[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Bolt_resized__5714.jpg]]

->''"Awesome!"''\\
--'''Rhino''', [[RunningGag over and over and over again]]

->'''Mittens:''' How do you say 'there's no way I'm doing this' in Crazy?\\
'''Rhino:''' [[CompletelyMissingThePoint Let it begin! LET IT BEGIN!]]

Released in 2008, ''Bolt'' is the 48th film in the Franchise/DisneyAnimatedCanon, featuring the voices of JohnTravolta and MileyCyrus.

Bolt is a genetically altered dog with numerous superpowers who, alongside his 'person' Penny, fights the evil forces of Dr. Calico, who has kidnapped Penny's scientist father.

[[ShowWithinAShow Or at least on TV.]]

Bolt has spent most of his life on a Hollywood set, believing that his powers and adventures are real, while the crew carefully hides anything that might reveal the TrumanShowPlot to the canine star. When a [[ExecutiveMeddling network executive demands the show become more interesting to a key advertising demographic]], the crew chooses a cliffhanger plot where Penny is captured by Dr. Calico -- causing Bolt to escape from his trailer to try and rescue her ''for real'' (and is accidentally shipped to [[BigApplesauce New York]] in the process). With the help of an alley cat named Mittens and an easily-excitable hamster named Rhino, he makes his way back to Hollywood and Penny, realizing along the way that his powers aren't real as well as learning what it means to be a normal dog.

The film went through several years of TroubledProduction, beginning life with the title of ''American Dog'' and featuring a very different plot that still centered around a television dog that believed himself to be inside the show. Originally directed by [[Disney/LiloAndStitch Chris Sanders]], [[ExecutiveMeddling friction]] after Creator/{{Pixar}}'s integration into Walt Disney Animation led to Sanders being replaced and the film undergoing a significant overhaul into ''Bolt''. The dust up led to Sanders departing Disney altogether, leading to his creation of ''WesternAnimation/HowToTrainYourDragon'' for rival Creator/DreamWorksAnimation.

Though the final film performed modestly, easily besting ''MeetTheRobinsons'' in box office and critical reception and even picking up an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature, ''Bolt'' was overshadowed by Creator/{{Pixar}}'s mega-hit ''WesternAnimation/WallE'' and Creator/DreamWorks' ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'', as well as opening up against teen girl powerhouse ''Film/{{Twilight}}''. Despite this, ''Bolt'' was a much-needed success for the studio after several years of difficulty in the market it once dominated.
----
!!This film provides examples of:

* [[ABoyAndHisX A Girl And Her Dog]]
* {{Acrofatic}}: Not as much outside of his ball, but Rhino can run long and fast ([[http://www.aspca.org/aspcakids/ask-azula/other-pets.aspx which is]] TruthInTelevision), and is strong enough to use it drag a ladder along the ground.
* ActorRoleConfusion: Rhino is just as oblivious to Bolt being an ordinary dog as Bolt himself is.
* AdultFear: The scene where Penny's mother is frantically searching for her daughter in the confusion and chaos outside the burning building. "Have you seen my daughter? Has anyone seen my baby?"
* AirVentPassageway: Subverted in that only Bolt can fit out this way, but Penny is too big.
* AllJustADream: The "Super Rhino" short, which is only available on the ''Bolt'' DVD.
* AlternativeForeignThemeSong: The Japanese version has a different ending theme called [[http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x9vf3e_甲斐名都-同じ空を見上げてる-ディズニー映画-ボルト-主題歌_music "I Look Up at the Same Sky"]].
* AmericanAccents: Several textbook examples displayed by the pigeons, mostly imitating LA, New York, and Midwestern accents.
* AMinorKidroduction: The film opens with Bolt as a puppy getting adopted, which may or may not be part of the show-within-a-show.
* AmplifiedAnimalAptitude: Although Bolt is the hero, he is also an extremely smart dog and can move his limbs well enough to deliver ''karate chops''. The replacement Bolt isn't nearly as smart, nor are the dogs in the pound. Mittens the cat can actually read.
* AndThatLittleGirlWasMe: Even though she never actually comes out and says it, it's pretty obvious that Mittens' rant about human companionship is the story of her own troubled past.
** Rhino did the same thing earlier in the movie, saying how he dreams of doing something really [[RunningGag awesome]], and Bolt was the one who inspired this dream, in order to motivate him to rescue Mittens. Although he let it slip that he's referring to himself.
* AnimalEyes: Well, animal ''eye''. Dr. Calico has one in the ShowWithinAShow.
* AnimalSuperheroes: Subverted - Bolt in the show is one of these, Bolt in real life isn't.
