News and Features

Art&Seek Jr: Film Fun for Pint-Sized Movie Lovers

Art&Seek Jr. is one mom‘s quest to find activities to end the seemingly endless chorus of the “I’m Bored Blues” while having fun herself.  Impossible you say? Check back on Tuesdays for kid-friendly events that are fun for adults, too.

For Rose, the highlight of the holiday season was not caroling, cookie baking, or even a visit with Santa. What really got her all goose-pimply with excitement of the premiere of Les Miserables. So intense was Rose’s anticipation that for several weeks leading up to the opening of the film every time a Les Miz trailer came on television, she’d stop whatever she was doing and sit mesmerized. She even got to the point that she’d use the DVR to rewind the commercials so she could watch them again. To say Rose was pumped about seeing this movie is a colossal understatement.

I had my doubts about the appropriateness of this particular film for a 7-year-old. It wasn’t so much the adult situations that concerned me – I’m a master at eye covering when the occasion calls for it. It was a running time of 158 minutes and the sheer epicness of the plot that had me wondering if it was right for her. I could see her being bored within the first few minutes and then wanting to leave just as I was getting into it.

As it turned out, Les Miserables was everything Rose wanted it to be and more. It was such a big hit with her that she’s been belting out tunes from the film (almost nonstop) since Christmas Day. Susan Boyle has nothing on Rose’s version of “I Dreamed a Dream.” Of course, I did need to remind her that “Lovely Ladies” isn’t suitable for Ms. Loe’s 2nd grade class.

She’s hoping the DVD is released in time for the Easter Bunny to leave a copy in her basket.

Everyone loves a good film, but I’ve found that a kid’s enthusiasm for the medium far exceeds that of their adult counterparts. It’s so more of a, well, event, for them.

Who doesn’t love a storm trooper? Photo: Lone Star Wind Orchestra

As far as I know, there’s no Sundance Film Festival for children, but the KidFilm Festival at the Angelika Film Center in Dallas this weekend comes pretty close. This annual event, now in its 29th year, is chocked full of movie fun for you and the tinies. In addition to the fabulous children’s films from around the globe, you’ll also have a chance to meet author/illustrator Peter H. Reynolds. He’ll be there celebrating the 10th anniversary of the publication of his book The Dot. There will also be a screening of The Wizard of Oz. Kids are encouraged to dress up as their favorite character.

And speaking of The Wizard of Oz, you won’t want to miss Oz with Orchestra at Bass Performance Hall.  Experience the brilliantly restored 1939  film the way it was meant to be seen – on the big screen, backed by the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. This, my friends, will bring the idea of “movie magic” to a whole new level.

And speaking of orchestras (don’t you love my segues?), the Lone Star Wind Orchestra has a treat in store for those who can’t get enough of movie soundtracks.  The Once Upon a Time program at the  Meyerson will feature the music of John Williams’ Star Wars, Harry Potter, Superman and The Cowboys. There will also be a special appearance by Darth Vader and other Star Wars characters in the lobby during intermission.

Therese Powell is an Art&Seek calendar coordinator and KERA-TV producer.  She spends most of her free time seeking out adventures for her 7-year-old daughter, Rose. Tell us about your quirky kid adventures by leaving a comment. Or e-mail Therese at tpowell@kera.org.