Intense but satisfying finale is an epic gift to MCU fans.
“Avengers: Endgame” is the final film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s current generation of movies, bringing together story lines and characters from 21 previous movies, starting with 2008’s “Iron Man.” Families with younger kids should know that there’s definitely as much intense violence (decapitation, explosions, stabbings, impalement, crushing, shooting, etc.), and even more pain, trauma and grief here than there was in “Avengers: Infinity War.” (Spoiler alert!) A couple of beloved characters die, which will prove particularly upsetting. The language is similar to the previous movies (mostly uses of “s---,” “a--,” “d---” — even Captain America swears this time!), but there’s no romance beyond a few brief embraces and kisses between established couples. Thor drinks a lot to numb his pain. Those who haven’t seen any of the previous MCU installments should at least watch “Infinity War” and “Captain America: Civil War” to follow the plot, but those who are familiar with the movies and comics will be rewarded with plenty of inside jokes and references. With themes of courage, teamwork and perseverance, this epic Avengers finale is the ultimate gift to Marvel fans — they’ll laugh, cry and cheer as their favorite superheroes team up to save the universe one more time. (182 minutes)
Funny hidden-camera show lets celebrities prank students.
“The Substitute” is a show that lets celebrities like Jace Norman pose as incompetent, offbeat substitute teachers to prank classrooms full of students. Viewers watch as special effects experts transform the stars using prosthetics, makeup and wigs, leaving little hint of their true identities. As the subs stumble their way through teaching lessons, physical accidents and other mishaps lead to reactions of both laughter and uncertainty from the students — all of which is intended for the audience’s enjoyment. Even so, this show helps illustrate the difference between laughing at someone’s expense and laughing with them, as well as the importance of treating newcomers with kindness. (30-minute episodes)
Available on Nickelodeon and streaming via nick.com.
Fanciful tale about growing up has mild swearing.
“Unicorn Store” is a whimsical comedy with engaging themes about resistance to growing up, belief in magic and the power of love. There’s a pervasive sense of innocence about the movie, but viewers can still expect some mild swearing, including “s---,” “d---” and “hell.” “Psychologically attuned” adults and mean-girl co-workers are amiably parodied. A sleazy office boss makes a few unsubtle passes at the main character; it’s clear that he’s a jerk. Characters drink wine in a social setting, with the young lead gulping hers down. Brie Larson, who directs and stars, has made a movie that will appeal to teens, particularly girls who love the pastel softness of life’s magical creatures and don’t want to give up the dream too easily. (91 minutes)
Available via Netflix streaming.
Fandom-inspired musical comedy has innuendo, drinking.
“I Ship It” is a musical comedy show that started out as a streaming series about fandom (the culture of a being a superfan of a particular piece of media) and relationships (or “ships”) within it. There’s some sexual innuendo and strong language (like “d---”), too. Characters drink beer and down shots on occasion. But teens who are into “shipping” or fandoms might get a kick out of this quirky series. (21-minute episodes)
Available via CW Seed streaming.
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