Category Archives: animation

A Boy Named Charlie Brown

a-boy-named-charlieA Boy Named Charlie Brown originally released in 1969 as the first Peanuts movie ever based on Charles Schultz Peanut comic strip. The movie is Peter Robbins’ swan song as the voice for Charlie Brown.  Before the movie, he voiced Charlie Brown several times for television specials.

The story follows Charlie Brown who decisively demonstrates he can do something right. He wins the spelling bee in his class. All the kids regard him with their usual rudeness despite winning his class spelling bee. Then, he does everything in his power to win the championship of his school and wins. He gets to go to the city and be in the National Elimination Spelling Bee.

Vince Guaraldi, who composed the music for the six previous TV specials, creates new arrangements of the old music for the movie. He even spices it up with several new songs by Rod McKuen. McKuen wrote the title song “A Boy Named Charlie Brown” and sings it as well, which establishes the whole feel for the movie — there is a little bit of Charlie Brown in all of us.

One of my favorite scenes is Schroeder’s poignant gesture to Beethoven. The music plays as marvelous complex scenes with Technicolor come on the screen in a very fancy presentation.

Another really good scene is with Snoopy and Linus. It is a delightful setting where Snoopy and Linus are wandering around the city looking for his blanket, which he lent to Charlie Brown for good luck in his spelling bee. Snoopy encounters an ice skating rink and fantasizes being in a hockey match as he skates around the rink. He even has a confrontation with the Red Baron and those scenes are always fun to watch.

When the movie ends, let the credits roll because you get to view the principle voice actors with their animated characters.

I recommend this movie because it is so much fun to watch, though I have a hard time seeing Charlie Brown having such a bad time. But, he is happy at the end, and that counts for me.

Alpha and Omega: Dingo Digs

AO-Dino-Digs_ocard_pack-shotDirected by Tim Maltby and written by Tom Kane, the wolf pack is back in action as a fun and entertaining story for young kids in Alpha and Omega: Dino Digs.

This is the sixth installment of the Alpha & Omega franchise, and some of the scenes are funny and cute with a wonderful musical score. The animation is poor quality and blurry at times. Still, the 47-minute movie will entertain the kids.

The movie starts with a “65 million years ago…” and we watch to cartoonish dinosaurs facing the destruction of their civilization.  We then cut to and follow Humphrey and Kate with their three pops when they are forced to find a new location for their den.

Their new place has kind of a unique name – wolf-burbia, a nice play on the word “suburbia.” While they are moving into their new grounds, they discover Amy, an affable dinosaur who is unfamiliar with the new world. The scene where they meet Amy is really cool to watch and each facial expression will engage your kids.

Amy is a friendly raptor that magically comes to life when she is uncovered during a big dig. The pups and their forest friends show Amy the wonders of their new world, and must work together and try to stop the diggers from unearthing the dangerous T-Rex before it is too late.

The movie is great for kids, teaching life lessons about being a good friend, helping your friends, and confronting and solving problems.


Power Rangers Dino Charge: Resurgence

POWER_RANGERS_Dino_Resurgence_ocard-pack-shotPower Rangers is never boring for kids. They just love watching the series. It is like they are battling alongside the dynamic team that is known as the Power Rangers. In Power Rangers Dino Charge: Resurgence, the Red, Black, Blue, Green, and Pink Rangers unite and save the world from prehistoric monsters.  I am amazed at how the boys are glued to the screen whenever the live-action Power Rangers battle against evil Cavity monster.

The kids learn teamwork and team building skills as the Power Rangers are, once again, put to the test as they rescue Chase and discover the destructive Ankylo Zord and have a battle against a team of Power Ranger clones.

All in all, you can’t go wrong with the Power Rangers. The series has been around a long time, and here we are at season 12. Yet, each new generation of kids get a kick out the battles and imaginative monsters the dynamic team goes against in each episode.

Peppa Pig: The Golden Boots

peppagoldenbootsPeppa Pig: The Golden Boots is a classic cartoon for preschoolers. The Pig snorts up funny episodes where kids just laugh and giggle constantly.

