Page 1 of 3
This Disney animated 2-pack probably should have remained lost....
Buena Vista / 176 Minutes / 2001-2003 / Rated G / Street Date: June 11, 2013
In Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Michael J. Fox plays Milo James Thatch, a bumbling archeologist who is determined to complete his late grandfather's work. Seems old grandpa had been trying to find the lost city of Atlantis, but unfortunately died before he could complete his quest. Milo believes the legendary city exists, but just can't get the funding required from the museum heads where he toils away in a basement laboratory. Milo had lost all hope, until the mysterious Helga Sinclair (Claudia Christian) shows up with an offer he can't refuse. Her employer, the eccentric billionaire Preston B. Whitmore (John Mahoney), had worked with Milo's grandfather for years during his expedition, and also believes that Atlantis exists, and needs Milo to help him finish his search.
Of course, Milo jumps at the chance, and is given a wild set of mercenaries to lead his expedition off the shores of Iceland, where the great city is rumored to lie. James Garner plays Commander Rourke, while the supporting crew is just as wild. Vinny Santorini (Don Novello, aka Father Guido Sarducci) is the demolition expert, Dr. Joshua Sweet (Phil Morris) is the team physician, and Audrey Ramirez (Jacqueline Obradors) plays the quick-witted mechanic. Also along for the ride are the late Jim Varney as Cookie, Florence Stanley as Wilhelmina Packard the droll communications officer, and Corey Burton as "Mole," the team's mineralogists, and resident, well, I don't know...
Atlantis: Milo’s Returnis quite similar to every Disney direct-to-video sequel, in that it tries to squeeze out any last dollar from one of their big-budget box office failures. Yes, this is another halfhearted attempt at a "franchise," not that I expected greatness from Atlantis: Milo's Return. Alas, even judged against other Disney direct-to-video fare, this one is pretty poor and close to unwatchable.
A short time has passed since the first Atlantis and bookworm Milo is enjoying the good life with his sexy Atlantean wife Kida. As they begin to rebuild Atlantis, they are immediately reunited with all of the characters from the first film. Can this meeting have a deeper purpose than the gathering of old friends? Of course! It seems there is trouble on the shores above and only Milo and the gang can save the day.
Borrowing from just about any classic or near-classic story that takes place in the ocean, our heroes plod through adventure after adventure, either of the action or comedy variety, until the good guys win. Certainly, little kids who dug the first film will certainly enjoy this one from the back seat of the mini-van, but any self-respecting animation fan will no doubt steer clear. All of the voice talent is back again, save Michael J. Fox and the recently departed Jim Varney. Given the limited scope of the sequel, the cast does the best they can with what little they have to work with. In typical direct-to-video style, what you see is what you get in Milo's Return. If you've got little ones and need a timewaster, this will probably do.