Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Bolt - Movie Review

BOLT (***1/2) - Starring the voices of John Travolta, Miley Cyrus, Susie Essman, Mark Walton, Malcolm McDowell, James Lipton and Greg Germann.
Directed by Chris Williams.

Pixar's John Lasseter served as executive producer on this, and I can see his touch. The story is more solid than Chicken Little, if not more familiar, and yet it has its own flavor.

I have a hard time counting the CGI animation movies as part of the Disney animated classics. To me, Disney animation stopped with Home on the Range (a bad note on which to end) and it will be revived with The Princess & the Frog next year. Meanwhile this is the best of the Disney CGI flicks, and actually the best non-Pixar animated film to come from Disney since Lilo & Stitch.

John Travolta voices Bolt, a Hollywood action dog who isn't aware that he has super powers and he's just on a TV show. When an episode ends in a cliffhanger, bolt still fears his person Penny is in danger. He escapes but accidentally gets shipped to New York, so he must trek back to L.A. to save her. Along the way he picks up a declawed cat and a fat hamster in a roller ball as traveling companions.

I counted three subplots from the Toy Story movies in here, but the characters are likeable enough that it's easily forgiven and forgotten. Right now for me, it rivals Kung Fu Panda as to what was the second-best animated movie of the year.

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