A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Twinkle Toes Lights Up New York is the second movie from Skechers Entertainment promoting a line of sparkly shoes for girls. Twinkle Toes and her two best friends have wholesome adventures, share conversations in "cool-speak," and learn lightweight lessons. In this case, Twilight quickly realizes that being a team player is way better than hogging the limelight. Low on budget, quality, and originality, it's entertaining enough to engage its target audience. No villains here and no scares, but no substance or heart either.
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What's the story?
In TWILIGHT TWINKLE TOES LIGHTS UP NEW YORK, Twilight (Joey Singer) has sooo been looking forward to summer camp with her two best buddies. So when her dad (Kyle Hebert) announces that he's going to direct a Broadway musical and they'll be living in New York City for the summer, Twilight is terribly disappointed. Not for long, though. The bright lights, big city, and chance to join the dance troupe in the show make a big impact on the starry-eyed girl. Even living in a dilapidated apartment and missing her friends can't check Twilight’s enthusiasm. What's more, she finds the key to a treasure chest and uncovers wonderful new information about her deceased, very talented mom. Meanwhile back at home, Sporty Short (Jamie Sara Lewis) and Jordan (Robbie Daymond) have their hands full coping with Twilight's pesky pet bunny. But the heart of the story is taking place in New York City. Only a misstep threatens Twilight's extraordinary summer, a misstep that can be resolved by our heroine's realization that being a star means much more than simply being center stage.
Is it any good?
In spite of its cheesy animation and music, as well as gratingly exaggerated "hip" dialogue and predictable outcomes, this Skechers DVD will probably appeal to its target audience: little girls. On the plus side, it's an upbeat, squeaky-clean film with a positive message, mostly positive role models, and an element of diversity in its animated characters. On the other hand, the primary objectives seem to be creating a cheerful diversion -- selling shoes, and building yet another franchise that cross-promotes film and merchandise. As an example, the whole of the content in the "original Broadway musical" is a short, barely adequate dance sequence with music from The Nutcracker. Little girls deserve better, if only to begin to discern the difference between enriching entertainment and passable time-wasting coupled with consumerism.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the tie-in between Twinkle Toes and the Skecher shoes so prominently displayed in the movie. Why is it important for families to be aware of the commercial goals of a film made for kids? Does seeing Twinkle in her shoes that "sparkle, shimmer, and shine" increase kids' desire to buy them?
This movie mentions some important jobs necessary for creating a Broadway musical. Find out what a choreographer does. What does a production designer do? A stage manager?
What did Twilight learn about teamwork in this story? How is "teamwork" in performance the same as or different from teamwork as we know it in sports? In what other activities is being a good team player important?
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