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Roadside Romeo secretly released in L.A.

This almost escaped our notice… but not quite! Disney has quietly opened Roadside Romeo today (we posted the trailer back in May). It’s “Absolutely ‘howl’arious!” says the India Times in a four-star review.

Should you wish to see this flick, it’s playing at the NAZ 8 Cinemas in Artesia, with English subtitles. The theatre is located at 6440 E. South Street, in Lakewood, CA. It’s playing all week at 5:00 6:00 7:00 8:00 9:00 10:00 and 11:00pm.

Move over Wall•E – Roadside Romeo is now qualifed for for an Oscar nomination!

  • Terry

    This is an animated Bollywood flick. Presumably it’s not 3 hours long, but otherwise has all of the strengths and weaknesses of such.

  • Lindsay

    As downright silly as this film looks, I’m honestly quite curious about it – a mainstream CG film that’s a fusion of Disney and Bollywood. I really hope I get to see it in some form – the theatre is doubtful though. Any bets on whether this will make it to Blu-ray Disc? ;-P

  • Pete

    That dog has a strange paw/hand :/

    It’d be interested to see what’s coming out of india seeing as animation over there is apparently growing at an exponential rate.

  • Dr.Pepper

    Howl’arious, I’m sure.

  • sooper clown

    I think the image says it all…

  • Kim

    Yeesh, I hope I don’t sound mean, but that looks terrible. The trailer where the doggies are rapping like gangsters (with the lighted words “COOL” in the background) just cracked me up.

  • Kim

    Oh, one more thing, any idea as to why Disney released it so quietly? I’ve never even heard of this movie until just now.

  • Andrew Kieswetter

    Besides Wall-E and this,I also think Kung Fu Panda and the upcoming
    Bolt are Best Animated Feature material as well.(Ponyo will have to wait till next year)

  • I’m an Indian and I saw the film yesterday. I was going in with low expectations: I didn’t like the designs (quadripeds standing on two legs is kinda awkward), but I was still curious. Unlike many Indian “animated” features, which are sometimes more like animatics, the trailers for Roadside Romeo showed full animation and some real acting, for a change. Also I was interested in how local this film would really be.

    I can’t believe I’m saying this: I actually enjoyed myself. It’s easy to make fun of this film, but when you realize it’s not trying to be more than it really is, you can’t help HAVING fun instead. The story is very cliched – a rich bratty dog named Romeo gets left on the streets of Mumbai when his family leaves for London. He befriends the street dogs, falls in love and hoodwinks the local bull dog villain (Charlie Anna, he literally steals the show).

    What it lacks in terms of plot, the film makes up for with some great voice acting and insightful humour. The gags here are not translated from Hollywood, but rather from live-action Bollywood. The characters talk like stereotypes definitley, but INDIAN stereotypes, and that is (in a small way) a step forward.

    The film has been written and directed by former (failed) Bollywood actor, Jugal Hansraj, and he actually does a good job of balancing comedy with interesting characters. The animation was done by Tata Elxsi – – and while character design and art direction do take a back seat, the animation itself is pretty good, without a hint of motion capture.

    I’m pretty sure that by having Disney involved in this, the standards have definitely been raised. Made over a two-and-a-half year period, it seems to have come along pretty quickly.

    My only hope is that this film, while bordering on mediocre, opens up avenues for better big-budget animated features here in India.

    I know this has kind of turned into a mini-review I’ll just finish by saying, if you’re a Bollywood fan – go see it. Otherwise a lot of the in-jokes will fly past.

    -Rohit Iyer

  • An article about the animation of Roadside Romeo –

  • greg m

    it’s unreal how Disney have allowed their logo and name to be associated with this!! There USED to be a certain standard needed and the Studio was very protective of their brand, thus the invention of Touchstone and the like – but this no longer seems to be the case. John L., what’s the story here??

  • “Move over Wall•E – Roadside Romeo is now qualified for for an Oscar nomination!”
    Are you *expletive*kidding me?!!

  • Liam Scanlan

    It’s playing in other places, too! Places such as Chicago, Illinois and LA in AMC theatres.

