American Girl: Isabelle Dances Into the Spotlight Movie Review #ad

5:30:00 AM

Hi folks! Here at Architecture of a Mom, I don't do many reviews. I do sponsored posts occasionally, mostly for food that I love or craft and DIY supplies that I love or intrigue me. However, I am also a mom of 3 girls, and they all LOVE American Girl. After all, we've hosted a Bitty Baby party, and each of my girls either have a Bitty Baby or an American Girl Doll. And so, when the chance arose to review the new American Girl movie, Isabelle Dances Intothe Spotlight, you know that I had to check it out. Because if I didn't, I'd have a full scale rebellion on my hands. So full disclaimer: I received a movie package from American Girl, but no other compensation for my review. All opinions are my own, or that of the girls who watched the movie.

This year's American Girl of the Year Isabelle has been a big hit in our house. She is a dancer, and we really love ballet here.  So everyone was very excited to have a movie premiere in our own home. We had a full scale girls night here at my house, with all attendees having their dolls ready to watch the movie. We had Marie-Grace, Felicity, Carrissa, and two Bitty Babies named Violet and Rosie. We popped popcorn and made cookies, and then began to watch the movie.  And, yes, we means I watched it, too. Yes, there were places where the script faltered or was a little artificial. But on the whole, it was a movie that was enjoyable and had great themes for girls, especially tween girls.

Isabelle Dances in the Spotlight is about Isabelle Palmer, who attends a special performing arts school. She feels overshadowed by her older, talented sister, Jade, and struggles to excel.

The movie is around 100 minutes long. Although we started with 5 girls that range in age from 3-10, and I don't feel that there was anything inappropriate for any of the girls, my 3 year olds did not understand a good portion of the themes and lost interest about half-way through. However, the other girls, ages 6, (almost) 9, and 10, enjoyed the film and found it thought provoking.

I'm not going to give any spoilers. However, I do want to share some themes from the movie:

-Realizing that you are responsible for excelling. A favorite concept of mine was "You are only in someone's shadow if you put yourself there. Focus on being the best you can be." The theme is expanded by the notion that hard work as well as passion and joy is key to that excellence. With a child that struggles with being distracted by others, I loved seeing this theme.

-Dealing with bullies, and realizing that they are people, too, that are dealing with far more than we know. Even though troubles do not excuse their behavior, this knowledge can help us rise above the bullying.

-Understanding that every person has their own struggles, no matter how perfect their lives seem. Be kind to them, and willing to listen. Don't just dump your problems on them.

I was able to apply a couple of the themes to my daughter's life in the days that followed our watching the movie together. All the big girls were pretty well riveted to the screen and got annoyed when the little ones interrupted the movie. The girls that watched the movie all said that they would watch the movie again and would invite their friends to watch it, as well.

We had so much fun that we had to make some fun ballet crafts, too. Stay tuned for later this week--we're going to have fun!! Marie Grace can't wait to show you her her new ballet gear!

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