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DVD Review: Hatching Pete and Dadnapped

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Disney does it again with this delightful double feature, including the Disney Channel Original movies, Hatching Pete and Dadnapped. Lovers of the Disney Channel will feel right at home with familiar faces from such hit shows as Hannah Montana, The Suite Life on Deck, Wizards of Waverly Place, and Minutemen.

Dadnapped stars Emily Osment (Lilly from Hannah Montana) as Melissa Morris, the daughter of the best-selling mystery author Neal Morris, writer of the wildly popular Tripp Zoome book series. It seems everywhere she goes and whatever she does, Tripp is right there, stealing the spotlight – and her Dad’s attention.

On a trip that is suppose to be a father/daughter vacation, Melissa finds herself at a Tripp Zoome promotional event, much to her chagrin. Her Dad promises a fun time and a short stop before heading to their original destination of the Grand Canyon. This short stop turns into a nightmare, when crazed Tripp fans decide to “dadnap” Neal, leaving it is up to Melissa to find and save her father. As she pushes anger of her fictional archenemy, Tripp, aside, she taps into her inner “Zoome” to come up with a plan to rescue both her Dad and herself.

In the end, Melissa makes an amazing discovery about both herself and her Dad.

Hatching Pete is a hilarious and fun romp with a chicken! When Cleatis (Mitchel Musso, Oliver from Hannah Montana) realizes he is allergic to the chicken mascot costume, he pleads with his best friend Pete (Jason Dolly from Minutemen) to secretly wear it and be Brewster High’s Chicken. Reluctantly, Jason agrees and, taking the advice of his Dad to make himself stand out to capture the attention of a girl he likes, he turns the Chicken into a wildly popular icon.

All goes well as Pete keeps up the charade of goofy, funny, and athletic Chicken, until an accidental unmasking reveals that it really isn’t Cleatis behind the mask. The townspeople become frenzied, as they try to discover who the person behind the Chicken head really is. Then the Chicken disappears, followed by pleas by the basketball coach and many others to reappear, saying he is their only hope to play any kind of worthwhile basketball game.

Will Pete be brave enough to hatch from his shell and present himself as the real person behind the beloved Chicken mascot, or will he turn tail and run?

As a parent, I really enjoyed both Hatching Pete and Dadnapped. I did find a few inconsistencies here and there, such as when Melissa goes into the library, gets splattered with goo from a “Book Tripp Trap”, has a confrontation with her Dad, then turns to leave the library. The next scene shows her Dad following her out of the library and Melissa is spotless – not a drop of goo anywhere on her. Small things like that caught my attention, but they did nothing to distract from the movie and it is doubtful that the age range this is meant for will really take notice.

Geared toward the tween audience, I feel that both Hatching Pete and Dadnapped will appeal to younger and older people as well. Both of my children (ages 2 and 7) loved Dadnapped and Hatching Pete. There were several scenes, throughout Hatching Pete, that all three of us were laughing out loud. When the Chicken was not dominating a scene, my son kept asking about the “buck buck”.

Disney’s Double Feature of Hatching Pete and Dadnapped makes a wonderful family fun experience that both parents and children will greatly enjoy. The actors do a fabulous job of portraying their characters, there are tons of laugh out loud scenes in both movies, and Disney fans will even have the enjoyment of listening to music performed by Emily Osment and Mitchel Musso throughout their respective movies. Included in the DVD case is a special online code that will allow viewers to go online and watch two full-length music videos: “Hero In Me” by Emily Osment and “Let It Go” by Mitchel Musso and Tiffany Thornton.

Also included are bonus features at the end of each movie. After Hatching Pete, you will discover “Unmasking The Mascot” which is actually a pretty interesting showing and telling about how the Chicken mascot came to be and what it was like inside the costume. The bonus features on Dadnapped include an extended ending and an animated graphic novel titled Trip Zoome: Off the Rails. Both are great and will add to the viewing experience.

Two full-length movies on one DVD for one great price is an excellent combination! In addition, both Hatching Pete and Dadnapped are enjoyable and fun movies that have a common theme: be confident in yourself and who you are. A double header set of family movies that a parent can be confident in and that children/tweens/teens will enjoy.

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About April Pohren