Archives for March 11, 2019

Octonauts: Reef Rescue – Amazing Way To Learn A Lot About Different Sea Creatures

The Octonauts are a team of adventurers who explore the world’s oceans, rescue aquatic creatures and protect their habitats – from the bustling eco-system along the Amazon River to the deepest depths of the Mariana Trench. Deploying a set of aquatic vehicles, Captain Barnacles, daredevil ex-pirate, Kwazii, medic Peso and the rest of the crew embark on missions around the globe before returning safely to their home base, the Octopod. On this exciting DVD, join the Octonauts as they journey to a colorful coral reef to rescue the creatures that live there! Come along with Dashi as she saves a pair of surfing snails. And when poisonous sea snakes get stranded on a beach, Peso must figure out a way to get them back into the ocean. Enjoy these adventures and more with the Octonauts! KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Katherine S. comments, “I really like the DVD Octonauts: Reef Rescue, because we experience a new adventure with each episode.  The animation is simple and has a rainbow of splashy colors.” Lukas L. adds, “The character animations are very simple and that works for me.  Also, they have the most adorable little personalities and vegetable helpers.” KIDS FIRST! Adult Reviewer Rachel V. wraps it up with, “The Octonauts are a group of anthropomorphic animals that go on maritime adventures which often include educational experiences with undersea creatures and locations. Despite how cutesy this series may look on the surface, it has a decent amount of depth in its premise, with the characters going on adventures that feel like something you might find in Star Trek.” See their full reviews below.

Octonauts: Reef Rescue

By Katherine S., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 11

I really like the DVD Octonauts: Reef Rescue, because we experience a new adventure with each episode.  The animation is simple and has a rainbow of splashy colors.  The music is also very playful, supporting the kaleidoscope of action in each different rescue mission.

Octonauts: Reef Rescue has a lot of lively characters, led by Captain Barnacles, who is a bear.  His crew also includes a number of other animals including a penguin, an ex-pirate kitten and a sea otter.  The most creative characters are vegimals – yes, part vegetable, part animal.  And, each rescue ends swimmingly! (ha ha) The DVD includes eight episodes, each a different adventure.  It is an amazing place to learn a lot about different sea creatures including a convict fish, very cute baby sea turtles, a tiger shark, poisonous yellow-bellied sea snakes and my favorite – surfing snails.  I had no idea snails could surf on bubbles.

There are so many positive messages throughout this DVD.  My favorite is the importance of team work.  The episodes also show how to protect the sea habitat and how much hard work and fun it is to rescue sea life. 

Octonauts Reef Rescue is very kid-friendly. It promotes positive social behavior, teamwork and kindness to one another and animals. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 2 through 8. Adults will also enjoy this as they watch it with their kids and will probably learn something new. This DVD is available now, so look for it. I recommend it.

Octonauts: Reef Rescue
By Lukas L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12

I surprisingly really enjoyed watching the loveable Octonauts: Reef Rescue. The character animations are very simple and that works for me.  Also, they have the most adorable little personalities and vegetable helpers.

The stories on this DVD are about a polar bear, cat, a penguin and their friends that explore, rescue and protect underwater sea creatures and their habitats. In these episodes, we learn about baby sea turtles, sunfish, tiger sharks and more. There is always a conflict in every episode and they manage to come up with the cleverest ways to save the day.

The series stars voice-talent actors Ross Breen, Teresa Gallagher and Simon Greenall and is produced by Adam Idelson.  I really like the animation and give props to the animator Willian Muir. He keeps it very simple so that all ages can enjoy watching it. It is not just the main characters that I enjoyed. Oh, no no no, I really enjoyed the animated sea creatures as well. A lot of these sea creatures have very hard textures to mimic, so they make it through very nicely, plus we get a little sneak peak of the actual animals themselves at the end and that’s pretty cool.

This is the kind of where they make learning fun, which they succeed at.  There is not really a moral, but I it definitely promotes a love of ocean life. This show is great at teaching kids about marine life and their habitat. When I was younger, I was obsessed with animals of all sorts and I adored this show. Watching it again reminds me why I loved it so much!  There are not a lot of other shows that are dedicated to teaching kids about ocean life, so that’s a plus.

I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 4 to 9. The DVD is available now, so look for it.

Octonauts: Reef Rescue

By Nathalia J. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 10

Are you ready to dive into adventure with your favorite underwater explores? This 90 minute, eight-episode, action-packed, powerful, thrilling and stimulating DVD is loaded with excitement in every episode. You get to join the Octonauts as they go on adventures through the glamorous, lovely, attractive and stunning reef to rescue creatures in need of help.

The Octonauts are a team of adventurers that explore the world’s oceans and protect the creatures and habitats therein. You get to watch the Octonauts save a pair of surfing snails through a rutted wave in the tide and save baby turtles from an enormous wave and explore the lives of sunfish, yellow belly sea snakes and colorful fish. 

