Excerpt: The end of 2011 brought us War Horse and We Bought a Zoo , which were films that really poured on the sentiment. They were also films that I overall liked, mainly because their aim to be well-meaning and sweet-natured did not affect my judgment on other aspects of the films to arrive at an appropriate decision.
Conclusion: There is a dearth of family films that aren't wisecracking computer-animated comedies. To that end, Dolphin Tale is a welcome something different. At the same time, its uplifting story is very by-the-numbers and treacly, more what you'd expect from a forgotten '90s family drama than a major new 3D motion picture. If a PG-rated animal movie in which the animal doesn't talk and fart sounds just like what you'd like to see, then definitely make a point to see this.
Excerpt: When I was in elementary school we’d begin every school year telling the teacher what we wanted to be when we grew up. While my go to answer was “Paleontologist” – a was a touch obsessed with dinosaurs – easily the most popular answer was “Marine Biologist.” It made perfect sense: kids love going to the beach, it’s much cooler than saying “Veterinarian”, and both Free Willy and Flipper came out when I was between the ages of six and nine.
Excerpt: The crowd-pleasing new interspecies buddy drama Dolphin Tale reunites Ashley Judd with Bug costar Harry Connick Jr., but, animal-themed titles aside, it would be difficult to imagine two more different films. Bug is a punishingly intense psychodrama; Dolphin Tale is as casual as a pleasant afternoon nap and about as substantive. For extra verisimilitude and heartwarming effect, the film even stars Winter, the dolphin whose tale it chronicles.
Excerpt: An amazing heart-warming tale, pardon the pun, based on a real story is related in "Dolphin Tale". This movie will be embraced by young audiences as an exciting adventure in an adult world. Older kids may find it formulaic as adversity is transformed into triumph, but nonetheless it's stirring viewing. The dolphin is a scene stealing star that puts the rest of the cast in the drink despite their solid performances in this family friendly fun film. Move over Flipper.