her voice to this delightful character who finds herself on an adventure of a lifetime. Ella is fun, has a sense of humor but also knows when an injustice has been done and wants to help make it right. There is nothing better than a strong young girl who sees her world as an opportunity to do right by all.

Niosi as Alex is a young man who has had his life taken by the greed of another. It is meeting Ella that sets in motion all the decisions he makes and the ultimate decision that may change everything he has come to love.

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Klein and Azzolino as Manny and Walt are charming, funny, and have no problem admitting when they aren’t comfortable doing something. Of course if there are snacks involved you can get a little more out of them!

Day as Crystal doesn’t start off as the happiest of people as she is looking for her mentor with no luck. Understanding that she can be friends with Ella, Alex, Manny and Walt opens up the doors for relationships she has been lacking and becomes a trusted friend. Lee as the Witch is scary and, well, for a better term a pretty nasty person. Taking away Alex’s life for her own greed certainly qualifies as a nasty person but she goes after them all to make sure she keeps what she thinks is hers.

Other cast include Stephen Mendel as Olaf, Terrence Stone as the Eagle and Stephanie Sanditz as Step-mother.

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.

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CINDERELLA and the SECRET PRINCE is heartwarming, entertaining, funny and, of course, enchanting. This is a twist on the classic story with a witch that makes Ella’s step-mother seem tame by comparison. The focus clearly is on Ella’s friendships and her meeting the mouse-prince. Their goal is to make things right in a world that has been forced into evil by someone the prince trusted.

It is a story of friendship, loyalty, adventure, doing right no matter the cost and a little bit of love as well. That is why families enjoy these story’s. We want to sit with our family and enjoy a film that is fun but also teaches lessons that everyone can embrace.

In the end – it is a tale of friendship and love wrapped in magic!