The first episode is called The Golden Boots, and other 45 episodes are very familiar but fun the youngsters. I can’t help but like the messages that include kindness, laughter, and gentle life lessons that make Peppa Pig one of the world’s most beloved preschool cartoons. Kids will never get tired of Peppa because he is so much fun to watch.


Care Bears: Bearied Treasure

Care Bears Bearied TreasureCare Bears creates the funniest puns in their titles.  Care Bears: Bearied Treasure is just too cute as a title and the best one so far. The story is about the bears finding a treasure map, so they each want a treasure for themselves.

They go on an adventure by jumping aboard a ship and sail the sea to Starshine Parade and look for treasures. While they are sailing they help a lost baby star and other delightful and innocent adventures.

But, there is a lesson, and this time, the Care Bears work together to find a buried pirate treasure for each of them but find that the real treasure is their special friendship, which is such a good message for preschoolers.

The pirate jargon coming from the Care Bears is entertaining and the quality of the animation is top-notch.  I recommend it.

Chuggington Dash at the Docks

Delivery Dash at the Docks is the newest installment in the adventurous Chuggington DVD collection. The DVD holds six episodes from the fifth season of the Disney Junior series. The disc even has extra bonus features like Badge Quest Episodes: Buddy Badge and Follow the Leader and Coloring Pages. Kids should enjoy the bonus features as a special treat. We even meet two new characters, Daley and Skipper Stu.  Mothers know this preschool storyline is even fun to watch with their kids.

We follow Koko, and he is thrilled to be spending the day training with Chuggington’s new express delivery engine, Daley. Together they pick up and deliver important packages all around Chuggington, frequenting the bustling docks where Skipper Stu, Chuggington’s new Dock Master, is loading and unloading the ship. All of them go on adventures that any child will enjoy and learn the importance of patience, paying careful attention to detail and teamwork.

Of course, all the delightful engines will entertain and inspire youngsters again and again. They will be able to visit with Brewster, Koko, and Wilson, along with the other engines in Chuggington, on these grand adventures.


hatchedDirected by Xu Kerr, Hatched is billed as an animated adventure featuring the voices of Jeff Foxworthy (The Smurfs) and Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings).  The movie is about farmyard animals that are crazy and silly for kids to truly enjoy. I have to say, the characters are out-of-this-world and just take a look at their names.

Hatched has many chickens in the movie, so the DVD can be pop in the player for Easter or Spring Break. The movie is part of a planned trilogy with playfully named characters like Cluck Norris, voiced by Astin, Charlie Horse, voiced by Foxworthy.

We follow Cluck Norris as he handles mishaps with young chicks destine to learn how to fly. Chickpea, Tiny SchwarzHENegger, Meryl Cheep and Angelina Poultrie are the crazy farmyard animals that help get the youngsters flying.

Everyone sees that the chickens really can fly, but when their tiny alien pal, Magic, is in danger, the young chicks join the efforts of their animal neighbors to save their home and their friend from the villains. The villains are not that scary, so the kids shouldn’t get too scared watching this silly animated movie. The chicks become heroes, and they learn a lesson about the meaning of friendship.

All in all, let the kids watch the movie because the parents might get bored with all the silly farm animals quirky situations. The clever names based on current movie stars will go over the kids’ heads, but at least the parents can have a chuckle or two when the hear them.

Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds Zexal Season 2

Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal Season 2The second season of Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal 5D’s covers episodes 27 to 64 with some season 3 and 5 episodes added, and is titled Earthbound Immortals for the English language viewers, though my DVD has the original title. The story spins around the waging war between the united Signers, and the evil Dark Signers. The box set is very similar to the season 1 box set.

You open up the box and see four individual DVD cases each with two discs per case. By combining both Season 1 and 2 box sets you will have the complete series about Yusei and Jack. You might be sad to know this is the last DVD release for Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s because there are a total of three seasons.  The third season is estimated at only 30 episodes that are not dubbed. For that reason, the set will not be released. No telling if that is a final decision.

