When I used to to have the afternoon shift here at KXKZ one of my favorite segments was Movie Mania, a long since abandoned contest in which we played a movie clip and the first caller to name that movie won some free rentals from Blockbuster. Now, in the age of streaming video and Redbox, the brick-and-mortar movie rental store seems like a quaint memory from some bygone era. At the time, though, renting DVDs was all the rage.

Now I still love movies, but as the father of an 18 month old boy, I don’t have a lot of spare time to spend watching them. When my wife and I watch a movie it’s usually something animated we put on for background noise while we’re chasing a toddler around the house.

Despite my grown-up movie dry spell, I’m going to try to give you some recommendations of recent movies I’ve enjoyed.

For the kids:



Jim Parsons as the bumbling hero, “O” charms and Steve Martin as the clueless and cowardly leader of the alien race “The Boov” is hilarious. There are plenty of jokes for the adults being forced to watch and lots of cute colorful characters for the kids. This one holds a special place in my heart because it was the first thing my son ever really laughed at on TV. All it took was a fat cat named Pig wiggling around to make him LOL.

For Mom and Dad

About Time


Warning: This is officially a chick flick! But I really liked it. Honestly. I may have even got something in my eye toward the end resulting in the appearance that I was crying. I was initially resistant to this because Rachel McAdams had already starred in The Time Travellers Wife  and, call me crazy, but a time-travel rom com doesn’t seem like a great idea to do once, much less twice. The odd magical realism of including time travel in this otherwise very grounded, non sci-fi film works. Somehow. Maybe it’s the effortless nerdy charm exhibited by Domnhall Gleeson that makes the bonkers concept work. It doesn’t hurt that the fantastic Bill Nighy plays Domnhall’s father and guide to time-travel. It’s less of a Back to the Future style romp than it is a metaphor for second chances. How would you live if you had another chance to get things right?

In conclusion…
They aren’t the newest movies available, but if you are anything like me and my wife, you’ve got some serious catching up to do when it comes to new movies and you just want something good. I will bring you a couple of movie reviews for the parent in a hurry every week here on Big Z Country. One for the kids, and one for after the kids have gone to bed.