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Summer 2015 Brings Movies for Toddlers to Teens

FILE - In this Monday, June 8, 2015 file photo, Actor Lewis Black, center, at the first showing in Los Angeles of "Inside Out." He is the voice of Fear in the animated film.

FILE - In this Monday, June 8, 2015 file photo, Actor Lewis Black, center, at the first showing in Los Angeles of "Inside Out." He is the voice of Fear in the animated film.

We have a question for the many children out of school for summer break: are you bored yet? Boredom usually sets in just after the first week without classes, homework and school bells.

Our answer? You can always go to the movies. Today, we tell you about some of the films that might be just right for the young.

'Inside Out'

Animation is as popular as ever this summer. We can start with what appears to be already one of the most successful movies of 2015. The Disney Pixar film “Inside Out” was released June 19. It has sold close to $300 million dollars of tickets since then.

“Inside Out” makes talking characters of human emotions. They belong to a girl named Riley, who has moved with her family to a new place. Joy, fear, sadness and other feelings are always at work in Riley’s mind and on display for movie viewers.

Critics widely praised “Inside Out.” New York Times movie critic A.O. Scott calls it a “delight…charming and funny.” He also writes, approvingly, that the movie “is a defense of sorrow,” a feeling that helps us all connect and care for each other.


Another animated movie sure to be a big hit is a spin-off from the “Despicable Me” series. The new movie “Minions” features the little yellow creatures who served the evil character Gru in “Despicable Me.”

The new movie tells their story. It starts years before they meet Dru. They have accidentally killed off all their past evil leaders. A search for a new one takes them to New York City and Florida and even overseas.

Actor John Hamm is one of the voices in the animated movie. He jokingly explained to Jon Stewart of the “The Daily Show,” why kids are not the only people who like Minions. “I think the reason they’re appealing to adults is ‘cause they look like capsules, they look like pills.” He then said he was going to get into trouble with filmmaker Universal studio for what he said.

'Paper Towns'

Maybe you think you are too old for animation. If so, there is also a highly anticipated young adult film opening. “Paper Towns” is a movie based on a John Green novel. John Green is also the author of “The Fault in Our Stars,” a hugely popular 2012 book that became a hugely popular film last year.

“Paper Towns” deals with some of the same themes as “The Fault in Our Stars” -- friendship, disappointment and loyalty, to name a few. The two movies also share an actor -- Nat Wolff. He played the blind cancer patient Isaac in the earlier film.

In “Paper Towns,” Wolff is the lead actor, along with actor-supermodel Cara Delvenigne. They play longtime neighbors who were friends as young children but belong to different social groups in high school. But, they remain emotionally close, and when one of them disappears, the other starts a search.

John Green describes the film as “a great movie about friendship.” Moviegoers are not expected to leave the theater crying as they may have after seeing “The Fault in Our Stars.” The new film is said to have more humor and mystery, and less tragic romance.

'Ricki and the Flash'

The summer movie season will come to an end with a movie that both teens and adults might enjoy. “Ricki and the Flash” comes out August 7. The film stars Meryl Streep as a rock and roll musician who left her family to follow her professional dreams. Ricki returns to lend motherly support when her daughter faces a difficult time. Ricki also tries to repair relations with her other adult children, as well as her former husband.

Meryl Streep has already proven she can sing in past movies, including “Mamma Mia” and “Postcards from the Edge.” Her musical skills are on display again in “Ricki and the Flash.”

Streep’s parenting is also on display. The daughter in distress in “Ricki” is played by Maggie Gummer, Meryl Streep’s real-life adult child.

I’m Jonathan Evans.


Words in This Story

bore v. to make (someone) tired and annoyed by being uninteresting or too much the same

animation n. a way of making a movie by using a series of drawings, computer graphics, or photographs of objects (such as puppets or models) that are slightly different from one another and that when viewed quickly one after another create the appearance of movement

anticipate v. to expect or look ahead to (something) with pleasure

distressn. unhappiness or pain: suffering that affects the mind or body

Do you like animated movies, or do you prefer live action? Let us know in the comments section.

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