Welcome to the Read That Again! guide to children's film, cartoons and videos for younger viewers. Looking for good movies that won't warp their little brains too badly? Here are a few of our faves...

This page covers the letter "G."


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"Gnomeo & Juliet"
(Walt Disney, 2011)

Shakespeare as seen through the eyes of a garden gnome... Or at least that was the sales pitch for this computer-animated oddity. The work of the Bard only serves as a vague inspiration for this cutesy tale of two young lovers kept apart by their feuding families (rival bands of garden gnomes living in two kooky neighboring British gardens...) After this starting point, the filmmakers go off on goofy tangents that have more to do with bringing to life the small-scale worlds of these little yard-dwellers... But unlike, say, Pixar's Toy Story there's little happening in the plot to make these animated inanimate objects seem particularly interesting. The plot seems forced, as does the humor, replacing kinetic energy and high decibel levels for actual wit. This was a passable, kid-friendly way to spend an afternoon, but it didn't stick to the ribs. I suppose it's possible this manic film will steer a few viewers towards the pleasures of English literature... But I doubt it. Mostly it seemed pretty in-one-ear-and-out-the-other. (C+)




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