* AnimalTalk: Shown several times with Rhino's angry mutterings being heard as cute squeaks by humans, or where Bolt's attempts to "super bark" Mittens down from a tree is nothing but a yapping dog and yowling cat to an animal catcher.
* AnimeHair: Penny's in-show dad has…an ''interesting'' hair style. It looks like a soft-serve ice cream swirl!
* AntiVillain: Mindy from the Network. Yes, she was threatening the director with canceling the show if the ratings dropped, and she also wanted to convince Penny to replace Bolt to continue the series. However, she was just doing her job; a poorly-rated show is bad for a business like a TV network, and if they didn't continue the show, many people would lose their jobs. Arguably, there wasn't even one evil bone in her.
** Such people also earn themselves their very own spot in TheScrappy gallery. Ratings and maintaining a network are ''not'' viable excuses for the expense a dog's mental well-being, endangering a young girl's life, and once again stifling a director's creative control (along with possibly corrupting [[DoingItForTheArt any integrity he may have had]] before her first appearance). Not to mention this spectacular "award-winning" line:
-->'''Mindy Parker''': Wow. Okay, you want reality, here you go chief. The show's too predictable. The girl's in danger, the dog saves her from the creepy English guy, we get it. There's always a happy ending. And our focus groups tell us they're not happy with happy. So maybe you should, I don't know, spend a little less time worrying about the dog's method acting, and more time figuring out how to stop 20 year olds in Topeka from changing the channel. Because if you lose so much as half a rating point, so help me, I will fire everyone in this room, starting with you! How's that for real!?
** And this:
-->'''Mindy''': Look kid, it's time we are honest with you. If we don't get back in the production, people are gonna lose their jobs. Good people with families.
-->'''Penny''': But Bolt is still out there. And I...
-->'''Mindy''': I know, we feel for you. And the last thing we wanna do is ask a little girl to make a grown up decision. But it's come to that, we need you to move on. We need you to let Bolt go.
* ArcWords: ''(spoken by Penny)'' "You're a good boy. You're my good boy."
* ArtShift: "Barking at the Moon" shifts from real life places to 2D graphics in the style of the [[BlandNameProduct Waffle Barn]] map earlier in the movie.
* ArtisticLicenseFilmProduction: In real life, the scenes of a television show are rarely filmed in the order they're scripted (The "cliffhanger" of Penny's capture certainly wouldn't have been saved for last). Not to mention, putting so much effort into EnforcedMethodActing for a dog would be prohibitively expensive and time-consuming.
* AscendedFanboy: Rhino -- and his voice actor, too, interestingly enough.
* AssKickingPose: Bolt takes the same pose every time he does the Super Bark.
* AssuranceBackfire:
-->'''[[HeroicDog Bolt]]:''' Calm down, cat. You're with ''me.''
-->'''[[CatsAreSnarkers Mittens]]''': That's the ''problem!''
* AwardBaitSong: [[http://youtu.be/LqxC0SkKxwI "I Thought I Lost You"]] by Miley Cyrus and John Travolta
** And discussed in-universe, when the hollywood pigeons are discussing their idea for an episode: "We've got a great pop song for the end credits!"
* BalloonBelly: Mittens, after exploiting Bolt's cuteness in order to get food for them. Her LampshadeHanging provides the page's current quote:
-->''"Hey! Look! My stomach's distended! How great is that?"''
** Mittens was shown with an actual BalloonBelly in the original theatrical release of the film, but strangely, it has been censored on the Blu-ray for reasons unknown.
* [[BigDamnHeroes Big Damn Animals]]: Several times, both in the [[ShowWithinAShow show]] and out of it, such as the rescue of Mittens. The replacement Bolt [[spoiler:actually flips out and botches his first one we see, causing the fire that is the climax of the film.]]
* BrattyHalfPint: Bolt, towards Mittens, [[spoiler:until he finds out he doesn't have superpowers.]]
* BreakingTheFourthWall: Rhino is shown singing along with the background music while he and Bolt go to rescue Mittens from the animal shelter. [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], because the music that's playing is the "stealth theme" from the infiltration segment of the ShowWithinAShow; Rhino is singing the music from the TV show he'd been watching.
* BrickJoke: [[spoiler:When Bolt has decided to return to the studio for Penny, a trio of pigeons stop him with an idea for his show: "Aliens". Then, at the end of the movie, we see the show had been retooled to include... aliens. Who abduct Penny and Bolt, just as one of them was ranting about while they were accompanying Bolt.]]
* BrokenBird: Mittens.
* BrokenMasquerade: When Bolt finally learns he's not a super hero.
