At what age do you take your kids to the movie theater?

Cassandra - posted on 04/04/2011 ( 108 moms have responded )

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I want to take my son to the movies this summer when Cars 2 comes out in theaters. What age do you think they can handle it and not be a huge distraction to others?

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Sherrie - posted on 04/10/2011

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I have taken mine a couple of times under 3 but we never made it to the end of the movie. Try finding out if they have mums and bubs movie times at your cinema, its for people with small kids, and they expect the kids to not sit still nor be perfect. It worked for me and others in there also have the same situation with their littlies.

Nicky - posted on 04/09/2011

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just took my little lad today he is 3 in july and he was great for the best part , near the end he got a bit giddy but he was better than i thought !

Amanda - posted on 04/08/2011

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Ive been taking my son since he was an infant he is almost two and LOVES the movies. Some theatres have cry rooms so you don't disturb other movie goers

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 04/08/2011

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Well, I know a mom who did matinees (early morning shows) and took her babies. Literally, car seats and all......... I would never do that. I refuse to go until they can behave themselves. I'm guessing around age 3-5 depending on their development. It's just a personal pet peve my boyfriend and I have about movies. However, usuallly the morning shows not alot of people show up to so who knows? Maybe it wouldnt be an issue at all

Katrina - posted on 04/08/2011

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My oldest went for the first time on her 5th birthday but she was never one that sat through anything at home, and we still haven't taken my 3yr old because she has a sound sensory problem so although I think that she could sit through the whole movie I don't think that she would enjoy it. It really depends on the child.

Shawna - posted on 04/08/2011

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How old is your son? Do you beleive he will be a distraction to others trying to enjoy the movie? As a Mom you should be zable to tell whether your son is ready or not. My son is 2 and we watch movies at our house on our tv and DVD.

Whitney - posted on 04/08/2011

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i have already taken my daughter of a year and a half to 2 movies but for her first one i went on a tues around 1 or 2 just in case so no one but me and her were there but she sat and watched the whole thing while eating her snacks. i also think it depends on the kid can you get him to actually sit and watch something at home that he enjoys. my daughter loves watching he baby can read videos and caillou

Brandy - posted on 04/08/2011

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My daughter will be 3 in a couple weeks and I just took her last weekend to see Hop. She was pretty good. She got a little antsy about a 1/2 hour in and I asked her if she had to pee and she said yes so we went and kind of took our time coming back and by the time we got back, she was ready to sit still again for the rest of the movie. Some theatres have enclosed areas with big windows in them for parents of children who have a hard time keeping still/quiet for such a length of time so you could call your local theatre and ask about that. I think you should give it a try either way. Worst case scenario, you leave the theathre a little bit before the movie is over.

Olivia - posted on 04/08/2011

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My oldest daughter was around 4 when I took her to the movies. My youngest (18 months) has been showing interest in the easter bunny movie but I know she does not have the attention span for that anytime soon. She only watches a few minutes of TV at a time.

Alisha - posted on 04/07/2011

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If it's a kids movie I think around age 2 is fine, there will be tons of other kids there especially if you go during the day who cares!

Amy - posted on 04/07/2011

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We took our 15 mth daughter to see Toy Story 3 last summer and she did fairly well. Only at the end did she get antsy n started talking but the movie was so loud that it didnt matter much. We wouldn't have taken her that young if it hadn't been for Buzz n Woody because she's crazy about them. I figured it would hold her attention long enough to get through it. Maybe just sit on the end of an aisle so you can leave quickly w/out bothering others and bring lots of snacks

Schollin - posted on 04/07/2011

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I think it depends on the child and the movie. I also want to take my son to see cars 2 as his first movie theater experience. He'll be 4. I've never been a fan of letting little kids watch tv, but thats my personal opinion. As long as the parent can keep the child, happy,behaved and polite I dont think it matters if they see one movie at 4 months or 4 years.
we irregularly have a family night with a movie our first movie that Alex actually watched was Cars, so my husband and I agreed to wait until a second one came out to take him to it.

