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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Old Dogs

Old Dogs - A Walt Disney Pictures Release


Release Date: November 25th, 2009

Rated PG for some mild rude humour

Running time: 88 minutes

Walt Becker (dir.)

David Diamond (screenwriter)

David Weissman (screenwriter)

John Debney (music)

John Travolta as Charlie

Robin Williams as Dan

Kelly Preston as Vicki

Conner Rayburn as Zach

Ella Bleu Travolta as Emily

Seth Green as Ralph White

Bernie Mac as Jimmy Lunchbox

(L-R) John Travolta, Robin Williams Ph: Ron Phillips ©Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Our reviews below:


Old Dogs Review By John C.

**1/2 (out of 4)

About a year ago, I gave a mild, sort-of recommendation, (**1/2 stars), to the film Four Christmases. Like Old Dogs, the new Disney comedy opening today, it wasn’t that great, but it also wasn’t that bad. And more importantly, audiences are going to love it.

Old Dogs stars John Travolta as Charlie, a hard working sports publicist, and Robin Williams as his long-time business partner, Dan. When Dan finds out that he’s got 7-year old twins, he ends up having to watch them for two weeks while their mother has a stint in jail. I found it sort of bitter sweet to see Bernie Mac in a side role, that turns out to be his last.

Though it is mildly amusing, a lot of the jokes fell flat for me, and some of the humour I found to be of the stupid/mildly cruel variety. But I’m also not the target demographic, as this is a fairly clean film that is going to appeal mostly to kids.

This film gets the extra 1/2 star for the audiences that I know who are going to love it. It should be noted that the crowd I saw it with seemed to have a great time. This would be a good choice for families of older kids who are looking for something to see over the holidays, but really, the best choice would be to just stay home and watch Mrs. Doubtfire.


Old Dogs Review By Erin V.

**1/2 (out of 4)

Old Dogs is a slapstick, at times amusing, comedy. Robin Williams and John Travolta play Dan and Charlie, two guys in marketing. Then, Dan hears from a woman whom he met in Florida 7 years ago. Turns out, he has twins - a boy and a girl. Their mother has to go to jail for two weeks for trespassing, and in a bind asks him to watch the kids. Getting Charlie to help him, it is clear that these two know absolutely nothing about how to take care of kids. Towards the end, the film deviates slightly from it's repeated physical comedy to turn into something sort of sweet.

Sure, the plot was predictable - at one point, I thought, 'it must be about a half hour from the end...', looking at my watch, I found that I was almost spot on. How did I know? The film was so obviously structured, that the plot points felt like they had been written in a class in '3 act structure'. So much so, that I could tell how far into the film we were just by the turning points of the characters. Most films have turning points at similar positions, but should flow so that they are unnoticeable.

From two such well known actors, I'd think they could have chosen to do something at least a little better than this? Anyway, this film will be enjoyed by families, with kids maybe 9 or 10 and up. I didn't have a bad time watching it - admittedly, I actually found it to be entertaining enough. I'm giving it a half star more for that reason.


Old Dogs Review By Nicole

**1/2 (out of 4)

Old Dogs is a fun, lighthearted family film. Starring Robin Williams and John Travolta, this movie tells the story of Dan and Charlie, two middle aged marketing agents who live a normal life. Their lives get turned upside down however, when Dan gets a call from a woman whom he was once briefly married to. She has been arrested for a minor offence, and wants the father of her tow seven year old kids to watch them during her brief incarceration. Dan, with the help of Charlie, learns to be a good fathers. He then has to choose between work and family.

Old Dogs has a nice message about family values. Both children and seniors will enjoy this movie, as the humour is relatively clean. Despite what the trailers might make you thing, Old Dogs has more than just gags. this movie has heart. A fun choice to take the family to this holiday season.


Old Dogs Review By Maureen

**1/2 (out of 4)

Old Dogs is the story of two old dogs, business partners Charlie (John Travolta) and Dan (Robin Williams). The two bachelors are in the middle of a big business when the unthinkable happens - Dan finds out he'll be caring for his six year old twins, a son and daughter he didn't know he had.

if it weren't for the strong comedic talents of John Travolta and Robin Williams, Old Dogs would have fallen flat. There are a lot of over the top visual gags and silly situations that the two men encounter when their worlds are turned upside down by the two kids. This really is a laugh out loud kind of movie. I thought the two seniors sitting next to me would choke on their popcorn they were laughing so hard.

I have to admit I liked this movie in spite of the predictable storyline and some cheap laughs. Sometimes it's fun to watch a movie that is pure fun and light entertainment. Not every movie has to be Oscar material. There are also a lot of sweet moments in Old Dogs.

Old Dogs is very much a family film. Fans of John Travolta and Robin Williams who want to watch see something fun for the holidays will want to check this one out. Old Dogs will also play well on DVD.


Old Dogs Review By Tony

**1/2 (out of 4)

Old Dogs is calculated to be a hit, pairing John Travolta and Robin Williams as long-time partners in a sporting goods business. JT is the marketing man and an aging playboy, while the awkward RW is more creative. In a pitch to prospective Japanese clients, JT recounts an embarrassing one-night stand about eight years prior including a quickie marriage and divorce for RW. Suddenly, the ex (Kelly Preston) shows up with RW’s twins, that he has to watch for two weeks while she serves time for tree-hugging.

As a Disney film, Old Dogs never misses a chance for a cheap laugh or stereotype, such as a sycophantic board of Japanese executives responding in unison to the boss’s cues. No doubt the nonstop gags will be fresh for the kids the film is aimed at and their elders won’t mind sitting through the old shtick one more time. It’s not a bad film and the stars will make a lot of money, but compared to earlier work such as Mrs. Doubtfire it’s just a waste of time.


Consensus: **1/2 (Out of 4)

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