Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Top 10 Musicals for Family Movie Night

I love musicals.

Love, love, love, love musicals.

Ok. I think you've got the point. I've always had a love of musicals.

They're fun to watch. They inspire you to sing and dance. And, they're often family friendly, which makes them a perfect choice for family movie night.

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These are my top 10 picks for musicals to share with your kids. You'll find some great classics and a few newer ones. The kids will love them and they're also enjoyable for adults. And while there are so many fantastic animated musicals, I chose to focus on live-action musicals for this list.

I checked out Common Sense Media for all of these choices and found that most were rated for ages 6 and up meaning they are appropriate for and enjoyable for those ages. A couple of choices had a higher age rating and I'll notate those in the list.

1. Sound of Music (rated G) - Not only is this my favorite musical, it's also my favorite movie. The length (almost 3 hours) can be a be much for some kids to sit through, but I've found that there are enough fantastic music scenes to keep everyone's interest.

2. Mary Poppins (rated G) - Out of everything on the list, this is the one that will appeal to the youngest of kids. (My girls both watched and enjoyed it at around 4 years old.) Warning: the songs are addicting. You'll be singing them for days.

3. Enchanted (rated PG) - What happens when a fairy-tale princess lands in the middle of modern-day Manhattan? You get this delightfully fun Disney musical. I love it and it's great for the family.

4. Annie - Annie has been remade a few times and I really couldn't decide between the original version and the newest version. My favorite is the 1984 version (rated PG) because that is the one I watched over and over as a child. I'm not sure any version can every beat this one because no one will ever be able to play the role of Miss Hannigan as well as Carol Burnett. BUT... my daughters would vote for the 2014 version (rated PG) starring Jamie Foxx. They love the modern-day twist and have watched it about as many times as I watched the original version. (Common Sense Media ranks the 2014 version as ages 7 and above. The 1984 version is ranked for ages 6 and above.)

5. The Music Man (rated G) - This is another long movie, clocking in at about 2-1/2 hours, but it moves so quickly you won't notice. It's fun and upbeat. Don't even bother with any of the remakes of this one - the original is by-far the best.

6. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (rated G) - This one, starring Dick Van Dyke, follows an inventor and his kids as they fly away (in a flying car!) to a magical fantasy land. It has fewer songs than any of the other choices, but they are still quite delightful.

7. My Fair Lady (rated G) - This well-loved musical is perfect for families. Despite it's rating of 6 and up, I've found that it's better suited for older kids both for it's length (just under 3 hours) and the fact that there are no kids in the movie.

8. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (rated G) - This one is fun, energetic, and the barn dance scene is one of the best dance scenes ever.

9. Bedknobs and Broomsticks (rated G) - In this movie, three kids are sent to a small English village for safety during World War II and end up in the care of an apprentice witch. This story is fun and magical. And, despite being set during World War II, this is a Disney movie so there are no scary war references. Common Sense Media rated Bedknobs and Broomsticks for ages 7 and up.

10. Newsies (rated PG) - This one is grittier and more political than any of the other movies listed, but it's still a wonderful family-friendly film. It was inspired by a real-life strike 1899 New York City when the newsboys (all teens and children) took on publishing giant Pulitzer - and won.  Common Sense Media rated it for ages 9 and up and I would agree that it's definitely more enjoyable for the older kids.

Did I miss any of your favorites?

Grab some popcorn and a comfy seat on the couch for a fun movie night with one of these family friendly musicals.

Here are the 10 ten musicals for a fun family movie night.


  1. No need to publish this comment - just wanted to let you know that there's a small typo in your "Annie" write up: The*Y* love the modern-day twist and have watched it about as many times as I watched the original version.

    I enjoyed the list, though, too! :-)

  2. I would add The One and Only Genuine Original Family Band, it is a Disney movie, and a fun fact is that Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russel met while filming this movie.

  3. I love that movie - it's so much fun!


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