Rated: PG Reviewed by: Frank Release date: February 18, 2005 Released by: New Line Cinema
In the beginning we hear talk of releases from the ID something like the monsters from the ID in 1956's Forbidden Planet. But Loki (Alan Cumming) the youngest son of Odin (Bob Hoskins) has been too mischievous and now that the mask is lost Odin has no patience left for his youngest son.
Loki working to regain his father’s confidence searches for the mask beginning in a museum where he is disappointed by a copy. It’s the dog owned by Tim Avery (Jamie Kennedy) who has found the mask. Tim, married to Tonya (Traylor Howard), is not ready for the family she is anxious to begin. The mask solves that problem quickly when Tim wears it and becomes many characters, one being a lover for his wife that results in a pregnancy, she is very pink on the test, with consequences to follow.
Director Larry Guterman mixes music with comic book action such as using “I Love You Baby” as human and animated characters dance to the rhythm along with cars parked in the parking lot, and Otis the dog seduces another canine to the music of “Puppy Love.” We also see the fetus dancing inside through the ultrasound process; he is a child of the mask. He quickly learns to move his verbal skills from mama to mother but he won’t say dad.
Otis dawns the mask and attempts to match the kids power (he’s jealous because the child gets all the attention he was receiving). The kid even takes over the room assigned to him and now he must live in the dog house outside.
Tim is an animator who has yet to be noticed and the green faced character which he turns into when wearing the mask may be his ticket to the second floor at work. But mom must travel and Tim has child-care duties for the unique baby.
Guterman mixes the animation and live action quite effectively along with some traditional animated movie violence similar to the Road Runner’s devastation of the coyote.
What works lasts through about two thirds of the film and then becomes repetitive and stale dimming the initial sparkle of the production and limiting its ability to entertain.
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