Jess - posted on 04/07/2011

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My son will be 3 in September, and I will be taking him. I know that lots of theatres offer Stars and Strollers, where they leave the lights dimmed but not off, and the music is a little quieter (or it's supposed to be!). They will likely offer Cars 2 the week it comes out for Stars and Strollers. I know in our town it's Thursdays at 1pm, which is a nice time! I brought my son to movies starting at 3 months, almost every week for stars and strollers (they offer adult movies that are new releases so you can bring your young ones) and he is used to the theatre now. We watch all the new movies as they come on video too, and he often sits no issue through them even at home. I bring him in a stroller with a tray and some toys and make sure he has lots of snacks so that he isn't disruptive and sit on the edge of the aisle so his stroller isn't in the way. That way there is no risk that he can't see because someone tall is sitting in front of him! I take him somewhere to let him burn off energy before (usually it's a "date night" with him and we hit up McDonald's playplace before for dinner). We get him the kids snack tray and he sits amazingly!!! The stroller also straps him in, so he can't jump down or run around!!! He laughs loudly and talks occasionally...but it WILL BE A KIDS MOVIE....so I would try it! :) Try going at a time that it won't be so busy (not a weekend show if possible) if you're worried, but likely you'll be worried for nothing, especially if he loves Cars and wants to see it! My son is stoked!!! When I went back to work I stopped taking him to stars and strollers, so he had a break, so I was worried when we went again, but he sat no issue!!! The other thing I was planning on trying next time, is bringing his booster seat for him to sit in a regular seat...has the built in tray!!! But I would try it, we've only had to leave the Chipmunks Squeakquel, which might have been a little old for him at 15 months...because he started crying...but we've been to lots!!!

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Our local theather has a free movie day in the summer. They are often older movies but you can take a child at any age. It is meant as a way to beat the heat, hence why it is free.

Candice - posted on 04/07/2011

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Does going to a movie while in labor count? I've taken her everywhere since she was born and have had no trouble.

Monique - posted on 04/07/2011

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don't be afraid to take your son to the movies. remeber that you are going to see a kids movie and the therater is goin to be full of kids and moms that will understand if he kids a little loud or restless. i do sugest calling the theater first and find out if they have booster seats for small children. sometimes they don't wiegh enough to keep the seats down. we bring her booster from the car in.

MacKenzie - posted on 04/07/2011

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My son was 4 when I took him to the movies and he did very well. And we have some behavioral problems, and he did AMAZING! :)

Kylie - posted on 04/07/2011

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I've taken my kids from very young ages. When they are too little to know what they're there for, then they just like to watch the colours on the screen or fall asleep. When they're older they can enjoy it a little more. I always have a seat for them incase they want to chill out or fall asleep and sit close to an exit like other mums have mentioned. Oh and I always take a change of clothes after the first time I took my firstborn ( she was about 7 months old if I recall) and she did the runniest, messiest poo it went all through her clothes! lol always makes her laugh when I tell her what she did the first time she went to a cinema :)

Christianne - posted on 04/07/2011

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Where I live they have mums and bubs movie session were they dime the lights rather than turning the off so we can still see what we are doing with the they also don't have the sound as loud as normal. We started going when he was 6 months but stopped again around 12 months as he found the stairs very entertaining lol but I'm hoping to take him to see hope these school holidays now he is 19 months (fingers crossed). I think by 3 they would definitely have a bigger attention span and enjoy the movie experience a lot more :)

Katie - posted on 04/07/2011

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I have been taking my son to the drive in since he was months old. The good thing about that is when he got bored we were out of earshot of others:) The first time in the auditorium theater was at 2 yrs and it kept his attention the whole time(we saw Megamind)! We've gone a few times since and still no problems!! He is 2 1/2 now and we plan to see Cars2 also (he LOVES Cars). Keep in mind, if you are going to see a kids movie there will be other kids in the theater, as parents we all have the same concerns, but we also understand that kids will be kids sometimes...with a theater full of children, i'm sure that yours will not stand out! :)

Alicia - posted on 04/07/2011

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I took my son when he was two. We saw happy feet. I explained to him that about other people watching the movie and we had to be really quiet. He was familiar with having to be quiet from the library and church so he understood. I also told him that if he didn't want to sit still any longer that at any time we could go home. This worked well. However, there was one more thing I forgot to explain. After watching more then 1/2 the movie he turned to me and said he was ready to go home. I agreed and was proud that he understood what I expected of him, we got home and he said "ok, now let's finish the movie". :)

Karolyn - posted on 04/06/2011

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Maybe try taking him to one of the $5 kids movies at village cinemas. That way your not wasting too much money if you do end up having to leave half way through. My son only just went to his first movie and he's 5. Although was never really one for movies at a younger age.
Good luck with it :)

April - posted on 04/06/2011

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The best time is when you know for sure that your child will pay attention throughout the entire movie. If you know he will only watch 15 minutes of it then begin to play he'll eventually get bored and want to leave. Thats when they get fussy and become a distraction. So it's really up to you, you know your child more than anyone so if you think he can handle it, go for it.

