In our weekly family feature, we highlight some great movies that work for the kids and the kids at heart.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Winner of the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" is an awesomely creative and brilliant, original film that takes place in the "Spider-Verse," which contains alternate universes. It is the story not of Peter Parker, per se, although he factors into it. But it is really about Miles Morales, a Puerto-Rican/African American teenager living in New York City.
Miles is a typical teen just trying to make it through high school and dealing with his caring police officer father and mother, and his more free-style street artist uncle. After being bitten by a radioactive spider, happening upon a super-collider to other dimensions, and witnessing the murder of Peter Parker's Spider-Man at the hands of Kingpin, Miles decides to take a stand. He'll become the next Spider-Man and keep his promise to Parker to stop Kingpin's plans to reactivate the collider, which would destroy the city. He'll have some help, too – from several other Spider-Mans from the alternate universes.
‣ Now streaming on: Netflix
The Living Sea
While IMAX's "The Living Sea" was produced a quarter of a century ago, its visual wonders of the oceans below are still immensely captivating, and look amazing in 4K UHD resolution, now available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
Extraordinary footage of whales, jellyfish from the Palau Islands, and other habitats underneath the water is accompanied by narration from actress Meryl Streep and music by Sting. The overall message is still a timely one, about how the ocean is integral to the survival of everyone on Earth, and how we need to do our part to appreciate and conserve it.
‣ Now streaming on: Amazon Prime
Released in 2000, this witty feature about a bunch of chickens trying to fly the coop eventually became the highest-grossing stop motion animated picture in history. The heroine of the tale is Ginger (voiced by Julia Sawalha), who's determined to help her fellow chickens escape the farm before the owners turn them into meat pies.
When Rocky the Rooster (voiced by Mel Gibson) gets shot out of his circus canon and crash-lands on the Tweedy farm, Ginger sees their chance. Thinking Rocky can fly, she insists that he teach them, too. Since he can't, the plan eventually evolves into creating a real aircraft so that they can climb aboard and head for the skies.
‣ Now streaming on: Hulu