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A Goofy Movie Review

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Goofy, the lovable buck-toothed Disney dog, gets his own movie in which he takes his son, Max, on a fishing trip, much against Max's wishes…

★★★★★

Goofy is living proof that perseverance can get you somewhere. While his colleagues Mickey and Donald hogged the limelight - top billing, hit features, more merchandise - Goofy contented himself with lesser roles and a less glamorous life.

True, he has sparked numerous late night discussions along the lines of "If Pluto's a dog, then what's Goofy?" but for the last 63 years that's about it. Now all is about to change as the septuagenarian is finally rewarded with his own starring role in his first feature.

A Goofy Movie is a relatively low key animated production from Disney, lacking the visual quality of the company's more lavish summer epics, but still delivering plenty of family entertainment. With no sign of Mrs. Goofy about, our hero is busy raising his teenage son Max. Being a teenager, however, Max has no time for the parental Goof. He's rather be out impersonating his hero, rapper Power Line or swooning over the gorgeous Roxanne. Goofy on the other hand, is determined to re-bond with the boy and orders a cross-country road-trip.

The strained relationship between father and son and the need to work these emotional problems through is an increasingly dominant theme in American cinema, and A Goofy Movie fits in perfectly with that trend, lending an unexpected sensibility (plus nondescript songs) to propel things along.

There's something strangely unsettling about a Disney movie featuring so many modern references - from rap stars to Pauly Shore - a feeling of straying into areas they don't belong in. But the strength lies in the storytelling, and while this is slight, it's still a lot of fun.

Harmless enough day in the sun for Goofy; pity there's an overwhelming feeling throughout that he deserves better.