Megan - posted on 04/06/2011

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Okay here's what I've been doing with my kids. I've been taking my oldest who is now 4.5 to the movies since he was practically a new born because I really wanted to go and was nursing at the time. The only time I have ever had a problem was at a bigger theater and some teenager who worked there came up to me was totally rude and said "you either need to shut your baby up or leave". My son was I think around 7-8 months at the time and was quietly babbling before they even started the previews and was starting to doze when the little jerk said that to me. But that was a larger theater and the manager did nothing about the way we were treated so we never went back. At our local theater they let kids in at any age or time except for like a super late showing and they don't care if your kid makes a little noise. They understand and it is a community thing. As long as the kid isn't screaming bloody murder they don't care at all. I take both boys now all the time and my youngest is 20 months. Most of the time if you have snacks or something to distract them prior to the movie kids are fine. If you are really concerned about it and have one in your area go to a drive-in. Nobody cares about anything there because you hear the movie on a speaker or your radio in the car. Plus if he gets antsy you can get out of the car and let him play in the grass while the movie is going. Most places show kids movies first than an adult movie for one decent price and kids are usually free if they are under 4 at most places.

Crystal - posted on 04/06/2011

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I seen your post saying he was 2,5 yrs old and very hyper. If it were me Id def wait til he was at least 4 if calmer... Then I think 5 or 6 is a good age, they are learning in Kindergarten to be still, pay attention, etc. Just my opinion. I didnt know he was that young when I replied before. My son is very hyper and is even being evaulated and is 6 will be 7 in Nov... He did have to use restroom "intentionally" alot but inside theatre did great. My 4 yr old daughter is total opposite. She did great all way through. My thoughts wait til he is older, esp if he is hyper because I know that all to well. Good age for that possibly 5 or 6. My opinion.

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My husband and I took our now 2 year old to Ice Age 3 when he was 8-10 months old. He was so good he was so fascinated by the screen the only time he fussed was when he got hungry. A bottle solved that problem and back to the movie it was. We also took him to the new Toy Story movie in the last year and he did great with that too. Stood up a few times but was glued to the screen. We tired the new live action movie "HOP" with the Easter bunny last week and all the live action and no bunny parts bored him, he whined and started tantrums, and we had to leave half way through with out seeing the end. But it seems as long it is all animation he does great. Good luck hope your lil guy will enjoy it and behave! My son is a big Cars fan and was ecstatic when he saw the preveiw for Cars 2 @ the beginning of HOP.

Laura - posted on 04/06/2011

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Call me crazy, but i took my 17 mo to see Yogi Bear, she has a pretty decent attention span for her age and thought it was great she got to sit in the same chairs we were, we sat in the back and i brought her snacks and she had a blast. granted the movie was only 80 min long(did that on purpose) good luck, ps i didn't know there was a cars 2.. super excited now

Tosha - posted on 04/06/2011

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We took our daughter to the movies for the first time when she was 3. We went to see "Monsters vs. Aliens". She was very good and sat through the whole thing. We sat in the very back so it would not be too overwhelming for her. She loved it.

Amanda - posted on 04/06/2011

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Hi Cassandra! I recently took my son (3) to see Yogi Bear (he saw the commercials and laughed hysterically!) as a treat for being totally potty trained! (WooHoo!) Well... good thing there weren't a bunch of people there because he was up and down about 10 times during the movie, and we ended up seeing about half of it after 6 trips to the bathroom, 2 to the concessions, and 2 more just to check everything out. I expected this, as it was his first movie as a big kid. But... a little frustrating as I wasn't expecting to be up and down that much. lol, I would just recommend sitting close to the exit so if you are up and down, it's not a big distraction to others.

Sara - posted on 04/06/2011

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There is a Reel Babies program that you can bring a baby to with excersaucers and so on I am not sure if there is other programs like it. I enjoyed bringing my oldes when he was 6 able to understand more of the movie so it became more interesting to sit through lol. I guesse it all depends on the child as well.

Crystal - posted on 04/06/2011

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My children are 4 and 6. My girl is 4 and my son whom is hyper is 6 BUT I took them by myself (without daddy for the first time) to see Rango....THEY DID AMAZING. I think it all depends on if your child is into the movie or disracted by everyone. I recommend trying an early time when not many people go to see how they react and go from there. Just what we are doing and its going good so far. Still havent took them to a popular time yet but will soon. They suprise you in things when you think it could be a bad turnout (like I thought and was shocked how well they did) GOOD LUCK WHEN YOU TRY.

Jannelle - posted on 04/06/2011

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My husband and I have been taking our son to go the theater since he was just months old. He is very good in the theater however my brother's children were around 4 when they started going and weren't that well behaved. I think it just depends on the child.

Kimberly - posted on 04/05/2011

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Yesterday I took my 2 year old to go see Gnomeo and Juliet. She did get a little restless however she sat through most of it.

Allie - posted on 04/05/2011

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I just took my son to his first movie! He'll be 3 in June. He LOVED IT!!! We saw Gnomeo and Juliet. I'm assuming this is common in most movie theaters, but there are booster seats that keep the seat folded down nicely and have a cup holder. I think that was his favorite part, being able to sit in his own seat!!! He just giggled the whole movie!