* CallingCard: Penny's preferred method of getting the attention of the bad guys was to roll a penny into their line of vision.
* TheCameo: Cast member Carrot of ''TheFundayPawpetShow'' gets a cameo as Bolt's chew toy.
* CaptainErsatz: Bolt has more than a few resemblances to KryptoTheSuperdog. And that's {{Lampshade}}d by Bolt early on, when he scoffs at being asked if he can fly.
* CarnivoreConfusion: Subverted, since Bolt and Rhino were domesticated pets [[spoiler:as was Mittens, who is also declawed and thus unable to hunt.]]
* CatchPhrase: Several.
-->'''Penny:''' That's a keeper!
-->'''Penny's Agent:''' Let's put a pin in it.
* CatsAreMean: A ZigzaggedTrope. Bolt sees all cats as servants of Dr. Calico early on, because the ShowWithinAShow plays the trope straight, and the cats on the set are legitimately being mean to Bolt by exploiting his ignorance for their own amusement. Mittens herself fulfills the trope at first, behaving like a Mafia don toward the local pigeons, [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold but drifts away from it as the film progresses]]. When Bolt realizes that this trope simply ''isn't true'' (at least, not to [[AlwaysChaoticEvil the extent]] he thinks it is), it's the first major step in his CharacterDevelopment.
* CatsAreSnarkers: Mittens definitely plays this straight.
-->'''Bolt:''' I will [[MakeMeWannaShout Super-Bark]] you out of that tree!\\
'''Mittens:''' Go nuts. Let's see how that works out for ya.\\
''Bolt barks''\\
'''Mittens:''' Oh, the super-bark. [[SarcasmMode Scary, scary.]]
** The skinny black cat who works on the set with Bolt is another example.
* ChainedHeat: Bolt invokes this between himself and Mittens, due to his belief that all cats are evil underlings of his show's BigBad (which he believes is real), and that she ''must'' know where Penny is due to that association.
* ChekhovsGun: The mock-up villainous helicopter that's being driven around the studio lot when the animals arrive, which later crashes to the floor during the fire.
* ChekhovsSkill: Two of them. Bolt's "zoom-zoom" skill from the TV show later comes in handy [[spoiler:pulling Penny through the smoke from the fire]]. Observing Rhino use an air vent to magnify his voice [[spoiler:allows Bolt to call for help when trapped in the burning building.]]
* CheerfulChild: Rhino. Bolt becomes this when Mittens teaches him how to be a dog, but he goes back to his serious attitude. [[spoiler:or maybe he just stayed that, as the end credits show him being cheerful]]
* CliffHanger: Created in order to make the ShowWithinAShow more appealing to a maturing target audience against its competition.
* CloudCuckoolander: Both Bolt and Rhino qualify.
* TheCuckoolanderWasRight: Despite being almost as detached from reality as Bolt, Rhino's knowledge of [[GenreSavvy typical plot elements]] makes him unknowingly wise at several critical moments, enough to provide a couple of inspirational {{Rousing Speech}}es.
* CreativeClosingCredits: The credits are pastel-colored, lineless 2D sequences showing [[spoiler:Bolt, Penny, Mittens, and Rhino's life together.]] [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming It's as cute as it sounds.]]
* CurseCutShort:
-->'''Mittens:''' ''Slow down! You're scraping the fur off my'' '''*clang*''' ''ahhh....''
* CutenessProximity: Invoked and exploited in the campgrounds by Mittens, as she has to coach Bolt on doing cute puppy-dog faces to get food. Bolt's begging works wonders, coaxing food out of an entire RV park.
** It doesn't work so well for Mittens, though.
* DarkAndTroubledPast: [[spoiler:Mittens is a declawed cat who was abandoned by her owners. "They leave her... wondering what she did wrong." She now no longer trusts any humans.]]
* DarkerAndEdgier: The network executive basically forces the show's director to steer the show into this direction in order to grab ratings.
* DeadpanSnarker: Mitten has elements of this. A ''lot'' of elements. Ditto for Mindy Parker.
* DeathbringerTheAdorable: Rhino the hamster.
* DieForOurShip: A hilarious in-universe LampshadeHanging occurs when Rhino first meets Mittens and assumes she helped kidnap Penny.
--> '''Rhino:''' How dare you disrupt their [[ABoyAndHisX relationship]] with your '''evil'''? Die! ''Die''!!
* DirtyCoward: Most of the people in the studio. [[spoiler:When a fire starts while Penny is literally tied up in the set, most of the people are in such a hurry to get ''themselves'' out that they don't even take a few seconds to help untie Penny. This nearly causes her death. Subverted when three of the crew try to reach her, but are overwhelmed by the smoke and forced to escape.]]
