Usually big-time action stars start to do other types of movies later on in their careers. From Chuck Norris to Arnold Schwarzenegger, they have all done “family comedies” later in their careers. More recently Eddie Murphy has transitioned from R-rated fare to family films that are mostly misses. But it’s never a good sign when an action star or would-be action star starts to do family films in the middle of their career. That is exactly what former professional wrestler Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson appears to be doing now. First, it was Disney’s The Game Plan and now it’s Fox’s Tooth Fairy.
In Tooth Fairy, Johnson plays Derek, a former pro hockey player now in the minors where he’s known as “The Tooth Fairy.” His hard hits often lead to missing teeth for his opposition. He is dating a single mom named Carly (Ashley Judd), who has a young daughter Tess (Destiny Grace Whitlock). When Derek almost tells her young daughter there’s no real tooth fairy, after he steals the money from underneath her pillow, he finds himself summoned before the head Fairy herself (Julie Andrews).
Given two weeks of fairy duty so he can learn the power of hopes and dreams and fantasies, Derek is in for some wacky adventures. Tracy (Stephen Merchant), a caseworker who dreams of becoming a fairy, assists and observes him along the way. In addition, a Fairyland outfitter named Jerry (Billy Crystal) also provides Derek with his fairy costume and all the magic potions which he will require to perform his duties as a fairy.
The script for this film is credited to at least 5 people. Apparently this film idea has been bouncing around Hollywood for years now. This film would appear to be best left in the 1990s. Everything about the film is predictable from start to finish. You can almost point out the major script points that were thrown in at the last second because the writers knew they should probably have those moments in there.
As far as the jokes go, well it’s mostly just for kids. There is plenty of hijinks involving Johnson walking around in tights and his fairy costume. Of course, there is forced sentimental stuff as well. But at least there is still a positive message for kids and adults to learn for the first time or be reminded of. That being follow through with your dreams.
What ultimately helps this film more than anything is Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Johnson tried to be an action star, but that didn’t really work out so well. So he decided to do what other big muscle-bound action stars have done and star in family comedies. He is really not doing anything new, but his sarcastic take on this character is still fun to watch at times. The rest of the acting isn’t the greatest, but Billy Crystal steals most of the scenes he appears. At least they look like they had fun making this film.
Tooth Fairy is mostly cheesy throughout with nothing really original about it. But sometimes you get the feeling that the actors involved in this film know that writing is not the best, and are just having fun with the material they are given. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson especially brings this film up to another level. It’s too bad all of the writing lets him down consistently. If you have children, this is a film to rent and have them watch, because they likely will be laughing throughout. For adults, there is nothing for you to see that you haven’t seen before. But Tooth Fairy is definitely not as bad as it might sound.
This DVD set contains both the Blu-ray and standard DVD version of this film. The video on the Blu-ray disc is presented in 1080p/AVC at the 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen color ratio, which is enhanced for 16:9 TVs of course. This transfer is great. All of the images and colors look bright and vibrant. The video for the standard definition DVD is presented in anamorphic widescreen color at the 1.85:1 ratio as well. This transfer is great too and about on par with other new release dvds. There is really not much difference between either version to the average eye, though. No major video problems on either disc.
The audio included on the Blu-ray disc is available in either English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Surround sound, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound, French Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound, or Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound. There are subtitles available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Mandarin as well. The audio included on the standard DVD is available in either English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound, or French Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound. There are subtitles available in English and Spanish as well. Both discs feature dialogue and music that come out loud and clear. As expected, the Blu-ray disc sounds a little better than the standard definition DVD, but there is really not much difference between the two versions. No major problems on either disc here either.
Digital Copy –
The first “exclusive” for this Blu-ray DVD set of Tooth Fairy that should be noted is that not only does this set contain the Blu-ray DVD of Tooth Fairy, but also the standard definition DVD and digital copy of this film as well.
Introduction by Director Michael Lembeck – This runs 20 seconds and it basically very briefly sells the movie.
Audio Commentary – This is a full-length commentary with the director, Michael Lembeck. It’s too bad actually. Lembeck is able to mix in entertaining stories with informative facts from making this film.
“Behind the Scenes” Featurette – This runs 39 minutes and it includes further information on the making of the film as Lembeck introduces members responsible for various tasks with the making of the film.
Gag Reel – This is 2 1/2 minutes worth of the usual pranks and gags from filming this film.
Deleted Scenes – There are 6 scenes that didn’t make the final cut of the film and they total 11 minutes. Lembeck provides an introduction for each scene.
Found on the Standard Edition As Well…
“Tooth Fairy Training Center” Featurette – This runs 20 minutes and it shows everyone how to do Derek’s fairy job. Only for kids here.
“Fairyoke” Karaoke Feature – This runs four minutes and it has Stephen Merchant and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson singing along. See above.
This is a good film for kids, since it has a lot of jokes aimed directly at them, but doesn’t lower the bar with gross-out humor. That’s refreshing in this type of film. Still it’s only worth a rental, if you have children or REALLY love Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
20th Century FOX Home Entertainment presents Tooth Fairy. Directed by Michael Lembeck. Starring Dwayne Johnson, Ashley Judd, Billy Crystal, Steven Merchant, and Julie Andrews. Written by Babaloo Mandel and Lowell Ganz. Running time: 101 minutes. Rated PG. Released on DVD: May 4, 2010. Available at Amazon.com.
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