Update October 2015

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Beware the depressing polar bear cartoon

If Mo doesn't get nightmares from our latest "children's video" than perhaps I will.

Our reward for braving story time at the library is getting to check out two movies for the week. This morning I grabbed a beautifully illustrated show called, "The Boy Who Wanted to be a Bear." Sounds lovely, doesn't it?

Typical of our routine, the boys got home and excitedly turned on their show - leaving me a few uninterrupted minutes to make lunch. Everything seemed fine, until Mo shouted to me, "Mom, come here! It's scary!"

I'm thinking, "Sure kid, how scary can the polar bear cartoon really be? You just want my attention." But I told him I'd be there in a minute.

Well, a few seconds later, he says, "No Mom! Now!" And this time, I could tell there was real fear in his voice. I came quickly.

Sitting beside him on the couch, we watched a harrowing cartoon scene where a polar bear watches a young mother leave her home to fetch some water. He then sneaks in the house and snatches her baby. The mother catches him in the act, freaks out and tries to attack him. The bear knocks her out cold and runs off with the baby. She wakes up and runs after him, though he's got a head start and runs much faster. Eventually she realizes she'll never catch him. She yells at him repeatedly to give back her baby and finally collapses, howling like - well, like a mother who's had her infant stolen by a bear.

OK, this is a G-rated movie. The back of the movie says it's won four children's film awards. This movie was mixed in with Elmo and Dora and Bob the Builder.

Later I watched the opening scenes of the movie, which the boys had seen without me. It involved two polar bears getting chased by wolves and the mama bear falling off a cliff. She survives but delivers a stillborn baby bear - and they even show his listless little body and the mama bear burying him. It's done well - watching these polar bear parents mourn their loss is just heartbreaking. And also way too heavy for little kids (or their mamas).

Or tell me, am I just being overly sensitive here?

Either way, I sure learned a lesson about monitoring what my kids are watching!

3 comments:

  1. We always talk about how G movies really aren't G anymore and that some of the things they show leave me with my chin dropping to my knees. I hate when they have animal characters dying too!

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  2. No; I don't think you're being overly sensitive at all!
    Even Snow White isn't appropriate for some kids (the scene with her terrified in the woods, and the whole cutting the heart out thing)

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  3. Yikes, I would definitely not be happy to find my kids watching something like that. I'm not sure who makes these things and rates them as G and puts them in the kids' section, but I'm guessing that they just don't have any children of their own.

    p.s. following you from MBC Under 100!
    http://thanksmailcarrier.blogspot.com

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