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The Essential Guide to Bristol
12 February 2009
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Bolt (3D) (PG)

The ViewBristol Review

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Review byMatthew Turner05/02/2009

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 96 mins

Enjoyable animated adventure with likeable characters, impressive 3D effects (in selected cinemas) and a witty, Truman Show-inspired script.

What's it all about?
Hollywood pooch Bolt (voiced by John Travolta) is the star of his own TV show, where he plays a superdog who fights sinister organisations, alongside his owner and co-star, Penny (Miley Cyrus). However, Bolt has been raised on the studio lot and believes that his superpowers are real, thanks to a Truman Show-style deception on the part of the producers.

When an episode ends with Penny being kidnapped, Bolt escapes from his trailer and sets out to rescue her, but he ends up being accidentally couriered to New York instead. Believing his superpowers to be on the fritz, he enlists the reluctant help of abandoned housecat Mittens (Susie Essman) and his own starstruck superfan, Rhino the hamster (Mark Walton), to help him cross the country and rescue Penny.

The Good
It seems you can't move for doggie-themed adventures in the cinema at the moment, what with Beverly Hills Chihuahua, Bolt and the upcoming Hotel for Dogs. Happily, this is by some way the best of them, with a witty script that caters to both adults and children.

The characters are well drawn and extremely likeable - Rhino and Mittens basically steal every scene they're in and there are some amusing supporting turns by various pigeons. Similarly, the animation is as good as you would expect from Disney, even if it's not quite up there with Pixar's greatest hits (despite the presence of exec producer John Lasseter).

The Great
There are some terrific gags and co-directors Chris Williams and Byron Howard keep things moving at a decent pace, even throwing in subtle references to things like The 39 Steps (Mittens is essentially handcuffed to Bolt for much of the journey). It's also worth trying to catch the film in 3D, if you can, though more for the 3D environments rather than any specific moments.

Worth seeing?
Bolt (3D) is an enjoyable, sharply animated and frequently witty adventure that will please both adults and children alike.

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Bolt (3D) (PG)
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