Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance: Men in Black III, ParaNorman, and Step Up Revolution

Check out our rundown of what is (and isn't) kid-friendly this week.

by | November 29, 2012 | Comments


Sorry, folks: if you’re looking for new family fare in theaters this week, you’re out of luck, as the two wide releases — Killing Them Softly and The Collection — aren’t safe for kids. However, the good news is that we’ve got some interesting DVD choices, including the sci-fi comedy Men in Black III and the animated horror homage ParaNorman. Without further ado, check out the best bets for family viewing this week!

New On DVD:

Men in Black III


What’s it about? Agent J (Will Smith) learns that his old partner Agent K (Tommy Lee Jones) is in grave danger. In order to rescue K — and save humanity — J must travel back in time and team up with K’s younger self (Josh Brolin).

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG-13 for “for sci-fi action/violence and brief suggestive content.” It’s safe for teens.

Is it any good? Even if nobody asked for a third installment, critics say MIB III is much better than it has a right to be — it’s charming, well acted, and features terrific special effects.



What’s it about? Norman is a young misfit with the ability to communicate with the spirits, which comes in handy when zombies and other assorted ghouls threaten his community.

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG for “scary action and images, thematic elements, some rude humor and language.” “Scary” is the operative word here; ParaNorman is pretty intense, so you probably shouldn’t screen it for any kids younger than eight or so.

Is it any good? Like Coraline, the previous film from the animation aces at Laika, ParaNorman is dark and wondrous, a macabre and imaginative fantasia that’s funny and spooky.

Step Up Revolution (AKA Miami Heat)


What’s it about? Emily is a professional dancer who falls for the more streetwise Sean. Sean’s flash mob crew is threatened, however, when a businessman attempts to gentrify his dance turf.

Who’s it for? It’s rated PG-13 for “some suggestive dancing and language.” It’s mostly innocuous stuff, and nothing your tweens wouldn’t see on an episode of Dancing with the Stars.

Is it any good? It’s pretty much what you’d expect: critics say the dance sequences are terrific, but the acting is so-so and the story is as old as the hills.

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