With all that packaging of the series out of the way, the second season of this amine adventure takes place much like first season. There are some episodes that are not well dubbed. For example, the time Jack goes to the Nazca where he receives his Red Nova Dragon, and Team 5Ds go against another opponent during the WRGP tournament.  Other episodes with questionable dubbing are the Divine Temple and Ark Cradle Arc.

The anime is filled with many monsters going against other monsters like in Duel Runner Tournament, Duels for fun, and Plot build.  Like I wrote earlier, you will be surprised to see some of Season 3 and 5 in the set.

All in all, the set looks and seems perfect for any anime fan, but with the added episodes from the preceding seasons and some dubbing flaws makes the set haphazardly put together. But, I don’t think it is a reason not to purchase or view the episodes.  Being an amine fan or fanatic is all the reason to own this set.

The Giant King

The Giant King 3D DVDDirected by Prapas Cholsaranont, The Giant King is pretty simple and easy story for kids to follow.  RAM is the creator of all robots, and thus controls them. Pinky, voiced by Bella Thorne, is sent by RAM to terminate the giant robot Zork, voiced by Russell Peters, given that he is broken. Zork doesn’t want to fight, so when Pinky seizes Zork, a huge explosion happens and buries them both for many years till a junk robot, voiced by Nathan Barnatt, unearths them.

A robot battle happens and a thousand years later, the two sworn enemies, Zork and Pinky, wake up chained together with no recollection of who they are or how they wound up together. They decide to search of answers and begin wandering the barren wasteland. They are in search of RAM, the creator of all robots, making new friends and a few enemies along the way. But when their memories are restored, and they discover they are true enemies and you RAM really is, their newfound friendship is tested by the deep rooted battle of long ago. RAM shows up and decides to destroy them both, but their wacky friends decide to help them stop RAM.

The Giant King is truly wonderful animated movie to watch with all its charm and silly characters. The robots teach worthwhile lessons about helping your friends, never forsake your dreams, never back down to peer pressure, and never buckle under adversity.

The movie originated from Thailand where it received seven various nominations, and was translated for American distribution with English voice casting.  It is a wholesome, family movie.

My Little Pony: Equestria Girls: Friendship Games

My Little Pony Equestrian Girls Friendship GamesMy Little Pony: Equestria Girls: Friendship Games is a full-length movie as an adventure in itself. The Ponies come to life and share the magic of friendship with silly humor that kids can enjoy. There is a storyline, too, adding a little bit of drama, when the girls magically gain pony-like ears, tails, and wings.

Directed by Jayson Thiessen and Ishi Rudell, the story begins with Twilight Sparkle because she is only pony able to go from the human world to the pony world. It has been quite some time since she was in contact with any of her human friends.  When she does come in contact, it isn’t the Twilight they know.  At the same time, all the six human friends are getting in better control of their hidden magic powers. This is good because they need to learn how to control their powers for the friendship games at Canterlot High School – an athletic as well as an academic competition between rivalry schools.

What is really fun about this movie is it reinforces the idea of developing the positive reputation for the My Little Pony Friendship. The storyline keeps the characters in exciting circumstances along with twists and turns while learning important messages, such as when help arrives, it is best to accept it.

The animation looks very doable in 2-D. Thiessen and Rudell took a creative turn including 3-D camera shots. The voice talent for the characters works well. Tara Strong is the voice for Twilight Sparkle, and her voice really does sparkle while one can pity her flaws and intolerable actions.

A great scene that comes to mind is where they are on a dirt bike course, and two of the main characters are competing with the enemy high school. It includes Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy. The race starts well, but Twilight Sparkle inadvertently casts a strange magic spell, and the whole race goes whacky.

If you follow the TV show, it will help you to understand the characters, but it is not truly necessary. The first movie, My Little Pony: Equestrian Girls, is quite popular, and you should watch that one first to help understand the overall story.