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Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile Blu-ray Review

Javier Bardem keeps “Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile” afloat. 

Based on the children’s book series by Bernard Waber, “Lyle, Lyle Crocodile” is a musical comedy film about a broke entertainer/magician (Hector) who discovers a singing baby crocodile he affectionately names Lyle. Hector hopes to do a stage show with Lyle, but it doesn’t work out and Hector leaves Lyle behind at the house. Years later, the Primm family moves into the building and the lonely and unhappy son (Josh) meets and befriends Lyle. Lyle (who can still only just sing) ends up bonding with the whole family, but matters become complicated by a nosey neighbor (Alistair) and the return of Hector who wants to exploit Lyle once again.

Directed by Will Speck and Josh Gordon, “Lyle, Lyle Crocodile” continues the trend of heartwarming live-action/CGI hybrid children’s films with an outlandish concept. It certainly doesn’t get much more outlandish than a singing crocodile living with a family whose entire lives are changed by his presence. The more you think about the premise the more bizarre it is. There were several points where I wondered “What am I watching?” What’s even more perplexing is that not only do the characters seemingly accept Lyle so easily, but that the world these characters inhabit seems like some strange multiverse. The fact that the directors play the movie so straight makes it all the more strange. Imagine if someone like David Lynch directed this movie and how much more deranged it would be. At any rate, in terms of its existence as children’s fare, it could be a lot worse. The script by William Davies has its heart in the right place as it explores themes of family and overcoming fears, but the movie is also stuffed with eye-rolling moments like a CGI cat having diarrhea, crocodile wrestling and the entirely on the nose use of “Crocodile Rock” (we all knew that was coming even if we didn’t want it to). 

Given that this is a musical, there are a few known pop tunes along with original songs by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. All the tracks are sung by Shawn Mendes (AKA the voice of the titular croc). Truth be told, the songs were pretty forgettable and felt more like something you’d see in a “Sing” movie. Still, Mendes does make you believe that a croc can sing (even if you never wanted to actually see that).

Somehow ‘Lyle’ contains quite the cast with Javier Bardem, Constance Wu, Scoot McNairy, Brett Gelman and Winslow Fegley. Yes, you read that right. Javier Bardem is in this movie. My assumption is the acclaimed actor wanted a role where he could flex his comedic and musical abilities. He certainly does that here and is far and away the best part of the entire movie. His performance is nothing if not energetic. The rest of the cast is satisfactory in their respective roles

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 2.40:1 1080p. How does it look? In typical Sony Blu-ray fashion, this is a pristine hi-def transfer.

Audio Track: 5.1 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? A lively 5.1 track that handles the musical numbers exceedingly well.

Extras:
* DVD copy
* Digital copy
* 4 sing-along songs.
* 2 minutes of bloopers.
* “Croc And Roll- Lyle On Set”- A faux comical extra about Lyle on set.
* Deleted scene
* Sony trailers
* Music videos for “Carried Away” and “Top Of The World.”
* A featurette on the cast titled “Take A Look At us Now- The Cast.”
* “Story Time Featuring Shawn Mendes And Javier Bardem”- Cast and crew read “The House on East 88th Street.”

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December 13, 2022 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , ,

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