12 January 2008 | Electrified_Voltage
1998's "Doctor Dolittle" is nothing special, but this sequel is inferior
A few months ago, I saw "Doctor Dolittle" (the 1998 remake) for the first time in years. I liked it when I was twelve years old, so I was curious to know what I would think after growing up, despite having low expectations. My expectations were surpassed slightly, but if I had never seen "Dr. Dolittle 2" before, its predecessor wouldn't have been enough to make me interested in seeing it, but I did see it about four years ago, and enjoyed it. I was seventeen, past this movie's targeted audience, but didn't tend to watch a lot of movies at the time. I just watched this sequel again, and my once again low expectations were not surpassed at all.
Dr. John Dolittle has become famous for his ability to communicate with animals, but lately, he has also been having trouble with his family. One day, he is brought to the forest to see the Godbeaver, and learns that the forest is rapidly being cut down. The animals who live in this forest are counting on Dr. Dolittle to save their habitat, and in order to do so, the doctor must attempt to get a female Pacific Western bear in the forest named Ava together with a male so he can save the species! He gets a male bear of this species named Archie from a circus, and begins his attempt to get him adjusted to life in the wild and teach him how to win Ava's heart, both of which are easier said than done! It doesn't help that Archie has to compete with a Kodiak bear named Sonny, and logging company owner Joe Potter is determined to get his way!
Although I found no huge laughs in "Doctor Dolittle", I did find some minor ones. However, in this sequel, I found none. I smiled at times, but VERY rarely and briefly. Like its predecessor, "Dr. Dolittle 2" contains some juvenile excretion jokes, though it is a TAD cleaner, for better or worse (since it was aimed at kids, many would probably say it's for the better). These jokes are usually lame, if not always, a good example being the scene where Archie has diarrhea. There are also some embarrassing lines in the script, such as the one Dr. Dolittle has, humiliating his daughter, Charisse by telling her boyfriend how she tried to get out of diapers early and made messes around the house. Fortunately, the movie isn't totally filled with these problems, but most of the film is basically average and forgettable in my book.
Both Dr. Dolittle films starring Eddie Murphy are rather cheesy, and would definitely appeal to kids more than anyone else, but this one more so than the original. If you don't like the 1998 film, then you probably wouldn't like this one, either, but if you do, then you STILL might not like this sequel. "Dr. Dolittle 2" may have a slightly better plot than its predecessor, but overall, it is inferior, not that I'm saying the original is really that good. If you ask me, 1998's "Doctor Dolittle" is very close to being strictly for kids, and this sequel is right there. Remembering the film's targeted audience, I guess it deserves some credit, but if you're not part of that audience, and are not a parent of anyone who is, I wouldn't say there's any need to bother. After watching this, I definitely won't be watching the straight-to-video "Dr. Dolittle 3".