Sometimes, sticking on a nice movie for the kids can be a good way to get some peace and quiet for an hour, especially when you know what they are watching is something they are going to really enjoy. Snuggling up together to watch a movie as a family can also be a relaxing way to spend quality time on a rainy afternoon.
Of course, just like the movie industry as a whole, the family film niche is not completely full of amusing, enjoyable gems, and in fact, some of the movies rated by sites like This Blog Rules as among the worst ever made, were actually movies made for poor, unsuspecting parents and their kids!
Here are three family movies to avoid if you haven’t already had the dubious pleasure of seeing them:
The Cat in the Hat
Dr Seuss is generally divisive, with some people adoring the surreal and whimsical stories and characters and others, as adults at least, writing it off as creepy gibberish. Kids do tend to enjoy the fun world of Seuss’ books, and the Christmas movie The Grinch starring Jim Carrey is still a popular part of many families’ Christmas movie watching traditions.
The Cat in the Hat, however, was a rare miss for actor Mike Myers, better known for his roles in Shrek, Austin Powers and Wayne’s World. In fact, this movie was deemed so bad that Dr Seuss’ estate forbade any further film adaptations of his books based on it.
The Last Airbender
Aimed at older children who enjoyed the Nickleodeon cartoon series Avatar: The Last Airbender – a critically acclaimed show that also became a cult hit with adults – this movie by M. Night Shyalaman has gone down in history as one of the most disappointing live action adaptations of an animation ever.
With embarrassingly poor acting and a plot that makes little sense if you’ve seen the cartoon and absolutely none if you haven’t, this is a movie with no redeeming features, and which served as the final nail in the coffin of Shyalaman’s already fading reputation as a director worth watching.
Caillou’s Holiday Movie
Many parents really hate Caillou, due to having to be exposed to him far more often than would allow most people to keep their sanity, but at least he keeps the kids entertained. However, in this movie, Caillou really does come off more as a very annoying rip off of Charlie Brown, with none of the humor and charm. If your kids are Caillou fans, this may well be a holiday movie to let them watch without you!
There are some really brilliant films that people of all ages can enjoy in the family movie niche, from classics like Toy Story and Shrek through to beautifully made recent releases like Moana and Finding Dory. However, there are also a lot of really quite dreadful movies, so it pays to do a quick scan of some reviews before you settle down to watch!