A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this modern retelling of the classic Goldilocks story handily knocks the stuffing out of any "glamour" associated with reality TV. It's a useful starting point for discussion with star-struck kids about the perils of fame and celebrity.
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What's the story?
The Unstable Fables series from the Jim Henson company takes on the classic tale of the little lost girl and the "too hot, too cold, just right" Bears IN UNSTABLE FABLES: GOLDILOCKS AND THE 3 BEARS. As usual, the story is updated and given a funny twist: this time Goldilocks (voiced by Jamie Lynn Spears) is the spoiled celebutante host of a home makeover TV show, and the sloppy but loving Bear family is the recipient of her questionable altruism. A spin-off show is quickly conceived, catapulting the Bears to reality show fame while testing their loving family bonds -- and Goldilocks finds herself with a vested interest in keeping their family together.
Is it any good?
The animated movie, while perhaps not as laugh-out-loud funny as the Unstable Fable's Three Pigs and A Baby, shares the solid storytelling of the other reimagined tales. It dares to dig a little deeper into Goldilock's life -- why was that child wandering around the woods unattended, anyway? There are not-so-subtle riffs on the stereotypes of both celebrity and poverty, and the reality TV industry takes a beating. "Disasters and humiliation -- that's what reality TV is all about!" exclaims Goldilock's weasel agent at one point, and it's hard to argue the point.
Beyond that there are nice scenes about forgiveness and the small things that make a family -- a shared dinner around a table and a kiss on the forehead at bedtime. Kids who have seen the other Unstable Fables may laugh to see the cameos by animated actors from those movies, and this is likely the only kid's movie to make G-rated use of the punchline from the adult film The Aristocrats. A great choice for a family movie night.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the changes that take place in the Bear family once they're on television. Do you think you'd like to participate in a reality show? What do you think the good things would be about celebrity? The bad things? Talk about how the agent and film crew influence the "impromptu" storyline -- do you think that really happens?
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