Tara McNamara's Movie Blog Posts



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Film Mom: Every Day Is Career Day at the Movies

By: Tara McNamara on August 9, 2012 at 2:11PM Comments

Opening new worlds in the way professions are portrayed onscreen is one of the undervalued components of movies. Kids can get a glimpse of what it might be like to work as an astronaut, an architect, a superhero or a spy.

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'Wimpy Kid,' 'Timothy Green,' 'ParaNorman' - Why We Love Underdogs

By: Tara McNamara on August 2, 2012 at 12:41PM Comments

In a summer full of superheroes and studly Olympians, it’s easy to forget that people love an underdog. Never fear, Hollywood is here to remind you. It’s satisfying to root for dorks and screw-ups because, deep down, most of us see ourselves in the same light. We know our own most awkward moments and, of course, the most awkward age is tweendom.

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Spider-Man: A Superhero for Millennials

By: Tara McNamara on July 5, 2012 at 10:31AM Comments (1)

Generation Meh’s embrace of the superhero movie is starting to get under my skin. The superhero movie is always about one man/god/alien whom the entire country relies upon to protect, defend and save them. If the pulse of a generation can be ascertained by the media it consumes, then our country may well be in trouble....

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Crossing the Line: Marijuana in PG-13 Movies

By: Tara McNamara on June 28, 2012 at 11:32AM Comments (8)

Marijuana depicted as a tool to strengthen relationships isn’t a new idea but it is usually rare in the PG-13 world. This Friday’s People Like Us features a scene where the strained relationship between a mother and her son is healed as the two smoke the family’s late patriarch’s medicinal marijuana together. How is glamorizing illegal drug acceptable for teens?

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Mirror Mirror on the Wall, Who Is the Bravest One of All?

By: Tara McNamara on June 21, 2012 at 11:23AM Comments (1)

Much has been made of Brave’s "warrior princess," who marks the first female heroine in Pixar history, but I must say Merida is much more Ariel than Joan of Arc. Surely there are better examples to share with our daughters. Here are five characters from the Disney vault.

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Do Kids Look Up to Adam Sandler and Think ‘That’s My Boy’?

By: Tara McNamara on June 14, 2012 at 10:07AM Comments (3)

The bread and butter for Adam Sandler isn't in being a versatile actor, it’s being a comic with a point of view that carries over from film to film. The result is that his mature-content films may not be directly advertised to kids, but his sheer presence is, in essence, marketing to the tween fanbase he's cultivated. At least with That’s My Boy, you’ve been forewarned.

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The Summer of Chris Hemsworth

By: Tara McNamara on May 31, 2012 at 11:14AM Comments (2)

From Cabin in the Woods to The Avengers and the upcoming Snow White and the Huntsman, the summer is full of Chris Hemsworth... and that's not a bad thing.

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From 'Men in Black 3' to 'Total Recall': The Summer’s Space Stories

By: Tara McNamara on May 24, 2012 at 11:07AM Comments (3)

Hollywood is in the throes of an alien invasion. Summer’s only just started, and this weekend’s Men in Black 3 is the third alien movie in four weeks. Why, exactly, do filmmakers love making movies about extra-terrestrials?

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Movies from Board Games – What's to Come…or Not

By: Tara McNamara on May 17, 2012 at 10:57AM Comments (6)

Battleship is this summer's Transformers, and I mean that literally. Not only do both feature aliens with metal-like machinery which changes from mode of transportation into active weaponry, but they are also Hasbro toys turned into over-the-top, profanity-laden action films aimed at teen boys.

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Tim & Johnny's Greatest Hits: Which to Watch with Your Kids

By: Tara McNamara on May 10, 2012 at 10:29AM Comments (1)

Director Tim Burton and movie star Johnny Depp may be middle-aged men but their movies indicate they have the souls of teenagers. Find out three of their movies that kids can enjoy as well as a trio of movies you should see in theaters this weekend.

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The Avengers Put the "Action" in Action Figure

By: Tara McNamara on May 3, 2012 at 9:34AM Comments (1)

The Avengers, which is the ultimate superhero movie – is a film fanboys, moviegoers, kids and parents can all love without reservation. Director Joss Whedon manages the impossible: he puts all of these unbelievable characters of lore into our modern-day world in a way that’s believable, but not realistic – an important distinction to parents.

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The Best Summer Movies for Kids of All Ages

By: Tara McNamara on April 26, 2012 at 11:30AM Comments

No school for three months means parents have to find ways to entertain bored kids. Luckily, the movie industry is here to help. Check out Fandango’s Summer Movie Calendar for Parents – make plans now...

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Rated Arrrgh: Pirates in Kids Movies

By: Tara McNamara on April 19, 2012 at 10:21AM Comments (1)

Although pirates in the movies can be murderers, rogues and true criminal miscreants, somehow through the years they have also become kid-friendly rascals who are just as funny as they are adorable.

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Nature Films: The Best Picks for Your Kids

By: Tara McNamara on April 12, 2012 at 3:41PM Comments

Filmmakers are learning what is entertaining to kids versus adults. Every year, the movies are getting better. Disneynature's Chimpanzee about a baby chimp trying to find his place in his tribe should be the new standard for nature docs. What are some of your favorites?

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Why Hollywood Loves Fairy Tales

By: Tara McNamara on March 28, 2012 at 3:55PM Comments

Thanks to the massive worldwide success of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland a few years ago (it’s one of the top 10 highest grossing movies of all time), many filmmakers are cracking open the classic and copyright-free children’s fables to retell their stories in a fresh way. Hollywood likes to reinvent fairy tales for the same reason it likes to make sequels: it’s an easy way to sell tickets.

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