** [[spoiler:To be fair, she easily escaped her harness. They may have assumed she would get out on her own.]]
* DisappearedDad[=/=]MissingMom: Both -- Penny has only a mother, but her in-show role is a character with only a father.
* DistantReactionShot: The explosion of a helicopter in the opening knocks over a paper cup several miles away.
* DogsAreDumb: Subverted with Bolt, who is naive but not stupid (despite the cat who plays Calico's RightHandCat believing otherwise), and played straight with the dogs in the animal shelter.
** Bolt is an American White Shepherd, which is a genetic off-shoot of the German Shepherd. They are highly intelligent, fairly easy to train, and extremely loyal to their owners, so perhaps Bolt really ''is'' smarter than the average housepet.
* EveryCarIsAPinto: In the Show Within A Show, naturally, but even more so when (in the real world) a sign falls on a truck with a ''propane tank'' on board.
* EveryoneOwnsAMac: In the opening sequence, a woman on the train that Bolt lands on is seen typing on an Apple laptop.
* ExecutiveMeddling: In-universe network executives (as represented by Mindy Parker) ordered the Bolt studio to do something to keep the production profitable and stop audience members from "changing the channel" to the competition. The cliffhanger production that results is much to Penny's dislike, and spurs the main plot of the movie itself.
* {{Expy}}: Mitten's pigeon mobster underlings are most definitely not the Goodfeathers from ''WesternAnimation/{{Animaniacs}}''.
* FacePalm: A mook in the opening does this after accidentally blowing up a helicopter. Hilariously, he forgot he was wearing a taser gauntlet at the time.
* FakeOutOpening: You'd think that this was a movie about a superhero dog if you haven't seen the trailers, but then it shows Penny and Bolt wiping out an army of {{Mooks}} and calmly walking into a trailer a short distance away.
* FantasticRacism: Several varieties.
** The cats who play Calico's cats clearly look down on dogs.
** Bolt sees cats as "degenerate creatures of darkness", at least early on.
** Mittens seems absolutely convinced that no human ever had real love for an animal. [[spoiler:At least until she saw Penny genuinely sad that Bolt wasn't there.]]
* FatAndSkinny: The two guys moving the couch that Bolt and Mittens hitch a ride on into a U-Haul truck.
* FemaleFelineMaleMutt: Mittens and Bolt.
* FreudianExcuse: [[spoiler:Not only was Mittens abandoned, but she was de-clawed. This meant that she couldn't fend for herself after her family left her.]]
* TheFundayPawpetShow: Cast member Carrot gets a cameo as Bolt's chew toy.
* GasCylinderRocket: A gas tank in the animal shelter's back room loses its nozzle, shoots out into the parking lot, and knocks a neon sign over, destroying a car.
* GenreSavvy: When Mittens invokes ThisIsSomethingHesGotToDoHimself, Rhino insists that this often results in a need for backup and follows Bolt anyway.
** Rhino is ''so'' GenreSavvy that there are at least two points where the entire plot would have ''ground to a halt'' had he not known exactly what was "supposed" to happen next. [[ReconstructedTrope And he]] [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming was]] ''[[CrowningMomentOfAwesome right]]''.
* GilliganCut: "YOU'VE GOT NOTHING. No super strength, no super bark! ...And no heat vision."
* GrowlingGut: Mittens' stomach growls during her first scene, and she uses it as a tactic to scare one of her bird servants. This also happens to Bolt, and he freaks out thinking the growls of his stomach are caused by a poison that Mittens implanted in him.
* HappilyEverAfter: As the executives complain, every week of the show turns out this way.
** [[spoiler:The movie itself ends in this way.]]
* HateSink: Seeing as this film has no real antagonist, Penny's agent, who is the only character that the film really shows in a negative fashion, qualifies as this. The director and Mindy qualify as well[[note]]The director due to his odd... "vision". Mindy due to her telling Penny not to keep searching for her dog while she works with a replacement for the show.[[/note]], however the former isn't seen very much at all after that (and his "vision" is implied to be crushed due to Bolt's disappearance. Notice how Bolt's replacement is treated more like a regular dog) and the latter shows up later to [[ReasonableAuthorityFigure to regretfully inform Penny that she needs to move on, because peoples' jobs are at stake]].
* HeelFaceTurn: As noted in CatsAreMean, Mittens starts out as a petty criminal who intimidates the New York pigeons into bringing her food, but redeems herself by helping Bolt.
* HeroesWantRedheads: Given that Penny is a redhead. Although Bolt and Penny's interspecies relationship is probably more platonic in nature.
