Is 2 years old too young to see a 2-hour movie in the theater/cinema?

April - posted on 06/19/2011 ( 30 moms have responded )

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Have your kids seen a movie in the theater? How old were they when they saw their first movie? Did they sit through the entire movie and appear to enjoy the movie?



My son is 2 1/2 and I know it would not be worth my money to take him to the movies. He barely watches TV when we put it on. He will watch a few minutes and then he is off playing with a toy. A good friend of mine just took her 2 year old daughter to her first movie (Mr. Popper's Penguins). The little girl paid attention mostly to only the animated parts. It got me thinking that a short animated film is okay for a two year old, but not a non-animated 2 hour movie. What do you all think?

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[deleted account]

My girls 6 and 5 just started sitting through movies. And with the cost being so high, we rarely go. During the summer alot of theatres offer free movies in the mornings. I would check around so your not wasting money. Or go there 15 mins after start time so u miss most of the previews.

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Kirsten - posted on 09/18/2012

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Hi April.

Would love to hear how Nemo went for your 3 year old...we are going to try it for our almost 4 year old this weekend. I definitely agree that going in a few minutes late is the way to go!

Kirsten - posted on 09/18/2012

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My sons first movie was with his class and he was 3 1/2...the teacher said he did great. We took him to see Paranorman on Sunday (he will be 4 in a few weeks) and he was glued to the screen! I was a little worried about this movie because it looked a little scary, but afterwards I asked him if he liked the movie and he said he loved it. I asked him if he thought it was scary and he said "no, it was just fun". Last week was a Groupon deal for a movie place that serves lunch or dinner during the movie and today I got another Groupon deal for a different place that does the same thing, so we are going to go see Finding Nemo in 3D. I have no idea how it will go, so fingers crossed! Normally we wouldn't do a movie two weeks in a row, but he loves Finding Nemo and my husband is only off two weekends a month, so if we don't go now, we will need to wait until next month and then I am afraid it might not be playing at this theater anymore. Anyway, I don't think there is a set age. It all depends on the child and his patience level, I think.

Ashlee - posted on 09/15/2012

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I think there are three major factors to keep in mind. The kid, the movie and the parent. My son has been to the movie three times now. He just turned three and does great. The first time we got there early so by the time the movie started he was bored with the whole thing. Oops my mistake!! Also, my sweet husband went. He is a wonderful daddy but can sometimes get a little high strung when it comes to our son in public places ( he forgots he's only 3). However, the second time we went, we g there a little late, had our popcorn and my mom came. It was a blast!! He did fabulous. I really think #1 my mom and I were a lo more calm which in turn made him more calm and #2 the going in late thing is the way to go!! He had no idea he missed a couple of minutes:) we are going to attempt 3d today. (cause its nemo!! And the non 3d showing is right in the middle of nap!) hope this helps.

Amy - posted on 06/20/2011

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I would wait till they are reduced price in the summer or there are outside showings of movies and see how they do. Movies are too pricey to buy tickets and then not see the whole show, here they are around $9, or try to go before 5pm or something. Go with a group of other moms and kids so if you leave you can go together adn do something fun. Haven't taken my almost 3 year old but she doesn't watch much tv accept in the car on drives longer than 30 mins. Let us know how it goes if you take your son.

[deleted account]

We tried taking my son to the movies when he was 2, and well it was not successful. So then I waited until he was 4 1/2 and that was the perfect age for him!

Stifler's - posted on 06/20/2011

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Bahaha I let Logan roam free outside a majority of the day. He couldn't care less about tv or movies.

April - posted on 06/20/2011

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Toni, that's how Zach is! Actually, I think he would NEVER watch TV if I didn't turn it on in the mornings. The first thing he asks when he wakes up is to go outside. He would be outside all day if we'd let him!!

[deleted account]

I know Ethan wouldn't sit through a movie in a cinema yet, he's 20 months old. When he can sit through one at home I'll take him - I have a feeling it'll be a few years though because he only watches tv in 15 minute spurts, even when his grandma is trying to make him watch it for longer - he wants to play not sit still



I think it depends on the child though as my nephews were watching movies at Ethan's age.

Teresa - posted on 06/20/2011

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I think my son was 2.5 and it was Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. He did really well. Of course it was animated and considering I thought the movie wasn't that good he did great. Now when he was 3.5 he really did well with Toy Story 3.

Becky - posted on 06/19/2011

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Our boys haven't been to a movie in the theater yet. They are 3 and 1 1/2. We'll be taking them to Cars 2 in a couple of weeks - not opening weekend, that's just insane -and I'm pretty sure they'll do fine, since they are both major Cars fans. Zach may have difficulty sitting the whole time, but since it's a kids movie, I'm not worried about if he makes a bit of noise. I'm sure the theater won't be quiet!

