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Popcorn Parents - Family Movie Reviews

Family Movie Review: The Park Bench (PG)

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

MPAA Rating: PG        Length: 88 minutes

Age Appropriate For: 13+. Pretty standard romantic comedy stuff: some cursing and some kissing, including a makeout scene on a public bench and the implication of romantic infidelity, and a character's death off-screen.

'The Park Bench' tries to put a spin on the romantic-comedy genre with its emphasis on American literature, but its characters' cliches make it a ho-hum attempt.

By Roxana Hadadi

Read more: Family Movie Review: The Park Bench (PG)

Family Movie Review: War Room (PG)

WarRoom ChesapeakeFamilyMovieReviewKernel Rating (out of 5): whole popcorn kernal

MPAA Rating: PG        Length: 120 minutes

Age Appropriate For: 12+. The film is rated PG, but its themes – including a subplot about marital infidelity and a strong emphasis on Christian faith and its role in a successful marriage – don't really make it kid-friendly. This is more for tweens and teens and their parents, not children.

'War Room' doesn't have a subtle name, and it's not a subtle movie. The film, which calls on Christians to arm themselves through prayer, is exclusionary and limiting in the same ways so many movies in this genre are.

By Roxana Hadadi

Read more: Family Movie Review: War Room (PG)

Family Movie Review: Z for Zachariah (PG-13)

ZForZachariah ChesapeakeFamilyMovieReviewKernel Rating (out of 5): whole popcorn kernalwhole popcorn kernalhalf popcorn kernal

MPAA Rating: PG-13       Length: 98 minutes

Age Appropriate For: 14+. The film is about a love triangle that develops between three survivors of a nuclear disaster, so there is some kissing, a sex scene (a shirtless man and a clothed woman), some swimming in underwear and implied nudity (you see a woman in her underwear from the back while bathing; you see a woman sitting on a toilet while clothed), some cursing, a few different drunk scenes, including one where a man first makes a pass at a woman and then becomes physical with her, the description of various off-screen murders and violent interactions, and some vomiting.

Nobody seems to be telling the full truth in 'Z for Zachariah,' and that moody unpredictability serves the film well at first. But when it swings fully into love-triangle mode is when the film loses its way.

By Roxana Hadadi

Read more: Family Movie Review: Z for Zachariah (PG-13)

Family Movie Review: The Seventh Dwarf (PG)

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

MPAA Rating: PG        Length: 87 minutes

Age Appropriate For: 5+. The film combines many different fairy tales in its story about how heroes can come in any size, so there are some familiar elements here: a princess who can only be saved by true love's kiss, an evil witch who intends to harm an entire kingdom, some fantastical violence (including ice monsters), lots of romance stuff (basically the previously mentioned kissing), and some discussions about death, including the possible death of the princess and a dragon thinking about killing himself.

'The Seventh Dwarf' mashes together a variety of well-known children's stories, but its own narrative never gets off the ground. The film is too busy trying to be clever and acknowledging other fairy tales to make a case for its own existence.

By Roxana Hadadi

Read more: Family Movie Review: The Seventh Dwarf (PG)

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