by S.E Hinton

5 Stars

Book Review For Teens: The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Set in the ’60s, in the divided state of Oklahoma, this novel tells the story of two rival gangs separated by poverty and social status. The Greasers, known as the working class, are seen as very low in the eyes of the Socs, a high-class gang, the complete opposite of the Greasers. The Outsiders is told from the perspective of 14-year-old Greaser, Ponyboy Curtis. He details two of the most intense weeks of his short life, struggling in a community where he is viewed as an outsider with difficult decisions of right and wrong.

His life certainly hasn’t been an easy one. Having his parents taken away from him due to a recent car accident has taken a toll on him. Ponyboy and his 16-year-old brother Sodapop are allowed to live with their eldest brother 20-year-old Darry, as long as they stay out of trouble.

While out with his friends, Ponyboy attends a drive-thru movie where he meets a Soc girl named Sherri, the first of the Socs he had ever gotten along with. As the gang walks home with Sherri, they are stopped and threatened by her boyfriend, a Soc by the name of Bob. Ponyboy gets home at 2 am, angering his guardian Darry, prompting him to slap Ponyboy. Due to this, Ponyboy runs out of the door, meeting his friend Johnny in a park expressing his anger.

Bob, Sherri’s boyfriend, suddenly reappears along with his crew. Ponyboy and Johnny are outnumbered, a gruesome fight breaks out, ending up with Ponyboy being held underwater to drown by Bob. Johnny freaks out and kills him. After the fight ends, they realize they can’t go back, they now have blood on their hands.

This novel is extremely interesting, constantly keeping the reader engaged and interested. Definitely a 5-star book.

Vlada E.

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by Nick Bruno and Troy Quane

5 Stars

Spies in Disguise, directed by Nick Bruno and Troy Quane, is a movie full of comedy and action that every family member can enjoy together. It is a movie that I enjoyed and would recommend others to watch. It has many exciting and “weird” moments that cause suspense and bring laughter.  

Spies in Disguise - Wikipedia

The movie is about a super-spy named Lance Sterling, voiced by Will Smith, and a scientist named Walter Beckett, voiced by Tom Holland. This duo is complete opposites who have to work together. Lance Sterling is a smooth, independent spy whose goal is to protect the world from evil. Walter Beckett is a smart, inventive scientist who lacks social skills. These two characters have to work together because Lance turns into a pigeon when accidentally drinking one of Walter’s inventions. The question throughout the movie is, will Lance Sterling return to human form? Will he be able to defeat evil as a pigeon? Lance was always used to working alone but, as a pigeon, he had to depend on someone else. He had to learn to work with Walter.  

The movie focuses on the idea that it is okay to be weird or different, and that people can work as a team even if they are different from each other. In the part of the movie where Lance Sterling says, “Let’s get weird”, this is associated with Walter always being considered the “weird kid” in school. It showed that all the work Walter did on his inventions was not just something weird but actually ended up helping Lance fight evil. When they worked together, they both became better versions of themselves. The movie also has a lot of action. There is a sitting-on-the-edge-of-your-seat moment where a viewer would fear what was going to happen next. There are a lot of close-calls, and some events happen that you would not expect to happen in the movie. The movie showed Walter’s inventions in creative ways, and some of the things that happened to him and Lance throughout the plot were interesting and creative. The characters in the movie are funny, and the choices that they make cause them to seem silly and careless. The movie will grab the attention of everyone and give everyone a chance to stay on their toes and laugh. Overall, I would recommend this movie for all ages, and it is a good movie for a whole family to watch together. I would rate this movie 5 stars. It is funny, exciting, and would be enjoyable for everyone in the family to see. 

Liza P.

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by Lulu Wang

5 Stars

THE FAREWELL (Le mariage d'adieu) (Bilingual): Amazon.ca: Awkwafina, Tzi  Ma, VVS FILMS, Lulu Wang: DVD

The film, The Farewell follows a Chinese-American family as they discover that their beloved grandmother’s life is coming to an end. Billi is an aspiring writer who is very close to her Grandmother, Nai Nai. Billi discovers from her parents that her grandmother has been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer and may only live for another couple months. Billi and her family decide not to inform Nai Nai about her diagnosis to prevent her from living her remaining days in fear. Instead of breaking the saddening news, the family chooses to plan an extravagant wedding as an excuse to reunite the entire family one last time. Doing so, the family must control and do everything they can to cope with their emotions to protect their grandmother. 

I personally really enjoyed this film as it was deeply moving and extremely emotional. The storyline was very creative and intriguing, definitely not like anything I have seen before. The film showcases spectacular acting from the entire cast, especially Awkafina, who plays the main character, Billi. The music throughout the film was quite subtle, which was paired perfectly with all of the beautiful shots. There are references made to Asian culture; however, anyone will be able to relate to the movie with the themes about family and love. Even though this movie does not include crazy and dramatic scenes, the film resonates with the viewers and leaves you with deep emotions that will definitely linger on. I would highly recommend The Farewell to anyone who is willing to watch it.

Emily K.

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by Tom McGrath

4.5 Stars

The Boss Baby - Wikipedia

Imaginative Tim Templeton is a happy seven-year-old boy who has been receiving all the love and attention from his loving parents, Ted and Janice, for years. Tim is surprised one day when an infant wearing a black business suit and tie, carrying a briefcase arrives at his home in a taxi. Tim’s parents inform Tim that the infant is his new baby brother. With the new baby around, Tim realizes that he is no longer the center of attention anymore and is envious. One day, Tim discovers that the baby can talk and refers to himself as “The Boss”. The Boss Baby reveals that he has been sent out as a spy on a top-secret mission to destroy and end an organization working to launch forever puppies that will replace babies, Puppy Co. Though Tim is not too fond of the Boss Baby, he agrees to help him on his mission, solely to get rid of him faster. The two boys team up to create an epic battle between puppies and babies. 

I personally enjoyed this film as it was action-packed and included hilarious bits of comedy. The storyline was quite interesting and was entertaining to watch. The movie reminded me of my own childhood with the original take on sibling rivalries and bonding. I thought the animations were very colourful and vibrant, which were very pleasing to look at. In conclusion, Boss Baby is a cute and charming film that is great for the whole family to enjoy. 

Emily K.

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