Secondhand Lions DVD: Review By justincase

  • OVERALL
    4.0
    GREAT
  • Feature
  • Extras
  • Replay Value
THE FEATURE
A young boy (Osment) is carted off to stay with his crazy uncles (Caine and Duvall) while his irresponsible mother galavants off on some random romp. While at his uncles' farm, he learns that the rumors that the two have loads of loot stashed are probably true and that the mystery surrounding their acc*mulation of the fortune make for great story-telling. In the end, the old codgers and the young boy grow close as the uncles teach their nephew what it means to believe...even if what you believe in may not be true.

So, how was it? Good.

Once you get past how much older Osment is now (since the last time you really remember seeing him in a movie) -- you'll have a lot of fun with this movie. The film is fun and fanciful and touching. It pains me to think that there are parents like the mother (Sedgwick) in the movie. I'll bet we all know one (or more). Then, there are the other greedy relatives that filter out to the uncles' farm in waves -- trying to ascertain the truth behind the rumors of the money (and get some, if not all, of it for themselves).

The boy doesn't want the money. He just wants to know the uncles...to hear their tales...to feel that he's a part of something. He wants to find someone he can believe (and believe in). It's clear that his mother has let him down more than he cares to recall.

In the end, the boy lives a vastly different life than you'd imagine he would have if he'd not come to stay with his uncles. Richer in character, if not in gold, he grows up remarkably well adjusted and successful...and the uncles clearly find something in the young boy that they have never really found throughout their travels and travails...family.

In case you hadn't already heard, the ending is just ever-so-slightly over the top. Sort of a slightly disjointed epilogue -- it plays just a bit like something that was tossed in at the last minute to appease test audiences, but I won't hold that against it.
THE EXTRAS
They're on this disc and -- unlike most -- this is a disc that I'll very likely revisit to watch the special features. Since I haven't checked them out yet, I'll just list them here:

* Commentary by director Tim McCanlies

* 30 Minutes of Deleted / Alternate Scenes with Optional Filmmaker Commentary

* "Secondhand Lions" One Screenplay's Wild Ride in Hollywood (doc*mentary)

* On The Set with "Secondhand Lions" (doc*mentary)

* Haley Joel Osment: An Actor Comes of Age (doc*mentary)

* Visual Effects Comparisons

* Theatrical Trailer & 7 TV Spots

* DVD ROM Features

* Easter Eggs

After you watch the film, you'll probably be compelled to check out at least some of these features. Like I said...despite the fact that I rarely check out the special features, I'll go back and spend some time with these.
THE FINAL WORD
A good movie that is well worth watching with your whole family (despite the PG rating). You'll find that there really is very little objectionable for most children (of any age).

You won't go wrong with this movie. I'd suggest you buy it. I did. Although I buy a lot of movies, there is nothing about this purchase that I regret.

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