Jeri Jacquin

Currently on Digital and available on 4K Ultra HD, Bluray and DVD is family fun with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and directors Will Speck and Josh Gordon with LYLE, LYLE CROCODILE.

Hector P. Valenti (Javier Bardem) finds a baby crocodile in a pet store and discovers – he can sing! Giving him the name Lyle, he begins to think that he can create an act that will make him rich beyond belief. Living in a beautiful Victorian brownstone in New York City, Hector uses it to put up the money to stage an audition but Lyle (vocals by Shawn Mendes) gets a mean case of stage fright.

Having to leave home to make money, Hector leaves Lyle. Months pass by when Mr. Primm (Scoot McNairy) and Mrs. Primm (Constance Wu) move into the house. Their son Josh (Winslow Fegley) is having a difficult time with the change and in making new friends. After a mugger introduces himself to Josh, Lyle introduces himself to the mugger! The two become friends and Josh loves that Lyle can sing.

The one thing he has to do is make sure his parents don’t find out about Lyle, but when they do, something wonderful happens to the family. Then Hector returns once again wanting Lyle to try to get on stage. Lyle doesn’t mind singing for the Primms but still can’t find the courage to go larger.

Downstairs is Alistair Grumps (Brett Gelman), the neighborhood nosey who spies on everyone and causes misery every chance he gets. Hector and Alistair have a problem with each other and it leads to chaos with Lyle in a zoo. With a plan to change that, it also changes the course for Lyle into something wonderful!

I want to start off first with someone who isn’t seen in the film but only heard. Shawn Mendes does such a lovely and wonderful job as the voice of Lyle. He has a clear and resounding voice that had my granddaughter toe tapping and hand clapping along with his songs. That is really important to reaching a kid into a character that doesn’t speak. She just loved him and wanted a Lyle of her own (thanks for that!).

Bardem as Hector has another chance to show off his vocal pipes as well as his dancing skills. In the role, he is a bit of a creep (as my granddaughter says) but by the end proved that eventually it is those who love you that are important. Waffling between good and sorta bad guy, Bardem makes it all charming.

Fegley as Josh is at that age where change is not always a good thing. Settling into a new place and making new friends is hard at any age and tad harder for Josh. Meeting Lyle by accident turns out to be the best friendship he could have hoped for. Coming out of his shell, he stands up for Lyle when other do not see what he does.

Gelman as Grumps is exactly that, a cat-man who has nothing better to do with his life than spy on his neighbors and make their lives crazy. A history with Hector makes things even more difficult but Grumps gets what he wants – to break up a family. Gelman does look like, at moments, he is having a good time in this role.

Wu as Mrs. Primm has a chance to hang out with the musical Lyle as well. This is sort of a feel-good role for Wu and it plays fairly straight. McNairy as Mr. Primm also has a chance to take on Lyle in a less musical way but it is still fun.

Other cast include Jackson Kravits as Cy, Ego Nwodim as Carol, Sal Viscuso as the Judge, and Lyric Hurd as Trudy.

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Bluray Exclusives include 4 Sing-Along Songs, Storytime Featuring Shawn Mendes and Javier Bardem, Bloopers, Deleted Scenes, Croc and Roll – Lyle on Set, Take a Look At Us Now – The Cast and 2 Music Videos.

The story written by Bernard Waber comes from the book of the same name along with The House on East 88th Street. Adapted for HBO in 1987, the special was also a wonderful musical.

LYLE, LYLE, CROCODILE is a fun family film and the music is absolutely stellar. In all the family films you have to admit that most of the time crocodiles are seen as the bad guys so its nice to see a singing and dancing loveable croc who just wants to fit in. Being a part of the Primm family is special and Lyle deserves everything good.

That is what is the takeaway here, acceptance, love, family, hope and a few surprises along the way. In the meantime, sing along and chance a dance with Lyle.

In the end – it’s a jungle out there!



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About the Author

Jeri Jacquin

Jeri Jacquin covers film, television, DVD/Bluray releases, celebrity interviews, festivals and all things entertainment.