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MY DOG SKIP ($20) 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 made MY DOG SKIP available on Blu-ray Disc in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio presentation that has been encoded onto the disc with the VC-1 codec. The 1080p presentation is nice, but is not what one would call demo material. MY DOG SKIP has a mildly soft appearance that seems appropriate to the period setting and nostalgic stylings of the cinematography. Colors have good saturation, by come across with a somewhat warm but, slightly antiqued quality. Blacks are fairly deep, while the whites appear crisp. Contrast is relatively smooth, while shadow detail is more than adequate. The elements from which MY DOG SKIP has been mastered appear quite clean. Film grain is fairly minimal.

MY DOG SKIP is presented on Blu-ray Disc with a 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. Overall, this is a very nice upgrade over the lossy DVD sound that strengthens the best qualities of the earlier release, but is free from any of its weaknesses. The soundstage has a very open, spacious quality that makes subtle use of the discrete channels to create a very natural sonic environment. 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. Thanks to the lossless encode, William Ross’ melodic score is conveyed with wonderful musicality and emotional depth. Voices are warmly recorded, plus the dialogue is always completely understandable. A French Dolby Digital 5.1 channel soundtrack is also encoded onto the disc, as are English, French and Spanish subtitles.

The interactive menus allow one access to the standard scene selection and set up features, as well as some extras that have been ported from the DVD release. Starting things off are two running Audio Commentaries included on the Blu-ray Disc; the first is with director Jay Russell, while the second includes 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. Next are Deleted Scenes with director’s commentary. A Theatrical Trailer closes out the extras.

MY DOG SKIP is a totally delightful and heartwarming family film. The Blu-ray presentation offers a nice upgrade over DVD. Recommended.


My Dog Skip [Blu-ray] (2000)


DVD & Blu-ray Disc reviews are Copyright 2011 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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