[deleted account]

I've been considering bringing Eliza this summer. A local theater has a summer program. Every Wednesday morning they show an old kids' movie (usually animated). It costs $4/person and that includes popcorn and drink. I think that it may be a fun experience for her. BUT she sits through movies at home, so I think she can handle it. I have to be careful not the leave the tv on, because she'll become engrossed. That's why I set tv limits for her. =)

Anna - posted on 06/19/2011

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We took my son when he was 2 1/2. He's only been a couple times but he enjoyed it. We like to go late. I think my son would probably sit through the whole thing, but I think a full length movie is too much at his age and he doesn't really notice that he missed the first half anyway.

Minnie - posted on 06/19/2011

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We brought Adelaide to Terminator 4 when she was 7 months old and GI Joe and Transformers 2 when she was 14 months old. But I don't know if they count, because we went at bed time and she nursed through the whole movie. People were SO stunned we had brought a baby and they didn't know, lol.



We haven't been since though. She's past that age where I can just nurse her to oblivion and definitely isn't into sitting while watching anything. She's not super big into TV or movies. My five year old wouldn't even sit through a movie.

Stifler's - posted on 06/19/2011

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Depends on the child. My 17 month old has an attention span of about 1 minute. Sitting still... what's that?

April - posted on 06/19/2011

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i guess we should at that not only does it depend on the kid and the movie but it also depends on whether the kid has siblings! if you're the second or third child in the family, chances are you are going to do things earlier than your older siblings did!

LadyJane - posted on 06/19/2011

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Took my son when he was 8 months to see Polar Express. It was the first time he actually sat still and watched a movie. He did amazingly well.

I should also mention that we went with my then 8yr old daughter and my mom and brother. We had a great time and my son loved it.

Jodi - posted on 06/19/2011

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Amber, I was at the movies recently too (I think we were watching Rio), and there was a kid who was maybe 5 disrupting the entire theatre. It was super annoying. I think the mother had 3 kids there, and only the 5 year old was misbehaving, and she was obviously struggling with what to do, because she couldn't very well punish the other kids for the one misbehaving by taking them all home, but at the same time, she was punishing EVERYONE by keeping him in the theatre. Not sure how I would handle that one.

Amber - posted on 06/19/2011

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We just came back from the movies :) We saw Mr. Popper's Penguins. It really wasn't a good kids at the theater movie, unless the kids are maybe 7ish(?). It had a lot of talking scenes between adults that kids wouldn't understand.

My son was between 2-1//2 and 3 the first time he went to the movies. It was Ice Age 2 or 3 (I forget which one). He loved the first one and sat at home and watched it with me. So, when grandma and grandpa asked if he could go with them and his older cousin, I said yes. He did better than his 5 year old cousin did.
He's been to the movies at least a dozen times now, and he's always well behaved and pays attention.

It really depends on the kid. Sometimes they have a great attention span early, but other times they just don't.

I will say that it drives me crazy when infants are in movie theaters screaming. Twice now, I've been at movies late at night and had infants screaming through it while their mom holds them. Very enjoyable...

Katherine - posted on 06/19/2011

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Well at home Alyce can sit through an hour and a half movie. I think she'd be overstimulated at a theater though. She is 27mo.

Rosie - posted on 06/19/2011

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it depends on the child and the movie i guess. around here there is a theater that does free kid movie day. my mother takes them every time and has since my youngest was 2. it's filled with kids so i felt it would be different than just taking him to a movie adults might be trying to enjoy.
he sat through perfectly. he was excited to be there, eat popcorn and m$m's and thought it was cool when the lights went out and the screen turned on. we took a few potty breaks, but other than that he was good.

Kylie - posted on 06/19/2011

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Hey Loureen, Lil's and a friend from school went to see cars 2 yesterday (special screening). The mum who took them said the girls were bored and didn't understand the James bond connections. They were asking to leave so they could go play. But hopefully he loves it. :p

My daughter was about 3 when she saw happy feet at the cinemas. She couldn't sit through the whole thing and we left early which i was bummed about because i love that movie.

Charlie - posted on 06/19/2011

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I think that depends on the child , I am taking my 2 and a half year old to see Cars 2 this week ...first time at the movies ...he can sit through cars at home easily if he doesnt like it we will leave but I have a feeling he is going to love it.

[deleted account]

Depends on the movie and the kid. The girls were 3 the first time we went to the theater w/ them (well, the second time... first was at 2 months) and they did great. My 3 year old son has never been, but I'm too cheap to go to the theater anymore.....

Jodi - posted on 06/19/2011

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Taylah was about 2 1/2 when we took her to see Shrek the Third (I had to look up the release dates to remember how old she was). She was pretty good, but quite honestly, not 2 hours.....that movie is only 93 minutes, and about the last 20 minutes she was very restless and lost interest in the movie. Anyway, I didn't try again until she was over 3, and that worked.

[deleted account]

I wouldn't dare take her to something that wasn't animated. She just doesn't have any interest. She loves cartoons though.

[deleted account]

32 months and it was a 3D cartoon kids movie....the one with the birds. I can't think of the name. Gah!

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