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The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that there is little to be concerned about in Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas. George creates several messes and engages in semi-dangerous activities, like climbing to the top of a Christmas tree that then knocks down all the trees. In one scene, the Man in the Yellow Hat and his friend accidently start a fire and the fire truck arrives, but it's brief and treated lightly. George gets all the toys he wanted for Christmas. The previews include trailers (for two Barbie movies and a semi-violent Bionicle movie), and two commercials -- one for Sunmaid products and one for Chuck E. Cheese.
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What's the story?
Curious George is looking forward to Christmas with all the anticipation of a young child in CURIOUS GEORGE: A VERY MONKEY CHRISTMAS. He wakes the Man in the Yellow Hat every morning at 5 a.m. to ask if today's the day. As the days pass, George and the Man prepare for Christmas by shopping for a tree, writing cards, buying a turkey and singing in a holiday pageant. The usual monkey antics ensue where George knocks down all the trees at the Christmas tree lot, and breaks the snow-maker at the museum, but his accidents are easily resolved. But as the holiday gets closer, both the monkey and the man worry about what to get for the other.
Is it any good?
This Curious George holiday movie includes singing, which fits the holiday theme, but seems slightly out of place. Near the end of Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas the Man in the Yellow Hat falls asleep and has a Christmas Carol-esque vision where a dream-like man shows him scenes of George living alternate lives. It's meant to reassure the Man that he is a good "parent" for George, but it really doesn't fit with the story -- or make much sense.
Curious George might annoy some parents, with the squeaky monkey sounds and rather vanilla storylines, but kids get a kick out of the silly monkey no matter what. This movie is no exception -- there are plenty of giggly moments, like when George tries to make a tomato snowman to please the Man in the Yellow Hat, but ends up making a big ketchup-y mess, or when George's friend makes up funny songs to familiar Christmas carol tunes. It's hard not to like Curious George, even if his antics are predictable.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about getting gifts on holidays, like George does in Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas. What have you found to be the best gifts to give? What are the best kind of gifts to receive? Have you ever made gifts instead of buying them? What about giving someone something like a song, like George's friend does for her aunt?
What's the difference between George and the dog in the lobby? How are their personailities different? How does the way they treat their Christmas trees illustrate their likes and dislikes? Who are you more like -- George or the lobby dog?
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