Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance: Free Birds and Last Vegas, Plus Monsters University and R.I.P.D.

We give you what you need to know about the family-friendliness of this week's new releases.

by | November 1, 2013 | Comments

In Theaters This Week:



Free Birds

20%

Rating: PG, for some action/peril and rude humor.

Owen Wilson lends his distinctive, nasal twang to the voice of Reggie, a turkey who realizes he and his brethren are all being fattened up to become the main course for Thanksgiving feasts. He and a very intense, muscular turkey named Jake (Woody Harrelson) travel back in time to the first Thanksgiving to keep their kind off the menu for good. There’s a ton of stuff going on in this animated adventure — characters, subplots, themes, antics — none of which is terribly funny or thrilling. The kids at the screening I attended were uncharacteristically low-key and seemed unengaged. There’s nothing offensive or inappropriate here — a big battle scene is mere spectacle. And a half-hearted metaphor in which the film likens turkey slaughter to the plight of Native Americans will probably go over kids’ heads.



Last Vegas

46%

Rating: PG-13, or sexual content and language.

I can’t really imagine why you’d want to take your kids to this comedy about a quartet of 70-year-olds (Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Kline) who reunite in Las Vegas for a bachelor party. But if for some reason your family is at the multiplex and you need to find something you can all watch, this would probably be fine for tweens and up. There are the obligatory Viagra jokes and a subplot about sanctioned cheating. The guys judge a bikini contest by the pool and enjoy a wild night of drinking and partying at a nightclub. And Kline’s character lets loose with one big, loud, well-timed F-bomb. Surprisingly, the movie itself is funnier and not as hacky as it looks, largely because the four stars bring such great presence to their roles.

New On DVD:



Monsters University

80%

Rating: G.

Tiny, lime-green Mikey (voiced by Billy Crystal) and big, blue Sulley (John Goodman) are back together again in this prequel to the 2001 Pixar hit Monsters, Inc. The movie introduces us to how Mikey and Sulley met during their freshman year in college and studied to be the master scarers they eventually become. Speaking of scares, there aren’t too many in this lively, colorful, family-friendly comedy; my son, Nicolas, was 3 ½ when I took him to see this and he did just fine. The dean of the scaring school — an intimidating, centipede-like creature voiced by Helen Mirren — might frighten the littlest viewers as she swoops through the air and then scampers about on her sharp claws. The rest of the monsters are goofy, or furry, or squishy, and thoroughly adorable and clever.



R.I.P.D.

12%

Rating: PG-13, for violence, sci-fi/fantasy action, some sensuality and language including sex references.

This inferior version of Men in Black finds Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges as mismatched buddy cops who’ve been killed in the line of duty during different centuries. They’re forced to work together in a sort of purgatory to prevent the dead from taking over the living world. Based on a graphic novel, R.I.P.D. features grotesque and menacing creatures who transform before our eyes. They’re disgusting to look at but are never really scary, partly because the 3-D conversion looks so messy. There’s also quite a bit of gunfire but it’s of the cartoonish variety coming from souped-up, supernatural weaponry.

