Articles Tagged with: movies

Holiday Movies for the Whole Family

Nothing says the end of the year like an influx of new movies, holiday-themed and otherwise. We’ve put together a list of highly recommended holiday movies for all members of the family. We’ve put some for adults, some for the kids, and some for the adults who are really kids at heart.

Holiday Movies at the Theater

None of these are holiday-themed, per say, but they should prove to be fun experiences! 
Poster for Spider-Man a December movieSpider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Release Date: December 14, 2018

Rated: PG

Summary: Teenager Miles Morales suddenly develops superhuman powers after being bitten by a radioactive spider. Pitted against Kingpin, Miles must team up with other Spider heroes sucked into his world from their own to take down the hulking villain and return the other versions of Spider-Man to where they belong

 

Aquaman movie poster, December movieAquaman

Release Date: December 21, 2018

Rated: PG-13

Summary: Arthur Curry, half-human and half-Atlantian prince, must step up to lead his people as his half-brother Orm begins to seek the unification of the underwater kingdoms for the purpose of rising up against the people on the surface. Along the way, Arthur struggles between his ties to the sea and his ties to the land.

 

Mary Poppins Returns movie poster December movieMary Poppins Returns

Release Date: December 19, 2018

Rated: PG

Summary: A sequel to the beloved Disney film, now starring Emily Blunt as the titular nanny alongside Lin Manuel-Miranda and Meryl Streep. Michael and Jane Banks are now grown-up with families of their own. However, when Micheal suffers a personal loss, Mary Poppins returns to their lives.

 

The Classics to Watch at Home

Here’s where to find all the good holiday content for movie night at home.
It’s a Wonderful Life

Release Date: January 7, 1947

Rated: PG

Summary: It’s the story of a man named George Bailey from childhood to adulthood, who finds himself in dire straits one Christmas. After being rescued by a guardian angel, George learns the importance of his life and how much he means to his friends, family, and even acquaintances. It’s generally on TV every year and can be found streaming on Amazon Prime.

 
Elf, a classic holiday movieElf

Release Date: November 7, 2003

Rated: PG

Summary: Buddy, a human, was accidentally transported to the North Pole and was raised into adulthood by elves at Santa’s workshop. He begins to realize how he doesn’t fit and decides to head to New York City in search of his real father. However, he has some trouble fitting in with modern society. Elf can be rented from Amazon, or you can catch it on TV.

 

Die Hard is a holiday movieDie Hard

Release Date: July 15, 1988

Rated: R

Summary: There’s a debate as to whether Die Hard is really a holiday movie or not, but it’s definitely a fun ride. Definitely for the adults in the family. John McClane, New York City police officer, must save the day on Christmas Eve. Die Hard can be rented on Amazon, accessed via a Cinemax subscription, or found on TV during the holiday season.

What’s your favorite holiday movie? Do you have one that you watch every year? Let us know and add to the list of recommendations.

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What to Do Over Thanksgiving Break?

Thanksgiving is next week, and we’re looking forward to stuffing our faces full of turkey and mashed potatoes. What else can you do during the Thanksgiving holiday?

Spend Time With Family

Thanksgiving break with the family

This one is a no-brainer. If your family is already together for the Thanksgiving meal and Thanksgiving break, see what else you can do together. Sign up to volunteer as a group, brave the cold for some outdoor time, or catch a new movie. For families with kids, Ralph Breaks the Internet is a great option or the Fantastic Beast sequel. For older families, Creed 2 and Widows offer some exciting action-drama.

Offer a few options and figure out what would work for everyone! What’s most important is that everyone has fun.

All About Football

Thanksgiving football games

Watch three full games of football on Thanksgiving! But, if you’re getting bored of just watching, pick up a ball yourself and make it a casual game with the family. It’s particularly good to do if you’ve got some kids who need to get their energy out! After that’s done, you can return to the couch to keep watching the games.

Of course, you’ve got to practice your tackle anyway for Black Friday sales. Just kidding. Please be safe and polite during shopping on Black Friday. Tackling is a foul for sure in that case.

Set Up the Tree

Thanksgiving break to winter break

Finally, it’s socially acceptable to put up that tree! Thanksgiving break, get your tree early and put on your decorations. It’s a nice way to transition from one holiday to the other. You might consider setting up outside decorations too, before it gets too cold to do so! Just pace yourself on holiday songs. Don’t burn yourself out too early on those.

If you don’t celebrate a holiday with a tree, it’s still a good time for decorating or cleaning! Rope your family into helping while you’ve got them there.

Learn Some History!

Of course, it’s important to know the context of Thanksgiving and be aware of our history as we celebrate. Make a small lesson for your kids about the First Thanksgiving or do some research for yourself. 

After that, if you want more check out what Early America was like with Loot Pursuit! Or research another culture with Excavate!

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‘Tis the Season – For Movies!

Make use of your free time and watch movies!

A scene of the movies

from: hashi photo

The holidays are a great time to get cozy and watch some movies! This year it looks to be a good year for some exciting new films like:  Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Jumanji, The Greatest Showman, and Ferdinand, just to name a few!  However, one of the most successful movies this holiday season has been Disney/Pixar’s Coco. The beautiful story of young Miguel who has dreams of being a musician despite his family’s mysterious ban on music! He finds himself able to cross into the “Land of the Dead” during Día de los Muertos to meet his musical idol.

Trademarking Culture

One of the reasons the movie is so successful and plays to both Hispanic and non-Hispanic audiences so well is because of a flub by Disney. The company tried to copyright the phrase “Día de los Muertos” in 2013 which resulted in such intense backlash they decided to rescind the permit a week later. One of the most outspoken critics of the copyright was Lalo Alcaraz, a Mexican-American political cartoonist, who Disney then hired (along with two others) to be a cultural consultant. This assured that the film was portrayed in the most appropriate and authentic manner.

As a former Spanish teacher, I am thrilled to see movies like this and Reel FX’s Book of Life Movies like Coco feature Dia de los Muerta altars like thisbring culturally sensitive and authentic portrayals to the mainstream. I have taught in predominantly suburban districts that did not have diverse populations. Every year I had to explain to teenagers that Día de los Muertos was not “Mexico’s Halloween” but a vibrant celebration of life and death. Sure, there are plenty of documentaries, crafts, and websites to research how Día de los Muertos is celebrated, but none of it got to the emotions and beliefs of the holiday like Coco. It’s a wonderful thing to know that children and adults can see this movie and experience the heritage, bright colors, music, language, and emotion of Día de los Muertos.

Preserving Culture

An artifact not from the movies- instead from Excavate! Mesoamerica

We obviously love any kind of entertainment that can combine learning and fun. Games and experiential learning have the power to make education effortless. We had this in mind when we designed our Excavate! Series. In Excavate! Mesoamerica you can have this experience. Players have the opportunity to travel to three different locations: Chichen Itza – the Mayan pyramid complex on the Yucatan Peninsula, Tenochtitlan – the Aztec capital in central Mexico, and Cusco – The capital of the Incan Empire. The game lets students analyze artifacts from these cultures to piece together an understanding of the people and how they lived. The beautiful illustrations in the journal will also provide many opportunities for discussion. We hope this game can also spark an interest into learning about these histories and people.