  • Pedro Nakama

    Well if the India Times says it’s good you gotta go see it!

  • Altred Ego

    It’s funny that people think THIS is a dilution of the “Disney” brand. Where were they during “Home on the Range” or “The Wild”?

    Disney stands for cash and Bollywood is the largest film industry in the world. Makes perfect sense to me.


  • Liam – If you, or anyone, can send us the names and locations of other theaters playing Roadside Romeo in the U.S. this week, we’d appreciate it.

  • Why

    why in hell would wall-e be nominated for an oscar. it was crap.
    Hopefully this flick has more “entertainment” value.

    I wouldn’t mind any flick nominated for an oscar, kungfu panda or this. Definitely not lousy wall-e.

  • Tom Pope

    There’s a decent, even-handed (as always) review in today’s New York Times.

  • Terry

    Texas Theaters:

    Cinemark Tinseltown 17 – Austin

    Bollywood Cinema 6
    2703 Hwy 6 South, Houston, TX 77082
    (who knew Houston had a cinema just for Bollywood movies?)

    Everest Theatres (Hollywood Theaters – MacArthur Marketplace 16)
    8505 Walton Blvd, Irving, TX 75061

    FunAsia Richardson 6
    1210 East Beltline Road, Richardson, TX 75081

  • I’m not bothered that Disney puts their name on this…if they put any sort of financial backing into something, they are entitled too. And with my expectations pretty low now-a-days for what Disney makes in their own house, it’s nice to see them supporting animation from other countries. Animation for Romeo looks a little sub-par, but it does come across as pure Bollywood (and I kinda like how all the characters look…really Indian!). I really appreciated what Rohit said as well on this film (I’ve watched “low” films at times too and have had fun as well), which I can’t quite say for Why’s comments…learn to leave some more professional words next time and explain yourself.

  • My guess is that this is largely for Indians living in the US who want to see something from their country about their country . . . or something like that.

  • Steve Gattuso

    Mr. Thomas,

    Since the movie is being shown in Los Angeles and New York City during 2008, it certainly does qualify under AMPAS rules for Oscar nomination. Whether it will actually be submitted for it, much less get one, is entirely up to Yash Raj & Disney.

    Other screenings –
    Naz 8 Fremont
    39160 Paseo Padre Pkwy., Fremont, CA, 94538
    (510) 797-2000
    1:00 2:00 3:00 4:00 5:00 6:00 7:00 8:00 9:00 10:00 11:00

    There’s also Naz 8 theaters in San Jose and Fresno, though I can’t seem to find their details.

    New York:
    Phoenix Adlabs – The ImaginAsian Theater
    239 East 59th Street, New York, NY, USA
    (212) 371-6682
    1:30 4:00 6:30pm

    Phoenix Theatres Columbia Park Stadium 12
    3125 Kennedy Blvd, North Bergen, NJ, USA
    (201) 865-1600
    12:15 2:30 4:50 7:05 9:20pm

    FunAsia Devon
    6341 North McCormick Boulevard, Chicago, IL, USA
    (773) 604-4071
    1:00 4:00 7:00 10:00pm

    Galaxy Peachtree Funplex 8
    6135 Peachtree Parkway, Norcross, GA, USA
    (770) 448-7002
    2:15 4:45 7:15 9:45pm

    Cinemark Tinseltown 17 – Austin
    5501 South Interstate 35, Austin, TX, USA
    (800) 32632646-1136#
    3:00 5:15 7:30 9:45pm

    More posts as I find them.

  • Mick Mousehole

    Outsourcing killed American animation years ago. This is a new nail in an already buried coffin, to use a non-Indian metaphor.

  • Jason

    ***There’s a decent, even-handed (as always) review in today’s New York Times.***


    Thanks for the laugh.

  • Brew Reader

    This reminds me of Valiant…

  • Tom

    You can’t outsource taste.

  • Iain

    It was secretley released over here in Vancouver as well in one theatre in Surrey. I saw it, and the musical moments were pretty fun but the movie itself was pretty weak in a goofy Bollywood way.

  • Henry

    “without a hint of motion capture.”

    The movie, maybe–but this trailer is LOADED with it. Not my bag of tea.

