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  • Writer's pictureMatthew Rondina

Lyle, Lyle Crocodile Movie Review

A singing reptile! Dapper Jr. and I review Sony Picture's film adaptation of the classic children's book Lyle, Lyle Crocodile.

Sony Pictures' latest release, Lyle, Lyle Crocodile, is an adaptation of the popular 1965 children's storybook series of the same name. More specifically, it is the prequel to the kid's book The House on East 88th Street by Bernard Waber. The film, which was directed by Will Speck and Josh Gordon, does a good job of translating most of the charm of the original books onto the big screen. The movie stars Lyle, voiced by Shawn Mendes, alongside Javier Bardem, Constance Wu, Winslow Fegley, Scoot McNairy, and Brett Gelman.

A croc ready for broadway

The movie follows the mischievous adventures of Lyle, a singing crocodile who has come down with a bad case of stage fright. While trying to find a cure for his fear, Lyle ends up befriending the Primm family. The family just moved to New York City with their young son Josh. Like Lyle, the entire family is having difficulty adjusting to the big city environment and finding out how they fit in. When Josh and Lyle accidentally cross paths, the two quickly become friends. Lyle helps Josh and his family overcome their fears by teaching them how to embrace their inner croc. Together, Lyle and his newfound family put on a fun musical comedy that is sure to keep little ones entertained all the way through.

Cast and Direction

Lyle, Lyle Crocodile's cast is all-star with a lineup of Hollywood's A-listers. Shawn Mendes leads the charge as the voice of Lyle. Mendes brings the same amount of energy and enthusiasm to Lyle that he does to his music and it really pays off for the overall story. He makes the character likable and relatable, even when he's causing trouble. Mendes is joined by a cast that includes Javier Bardem, Constance Wu, Winslow Fegley, Scoot McNairy, and Brett Gelman.

In terms of performances, I have to say my personal standouts are Bardem and Mendes. Both work really well together and have great chemistry. The directing duo of Will Speck and Josh Gordon have previously worked together on The Switch and Blades of Glory. While I don't think Lyle, Lyle Crocodile is their best work, it is still a solid effort.

Lyle hit some of his scales

While the movie's visuals are colourful and charming, the overall story feels disjointed and a little too formulaic. The film also lacks the heart and warmth of the original book series. Nonetheless, children will likely enjoy the film's many slapstick humour moments. One aspect of the movie's overall message I liked was about following your dreams. It's a good overall message, but it gets a little lost in some of the crocodile's antics. The movie also lacks some of the charm and whimsy of the original storybooks. I found it focused on too many characters and some of the story threads just seemed to be "wedged in" at times. However, kids will still enjoy seeing a wild, zany crocodile on the big screen. Again, I wanted to share my opinion, but I am not the target audience of the film. I brought an expert along with to screen the film: my 8-year-old-son Dapper Jr.

A kid's take on Lyle, Lyle Crocodile

My son Dapper Jr. came along for the Lyle, Lyle Crocodile screening experience. He's 8 years old and loved the movie. He found it hilarious and enjoyed all of the silly crocodile antics. He also liked the friendship between Lyle and Josh and thought it was very relatable. He also liked the fact that there weren't too many "sad times" in the film and it had a lot of great big musical numbers. I think his favourite parts of the film were the slapstick parts, Lyle put on a one-man show at the end of the film. When asked about what he didn't like, Dapper Jr. said that he wished the scene where Lyle gets separated from his friends was a little less "emotional". Overall, Dapper Jr. thought the film was a solid "9 out of 10." He would recommend it to kids who like crocodiles, music, and comedies.

So there you have it! The expert opinion of an 8-year-old on Lyle, Lyle Crocodile. All in all, he would recommend the film to other kids his age.

Soundtrack and Visuals

The music in Lyle, Lyle Crocodile is catchy and fun. Shawn Mendes' performances are undoubtedly the highlight of the soundtrack. The visual effects are colourful and charming, and the CG animation work used to bring Lyle to life is detailed and brings the character to life. The songs are sure to get stuck in your head long after the movie is over. Will Speck and Josh Gordon do a good job of visually bringing the world of the book to life on the big screen.

Final Thoughts on Lyle, Lyle Crocodile

Lyle, Lyle Crocodile is a fun and charming movie that the whole family can enjoy. The film's message of acceptance is especially relevant in today's world. If you are looking for a feel-good movie to watch with your kids, this is one worth checking out. However, if you are expecting a faithful adaptation of the beloved book series, you may be disappointed. Nonetheless, the film is a worthy addition to the Lyle, Lyle Crocodile franchise.

What did you think of Lyle, Lyle Crocodile? Let us know in the comments below!


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