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BOLT, 2008
Movie Reviews!

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BOLT
Movie Review
Directed by Byron Howard, Chris Williams
Voices by John Travolta, Miley Cyrus, Susie Essman
Review by Eli Manning



SYNOPSIS:

Telling the story a dog who plays a heroic dog in a hit TV show and has some trouble recognizing that he doesn't even have superpowers. This becomes something of a hindrance when he is accidentally shipped from Hollywood to New York City. From there he has to make his way home with the help of a manky old cat and an overweight hamster in a plastic ball.

REVIEW:

Bolt the dog is the ultimate method actor. His performance on his hit TV show is so good, you think he wasn't even acting!

Of course he isn't acting at all as the humans are pulling the ultimate con on him. They make him think that he actually is a super-dog and that the fiction show is actually real. If you really think about it, it's a bit of a mind f**k to pull on a little old dog.

That's the basis of this animation movie. The dog gets taken away by mistake to New York and the rest of the movie is him and his newly inherited gang to get back to Hollywood.

I liked Bolt. It's not as great as say WALL-E or Ratatouille where those heroes go on great journeys on self-exploration, but it's better than most animation films. What makes Bolt different from almost all the animation movies from Disney is that it's actually an action film. If it was an live-action film, this would be put into the action genre and not the family/animation genre.

The first five minutes of this film has some terrific action. But of course the scenes are from the TV show and not real life.

We feel for Bolt the dog right away for what 'those humans' are doing to him. He's practically living the canine version of The Truman Show and treated as a slave for the entertainment of the human masses.

When Bolt gets out to the real world all by himself, he's a bit thrown and that leads to the comedy of the movie. Essentially this is a film about a dog who needs to learn how to be a dog like he's suppose to be.

It's also another story about the extended family. Bolt and his cat friend Mittens (voiced by Curb Your Enthusiam's Susie Essman) form a great relationship with one another. Mittens has the street smarts and mentors Bolt in the world of the animal. And Bolt has the heart and soul to reteach Mittens, as she has lost her essence for life along the way.

The humans have screwed over Mittens and of course Bolt. But along the journey they need to both learn to love them again. Why? I really know don't as I guess the only reason is the humans made this film. Do animals really need to have the love of the human species? Bolt tells us they do, but of course in reality they don't. I kind of wished the animals left the humans all together in the end, but I had to remember that I was watching a Disney film.

Showcased in the new Disney-D (3D glasses), this is a film that's also trying to catch the new wave of how movies can be watched so it's separated from the home movie audience. The 3D movie experience still needs a few ironing out details, but it's definitely fun to watch and worth the few extra dollars.

3D film is definitely for movies like this. With action sequences, they are able to heighten the experience. As Smittens jumps from the train, we the audience and most definitely the kids jump with them too.

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The trick of 3D is balance. To not overdue it and to not under-due it either. If it gets done too much, then they are just showing off and we lose the story essence. If it's not done enough, then we are left wondering why we're wearing these heavy glasses in the first place.

This film overdoes it many times. During the non-thriller scenes where it's a dramatic moment between the characters, we don't need the 3D effects at all. It just gets too busy. But they better show us as many effects as possible during action moments to separate itself from the other movies.

Bottom line, this film isn't all that bad and I do recommend it for children. It can be a little scary at times, but I think children are aware that this is just animation. And it tells a good story, especially if you like dogs and cats.

3 stars out of 4!center>

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