Monday, October 5, 2009

Question of the Week - The Movies

This weekend, the Pumpkin was pretty sick. Unfortunately, we do not have a thermometer that she will let us use that gives an accurate read. But we figure she was somewhere in the 100s to 101s on Saturday. We knew she was REALLY sick when she fell asleep on the couch during the day. Twice. She was a poor little thing with a cough and running nose in addition to the fever.

We treated the fever, washed her hands frequently and wiped her nose regularly. Other than that, there wasn't much to do. So we let her sit around on the couch and watch TV most of the day.

I remember when I was a kid and home sick that there were certain movies I loved to watch. My two favorites once I was elementary-school aged were Heidi and Pollyanna. How I loved to curl up in my parents' bed watching one of those on video, stopping for a cup of chicken broth and hot tea.

So when my daughter was sick and sitting on the couch, I thought it would be a great time to introduce a real movie to her! She does have, and love, the Winnie the Pooh movie, but that's really a combination of short stories. I did try Mary Poppins a few weeks ago, but I quickly saw that she is still too young for that movie, as I'm sure she is for Heidi and Pollyanna. I didn't just want to buy a Dora movie or another TV show's movie. I wanted to introduce her to a movie that is known in our culture, one that is recognized as a movie.

On Sunday, I had a chance to go look for DVDs after having lunch with a friend. My friend and I talked about different Disney movies and Pixar movies, trying to come up with one that would hold the Pumpkin's interest without being too violent or scary. I also did not want to start with a Princess-who-has-to-be-rescued story. The first one that both I and my friend came up with independently was The Little Mermaid, a movie I absolutely love. However, I don't want the Pumpkin's first introduction to princess be one in which I feel like the lesson is "Keep your mouth shut so the man will fall in love with you and rescue you." I'd rather start her with Beauty and the Beast, or Mulan if it didn't have all the violence.

We came up with a few good ones that I would have bought: Lady and the Tramp, The Lion King, Toy Story, Finding Nemo. But it boiled down to whatever the store had in stock. They had The Jungle Book, so that's the one I got! I started it Sunday afternoon, but the Pumpkin was in a fussy mood and the beginning was too slow for her. I tried again a few hours later, using a trick my friend says she does to cut out the scary beginning of Finding Nemo--I skipped the beginning. I started with the elephants, which was followed by Baloo and the Bare Necessities song. Score! She was into it!

We didn't watch the whole thing, but by the time the monkeys had taken Mogli, she was asking, "But where is Moogi?" and wanting to watch more. By this morning, she was feeling good enough to go to school, but she was asking about it. I told her we could probably watch it after school.

I'm really excited to start to share movies with her. Especially the movies I grew up watching or discovered a little later. Movies that I can enjoy watching. Especially ones with songs that we can sing and dance to. And when she's sick (which is going to be happening more now that she's in pre-school), I can't wait to cuddle her on the couch and watch Sick Day Movies with her.

This week's questions of the week are:
What movies have you watched with your kids or are excited to watch with them? Do you have any special Sick Day Movies?

I'm especially excited to share Beauty and the Beast, Lady and the Tramp, Shrek and Mary Poppins (once she's old enough to enjoy it). I'm sure there are a bunch of others that I'm forgetting, but those are the ones that come to mind now. How about you?


MommyEm said...

I really want to show Dorothy "The Sound of Music." We sing so many of the songs that I think she would find it enjoyable. It has been awhile since I saw it all the way through, but I _think_ it might be okay, especially if we just fast forward from song to song. Otherwise, I think it is going to be a bit longer before we all sit down and watch a movie together. Unlike Pumpkin, Dorothy just sits and stares during a TV show and turns into a little Toddler Zombie and I don't think we should introduce the full-length stuff until later.

Becoming Mommy said...

"The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" is Sasha's current "i've been sick" movie.

He LOVES it. He understands it. He finds nothing scary in it. He can retell the story to me and relate it to things that happen (especially being stuck, having a favorite food, and being 'bounced'--that last one is all Kerrygirl).

Charisse said...