* HeroicFireRescue: Bolt running into a burning soundstage to rescue his girl Penny.
* HighAltitudeInterrogation: Bolt does this to a mook in the TV show, and again in the real world when he does this to Mittens and she says anything to avoid being dropped.
* TheHomewardJourney: Bolt somehow ends up cross-country in New York, away from his "human", Penny. He spends most of the film making his way back to her in Hollywood.
* HumansAreTheRealMonsters: Mittens' opinion through most of the film, [[FreudianExcuse not without reason]].
* HypocriticalHumor: Rhino also believed that Bolt's powers were real, despite it not being realistic (in-universe anyway), then at the end of the movie when he watches a new episode of ''Bolt'' that incorporated aliens into the storyline, Rhino turns off the TV in disgust while commenting on the idea "being totally unrealistic".
* ImpairmentShot: Played with: Penny in the ShowWithinAShow -- her vision goes from blacked out to immediately clear as her bandages are removed with no transition for her eyes adjusting to the light.
* InkSuitActor: Averted with most of the characters, but Penny's agent bears a pretty remarkable resemblance to his voice actor, Greg Germann.
* InterspeciesFriendship: Bolt the dog, Mittens the cat, and Rhino the hamster. Despite what FanFiction [[InterspeciesRomance tells you]], meaningful relationships can be [[TrueCompanions platonic]].
* InvincibleHero: The Network Executive's criticism of the show is that there's no tension since Bolt never loses, and every episode ends with him victorious, thus prompting the cliffhanger and thus, the plot of the movie.
* IronicEcho:
** {{Lampshaded}} by the pigeons in a DontExplainTheJoke situation.
-->"We had a deal!"\\
"The deal's just expired."
* JackBauerInterrogationTechnique: Play straight during the TV show. Subverted when Mittens plays along to Bolt's delusion in order to save herself from being dropped off a bridge.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Mittens.
* JerkWithAHeartOfJerk: [[spoiler: Penny's agent, who at first seems to sympathize with Penny's mother in her distress, but then tries to persuade her to use the disaster for publicity.]]
* JumpedAtTheCall: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VFPtY7hiGw Lampshaded]] by Rhino.
-->'''Rhino:''' Ring, ring! Who is it? ''Destiny?'' I've been expecting your call.
* JumpedTheShark: [[invoked]] The ShowWithinAShow after [[spoiler:Penny quit.]]
-->'''Dr. Calico:''' Aliens!\\
''[cut to Rhino sitting on a couch]''\\
'''Rhino:''' That is ''totally'' unrealistic.
* KarmaHoudini: The somewhat-crazed director of the TV show is never shown get any form of punishment for his... questionable method of making Bolt believe everything in the show is real.[[note]]On the other hand, playing mind games on a ''dog'' is not illegal, and might not even be unethical if Bolt was a realistic dog. Also, since the director's ideals where hinged upon Bolt ''not'' learning the truth, it's pretty easy to assume that his "punishment" was not seeing the fruition of his methods come to life, due to Bolt having gone missing and being forced to work with a new dog that wasn't as restrained as Bolt was.[[/note]]
** The movie seems to take the position that the director and Mindy From The Network are both honestly doing their best to make the show as good as it can be, and therefore are not doing anything wrong (other than Mindy's part in solely concerning herself with ratings, over human compassion, mush less a little girl's feelings over her missing dog). The only other character treated as a villain is the smarmy agent, who is actively dismissive of his actor's feelings and only wants to turn everything into publicity (and therefore to his own benefit).
* {{Keet}}: Rhino.
* KryptoniteFactor: Bolt assumes Styrofoam packing peanuts took his powers away when he first discovers he doesn't have powers. However, he refuses to believe he doesn't have the powers he thought he had, so he assumes on one occasion that the object he's trapped in (a dog catcher's truck) is made out of Styrofoam.
* LargeHam: Bolt and Rhino both qualify.
** The director of the ShowWithinAShow is even hammier though.
-->'''The Director:''' Let me ask you, Mindy from the network, what do you see here?\\
'''Mindy Parker:''' Uhh... the dog?\\
'''The Director:''' "The dog" she says. Oh, Mindy. Poor, poor Mindy.\\
'''Mindy Parker:''' ... am I missing something?\\
'''The Director:''' You're missing ''everything'', Mindy. You see a dog. ''I'' see an animal that believes, with every fiber of his being; EVERY FIBER; that the girl he loves is in mortal danger! I see a depth of emotion on the face of that canine, the likes of which has ''never'' been captured on screen before. NEVER, Mindy from the network. We jump through hoops to make sure Bolt believes everything is real. It's why we don't miss marks. It's why we don't re-shoot. It's CERTAINLY why we do NOT allow the dog to see BOOM MIKES... because, Mindy from the network... [[EnforcedMethodActing if ]]''[[EnforcedMethodActing the dog ]]''[[EnforcedMethodActing believes it... then ]]''[[EnforcedMethodActing the audience ]]''[[EnforcedMethodActing believes it.]]
