Roughly half of my friends have toddlers. As a result, I spend a fair bit of my time interacting with tiny humans. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that kids friggin love movies. They go absolutely bananas for a movie they really like, and they can watch the same one over and over and over (and over and over) again. Sometimes, if they’re tech savvy enough, they’ll watch the same scene or musical number on repeat. It kind of sucks for adults in the room, but you’ve got to admire their dedication.
If there’s any movie capable of sparing parents from yet another rendition of Let It Go, it’s Disney’s Moana. This movie is actually really cute, and the music is pretty dang catchy. I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ll sing along. I am, however, a little ashamed to admit that the kids in the room usually shout “No!” and put their hands on my mouth to silence me. We can’t all be gifted vocalists, and the musical numbers in Moana are so upbeat and fun that it’s hard to resist the urge. The story really drives home some good points about identity and knowing who you are, which I think is a great theme for a kid’s movie (and, honestly, might not go amiss with an older crowd either).
My second movie rec has less universal appeal, and I’m not recommending it for the little ones. Coraline is a perfect spooky movie for your slightly older kiddos. It’s based on a novella of the same name by Neil Gaiman (one of my favorite authors), and directed by Henry Selick (the same guy who directed The Nightmare Before Christmas and James and The Giant Peach). As an added bonus, Coraline is somewhat lighter on the musical numbers. That’s not to say they’re totally absent, they’re just less in-your-face than those seen in Frozen or Moana.
Both films are entertaining, family fun. Of course, you don’t need the pressure of tiny humans to enjoy a film targeted for children. As much as I love my psychological thrillers and emotional dramas, sometimes it’s nice to just kick back with a feel-good film that doesn’t leave me emotionally devastated afterwards. Coraline and Moana are both great films for your kids (and you) to settle in and watch.