There once was a time when you could count on nearly any film made by Walt Disney Pictures to be a sure thing for solid family entertainment, back in the day when Lady and the Tramp and Fox and the Hound came to life. Now Disney produces nearly any project regardless of how contrived, dull, and unclever the script may be. Beverly Hills Chihuahua welcomes itself to the list of disposable talking dog Disney films that include Underdog and The Shaggy Dog remake.
After being left in the hands of her owner Viv’s (Jamie Lee Curtis) niece, a snooty Beverly Hills Chihuahua by the name of Chloe (Drew Berrymore) gets lost while on vacation to Mexico and in the process becomes dognapped for ransom. Papi (George Lopez), a determined Chihuahua in love with Chloe, decides to trace the steps of his love and hopefully rescue her from the dognapper and a secluded German shepherd (Andy Garcia) he is concerned about.
Kids might enjoy the talking dogs (let’s face it, they can be easy to please), but even dog lovers are snubbed of their high hopes that cuteness is amidst. Unfortunately, what was once cute becomes sappy in this fish out of water tale involving an over-pampered, stuck-up, light-skinned Beverly Hills Chihuahua who gets lost in suburban Mexico.
In short supply of character development and character interaction, Beverly Hills Chihuahua is very superficial. First time feature film screenwriters Analisa LaBianco and Jeffrey Bushell’s lackluster script and Raja Gosnell’s horrible execution leaves Beverly Hills Chihuahua a mere notch above its atrocious trailer.
Among the nearly nonexistent supply of amusement Beverly Hills Chihuahua dishes out in its 91 minute run time are Drew Barrymore’s innocent voice and Latino vocals by George Lopez, Luis Guzmán, Andy Garcia, and Paul Rodriguez. Aside from providing a first fifteen minutes that seem almost tolerable, you’re given nothing more than cut-rate CGI lip-assisting laced with a downpour of inoffensive stereotypes.
Sure, it’s harmless, but also entirely unnecessary. You don’t come to expect much from a film entitled Beverly Hills Chihuahua — it’s obviously not out for any awards. But the formulaic route and lack of creativity makes it just another Disney stinker and more than likely it will be forgotten in the process of viewing.
Included in the special features section of the DVD are three deleted scenes with introductions by director Raja Gosnell, a blooper reel titled “Blooper Scooper,” a silly yet mildly informative animated short titled “Legend of the Chihuahua,” and an audio commentary track by director Gosnell.