Just in time for the World Cup, Air Bud: World Pup (2000) has been rereleased
on DVD as Air Bud: World Pup Special Edition. Buddy the golden retriever
tries his hand, er, paw, at another sport, this time soccer. Love is in
the "air" in this film, as it opens with the wedding of Buddy's owner's mom,
Buddy's owner Josh (Kevin Zegers) falls for the new girl on his soccer team,
Emma (Brittany Paige Bouck), and Buddy falls for Emma's golden retriever Molly.
Josh and Emma's sad sack soccer team finds itself coming together with the help
of the play of Buddy. Wouldn't you know it, the team starts to get really
good and soon is making a championship run. However, some dognappers have
their eyes on Buddy's new pup brood, and of course decide to make their move on
the day of the big game.
Air Bud: World Pup is about what you'd expect from a Disney animal movie -
competent acting, animal hijinks, and a sugary sweet, kid-friendly story that
all works out in the end. Parents will be able to sit through this one;
even though its pretty obvious where everything is going and each mildly
dramatic moment is quickly and conveniently resolved. Kids will get a kick
out of it, though, with all of the puppy love romance and cute animals appealing
to girls, and the sports action keeping the boys interested.
This release of Air Bud: World Pup includes the making of featurette form the
original release. This was obviously made for television of the last
ccentury, and its five minute runtime indicates that it probably began life as a
short promo sandwich between shows on The Disney Channel. New to this
release is the Buddies Sports Channel, another five minute special that features
Buddy's puppies talking during clips of the movie and essentially serving as a
trailer synopsis of the film. The puppies' voices are pretty annoying, but
kids won't mind that as much as the adults.