There's something special about finding a movie you can connect with. But, when you're a parent, finding a movie you can connect with comes in second to finding a movie your kids can connect with. Throw in finding a movie your partner can connect with, and now you have a math problem that is basically unsolvable. Jon Heder, of Surf's Up 2: WaveMania, knows the importance of finding that sweet spot. Luckily, his new movie — the sequel to Surf's Up — is that sweet spot that every parent is hoping to stumble upon when looking for a little entertainment for both them and and their children.
"Animation has the ability, like any film, to tell a story. You can create worlds, you can create characters, you can really do anything you want," Heder tells Romper in an interview. "[Animation] allows you to tell these stories that adults can easily connect to just as well as kids can."
The sequel follows Cody Maverick looking for a new challenge — one that seems almost impossible. He wants to join a seriously impressive big wave riding crew (The Hang 5, voiced by John Cena and other WWE superstars) and ride the biggest waves that supposedly haunting The Trenches.
So how does that translate into that sweet spot parents will be looking for when consuming entertainment with their children? "[Surf's Up 2] is a coming of age story. It is about youth learning lessons (Editor note: Surf's Up 2 has an overarching message that winning isn't everything) that parents can relate to. It's always fun for parents to see their kids learn lessons."
Heder himself knows what it is like to find entertainment that the entire family can watch. As a father of four, Heder says that he and his wife, "kids of the '80s", have just started showing their children films Heder has done. "We sit down as an entire family and all equally enjoy a show... They love it, and not like 'Oh, that's fun because it's dad's voice.' I think they forget almost every [time]..."
The film also has a message of unity, something that is important for kids to learn at any age. For Heder, he and his family find that movie nights are true moments of unity for the family.
We do movie nights, and we try to introduce them to all our favorite movies we grew up watching... all the classics. When you watch a movie with your child that you grew up watching and you see the emotions and them figuring it out — there's something breathtaking about it. It sounds cheesy, but it almost makes me emotional...
For families looking for a similar experience, Surf's Up 2 is now available on DVD and digitally for you and your children to enjoy.