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MY DOG SKIP ($25) is a family movie that will appeal to every member of the family, especially those who have ever owned a dog. Based upon Willie Morris’ real life childhood memoir, MY DOG SKIP tells the story of how Willie’s childhood was forever changed, when a lovable dog named Skip entered his life. Growing up during the Second World War was not an easy thing for the introverted Willie. However, Skip had no problem making friends and the dog’s scalability manages to rub off on his young master. MY DOG SKIP is a warm, nostalgic and funny movie that benefits from excellent performances from Frankie Muniz as Willie, Kevin Bacon as his father Jack, Diane Lane as his mother Ellen and Luke Wilson as his older friend Dink, who goes off to fight in the war. The cast of MY DOG SKIP also includes Bradley Coryell, Daylan Honeycutt, Cody Linley, Caitlin Wachs and Harry Connick Jr. as the voice of the narrator.

Warner Home Video has done a truly fine job with their DVD edition of MY DOG SKIP. MY DOG SKIP is offered on a dual sided disc, which gives viewers the choice of full screen and anamorphic enhanced wide screen versions. For the purposes of this review my comments will pertain to the 16:9 enhanced presentation of MY DOG SKIP. MY DOG SKIP is framed at 1.85:1 and the transfer is quite beautiful. The image is crisp, clean and highly detailed. Additionally, colors are very nicely saturated, without displaying any signs of bleeding or other distortion. Blacks are right on the money and the image servers up a healthy dose shadow detail. Digital compression artifacts do not affect the image in any perceivable way. 

The Dolby Digital 5.1 channel soundtrack has a simple, but pleasant mix. Since this is the story of a boy and his dog in small town America during W.W.II, there is very little call for extensive sound effects. The soundstage has a very open, spacious quality that makes subtle use of the discrete channels to create a very natural sonic environment. Dialogue is very clean and very accurately reproduced. There is very little call for the bass channel, but the track does have a rich, full range sound. William Ross’ melodic musical score is nicely integrated into the mix, utilizing all of the discrete channels.A Dolby Digital 5.1 channel French soundtrack is also encoded onto the DVD, as are English and French subtitles.

The interactive menus feature a bit of music, but are otherwise basic in their implementation. Through the menus, one has access to the standard scene selection and set up features, as well as a few supplements. MY DOG SKIP includes two running audio commentaries, one with director Jay Russell and the other featuring star Frankie Muniz and animal trainer Matilda de Cagny. The director’s commentary is definitely the more worthwhile of the two, since it covers the production in greater detail. As for the second commentary track, it is interesting, but peters out after about thirty-three minutes. Other supplements on the DVD include deleted scenes with director’s commentary, a Willie Morris biography and a theatrical trailer.

MY DOG SKIP is a heartwarming family film that I found totally enjoyable. This is a perfect DVD for the kids or anyone who remembers what it was like to be a kid.


My Dog Skip



DVD reviews are Copyright © 2000 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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