Home Run movie review


Cory Brand was an up and coming baseball player who was living life in the fast lane.  When he hits rock bottom, his agent provides him with an opportunity to turn his life around.  He returns to his home town to coach his brother’s little league team and has to participate in Celebrate Recovery, a “12 step program with Jesus.”

When he returns to his hometown, Cory is forced to confront his dark past, which includes an alcoholic father and childhood abuse.  Like his father Cory has always turned to alcohol as a means of coping with his problems.  Home Run is a powerful movie with a Christian theme that focuses on finding the power to change and heal through Jesus Christ.  On his journey, Cory learns how to love baseball again and more importantly how to love himself.  One of my favorite lines in the movie was when Cory told his son that “Nothing great happens when you hold back.”  This is great advice for all of us.

Even if you have not dealt with issues of abuse or addiction, you may know someone who has, and even if you don’t, there will still be issues you can relate to.  This movie is about learning not to judge others because things aren’t always what they seem and also focuses on learning to forgive and move forward.  There are also powerful themes about parenting that we can all learn from.  One of the main characters said some things that hit me as a parent:  “It takes courage to be a parent.  It takes courage to love a child.  Parenting is not for cowards.”

It’s hard to find feel good movies with powerful themes like this one, and it’s a “must see” in my book!  Find out if your local theater will be showing the movie here–> Home Run theaters

If your theater will not be showing this movie, you can request a screening here–> Home Run Screening request

Make sure you follow them on Facebook, too, for all of the latest scoop–> Home Run movie

DISCLOSURE:  I was not provided with any compensation for providing this review.  I was given the opportunity to view an advance screening of the movie and also given a prize pack with t-shirts, books, and CDS to share with my readers.  All opinions are 100% mine!


The Croods Movie Review


One of the perks of being a blogger is that I sometimes get to attend movie screenings.  My kids saw the previews for The Croods when we went to see Wreck it Ralph and have been looking forward to it ever since then!  We weren’t disappointed!

The Croods are a prehistoric family trying to survive as the “end of the world” approaches.  The movie deals with letting go, facing the unknown, and new beginnings and has some great messages about parenting and families, too!  Grug, the father (whose voice is done by Nicholas Cage) is understandably cautious given the perilous world they live in.  His top priority is protecting his family, even if it means keeping them locked away in a cave for days at a time.  The teenage daughter, Eep (whose voice is done by Emma Stone) has a sense for adventure and yearns for something beyond the cave walls.  After sneaking out one day, she comes into contact with Guy, (voice of Ryan Reynolds) who has been making it on his own for awhile and is full of great survival tips.  Shortly after Eve returns to her family’s cave, the family is faced with unexpected changes and they have to leave the cave for the unknown.  Along the way, Grug has to swallow some of his pride as the “protector” and the family relies on Guy to help them survive.

Adults will be able to appreciate the storyline.  As parent, you may be able to relate to the relationship between Grug and his daughter and to that desire to protect your children and family.  The father-daughter relationship also took me back to my teenage years and reminded me of similar battles with my parents as I approached adulthood and strived to establish my own independence.


My kids, who are five and eight, enjoyed the movie, and there were plenty of moments where we all laughed together, but there are some pretty intense scenes and my five year old ended up on my lap about halfway through the movie. My advice is to leave the younger kids at home!

The favorite character for my kids was “Belt” (pictured above) who is Guy’s pet and doubles as a belt, a cook, and basically a jack of all trades.  You’ll be hearing “dun dun dun…” (you have to watch the movie to understand) from your kids for awhile after watching!

I have to admit that this movie kept me on the edge of my seat until the very end.  I found myself jumping at some scenes and wondering if the characters were going to survive in other scenes.  It’s not your typical children’s movie for sure!

DISCLOSURE:  I received free admission to this movie for myself and my family.  All reviews and opinions are my own.  Please refer to my disclosure policy for additional information.

The Odd Life of Timothy Green movie review

I’ve been watching the previews for The Odd Life of Timothy Green for weeks now and looking forward to seeing it!  I had the opportunity to preview the movie at a screening presented by Disney when I was at the Blogher conference last week and I was not disappointed!

