Disney // 2011 // 84 Minutes // Rated G
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // February 6th, 2011
The family just got bigger.
After Babe: Pig in the City, it was all downhill for live-action talking animal movies. We're getting real close to the nadir with this release.
The film opens with an ostentatious wedding and reception between two Chihuahuas and that's officially when I mentally checked out. Blue collar rat-dog Papi (voiced by George Lopez) and prim and proper Chloe tie the knot then eventually poop out a bunch of tiny rat-dog-things.
Meanwhile, their benevolent owner and his family are stunned to discover that if you don't pay your mortgage, the bank might take away your house. Scrambling to pull together the balance they enter a dog show, only to be confronted by rampant bigotry towards non-purebreds. Oh well, it's on to Plan B: foiling a gang of bank robbers (of course).
This is the lowest denominator of Disney straight-to-video moviemaking. Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2 isn't base or offensive, it's just lazy and painfully cookie-cutter. I can almost imagine the producers' discussion:
PRODUCER 1: "We need to release a movie."
PRODUCER 2: "Preferably one with talking animals."
PRODUCER 3: "How about a sequel to Beverly Hills Chihuahua?"
PRODUCER 1: "Never heard of it. I don't let my kids watch that crap."
There is absolutely nothing happening here that you haven't seen before in everything from an episode of Hannah Montana to whichever was the most recent live-action talking animals Disney movie. The Chihuahuas' lovable, financially-strapped owner needs rescuing from a ridiculous, mustache-twirling bank villain; further class bigotry prevents our heroes from winning cash in a competition; and finally the dogs foil the dumbest bank robbers in history with dog-related hijinks. All of this familiarity is executed in wit-free fashion and humor relies on corny one-liners and slapstick.
But...the caveat here is that this film is not designed for you. It's designed for your kids and, you know, they'll probably like the talking dogs and the funny, chubby bank robbers falling on their fat faces. However, parents, I plead with you, don't give in to their temper tantrums! What kind of world will we have when the youth of American grow up thinking that weddings for tiny dogs is normal?!
An adequate Blu-ray awaits, starting with a solid, if unremarkable 1.78:1, 1080p transfer. Picture quality overall is HD-appropriate despite some detail softness. But it's a manic Disney film so you can expect some vibrant colors, which the treatment serves up nicely. The 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio is clean and active. Extras: an interactive game, blooper reel and a music video.
More lame kids crap.
Guilty. Go back to your day job hocking Taco Bell.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.78:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080p)
* DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio (English)
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (French)
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (Spanish)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 84 Minutes
Release Year: 2011
MPAA Rating: Rated G
* Music Video
* DVD Copy