The endearing airborne-beagle effects help to offset the formula twists.
Owen Gleiberman - Entertainment Weekly
The lackluster story connects the cliches but leaves the characters isolated. Underdog may have been originally created to sell cereal for General Mills, but this latest incarnation couldn't sell Frisbees at a dog park.
Jeannette Catsoulis - New York Times
Cath Clarke - Guardian [UK]
Where (oh where) are Tennessee Tuxedo and Phineas J. Whoopie when we need them?
Janice Page - Boston Globe
Underdog is made for the Saturday morning TV crowd, and parents who lead their tykes to this adventure aren't likely to leave disappointed.
Jack Mathews - New York Daily News
The TV show was mildly subversive, with humor that children and adults could enjoy on different levels, but the movie strives for a blander, family-oriented middle ground.
Joshua Katzman - Chicago Reader
Underdog is an underachiever in almost every way.
Colin Covert - Minneapolis Star Tribune
The sort of noisy, over-produced affair in line with much recent family-friendly programming.
Justin Chang - Variety
I have an idea for the sequel: Underdog Vs. Michael Vick.
Kyle Smith - New York Post
It's a harmless bore.
Roger Moore - Orlando Sentinel
Even at a lean 84 minutes, padded with a credit blooper reel, it seems long. If you've seen one flying dog, you've seen them all. Jay Leno's cameo appearance proves he's almost as big a publicity hound as Larry King.
Peter Howell - Toronto Star
Good one-liners and dog tricks, but no best in show.
Kirk Honeycutt - Hollywood Reporter
The movie's sloppiness is galling, especially given its target audience. It's one thing to feed grown-ups junk, and another to serve it to consumers too young to know they're being had.
Sam Adams - Los Angeles Times
Hank Sartin - Time Out
Joshua Rothkopf - Time Out
Tom Meek - Boston Phoenix
Underdog as a film is not totally worthless. It's a winner with kids, as is anything with a talking dog.
Kevin Carr - 7M Pictures
Underdog works best when spoofing superhero conventions, but the film goes to the dogs thanks to a drab story and frequent stabs at heartwarming bromides.
Tim Grierson - Screendaily
The essential cartooniness of the plot and the gags works against the rather lame attempt to lather on a message about reconciliation between father and son.
Steve Biodrowski - ESplatter
While this idea may have been enough to happily fill 25 minutes, the film version fails to effectively stretch it out to feature-length.
Saxon Bullock - Film4
Call me a kid at heart, but Underdog is the cutest doggone fantasy.
Urban Cinefile Critics - Urban Cinefile
At just over 80 minutes it feels not so much like a proper film as a piece of extended filler for slow afternoons on Disney's TV channels.
James Rocarols - BBC
...an affable, sporadically entertaining piece of work that's ultimately undone by its emphasis on relentlessly silly elements...
David Nusair - Reel Film Reviews
Despite the talent on show, there's little to distinguish this from any other bland family comedy.
Anna Smith - Empire Magazine
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
An ill-conceived and often irritating bout of Children's film fare...
Felix Vasquez Jr. - Cinema Crazed
Disney's charmless live-action resurrection of the beloved super-mutt [is] just a bunch of mercenary actors and technicians who can barely disguise their contempt for the film's screenplay
Bill Chambers - Film Freak Central
...rather dull and uninspired, lacking in imagination or humorous spark.
John J. Puccio - DVDTown.com
John J. Puccio - Movie Metropolis
par for the course in a town that sees every old idea as something waiting to be deconstructed, reinvented, or reimagined.
Bill Gibron - Filmcritic.com
A boring and uninspiring adaptation that lacks action and suffers from mostly static characters, Peter Dinklage as the nefarious Dr. Simon Barsinister being the notable exception.
Ryan Cracknell - Movie Views
Not too many new tricks left for the old Underdog.
Sandie Angulo Chen - Common Sense Media
There's no need to fear. "Underdog" brings cheer.
Linda Cook - Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)
The tag line is simply brilliant, but that's about the only thing remotely associated with this film that would classify as such.
Michael Dequina - TheMovieReport.com
Dean Essner - Screen International
The elements of the film don't quite mesh: The villains are cartoony, but [director] Du Chau aims for soggy family drama in his father-son story.
Marrit Ingman - Austin Chronicle
A very bad dog of a movie.
John Wirt - Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA)
...not as bad as it might have been...
Jim Lane - Sacramento News & Review
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
The film is a smug and contemptuous mess from beginning to end that is likely to bore little kids and aggravate any adult still holding fond memories of the character from their own childhoods.
Peter Sobczynski - eFilmCritic.com
Yet another misbegotten live-action remake of a beloved Saturday morning cartoon, Underdog is a negligible family film that's so blandly formulaic, it makes the original, '60s-era cartoon look downright edgy in comparison.