  • Don

    I see a bunch of tight a**** here. The same kind who disqualified (or still do!) rap as a music because it wasn’t catered to TOM’s “taste”. Basically “ANYTHING” they don’t understand, or is it they don’t wanna understand?

    Either way this is not made for Bollywood haters, The humor is so much attached to the language and Bollywood.

    I never thought I’d say but increasingly I am proud bollywood has unique taste in this increasingly homogeneous world. Laga B.C tadka bollywood ka!

    And as for Disney “Company”, they are like any other capitalistic thing, no morals, no values, If they see enough money in it, I can ask them to lick my b****

    I tried to say my truth but did I go over for CartoonBrew’s “sensibilities”? ;)

  • Dan

    It looks like that “Crazy like a fox” commercial. Those aren’t the early Bolt designs, right? I kid, I kid.

  • captain murphy

    It looks like Furry Fan Fic. Not that I would know that that looks like. But a bit too anthropomorphized. Might as well be mo-capped.

  • I loved the movie and Charlie Anna rocks in the movie. More so, as he says in the movie, “easta, westa, Charlie Anna besta” He was down right hilarious from his semi-abusive baskets to giving the autograph. Even Romeo’s gang was ultra cool, specially Interval and Half english, they had some amazing lines.

  • I think the movie is superb . It is doing good business in India.

    Only thing is that the dog are not as white as the Americans.

  • Jeff

    I have to admit that even I was curious about this one, and I’m not Indian. I do remember seeing a couple promo posters for it much earlier in the year, and I assumed it was going to be mass-released like most everything else that Disney releases to theaters. Quite surprised it’s so limited. I do have an interest in seeing it, but the closest theater to me is the Naz 8 in Fremont, CA. Quite surprised that not a single theater in San Francisco is playing it.

    I wonder though…will this be released to DVD eventually in Region 1 format? I would like to think so considering it IS playing in very limited locations across the country. Guess I’ll just have to wait until it’s out on DVD to see it then. Fremont is ridiculously out of the way for me.

  • It looks like The Lady and the Tramp for the 21st century!

  • Steve Gattuso

    “It looks like Furry Fan Fic. Not that I would know that that looks like. ”

    Do tell… o_o

  • Chris Sobieniak

    Much like “El Arca”, I see many furries flocking to this one if they get the chance!

  • Oh, come on! Let the furries have their cake and eat it. :)

    While I wouldn’t exactly call myself a “furry” (maybe I’m in denial!), I do enjoy anthropomorphic stuff a great deal. And based on the trailers, the animation & designs don’t look half-bad! I’m also a big dog fan. So I’d like to see this.

    There’s also something about Laila (the female dog)’s countenance that looks very 50s/60s design-like, IMHO.

  • Eric Graf

    Well, I drove to Fremont and saw the thing. And the reviewers above nailed it. It’s an animated send-up of Bollywood, and if you (like me) aren’t well-versed in your Bollywood, you’ll find yourself feeling left out of the jokes, and left with a movie that seems to serve mostly as an excuse for its musical numbers, which unfortunately aren’t as plentiful as they should be. They’re the best part.

    The plotting is herky-jerky, and they make not the slightest attempt to nail down the characters so they behave consistently throughout the movie.

    The animation is barely north of Hoodwinked level, and the character designs are hideous IMHO, but having seen some other Indian animated features, just trust me – it’s a huge step up.

    Despite not having seen a lot of Bollywood, I have seen some, and can say that it’s a lot more fun with live actors.

    Running time is about 90 minutes, including a pointless 5-minute intermission at the 55-minute mark. It’s in Hindi with frequent English phrases tossed in, and well-done English subtitles.

    Despite how negative I sound, I did enjoy the movie. It’s totally different from any animated feature I’d seen before, and I appreciate that. And it certainly did have its moments, most of them musical. It’s worth checking out.

    Oh, and if you’re a furry, you HAVE to see it. Catch a plane if necessary.

    By the way, for those asking about the limited release … it’s not Disney releasing it in the US, it’s Yash Raj Films. It’s strictly for the Bollywood specialty circuit.