The Screening Room
THE STUDIO GATE
It's really hard to go wrong with images of puppies in a kid's movie. "Space
Buddies" might not be considered a canine charmer like "Benji" or "Marley &
Me" (sans the sadness), but it's enjoyable entertainment for the kids.
"Space Buddies" is now on DVD and Blu-ray disc. This review is on the DVD.
Writer/director Robert Vince has spun a charming tale of the Buddies in
space. All the cute canines are back including Mudbud, B-Dawg, Rosebud,
Buddha, & Budderball. A new dog, Russian "Dogmonaught" Spudnick, is on-board
for this adventure.
Although there have been other movies previously made in the "Air Bud"
series, "Space Buddies" has a better script, relies less on sappiness, has
some good visual effects and production value. Making the puppies talk, even
if the script is predictable, is almost guarenteed to get a kid's attention.
By using good voice casting, Vince was able to take this movie to another
level. Jason Earles, better known for his role as Jackson on "Hannah
Montana," nicely voices Spudnick. Child actors Josh Flitter, Lilliana Mumy,
Henry Hodges, Skyler Gisondo, and Field Cate round out the Buddy voices and
do a respectable job.
The pups, like they usually do, get into mischief. This time, it's getting
onto a rocket ship and blasting off to meet a Russian Cosmonaught (Diedrich
Bader), and eventually walk on the moon.
The visual effects are pretty well done considering the movie probably
didn't have a huge budget. Disney is probably making some nice change on the
whole "Buddies" concept, so they probably gave the filmmakers something to
work with and it shows. It's a handsomely made production and director Vince
seems comforable with working with kids and animals. That is no easy task.
These movies don't have deep meaning about people and dogs, nor are they
about pulling tears out of your eyes. They're kid's entertainment and meant
to play cute on DVD. "Space Buddies" takes a slightly different route by
leaning less on cute kids and more on the puppies. That's a refreshing
change from the melodrama of the last "Buddies" movie, "Air Buddies" (2006).
"Space Buddies" ain't rocket science, but it's hard to resist the little
Special thanks to Click Communications
Photos: © BVHE. All
DVD Quick Glimpse
Cute enough to watch with the kids
Director: Robert Vince
Cast: Diedrich Bader, Josh Flitter, Lilliana
Mumy, Henry Hodges, Skyler Gisondo, and Field
Music video by Alyson Stoner and more
Picture: Very Good
Sound: Very Good
Aspect Ratio (1.78.1)
Dolby Digital 5.1
DVD RELEASE DATE
February 3, 2009