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Doctor Dolittle
Eddie Murphy stars as the man who can talk with the animals.

Starring Eddie Murphy, Ossie Davis, Oliver Platt...  View more >

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Reviews Summary


Please Note: Reader Reviews are submitted by the readers of The BigScreen Cinema Guide and represent their own personal opinions regarding this movie, and do not represent the views of The BigScreen Cinema Guide, or any of its associated entities.

[--- Wait for Rental ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
Perhaps the words "Eddie Murphy" and "Family Comedy" should have about a 15 mile restraining order between them. Murphy likes to be sick, hey, its fun for him, but when the subject of this movie, "Doctor Dolittle", is cute animals in various sizes, kids will want to see it. And will kids understand all the rectal and body humour going on?

Directed in a cheap looking style by Betty Thomas, the movie is alternately hilarious and gross-out. Murphy is Dolittle, a doctor who has the gift to talk to animals since birth. He was always talking to his pet dog, getting advice from it. (Asked why dogs sniff each other's rears, the dog replies "That's just our way of shaking each other's hand") After getting into trouble when he sniffs the principal's rear, an exorcist wrestles the animal-talking demon out of him (I wish I saw more of that young Doolittle, he seems like a really good actor), Dolittle never talks to animals again.

Cut to present day, and he still hasn't talked to animals. He has a beautiful family and a doctor job. One night while driving home, he swipes a dog. When the dog comes to, he says "Way to go bonehead, why don't you watch where you are going next time". Slowly, all the animals around him start talking to Dolittle, since he can understand what they say. (A: how did the animals learn english, and B: why do their lips move only to Dolittle and no one else? Do no humans look at an animal's mouth?)

There's really no plot in this movie, just a bunch of scenes that have animals with a sickness that Dolittle can remedy. The major scenes of the movie include a suicidal tiger who must have surgery, that dog that got hit by Dolittle (wonderfully voiced by Norm MacDonald, who I just saw in "Dirty Work") who becomes Lucky, the family pet, and a guinea pig (voiced, almost unrecognizably, by Chris Rock) who provides all the comic relief. Oh, and let's not forget the humans, who think Dolittle isa complete nut.

I kind of liked this movie; there were a lot of areas where the movie could have taken off, and it never did. The movie was a little bit like "Flubber" (except for the wonderful sound design), where a family movie has a substantial amount of long, talky scenes, which would bore the life out of the children attending. The animals are very cute and very funny, although none of them, except for Lucky;MacDonald's voice is BORN with character. You find yourself laughing constantly at the animals talking, even though you still wonder where they administered that kind of dialouge.

And last but not least, Mr. Eddie Murphy. After wowing me with "The Nutty Professor" and satisfying with a good action hero in "Metro", Murphy falls flat again. What was Thomas thinking by not letting him "go" like other movies are supposed to let him do? Here he is too confined to the plot, not being able to explode onto the screen. Here he is a flat stick character; someone like Chris Rock or even Chris Tucker could have taken this role and it wouldn't have made a difference. Oh well. I should be used to the fact now that Hollywood scripts can destroy an actor.

Grade: C+

Tech Review:

Picture: 4.5 The picture is glorious, with fine colors, excellent black level and good contrast; just some scenes have lots of film grain on it. The X-Files should have had this kind of film stock.

Sound: 4 The DTS mix of the film is very good, even though this is a comedy, the sound effects project nice and wide over the front channels and even sometimes into the split surrounds. The music score is nicely recorded, but monoish sounding. Dialouge sounds fine.

Photography: 1 The film is horribly matted to 1.85:1, I believe the film was misframed in the theater I watched it in. The photography was nuts, every shot made no sense. Although this isn't as bad as James L. Brook's "As Good As It Gets" 1.85:1.

Length: 85 minutes. Fox. jwhyte2@hotmail.com ICQ- 4339199

[--- Wait for Rental ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
This was an "OK" movie. Overall, not very good, but it had some good moments. My main problem is that some of the humor is raunchy (probably why it's a PG-13) and the rest is at the level of an 8 to 10 year old boy. I'd recommend renting so you can do other stuff when it gets boring.

[--- Good ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
In my opinion, I liked the film. It was really funny and it was worth the ticket. Eddie Murphy played as a doctor who can talk to the animals. The animals are so cute and funny. I like the part when Doctor Dolittle give a mouse mouth to mouth.

Rating:***

[--- Good ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
Being easily influenced by certain reviewers, i.e., the Batman & Robin of the Cinema Critique set in particular (Siskel & Ebert), I was not in a frenzy to see the show. (The reviewers split) However, my curiosity was tweaked by a variety of "behind-the-scenes" and special effects specials on television. And I am here to tell you, go see it. And if you have middle school kids - take them, too! Sure, you could wait until video release if there's too much on your agenda to take it in the theater, but see it. So it's blatantly sappy about the "be true to yourself" message ... I'm not sure that's all bad in this world where blatant willingness to violence is less criticized in movies! Yes, flatulence jokes abound, and the "rear" focus is obvious. But it's a movie and movies are suppose to entertain on some level and I believe this movie will entertain. Don't avoid it because of low stars or some critics' jaded words ... it's an afternoon of small chuckles and the work with animals overall is worth a visit. I mean with lines like, "What's your name anyway?" (to the Heinz 57 mutt Murphy has retrieved from the pound), to which the hound replies, "Well, a little girl called me 'Mama-not-that-dog' once." you may resort to a low level groan, but I am telling you, you will smile once or twice in the dark!