* LeaningOnTheFourthWall: Rhino is shown singing along with the background music while he and Bolt go to rescue Mittens from the animal shelter. [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], because the music that's playing is the "stealth theme" from the infiltration segment of the ShowWithinAShow; Rhino is singing the music from the TV show he'd been watching.
* LicensedGame: One that [[FramingDevice functions as Rhino watching the "Bolt" TV show]] instead of following the film.
* LoadBearingHero: During the climax of the film, Rhino uses his own hamster ball to prop open the collapsing entry into a burning studio while Bolt dashes inside to save Penny. Hilariously, he poses as if holding up the debris with his own two paws despite the fact that they're not even touching the inside of his ball (though it does crack under the pressure). Mittens gets him safely out of the ball before it shatters from the weight.
-->'''Rhino:''' It is a [[HeroicSacrifice good day to die]]...\\
'''Mittens:''' Not on my watch, rodent!
* LookBehindYou: [[TheGoonShow "That's a weird place to put a piano."]]
* LuckyTranslation: "Bolt" has many meanings in Russian as well, but the most popular and widespread is "screw". Thankfully, "Volt" wonderfully goes with the existing lip sync ''and'' bears a connotation related to electricity, which sort of explains all the lightning signs, ''and'' the Cyrillic letter 'B' is actually pronounced 'V', so even the movie title looks sort of almost right to Russian viewers.
* MamaBear: [[spoiler:Penny's mother punching out the agent when he tries to tell them they can use Penny's burns from the accident at the end of the film as publicity.]]
* MeadowRun: Studio run, more precisely. First instance was the ShowWithinAShow, but the second is Penny genuinely reuniting with Bolt.
* MeanCharacterNiceActor: Arguably, the villains of the ShowWithinAShow. Towards the end of the film, Rhino spots one of Dr. Calico's underlings and charges toward him to attack. [[CutenessProximity The actor merely picks up Rhino's ball and proceeds to gush about how adorable he is]], oblivious to Rhino's attempts to fight him.
* MeaningfulName: Dr. Calico. "Calico" is a coat-pattern found in cats.
** Also borders on GenderBlenderName, as nearly all calico cats are female.
* MisguidedMissile: During the in-show ActionPrologue.
* [[NiceJobBreakingItHero Nice Job Breaking It, Substitute Hero]]: Bolt's replacement freaks out on-set when he's supposed to be saving Penny, knocking over a torch and setting the place on fire.
* [[NinetyPercentOfYourBrain 90% Of Your Brain]]: it would seem this (or something close) is at least part of what the ShowWithinAShow uses to justify the powers Bolt is given as the alterations include extra connections in his brain.
* NoAntagonist: Various characters cause problems for the heroes--the studio executives, the dog catchers, etc.--but there really isn't any villain of the movie. (Though Bolt spends a good part of the movie assuming Dr. Calico, the bad guy in [[ShowWithinAShow his show]], is behind everything.)
* NoNameGiven: Various examples, but Penny's acting agent and the director of the ShowWithinAShow stand out, as they are highly quotable characters who have to be referred to by description rather than by name. Penny's real name (as opposed to her show name) is also never given.
* NoOSHACompliance: The in-show studio went up in flames ''really'' fast; apparently it was full of flammable materials, which, considering they were filming with a ''lot'' of torches in the set, was ''very'' stupid. Also, nobody had a fire extinguisher handy, nor did the building appear to have any manner of suppression system.
* TheNthDoctor: When Penny quits the show, her replacement is {{Handwaved}} in-show as a result of [[MagicPlasticSurgery facial reconstruction]]. Amusingly, the replacement actress has bright green eyes, while Penny's eyes are brown. Reconstructive surgery ''can't do that''.
* [[OnlySaneMan Only Sane Animal]]: Poor, poor Mittens.
* PerspectiveReversal: This movie involves, earlier on, Bolt believing that [[spoiler:Penny's love for him was sincere]], and Mittens believing that it wasn't. Later in the movie, [[spoiler:Bolt sees Penny hugging another dog, assuming himself to have been replaced, and walking away before Penny can even see him... then Mittens sees Penny sobbing at the real Bolt not being there, and figures she was wrong about Penny. After this point, it's Mittens who thinks Penny's love for Bolt is sincere, and Bolt believing that it wasn't.]]
