Directed by Stephen Gaghan
Starring Robert Downey Jr., Antonio Banderas, Michael Sheen and Jessie Buckley
By Tim Basaraba
Could Robert Downey Junior shake the Tony Stark typecast in his latest lead role, as Dr. John Doolittle?
Over the past eleven years, we’ve dutifully gone to theaters to watch what some people call a D-List Marvel character (even though he’s more of a second tier “B-lister,” but whatever you no comic reading normal) and, much like Christopher Reeves as Superman, RDJ has become synonymous with the character. So much so, that it may take twenty years before another actor attempts to don the Iron Man suit.
On paper it makes sense: Avengers End Game was heavy and Iron Man died saving the universe. What better way to redefine one’s self than by playing a happy go lucky mad scientist who talks to animals in a period piece adventure film?
Unfortunately, RDJ’s moment of redefinition in Stephen Gaghan’s Doolittle is burdened by both sloppy conception and execution. In regard to execution, I for one could not understand at least half of the words spoken by our lead. This was not only due to the thick Welsh accent, but because he delivered his lines with a mumble/whisper. If you take away all the corny lines recited by the animals, or the over-the-top CGI action scenes, you still have at its core an a film that you cant understand the lead actor…which is both odd and not very enjoyable.
What’s with this trend of recycling old IP right now anyhow? Was anyone begging for this adaptation in the first place? I don’t think so, and the same goes for Peter Pan, Snow White and the Lone Ranger. Stop with these fresh takes on antiquated tales! A little homage to the past is always nice, but I am ready for some new, original stories.
OK. Rant over. This film is terrible. So terrible I bet young children will even hate it. Seriously, they will look at their parents and say, “Can we just watch Paw Patrol?”
If Iron Man is an A, and previous tellings of Dr. Doolittle have been C’s and D’s, then this new version is an F