Beverly Hills Chihuahua chokes

By Katherine Zelt

Talking dog gets lost. Talking dog finds talking dog friend. Talking dog finds home and lives happily ever after. Though by no means an original story, it is indubitably a pleaser to an audience of under 12-year-olds.

When Chloe (voice of Drew Barrymore), a spoiled, shallow, Harry Winston-sporting Chihuahua gets dog-napped and thrown into a dog-fighting pen during her Mexican vacation, she befriends Delgado (Andy Garcia), a German shepherd with a tortured soul and a mysterious past who helps her escape from Diablo (Edward James Olmos), a vicious killer Doberman. Meanwhile, fellow Chihuahua Papi (George Lopez), the mangy pet of the 90210 estate’s landscaper, embarks on a mission to save Chloe despite her obvious dislike for him.

As atrociously cliche as the movie is, there are some laughable moments including one scene in particular with Chloe and Delgado wandering in circles through the outskirts of Mexico City when they suddenly find themselves defended from a seemingly fatal wild cat attack by a pack of hundreds of Chihuahuas that appear out of absolutely nowhere. It is when Chloe and Delgado are led back to the Chihuahua’s hideout- conveniently the Mayan Ruins- we are introduced to the phrase “no mas” or “no more”- meant to be a mantra for Chihuahuas or any other small victimized beings to find their inner bark and stand up for themselves.

Disney’s efforts to teach people to have faith in each other- but more importantly in themselves- is commendable, but with the age range the movie targets, audiences likely won’t see past the doggie booties and doggie cashmere. The Mexican theme of the movie was fun, but making light of dog-fighting is not so funny and for someone who absolutely loves dogs, Beverly Hills Chihuahua goes a little too far.