The lead characters are Ross Breen (Captain Barnacles), Teresa Gallagher (Dashi), Simon Greenall (Captain Barnacles) and produced by Adam Idelson.

This show promotes positive social behavior by presenting kind actions through rescuing others. It promotes team work, working together and solving problems on an ocean adventure. Sounds like fun, huh?! This DVD is a great way for kids to learn about reefs and so much more. Each episode is filled with beautifully colored stories that will keep you engaged.

My favorite episode is the most adventurous and informational Episode 7, because it shares multiple facts about the biggest fish in the ocean, sunfish.  Fun fact: When sunfish get the case of the itchies, smart fish masticate the itches off the sunfish which stay in the sunfish’s skin.

I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 11. This DVD is now available now so look for it!

“Krazy Krafts Day for KIDS” Sat. March 30th 2019 10:00 am-4:00 pm

“The Little Printer Dude” represents all the hands-on printing, cartooning, calligraphy, origami, paper making and screen printing activities @ The International Printing Museum’s ” Krazy Krafts for Kids Day” Sat. March 30th 2019 in Carson, CA

All day on-going activities at 
The International Printing Museum
315 W. Torrance Blvd, Carson, CA 90745
(310) 515-7166
Admission: $10/Admission  

For Kids and the” Kid-at-Heart”in all of us….A fun event for the upcoming Holidays!

Where budding ” Gutenbergs” and “Horace Greeleys” can observe and join in on”Hands-on” demonstrations in Printing, Paper Making, Paper Marbling, Cartooning, Book Arts, Origami, Calligraphy, Screen Printing (bring a T-shirt), Pago Sculptures, Typewriting as well as mini-tours of the museum’s extraordinary collection of “operating” antique printing presses and the casting of type via the wonderfully noisy Linotype machine.  Plus other surprises!!
Big Kids always welcome!

Ample Free Parking as usual!

The International Printing Museum.

Celebrate Spring’s Arrival at Orange County’s Only Cherry Blossom Festival

Sixth Annual Festival Honors Japanese Culture, Offers Entertainment,
and Delicious Food and Drinks 

Greet spring with a warm konnichiwa – or hello in Japanese – at this year’s Orange County Cherry Blossom Festival. During the weekend of March 15 – 17, thousands will gather at Huntington Beach’s Central Park to celebrate the richness of Japanese and Japanese American culture in Southern California. Sakura Matsuri, or Cherry Blossom Festival, is a widespread tradition in Japan and celebrates the gorgeous pink blossoms of the cherry tree, spring’s arrival and represents a time of renewal and enjoyment of nature.

The 2019 Orange County Cherry Blossom Festival expands on this tradition and celebrates the food, drink, crafts, music, and dance of Japanese Americans and the rootedness and hybridity of this culture in SoCal. The Festival provides the broader community with an opportunity to see and hear traditional elements of Japanese culture as well the many contemporary and hybrid forms that have emerged in the United States. Whether it is taiko drumming, folk music, classical dance, jazz, cosplay dance troupes, symphonic rock, DJs, crafts, Asahi, sake, Nintendo Switch tournaments or the 20+ food vendors, the festival is sure to offer something for everyone to enjoy.

This free event features more than 50 vendors and 27 different performing groups. The Festival will for the first time include two evening events, the Sakura Night Market, spanning two evenings Friday 3/15 and Saturday 3/16 where the whole park will be lit up with excitement, food, drink, and entertainment. The full festival schedule will be announced March 1 at and on social media.

Now in its sixth year, the OC Cherry Blossom Festival is a beloved annual event that was inspired by and honors Huntington Beach’s very own sister city, Anjo, Japan. The festival also raises the funds to run a youth exchange program, sending local students to Japan to experience the culture of Anjo first-hand. In return, local families host Japanese students who gain a better understanding our local community and way of life. Huntington Beach’s connection to Anjo, Japan dates back to 1982 and the Sister City program was officially incorporated in 1992, forever connecting the two cities and their traditions.

The Cherry Blossom Festival hours are Friday, March 15 from 5 – 9pm, Saturday, March 16 from 10am9pm and Sunday, March 17 from 10am4pm. The festival will take place at Central Park, 18000 Goldenwest St. in Huntington Beach. For more information please visit Connect with the festival on FacebookInstagram and Twitter at @occbfest.

Orange County Cherry Blossom Festival.

Captain Marvel – A Must-Watch for Any Superhero Fan!

Captain Marvel is an extraterrestrial Kree warrior who finds herself caught in the middle of an intergalactic battle between her people and the Skrulls. Living on Earth in 1995, she keeps having recurring memories of another life as U.S. Air Force pilot Carol Danvers. With help from Nick Fury, Captain Marvel tries to uncover the secrets of her past while harnessing her special superpowers to end the war with the evil Skrulls. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Benjamin P. comments, “This film makes good use of its 90s setting. There are a lot of jokes involving technology and pop culture from this period that work well. Also, the soundtrack has a nice selection of songs from the 90s that complement the film very well.” Arjun N. adds, Captain Marvel is a solid, if slightly flawed entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. A talented cast and savvy direction make for a crowd pleaser. Any superhero fan must watch this as the hype for Avengers: Endgame arises.” See their full reviews below.

