Rating: PG-13 for brief strong language and smoking.
What it’s about: A young writer finds fame and fortune by publishing another’s novel as his own.
The kid attractor factor: Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana and Olivia Wilde are among its stars.
Good lessons/ bad lessons: “Start taking responsibility for your life." And when you make a mistake, make it right.
Language: A smattering of profanity.
Sex: Sexual situations.
Drugs: Alcohol and cigarettes.
Parents’ advisory: Any time your kids want to see a movie about reading and writing, that’s a good thing. OK for 12 and older.
Rating: PG for scary action and images, thematic elements, some rude humor and language.
What it’s about: A boy who hears and sees dead people is a town’s only hope when witch trial victims return to life to terrorize the place.
The kid attractor factor: Stop motion animation, a “Coraline"/ “Corpse Bride" scary sensibility.
Parents’ advisory: Too scary for the very young, but an edgy animated treat to anybody 8 and older.
Rating: PG-13 for some violence, intense action sequences and language.
What it’s about: A gonzo bicycle messenger is chased by a crooked cop through the crowded streets of Manhattan.
The kid attractor factor: Attractive, muscular young people tearing through traffic in death-defying bike sprints.
Good lessons/ bad lessons: “Stay awake, stay alive." And don’t try this bike stuff at home.
Violence: Beatings, a shooting, and lots of bike accidents.
Language: A tiny bit of mild swearing, here and there.
Sex: Make-out sessions.
Parents’ advisory: As kid-friendly as thrillers get, this one is suitable for ages 11 and older.