TOY STORY 4 Reunited Our Favorite Friends

toy story 4 cover
Jeri Jacquin
Coming to Bluray, DVD and Digital Code from director Josh Cooley, Pixar Animated Studios and Walt Disney Pictures Home Entertainment brings back our friends for TOY STORY 4.
Sheriff Woody (Tom Hanks), Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) and the gang are still living with Bonnie. As time has gone on, Woody has found himself spending more time in the closet and less time with Bonnie. Yet Buzz, Jessie (Joan Cusack), Dolly (Bonnie Hunt), Trixie (Kristen Schaal), Rex, (Wallace Shawn), Hamm (John Ratzenberger), Slinky Dog (Blake Clark), Mr. Potato Head (Don Rickles), Mrs. Potato Head (Estelle Harris) and the gang are still supportive of Woody.
But he has other things to worry about when Bonnie (Madeleine McGraw) is upset about going off to kindergarten. Taking the initiative, Woody decides to make sure she has a good day! When things don’t seem to be going in that direction, he helps Bonnie create a new friend, Forky (Tony Hale) and she is delighted.
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Before the real school year starts, Mom and Dad decide it’s time to go on a little road trip. The toy-gang is thrilled as well and wait to be packed into the RV for a little adventure. When Forky escapes the RV, Woody tells he gang he will meet them at the RV park in the next town while he goes off to settle their new toy friend down a bit.
It gives time for Woody and Forky to bond as the sheriff gets time to explain the situation to him. Getting close to the RV park, Woody sees something in an antique store window. A lamp that his friend Bo Peep (Annie Potts) once called her home with the three sheep Billy, Goat and Gruff. Taking a small detour to find out if she is in the shop, he and Forky meet Gabby Gabby (Christina Hendricks) who only wants one thing from Woody!
When she doesn’t get it, Gabby Gabby takes Forky as hostage at the same time Woody finds Bo Peep. Now she needs to bring her friends to help including Duke Caboom (Keanu Reeves) because Bonnie and her parents are about to leave the RV park and not everyone is aboard. Buzz jumps into action to help as the gang in the RV make a little plan of their own.
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It’s pretty much help your friends, help your new friends and make a decision that will change the lives of everybody all while getting back to Bonnie.
Because that’s what friends do for one another!
Hanks as Woody will now and forever be considered a beloved icon in both movies and animation. He has brought all of us so much love and teachable lessons in the character of Sheriff Woody. From the very first TOY STORY in 1995, I knew this was going to be a ride from adults to children, little did I know now that it would include grandchildren. Woody can be found in kids’ rooms still because he is the friend we all wish we could have for a lifetime.
Allen as Buzz is once again the lighthearted friend who tries to keep Woody’s spirits up and when it comes time to bring him home, it is Buzz who go to find him. They are an unbeatable pair and even if he is still a little confused sometimes, he doesn’t let that stop him from hearing his own ‘inner voice’.
Potts as Bo Peep is sweet, strong and has a little fight in her swagger. She has a story to tell and it is about where she has been and how she now sees the world. McGraw as Bonnie is such a young girl learning to be outside of her bedroom and toy world into something much bigger – but she still needs her toy friends.
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Cusack, Hunt, Schaal, Shawn, Ratzenberger, Benson, Clark, Rickles, Harris return as their respective and beloved characters and, of course, we wouldn’t have it any other way. As much as there wouldn’t be a TOY STORY without Woody and Buzz, there equally wouldn’t be a Woody and Buzz without Jessie, Dolly, Rex, Hamm, Barbie and the Potato Heads.
Hendricks as Gabby Gabby can be a little bit off putting and a tad-bit like Lotso from TOY STORY 3 in that she wants to be large and in charge. It is clear that there are deeper issues and Woody needs to get to the bottom of it.
Reeves as Duke Caboom may have only been in the film briefly but man did he make me laugh! This was a fantastic chance for Reeves to show his comedic side in a way that most would see as unexpected and awesome at the same time.
Other cast include Bill Hader as Axel the Carnie, Ally Maki as Giggle McDimples, Jay Hernandez as Bonnie’s Dad, Lori Alan as Bonnie’s Mom, Emily Davis as Billy/Goat/Gruff, Carl Weathers as Combat Carls, Jeff Garlin as Buttercup, Jordan Peele as Bunny Timothy, Dalton as Mr. Pricklepants, Jodie Benson as Barbie, Jeff Pidgeon as Aliens, and especially Mel Brooks as Melephant Brooks, Carol Burnett as Chairol Burnett, Betty White as Bitey White and Carl Reiner as Carl. Reineroceros.
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 Bonus Extras include Deleted Scenes, Bo Rebooted – Bo Peep is Back and Stronger Than Ever, Toy Stories – Cast and Crew Remember Their Beloved Childhood Toys, Woody & Buzz – A Look Back At A Legendary Friendship, Toy Box – Meet the New Cast of Characters, Let’s Ride! With Ally Maki – A Humorous Lesson in Voice Recording AND MORE!
MOVIES ANYWHERE gives viewers the ability to download the Movies Anywhere App. With that you can view films by downloading or streaming to your favorite device using a Digital Code. For more information on Movies Anywhere please visit www.MoviesAnywhere.com.
TOY STORY 4 is a chance for the toys themselves to actually have an adventure that is about – well – them! Of course there is the continuing story of Bonnie but it is also about how these toys are still caring of one another.
They have their own attachments and feelings about the years they have spent together and TOY STORY 4 has a chance to tell that side of it all and do so in a way that brings closure we didn’t even know we needed. The best part is that now we can all watch again and again toys that have become part of our lives as much as Andy and Bonnie’s. Something tells me they don’t mind.
In the end – on the road of life there are old friends, new friends and stories that will change you forever!

Fast & Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW

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Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres from director David Leitch and Universal Pictures comes the double team of action with Fast & Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW.

Trying to obtain a virus that could kill people all over the world, MI6 Agent Hattie Shaw (Vanessa Kirby) is sent in with other agents. What they couldn’t have foreseen is Brixton Lore (Idris Elba) arriving to steal the virus for himself. Hattie has no choice but to get the virus out the only way possible.

Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) is notified that he will be working with someone else on the case. Imagine his surprise when it turns out to be Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson)! They are not thrilled to see one another in the slightest and make it known as loudly and verbally as possible.

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When Hattie hits the news that she is a rogue agent, Hobbs and Shaw are told they need to find her and both go about it in their own way. When she is finally captured it doesn’t take long before Brixton breaks the door down to take her away. She is now the virus and someone powerful wants her.

After getting her back, the only way save her is to find Professor Andreiko (Eddie Marsan) who created the virus. There is a machine that can help retrieve it but the company Etheon has it which means finding a way inside, get it and get away and – it’s in the Ukraine.

Time isn’t something these three have and Brixton isn’t about to stop till he gets what he wants. That means it’s time to get off the grid and go someplace no one would think to look and much to Hobbs’ dismay its home in Samoa.

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Getting his family and disgruntled brother Jonah (Cliff Curtis) to help proves to be difficult, but then again even when family is a little upset – no one messes with them. It’s time to let the enemy know that you can’t get past Mama!

Now it’s time to go old school and take down Brixton!

Johnson as Hobbs is funny, charming, and everything we have come to expect from an action hero. There is something absolutely fantastic about the way Johnson handles his roles to the point where he makes it all look so darn easy. This time he gets a chance to bring in his own heritage in a way of family and the strength of those who will stand up for you even if they only have large clubs to do it with.

