Accidentally left behind by a travelling circus in Kentucky,
a young zebra foal, is taken in by Nolan (Greenwood) and Channing (Panettiere)
Walsh. Naming him Stripes (Muniz), the young zebra grows up on the farm
next to the Kentucky Open racecourse. Seeing the thoroughbred horses training
for the big race, Stripes dreams of becoming a racehorse. With the help
of Channing and the rest of the animals on the farm, Stripes is about to
discover if he does have the speed and the heart to reach the finishing
Combining talking animals and human characters may not be
the most original idea, but there is something you can't help but like about
The little zebra that could, will have you cheering for him
to make it in the big race, even when you know the outcome is inevitable
because the film has one big thing going for it, the characters. While the
story might not be the most original, it is the inhabitants of the Walsh
farm that make the movie so watchable for both kids and adults alike.
The filmmakers have gathered together an excellent vocal cast
to bring these characters to life. Frankie Muniz is Stripes, the plucky
zebra who dreams of being a racehorse. Dustin Hoffman is Tucker, the Shetland
pony who just happens to be a master trainer. Whoopi Goldberg is Franny,
a motivational goat. Joe Pantoliano is Goose, a New Jersey Pelican on the
run from the mob and a wannabe hitman. Joshua Jackson is Trenton's Pride,
Stripes' main rival and Mandy Moore is Sandy, Stripes' love interest. The
comedic stylings of David Spade and Steve Harvey bring flies Buzz and Scuzz
to life. What makes these performances so good is that each of them create
a vocal character and are not just their off screen persona transferred
into an animal.
The human characters are really secondary to the animal performers
but the main players Bruce Greenwood and Hayden Panettiere, do a good job
as Nolan and Channing Walsh. Greenwood is an underestimated actor who deserves
a lot more acclaim than he gets and Hayden Panettiere is another good up
and coming actress that will make waves on the teen scene.
'Racing Stripes' is a very good family movie that will appeal
to everyone, whatever their age. With cute animals and a sporting, against
the odds story that will have everyone cheering, this is wholesome entertainment
that you can bet you are going to like.
PICTURE & SOUND
Presented in Anamorphic Widescreen 2.40:1 with Dolby Digital 5.1 surround
sound, the movie is presented very well, highlighting the quality animation
of the talking animals.
Director Frederik du Chau provides an informative and fun track that takes
you behind the scenes of the making of 'Racing Stripes'. With his extensive
background in animation the director talks extensively about the visual
look of the movie, commenting on the colour pallet and set design of the
film. He also chats about working with animals and the all-star vocal
cast that provides the voices for the Walsh farm inhabitants. This is
a good commentary from a director who clearly feels passionate about his
Alternate Ending (1.26 mins)
Watch a different ending to the movie that introduces a new character
to the Walsh farm.
Barnyard Outtakes (8.13 mins)
See more of Buzz and Scuzz, Lightening, Goose and Reggie as they bring
their own kind of comedy to the movie.
How to make Animals talk (5.43 mins)
Director Frederik du Chau, editor Tom Finan, visual effects supervisor
Dion Hatch, computer graphics supervisor and vocal stars Frankie Muniz,
Dustin Hoffman, Whoopi Goldberg and Jeff Foxworthy reveal how the Walsh
farm animals actually talked in 'Racing Stripes'.
Animal Acting (9.43 mins)
Animal training supervisor Karl Lewis Miller, barnyard supervisor Caroline
Girdlestone and their skilled team of animal coordinators introduce you
to the animal actors that played the roles of Stripes, Lightening, Goose,
Reggie and all your other favourites.
Additional Scenes (2.38 mins)
Entitled 'Stripes at play', 'Tucker's bad joke', 'Sir Trenton's Pep talk',
'Miss Dalrymple's press conference' and 'Woodzie's risky business', these
deleted or extended scenes are fun but with a commentary or introduction,
you don't know why they were cut.
Buzz and Scuzz's flying fiasco
An interactive game where you have to remember a sequence of moves to
help Stripes win the race
Interactive Comic Book (6.31 mins)
Watch a comic book prequel to the movie as you read or listen to what
happened to before the movie started and how Stripes came into the world.
The Music of Racing Stripes with Sting and Bryan Adams (4.01 mins)
The two superstar composers and artists talk about writing music and songs
for 'Racing Stripes'.
Trailer (2.24 mins)
Watch the theatrical trailer for the movie
Fans of 'Racing Stripes' will be pleased with this DVD. There is much
to enjoy here for the younger viewer and a commentary track for the older
watcher. The inclusion of a Buzz and Scuzz track would have improved matters
but you can't have everything.
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