Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Family Flicks

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Family Flicks

Article excerpt

Recommended for family viewing:

Angels in the Outfield (PG) - A solid ground-rule double of a movie. Mature themes (foster care for children, loss of parents to death and dereliction). The religious angle of heavenly angels who help the California Angels is handled with restraint. "Angels in the Outfield" captures the glory of the game better than any family-oriented flick since "The Sandlot."

Black Beauty (G) - Caroline Thompson's adaptation of the classic novel should appeal to the same audience that made "The Secret Garden" a surprise hit last summer. As in Anna Sewell's story, the tale of a horse's life is told from the animal's point of view. Lush, literate family entertainment; violence is limited to Black Beauty's whippings by uncaring masters, and those scenes carry a strong emotional punch. Sewell's message, that we treat people like animals and we don't treat animals well, should provide ample discussion fodder for parents and children.

The Lion King (G) - An unusually deep emotional experience for a 'toon, with issues of morality and maturity raised that should invite worthwhile family discussions. Some scary images. Mature themes (facing one's responsibilities, deadly jealousy, family betrayal, a near-Shakespearean sense of tragedy before the happy ending).

North (PG) - Rob Reiner's comic fantasy is gentle and harmless enough for younger children, with enough cultural reference gags to keep adults occupied. The film should also generate a discussion among parents and children about what makes a good parent, from both viewpoints. Eleven-year-old North (Elijah Wood) becomes a free agent looking for new parents and sparks a revolution among kids. The happy ending should smooth any ruffled feathers; a move in the right direction for families.

Recommended for family viewing, with reservations

The Client (PG-13) - Typical tension from author John Grisham, made more frightening for families by having a child as the target of mob killers and legal eagles. …

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