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Upcoming movies are suitable for families

Monday, February 04, 2019 - Updated: 4:48 pm

NEW YORK (CNS) — The following are capsule reviews of movies recently reviewed by Catholic News Service.

“A Dog’s Way Home” (Columbia): Canine cuteness abounds in this quest-based adventure, adapted by director Charles Martin Smith from the novel by W. Bruce Cameron (who co-wrote the screenplay with his wife, Cathryn Michon). But various elements make the film unsuitable for the youngsters at whom it’s partially aimed. Adopted by an affectionate Denver-based medical student (Jonah Hauer-King) and his psychologically scarred veteran mom (Ashley Judd), a stray Pitbull-mix puppy (voice of Bryce Dallas Howard) settles into a happy domesticated life. But a local animal control officer (John Cassini) has it in for the pooch, and she is sent away to prevent her being impounded and euthanized. Not realizing the arrangement is temporary, she resolves to make her own way back home. Along the grueling 400-mile journey, she faces various dangers, including a showdown with a pack of wolves and an encounter with an ill-fated homeless man (Edward James Olmos) that are much too scary for little viewers. She also finds shelter, briefly, with a gay couple. Grown-ups with a soft spot for cuddly creatures will take all this in stride, though there’s little on offer here beyond a lovable face, a waggly tail and some droll dog’s-eye-view commentary on human behavior. Considerable peril, a benignly viewed homosexual relationship. The Catholic News Service classification is A-3 — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG — parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.

“Dragon Ball Super: Broly” (Fox): This Japanese anime film is strictly for fans of its fantasy franchise, which has spawned 19 previous movies and countless video games. In a distant corner of the galaxy, a master race produces two potential leaders, one (voice of Sean Schemmel) grows up to be good, the other (voice of Vic Mignogna) joins the dark side, and a fight for supremacy ensues. With flashing candy-colored animation and relentless martial arts action, director Tatsuya Nagamine offers up little more than a series of noisy clashes. Potentially scary fantasy violence and two mild oaths. The CNS classification is A-2 — adults and adolescents. The MPAA rating is PG.

“Glass” (Universal): Long on eerie atmosphere but wanting in coherence, director M. Night Shyamalan’s thriller reunites characters from two of his previous films, 2000’s “Unbreakable” and “Split” from 2016, for a prolonged meditation on the possible real-life existence of superheroes. Firmly opposed to the idea is a therapist (Sarah Paulson) who claims to specialize in treating those with delusions of DC or Marvel-style grandeur. She gets the opportunity to try to convince a security expert who moonlights as a vigilante (Bruce Willis) and a schizophrenic murderer (James McAvoy) that they are merely human when they join a former comic-book gallery owner, rare disease victim and true believer in extraordinary capabilities (Samuel L. Jackson) under confinement at the asylum where she works. Many of the grown-ups for whom the movie is acceptable will find the debate on which it hinges pointless while they will also likely be put off by the bloodletting in which it briefly indulges. Much violence with considerable gore, including an off-screen act of cannibalism, a few gruesome images, a couple of uses of profanity, occasional crude language, an obscene gesture. The CNS classification is A-3 — adults. The MPAA rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.


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