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Old Dogs

Score: 80%
Rating: PG
Publisher: Walt Disney Home
                  Entertainment

Region: A
Media: Blu-ray/3
Running Time: 88 Mins.
Genre: Family/Comedy
Audio: Blu-ray: English 5.1 DS-HD
           Master Audio, French, Spanish
           5.1 Dolby Digital; DVD: English
           Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
           Sound, French, Spanish

Subtitles: Blu-ray: English SDH, French,
           Spanish; DVD: English, French,
           Spanish


Features:

  • Young Dogs Learn New Tricks (Blu-ray Disc Only)
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Bloopers
  • Audio Commentary
  • Music Videos:
    • "You've Been A Friend To Me" (Bryan Adams)
    • "Every Little Step" (John Travolta and Ella Bleu Travolta)

Old Dogs is a family-friendly and fun tale that thrusts two long-term bachelors in a role neither of them know how to handle, fatherhood.

Charlie (John Travolta) and his business partner and lifelong friend Dan (Robin Williams) have got a life neither of them would trade. Charlie spends his days in the office and his nights at clubs picking up 20 somethings, while Dan buries himself in his work. On the verge of the biggest deal of the pair's career, an old flame of Dan's, Vicki (Kelly Preston - Travolta's wife), shows up and tells Dan that he has a pair of seven year-old twins in Zach (Conner Rayburn) and Emily (Ella Bleu Travolta - John's daughter). At first, this announcement was supposed to be merely an introduction, but when Vicki, who has become an activist, confesses she is going to spend a couple of weeks in jail, Dan volunteers to look after the kids.

Needless to say, Dan (and, by association, Charlie) have gotten in over their heads. After a very rocky start, the quartet start to mesh, but the whole time, Charlie and Dan are trying to work their deals with a major Japanese company. One of these business meetings occurs on the golf course, but unfortunately a mix-up between the two father-figures' medicines leaves each one coping with side-effects they hadn't counted on. Charlie spends time with a permanently paralyzed smile while Dan ends up with a thick tongue and depth perception problems (not a good combination for golfing and negotiating).

Along for the ride are executive-in-training Ralph White (Seth Green), master puppeteer Jimmy Lunchbox (Bernie Mac) and camp director Barry (Matt Dillion) who really add a lot to the film as interesting characters for Travolta and Williams to play off of. Green's character acts as a protege' to the pair who is really excited about going to Japan, but fumbles so badly he does whatever it takes to make up for his mistake. The late Bernie Mac's final role has him trying to teach the older father figures how to entertain kids, while Dillon's character plays out a funny sequence as the main quartet try to rough it.

The Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Copy combo of Old Dogs of course has a lot of value, especially for families that have a high definition home theater, as well as in-car DVD players. As for the Blu-ray's surround sound and visual quality, they are good, but there isn't really any aspect of this movie that begs to be in high-def. As for the package's bonus features, Old Dogs offers a good compilation of bloopers and deleted scenes, but also an amusing interview where the two kids interview the two older cast members. The other extras are a pair of music videos, one of Bryan Adams performing "You've Been a Friend" and one of the two Travolta's singing "Every Little Step" in a manner that reminded me a lot of Will Smith's "Just the Two of Us."

Old Dogs really is a fun family movie with a lot of physical humor that will entertain both kids and adults alike. While the high definition aspect of this package isn't necessary, the Blu-ray and DVD package really makes the money worth it. That being said, Old Dogs isn't really a movie you need to watch over and over again, unless of course your kids really grab onto it as they often do.



-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

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