As the movie begins, we meet Jim and Cindy Green who are very much in love and who desperately want to add a child to their family.  After being told that they will not be able to conceive a child, they spend an evening thinking about what might have been.  They fill a box with all the qualities their child would have had and all of the wonderful moments they would have shared.  He would love and be loved.  He would “ROCK.”  He would kick a winning goal at a soccer game.  They bury the box and their dreams in the garden in their backyard.  Late in the night, a young boy named Timothy appears and simply tells them he came from the garden.  Jim and Cindy decide not to question the gift that they’ve been given and to make the most of every little moment with Timothy.

WARNING:  This movie is a tear jerker!  Don’t forget the Kleenex!  Those who have struggled with fertility will be able to identify with Jim and Cindy’s emotions.  Anyone who is a parent will be able to identify with the struggles that they face during parenthood.  You want your child to be accepted and fit in with his peers.  You question decisions you’ve made, always wonder if you’re doing what’s best for your child, and think about what you could have or should have done different after the fact.

Timothy treasures every moment, even taking time each day to bask in the sunlight.  He brings perspective to the adults and peers in his life.  Watching this movie led me to reflect on my own children and the magic of childhood in general.  It reminded me to take a step back and to treasure those little magical moments that occur on a daily basis because children grow up way too fast!

This is a great movie for families and I can’t wait to share it with my own family next week!  It will be released in theaters on 8/15/2012.

In the meantime, you can enjoy this free summer fun kit here–> The Odd Life of Timothy Green summer fun kit 

Check out the trailer here:

DISCLOSURE:  Disney provided me with the opportunity to attend this screening, but all thoughts expressed in this review are my own!


Disney Pixar’s Brave Movie Review!

One of the “perks” of being a blogger is that I have the opportunity to attend movie screenings, and may times I am able to take my kids with me. We got the screening notice for Brave several weeks ago and my kids and I have both been looking forward to seeing it. We were not disappointed!

Merida is a young lady torn between her love of adventure and her responsibilities as a princess. Faced with the prospect of marriage, which she feels she is not ready for, she decides to take matters into her own hands to try to change her fate and seek her freedom. She happens upon a witch who casts a spell to help “change her mother” but of course, things don’t go quite as planned. She must mend her relationship with her mother given unexpected challenges.

After the movie, we got a special treat! The director, Mark Andrews, was there for a question and answer session. It was interesting to hear him share his experiences in making the movie. One of the things he shared was that Brave is the first Pixar movie with an actual person as the main character (they’ve done bugs and toys and Cars, but no humans!)

One of the things that he shared was that the movie was based on Brenda Chapman’s own experiences as a parent of a six year old daughter. She pitched the idea after trying to envision what her daughter would be like as a teenager! He is also the parent of a pre-teenage daughter and three boys, so he said he based some of the antics on his own experiences as a parent! I’m the parent of an often spirited daughter (who I have been told is just like I was at her age, of course), and I have often found myself wondering about what she will be like as a teenager. I was also reminded of my relationship with my own mother during the teen years!

Parents will enjoy this movie because in one way or another, they can relate to the story line either because of the difficulties associated with parenting a teenage daughter or because of the trials that come with raising busy little boys! Kids love the antics of the three little brothers as well as the action and adventure and Merida’s bravery. This is not your typical “princess fairytale” though, and I will warn you that some of the action scenes, which involve fighting scenes with bears, were a bit intense for my five year old, who ended up on my lap more than once during the movie.

Overall, we loved the movie and I think it had a great message! Mark Andrews summed it up best when he said that it deals with both the external tasks that we associate with bravery, but also the internal task of bravery, which is being able to recognize your mistakes, admit to them, and do everything you can to make them right.

Here’s what my kids thought about the movie:

Emily (8) – “I LOVED it! We will definitely be buying this when it comes out on DVD and I can’t wait to see it again! My favorite part was when Merida and her mom (as the bear) were playing together in the water.”

Jacob (5) – “I loved the three brothers when they turned into bears. They were so funny!”

NOTE: I did not receive any monetary compensation for this review. I was allowed to attend an advance screening for free. All opinions shared are my own and were not influenced in any way.