Kids Film Festival Coming in June

How Do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon?My kids love to go to the movies, but when trips to the theater mean spending $100 a pop, it’s hard to be enthusiastic… especially when good kids movies are few and far between. So I’m intrigued by the upcoming Kids First! Film Festival, part of the summer sessions program at the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s Outreach College.

Beginning Sunday, June 13, then continuing every other Sunday through July 18, families are invited to enjoy a variety of films for free at the UH Art Auditorium.

You’re not going to find “Shrek 3” on the marquee, however. The most commercial names are Wow Wow Wubbzy and Barbie. The Kids First! program — a traveling film festival run by The Coalition for Quality Children’s Media — is specifically “free of gratuitous violence; race, gender, or religious bias; and condescension towards children.”  Though, there might be a little of the latter. I’m guessing that a number of the films have an overt message, like, “Plastic Perils of the Pacific,” “Do Unto Others,” and “Wubbzy Goes Green.”

On the plus side, many of the films are based on children’s books, and lesser-known characters. Fans of Jane Yolen can catch “How Do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon?” and “The Girl Who Cried Flowers.” The slate includes lots of animation, some live action fiction, and even a documentary.

Each Sunday includes two to nine movies, grouped by age. Really young kids can attend July 11, those aged 8-12 would probably like the July 18 set. But I’m pretty sure kids of all ages could find something to enjoy any day.

Frankly, the titles may be hit or miss, but the experience of getting out of the house, going somewhere new, and sitting in a large auditorium will probably be more than enough. You definitely can’t beat the price!

Details here.

3 Responses

  1. I would love to host a few of the favorites at the film festival being held at EXP-CON at the Neal Blaisdell Center, November 13-14, 2010. This would give children a place to see what the next step in production would be and get to meet with other local producers, prop designers, etc. Any thoughts?

  2. Ryan says:

    You should get in touch with the Outreach College, or go directly to The Coalition for Quality Children’s Media. They’ve probably got the contacts you need for exhibition rights.

  3. Ann Brandman says:

    Thanks so much for the mention of the UH KIDS FIRST! Film Festival. What’s fun about the event is that it is truly a film festival for kids since children must jury the films before they’re selected. The Festival gives a break to parents (we’ve got grandparents who come annually too) who enjoy the price (free), the air-conditioning and sometimes seeing their own favorite stories on the screen. Plus we have door prizes…which the kids like a lot. Hope to see you there!

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