Captain Marvel

Benjamin P., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 13

Captain Marvel is a fun, if sometimes flawed superhero adventure that further develops the cosmic landscape of the Marvel movies with good performances from Brie Larson and Samuel L. Jackson.

Captain Marvel takes place in 1995 and follows Vers, a Kree warrior with flaming fists on her way to becoming Captain Marvel who finds herself on Earth after a mission gone wrong. She teams up with a detective named Nick Fury to pick apart the secrets of her past. Meanwhile, Vers has to stop the shapeshifting Skrulls from infiltrating the planet and putting an end to the war with the Kree.

I like the performances in this film. Brie Larson is good as Captain Marvel and brings an understated verve to the role. Larson is good at delivering quips, but also has a few pretty powerful moments in her performance that help develop Captain Marvel as a character. Samuel L. Jackson is also good as Nick Fury. This is a different Fury from what we’re used to with Jackson offering some nuanced clues about the changes Fury will face in the future. In Larson and Jackson’s third onscreen collaboration, the duo brings great chemistry and the scenes with them playing off of each other are easily some of this film’s best moments.

This film makes good use of its 90s setting. There are a lot of jokes involving technology and pop culture from this period that work well. Also, the soundtrack has a nice selection of songs from the 90s that complement the film very well. The setting doesn’t feels like an attempt to cash in on nostalgia, but the 90s theme gives the film a more pronounced tone and humor. I also really enjoyed the element of mystery that comes with the Skrulls’ ability to shapeshift into anyone and its clever use throughout the film.

I do find quite a few flaws with this film. Jude Law’s performance as Yon-Ragg, the Kree leader, is disappointing. He feels so self-serious; it’s as if he’s in a different movie. There is a lot of exposition throughout the first half that, after a while, is a chore to listen to. Action scenes range from well-choreographed to hard to tell what is going on.

I recommend this film for ages 9 to 18, for some sci-fi violence and language and give it 3.5 out of 5 stars. Captain Marvel falls a bit short of being completely marvelous, but it’s enjoyable and well worth the price of admission. I recommend you go see this film when it comes out on March 8, 2019.

Captain Marvel

By Arjun N., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 17

Captain Marvel is a solid, if slightly flawed entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. A talented cast and savvy direction make for a crowd pleaser. Any superhero fan must watch this as the hype for Avengers: Endgame arises.

The story follows Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) as she becomes one of the universe’s most powerful heroes. Set in the 90s, this adventure follows her struggle to regain her past as one mysterious incident created her powers. Amidst this, a galactic war arises between the Kree, her brethren, and the Skrulls, shapeshifting fugitives, as Carol remains the only one powerful enough to end the war. This war takes to Earth, with S.H.I.E.L.D. in its adolescence investigating. With this, Carol must team up with no other than a nascent Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) as the two investigate all sides to this war.

Brie Larson, as Carol Danvers, surprised me and is my favorite character as she is nothing like what the controversial trailers portrayed – hardened and emotionless. In fact, she is very sassy and witty, like Tony Stark, and even humanizes the character with her relatable struggles. Sure she is stoic and hardened to some extent, but she does everything she needs to, as audiences need to be sold of her importance in not just Avengers: Endgame, but the whole MCU, and that’s exactly what we get. Samuel L. Jackson, as Nick Fury, is absolutely incredible, even if certain character decisions from a writing standpoint are very questionable, with one reveal just baffling. The dynamics between Danvers and Fury is one of the movie’s best, with a buddy cop feel to it. It is investing to watch the younger, more inexperienced Fury, with certain nods to his future being a neat addition. The same goes to Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson. It is a welcome surprise to see the simpler days of these two. Ben Mendelsohn, as Talos, also gives his all with his Skrull leader a formidable foe and he is more charismatic for it. As twists and turns reveal, he and his race became a sympathetic asset, with their kind being one of the most intriguing amongst the MCU roster. Last but not least, Jude Law, as Yon-Rogg, is interesting in his mentorship of Carol, and the twists regarding his character add for an emotional edge.

Anna Boden and Ryan Fledge aptly direct the film, with a stylish approach somewhat like Thor: Ragnarok. Every scene is well produced, but the style and vision are sometimes lost amongst the craft. The special effects are mostly on standard, but the de-aging effects for Samuel L. Jackson and Clark Gregg rise far above the standard. They don’t look fake, and all expressions are truly natural. We are truly in the future of seamless CGI. My favorite scene is when Danvers truly becomes Captain Marvel, unleashing her full power amongst an enemy crew.

The message of this film is to never give up. Danvers takes several hits, to the point of giving up, but she always rises up to the challenge. I give this film 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18 due to some intense violence and language. The movie released in theaters on March 8,, 2019, so check it out.