[--- Good ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
This movie is worth seeing if your in the mood for a lighthearted way to spend a couple of hours. Taken for what it is, a remake of an old film it is enjoyable. Granted a couple of lines may be inappropriate for smaller kids, but that's why it's PG-13. Don't go to this movie expecting to see an Eddie Murphy role like The Nutty Proffesor, it's not that type of movie. Taken at face value, it is a movie with good humour from the animals that you can't take too serious. Let's face it, if you go to a movie to analyze every nook and cranny of the film, then you won't enjoy this one at all. However, if your like me and take it for what it is, a movie, then you will enjoy yourself. Overall, I would say, see this film if you can just sit back and watch without reading more into it than is there, it's a cute film.

[--- See Now! ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
A must see for the entire family. Funny Funny Funny. I had hard time hearing some of the lines because of Fatman's loud laughter and popcorn shower. Nice story, Great effects, Kids ma dad and grandpa, and talking animals. If you've got kids see the earlier shows, it is cheaper and you will avoid the very loud teen crowd with their feet hanging all over the seats, who mistake the cinema with their living room.

FATman and baldGUY

[--- Good ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
I just came back from the west coast and had a chance to take my three year old niece and my 82 year old mom out to see a movie. I hadn't heard too much about this one and hadn't read anybody's reviews(having been away from my computer). I thought the idea of Eddie Murphy and wisecracking animals might work for all of us, and it did. I heard my mom laughing and Christina liked the hamster the best(that's the one with Chris Rock stuffed in it's head). There aren't too many off color jokes, at least I never felt embarressed to be there with my mother and I didn't mind the fart jokes. I hope the kids get them early in life and get over it. I know too many middle-aged men that think farting in public is hilarious. Probably because they were brought up by prudish and oppressive parents. Anyway, it's worth a matinee with the kids. Have some quality time and if that doesn't work, just cut one. The family will appreciate you even more.

[--- Stay Away! ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
I think it´s sad that Eddie Murphy still does movies like this. He was good in the eighties with movies like "Beverly Hills cop", "48 hrs" and "Coming to America".

But now he has stuck in some horny comedy genre, its sad i must say. After terrible movies like "Boomerang", "The nutty profesor" and now this.

Eddie, please come back, while you have the chance!

[--- Good ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
Dr. Doolittle was a pretty good movie. There were a lot of pretty good jokes and the amimal voices were very clever. When it came to drama you just did not care to much about the charactors.

The best thing about the movie would be the aniamals and their personalities. One bad thing about it was that it did not have to great of a plot even though the idea the movie was based on was very good. they could have had some better stuff happen with the animals. I would want to talk to animals wouldn't you?

You should probably go see it because it is a fairly entertaining movie.

[--- Wait for Rental ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
I heard this movie described as "Babe meets The Nutty Professor." That’s an insult to both of those four star films. One major problem was the two main animals, annoyingly voiced by Norm McDonald and Chris Rock. Ugh! Then there’s the unfunny potty humor haplessly inserted in this "warm and fuzzy" film. It’s as if the filmmakers couldn’t decide who to make Dr. Dolittle for, and it doesn’t work on either level. BTW, what’s with the movie references to Austin Powers, The Usual Suspects, and Sling Blade? Wow, is that out of place! (Note: Credit for the phrase "warm and fuzzy" goes to Mark Ross).

10-point scale rating: 4

[--- Good ---]by  
Jan 25, 2000
What can i say about this, it's a kiddy movie that is actually good, i took my little brother to see it and he loved it. It has a simple plot, Eddie Murphy plays a natty physician who's none too thrilled to find that he has the ability to talk to animals, one of it's high points is that it keeps indulgence at bay in even the coarsest of comic situations. The beginning shows you young Dolittle talking to his spires like Lassie dog, the voice of Ellen Degeneres, he asks "Why do dogs sniff each other?" she replies "It's our way of saying hello." The next scene shows him sniffing his principal's butt and asks " How are ya." This gets his dad very upset, so he calls an excorsist to take the demons out of the boy. 20 years later he is a mature man and has lost his ability to talk to the animals, until he bumps his head in a car jolt. there are a few celebrity voices by Norm McDonald, and Chris Rock as Rodney the guinny pig.

Oliver Platt plays a greedy doctor whom workd with Murphy and wants to sign a deal with a corporation that will get them both millions, but Murphy is not sure yet. There is also the manic depressive tiger who needs surgery, and the drunk french monkey, with many more talking animals whom can get a few belly laughs out of you.

GRADE: B

Oct 5, 2003
Eddie Murphy can't save "Doctor Dolittle." The film has a lot of foul mouth lines coming from the animals and the film is marketing for families. Those animals may have come from the rap party for "Babe." But never mind "Doctor Dolittle" didn't have enough stuff for a recommedition. If Rex harrison had to deal with his foul-mouth animals, he grab his bag and head home.

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