Sunday, October 12, 2008
Review: BEVERLY HILLS CHIHUAHUA
I had it coming. Ever since I penned my Beverly Hills Chihuahua defending debut post at the Movie Watch I knew I was destined to see it, even if I knew I'll be eating crow in the process. The result, well as I stated in my previous post Beverly Hills Chihuahua is far from a Disney classic but considering the awfully low pedigree it's coming from (Raja Gosnell, the director of the dreadful Scooby-Doo live-action movies and Big Momma's House amoung others) I found the film to be a pleasant surprise. Beverly Hills Chihuahua will entertain anyone in the 6-9 year old crowd that laughed at the teaser before WALL-E and is inoffensive enough to keep parents from checking their watch too often.
The plot of Beverly Hills Chihuahua mostly serves as a vehicle just to get more talking animals on the screen. The basic premise follows Chloe (voiced by Drew Barrymore), a spoiled Paris Hilton-esque chihuahua as she gets lost in Mexico and caught up in a dog fighting circuit. There's also Papi a day laborer who sounds and acts like George Lopez (voiced by George Lopez) who is in love with our titular hero. Offensive stereotypes aside the plot is very simple but it has a few genuine moments here and there which sort of half work due to a lack of a proper build-up.
Luckily, the horrible CG seen in the teaser trailer is fairly scarce in the actual movie and apart from a few "pee-jokes" the humor is fairly low-key. As for Raja Gosnell this is a huge step up from his previous dreadful work but as an actual Disney branded movie it would be a bit of a letdown for families expecting the depth of WALL-E or even Bolt for that matter. Then again, the Disney "brand" has already been diluted to the point where a Little Mermaid prequel is reduced to a plot about hip hop music spreading to Atlantica.
The question of whether or not you should see it really boils down to how much your "kids" want to see it and if you'd like anything that happens to have a cute animal in the leading role. Young children will love the quirkiness (albeit wholly unoriginal) in the film and parents will love the fact that it gives them an hour and a half of peace while being mildly amusing at the same time. While I cannot recommend Beverly Hills Chihuahua, you can certainly do a lot worse, even when dealing with Disney comedies about anthropomorphic dogs.