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Curator for a Day

When eight-year-old Hannah Gribetz entered Movies for Kids’ third annual Kids Curator Contest, she was certain of one thing. “In Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Snow White, the prince always rescues the girl. It’s annoying. I thought girls should have an adventure this time.” Gribetz submitted the theme Girl Power! Another New Yorker, seven-year-old Rosie Hertzman, voiced a similar sentiment when she suggested Adventures with Girls. “I like movies where girls fight men who say they can’t do things,” says Hertzman. “It makes me feel like I can do anything.”

Both ideas caught the eye of Isa Cucinotta, co-curator of Movies for Kids, which is presented by the Film Society of Lincoln Center (www.filmlinc.com). This year’s festival, Girl Power! Adventures with Girls, running from March-June 2001, is showing a medley of classic, contemporary, and even foreign films-all with powerful girl protagonists, many selected by their kid curators. Hertzman suggested two films from the 1930s, Anne of Green Gables and Heidi. “Anne is really strong about her feelings and she wants to be the best in her class, better than a boy. And I like that Heidi is brave.” Gribetz opted for more modern movies. “I picked Matilda because she’s strong, especially with her brain,” she explains. “And I love Madeline because things don’t happen to her; she makes them happen herself.”

The prize for winning the Kids Curator Contest? Free passes to every screening with the obligatory popcorn and soda accompaniments, a prospect that electrifies the otherwise soft-spoken Hertzman. “I love popcorn!” she exclaims. “Better than candy. Better than chocolate.” Gribetz isn’t pondering the concession-stand carte blanche. Not yet, anyway. “I’m just glad no boys with motorcycles or girls with Cinderella stories won.”

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