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Beethoven's 4th is basically a sad attempt continuing a series that needs
neither another movie, nor another direct to video spin-off.
The movie seems more of a wishbone type wannabe, with its simplistic plot that doesn't even completely make sense and silly sight gags. While some of the movie is a bit funny, like Judge Reinhold trying to get Michalangelo (Beethoven's look-a-like) to behave like Beethoven, the movie is one to be skipped.
I'm not sure if 3 and 4 were filmed back to back, since this movie does carry a copyright date of 2000 on it. However, Beethoven's 3rd wasn't even theatre releasable, so the decision had to have been to make 2 direct to videos.
Anyway, Judge Reinhold should try better choices, at least ones that don't have him drinking out of a toilet.
To anybody who hasn't seen any Beethoven Movies, I would strongly recommend watching the first two great movies, and then stopping! Beethoven and Beethoven's 2nd were excellent movies, with the great actors Charles Grodin, Bonnie Hunt, and Nichole Tom! The third and fourth didn't have any of these actors, had dumb plots, different characters which were acted poorly, and were very dull! Hasn't anybody ever heard of quitting while you're ahead!
In this installment of the apparently endless "Beethoven"-series, Beethoven, the bad-behaving dog gets switched with another, well-behaving dog owned by some rich folks. Laughing already, kids? Now think, what hilarious consequences can this have?What's the first thing you thought about? Yep, it's in this movie. Now think of a second thing. Yep, totally in it. If you can think of a third thing, you're able to write a better screenplay, which means nothing. In the meantime, some bad guys try to do some thing of some sorts, probably get a job in a better movie, like "Home Alone 7" or "Kazaam", but the dog saves the day or whatever. Look at what Judge Reinhold is willing to do to pay his bills these days. Or better yet, don't. Lassie would turn around in his garden.
If Ludwig Van Beethoven had lived to see such artistic genius be created with a character with his name, he would have wept of joy. For this film is so sweet that i'm gonna crap myself. an incredible performance by digby the talking dog as beethoven is just one of the many highlights of this event. Beethoven seems to start acting strange, he's not up to his usual schemes, and judge reinhold (in an incredible performance as the father) wonders what is wrong. They soon find out that beethoven has been switched by a better fartknocking dog. The sorrow that the family goes through is shocking and unbelievably real. I also think Rob Shneider would be excellently cast as the father, or any role. Also the film did not have as many fart jokes as i would have hoped for. We all know that what holds together films is the fart jokes, and i believe that Rob Schneider could have provided enough fart jokes for our satisfaction. But despite the lack of Rob Schneider and fart jokes, this movie was a great ride with an ending so powerful that it changed me as a human being.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Beethoven the St. Bernard still lives with Richard Newton, brother of George Newton, and his family. Wife Beth was going to a job interview while kids Brennan and Sara start school, which left Richard home alone with Beethoven who was constantly getting into trouble. He ate out of the trash, he drank out of the toilet, he was a thorn in the Newtons' side. Meanwhile, not too far away at the Sedgewick family mansion, lived their St. Bernard who was the complete opposite of Beethoven. His name was Michelangelo. He was obedient, well-behaved and could even use the toilet! The Sedgewick family were always busy. Reginald was struggling with a hand-held modem while Martha handled constant social engagements. Daughter Madison felt so ignored. Back at the Newton's, Richard had taken up painthing pictures for greeting cards. He had just finished a wonderful work of art. Unfortunately, Beethoven chased a cat around the garage, thus ruining all of Richard's art. Richard finally put his foot down in saying the dog had to go! Brennan and Sara didn't want that so they found an ad for an obedience school in the paper and enrolled Beethoven right away.
The obedience school was run by Sgt. Rutledge, who handled some tough cadets in the military and was confident he could handle a slobbering, 150 pound St. Bernard. He was wrong. Beethoven towed him all through the obstical course. Meanwhile, butler Simmons was taking Michelangelo to be groomed when suddenly a bumbling thug, Nigel, stole Michelangelo, who ran away from him. Meanwhile, Beethoven laid eyes on a hot dog vendor's cart and ran for it. He caused the cart to roll down hill so he ran after it. It crashed into the merry go-round which Beethoven boarded. Michelangelo got on too and when the ride was over, Simmons took Beethoven, thinking he was Michelangelo, home while Sara and Brennan took Michelangelo, thinking he was Beethoven, home. The Newtons noticed a significant change in "Beethoven". When Sara dropped her napkin, not only did "Beethoven" pick it up, but he folded it! Richard soon began longing for the drooling, sloppy old Beethoven. Meanwhile at the Sedgewicks, "Michelangelo" was disobeying orders and drooling on the floor; Richard struggled to bring "Beethoven" back to his slobbering roots by demonstrating how to chase the mail man, dig through the garbage and drink from the toilet; Simmons the butler was in cahoots with Nigel the thug. They plotted to kidnap "Michelangelo" and ransom him and they pulled it off. They made the phone call, requesting $250,000 to be delivered to Civic Center Park at 4:00 PM.
