We’re fortunate to count many families and parents among our readers here at AskDeb.com. As a result, I often receive emails asking questions such as, “What are some good family movies in the theater now? What are some good family movies on DVD?” Fortunately, I have an answer for both of these.
New Release Family Films
Going to the movies can sometimes be an ordeal for a family. So many movies these days are filled with gratuitous sex and violence that it’s hard to find something everyone can enjoy. This makes it much harder to answer the question, “What are some good family movies in the theater now? What are some good family movies on DVD?”.
Luckily, most theater chains are always showing at least a few new release family films. As of this writing, here are the top family films currently playing:
- Marley & Me – Based on the best-selling memoir by John Grogan, Marley & Me follows the lives of a married couple (played by Jennifer Anniston and Owen Wilson) and their Labrador Retriever named Marley. As the couple grows older, Marley is their constant companion and becomes a true member of the family. A heartwarming family film, I challenge anyone not to cry like a baby during the end of the movie.
- Inkheart – Based on a children’s book, Inkheart revolves around Mo Folchart (Brendan Fraser) and his young daughter, Meggie (Eliza Bennett). Both have the ability to bring characters from books into the real world, but a real person must also enter the pages as a consequence. This eventually leads to a perilous journey in which Mo gathers together a band of adventurers to rescue his wife from the pages of a book entitled Inkheart.
- Paul Blart: Mall Cop – Kevin James (The King of Queens) stars in this good-natured comedy. Paul Blart is a lonely, overweight man who dreams of being a police officer. In the meantime, he makes a living as a security guard at the local mall. When robbers take control of the mall, Blart must spring into action in his own hilarious way. Appropriate for the whole family, Paul Blart: Mall Cop is the rare film which features a truly nice main character.
- Hotel for Dogs – Based on the novel by Lois Duncan, Hotel for Dogs stars Emma Roberts and Jake T. Austin as a couple of teens who begin taking in stray dogs at an abandoned house. If your family loves dogs, you’ll certainly want to see this one. Don Cheadle, Kyla Pratt and Lisa Kudrow co-star.
What Are Some Good Family Movies On DVD?
- Star Wars (1977) – The movie that launched a franchise and changed the face of science-fiction forever. The original still holds up, and adults and kids alike will thrill to the adventures of Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Han Solo.
- Back to the Future (1985) – Starring Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd, this sci-fi/adventure movie revolves around the concept of time travel. Full of laughter and fun, you and your family may also enjoy the sequels (1989 and 1990).
- Toy Story (1995) – This computer-animated film from Pixar Animation Studios gives us a look at what toys do when children aren’t around to play with them. The antics of Woody and Buzz Lightyear can easily be enjoyed by a kid, and adults will also appreciate the clever dialogue and pop culture references. Excellent voice work from Tom Hanks
(see this article for more
Tom Hanks Movies), Tim Allen and Don Rickles.
- The Wizard of Oz (1939) – Kids will absolutely love this family film filled with flying monkeys, a cowardly lion, and a young girl named Dorothy trying to return home to Kansas. Adults will appreciate the lavish musical numbers. This is a must-see family movie which is still entertaining after 70 years.
- WALL-E – Another hit from Pixar, WALL-E is about a robot in the future who is tasked with cleaning up a polluted Earth. When he falls in love with a female robot named EVE, he follows her into space and has the adventure of a lifetime. A charming family film about hope, love and perseverance.