movies

'7 reasons why Dolittle is the adventure film I'm desperate to see with my kids this summer.'

Universal Pictures International
Thanks to our brand partner, Universal Pictures International

With the long summer holidays in full swing, parents around the country are all on high alert for fun activities to do with the kids.

For me, a trip to the cinema is a great option, as:

a) There’s air con;

b) I can eat Maltesers in the morning without being judged by society, and

c) My kids might stop hitting each other for five minutes.

It’s a win for us all.

With this in mind, there’s a film coming out this month that ticks all the boxes for me.

Based on The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle by Hugh Lofting, the all-new Dolittle movie sees Robert Downey Jr play the eccentric doctor that can talk to animals.

It’s his first film since wrapping Marvel’s Avengers movies, and quite frankly, it’s about time we see him do something different.

Here’s what else makes it stand out for me:

1. Dolittle for the modern child.

While I haven’t read the original story to the kids (I think I’d be hard pressed to explain the casual racism of the 1920s), the new-look premise is ideal for my school-aged children.

The computer-animated graphics look incredible. Think Jurassic Park realism (but the animals look much more friendly). Kids expect a LOT these days when it comes to films, and this looks set to deliver.

Watch the Dolittle trailer and see for yourself. Post continues after video.

2. See if you can play ‘guess who’s voicing what’.

A huge bunch of celebs are lending their voices to the animals. While my kids aren’t terribly interested in this list, you might be.

There’s Robert Downey Jr’s Avengers co-star Tom Holland (AKA Peter Parker/Spider-Man), actress-singer Selena Gomez, James Bond star Ralph Fiennes, Oscar winner Marion Cotillard, triple Oscar nominee Octavia Spencer (Hidden Figures), Rami Malek (who did an incredible job playing Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody – for which he won an Oscar for), Craig Robinson (who you’ll know as Darryl from the American version of The Office), and one of my all-time favourites – Years and Years star Emma Thompson.

Antonio Banderas (Puss in Boots) and Jim Broadbent (who will always be the dad from Bridget Jones to me) are just some of the live-action stars. Banderas in particular makes a flashy appearance in the trailer as mysterious, blinged-out pirate Rassoulim.

3. RDJ’s Welsh accent.

Twitter went nuts when the trailer dropped, as the world asked “IS HE DOING A WELSH ACCENT???”

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Since parts of the film were shot in Anglesey in Wales, it seems Downey Jr is indeed attempting the lilting Welsh accent.

Whether he nails it or not will no doubt be decided once the film premieres, but if anyone can do it, it’s Robert.

4. Adventure to hold the kids’ attention spans.

The story begins with the doctor living as a hermit within Dolittle Manor with his crew of exotic animals for company. He is called upon to set sail on the high seas in the search for a cure for the ill young Queen of England.

My almost eight-year-old son was very interested in the battle scenes, with canons firing, sword fights, gigantic waves and baddies with some serious eyeliner.

5. The animals. All the animals.

This film’s menagerie of animals looks set to provide the support cast, with a parrot, tiger, polar bear, dog, ostrich and duck on board with the doctor.

Since my youngest (at the ripe old age of five) plans to become a vet, anything with this many animals is sure to appeal.

Dolittle's dog Jip is voiced by RDJ's Avengers co-star Tom Holland (Spider-Man). Image: Universal Pictures Ausralia.

6. The LOLs.

RDJ is known for his trademark wit, especially from what we’ve seen from him in Iron Man.

You need to ask yourself, how many times do you get to see a grown man riding an ostrich? Not many, friends, not many.

But really, just seeing a polar bear in a woolly hat was enough to elicit a giggle from my two little people.

7. Audition tapes.

As part of the film’s promotion some funny ‘audition’ tapes have been released, featuring Downey Jr running lines with the animal actors.

Our family’s favourite one? The anxious gorilla reciting the Despicable Me line with a posh accent while he squeezes a mouse ("it’s so fluffy I am going to die").

It's an easy decision for us these school holidays.

Dolittle is in cinemas on January 16.

Universal Pictures International

DOLITTLE is only in cinemas January 16

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