Wow, take a look at the vocal talent that lends a hand to this straight-to-video sequel! As Lilo, you’ve got that child actress next to be exploited by her parents in Dakota Fanning (War of the Worlds). Lilo’s custodian is Nani (Tia Carrere, Wayne’s World). Stitch’s alien friends are voiced by David Ogden Stiers (M*A*S*H*) and Kevin McDonald (The Kids in the Hall). Jason Scott Lee (Dragon) plays Nani’s love interest David.
Maybe I’m surprised that a cast…like this was signed up for such a film of low expectations. Maybe they were all part of the first film and I didn’t know it, because I never saw the first one. Nevertheless, Lilo and Stitch is a cute story about a little girl who finds an alien in her small Hawaiian town, and they become quick friends all the while trying to find inspiration for a Hawaiian hula dance recital she’s a part of. During this time, Stitch starts to malfunction, presumably because it wasn’t created properly, and it needs to be “reformatted”, for lack of a better word, in order to survive.
The film tries to show viewers old Hawaiian traditions of family, generosity and respect, but it’s hard to have that message come through when very WASPy folks like Fanning, Stiers and McDonald are part of the delivery. But as it stands, it’s a pretty innocuous, mildly entertaining film for adults, and the kids will likely enjoy it.
The DVD is supported by a very ambient 5.1 surround mix. This short 70 minute film has a LOT of panning effects that go from front to rear speakers, and some that start on the rears and stay there. It’s much better than this straight to video sequel deserves, and one of the more active tracks I’ve heard recently.
Disney’s animated treatments are much better than run of the mill stuff, and they’ve adapted to DVD technology very well. The film is a mix of computer and real animation, and it’s a nice, colorful presentation of a 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen piece.
These are mostly geared toward the kids. You’ve got a music video from a teen band, a short film featuring the origins of the character, and some set-top games for the kids to enjoy. These are kind of lacking, but not a huge loss.
Definitely a quality pickup to entertain your kids, and enough punch in picture and sound for the adults too. But if you really think Hawaii is that cool, start saving your pennys and get over there to fully enjoy the experience.
Special Features List
- Animated Short
- Set-Top Games
- Music Video