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Can My Kids Watch This Movie? Family Movie Guidance...For Parents.

Our parent movie reviews let you know which new releases to take your kids to and which ones you may want to hold off on.

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AndSoItGoes ChesapeakeFamilyMovieReviewKernel Rating (out of 5): whole-popcorn-kernalhalf-popcorn-kernal

MPAA Rating: PG-13       Length: 94 minutes

Age Appropriate For: 13+. The film is basically a senior citizen-starring romantic comedy, so teens could theoretically see it with parents or grandparents, but it’s more squarely aimed at an older audience. Some cursing, discussion of drug addition, some kissing, a couple of implied sex scenes, talk about sex, and racist jokes.  

Michael Douglas gives his grumpy, charming all in ‘And So It Goes,’ but Rob Reiner’s latest romantic comedy is tonally disjointed. Practically everything is thrown into the plot, from drug-addicted children to racist jokes, but it’s so shamelessly pandering to an older demographic that it’s never believable.

By Roxana Hadadi

Director Rob Reiner’s latest, “And So It Goes,” could be called “Rich White People Problems,” and no one would bat an eye. Everyone in the film is surprisingly self-involved; people make choices that have zero emotional sense; and everyone is throwing around cash figures in the millions with no qualms whatsoever. “And So It Goes” is supposed to be about how hard it is to start over when you’re older, either professionally or romantically, but that’s not what you’ll remember. The ignorance and opulence get those distinctions.

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BeginAgain ChesapeakeFamilyMovieReviewKernel Rating (out of 5): whole-popcorn-kernalwhole-popcorn-kernalwhole-popcorn-kernal

MPAA Rating: R       Length: 104 minutes

Age Appropriate For: 13+. The rating is primarily for cursing, of which there is a lot. Also some kissing, discussion of sex and romantic infidelity, and an alcoholic character who is working on getting his life back together. Overall, the ultimately inspirational film will be an acceptable watch for parents and teens who have a particularly musically minded relationship.

Keira Knightley goes in a different direction in the musical drama ‘Begin Again,’ which also stars a perfectly cast Mark Ruffalo. The film, which floats questions about the authenticity and personality of music, is mostly pleasant, even if all of its songs are forgettable.

By Roxana Hadadi

Who knew Keira Knightley could sing? Granted, she’s not Adele levels of amazing, but she’s certainly charming enough in “Begin Again,” the musical drama that takes her in a different direction than the period pieces she’s favored throughout her career. You can guess from the film’s original title—“Can A Song Save Your Life?”—that the film will veer into cutesiness, and it does, in expectedly cliché ways. The stereotypes “Begin Again” rejects, though, are what maintain its pleasantness.

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Hercules ChesapeakeFamilyMovieReviewKernel Rating (out of 5): whole-popcorn-kernalhalf-popcorn-kernal

MPAA Rating: PG-13       Length: 98 minutes

Age Appropriate For: 13+. Typical historical action movie stuff, like violence from clubs, arrows, spears, and hand-to-hand combat (lots of blood and corpses, but no outright gore); some anachronistic cursing; a woman’s butt and others running around skimpily dressed; and some slightly scary fantasy monsters, like a hydra and three-headed dog.

The second film this year focused on the legendary son of Zeus is actually based on a thoroughly researched graphic novel, but you wouldn’t know that from ‘Hercules.’ The Dwayne Johnson vehicle goes for the stereotypical action-movie route in every way it possibly can.

By Roxana Hadadi

Similarly themed films seem to come in twos. Last summer saw a pair of assaults on the White House (“White House Down” and “Olympus Has Fallen”), while this year is movies about Hercules, the legendary son of the god Zeus. This spring’s offering, “The Legend of Hercules,” starring Kellan Lutz, summarily flopped, but the Dwayne Johnson-starring “Hercules” doesn’t fare much better. There are brief moments of a better movie in here (a funnier one, and at least a more self-aware one), but director Brett Ratner is teasing us. He never fully veers from the formulaic route.

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