Dora and the Lost City of Gold


Directed By: James Bobin
Starring: Isabela Moner, Jeff Wahlberg, Eva Longoria, Michael Peña, Eugenio Derebez, Madeleine Madden, Nicholas Coombe, Danny Trejo, Benicio del Toro,
Rating: PG
Grade: B

Raised in remote jungles by her explorer parents, 16-year-old Dora is in over her head when they suddenly decide to send her to live with family in America so she can attend high school and learn to be a regular teenager. However, on a class field trip, Dora, her cousin Diego, and their classmates Sammy and Randy are all kidnapped by people looking for her parents and the fabled lost City of Gold they’ve spent most of Dora’s life looking for. With the help of an old colleague of her parents’, Dora sets out to find them, and the fabled city, before the bad guys can get what they’re after.

Having never seen the cartoon series this movie is based on, I can’t make any comparisons regarding the quality. From an outsider’s perspective, however, the movie is actually pretty good. The storyline works, and the younger actors all do well with the material, and manage to keep pace with their adult counterparts. The dialogue can get a little clunky and ham-handed, and at times Dora seems annoyingly naïve, but that’s more likely from an attempt to keep it on par with the source material. Despite that, it’s still an enjoyable movie.

The animations for Boots and Swiper are a little cartoony, but that could be on purpose. Aside from that, the special effects seem decent, and the background filler isn’t really noticeable.

This movie should appeal to most kids, as well as just about anyone who doesn’t mind an action/adventure geared towards a younger crowd. With a fairly simple story, it’s easy to follow, and there’s enough action and humor to keep it interesting. About the only things that might take adults out of the movie are the (occasionally) talking animals and a sequence animated to look like the cartoon show, which seemed slightly out of place in my opinion.

Dora and the Lost City of Gold is not available free to stream at the moment, but it can be rented through Redbox or Netflix home delivery, or purchased at any participating store or on-line retailer.
I’m always on the lookout for new things to watch/read, so if you have a suggestion for me, just let me know!

The Boys


Starring: Karl Urban, Jack Quaid, Antony Starr, Erin Moriarty, Dominique McElligott, Jesse T. Usher, Laz Alonso, Chace Crawford, Tomer Capon, Karen Fukuhara, Elisabeth Shue,
Rating: TV-MA
Network: Amazon
Grade: A

When Hughie Campbell’s girlfriend is accidentally killed by the superhero A-Train right in front of him, all he really wants is to know why. Shortly thereafter, Hughie meets Billy Butcher, a cynical former cop who wants to enlist Hughie in his crusade to take down the superhero team known as the Seven, who also happen to be the most famous group of supers in the world, and Vought, the company that finances them. Agreeing to help, Hughie soon finds himself caught up in Billy’s vengeance-fueled quest as they uncover web of corruption, lies, and the disheartening reality that the world’s favorite heroes are nowhere near as righteous as they make themselves out to be.

This bleak, hyper-violent, and darkly funny take on the superhero genre takes most of its cues from Zak Snyder’s Watchmen, in which the heroes are more violent and dangerous than the people they claim to be protecting the public from. It also adds in the concept of corporatizing and franchising heroes into a for-profit business. Most of the heroes are portrayed as jaded, selfish, and slightly amoral. For the most part, the Seven are a take on DC’s Justice League, with many of the members having abilities that mirror those heroes. The actors all do well in their roles, and they all have decent chemistry.

The special effects are all very well done, and the background filler isn’t noticeable.

As stated before, this show is incredibly violent, so anyone not liking that kind of thing probably won’t want to watch this, but anyone else who also likes comic book adaptations and superheroes should enjoy this.

The Boys is currently only available to stream on Amazon Prime, with no word as to whether or not they plan to make it available on video.