Tyrae - posted on 04/05/2011

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Where I live they have something called stars and strollers and its just for parents to take their kids to see the new movies that come out, usually ones like cars 2. You should see if somewhere near you does something like that. All the parents there wouldn't care if they were a distraction or not since they have their own kids too!

Charity - posted on 04/05/2011

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My son was 4 when I took him to his first movie. I was nervous bc he is a very active kid and won't stay still for long. But he did great, we went at 11 am showing and we were the only ones in the theater so in the end it didn't really matter.

Jen - posted on 04/05/2011

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I was in the same boat! When my son was 3 my friend insisted we were taking him to see Happy Feet for my birthday after we took him to see Santa...I was soo against it cuz I thought he would get bored and wanna leave or be loud and ppl would get mad & I would end up leaving and wasting all that money...so my friend said we are going, I am paying...and we did...and my son sat on my friends lap glued to the screen the whole time (except one pee break!) and I have been taking him ever since with no problems.

Bonnie - posted on 04/05/2011

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My boys are 2.5 and 4.5 and they have yet to go. They will probably go soon though. I'm not sure if anyone else mentioned this, but where I live the theatre has a Moms or parents with babies/strollers thing where there is a certain movie playing (usually an afternoon showing) that is just for little kids and parents. So this way you don't have to worry about them causing distractions because it's only little kids.

Jen - posted on 04/05/2011

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It depends on the child. I remember taking my neighbors when they were 2 and 4.5 to see Finding Nemo. The 4.5 year old was great, but the 2 year old made me never want to take a child under 3 to the movies again. All she did was walk back and forth between me and my friend the whole time. So this year when Toy Story 3 came out, I told my friend's son that I would take him for his 4th birthday when they started showing it in the $1 theater. I decided to try taking my daughter along too since she was getting better about sitting through a whole movie at home. She was not quite 3 and surprisingly did a good job. We made sure to all take a potty break before the movie and sat towards the end of the row just in case. We had our snacks and drinks and overall it was a good experience. We had to get up a few times, but it wasn't too bad and the theater wasn't packed. So my advice is to see how well your son watches a movie at home first and then try taking him to the theater. You never know how he'll act until you try it out first.

Savona - posted on 04/05/2011

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we took our daughter when she was about a year, we kinda got lucky cuz she liked how big the screen was and she watched, at times though we did have to take her cuz she was getting bored

Sebrina - posted on 04/04/2011

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For me I think it depends on the movie. If it is animated and something kids will be at then go for it. How well does your child watch tv or movies at home? I wouldn't take my kids to adult or more important. For instance though I wanted very badly to take my 2 year old with me so I could easily go see movie twilight saga movies. I wouldnlt want it ruined like that for me or anyone else, lol. For Cars 2 I say go for it cause I am. My family is excited for it to be in theater and I have a 6 month old and a 2 1/2 year old.

Julie - posted on 04/04/2011

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We took our son when he was 3. He was not perfect, but it is a long time to sit and concentrate. He was not in nappies so I was paranoid about him needing to go to the loo so I kept asking and then he kept wanting to go and was fasinated about the toilets at the cinema...!!! If you are worried about him distracting others, maybe take him to a session during the week rather than a weekend. Most other parents would understand if it is a childrens movie that some children will get excited etc. If he gets bored, leave and don't stress yourself and think you have to stay till the end.

Laura - posted on 04/04/2011

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I think the the best way to successfully take a younger child to the movies you should go to the earliest showing your theater offers around the time the movie is released (same week). Your more likely to have a theater full of kids, and then its not such a big deal if your son makes noise. Defiantly not a later movie, because I think those times are more for adults. Good luck :)

Ashleigh Jade - posted on 04/04/2011

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I take all 3 kids with me to movies,restraunts etc. they are 4,2 and 14months.
I always have qn activity bag for them so they dont get bored and start playing up. Its usually books,pencils, their fav toy etc.

I guess its up to you, if you think your child will sit go, just always have a back up plan and be ready to leave if need be.

Sandy - posted on 04/04/2011

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I have to say, my oldest is 3, and I have no plans to take him to a theatre anytime soon. But, he also doesn't watch much tv at home, and has never watched a movie at home. He might watch 1/2-1 hour of tv per week, and until lately wouldn't even sit for more than 15 minutes before getting bored and going to play. I don't think it has to do with attention span, but really feel at 3 he has better things to be doing than sitting in front of a tv or movie screen. However, if your child watches tv and likes it, I think it just depends on the child if it is appropriate or not (like most things).

Ginny - posted on 04/04/2011

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Glad some moms say they take their child at one..took my daughter around 4 months and havent since..interested in seeing how she would like it now(13 months)

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