My husband is at the movies watching Jurassic World with our daughter and extended family. Earlier this summer we watched Jurassic Park with the kids. During the kitchen scene we cracked jokes and made it less intense for them. Before we watched Jurassic Park we showed them the trailer and asked if they still wanted to watch the film. They all yelled, “Yes!” When the movie was over they all yelled, “Again!”

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Jurassic Park was a big hit for us, but we’ve also watched some less scary movies. Every movie we watch together as a family and have a discussion after it’s over. We help them see what parts are fantasy and highlight any good lessons from the film.

Since it’s consistently hitting over 100 degrees here in Texas this summer we’ve kept cool inside watching a lot of movies.

Our current top 6 family movies

 

Song of the Sea

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Song of the Sea is a gorgeous hand drawn film about an Irish folktale witch a character called Sulkies. The folktale tell Sulkies are humans who can also turn into seals. The movie is calm, beautiful, and teaches a great lesson for siblings. Surprisingly, my 6 year old son liked the movie more than my daughter.

 

The Book of Life

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I avoided The Book of Life for a long time, because I thought it would be too freaky. The film is based on the Day of the Dead. I gave in one day and I am so glad I did. The movie isn’t scary or ghoulish. The movie is cute in places and extravagant in others. The music is super fun mixing new songs with old styles. I really like the message of remembering those who have come before you. Perhaps I liked the movie, because in a small way it introduced a piece of Mexican heritage to my half hispanic kids. It helped me understand a piece of San Antonio I’ve always shied away from.

 

Swiss Family Robinson

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We had a great time watching the Swiss Family Robinson. It’s a full of adventure and a fantastical world. The kids didn’t understand the competition between the older brothers, but they cracked up over Francis. They loved the treehouse, pirates, and the animals. It’s a classic family movie.

 

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

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Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is not cinema at its finest, but it’s definitely funny and endearing. I loved how the whole family did things together and ultimately really liked each other. It’s rare to find a film where both the mom and dad exist. Then to have siblings who care about each other and their parents is icing on the cake.

Descendants

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Descendants is Disney Channel’s movie hit of the summer. The film follows the children of Disney’s villains as they enter Auradon High School. I was nervous about all the “evil” stuff, but I knew the villains chose good in the end. The kids don’t do anything really evil other singing about being “rotten to the core.” The movie is silly and full of plot holes, but seeing Kristin Chenoweth sing is always great.

 

Labyrinth

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Labyrinth is a Netflix Instant gem. As a child the movie scared me, but my husband owned the record and loved the music. It seems my daughter took after her father and loves the movie. We did talk about how the goblins are puppets and not real. It’s silly in places and very weird, but you find yourself singing Dance Magic Dance.

Honorable Mention

Big Hero 6 – We saw this in the movie theater twice and bought the movie in April. I didn’t include it in this list, because we played the movie out before the summer even began.

Disappointing

Teen Beach Movie 2 – The plot was too complicated and the songs weren’t memorable. Last summer we played the Teen Beach Movie soundtrack nonstop. Part two missed the fun 60s magic.

Coming Soon

We saw Cinderella in the theater and can’t wait to see it again when the DVD comes out on Sept. 15, 2015. Inside Out comes out November 3, 2015!

What movies has your family loved this summer?