‘The Star’ shines any time of year with its sweet story of Jesus’ birth

Bo (Steven Yeun) and Ruth (Aidy Bryant) in Sony Pictures Animations' THE STAR.

“The Star,” the sweet story of the Nativity in theaters last Christmas, is out on Blu-Ray + Digital + DVD! Like the “Greatest story ever told” depicted in the movie, “The Star” also features another story of glory found in an unlikely place. Its hero isn’t a mighty steed or a roaring lion, but a little donkey named Bo (voiced by Steven Yeun.)

Bo breaks free of his simple life pulling the grindstone at the village mill, and searches for adventure along with a plucky sheep named Ruth (adorably voiced by Aidy Bryant) and a silly dove named Dave (Keegan-Michael Key.)

Bo befriends Mary (Gina Rodriguez) just as she is about to tell Joseph (Zachary Levi) her big news (spoiler alert: she’s having a baby!) Their stories align, and the animals find more excitement than they bargained for as they follow the star to Bethlehem.

Also, there’s Oprah.

Three camels, voiced by Oprah Winfrey, Tyler Perry and Tracy Morgan, trail the group on their journey.

Felix (Tracy Morgan), Deborah (Oprah Winfrey) and Cyrus (Tyler Perry) in Sony Pictures Animations’ THE STAR.

When I choose entertainment for my kids, I prefer it to be squeaky-clean, and if it includes Biblical references, I don’t want them to be watered-down or inaccurate.

“The Star” diligently tells the story of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem, with creative liberties in the form of talking animals sprinkled throughout. It is endearingly simple, and takes its time telling the story, without succumbing to the quick pace or crude humor of other movies geared to young children.

Its PG rating (for “thematic elements”) is actually accurate, with very few slightly rude jokes that may go unnoticed to someone not specifically looking for them.

The soundtrack, also notable for its thoughtful selections, includes Mariah Carey’s “The Star,” along with sweet renditions of traditional hymns and Christmas songs. Stand-outs include “Children Go Where I Send You” by Kelsea Ballerini, “His Eye is on the Sparrow” by Casting Crowns and “Carol of the Bells” by Pentatonix. I also love the inclusion of “Mary, Did You Know,” one of the most beautiful Christmas songs ever written, sung by Zara Larsson and written by Mark Lowery.

I would absolutely recommend “The Star” for your child’s Easter basket! It is a wonderful telling of Jesus’ birth, with lovely animation and an entertaining cast of voices that will engage your kids’ busy little minds.

 

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