Tag Cloud

20th Century Fox Walt Disney Pictures Syfy harry potter joker vampires BBC America Trophy Talk nature dramedy Horror jurassic park APB king kong Country Video Games Vudu sitcom video hist kids italian TV movies superman Endgame asian-american Pacific Islander Legendary crime VOD sopranos Marvel Studios HBO Max biography politics Creative Arts Emmys spider-verse Dark Horse Comics Crackle breaking bad cops political drama Pride Month feel good Hulu Spectrum Originals aliens critic resources Universal Pictures football Amazon Prime Reality fresh Family free movies Trivia facebook Travel Channel Winter TV theme song Marvel BET Awards E! NBA Disney+ Disney Plus Ovation DGA Mindy Kaling zombies Fox Searchlight Universal movie universal monsters Lucasfilm sequels razzies boxoffice RT History marvel comics festival BBC One Nominations BAFTA The Witch Thanksgiving adaptation GoT anime Wes Anderson 2020 21st Century Fox Instagram Live cooking vs. twilight Sneak Peek Watching Series black comedy Black History Month war YouTube Premium Elton John Paramount Plus E3 independent Oscars Tumblr Prime Video toy story Countdown Exclusive Video 2018 serial killer cancelled TV series target Image Comics telelvision miniseries new star wars movies Baby Yoda blockbusters thriller reviews 90s GLAAD sports Character Guide AMC IFC series slashers spinoff parents elevated horror Extras CMT Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Hallmark know your critic YA Disney sequel Television Critics Association composers news NYCC Hear Us Out Comedy Central Opinion scary movies Toys dceu screen actors guild Hollywood Foreign Press Association Marvel Television Cosplay talk show Hallmark Christmas movies American Society of Cinematographers period drama 72 Emmy Awards Christmas Freeform Academy Awards DirecTV criterion a nightmare on elm street die hard SXSW The Academy 2019 2017 monster movies tv talk Amazon Studios Starz spanish language A24 indiana jones Ellie Kemper comic book movies documentary Apple TV+ green book rom-coms comic book movie Adult Swim Schedule blaxploitation Photos laika TV renewals rotten ABC Winners diversity TCA transformers Binge Guide fast and furious ABC Signature nbcuniversal USA Network space chucky cancelled Super Bowl Tokyo Olympics Lifetime Christmas movies President mutant cancelled television Britbox justice league Musicals 71st Emmy Awards gangster Broadway 73rd Emmy Awards scary Emmy Nominations prank TCA Awards TBS slasher TV Land Epix HFPA disaster A&E Fantasy teaser YouTube streaming wonder woman genre Netflix Christmas movies new york science fiction Discovery Channel robots Superheroe WarnerMedia Cannes werewolf USA halloween Song of Ice and Fire IFC Films Marathons Esquire The Arrangement biopic PlayStation 99% spider-man Summer Shondaland canceled TV shows CW Seed ABC Family Awards Tour hispanic heritage month Comic-Con@Home 2021 Cartoon Network Year in Review Avengers finale pirates of the caribbean VH1 latino Crunchyroll Mary poppins First Look legend zombie all-time Pop TV CNN australia satire FX on Hulu TLC Columbia Pictures hispanic HBO Go book adaptation adventure directors singing competition Tubi Netflix reboot royal family films king arthur child's play Paramount Showtime ESPN 2015 natural history Star Trek Nickelodeon comiccon History San Diego Comic-Con kong television CBS rt archives game show BET emmy awards live event New York Comic Con saw rt labs critics edition discovery dreamworks ID spanish Red Carpet Lifetime ghosts First Reviews MSNBC witnail true crime TV Lionsgate LGBTQ Apple Rom-Com festivals Superheroes trophy SundanceTV movies stop motion DC Comics Captain marvel comic books Tomatazos french The Walking Dead archives animated live action Infographic worst popular Fall TV japanese MCU scorecard LGBT 93rd Oscars indie game of thrones Animation stand-up comedy black concert Bravo MTV kaiju Pop comedies dark Rock christmas movies Black Mirror godzilla Sci-Fi docudrama docuseries PBS art house comics Sundance Now TIFF travel Women's History Month TruTV classics Teen strong female leads Martial Arts sag awards james bond The CW Film Festival Rocketman streaming movies obituary aapi TCA 2017 foreign Mary Poppins Returns Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt WGN leaderboard 4/20 rotten movies we love mockumentary dexter toronto canceled 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards olympics heist movie Amazon medical drama police drama psychological thriller IMDb TV Amazon Prime Video spy thriller FOX crime thriller cancelled TV shows TCM Holidays The Purge Holiday cinemax Sundance rt labs screenings Television Academy Disney Plus Musical book award winner Mystery dogs DC Universe new zealand deadpool Calendar mcc richard e. Grant Polls and Games scene in color binge crime drama women Mary Tyler Moore Music Best and Worst RT21 The Walt Disney Company children's TV ratings Arrowverse stoner Set visit best Election renewed TV shows documentaries Brie Larson Podcast Biopics 1990s Disney streaming service Drama Masterpiece Interview Pet Sematary Spring TV halloween tv 24 frames critics Emmys quibi supernatural cults young adult FXX high school Western international adenture TCA Winter 2020 cartoon El Rey Film Comedy anthology Food Network golden globes 79th Golden Globes Awards suspense romance Reality Competition Valentine's Day Spike trailers doctor who Certified Fresh Apple TV Plus OneApp video on demand Neflix batman Comic Book Ghostbusters SDCC cars Tarantino blockbuster Rocky Warner Bros. Anna Paquin social media Premiere Dates DC streaming service debate HBO ITV OWN Comics on TV action-comedy TNT 45 NBC Turner Classic Movies Trailer Turner Classic Film X-Men BBC Alien Action based on movie hidden camera 007 Box Office superhero mission: impossible See It Skip It National Geographic casting PaleyFest what to watch romantic comedy historical drama Awards Acorn TV japan Grammys crossover hollywood remakes dragons name the review Quiz versus psycho golden globe awards Shudder boxing marvel cinematic universe dc posters Kids & Family Disney Channel FX AMC Plus Writers Guild of America Stephen King worst movies Fargo technology comic venice VICE YouTube Red Chernobyl lord of the rings Logo nfl Fox News Nat Geo 2021 CBS All Access 2016 cats Sundance TV south america Pirates GIFs Mudbound ViacomCBS TV One unscripted zero dark thirty jamie lee curtis Tags: Comedy Sony Pictures Heroines mob basketball revenge Pixar spain Peacock Funimation Paramount Network Star Wars franchise