Family Movies

August 14, 1998
Remember last summer at the movies? We had aliens, dinosaurs, explosions, and superheroes. This summer we have some of that, but have you noticed that many of the biggest hits have been from a category that Hollywood likes to ignore: family movies.

Now don't get me wrong, some of the films I'm going to mention as family entertainment have some problems. But the point I am making is that these family films seem to be doing better than the sure-bet action films like Godzilla or Armageddon.

This summer, family films rule. Ones that are already successful are Fox's Dr. Doolittle, Disney's Mulan, and Sony's The Mask of Zorro. Other films destined to be hits that were just released are Fox's Ever After and Disney's Parent Trap. And you could add nearly a dozen other family films that have been respectable at the box office.

What's going on? Hollywood hardly even wants to talk about these films. They avoid the G-rated film at nearly all cost, and rarely expect too many PG-rated films to become box office hits. But every year (and especially this year) families prove them wrong. They want a compelling story and they are quite willing to forego the sex and violence that accompanies PG-13 and R-rated films.

Granted, some of these family films do have their problems. For example, the violence in Zorro is too much and the bathroom humor in Dr. Doolittle is gross. The larger point, however, is that stories about Zorro, Cinderella, a Chinese warrior girl, or a man who talks to animals are popular. In other words, family films are a hit. I hope Hollywood gets the message.

I'm Kerby Anderson of Probe Ministries, and that's my opinion.

© 1998 Probe Ministries International