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"Paulie" is a very well done children's film about the friendship between a talking parrot and a young girl who has problems with stuttering. Her friendship with the talking bird helps her to conquer her problem, but after an accident teaching the bird to fly, he's sent away.
We learn all about the story in flashback as Paulie is stuck in the basement of a research facility as the film opens. He makes a friend with the new Janitor(Tony Shalhoub) and begins to tell the whole story of how he came to be.
After Paulie gets sent away, he is bought by an older woman who finally agrees to take him across the country in search for his former owner. I found the scenes between Paulie and Ivy(Gena Rowlands) to be very enjoyable and touching. "Paulie" isn't your normal everyday children's film. It isn't always bright and happy and I think there are a lot of moments in the film that I found wonderfully acted and the emotions put across feel honest and real.
We then follow Paulie to Los Angeles, where he meets a female Parrot and finds himself owned by a few more characters, such as Cheech Marin as he continues on his journey to find Marie, his original owner.
I found all of the performances quite enjoyable, especially Hallie Eisenberg(the girl from the "Pepsi" ads) as Marie. The very real parrots look great and are trained extremely well. Cinematography by Tony Pierce Roberts("Howard's End", "Remains of The Day" and "Disclosure") is beautiful as well.
"Paulie" may not always be perfect, but I certainly found it an enjoyable children's film.
VIDEO QUALITY:Beautiful anamorphic 1.85:1 image with wonderfully vibrant colors. A good example is an early scene where Tony Shalhoub's character goes out to the local fruit stand to get Paulie something to eat. The colors of the various fruits are vibrant and beautiful. The image is clear, crisp and wonderfully sharp throughout. Color saturation and contrast are both excellent; there are no problems with colors bleeding in the image. Shadow detail is also enjoyably presented.
With "Paulie", Dreamworks continues their series of excellently produced DVDs. Like the rest of the Dreamworks product, this DVD looks excellent. The bright daylight scenes look excellent and even the scenes at night retain clarity and sharpness. There are no instances of artifacts or other various problematic elements. Attention to detail is very good here as well. This is a very pleasant presentation overall and another very good job by Dreamworks.
SOUND: "Paulie" is fairly simple movie in terms of sound quality. That said, what it does present does sound very good and wonderfully clear. John Debney, who has done the score for films such as "Liar, Liar" and the upcoming "Inspector Gadget", composed the music for "Paulie" and it certainly sounds good and well integrated into the overall sound. The dialogue sounds especially clear and crisp; it has a natural and rich quality that is fantastic and easy to hear.
MENUS: Lovely and funny animated menus where "Paulie" talks back to you after you make a selection.
EXTRAS: The theatrical trailer.
The Film: 85/B = (425/500 possible points)
Video: 91/A- = (364/400 possible points)
Audio: 85/B = (340/400 possible points)
Extras: 70/C- = (210/300 possible points)
Menus: 90/A- = (180/200 possible points)
Value: 82/B = (246/300 possible points)
Presentation:84/C = (84/100 possible points)
Final Thought:A very enjoyable family film and a beautiful transfer from Dreamworks.