* PoundsAreAnimalPrisons: [[WhatMeasureIsANonCute Unless you're cute.]]
** Either downplayed or subverted; the pound is never portrayed as a "prison" for anyone but Mittens. The dog catcher's van, on the other hand, is a clear parallel to a prison paddywagon, but one could chalk this up to RuleOfDrama.
* PowerTrio: Bolt, Mittens and Rhino (more or less).
* ProductPlacement: Penny's agent wields a first-generation iPhone, while during Bolt's escape scene there's a whole shot of a guy editing on a Mac in what appears to be Final Cut Pro.
** There's a whole scene that takes place on a U-Haul truck.
** In beginning of the train boarding scene, the train is led by two surprisingly well rendered EMD SD70 locomotives with the CSX Transportation logo and paint scheme. Also, many of the background vehicles are late 60's Ford F-series trucks, with the bold FORD letters on the tailgate.
* ProsceniumReveal: The movie opens with an extended action sequence in which Penny and Bolt battle a horde of mooks. After Bolt vanquishes the last of them with his Super Bark, Penny picks up Bolt and walks away -- to a trailer with Bolt's name on the door. As they step inside, a bell rings, and the film crew wander into shot and start striking the set, while the "dead" bodies get up and walk off.
* ProtagonistTitle
* PunchClockVillain: A literal example, as Dr. Calico and his minions are just actors and extras.
* PuppyDogEyes: Mittens teaches Bolt to do these to beg for food. It doesn't work as well when ''she'' tries it out herself. Rhino also does these at a few points, though out of his personal excitement rather than for any practical purpose.
* RealityEnsues: Bolt's early attempts to use his superpowers in the real-world ''never'' end well. It takes him awhile to start learning that he doesn't actually have any.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: An in-universe example. After Penny leaves the show, she is replaced with a different actress. Her different appearance is basically {{Handwave}}d with plastic surgery.
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Mindy Parker, despite coming across as a {{Jerk|Ass}}, [[AntiVillain is only doing her job]]: letting people in the business know what they need to do to ''keep'' theirs. She may had been cold towards the director's vision, but as she said, many people don't ''[[TrueArtIsAngsty enjoy]]'' his [[DoingItForTheArt vision]] and [[SillyRabbitIdealismIsForKids it was killing the ratings]]. Later, it's pretty clear that she doesn't actively enjoy having to tell Penny to let go of her best friend, but she also didn't want people to lose their jobs, especially when another solution (get a replacement dog) was readily available.
* RedemptionInTheRain: Only briefly, but with bonus points for the extra layer of symbolism. [[spoiler:The rain is also washing away Bolt's lightning bolt mark, and he's [[CharacterDevelopment perfectly fine]] [[IJustWantToBeNormal with that]].]]
* RidiculouslyCuteCritter:
** Bolt, both as a puppy and as a full-grown dog.
** Rhino, especially when he [[http://cdnet.myxer.com/tn/c/1520379/big/?t=20090108214915 does]] PuppyDogEyes.
* RightHandCat: Dr. Calico has multiple ones.
* RoadMovie: A large portion of the movie features Bolt and his friends traveling across America.
* RunningGag: A few, one minor one involves a pair of college-age men moving across the US from New York presumably to somewhere in the West. They cross paths with Bolt and friends a few times, though the two groups only notice each other once or twice.
* SceneryPorn: Which of course, leads to this.
* ShoutOut
** The New York pigeons bear more than a passing resemblance to the Goodfeathers from ''WesternAnimation/{{Animaniacs}}'' (who were in turn a ShoutOut to ''Film/{{Goodfellas}}''). Also:
-->'''Hollywood Pigeon:''' We got a nibble! Now don't freak out, that's how we blew it with [[WesternAnimation/FindingNemo Nemo]].
** This connection to ''WesternAnimation/{{Animaniacs}}'' reinforces the sense that Mittens and Bolt resemble Rita and Runt.
** The pound dogs all went "Ball? Ball? Ball?" in a scene similar to another scene in ''WesternAnimation/FindingNemo''.
** Super Rhino (a short on the DVD) has Rhino doing a ''Series/HannahMontana'' concert; [[ActorAllusion let's not forget who voices Penny]].
** Also, Penny's slimy manager looks a lot like Radio/GlennBeck.
** It's been acknowledged that Penny is named after the Penny from ''WesternAnimation/InspectorGadget''.
** Hmm, an AllCGICartoon movie in which a guy thinks he's a superhero, gets separated from his owner, gradually warms up to an annoyed naysayer companion, depressedly learns that said companion was right all along, and then gets reassured by the same companion that he's not so worthless. [[WesternAnimation/ToyStory Where have we seen that before?]]
