Musical based on Hugh Lofting's books about a 19th century veterinary surgeon. Doctor Dolittle, who is an expert in animal languages, but finds that his ability to 'talk to the animals' puts him into a mental asylum. He manages to escape and begins a journey in search of the great pink sea snail in the South Seas. The film won Oscars for visual effects and the song 'Talk to the Animals'.
So, they let both Rex Harrison and Anthony Newley sing. This 1968 family musical is classier than the 1998 Eddie Murphy remake, with all of its scatological humor. This won a couple of Oscars (Best Song, Best Effects) and was nominated for seven more, including Best Picture. At the time of release, however, this was a box-office dud. Based (in part) on the magical Hugh Lofting book, it begins in Puddleby-by-the-Marsh, England, from which the world-renowned veterinarian Dolittle (Harrison) begins his quest for a giant pink sea snail. Children should find this enjoyable for its exotic creatures, such as the Pushme-Pullyou. Most adults may not agree as readily, although some of us consider this a guilty pleasure. --Rochelle O'Gorman