Beverly Hills Chihuahua (2008)

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Released 6-May-2009

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Family Main Menu Audio
Featurette-Legend of the Chihuahua
Deleted Scenes
Outtakes
Audio Commentary-Director
Rating Rated G
Year Of Production 2008
Running Time 87:46
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (53:20) Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Programme
Region Coding 4 Directed By Raja Gosnell
Studio
Distributor

Walt Disney Studios Home Ent.
Starring Drew Barrymore
Piper Perabo
Andy Garcia
George Lopez
Cheech Marin
Paul Rodriguez
Plácido Domingo
Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI ? Music Heitor Pereira


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Polish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Hungarian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Czech Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Russian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 1.0 (112Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Hungarian
Czech
English for the Hearing Impaired
Polish
Russian
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement Yes
Action In or After Credits Yes

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Chloe (voiced by Drew Barrymore), a spoilt Chihuahua, belongs to a rich cosmetics mogul (Jamie Lee Curtis) who treats her as a surrogate child. She wears the finest in designer doggy clothes and hangs out with the finest of socialite puppies. Her life is thrown upside down when mummy has to take an emergency business trip and leaves her flaky niece Rachel (Piper Perabo) to dog-sit.

    Rachel foolishly takes Chloe on holiday to Mexico, where she is dog-napped by sinister crooks running a dog-fighting ring. With the aid of a German Shepherd named Delgado (voiced by Andy Garcia), Chloe sets out across Mexico to find her way home, all the way hunted by the evil dog Diablo (voiced by Edward James Olmos), as Rachel and Papi (voiced by George Lopez), a working-class Chihuahua who is in love with Chloe, mount a rescue operation for her. Along the way Chloe discovers her heritage and learns to stick up for herself.

    Beverly Hills Chihuahua is a real surprise. The concept might sound like it is for the dogs, but the film itself trots out Disney's well-worn live action family formula in a manner that makes it still seem fresh. This is very much the Disney style that kept Wonderful World of Disney running for so long on TV screens, updated for modern kids. The movie is consistently amusing and occasionally laugh-out-loud funny. Kids will love the doggies.

    Beverly Hills Chihuahua is definitely recommended for a family audience and anyone that misses the good old days!

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The film is presented in its original 2.35:1 theatrical aspect ratio and is 16x9 enhanced.

    The video is clear and sharp. The image features good black levels and an excellent amount of shadow detail. The colour palette is bold and vibrant.

    There are no noticeable detrimental artefacts in the video. A mild level of grain is present in the image, slightly more so in darker scenes, though it is not distracting.

    The disc features both English and English for the Hearing Impaired subtitles. Based on the portion I sampled, both streams appear to be accurate and well timed.

    This is a RSDL disc. The layer break occurs unnoticeably between scenes at 53:20.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The film features two English audio tracks, one Dolby Digital 5.1 (384 Kbps) and the other Dolby Digital 2.0 (192 Kbps). It also includes Polish, Czech, Hungarian and Russian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192 Kbps) tracks and a mono, 1.0 English audio commentary.

    The audio sounds reasonable, despite its low bitrate. The dialogue is clear and reasonably easy to understand, despite a lot of corny South American accents, and there are no problems with audio sync.

    The film features a vibrant Latin guitar-themed score from Simply Red's Heitor Pereira that compliments the mood of the film.

    The surrounds are put to reasonable use and create an immersive environment by making good use of directional echo and reverb. The subwoofer is not used nearly as effectively as the surrounds.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Disney Fastplay

    Rather than opening to a regular DVD menu this disc boasts to have "Disney Fastplay", diving straight to the feature after some trailers, however the disc manages to sabotage the intended effect of kids not needing to touch the remote by forcing language selection before anything happens!

Legend of the Chihuahua Featurette (3:01)

    A short animated (Flash style) history of the Chihuahua breed. Half truth, half nonsense, surprisingly entertaining.

Deleted Scenes (9:33)

    An interesting bag of deleted scenes. Interesting for two reasons, one being that the scenes expose the process of animating the dogs lip movements somewhat (being a mixture of pre-CGI, partially CGI'd and wholly CGI'd footage) and secondly because they expose a plot thread that was dropped form the film (largely because it complicated the story).

Bloopers (3:00)

    Three minutes of mostly canine-related bloopers.

Audio Commentary with Director Raja Gosnell

    Director Raja Gosnell provides a stating-the-bleeding-obvious type of commentary. The interesting bits are lost amidst the guff in this case and it makes for a dull listen.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    The Region 4 and Region 1 releases differ only in the audio tracks provided for the feature. The Region 1 edition missing out on the European language tracks found on the Region 4 edition.

Summary

    Beverly Hills Chihuahua is a real surprise and one of the rare talking dog comedies worth a watch.

    The video and audio presentation are both solid. The disc features a reasonable range of decent extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Adam Gould (Totally Biolicious!)
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Review Equipment
DVDSony Playstation 3, using HDMI output
Display Samsung 116cm LA46M81BD. Calibrated with THX Optimizer. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL).
Audio DecoderPioneer VSX2016AVS. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX2016AVS
Speakers150W DTX front speakers, 100W centre and 4 surround/rear speakers, 12 inch PSB Image 6i powered sub

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