Thursday, November 10, 2005


I stumbled across one of the greatest DVD sets ever produced the other day:
The Beethoven Pooch Pack.

For under $20 I got ALL FIVE films from the Beethoven series. Mind you, I didn't know they ever made a 3, 4 or 5, but I NEEDED to have a complete Beethoven collection.

Upon coming home I sat down to watch the DVD. To keep me sane I kept some essentials near the couch. A six pack of beer, some chips, beef jerky and my crochet stuff.

Over the next 8 hours I laughed, cried and knitted a tissue box cozy. It was the greatest night of my life.

This is the original and features Charles Grodin. Grodin and his family own a large dog named Beethoven. Stanley Tucci and Oliver Platt are trying to steal Beethoven so that Dean Jones can shoot it in the head. Dean Jones was the star of many Disney films including The Love Bug. He is a creepy villain and a joy to watch.
Platt and Tucci are great and Grodin is... uh... Grodin.
I tried to pretend that Tucci and Platt were playing a live action Bert and Ernie. That made me laugh and laugh.

The dog is back for this theatrical sequel. In this one Grodin takes the family to the woods. There was a subplot involving Grodin's character's daughter.
Her boy friend takes her to his room to show her "the view."
When I say he wanted to show her "the view," I don't mean the TV show where a bunch of broads babble about what kind soap they use and who Brad Pitt is dating. He claimed to want to show her the view of the lake.
But, what is his motive?
Meanwhile, Beethoven is being harassed by a bunch of teens. They pour beer on him as the boyfriend is trying to make is move. The two combine to give him his comeuppance!
As she demands to know WHY he locked the door, Beethoven starts to run pulling on one of the struts that holds up the balcony. The strut gives way and the house is ripped apart, half of it falling into the lake.
A horrifying scene ensues. Dozens of minors are dumped painfully into the lake with hundreds of thousand of dollars of lakeside property falling atop them.
The daughter makes a quip: "Thanks for showing me the view!"
The event or its consequences are never mentioned again.

Grodin's family has loaned the dog to Judge Reinhold's family for a road trip. Hilarity attempts to ensue.
The film ends with Frank Gorshin telling Reinhold's family that get to keep the dog for two more years as they tour Europe. This seemed really out of character for Grodin's family. It also seems stupid for me to refer to them as "Grodin's family" but I am too lazy to look up what the family name was.

Beethoven is accidentally switched with fancy, well behaved dog. Rich people are mocked and (once again) someone wants to kidnap a St. Bernard.

A small girl who claims to be the daughter of the Reinhold bunch arrives at her uncle's house with Beethoven. She looks nothing like the girl in the previous film, but I was more puzzled by the fact that she STILL has the dog.
I assume that Grodin and company were killed by the French. Those bastard French.
Uncle Freddie is played by Dave Thomas, but not the one from the Wendy's commercials. Still it has a brief appearance by Mary Jo Catlett who played Pearl on "Diff'rent Strokes" and Faith Ford AND John Laroquette.
The plot involves a hidden treasure of stolen bank loot, but I was too distracted by Daveigh Chase.
She played the lead, but I know her better as the voice of Lilo in Disney's Lilo and Stitch. Listening to her was just surreal. Not as surreal as when I heard the voice of Lisa Simpson say the "F" word in The Legend of Billie Jean, but it was still surreal.

Overall, it was worth the sawbuck I paid for it (I don't really know what a sawbuck is.) It sure was more entertaining than the next night when I just played with the tissue box cozy and looked up “sawbuck” in the dictionary.


  1. Sawbuck: a framework for holding wood that is being sawed.

  2. Anonymous11/10/2005

    Sweetie - you uncultured swine!

    Dog flicks are movies that I am a big fan of, usually only because of the dog itself. But, this film... well, basically its the same deal, here, but at least it was good. Usually, a lot of family films with dogs are just cheesy films where big time actors bond with the dog, even though they didn't want it at first. In this case, it was funny, heart-warming to dog lovers, and fun for the whole family.

    Beethoven is one of the actually good family films about dogs that are out there. Dog lovers would like it a lot, because it is funny, heart-warming, and shows the relationship between a man and his dog which he once hated, which can go to show you that, just like the saying goes, dog is man's best friend.

  3. Anonymous11/10/2005

    Swwetie - I don't know what movie you watched...

    This is a terrible movie. Its only saving graces are Wolfgang Reichmann's performance as Beethoven, the locations and costumes. Dieter Prinz as Karl, Beethoven's nephew, is monotonous and expressionless (as are several other actors). He may have been reading his lines phonetically; if so someone should have coached him better. The costumer clearly did her research, as some of the outfits look nearly identical to sketches and paintings from Beethoven's time. Reichmann bears a decent resemblance to him (although, sometimes he looks more like Leo McKern) and does a fine job with what he's given. However, there are many inaccuracies. The portrayal of his increasing deafness is inconsistent and the reenactment of the famous performance of the Ninth Symphony at which Beethoven attempted to conduct was simply wrong.

  4. Anonymous11/10/2005

    A dog that conducts an orchestra? What a movie! What... oh, nevermind. At least it's got Grodin and Reinhold. That's something. He's not really a Judge though.

  5. Anonymous11/11/2005

    hey Sweetie.. - it's Brian, from Review the World.. - you left a comment in my blog ages ago.. - just wanted to return the favor.. - your site looks pretty rad.. i'm going to try to make it a point to start hitting the archives and getting caught up on your pieces.. - adios!

  6. Hey Brian.
    I love Review the World. Everyone should check it out.

  7. Anonymous11/14/2005

    Ol' Wrinkled Pants -

    You are correct... Beethoven rules! I M Da' Bomb!