Category Archives: classics

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.

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.


Scholastic Storybook Treasures

20holidayadvent20 Holiday Adventures – Scholastic Storybook Treasures is the fourth release under the Scholastic Classics label with loads of content for kids to be entertained while learning family values such as right and wrong, be truthful, and do unto others. Just like the title says, the DVD holds twenty stories celebrating the holidays. My favorites are The Night Before Christmas, Little Drummer Boy, Max’s Christmas (from Max and Ruby currently airing on Nick Jr.), and Noah’s Ark.

The classic storybooks come to life and draw the kid’s attention, making a wonderful way to introduce reading books to kids.  Other stories on the disc include Merry Christmas, Splat, Morris’s Disappearing Bag, Merry Christmas, Space Case, Bear Snores On, Too Many Tamales, Lemonade in Winter, The Snowy Day, Fletcher and the Snowflake Christmas, In the Month of Kislev, Seven Candles for Kwanzaa, Great Joy!, Antarctic Antics, Giving Thanks, Bear Has a Story to Tell, The Clown of God, and Brave Irene.

20FairyTalesThe next Scholastic Collection is narrated by Oscar winners Kathy Bates and Paul Giamatti, and B.D. Wong from Law & Order. 20 Fairy Tales – Scholastic Storybook Treasures features twenty classic tales on a single DVD. My favorites are Cinderella, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Hansel and Gretel, and The Boy Who Cried Wolf.

The classic fairy tales are so much fun for the kids to watch while learning family values and the importance of reading. You can even place your storybook in the room with them while they watch the classic stories on the screen. The rest of the classic titles on the DVD are Doctor De Soto, Each Peach Pear Plum, Extra Yarn, Harold’s Fairy Tale, Lon Po Po: A Red Riding Hood Story from China, Princess Furball, Rapunzel, Red Riding Hood, Three Billy Goats Gruff, The Elves and the Shoemaker, The Little Match Girl, The Red Shoes, The Three Little Pigs, The True Story of The Three Little Pigs!, The Ugly Duckling, and The Emperor’s New Clothes.

The Seventh Dwarf

Seventhdwarf1After appearing in select NY and LA theaters, The Seventh Dwarf is available on Blu-ray and DVD. The animated movie is an adventure story that unites all your favorite fairytale characters in one kingdom and stars the voices of Peyton List, Norm MacDonald, Nina Hagen and Joshua Graham. There are great messages for kids to learn like friendship, problem solving, accepting differences and working as a team. The humorous scenes are really fun to watch as well as action and suspense scenes.

The story begins with the characters celebrating Princess Rose’s (Sleeping Beauty) 18th birthday. Everyone in the kingdom has come to Fantabularasa Castle including Snow White, the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella and Red Riding Hood. But just before the stroke of midnight Bobo, the youngest dwarf, accidentally pricks the finger on the cursed needle and sends the kingdom into a century-long slumber. Bobo decides to take the matter into his own hands by finding Rose’s true love Jack. Jack must save her with a kiss, Bobo and the other six dwarfs go on a treacherous journey. They face a fiery dragon and outwit the jealous, scheming and evil witch, Dellamorta.

The puns may go over the kid’s heads, but they are there for the adults to enjoy. The animation is well done even though this is not a big movie.

I am sure kids will want to re-watch the movie since it has some cute scenes with silly songs. The story features a mash-up of fairytales with a few obvious changes that add a bunch of fun. The writers are quite imaginative with the changes added to the stories, creating a bit of spark to the old fairytales.

Power Rangers: The Perfect Storm

powermegaPower Rangers DVDs are so popular with the kids and some adults. Each collection is worth owning, and recently released The Perfect Storm is no expectation.  The five episodes are pure entertainment, and never fail the ardent fan.

One episode follows Orion, who unlocks every sixth ranger power while his helmet morphs revealing each one of the power ranger’s helmet designs with his costume.  As a result, the rangers lose their energy because it is taken from them when Orion morphs.  How will they get their power back? It is such a fun story to watch.

Another episode with a quirky twist is where one of the monsters becomes smitten with one of the rangers. A love triangle forms because another monster is trying to destroy the ranger to have the female monster all to himself.

The next episode is about two of the rangers who switch bodies.  It’s hilarious when they adjust, learn how to be the other power ranger, and notice the disparity in their personalities.  They even try to discover what trigger the change.

In another episode, Tensou ventures outside the command center in order to see the arrival of a fierce storm.  It approaches quickly, and Tensou is hit by lightning. He loses his memory and is lost. The other rangers search for him. Once they find him they do everything in their power to help him recover his memory.

I can see how the kids will go crazy over these storylines. Overall and of course, The Perfect Storm will please any Power Ranger fan.