After the great success of his role as Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr. returns to theaters with the film Dolittle, where in addition to being the protagonist, he also signs the executive production of the feature he has in the direction Stephen Gaghan (Ouro e Coviça, 2016).
The film shows the life of the Dr. John Dolittle (Downey Jr.) and his career as a veterinarian in England, being even recognized by the Queen Victoria (Jessie Buckley) and gaining a sanctuary to live with the animals rescued by him and his wife Lily Dolittle (Kasia Smutniak). Things change when Lily sets out on a journey and does not return, leaving him a widower and recluse from the world outside the sanctuary.
When Tommy (Harry Collet) is taken by Polynesia (Emma Thompson), ends up entering the sanctuary in search of help to save the life of a squirrel at the same time that Lady Rose (Carmel Laniado) seeks help for the sick queen. Convinced by Polynesia, the Doctor meets the Queen very weak and the only solution is the fruit of a mystical tree, which nobody knows if it really exists, nor where it is. Dr. Dolittle's journey will not be easy, but he is in the company of the animals that are his friends and his self-titled apprentice, Tommy.
With a simple plot and charming scenarios, the story takes place without major plot surprises, but remains interesting until the end, with well-placed jokes and without exaggeration. Simplicity is something that works well in the feature, it shows that the less often is more, which allows the actors' interpretation to have a singular highlight.
The special effects used on animals make them bring facial expressions without seeming forced, the dubbing complements this work and further increases the perception of the transmitted feelings.
The film also features actresses and actors of great caliber, such as Antonio Banderas in the role of Rassouli, the King of Pirates and Michael Sheen, who recently played the angel Aziraphale in the series Good Omens, the BBC with Amazon. Dubbing has Tom Holland like the dog Jip, Rami Malek like the gorilla Chee-Chee, Selena Gomez like the giraffe Betsy, among others.
The history of Dolittle is already known by many people for the films starring Eddie Murphy and later by Kyla Pratt, with a total of 5 features, known for maintaining a comedy tone common to the time it was released, with scenes often forced to make you laugh, with meaningless moments and just for entertainment.
The new production differs from what is portrayed in the previous films, the date they take place are quite different and while one is treated as sick, in the case of the previous ones, Dolittle he is treated as a special person in this new work.
His ability to speak to animals had an original background, while one spoke to animals since childhood and spent time without this power, the Dolittle current communication in the language of animals, not being an extraordinary power, but a capacity that can be learned, as it happens with your apprentice. Even with the same base, the plots are quite distinct from each other, keeping only Dolittle's main part, talking to animals.