With the kids home for the summer, sometimes a couple hours in a comfortable, air-conditioned movie theater can be a parent's best friend. Here are 10 movies that will be on the tyke's mind during their extended break, some of which may also appeal to some your more sophisticated sensibilities.
'Kung Fu Panda: The Kaboom of Doom'
Opening: Friday, May 27
Starring: Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Gary Oldman
What It's About: Jack Black is back in the anthropomorphized-panda-with-martial-arts-skills role that he was born to play. This time Po, who has become a Kung Fu master, leads the Furious Five on a wisecrack-filled mission to prevent Emperor Albino Peacock Lord Shen (Oldman) from taking over China.
'Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer'
Opening: Friday, June 10
Starring: Jordana Beatty, Heather Graham, Paris Mosteller
What It's About: Judy Moody thinks her summer is going to be a bummer after her parents nix her circus camp idea. But when her folks unexpectedly have to go to California and her wacky aunt moves in to babysit, Judy devises an elaborate game to keep herself entertained and learns that the greatest thrills can happen close to home. Based on the popular children's book series by Megan McDonald.
'Mr. Popper's Penguins'
Opening: Friday, June 17
Starring: Jim Carrey, Angela Lansbury, Carla Gugino
What It's About: The classic children's book about penguins and humans living under the same roof gets a live-action adaptation starring famous man-child Jim Carrey and six actual gentoo penguins. To accommodate the Antarctic wildlife the movie was filmed on a refrigerated sound stage. Although we're going to assume there was some serious SFX going on in the preview scene in which Carrey performs an elaborate dance routine with his flightless friends.
Opening: Friday, June 24
Starring: Owen Wilson, Larry the Cable Guy, Michael Caine, Eddie Izzard
What It's About: Race car Lightning McQueen (Wilson) and his faithful tow truck Mater (Larry the Cable Guy) leave the States so McQueen can compete in the World Grand Prix. Mater finds himself caught up in international intrigue and has to balance his loyalties to McQueen and his exciting new role as a secret agent. This time around the animation is all in 3D.
Opening: Friday, July 8
Starring: Kevin James, Adam Sandler, Leslie Bibb, Rosario Dawson
What It's About: A kindly but schlubby zookeeper (James) believes he needs to get a more glamorous job to win his dream girl (Dawson). Not wanting to lose their beloved zookeeper, the animals concoct a plan to help him get the girl -- and it involves revealing that they can talk. Audiences should buy the whole animals-talking thing because it's still more feasible than a James/Dawson coupling.
featuring Harry Potter, Winnie the Pooh, the Smurfs and more!