Eight BelowBy Jane Louise Boursaw
MPAA Rating: PG
He promises the dogs he’ll return for them as soon as possible, but Mother Nature has other plans. A wicked storm sweeps across the frozen landscape, preventing a plane trip back to retrieve the dogs. Consequently, they’re forced to struggle for survival alone in the intense frozen wilderness for more than six months, until the adventurers can mount a rescue mission.
PRE-SCHOOLER (ages 2-5): With scenes of suffering and peril involving both humans and dogs, this movie isn’t suited for little ones. But kids five and older might enjoy “Balto,” an animated movie about an outcast half-wolf/half-dog who risks his life to prevent a deadly epidemic in Nome, Alaska, in 1925. This film is based on a true story, which inspired the Iditarod dog sled race.
GRADE-SCHOOLER (ages 6-10): Walt Disney knows how to appeal to kids this age -- with lots of action, a bit of peril, and big, furry animals! And these dogs have so much character, they’re bound to capture the hearts of kids and adults everywhere. This movie can also teach us a lot about love, trust, and courage.
TWEEN/TEEN (ages 11+): This amazing story is a testament to the powerful will to survive against all odds, and the importance of friendship and family -- even if your "family" is a team of dogs. Sweeping landscapes and a wonderful Disney production make this a winner. It’ll have you and your kids on the edge of your seats.
Jane Louise Boursaw is a freelance journalist specializing in the movie and television industries.