“The Giant King”

Rated PG

Best for all ages

“The Giant King” is an animated film that features the voice of Disney Channel star Bella Thorne and tells the story of two robots that wake up chained together with no memory of who they are. Unable to break the chain that binds them, Zork and Pinky begin wandering a barren wasteland in search of RAM, the creator of all robots, making new friends and some enemies along the way. It turns out that 1,000 years earlier, Pinky was sent by RAM to destroy Zork because Zork was broken and dangerous, but an explosion buried them together until a junk robot unearthed them.

“The Giant King” is a cute movie that teaches some important life lessons, such as not abandoning your friends when they need you, saying no to peer pressure and being brave.

Watch it or skip it? Watch it.

What’s good: It promotes a strong message of friendship and not judging others based on their looks.

What’s bad: There is some name-calling, cartoon violence and a bar scene, in which the characters are served oil.

“Mark and Russell’s Wild Ride”

Not Rated

Best for ages 12 and older

If you missed “Mark and Russell’s Wild Ride” when it aired on Disney XD in November, you’re in luck as it’s now on DVD and Netflix. Starring “Liv and Maddie” star Joey Bragg and Sean Giambrone of “The Goldbergs,” this comedy focuses on two best friends, Mark (Bragg) and Russell (Giambrone) who undergo a zany adventure trying to secure Mark’s driver’s license after numerous failed attempts. It all starts when Ashley, the most popular girl in school and Mark’s crush, asks him for a ride to an exclusive pool party. The two friends seek out a DMV tester named Glenn with a reputation for giving an easy pass, but things go wrong when Glenn finds out his wife is leaving him and he’s too distraught to complete the test. Mark and Russell then embark on a cross-town adventure trying to reunite Glenn with his wife. Fortunately, the two friends pick up a few valuable life lessons along the way.

Watch it or skip it? Watch it.

What’s good: The acting is mostly good, and if you and your kids enjoy clean, screwball comedy, it’s full of laughs.

What’s bad: Mark and Russell risk their lives and others in a quest to gain popularity.

“LeapFrog Letter Factory Adventures: The Great Shape Mystery”

Not Rated

Best for ages 6 and younger

This entry from the LeapFrog Letter Factory Adventures features the familiar LeapFrog friends, this time as they discover that fun and learning comes in all shapes and sizes. There’s a new machine at the factory, but no one knows what it does. Leap, Lily, Tad and their friends go on an adventure in search of clues, with only a map and few clues to guide them.

As cute as most LeapFrog adventures, this one teaches kids how to know the difference between shapes, what fractions mean and about measurements.

Watch it or skip it? Watch it.

What’s good: The lessons are explained in easy and fun ways for young kids to understand.

What’s bad: Nothing.


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