“Underdog”

underdog.jpgJason Lee
James Belushi
Peter Dinklage
Patrick Warburton
Alex Neuberger
Taylor Momsen
John Slattery
Samantha Bee
Brad Garrett
Amy Adams

PG           121min           2007

After an accident in the mysterious lab of maniacal scientist Dr. Simon Barsinister, an ordinary beagle unexpectedly finds himself with unimaginable powers and the ability to speak. Armed with a fetching superhero costume, Underdog vows to protect the beleaguered citizens of Capitol City.

“Underdog” is the live action film of a cartoon that came on in the early eighties; that’s where I first saw Underdog. This version is geared more to children under 12. It is a dumb-down plot that was borderline boring. It’s redeeming factor is the voice acting.

The simplicity of the plot, the dialog, and the action is all geared to children under 12. It is something entertaining to sit them in front of and not have to worry about them for the two hours. It has bright and flashy color that the children won’t notice the time when by as for him after about forty minutes I was really ready to turn underdog into a hot dog.

The only thing that made “Underdog” bearable for me was the voice talent of Jason Lee, Amy Adams, and Brad Garrett. Their distinct voices complimented the acting of animals, which they were portraying. I got totally lost in the mouthing of the animals. The mouth morphing has been elevated to the point where at some points I forgot that these animals don’t really speak. This is a great film if you have children, a good film if you are a fan, but marginally ok if you have no idea who, Underdog is.

Even the special features to “Underdog” is geared to children. It has never before seen bloopers and deleted scenes. It has an music video by Kyle Massey of That’s Raven and Corey in the House fame, called “Underdog Raps”. A mock featurette called “Sit, Stay, Act: Diary of a Dog Actor” and an original episode of the cartoon “Safe Waif”. There are movie previews for “101 Dalmatians”, “National Treasure: Book of Secrets”, “The Game Plan”, “Snow Buddies”, “The Aristocats”, “Cinderella II: Dreams Do Come True”.

I give it 3/5 Gs.

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