Movies that may appeal to families in 2013

By Jeff Peterson

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, Jan. 10 2013 8:25 p.m. MST

“Turbo” — Ryan Reynolds, who is also voicing a character in “The Croods,” stars as a racing snail named Theo — aka Turbo — in the second feature from DreamWorks Animation. With a TV series already in the works, DreamWorks must be feeling pretty confident.

“Disney’s Planes” — Originally intended as a straight-to-DVD movie, this “Cars” spinoff follows — you guessed it — an airplane as he competes in a race around the world. It probably won’t convert any “Cars” naysayers, but “Planes” could end up being a lot of fun.

“Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters” — Logan Lerman returns in this sequel to 2010’s “Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief.” This time, Rick Riordan’s teenage hero and his friends must find the Golden Fleece from Greek mythology.

“The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones” — Another young adult series jostling for teenagers’ box-office dollars this year, “City of Bones” is based on the first of Cassandra Clare’s novels about half-angel warriors called Shadowhunters.

“The Little Mermaid 3D” — Even though “Beauty and the Beast 3D” didn’t quite light up the box office, audiences will have another chance to catch a Disney classic in three dimensions with this year’s re-release of the movie that kick-started the so-called “Disney Renaissance.”

“Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2” — Departing slightly from Judi Barrett’s books, “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2” picks up right where the first film left off. Bill Hader and the rest of the cast return along with some new voices, including Terry Crews and SNL vet Will Forte.

“Mr. Peabody and Sherman” — Starring Ty Burrell of "Modern Family" as Mr. Peabody, the time-traveling dog/adoptive father of a human boy named Sherman, this is the third and final DreamWorks Animation release of the year. According to some early reports from the sci-fi and technology website io9, at least, this one could actually restore interest in the decades-old characters.

“Frozen” — For its 53rd animated feature, Disney returns to the fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen in this musical adaptation of “The Snow Queen” directed by Chris Buck (“Tarzan”) and starring Kristen Bell.

“The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” — After a remarkably warm fan and critic response to the first film, Jennifer Lawrence and Co. return to the dystopian sci-fi world of Suzanne Collins’ “Hunger Games” novels for this highly anticipated sequel.

“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” — Part 2 of Peter Jackson’s new Middle-earth trilogy. Given the title, fans of the J.R.R. Tolkien books can expect to finally see Benedict Cumberbatch (the BBC’s “Sherlock”) in all his scene-chewing glory as the dragon Smaug, and that alone could be worth the price of admission.

A native of Utah Valley and a devoted cinephile, Jeff is currently studying humanities and history at Brigham Young University.

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