Stuck in on a dull summer's day? What better way to keep the little tykes entertained than to haul them along to the cinema to see a pack of cats and dogs fight like, well, cats and dogs? But beware; unless you are under the age of 10, this feline frenzy will fail to produce a giggle from even the most avid animation/animal lover out there. Warning; better keep that iPod handy if you want to keep your sanity.

In the picturesque hills of San Francisco, cats and dogs are struggling to save the planet from the feline grasps of former MEOWS agent Kitty Galore (Midler). Not only is the hairless pet planning on attacking her former comrades with an army of furry cats, but her master plan involves a device that will mark the end of canines' reign as man's best friend forever...

Having been moved from kennel to kennel for years, police dog Diggs (Marsden) is finally happy with his human partner in crime fighting, Officer Shane (O'Donnell). But when Diggs accidentally blows up a shop his career looks over, or so he thinks. Deciding that he is the only dog to hunt down Kitty, agents Butch (Nolte) and Lou (Harris) give the rogue animal the chance to finish her off before her grand plan is unleashed on the world. But the only way Kitty can be stopped is if cats and dogs forget their long-time feud and form an unlikely alliance.

Bearing in mind that this film is for the younger generation, my expectations were pretty low (dogs and cats in a bitter war against evil? Where have we heard this before?). However, even with such an appealing cast, '...Kitty Galore' fails to deliver an ounce of humour or entertainment for adults to warrant the hype. What were Neil Patrick Harris and Bette Midler thinking, lending their famous voices to a film that should have gone straight to DVD.

The storyline could be deemed too complex for the film's target audience and gets more ridiculous and confusing as it goes along. We've had our fair share of talking animal movies - 'Doctor Dolittle' and 'Babe' - but try as it might, this pet espionage adventure flounders where its predecessors succeeded.

The timing couldn't have been any worse, either. With 'Toy Story 3' and 'Shrek Forever After' topping the box office lately, the flaws in '...Kitty Galore' are even more evident. Cashing in on the 3D craze, the effects added to the film are minimal and don't add much, except perhaps an extra euro or two to your ticket.

That said, the film sets out to do what it intended - entertain younger kids. However, with the promise of a sequel, how many lives can these cats and dogs have left?

Sarah Carty

Listen to the 'Framerate' review of 'Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore' from RTÉ Choice.