** On TV in the background at one point, one can hear, [[Series/PressYourLuck "Big money, no Whammies, no Whammies!"]]
** During the scene where Bolt dangles Mittens from the overhead bridge over the highway, there's a [[FreezeFrameBonus blink-and-you'll-miss-it]] glimpse of a [[{{Film/Speed}} bus with the number "2525" on its roof.]]
* ShowWithinAShow: Bolt's show, incidentally also called "Bolt", about a superheroic dog protecting and helping his human owner.
* SlapstickKnowsNoGender: Mittens is arguably even more of a ButtMonkey than Bolt.
* StockSuperpowers: In-show, Bolt has EyeBeams, a [[MakeMeWannaShout Super Bark]], SuperStrength, and SuperSpeed. Basically, he's a FlyingBrick, without the actual flying part.
*** Note that Bolt ''does'' have the ability to leap over enemy helicopters InASingleBound...
* StoryBreakerPower: "Speak" is Penny's command for Bolt's super-bark.
* StylisticSuck: The scenes from the ShowWithinAShow are an acute (and rather vicious) parody of most modern children's entertainment: an escapist fantasy with an inane premise, dumbed-down and shortsighted morals, and embarrassingly atrocious scriptwriting. Bolt realizing how pathetic and shallow that world is as compared to the real one is more or less the ''entire point'' of the movie. The show even [[JumpingTheShark Jumps The Shark]] in the end.
* [[TakeMyHand Take My Paw]]: Bolt to Mittens while on the train. Subverted in that she ultimately refuses to do so, causing Bolt to have to grab her by the neck to get her to come along.
* ThePowerOfFriendship: Especially in Rhino's speech to Mittens in Las Vegas.
* TheyChangedItNowItSucks: InUniverse, After Penny and Bolt leave the show, they are replaced by different actors and the new {{Big Bad}}s are now aliens. Rhino is not happy with the changes.
* ThirdActMisunderstanding: [[spoiler:Bolt witnessing Penny embracing his replacement and running off thinking Penny never really loved him when she was actually just acting in a scene.]]
* ThisIsWrongOnSoManyLevels: Mittens said a variant of this:
-->'''Bolt:''' If I stare at the lock really hard, it'll burst into flames and melt.\\
'''Mittens:''' (with a look of shock) Now I'm concerned on a number of levels.
* ToiletHumour: Literal, when Mittens introduces Bolt to a toilet, implying she told him dogs drink from it.
-->'''Bolt:''' Out of ''this?!'' [[NoJustNoReaction But...but...]]
* TravelMontage: Mostly used to show Mittens teaching Bolt how to act like a normal dog, rather than a superhero.
* TriumphantReprise: "... no home like the one you've got, 'cause that home belongs to you."
* {{Troperrific}}: The entire opening is a complete spoof of Jerry Bruckheimer and Michael Bay films. There are tons of tropes and cliches in the action and the dialogue. [[CrowningMomentOfFunny It's hysterical]].
* TropeyComeHome: The main plot.
* TrueCompanions: Only Penny and Bolt at the start, but Rhino and Mittens eventually fit in, as well. Rhino even points this out during his speech before he goes after Bolt in the last stretch to Hollywood.
* TrumanShowPlot: The director of Bolt's show implemented a perfect example of this trope: he believes that by making Bolt believe that his show is real, the audience would react to the show in a similar manner.
* UndersideRide: This is the means by which Penny and Bolt infiltrate the lair of their show's BigBad. It is reprised a twice in the film, once when Bolt and Mittens hide under a couch to get loaded into a moving van, and later Mittens and Rhino catch a ride under the stretcher that's taking Bolt and Penny to the hospital.
* UnnamedParent: Penny's mom.
* UnwillingSuspension: Penny in the ShowWithinAShow. The ropes are for show, she's safely harnessed.
* WeaksauceWeakness: Played with; see the KryptoniteFactor example.
-->'''Bolt:''' You don't know the ''power'' of Styrofoam!
* WhatMeasureIsANonCute: {{Lampshaded}} by Mittens when she and Bolt get picked up by Animal Control.
-->'''Mittens:''' They always pick the cute ones -- the ones that look like you, Bolt -- but the rest of us ''never come back out''.
* WindowPain: Both played straight in Bolt's TV show, and subverted when he attempts to try the same thing in the real world.
* YourOtherLeft: When Mittens is teaching Bolt how to do the dog begging face and pose.
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