Jack is a three-year-old chimpanzee who has been the subject of a long-term experiment by Dr. Kendall, a researcher who been teaching Jack to communicate through sign language. Jack, ... See full summary »
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In this spin-off of the Air Bud franchise, five pups follow an ice cream transport truck to a plane and end up flying with the ice cream shipment to Alaska. There they find a pup friend and a boy who needs five dogs for a big race.
Jack is a three-year-old chimpanzee who has been the subject of a long-term experiment by Dr. Kendall, a researcher who been teaching Jack to communicate through sign language. Jack, however, has not been making progress fast enough for Dr. Kendall's sponsor, Dr. Peabody, who has cut off his funding and sold Jack to a medical research lab. Afraid of what could happen to his simian friend, Dr. Kendall sneaks Jack out of his home in the lab; however, Jack is accidentally sent to Canada, where he gets loose and is discovered by Tara, a deaf girl who recognizes Jack's sign language. Jack has an even bigger surprise for Tara's older brother Steven; Jack scrambles onto the ice in the midst of practice for Steven's junior league hockey team, and he and his teammates discover the monkey has a natural talent for the game. With Jack on the team, Steven's team is on their way to a league championship, but Jack's notoriety attracts the unfortunate attention of Dr. Peabody, who are determined to ... Written by
As a future ASL interpreter and general Deaf culture enthusiast, I watch any movie I can find with sign language or Deaf characters. Imagine my shock when, not only was the character of Tara not played by a Deaf actress, she was not portrayed very well by the hearing one! I understand that this was a subplot, and probably not a very important one to most people (after all, there was an animal on screen! Doing human-y things!), but some accuracy could have been striven for. Of all the Deaf and hearing impaired children I have worked with and been friends with, not one of them signs with their mouth shut. In fact, ASL has a very strong facial element, involving mouth movement and some sounds. And any family that knew how to sign would hopefully not force their child to lipread at home. Even the best lipreader only gets about 70% of the words spoken compared to 100% of the words signed in the beautiful and eloquent language called ASL. If a movie-making team can't spend the time and effort to get a Deaf character right, they shouldn't include one at all. I appreciate they had to have someone who could communicate with the chimp, but they could have made up something much more believable than a semi-famous hearing actress trying to convince me she's Deaf. Like the chimp learning to talk for the role.
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