Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that The Boxcar Children is a very gentle, uplifting story of four orphaned children who take responsibility for their lives and create a home in which they survive and flourish. The movie taps into the common childhood fantasy of independence and an instinctive ability to provide for oneself and other kids (often brothers and sisters). Mild suspense accompanies Henry, Jessie, Violet, and Benny as they stay hidden from an adult world they believe to be threatening (they run from adults who want to send the youngest boy to an orphanage and are fearful of an estranged grandfather whom they perceive as mean and unloving). Based on the Boxcar Children series, the first book of which was written in 1924 by first-grade teacher Gertrude Chandler Warner, it's an old-fashioned story that promotes clear values of loyalty, resourcefulness, and love. The hopeful resolution will satisfy and inspire. More than a hundred books followed the iconic original, most devoted to the Boxcar kids as mystery solvers.
Mild, gentle suspense: An adult couple chases the kids through the woods; the children slide down a slippery hillside; young Benny is startled by an owl. The kids occasionally worry, especially when Violet becomes ill.
Strong messages about families' dependence on one another, optimism, setting clear goals and striving to achieve them, and the power of love and selflessness. Promotes the value of small treasures and finding joy in what one has rather than wants.
Drugs / Tobacco /