I have ranted about Disney and other "kid friendly" movies before. There are a lot of movies out there seemingly aimed at kids that are just not what I deem appropriate. Then sure, I notice that they are rated PG. Why? I mean yes, they should be PG, but why make an animated movie that you don't want little kids watching. One Leif would love is Shark Tale. He is all about sharks right now. But 15 minutes after AB Tivo'd it and sat down to watch it with Leif he shut it off. Said it was hilarious, but not for Leif. Yeah, rated PG.
Ok, so here is where I probably go over the edge as an overprotective parent. Even the G movies get me. Do you know how many Disney rated G movies out there have the line "shut up" in them. I ignored it in Finding Nemo, I thought it was played cutely in Brother Bear, but wasn't thrilled. Then I was even less thrilled when Leif was repeating it verbatim from Brother Bear. I don't think he gets what it is, but at 2.5, I am just not thrilled with "shut up" becoming part of his vocab. So AB and I catch it on Brother Bear and skip that part most of the time.
Then there are other problems with the rated G movies, The Little Mermaid, which is one of Leif's favorites right now. Oh wait, the part where the shark chases Ariel and Flounder is one of his favorites, the rest of the movie isn't so great. But as a woman I have a problem with Ariel having to use her body to woo her potential suitor. Spirit, Stallion of the Cimmaron I mentioned previously I found too violent for toddlers... The list goes on. Yes, I am an overly protective mom.
Oh and if it isn't being overly protective it's the music! Does Phil Collins need to do the score for every.single.Disney.movie? No, the one he didn't do (Spirit), Brian Adams picked up. Just shoot me now.
So there's my litany of problems with children's movies out there. There are very few that don't fall onto my list of dislikes for any various number of random reasons. Monsters Inc is great, but has taught me son how fun it is to scare people. Great.
But you will be happy to hear that I was saved last weekend! I occasionally run across TV shows or movies while surfing on Tivo for things to record. I found and recorded, with loads of skepticism this last weekend, Curious George. The animated version with Will Farrell as the man in the yellow hat and Drew Barrymore as a teacher.
Love it. Oh and guess who does the entire soundtrack? Jack Johnson.
Leif loves "George movie" and will watch the whole thing (if I let him).
Another? For those times when shows less than 30 minutes are sought after, and the Little Einsteins might just send you careening over the edge? Babar, the animated series on some obscure channel... Quobo? Leif LOVES "elephant movie". I like that each one aims to teach a lesson, he likes the elephants. The only drawback is that there is a block of commercials smack in the middle of each one. And so far the episodes we have seen, that block of commercials starts off with Tana (from Apprentice fame) trying to hock her "Bedazzler". (Rolling my eyes.)
Leif has yet to "get" commercials, so we have to be quick and fast forward it or else is he disappointed it is over already. But Tana's irritating voice will soon prompt us into action.
So there are our two recommendations, animated Babar series and animated Curious George.
(And I need advice from other parents... Happy Feet comes out on DVD this week. Yay or nay?)