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Best Family Movies to Rent in 2009

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Authored by Phil Dotree in Movies and Television
Published on 10-06-2009

Fall is firmly here, and as the weather gets colder it’s a great time to sit down with the family and a few rented movies. Not all Hollywood films are suited for families, but luckily there’s a good crop of DVDs that are great for all age groups (and fairly well done, too). Here’s a look at some of the best family DVD rentals from 2009 for the next time your family hits up Netflix or runs to the movie rental store.

1. Monsters Vs. Aliens – This DreamWorks 3D animated film stars Reese Witherspoon as a woman who finds herself growing to gigantic heights after being hit by a meteor. She soon finds herself in the company of other “monsters,” who must defend the Earth from an alien invasion. This family film has serious comedy chops thanks to voice acting from Seth Rogen and Will Arnett, and while it’s not quite on par with classics like The Incredibles, it’s certainly worth a rental.

2. Night At The Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian – The Ben Stiller vehicle’s sequel has a lot of fun sight gags, and while the comedy isn’t quite high brow, it’s certainly interesting and wondrous enough for adults as well as children. The family should particularly enjoy the wonderful casting of Hank Azaria as the villain in the second chapter of this franchise. Rent this movie if your family saw the original.

3. Hannah Montana – The Movie – As far as family films go, this one’s pretty massive, and if your family has a few younger kids chances are they’ve already dragged you to the movie theaters for the Disney star’s big-screen debut. Nevertheless, the Hanna Montana movie stands up as a fairly decent family film – not overly long and filled with the types of cliches and good-hearted storylines that children love. A great family film to rent for families with young children.

4. The Wizard of Oz – OK, this movie didn’t come out in 2009, but the most definitive and brilliant DVD release of the Judy Garland classic recently became available on Blu-ray, and it’d be a shame if there was a kid in America who wasn’t familiar with this outstanding musical. A great, fun rental for the whole family for different reasons; kids will love the surrealism, and adults will remember the first time they heard the iconic songs.

5. Wall-E – Critics were quick to sing the praises of the family film Wall-E, and rightly so – it’s a feelgood, cute, masterfully animated flick, and even smaller children will sit through the long wordless sequence that comes at the beginning of the movie. The animation is brilliant and breathtaking enough for even the attention span deprived (not to mention jaded adults). An absolute must rent family film that really doesn’t have any significant problems – it’s one of the highest rated animated films in recent years for a very good reason.

Of course, if you know of a better family movie to rent than the ones on this list, post your suggestions in the comments. Remember to keep your suggestions family oriented.

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