Time to explore


By Paul Hall

After spending most of her life exploring the jungle with her parents Cole (Michael Peña) and Elena (Eva Longoria), Dora (Isabela Moner) has grown up. But the next exploration Dora’s parents take will be without her, as she is sent to Los Angeles to be with her cousin Diego (Jeff Wahlberg) in the new film Dora and the Lost City of Gold.

High school can be as treacherous as any jungle and Dora is just trying to “be herself” as her parents told her, but that kind of positivity is foreign to the teens creating a different atmosphere for our young lady.

While on a field trip to the museum, Dora, Diego and their friends Sammy (Madeline Madden) and Randy (Nicholas Coombe) are kidnapped and taken to South America. Their captors want the young Dora to traverse the jungle environment to find her parents and, ultimately, the lost city of gold that the bad guys crave. They are met by Alejandro (Eugenio Derbez), a friend of Dora’s parents, who helps them escape, and the four kids join Alejandro to explore the jungle. But who will find Dora’s parents and the lost city first?

There are elements of the Dora the Explorer television show here — Boots, Backpack, the map and even a trio of musical “artists” who pop up after the credits are a few of our friends who appear on the journey. This film is a fun adventure for the younger set, but I left scratching my head and asking: Who is this film geared toward? Dora is in high school, but her appeal has always been to younger kids. Will now grownup teens and 20-somethings see this film? And will kids in the younger set connect as thoroughly to the film as they do with the animated show?

While Dora is a fun journey, it seems to be a film that tries to be grownup and young at the same time, and that causes confusion in the messaging. Dora’s positivity is infectious, and hopefully that comes through for those who explore alongside our friend. Although the map doesn’t have all the answers here, Dora and the Lost City of Gold is an exploration worth taking for fans of the series.

Paul’s Grade: C+

Dora and the Lost City of Gold
Rated PG
Stars: Isabela Moner, Eugenio Derbez, Michael Peña
Director: James Bobin

Brought to you by the publishers of TV Guide Magazine, the ultimate TV resource packed with celebrity news and commentary on what’s new and what’s good to watch. Get TV Guide Magazine at 88% off the cover price: call 800-866-1400 or visit tvguidemagazine.com. ©TV Guide Magazine 2019.


The Angry Birds Movie 2
Rated PG
Voices: Jason Sudeikis, Josh Gad, Leslie Jones
Director: Thurop Van Orman
Our favorite flightless birds are back alongside the scheming pigs in the feud that is taken to the next level.

Blinded by the Light
Rated PG-13
Stars: Viveik Kalra, Kulvinder Ghir, Meera Ganatra
Director: Gurinder Chadha
The music of Bruce Springsteen influences a young man in 1987 Britain.

47 Meters Down: Uncaged
Rated PG-13
Stars: Sophie Nélisse, Corinne Foxx, Brianne Tju
Director: Johannes Roberts
Four young women set off on their own adventure diving in a ruined underwater city and quickly find themselves lost in the city’s labyrinth where deadly predators lurk.

Good Boys
Rated R
Stars: Jacob Tremblay, Keith L. Williams, Brady Noon
Director: Gene Stupnitsky
When three sixth graders, normally good kids, ditch school, they find themselves on a wild ride, learning about life like no other coming-of-age story.

Where’d You Go, Bernadette
Rated PG-13
Stars: Cate Blanchett, Kristen Wiig, Judy Greer
Director: Richard Linklater
A mom decides to reconnect with her creative side and starts an adventure that reboots her life and leads to a a triumphant discovery.