Kiki's Delivery Service and My Neighbor Totoro are brilliant, not scary, and not princessy at all. IMO Totoro may be the best kids' movie ever made. Other Miyazaki stuff is probably better for somewhat older kids. Wallace and Gromit is great (although those are shorts that come together--the movie about the Were Rabbit has some slightly scary stuff). Cars, as she approaches 3, will probably be irresistable--it's a sweet story, just consider how many matchbox cars you would like your house to end up cluttered with. :)

Mouse was sick this weekend too (similar bug, sounds like) and she was entertained by watching football games with Mr. C, working on her halloween costume with me, and having 100-odd pages of Anne of Green Gables read to her. Last time she was sick on a weekday, we downloaded the entire season of "Olivia" which saved my butt as far as actually getting something done.

paola said...

Until recently we have only watched the longish movie-like episodes of Thomas(thetank..)and Bob (thebuilder). Noah is a big fan of both, but will watch almost everything as long as it's not too scary ( he seems to be over the scary stage he was in when he turned 4 as he can actully sit thru Nemo and not be scared by the sharks). Zoe is not really into tv so much although she loves Angelina Ballerina and she does watch the 40 minute Angelina 'film, Princess Dance. Other flicks she gives up on 10 minutes into them, unless she is siting on my lap.

So I can only speak for the 4.5 y.o, who loves Nemo and has watched Babe a couple of times and Ratatouile he also liked, but didn't finish. We of course are limited by what we can get here in English ( they don't watch anything in Italian), so am not much help for ideas.

Katie said...

Two of my all-time favorites are The Princess Bride and The Secret of Roan Inish.

Somehow I've only now, after 25 years, realized that The Princess Bride is theoretically about a princess who has to be rescued. First, she's only a princess by courtesy; second.. well.. I suppose I could come up with more rationalizations, but I'm typing one-handed and don't want to. ;P

The second is a fairy tale of a sort, but isn't at all princessy, and is about two kids working their butts off and reuniting their family. Oh, yes, there's no denigration of adults, either!

Both movies are live-action, which I find I prefer for kids' movies anymore.

Anonymous said...

Our little guy enjoys some of the movies already mentioned, Ratatouile, Cars, anything Wallace and Grommit (also from Aardman, Shawn the Sheep)...

When he is sick, he especially enjoys the Muppet show and movies.

Hope your Pumpkin is feeling better. We ended out at our Ped's walk in hours this morning and I was shocked by how quiet it was for a Monday morning.


BisBink said...

I definitely recommend "Cars" or "Horton Hears a Who". Those are the Main Man's two favorites. I can't think of anything scary in "Cars", but "Horton Hears a Who" has some slightly scary parts. We watched "Sleeping Beauty" once and I couldn't believe how scary it was. It's funny how different Disney movies and cartoons are now, versus when we were growing up. A lot of their older cartoons were violent (ie. Pluto & Figaro fighting), but now they make them educational and about social interaction.

Hope the Pumpkin is feeling better!

meggiemoo said...

My almost 4y.o. loves Shaun the Sheep, Kipper (very gentle and zen-like British cartoon about Kipper the dog and his, so cute), Winnie the Pooh, and Spirit (these are the ones we own).

We haven't had very much success with the traditional Disney movies from my childhood, for the reasons mentioned above. I'm always shocked by how many of them have themes of parental loss (Bambi, Dumbo, Lion King, etc.). My DS is ultra-sensitive, so for a very long time we only ever watched Kipper.

Now we do go see some of the new ones in the theater (Up, Madagascar), but it took a long time for him to get to this point.

Carmen said...

"CARS" was a big one for my son for awhile. Amazingly he doesn't find the movie "Monsters Inc" scary at all even tho there are some scary parts.

My son also really likes musicals. We've watched the "Sound of Music" (obviously not the whole thing) but he loved the big scenery opening at the beginning with the mountains. He also really likes Enchanted (which is great b/c I totally love it too). It is princessy but in a tongue in cheek kinda way. Of course your daughter probably wouldn't get the sarcasm... Sweet anyway.

Carmen said...

btw, skip Finding Nemo. Its cute but my son finds the mommy dying at the beginnging really sad and then his daddy is looking for him through the whole movie. Also sad for my son. He loves Nemo himself but it really is a sad movie in a lot of ways.

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