Statham as Shaw can’t help but bring his driving skills to bear in this film. Always behind the wheel, he doesn’t bat an eye when turning corners like they are on rails and jumping anything that stands in his way. Playing opposite Johnson, these two are meant to be in action films together because as much as the characters think they are different, lets be honest they are pretty much the same. They are full of quickness, silliness, brotherly quarreling and everything that goes with this twisted friendship.

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Kirby as Hattie is very smart, doesn’t hesitate to act when the moment is right and has to deal with Hobbs and Shaw like a babysitter. I enjoyed her character in that she actually is a seriously more than capable agent and slick as they come and although her ‘wards’ are necessary they sort of aren’t.

Elba as Brixton is a genetically modified man who has been changed by the voice behind Etheon. A history with Shaw that is nothing short of lethal, Brixton is a man who feels superhuman and has no trouble letting everyone know that the human race itself is weak. Elba is deliciously evil and there isn’t a dang thing wrong with that!

Other cast include: Lori Tuisano as Sefina, John Tui as Kal, Joshua Mauga as Timo, Joe Anoa’I as Mateo, Rob Delaney as Agent Loeb, Alex King at Lt. Grapefruit, Eliana Sua as Sam, Eiza Gonzalez as Madam M and Helen Mirren as Queenie. Also, look for a surprise that will make you laugh and cheer!

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Fast and Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW is 135 minute thrill ride of action, crazy humor and everything fans have come to expect from the F&F franchise. Everyone in the audience was cheering, laughing and cheering even more as the film drew to a close. It is clear that Johnson and Statham have a chemistry that everyone watching absolutely loved. I kinda liked it myself!

There are a few surprises that bring even more laughs and I think I was grinning from ear to ear a lot. That is saying something. So if you are looking for a reason to spend quality time in a theatre seat then join Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham for a ride that only these two can provide with Fast and Furious Presents: HOBBS & SHAW.

In the end – they may not like each other but they dislike bad guys even more!

THE JUNGLE BUNCH Brings Fun and Family to DVD

jungle bunch

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to DVD from writer/director David Alaux and SHOUT! Kids Factory is the story of family, friendship and protecting the home of THE JUNGLE BUNCH.

It is another day in the jungle or is it? Tony the sloth (Frantz Confiac), Natasha the tiger (Marie-Christine Darah), Goliath the rhino (Alain Dorval) and Ricky the porcupine (also called The Champs) are chasing Igor the koala (Richard Darbois) through the jungle. Igor is up to no good and attempting to ruin the jungle for all who live their.

When he succeeds all the animals must find their own way. Natasha finds herself the foster-mother of Maurice (Philippe Bozo), a young penguin who takes to jungle life. Her ward has plans of his own as he grows to create a new team that fights for justice.

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Mom Natasha isn’t too thrilled about Maurice’s goal but he sets out into the jungle to find others who want to be aprt of it. He brings his team including Junior the fish, Miguel the gorilla (Pascal Casanova), Gilbert the tarsier (Laurent Morteau) and Batricia the bat (Celine Montsarrat) and call themselves ‘The Jungle Bunch’.

Igor has been busy as well on his secluded island, he wants to get back and take on The Champs once again. When he discovers there is another justice fighting team in town he is equally thrilled. Especially when he learns Maurice is Natasha’s son.

The Jungle Bunch knows their new mission is to save the jungle and everything they love about their home. When Igor kidnaps Junior, it is Natasha that wants to put The Champs back together to save him. Feeling left out, Maurice realizes that he must do what ever it takes to rescue his family but with a little help from his friends.

Other characters include Emmanuel Curtil as Al the Toad, Paul Borne by Bob the Toad, Michel Mella as Fred the warthog, Jean-Philippe Puymartin as Snake, Barbara Tissier as Ping, and Alexis Tomassian as Pong.

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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.

The characters are all delightful and, well, animated! This is a story about many things but mainly that differences don’t seem to matter one bit to these jungle creatures. They love who they love and that includes Natasha taking in Maurice and Maurice taking in Junior.

The story of Igor being cast out because of the harm he wants to cause is believable in that the other animals would ban together to put him in his place. There is also a generational issue that I found a great theme to talk about. Natasha protecting her son caused her to say things that she should have thought about more carefully. Taking to heart the words of his mother was tough and a lesson to parents – even parents who have grown children.

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It is a treasure when there is an animated film that actually brings family and community together like THE JUNGLE BUNCH. The actors truly bring the animals to life with their vocal performances. Oh don’t worry, there is plenty of fun to be had and my own family laughed a lot at the antics.

So gather up your own jungle herd with a big bowl of popcorn and enjoy a film that brings so much of everything we love animated films for!

In the end – things are getting wild!

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