Timothy Knight - Reel.com
After a lovably dopey prologue culled from the TV cartoon, this live-action adaptation gets down to the business of entertaining tweens, earnestly and nonironically.
Joshua Rothkopf - Time Out New York
Oh, there's reason to fear. 'Underdog' the movie is here.
Christopher Smith - Bangor Daily News (Maine)
Exactly the movie you'd expect from the director of Racing Stripes and the writer of Zoom.
Ken Hanke - Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
A live-action version of the 1960s-70s cartoon "Underdog" seemed a really bad idea, but it turns out it was merely a bad idea.
Mark Dujsik - Mark Reviews Movies
The screenplay, tackled by three people, follows the formula of the show (and the genre in general) rather well. If only it wasn't so stale.
Michael Ferraro - Film Threat
The oddest thing is the movie's dumbed-down level of humor, which leans toward predictable dog-poop and butt-sniffing jokes.
Frank Lovece - Film Journal International
Just stick with a double feature of Babe and Superman. Now that's a family movie night.
Scott Weinberg - Cinematical
It's just average family entertainment with the normal messages: friendship, unconditional love, family, and believing in yourself.
Todd Hertz - Christianity Today
Whatever the intent, the result is unfit for humankind.
Scott Tobias - AV Club
It seems there are some things even Underdog can't conquer -- carelessness and mediocrity topping the list.
Glenn Whipp - Los Angeles Daily News
Cuteness can't carry an entire movie, and Underdog is short of actual funny stuff and affecting performances, to the extent that this Disney movie comes off like a Disney made-for-TV movie.
Jim Slotek - Jam! Movies
This seems to be another case of Hollywood figuring that kids aren't going to notice the difference between a well-made film and a sloppy, half-baked one.
Brian Webster - Apollo Guide
Saddled with shoddy storytelling, this is an Underdog in the saddest sense.
Chad Greene - Boxoffice Magazine
Underdog is so piecemeal it should come with a roll of duct tape. It's so desperate to be everything to everyone that it ends up being very little to nobody in particular.
Bill Gibron - PopMatters
A film like Underdog is best defined by its complete lack of distinction.
Rob Humanick - Slant Magazine
Seeing realistic animals in feats of derring-do - or kicking each other around, action-movie style - is more disturbing than cute.
Sean Means - Salt Lake Tribune
'Underdog' features some amusing antics by a very cute Beagle in the title role, but it's not quite the treat I expected.
Betty Jo Tucker - ReelTalk Movie Reviews
8-year olds will eat it up but adults probably will want to exit the theatre with, as Underdog might say, 'the speed of lightning and the roar of thunder!'
Pete Hammond - Maxim
Frederik Du Chau transforms the campy '60s and '70s cartoon into a mostly toothless, family-friendly action-comedy.
James Diers - E! Online
Serious movie standards aren't necessarily required in an entertainment like Underdog. Still, as with most movies, it's frustrating to watch Hollywood undercut the intelligence of its target audience.
John Monaghan - Detroit Free Press
Apparently, the idea of a beagle in a red sweater fighting diminutive Peter Dinklage wasn't enough to power the laugh department, so we have our hero cracking wise about everyday dog problems like eating vomit or poop.
Brian Orndorf - eFilmCritic.com
A children's movie about a superhero beagle that recycles material and themes we've seen far too often in Hollywood movies.
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat - Spirituality and Practice
The adults in Underdog appear to be having a really good time, and that helps the adults in the audience have a fairly good one.
Josh Larsen - Sun Publications (Chicago, IL)
About all the film offers is some bad CGI effect work, a bored-sounding Jason Lee providing the voice of the heroic canine and lots of dumb slapstick.
Jeff Vice - Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Coco Forsythe - Future Movies UK
Even the promising team of Peter Dinklage's mad scientist Simon Barsinister and Patrick Warburton's henchman Cad turns out to be a bust.
Jim Ridley - L.A. Weekly
If you set your expectations just low enough, or are an easily satisfied 8-year-old, you might have a bit of fun.
Ken Fox - TV Guide's Movie Guide
Dave White - Movies.com
I had a painless enough time. And so -- given a quiet Saturday, a stifling heat wave and a fretful kindergartener to contend with -- might you.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
Underdog, putting it mildly, lacks the sleekness and cunning of other, better kids' flicks, though it gains points for respecting, while modifying, its source material.
Gene Seymour - Newsday
There may be no need to fear now that Underdog is here, but there is no reason to feel very happy, either.
Nell Minow - Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
Hollywood once again demonstrates its ability to take a mediocre idea and destroy what little potential it had. They offer a graduate-level course in this skill at Disney University.
Eric D. Snider - EricDSnider.com
A big-hearted movie that delights in playing with the conventions of superhero pictures. In the same week when the insulting Bratz is also opening, it's a comparative godsend.
Dustin Putman - DustinPutman.com