A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that young Sesame Street fans will no doubt love this holiday special's story and age-appropriate pacing, while parents will appreciate the collective talent of the musical guests. Though there are few overt learning opportunities here, it's a worry-free way to enjoy some family-friendly holiday TV time with your kids.
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What's the story?
In ELMO'S CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN, the loss of a traditional magical object could spell disaster for the upcoming holiday, so it's up to Elmo and his friends to recover the pieces and save Christmas for everyone. The trouble starts when the 10 numbered boxes that make up Stiller the Elf's (voiced by Ben Stiller) tree-shaped Christmas Counter-Downer -- which ticks off time before the holiday arrives -- are scattered, and he all but gives up hope of the holiday coming at all. But for Elmo (Kevin Clash), nothing is impossible. With the help of his fairy-in-training sidekick Abby Cadabby (Leslie Carrara), Elmo sets out to recover the boxes and reassemble the Counter-Downer so Christmas can come on schedule.
Is it any good?
While there's little outright educational quality to Elmo's Christmas Countdown, it's still a great choice to cuddle up in front of with your kids over the holidays. With fun original songs and memorable new spins on classic holiday tunes, it's sure to put kids in the Christmas spirit. And for grown-ups, cameos from personalities like newsman Charles Gibson and Sopranos stars Steve Schirippa and Tony Sirico -- who participate in a chuckle-worthy live-action scene starring roomies Ernie and Bert -- make it more fun than the average preschool DVD. Plus, special guests like Jennifer Hudson, Sheryl Crow, Anne Hathaway, Alicia Keys, Brad Paisley, and Jamie Foxx stop by to help out with the festivities.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the holidays and the spirit of giving. Which characters help Stiller and Elmo recover the lost boxes? Did they ask for anything in return? Why not? Why does it make them feel so good to help out?
Kids: How do you help your friends and family? Do people make more of an effort to help others during the holidays? Why?
How does it feel to give someone a gift? How else can you show someone that you care?
For kids who love the holidays
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