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Judy Blume Forever ★★★½ and Super Mario Bros. (PG) ★★½

By April 23, 2023May 1st, 2023Backstage Pass

“Judy Blume Forever”

I screened the excellent documentary during the Sundance Film Festival in January 2023, and loved the film.

Most know author Judy Blume books as her name is synonymous with the joy and agony of being an 11- or 12-year-old. Directors Davina Pardo and Leah Wolchok present a full portrait of her life beginning in 1938 in New Jersey, from her transition to adult novels, her letter writing to adoring fans, and her retirement in Key West, FL.

Blume understood adolescence; she wrote bluntly, explaining awkward situations and exploring solutions. She dives deep into puberty, explaining what is happening while slowly guiding through the process.

Blume also wrote books for younger kids as well, “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing,” “Superfudge,” “Blubber” and “Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great,” were popular books with my fourth and fifth-grade students when I was teaching Gifted Literature. On numerous occasions, I read her books aloud to my students as they are so well-written and engaging.

An excellent biography, showcasing Blume reading her novels while lovingly reminiscing about her characters.

Sarah Knight Adamson@January 30, 2023

“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” (G)

“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” is now playing in theaters to packed audiences. It’s animation and based on the popular 80s video game of two brothers, Mario, voiced by (Chris Pratt) and Luige (Charlie Day), from the Nintendo game corporation in Japan. Wow, the film is colorful and eye-popping, especially with the rainbow speedway track. Although, I can’t recommend the movie as it’s too dark in tone for kids and has way too much violence. I’d say skip it in theaters.

Mario Bros, unfortunately borrowed Guy Ritchie’s playbook from his disaster of a movie “Aladdin.” Yep, there’s torture in “Super Mario Bros,” just as in “Aladdin,” it mirrors electric shocking Toad until Princess Peach (Anya Taylor-Joy) agrees to marry Bowser (Jack Black) or King Koopad, just as “The Sultan” ruler of Agrabah, Princess Jasmine’s father is tortured until she agrees to marry Jarfar. Nope, not on my watch. Physical bullying to get your way is never okay. Hmm…what does that teach kids?

Directors: Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic
Writer: Matthew Fogel
Studio: Universal
Run Time: 1 hour 32 minutes
In theaters now

Sarah Knight Adamson© April 23, 2023