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Parents' Guide to

Our Friend, Martin

By Jennifer Green, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Dated movie about MLK Jr. offers positive lessons for kids.

Movie G 1999 61 minutes
Our Friend, Martin Poster Image

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Kids say (3 ):

There's no disputing the good intentions of this educational movie or the importance and always-relevant lessons of Martin Luther King Jr.'s life and work. Our Friend, Martin seems to have left a lasting impression on two decades of American schoolchildren. But kids today are more media literate than ever, and this animated tale may feel outdated for some and even a bit hokey for others. This could unfortunately undermine its valuable messages and educational usefulness.

Some of the voices of the late-1990s star-studded cast are also likely less familiar to the film's target audience today, diminishing another potential draw. Still, for young audiences, Our Friend, Martin remains a suitable and entertaining introduction to King's values and his role in US history. Middle schoolers and older kids may respond better to more contemporary and realistic movies about King and America's racist past, of which there are quite a few powerful alternatives available.

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