- Direct-to-video Disney films are sketchy at best, uninspired and slap-shod money-makers at worst (though The Lion King 1 1/2 was a pleasant exception).
- The last entry we watched in the Lilo & Stitch film series, 2003’s Stitch! The Movie, was absolutely awful – nearly killing the fun memories of the 2002 original film.
Since rounding up all 625 of Dr. Jumba's genetically engineered experiments in Stitch! The Movie, Lilo (Daveigh Chase), Stitch (Chris Sanders), Pleakley (Kevin McDonald) and Jumba (David Ogden Stiers) are enjoying separate vacations in the far corners of space. But when evil Dr. Hamsterviel (Jeff Bennett) returns, forces Jumba to create Stitch's evil twin (a creature he names Leroy), and plans to clone Leroy into an unstoppable army, it's up to Lilo to reunite the gang and save the day.
Leroy & Stitch is pretty quiet until Dr. Hamsterviel arrives, things pick up once he creates the powerful and destructive Leroy. In fact, the battles between Stitch and Leroy are actually exciting and really well-choreographed.
There are a decent amount of one-liners for the grown-ups; a climactic battle featuring Stitch and the “good” aliens versus an army of Leroys; and a great, inspired closing scene that pays tribute to Lilo’s hero, Elvis Presley.
The creative team of Tony Craig, Roberts Gannaway, and Jess Winfield (responsible for the aforementioned, lackluster Stitch! The Movie) have redeemed themselves with Leroy & Stitch. While it may not go down as a classic in the Disney pantheon, it’s an enjoyable and easily digestible 73 minutes of fun for kids and parents alike.
Rating:Leroy & Stitch, earning it repeat viewings over the weekend after this airing on Friday night. Despite a slow start, the action and antics kept them entertained – the capper being (gross-out alert) when Leroy picks his nose with his tongue.
Will your kids like it?Kids under ten will probably enjoy Leroy & Stitch. And despite Leroy’s tricky nose-picking, there’s no content that’s inappropriate or scary for toddlers or pre-schoolers.
Will your FilmMother want to watch it?Leroy & Stitch will probably fall somewhere between “enduring it” and “liking it” – fun to watch with the kids, but not something she’d seek out on her own.
Leroy & Stitch
* Directors: Tony Craig, Roberts Gannaway
* Screenwriters: Roberts Gannaway, Jess Winfield
* Stars: Daveigh Chase, Chris Sanders, Kevin McDonald, David Ogden Stiers, Jeff Bennett
* MPAA Rating: G
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