Family Movie Night


by Karyn Bowman


The other day, we were at a party talking to people about streaming video.


They liked it for the ease and convenience of not having to go anywhere for a movie, especially if they remember at 8 in the evening. But then the wife said something I found interesting.


She stated she missed going to a video store and walking through the racks to find a movie. I couldn’t agree more because there is something to touching and feeling a movie box. I love reading the descriptions on the back, looking the pictures and seeing who is in the movie. I have stumbled on great movies because I was walking through the aisles, not knowing what I really wanted.


Streaming is easy, takes one errand off the list of things to do. That can be great when you have kids who cannot handle more than three stops before they get a treat. But there is something lost in not seeing all of the choice out there on a wall in front of your face.

What do you think about streaming?


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This week my list of movies to see has just gotten longer with the release of One For the Money starring Katherine Heigl in the adaptation of the Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series. The premise is that Plum becomes a bail bonds man after losing her job, moving back in with her parents, and recovering from a nasty divorce.


I know what the critics have said about this movie, I know it is bad. But sometimes a bad movie has its place – to laugh at its stupidity, to smile at the bad jokes, to go along gamely with the actors who know the movie is bad but decided to have fun with it. I love the smile on Heigl’s face as she brings in a guy who insists on being naked because “the ‘boys’ need air.”


As you can guess, this one is not for family viewing.


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How lucky for us that a good anime, family-friendly film has just been released to the home market. We saw The Secret World of Arrietty at the theater and loved it. The story is about little people who live in our world and take what they need but not in great amounts so it will not be discovered. It is based on the story of The Borrowers. This movie is suitable for children as young as kindergarten-age and their older siblings.


In this movie, Arrietty is a 14-year-old girl who is about to learn to art of borrowing from her father. The house that they live in has been inhabited only by a housekeeper. But now a boy, resting before major surgery, is moving in. And when he discovers Arrietty one night, her world faces major challenges.


This movie comes from the studios of Hayao Miyazaki, a film-making master.  Many of his techniques are employed in this movie with beautiful animation, solid storytelling in a manner that is not rushed. And the voice over work by Amy Poehler, Will Arnett, Bridget Mendler, David Hendrie and Carol Burnett are perfect for their characters.



Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.