Old Dogs

Featured In Issue 147, March/April 2010

WSR Score4
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Walt Disney Home Entertainment
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Walt Becker
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Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS HD Lossless 5.1
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John Travolta and Robin Williams star in Old Dogs, a family comedy that pairs the two as close business partners whose lives are thrown into disarray when twin seven-year-olds are put into their care. Travolta's wife, Kelly Preston, co-stars, along with the couple's daughter, Ella, who makes her big-screen debut here. (Gary Reber)

Special features include commentary, the featurette Young Dogs Learn Old Tricks (HD 02:51), bloopers (HD 02:26), three deleted scenes (HD 03:30), two music videos: "You've Been A Friend To Me" sung by Bryan Adams (HD 02:57) and "Every Little Step" sung by John Travolta and Ella Bleu Travolta (HD 03:33), BD-Live functionality, plus up-front previews.

The 1080p 1.85:1 AVC picture exhibits wonderful color saturation, with rich and deep hues that project warmth throughout. Reds are especially deep and pure, and other colors really pop. Fleshtones are perfectly natural and accurate. At times, though, film saturation is so pushed that blacks are crushed and shadow delineation suffers. This effect is not consistent, and other scenes look perfectly natural and well balanced. Resolution is excellent, with fine facial features and close-up objects nicely detailed. Contrast balance can really look good at times, as well as giving dimensional perspective. This is a pleasant visual experience with striking and vivid colors that brighten and perfectly complement the light storytelling. (Gary Reber)

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is conventionally produced, with heaps of ADR dialogue that is wanting in spatial integration. Otherwise, production sound and ADR are perfectly intelligible. The music score is cartoonish in character, jumping in and out of the soundtrack at a fast pace. The recorded sound quality is excellent, with good spatial width, depth, and clarity in instrument timbre. Except for the music score, and at times atmospheric effects, the frontal soundstage is monaural focused. Occasionally the soundfield is punctuated with directional sound effects. When fully energized, the full orchestral music score permeates the surround channels aggressively and enhances the sense of holosonic® spatial dimension. The most satisfying envelopment is the brief onstage puppet scene, with an aggressive surround presence. Bass energy is solid and deep in the .1 LFE channel when fully energized with the music score. But overall the soundtrack is inconsistent and not particularly distinguished, except for the intermittent moments highlighted by the highly energized and well-recorded music score. (Gary Reber)