The Newtons went to "Beethoven"'s obedience school graduation ceremony, while the Sedgewicks arrived to meet the kidnapper with the $$$. At that moment, Nigel appeared and ran from the FBI while Simmons tried to make off with the money. The real Beethoven chased after Simmons while Michelangelo received his diploma from Sgt. Rutledge and rejoined the Sedgewicks while Beethoven was reunited with the Newtons and they went home together. As for brothers Simmons and Nigel, they go to jail, quarreling with one another.
Here's YET ANOTHER Beethoven sequel. Come on, enough already! You're really making 1 and 2 look bad! Beethoven's 4th wasn't that great of a movie but it proved, in some small way, better than Beethoven's 3rd. That movie was awful!! Terrible! Judge Reinhold was good in both films. I didn't like Julia Sweeney or the kids in either! The bad guys in 4th were better than the ones in 3rd. I prey that this will be the final Beethoven sequel, however I heard a rumor that there may be a 5th. Why does Universal do this to their family films? Look what they've done to The Land Before Time: giving it a seemingly endless parade of sequels! But anyway, just stuck with Beethoven's 1st and 2nd. SKIP 3RD!!! It is, as the French say, LE GARBAGEé! As for Beethoven's 4th, diehard fans of the series probably won't like it, but the kids definitely will! This series has gone to the dogs! Literally!
All I can say is Beethoven must be spinning in his grave that his name is even used for this piece of crap. I know if it was my name I'd haunt the damn person whom created this turkey. How many more are they going to make before it dawns on them that too much is not always a good thing. Hello McFly! This film isn't even amusing to the little kiddies. My niece fell a sleep during it in the first half hour at that. The young young toddler kiddies might like it but anyone over the age of 4 watch out. Borefest! Lets put it this way Judge Reinhold couldn't suck more in a flick although give the D list actor some credit it was better than the 3rd which really doesn't say much since both are equally stupid. The acting by everyone was horrible except Mark Chapman...I have a small crush on him. I have to pity him though for appearing in this. God,what some people will do for money. Next it will be Beethoven the pimp! I better shut up knowing Hollywood and it's obsession with killing a franchise to death with crap infested sequels they just might. I haven't seen the 5th one yet but I can honestly tell you this. If they so much make one more I think I'm gonna puke.
Like I said before, my cousins and I had a Beethoven night, I was
looking forward to the sequels, but after the sadness that was the
third Beethoven, I had something even more to look forward too.
Somehow, Beethoven is still with the brand new Newtons, I guess George,
Alice, and their kids were looking for some kind of good excuse to get
rid of Beethoven.
Basically, Beth and Richard want to get rid of Beethoven due to poor habits of drooling and destroying, but the kids want to keep him so they secretly take Beethoven to obedience classes. But Richard finds out that Beethoven inspires him to create his best art pieces ever. There is another family who is more wealthy and also have a St. Bernard, Michaelangelo, and kidnappers want him so they can get a ransom, not that much money if you ask me, but Beethoven and Michaelanglo get mixed up when they're both outside and end up with the wrong families.
Beethoven's 4th is a pretty sorry excuse for a film, but it was a little better than the third Beethoven movie. My cousins really enjoy these films, so like I said before, these films must be doing something right. For a family film, it wouldn't be too bad, but for me, this was a pretty silly movie.
Beethoven's 4th did have one or two funny moments, but is a mediocre third sequel. I really liked the first movie, it was adorable, funny and fun to watch, the second film while a slight step down was entertaining and the third was merely mediocre. This, while not the worst sequel ever, Home Alone 4, NeverEnding Story 3 and Secret Of NIMH 2:Timmy To The Rescue all were bastardisations of their originals, was at best mediocre and just wasn't my cup of tea. Back to Beethoven's 4th, Beethoven himself is funny, as is his counterpart Michaelangelo, and the performances while nothing special were acceptable. And I liked the big house. However, as a sequel it is unmemorable, and falls into the trap of being predictable. The plot is basically a canine rehash of The Prince and the Pauper, and the reason why it doesn't work is because it has been done many times before; Disney with Mickey Mouse, numerous adaptations of the classic Mark Twain tale and the sequel Garfield 2: A Tale of Two Kitties(one of the few sequels out there that was better than the original). The script was poor, and the direction was plodding in places. All in all, don't expect the original, it is a substandard sequel, that could have been so much better. 3/10 for Beethoven and the actors. Bethany Cox
"Beethoven's 4th" is the kind of movie that makes one wonder what the point
was of the film, other than cashing in one something that once
Judge Reinhold returns to the role of Richard Newton, seen in the 2000 straight-to-video (and rightly so!) "Beethoven's 3rd" flop. Julia Sweeney, once famous for her place on "Saturday Night Live," reprises the Beth Newton Persona, and there are two very bad-acting children in the film, also.
This awful sequel deals with Richard Newton watching Beethoven for his brother (once played by the much-better Charles Grodin) while they go on a family vacation. Unfortunately for both Richard and the audience, the millionth time Beethoven drinks out of the toilet bowl it makes everyone a bit mad, so they take him to training class, where he accidentally switches places with a rich man's (Matt McCoy) Saint Bernard without anyone noticing. When Rich Man's dog comes back to the Newton's, they are astonished at the fact that he is finally obeying his masters...the only problem is that now Beethoven is over at the Rich Man's House, caught with The Rich Man's Snooty Daughter and the Quiet Elderly Butler. How will Beethoven ever get back?
