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Dr. Dolittle 2

movie reviewmovie review out of 4 Movie Review: Dr. Dolittle 2

Starring: Eddie Murphy, Kristen Wilson
Director: Steve Carr
Rated: PG
RunTime: 90 Minutes
Release Date: June 2001
Genres: Comedy, Kids

Review by Susan Granger
2½ stars out of 4

When I took a seven year-old and a ten year-old to see Eddie Murphy, once again, play Dr. John Dolittle, they loved it. And why not? Filled a merry menagerie, including his faithful dog Lucky (voiced by Norm Macdonald), plus lots of fart and poop jokes, it's aimed directly at pre-teens. The story begins in Dr. Dolittle's San Francisco clinic where, after hours, he conducts a group therapy session for strays, assuring them, "Every dog can find a family and be someone's best friend." But his healer-who-talks-with-animals routine is interrupted by a summons to meet the Mafia-connected Mr. Beaver (voiced by Richard C. Sarafian). It seems the little critters need his help to save their forest that's being threatened by an evil logger (Jeffrey Jones) and his lawyer (Kevin Pollak). So Mrs. Dolittle (Kristen Wilson), a lawyer, gets an injunction, pleading that the forest is home to the last Pacific Western bear, an endangered species. The catch is that Dolittle must play match-maker for the bear, named Ava (voiced by Lisa Kudrow), pairing her with Archie (voiced by Steve Zahn), a circus-trained bear, who has no desire to live in the wild. "Winnie the Who?" Dolittle cajoles, appealing to his vanity. "You'll be famous!" But once Archie gets a look at Ava, he changes his tune to "I Will Survive" and tries to win her affections from a rival Kodiak bear. Written by Larry Levin and directed by Steve Carr, Dolittle's survival-training with Archie provides plenty of laughs, as does the subsequent world-wide Animal Strike. There's also a dreary romantic subplot involving Dolittle's petulant 16 year-old daughter (Raven-Symone) and her pizza-delivery boy-friend (Lil' Zane). On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Dr. Dolittle 2" is a sweet-natured 6. It's an amiable, big-screen sit-com that's not hard to bear.

Copyright 2001 Susan Granger

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