Friday, September 23, 2011

Dolphin Tale Review and other weekend stuff

This is why, when I worked at a newspaper, all my headline suggestions were rejected! Uninspiring for a headline, but hey, something's gotta go there.

This weekend, there are lots of new movies coming out, including Dolphin Tale. I was able to see this and highly recommend it for families.

The film is the tale of Winter, a dolphin swimming near Florida's shores who gets tangled up in fishing ropes and nets. One of the ropes wraps around her, just above her tail, and eventually the tale has to be amputated. Eventually, with the help of Sawyer, the young boy who found her stranded on the beach, and a military prosthetic maker, Winter gets a new tail.

Clearly, this story is supposed to be heartwarming. And it is. The thing I liked most about the movie is it is sweet and heartwarming and touching without any gimmicks or things thrown in to make it super syrupy or forced. The two main human characters are the kids--Sawyer and Hazel--are both being raised by single parents. In sappier, crappier movies, filmmakers would try to force a love story between these adults. Doesn't happen in Dolphin Tale.  In the film, Sawyer finds out about the prosthetic maker when his favorite cousin returns wounded from Afghanistan. Now, a sappier, crappier movie might have made the cousin an amputee victim, but this one didn't. The guy was injured, but he still had all his limbs. However, he could relate to Winter.

The movie is based on a true story, and I think what makes it work is they kept true to that story instead of trying to Hollywood it up with gimmicks. This is a great story wonderfully acted and I think your whole family will enjoy it. The only warning I would offer is people with small children should go to the site to see if there is anything they think might bother their child about the movie. It's a wonderful site that breaks down every possible scary or even mildly could-possibly-be disturbing thing. My 4-year-old loved the movie, but she was concerned a lot about the rope around the tail and how that caused the tail to "fall off." [I didn't really have the heart to correct her and tell her they cut it off.] So, definitely read that site's take on the movie, and make a decision if you have young or sensitive children.

As to other things, the Hyattsville Arts Festival is this weekend. That should be lots of fun if it's not too rainy. Other happenings are on the calendar.

That's about all for me. On Monday, I'll give you my take on the last week of All My Children. Feel free to share yours with me, if you like.

Have a great weekend!

-Hyattsville Mom

p.s. I just thought of another headline: Dolphin Tale: Not Sappy or Crappy?  What do you think?

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