The Pacifier

Cover Art and Menu: 6/10
If I were grading this DVD cover I would give it a solid B-. It’s not as boring as many covers of these family comedies tend to be, and it’s actually quite eye catching. I’ll just admit it, it’s kind of a fun cover for a purely family fun movie. The menu is pretty cool. It’s very Disney for sure, with the flash animation and several direct references to things in the movie.

Extras & Features: 5/10

  • Bloopers – The comedy in the movie comes from the kids, of course and a lot of what goes wrong in shooting different scenes is down to them too, of course. “Never work with kids and animals” someone once said, and with good reason. I wouldn’t to be the director waiting to get something right and hoping the kid in the shot does what they are supposed to on queue, but I sure don’t mind watching them goof up time after time.
  • Deleted Scenes – Nothing of value here, just some cut clips that would have added nothing to the final movie.
  • On the set with Vin Diesel – A short but informative little bit that shows what a nice kid-friendly guy Mr. Diesel really is…awe. What a shocker, he’s not a REAL life action hero who swears and beats people up every two minutes?? I’m shocked!
  • On the set with Brad Garrett – The hilarious brother from Everybody Loves Raymond plays a seriously obnoxious Vice Principal in the movie. At one point he is pitted against Diesel in a wrestling match, but it’s all about the comedy babeeee. This little extra shows the funny man preparing for his scene wearing a very unbecoming wrestling uniform, taunting Vinnie and playing up to the cameras with his oh so fit bod.
  • Director Commentary – I think Disney must train their directors in some kind of seminar in a dark cave in a distant land because they all seem to have a certain quality. They are all about the cookie-cutter mentality of film making. There’s not a lot of creative film making going on here, just the telling of a family friendly story with a big star in the middle of it all. The director is totally into his film, don’t get me wrong, but it sounds more like just a standard directing gig, not the telling of a story that as a director he is passionate about..fair enough.
  • Special Ops TV commercials – blah

The Movie: 6/10:

Wishful thinking: This is a hysterically funny family comedy starring a big action movie star dude.

Reality: This is a big action movie star dude trying to be hysterically funny in a family comedy.

So, there ya go. The truth is this is a fun, semi-funny flick that’s worth a watch if you have kids hanging around. It’s got all the stuff they love like a big tough guy changing diapers. There’s an ear biting attack duck, that should get a few giggles. There’s a very funny young girl who asks the big tough guy why he has boobs, and as we all know, the word “boob” always gets a laugh.

The kids are all good in their roles, especially the teenage girl, Brittany Snow. She has a heart wrenching scene that really surprised me, tucked in the middle of an otherwise fluffy story. Well, as fluffy as a husband/father who is killed leaving 5 kids and a young mother to fend for themselves against a formidable foe. Is it just me, or are Disney movies all obsessed with dead parents? Think about it.

There is the standard montage of Diesel becoming a top notch nanny type guy. There are about four or five official montages actually, but who’s counting? The story is quite boring, predictable, and as far from original as you can get. That would be ok if the dialogue and action were really really really good, but it’s all around the average level. Several lines that the young girl delivers are the funniest in the whole movie, which salvages the film from being a throw away flop. I would recommend it if you like to giggle, smile, and can accept the crappy beginning that lays out a Navy Seal rescue that is so hokey it’s embarrassing.

I liked the movie for what it is, just a feel good story of kid’s being triumphant over the bad guys and learning more about how to be a family. It’s a soft message, yes, but it can’t hurt to inject some of that into our homes now and then.

IT’s not an award winner. It’s not very memorable. It’s not even something I would buy for my own DVD shelf. It is a movie I recommend for parents and kids, or even Diesel fans who will appreciate his attempt at following Schwarzenegger’s steps and branching out beyond the muscle-minded goon characters.

Get ready to just let go and enjoy the sappiness, it won’t hurt ya! It’s great for a weekend afternoon sit down with the kids, some popcorn and maybe Mr. Mom, Mrs. Doubtfire, and Finding Nemo for a proper family film festival. Make it a rainy afternoon, we wouldn’t want the kids sitting around the house on a nice day watching movies, now would we?

Value: 5/10
I’m not fond of a $20.00 price tag for such a middle of the road flick. There aren’t many extras and the movie isn’t that re-watchable if you ask me……then again, I’m not 8 years old 🙂 Hopefully around Christmas time there will be a spot on a bargain shelf for The Pacifier.