Worldwide icon-chevron-right Europe icon-chevron-right United Kingdom icon-chevron-right England icon-chevron-right London icon-chevron-right The best summer kids films of 2013
Despicable Me 21/6
Steve Carell returns as the voice of reformed villain Gru, surrounded by his vast army of zany yellow minions. Kids will love the fast pace and bizarre characters, and the other voices include Russell Brand and Kristen Wiig. If this sounds good, try…The original ‘Despicable Me’. 'Despicable Me 2' is in UK cinemas now
Monsters University2/6
Little ones won’t even remember ‘Monsters Inc.’. That doesn’t matter as this Pixar animation is a prequel to the 2001 hit – so you don’t need to know the story. Here we follow the early friendship and college days of monsters Mike and Sulley. If this sounds good, try…Anything by the utterly brilliant Pixar (‘Monsters Inc.’, ‘Toy Story’, ‘Wall-E’, ‘The Incredibles’, ‘Finding Nemo’…). 'Monsters University' is in UK cinemas now
The Smurfs 23/6
This 3D cartoon is the second of a planned trilogy based on the bright blue creatures from the famous Belgian comics. Only now the Smurfs are American, and in this episode Smurfette is kidnapped and taken to Paris. Which doesn’t sound too bad. If this sounds good, you could try…The first ‘The Smurfs’ movie. Or you could find the original TV series for little ones with shorter attention spans. 'The Smurfs 2' opens in UK cinemas on July 31
Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters4/6
This is the second instalment in a series of fantasy adventures based on Rick Riordan’s novels about a boy who is the son of the Greek god Poseidon. It’s live action and this time Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) sets out to retrieve the golden fleece. Suitable for slightly older kids. If this sounds good, try…Any of the eight Harry Potter films – again. Any of the four ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ films – again. Or opt for a classic with attention-span-stretching 1963 live action and stop-motion adventure ‘Jason and the Argonauts’. 'Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters' opens in UK cinemas on August 7
Planes5/6
This brightly coloured animation is a spin-off from Pixar’s noisy ‘Cars’ films. It tells the tale of Dusty, a modest plane who’s afraid of racing and heights but dreams of being a high-flying racer. It should make up for a lack of sophistication with simple charm. If this sounds good, you could try…The two ‘Cars’ films. Or just have hundreds of hours of free fun watching plane-, car- and trainspotting vids on YouTube: also amazingly popular with three-year-olds. 'Planes' opens in UK cinemas on August 16
One Direction – This Is Us6/6
There’ll be screaming in the aisles during this documentary on the world’s hottest young band. It’s directed by ‘Super Size Me’ doc-maker Morgan Spurlock so there should be some wit along with the bare chests. If this sounds good, you could try…‘Justin Bieber: Never Say Never’. Or take ’em back to the time when bands were original with ‘Help!’, the Fab Four’s ludicrous rescue caper in which Ringo is kidnapped for his, erm, ring. 'One Direction: This Is Us' opens in UK cinemas on August 29

The best summer kids films of 2013

Keep little ones (and not so little ones) entertained all summer long

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Summer holidays are as much about giant boxes of popcorn and fizzy drinks at the flicks as picnics in the park (without the hassle smearing suncream onto squirming faces). Here’s our pick of the best summer movies for kids… and some watch-at-home alternatives.

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