Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

Underdog

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
5.5 out of 10
Extras Rating:
6 out of 10
Movie Details:
View here

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Rating: PG

Starring:
Jason Lee as Underdog (voice)
Peter Dinklage as Dr. Simon Barsinister
James Belushi as Dan Unger
Patrick Warburton as Cad
Alex Neuberger as Jack Unger
Taylor Momsen as Molly
Amy Adams as Polly (voice)
John Slattery as Mayor
Brad Garrett as Riff Raff (voice)
Samantha Bee as Principal
Timothy Crowe as Police Chief

Special Features:
Never-Before-Seen Bloopers
Deleted Scenes
"Underdog Raps" Music Video Performance By Kyle Massey
"Sit. Stay. Act: Diary Of A Dog Actor"
Underdog Original Cartoon Episode "Safe Waif"

Other Info:
Widescreen (2.350:1) and Fullscreen (1.33:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
French and Spanish Language
French and Spanish Subtitles
Running Time: 82 Minutes

Synopsis:
The following is from the DVD cover:

"It's a bird, it's a plane, it's a frog...no, it's Disney's Underdog -- a flying, talking canine caped crusader! After an accident in the mysterious lab of mad scientist Dr. Simon Barsinister, an ordinary beagle named Shoeshine finds himself with extraordinary powers...and the ability to talk! Armed with a fetching superhero costume, Underdog vows to protect the beleaguered citizens of Capital City and, in particular, a beautiful spaniel named Polly Purebred. When a diabolical plot by Barsinister and his overgrown henchman Cad threatens to destroy Capital City, only Underwear...(oops!)...Underdog can save the day. Based on the original hit animated series 'Underdog' -- your family will love watching the next great hero take a big bite out of crime."

"Underdog" is rated PG for rude humor, mild language and action.

Mini-Review:
There are a couple of things I'm looking for in a kid's movie. First off, does it entertain kids? Yup. My kids saw this in theaters and on DVD and they're still eager to see it again. So it's certainly good for keeping them out of trouble for 82 minutes. Second, does it entertain me? Well, not really. It was interesting to see how they adapted the cartoon I grew up with, but I can't say I loved it or would go out of my way to see it again. But it did have a few positive points.

I thought they did a pretty good job with the special effects. It was certainly fun to see a flying dog fighting crime. Some of the shots were better than others, but kids will enjoy it. Some of the dialogue was funnier than expected, too. They exhausted just about every dog joke possible, but they still managed to get a few good lines in elsewhere. The cast was decent as well. Jason Lee is generally good as the voice of Underdog. Patrick Warburton continues to be stereotyped as the big, dumb henchman as Cad. Fortunately, it still works for him. I'm a fan of Peter Dinklage, but he was a bit flat as Dr. Simon Barsinister. I'd have liked to have seen a bit more energy out of him.

If you've got kids to entertain, "Underdog" will fit the bill. And if you have to watch it with them, you probably won't be contemplating suicide while watching it.

This DVD is a little light on the bonus features. You'll find your standard offering of bloopers and the "Underdog Raps" Music Video by Kyle Massey. "Sit. Stay. Act: Diary Of A Dog Actor" is your standard 'making of' featurette narrated by Underdog. Unfortunately, they have featurettes within this video that you must click to view. If you hit the button too early, you miss part of the main featurette. If you don't click fast enough, your opportunity to see it passes by. It's pretty frustrating. There are also a few deleted scenes. One features Dr. Simon Barsinister heading into City Hall with his German Shepherds and encountering a little girl. Another deleted scene shows Polly's owner as a reporter snapping photos of teachers at the school. Rounding out the bonus features is the original Underdog cartoon "Safe Waif". This gives younger viewers a taste of what the cartoon was like.

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