Plot: What’s it about?
What should be a routine field trip turns into the adventure of a lifetime, thanks to five cute, talking puppies. The pups are taken along on the trip by their masters, who visit a space center to learn all about the space program. This is sure to be more fun than most field trips, but when the pups decide to have too much fun, even outer space can’t hold them back. The puppies manage to break off from their masters and begin to explore the space center. As various employees try to capture the puppies, the dogs remain one step ahead of them all. The five pups soon discover a hiding place where they can low, but they are unaware this space vessel they’ve hidden inside of isn’t just an exhibit. The puppies soon find themselves launched into space, but can even these scrappy pups make it through such a wild adventure?
The saga of the golden retrievers continues and this time, the adventures take place in outer space. Space Buddies reunites the lovable puppies once again and as before, this is entertainment aimed at children. I don’t usually mind movies for kids, but this series has provided little enjoyment to this point. That trend continues with Space Buddies, which I am sure will elicit some laughs out of young ones, but does little to keep older audiences interested. Even so, you can’t really be too harsh, as it is obvious this was made for a specific audience. The puppies are cute as always and while the story is thin, kids will like all the space elements and the pace remains brisk throughout. The fast pace and ample action will keep even easily distracted kids tuned in, so for younger viewers, Space Buddies is worth a look.
Video: How does it look?
Space Buddies is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. I found this to be good, but not much better than that. The visuals are clean and sharp, but aren’t a huge step up over the DVD. A few scenes pack the kind of depth we want from HD, but most just look a little clearer than the DVD. The colors appear bright and vivid however, while contrast runs at a smooth, consistent clip and that is good news. I wouldn’t call this a bad transfer by any means, but given how new this is, I expected better than an average visual effort.
Audio: How does it sound?
The subject matter might be light, but this DTS HD 5.1 option means business. The surrounds are active here, thanks to the space elements and action driven scenes. Obviously this isn’t the same kind of power found in dedicated action films, but given the material, I think the audio is impressive. The loud scenes stand out of course, but even reserved ones sound good. The music is well handled and vocals are always as clear as a bell. This disc also includes English subtitles.
Supplements: What are the extras?
A brief featurette gives an overview of the space program and while short, it does provide some educational tidbits. In addition to some outtakes and a music video, there are two enhanced viewing modes. One is a scavenger hunt to find things in the movie, while the other is a trivia track. Both are cool inclusions and will help pull some additional screenings of fun for the younger viewers.