Family Movie Night


by Karyn Bowman


There has been one movie that the kids have been clamoring to see in the last month and that is Dolphin Tale.


Earlier this school year, my youngest son got a book from the library about the movie. We might have even watched a YouTube video or two about this story. But once the movie was on the shelf at our little grocery store, the pleading began.


As far as I can tell, I was not alone. For the first few weeks, every time I went to rent a movie Dolphin Tale was not there. We had to make do with Green Lantern one week and Kung Fu Panda Two another. It is not that we don’t like Po or that either of these movies are not enjoyable.


The boy wanted Dolphin Tale. So last week we finally watched it. I got lucky and grabbed it before anyone else could.


The story is about a young dolphin that gets caught in a crab trap. She is found on the beach by a fisherman and a young boy. Nathan Gamble plays the boy and uses a pocket knife to carefully removes the trap and the ropes of the dolphin. Help comes in the form of Harry Connick Jr. who takes the sea mammal to his marine life hospital.


Gamble has to go to summer school every day. But as soon as school is over, he runs to the hospital. The first time he sneaks in so he can see how the dolphin is doing. Of course, he is discovered and asked to come back every day. It seems that the dolphin bonded with the boy.


Of course, there is a sad back story for the boy. As it turns out, the doc and his daughter, who is the same age as the boy, have a sad back story as well. During the course of our story another sad thing occurs. But instead of being a bad thing, the sad occurrence leads to a good thing in a number of ways.


Usually at this point of a review, I tell you to watch out for the usual traps of a movie like this. Couples form and have disagreements for stupid reasons. Everything gets all matchy-matchy. However, this movie does not go there. The writers walk away from the usual path.


The problem in this case is that there is no money for the hospital/marine museum. The board is being forced to close the building and sell the land to a developer. So the boy figures out a way to raise money. And he finds a way to pass summer school. In the end people are happy, the dolphin has been given a new lease on life, and we get to watch Morgan Freeman breeze his way through another wonderful role.


At the end of the night, parents and kids were happy with the movie selection. And that was a very good thing.


Until next year, see you in the rental aisle.