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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that The Daniel Tiger Movie: Won't You Be Our Neighbor? is the first-ever movie from the team behind the charming animated series inspired by the lovable, iconic tiger character from Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. Daniel is the perfect stand-in for the typical preschooler, and kids will love the way he talks directly to them, bringing them into his world and encouraging them to share their thoughts out loud. The movie has a big focus on emotions and how to regulate and express them, as Daniel and his friends deal with relatable issues like meeting new people and moving to a new town. It's strongly centered on themes of family, friendship, empathy, and teamwork, as well as what makes a community feel like home.
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What's the story?
THE DANIEL TIGER MOVIE: WON'T YOU BE OUR NEIGHBOR? centers on an exciting new development in the Neighborhood of Make-Believe: Daniel Tiger is getting a brand-new next-door neighbor! The imaginative little tiger cub is beyond thrilled at the idea of a new playmate for himself and baby sister Margaret, but his new friend Jodi isn't so sure about her unfamiliar new house and town. Will she be able to fall asleep in her new room? What's this weird "trolley" thing, and where does it go? Daniel and his pals will have to work together to help Jodi come out of her shell and explore the neighborhood, and ultimately they all learn that anywhere you go with your family -- that's home.
Is it any good?
Packed with helpful life lessons on making new friends and navigating unfamiliar social situations, this movie is as gentle and sweet as the animated series it sprang from. Not only does Daniel reach out to help a neighbor feel more comfortable in her new surroundings, he also learns how much he has in common with this new family, despite the fact that they're the only platypuses he's ever met before. The Daniel Tiger Movie: Won't You Be Our Neighbor? is a charming and emotionally intelligent meditation on community and family, and the way its titular character gets chatty with the audience helps draw kids into the magic right from the start. Subsequent episodes of the animated series will further expand on the issues raised in the movie, addressing themes like getting used to a new school, feeling jealous over new friendships, and so on.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the way the people in Daniel's neighborhood come together to make the Platypus family feel welcome in Won't You Be Our Neighbor?. What roles did the different members of the community play in making this happen?
Kids: Talk about how it might feel to be the new person in an unfamiliar environment. How did being in her empty new house make Jodi feel? How did Daniel and friends use their curiosity and empathy to help her out? Why are these important character strengths?
- In theaters: September 17, 2018
- On DVD or streaming: May 14, 2019
- Cast: Devan Cohen, Heather Bambrick, Ted Dykstra
- Studio: PBS Distribution
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Character strengths: Curiosity, Empathy, Teamwork
- Run time: 47 minutes
- MPAA rating: NR
- Awards/Honors: Common Sense Selection
- Last updated: May 20, 2020
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