Bolt is a CGI-animated movie with a pretty obvious message: learning how to tell the difference between fantasy and reality. That’s what the film’s main title character has to learn the hard way.
Bolt (John Travolta) is a dog whose the star of a hit TV show of the same name where he plays a superhero dog who routinely rescues his owner, Penny (Miley Cyrus) from the villainous Dr. Calico (Malcolm McDowell). However, thanks to the show’s producers, Bolt thinks that the show is real and that he really does have superpowers. When he sees Penny being “kidnapped”, his attempts to rescue her get him accidentally shipped to New York. While the show continues filming with a Bolt lookalike (much to the dismay of a heart-broken Penny), Bolt is determined to get back to Hollywood, recruiting Mittens (Susie Essman), a homeless cat who tries to teach the dog some reality, and Rhino (Mark Walton), a fearless hamster who is a fan of Bolt and also believes the dog is a real superhero. Along the way, Bolt learns the realities of life and what it means to be a regular dog.
This is a fun, interesting movie, sharing similar plot elements to other Disney films like Homeward Bound (and other similar “quest”-type movies) and Toy Story. Especially the latter, as Bolt is somewhat similar to Buzz Lightyear, who also had to learn some harsh lessons of reality. Bolt’s situation, however, could be compared to The Truman Show, in that his life is being manipulated by his show’s producers for the sake of giving the show a more realistic feel. That itself can be a theme of the movie, the extent of what Hollywood and studio executives will do to promote a product and gain publicity. There are plenty of examples of how a show or movie will be hyped up prior to its release, or how the events or antics of various celebrities are continuously talked about in the media. We see it all the time, and Bolt really plays up on it and even shows it in a way everyone, even the younger crowd, can understand.
Of course, the most interesting dynamic are the characters, in particularly Bolt and the new friends he makes on his journey. I mentioned earlier that Bolt is similar to Buzz Lightyear in that he believes he’s a real superhero with actual superpowers. He even manages to come up with a “logical” explanation as to why his powers don’t work when he first arrives in New York (he thinks it’s the foam peanuts in the box he was shipped in, no, really). Mittens and Rhino, of course, provide great counterpoints on the trip. Mittens is the “Woody” to Bolt’s “Buzz”, constantly telling him he’s just a regular dog and not a superhero. Rhino, of course, is the opposite, constantly praising Bolt and pretty much undoing anything Mittens does. It makes for an interesting dynamic, one we have seen before in other films, but is still interesting to watch since we get to see a different take on it.
Bolt is an interesting and entertaining movie that, like a lot of kids’ films, is both fun to watch and provide a message to kids. It may not be an actual superhero movie, but it still has a lot of similar elements, in particular the action scenes. Another one that the whole family can enjoy.
Like many Disney movies, the last thing you really need to worry about is the picture quality. Disney is just total quality usually all over the board. In this case, for this release they did a fine job. The blacks are deep and black whilst there only the very lightest instances of film grain. All in all its just amazing how Disney could take such an old film and present such an enriched look with the colors. Bolt on blu-ray 3d really jumps out at ya’ as one would expect from a dog right? Gotta love how Bolt was able to get a nice 3d effect because of it. Originally a Sony exclusive on 3d, so it’s finally here for all blu-ray 3d lovers to enjoy.
Bolt makes its 2nd blu-ray debut again with a 5.1 DTS HD Master audio track that is far above average, but leaves a little bit to be desired. However this is the review for the blu-ray 3d version, so while the audio may not compete with the likes of Beauty and the Beast it certainly does the job while you’re busy taking in the 3d visuals. Some nice street ambient noise gets action in the rears while the sub gets some action. Of course overall it’s front heavy track and thus your left and right will work the bulk of the load with the center complimenting.
Pretty mucht the same old extras. I’ll give the edition a bit of a nod for including digital copy. All the other 3d releases (released together) didn’t. Also included is the blu-ray and the dvd.
Super Rhino Animated Short
Act, Speak! The Voices of Bolt
Creating the World of Bolt
A New Breed of Directors, A Filmmakers’ Journey
Bolt’s Be-Awesome Mission
I Thought I Lost You music video
In Session With John Travolta and Miley Cyrus
Let’s face it, this should be the final Bolt blu-ray edition you will ever need to buy. Unless of course the release a steelbook and you really love this movie. Regardless, you get the 3d version, dvd, digital copy and regular blu-ray all packed into one whopping edition. The video and audio quality are as good as it needs to be for this title, and you got a host of supplemental features. If you don’t already own this, then grab this edition up and please entire family.