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October 21, 2011
PG for thematic
material, some rough bullying and peril, language and brief juvenile humor
Bobby Coleman, Bobb’e J. Thompson, Christian Martyn, Josh Flitter, Ray Liotta,
Overall PTC Traffic Light Rating:
Death shown and discussed at length, drowning, schoolyard
“Piss off,” “poop,” “take a leak”
Bullying, brief bodily function humor
Billy Kirkfield has cancer; but before he dies, he wants to do something
important, something that will cause him to be remembered. With his friends,
Jamaican immigrant Howard and “wimpy” Lucas, Billy hits on a plan: enlist the
entire elementary school to set a world record for building snowmen. But life is
rarely straightforward; and Billy’s goes through many twists, including failed
attempts at record-setting, misunderstandings with his father, and a
confrontation with the school bully Jason -- before he learns the lesson that
what is truly important is not what one does, but how one does it.
There is little problematic content in Snowmen. There are some extensive
discussions about Billy’s impending death, a scene in which Billy and his
friends find a frozen corpse in a snowbank (the body, covered in ice, is briefly
seen), and an extended sequence in which a little boy is trapped under lake ice
and drowns. These scenes are not graphic, but may disturb or provoke discussions
with sensitive or younger children. Language is limited to the phrases listed
above, each uttered once; and in the movie’s opening minutes, Howard drips nasal
mucus on Billy at their first meeting. Schoolyard bullying plays a major part in
the film’s plot, and the boys engage in some punching, shoving, and throwing
snowballs, with one boy getting a bloody nose; but this aspect is handled
realistically without being overdone.
contains a multitude of good messages, for children and for adults. Billy’s
obsession with doing something “important” is tempered when he learns about the
life of the man whose body he found; the man was a simple shopkeeper, but Billy
learns that his life touched that of many other people, and he learns that
“being a good person is a purpose all by itself.” The importance of telling the
truth, of working hard to achieve excellence, and of befriending and being kind
even to those who do not return the favor all play important parts in the film.
realistic and deeply moving film filled with surprising plot twists and many
strong and positive messages, Snowmen is a picture of outstanding quality
for the entire family. The Parents Television Council is proud to award
Snowmen with the PTC Seal of ApprovalTM. The PTC does not
recommend this movie DVD for viewers under age five.
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