|Marcus makes a movie
Author: Hart, Kevin
Marcus is NOT happy to be stuck in after-school film class . . . until he realizes he can turn the story of the cartoon superhero he's been drawing for years into an actual MOVIE! There's just one problem: he has no idea what he's doing. Making this movie won't be easy. But as Marcus discovers, nothing great ever is--and if you want your dream to come true, you've got to put in the hustle to make it happen.
|Added Entry - Personal Name:
|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 3.70
Points: 5.0 Quiz: 514744
Kirkus Reviews (05/15/21)
School Library Journal (07/30/21)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 06/01/2021 With expert coaching from Rodkey, film star and stand-up comedian Hart kicks off a middle-grade series featuring—not coincidentally, according to the introduction—a character with an artistic bent, anger issues, a single dad, and a sudden yen to make a movie. Young Marcus would rather just draw superhero comics, but being forced to sign up for film club because it’s the only after-school activity left open, he quickly becomes a man on a mission. Some schooling in the virtues of teamwork and compromise—plus plenty of eye-opening lessons in casting, screenplay writing, and other requisite skills later—Toothpick Fights the Doom is a “MeTube” sensation. Cooper’s scattered monochrome scenes alternate isolated pages of Marcus’ melodramatic comics with views of the largely Black cast in theatrical poses. By the end, Marcus has begun to work his way out of the emotional rut he’s been in since his mother’s death, found in “gangly mean girl” Sierra a perceptive, if mouthy, collaborator for future projects, and given readers a glimpse of what working hard to make a dream a reality looks like. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 07/30/2021 Gr 3–6—Marcus loves to draw comics about Toothpick, a young Black boy superhero. When his father insists he join an after-school club, he chooses the filmmaking class. It occurs to him that he can use this opportunity to turn his Toothpick comics into a movie. He isn't thrilled to see Sierra in his class, having had an unfortunate encounter with her on a bus—then he learns that while each student can work on their own project, the class will also work together on Sierra's screenplay, Phone Zombies. In a temper, he quits. But Sierra makes him a deal to return if the class will help with his project too. The learning curve is enormous and the amount of work intense, but Marcus wants to succeed so badly that he puts in the work. With the help of the other kids, Sierra especially, and a lot of trouble-shooting, it seems his dream may become a reality. Things take a downturn when Marcus insists on sneaking into a hospital to film a scene. It seems his movie will never be made unless Marcus can come to terms with his mistake and his reasons for making it. Marcus i a flawed but appealing character with a dream that young readers will be able to relate to easily. The movie-making details are integrated smoothly and make for an interesting glimpse of the process. Cooper's black-and-white illustrations add humor and excitement to the text. The underlying themes of learning from your mistakes and working hard to pursue your dreams shine through. VERDICT An entertaining read and great choice for young readers who want more depth than "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" and "Dork Diaries" provide.—Heidi Grange, Summit Elem. Sch., Smithfield, UT - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.