DVD Movie Guide @ dvdmg.com
Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main


Aaron Woodley
Jeremy Renner, Heidi Klum, Alec Baldwin
Writing Credits:
Bob Barlen, Cal Brunker, Aaron Woodley

An Arctic fox works in the mailroom of a package delivery service, but wants to be doing the deliveries.

Rated PG.

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 92 min.
Price: $22.99
Release Date: 2/4/2020

• Previews
• DVD Copy


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Arctic Dogs [Blu-Ray] (2019)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (January 28, 2020)

Occasionally I opine that family-oriented animated films exist as a license to print money. Occasionally – often? – I found myself proven wrong.

Such became the case with 2019’s Arctic Dogs. Despite a star-studded cast and an appealing early Thanksgiving release date, the film utterly flopped.

Dogs opened on a sizable 2844 screens in the US but took in a total of less than $6 million total for its run. In contrast, Frozen II made seven times as much on its first day alone.

Of course, we expect a Disney-produced sequel to a huge hit to do well, but still, Dogs can’t be seen as anything other than a massive commercial dud.

Set in the Arctic – duh! – Swifty the Arctic Fox (voiced by Jeremy Renner) works in the mailroom for a delivery company. However, he dreams of a promotion to “Top Dog”, a job as a courier.

To prove his merit, Swifty package-naps a delivery, one that sends him to a mysterious location. There he discovers a nefarious plot to melt the Arctic.

With this information in tow, Swifty amasses his friends to stop the plan. This puts Swifty and company up against evil Otto Van Walrus (John Cleese) as they attempt to save the Arctic.

Huh – no heavy-handed environmental message there! Admittedly, I agree with the point the movie wants to make, but that doesn’t negate the way in which Dogs lacks subtlety.

Of course, we find a movie made for kids, so perhaps one can understand the lack of nuance. However, even this blatant message won’t impact the target audience, as they’ll lack the broader comprehension of climate change issues. This means the basic social commentary ends up as less than useful.

Beyond these elements, Dogs sputters simply because it provides a wholly mediocre animated tale. Only one aspect of the film stands out as impressive: its voice cast.

We really do get a solid group of performers here. In addition to Renner and Cleese, we find talent like Alec Baldwin, James Franco, Anjelica Huston and others.

Alas, their lackluster performances match their generic characters. While none of the actors embarrass themselves, none find much spark or spirit in their roles.

As implied, some of that stems from the basic blandness of the parts and the story. Dogs consistently feels like Generic Animated Entertainment, and nothing about it ever threatens to impress.

It doesn’t help that the movie struggles to fill its 92 minutes. The plot moves oddly slowly, as Swifty doesn’t even make his initial delivery until about 20 minutes into the tale.

Matters don’t really kick into higher gear at that point, as the narrative continues to dawdle. Even the big “action spectacular” finale feels sluggish and uncommitted.

To be fair, you can find family flicks much worse than Dogs, as it never becomes painful to watch. However, it fails to find much purpose or entertainment value.

The Disc Grades: Picture B/ Audio B/ Bonus D-

Arctic Dogs appears in an aspect ratio of 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a good but unexceptional image.

Sharpness became the main concern, as the movie looked a little soft at times. Most of the film offered good delineation, but it veered toward mildly fuzzy on occasion, a departure from the crystal-clear definition usually found from computer animated efforts.

I saw no shimmering or jaggies, and edge haloes remained absent. The flick also lacked any print flaws.

Given the Arctic orientation, blue became the movie’s dominant hue, though some of the animals and interiors offered more dynamic tones. These appeared fairly rich given design choices.

Blacks seemed dark and deep, while shadows appeared smooth and clear. Mainly due to the mild softness, this was a “B”-level presentation.

At least the movie’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack came with some zing at times. The various action beats managed to open up the soundscape in a reasonably satisfying manner, as those used the various channels to a positive degree.

Though these didn’t crop up frequently, they still brought out a nice sense of setting, and extreme weather could add some pizzazz. Despite the lack of consistent activity, the mix broadened enough to form a satisfactory soundfield.

Audio quality seemed good. Speech was distinctive and natural, without edginess or other issues.

Music was perky and full, while effects appeared accurate and packed a nice punch. This felt like a “B” mix.

The disc opens with an ad for Bernie the Dolphin 2. No trailer for Dogs - or any other extras – appear here.

A second disc provides a DVD copy of Dogs. It also lacks extras.

Given the presence of a good voice cast, one might hope to find a minor gem via Arctic Dogs. Unfortunately, the film itself seems slow and banal, without much to make it impressive to the viewer. The Blu-ray brings generally positive picture and audio but we locate no real bonus materials. This winds up as forgettable family fare.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
0 3:
View Averages for all rated titles.

Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main