Diane Howard, Ph.D., Family & Redemptive Movie Journalist, picks her top ten family movies for content and artistry for 2015

by dhoward-9 | created - 04 Jan 2016 | updated - 04 Jan 2016 | Public
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1. Woodlawn (2015)

PG | 123 min | Drama, Sport

57 Metascore

A gifted high school football player must learn to embrace his talent and his faith as he battles racial tensions on and off the field.

Directors: Andrew Erwin, Jon Erwin | Stars: Caleb Castille, Sean Astin, Jon Voight, C. Thomas Howell

Votes: 5,870 | Gross: $14.39M

2. The Peanuts Movie (2015)

G | 88 min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy

67 Metascore

Snoopy embarks upon his greatest mission as he and his team take to the skies to pursue their archnemesis, while his best pal Charlie Brown begins his own epic quest back home to win the love of his life.

Director: Steve Martino | Stars: Noah Schnapp, Bill Melendez, Hadley Belle Miller, Francesca Capaldi

Votes: 38,203 | Gross: $130.18M

3. Cinderella (I) (2015)

PG | 105 min | Drama, Family, Fantasy

67 Metascore

When her father unexpectedly dies, young Ella finds herself at the mercy of her cruel stepmother and her scheming stepsisters. Never one to give up hope, Ella's fortunes begin to change after meeting a dashing stranger.

Director: Kenneth Branagh | Stars: Lily James, Cate Blanchett, Richard Madden, Helena Bonham Carter

Votes: 136,264 | Gross: $201.15M

4. Little Boy (2015)

PG-13 | 106 min | Drama, History, War

30 Metascore

An eight-year-old boy is willing to do whatever it takes to end World War II so he can bring his father home. The story reveals the indescribable love a father has for his little boy and the love a son has for his father.

Director: Alejandro Monteverde | Stars: Jakob Salvati, Emily Watson, David Henrie, Michael Rapaport

Votes: 20,565 | Gross: $6.42M

5. The Good Dinosaur (2015)

PG | 93 min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy

66 Metascore

In a world where dinosaurs and humans live side-by-side, an Apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend.

Director: Peter Sohn | Stars: Jeffrey Wright, Frances McDormand, Maleah Nipay-Padilla, Ryan Teeple

Votes: 88,457 | Gross: $123.09M

6. The Letters (II) (2014)

PG | 114 min | Drama

25 Metascore

A drama that explores the life of Mother Teresa through letters she wrote to her longtime friend and spiritual advisor, Father Celeste van Exem over a nearly 50-year period.

Director: William Riead | Stars: Juliet Stevenson, Rutger Hauer, Max von Sydow, Priya Darshini

Votes: 848 | Gross: $1.65M

7. The Drop Box (2015)

Not Rated | 79 min | Documentary, Biography, News

One winter, a pastor finds an abandoned infant on his church steps, and builds 'a drop box' to rescue any others.

Director: Brian Ivie

Votes: 591

8. Noble (2014)

PG-13 | 100 min | Biography, Drama

63 Metascore

Christina Noble overcomes the harsh difficulties of her childhood in Ireland to discover her destiny on the streets of Saigon. A true story.

Director: Stephen Bradley | Stars: Deirdre O'Kane, Sarah Greene, Gloria Cramer Curtis, Brendan Coyle

Votes: 1,315 | Gross: $0.35M

9. Max (I) (2015)

PG | 111 min | Adventure, Drama, Family

47 Metascore

A Malinois dog that helped American Marines in Afghanistan returns to the United States and is adopted by his handler's family after suffering a traumatic experience.

Director: Boaz Yakin | Stars: Thomas Haden Church, Josh Wiggins, Luke Kleintank, Lauren Graham

Votes: 23,497 | Gross: $42.65M

10. Pan (2015)

PG | 111 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy

36 Metascore

Twelve-year-old orphan Peter is spirited away to the magical world of Neverland, where he finds both fun and danger, and ultimately discovers his destiny -- to become the hero who will be for ever known as Peter Pan.

Director: Joe Wright | Stars: Levi Miller, Hugh Jackman, Garrett Hedlund, Rooney Mara

Votes: 54,234 | Gross: $35.09M



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