Quite honestly, I couldn't care less whether Beethoven makes it home or gets run over by a steam-roller. Let's put it this way: I really enjoyed the original "Beethoven" film written by the King of the Eighties, John Hughes. The second was a bit contrived, and was cashing in on the original a bit, but it still had its moments. This mind-numbingly bad sequel, however, is a follow-up to an already mind-numbingly bad third installment. By this time, I've seen so much Beethoven I don't really care what happens.
Perhaps if Charles Grodin was in it I'd still enjoy the series.
Perhaps if the script was intelligent and witty, and not the equivalent of EVERY family film that comes out nowadays, I'd like it.
But somewhere along the line in this world of cashing-in on superior originals, "Beethoven" lost the charm, wit and talent it once had and is now a snore-fest. Really, it went from a pleasant and enjoyable family comedy to a kids' movie with dumb dialogue, dumb situations, dumb characters, etc...the whole dumb works. It's almost like it's a whole other film series.
Or is it?
"Beethoven's 4th" gets 1/5 from me--it's weak, pathetic, has lost its charm (two sequels ago), and is filled with kiddie-film material and ultimately no intelligence whatsoever. The film execs who gave the go-ahead on this one were looking for one thing: Money.
Avoid this flop and see an intelligent family film, like 2001's "Monsters, Inc." That movie was good.
This one isn't.
1/5 stars -
Although rather less elevated than some of the previous Beethoven
movies, I did appreciate the rather transparent themes of the film. It
was impeccable that no part of the plot was left to imagination or
surprise. After all, the fourth title of the series has quite a lot to
live up to. I must however, be quite honest and admit that when Mrs.
Newton stood in front of a mirror in one of the opening scenes in an
outfit of mustard yellow, and said to Mr. Newton, "It makes me look
fat! doesn't it?" I sided with her rather than her husband. She did
look a bit like an overstuffed Twinkie. Imagine my sheer joy when
Beethoven slobbered all over it, proving once again, that he is an
irascible central character to the plot, with obviously, finer taste
than many viewers would give him credit for.
I rather appreciated that every nuance of the film was explained very plainly, or over-explained, as it gave the viewer time to possibly catch a brief nap and still be fully informed upon awakening. As I said, it was very possible, without being clairvoyant, to guess that when Beethoven, the rather "ill-mannered," or "working class," dog, was shown juxtaposed against Michelangelo, the "well-groomed," and "civilized," dog (who, by the way, lived in a mansion and wiped his paws on doormats), somehow, the two would end up switching places, with amusing mayhem as the consequence!
I was especially intrigued when Mrs. Newton, in a subtle bit of foreshadowing, exclaimed, believably, as I saw it, "There's no house in the world big enough for that dog!(in reference to Beethoven)" I also appreciated the fact, that the next shot portrayed Michelangelo sitting in his king-size bed in that giant mansion of his. It didn't keep me guessing, but yet, assured me that said mayhem would ensue. The only thing I truly pondered was the method of the switch. Unbelievably, it was during a scene where Beethoven chased a cart of hot dogs down a sidewalk in a park, while simultaneously, an attempt was made to kidnap Michelangelo in the same park that the two were mixed up.
The said plot gave the Newtons time to finally relax a little, with a well-behaved dog around. Unfortunately, the other family, The Sedgwicks (and in this case, "Sedgwick" is not the name of a wealthy household's butler, but the name of the couple themselves)find that Beethoven's antics, in fact, rid the household of it's overly-stuffy atmosphere, and bring the family closer together. Unfortunately, Michelangelo's good behavior is almost too unnerving for Beethoven's real owners, though the children think this is because of the fact that they've secretly enrolled Beethoven in obedience training classes. Luckily the two dogs are switched back during Beethoven's graduation ceremony, which must have been quite a task to film.
The whole class of dogs have red graduation caps on, and it's quite an affair. "Everlasting," is the word Mrs. Newton herself would use, I'm sure, if she were to describe it. However, Beethoven foils Michelangelo's would-be kidnappers in the end, recovering $250,000 for the grateful Sedgwicks, though wreaking havoc on the carefully contrived dog graduation. The two are switched back without the knowledge of the owners, who in the end, pull their cars up to the same stop sign at the same time, in one final shot.
Though the movie seems fairly cut and dry, I wanted, for a moment to review the themes. If you happen to be wealthy beyond your wildest dreams, remember that money cannot buy you the closeness of family. Alternatively remember that sometimes a neat and tidy house is less important than the love and nurturing of pets, however large and cumbersome they might be. I happily give this film two stars out of ten, although I am uncertain whether I will watch, "Beethoven's 5th" anytime soon. I'd say that that particular film is probably on the same priority list as, "Home Alone 3," or as a friend of mine would call it, "Some Kid Somewhere Snowy Does The Same Thing All Over Again." Thank you so much for reading.
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