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"THE SHAGGY DOG"
(2006) (Tim Allen, Kristin Davis) (PG)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild Mild Heavy *Moderate Minor
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Moderate None Mild None Minor
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
*Mild None Heavy Moderate Moderate


QUICK TAKE:
Comedy: An assistant district attorney tries to reconnect with his family after a dog bite from a mystical canine leaves him with the ability to transform from human to dog and back again.
PLOT:
Dave Douglas (TIM ALLEN) is the assistant district attorney who's in line to replace his boss, Ken Hollister (DANNY GLOVER), and is currently prosecuting an arson case against high school social studies teacher Justin Forrester (JOSHUA LEONARD). But his busy schedule leaves little time for his wife, Rebecca (KRISTIN DAVIS), or their kids, Josh (SPENCER BRESLIN) who'd rather be in the school play than on the football team and Carly (ZENA GREY) who's a teen activist -- along with boyfriend Trey (SHAWN PYFROM) -- currently protesting Forrester's arrest as well as the activities of corporate giant Grant & Strictland.

Run by the ailing Lance Strictland (PHILIP BAKER HALL), that company is conducting genetic research in hopes of finding the perpetually elusive "fountain of youth." Lead scientist Dr. Kozak (ROBERT DOWNEY JR.) thinks he's located it in the form of a reportedly 300-year-old bearded collie that's been abducted from Tibet. Thanks to tests conducted by lab technicians Larry (JARRAD PAUL) and Gwen (BESS WOHL), they've isolated the substance that's allowed the dog to live so long and have conducted tests on various lab animals, resulting in odd mutant hybrids of various species.

The Tibetan dog manages to escape and is then rescued by Carly and Trey, but Dave doesn't want a dog in the family. But when he reaches out for it, the dog nips him on the hand, thus injecting its DNA into him. Unbeknownst to him, that initially gives him various dog-like traits, none of which amuses Judge Claire Whittaker (JANE CURTAIN) who's presiding over his case against Forrester. As his condition worsens to the point of him completely turning into an identical clone of the Tibetan bearded collie, Dave tries to figure out what to do, all while attempting to continue working, stay ahead of Kozak and his minions, and fix things with his family before it's too late.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
It's a good bet many younger kids will be interested in it.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
For some mild rude humor.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • TIM ALLEN plays an assistant district attorney who's put his career ahead of his family, thus straining his relationship with his wife and kids. When a dog bite turns him into a dog (and he exhibits all sorts of dog-like behavior at other times), he then sets out to stop Kozak as well as repair his family bonds.
  • KRISTIN DAVIS plays his wife who's upset that he's put his marriage and family on the back burner.
  • ZENA GREY plays his teenage daughter who's socially active and isn't happy that her dad is never around.
  • SPENCER BRESLIN plays her younger brother who really wants to be in the school play but is on the football team only because he thinks that's what his dad wants. He starts getting bad grades in hopes that they'll force him off the team.
  • ROBERT DOWNEY JR. plays the greedy mad scientist who wants to take over Grant & Strictland so that he can become rich from his minions discovering what they believe is a fountain of youth mutation. He also wants to dissect Dave to see what makes him have the ability to turn into a dog.
  • DANNY GLOVER plays the district attorney who becomes increasingly concerned and then perturbed over how Dave is behaving in court.
  • JOSHUA LEONARD plays the high school social studies teacher accused of arson and who's protesting what's occurring at Grant & Strictland.
  • SHAWN PYFROM plays Carly's boyfriend who joins her in her social activism and possibly fools around with her in her bedroom.
  • BESS WOHL and JARRAD PAUL play Kozak's minions who are doing all of the genetic manipulation and mutation research on lab animals.
  • JANE CURTAIN plays the judge overseeing Dave's case against Forrester.
  • PHILIP BAKER HALL plays the ailing leader of Grant & Strictland.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a brief summary of the content found in this PG-rated comedy. A few religious and various colorful phrases are uttered, while unintentional male full nudity is present several times but occurs just off camera (although others see it in one scene in public). A mother and daughter are seen in bikini tops (the teen is seen in a full bikini), while some teen fooling around is somewhat implied (behind a closed door).

    Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, including the somewhat cartoonish villains who are doing genetic experiments on lab animals (resulting in various mutant creatures), kidnap a dog, and threaten that they're going to kill the main character and cut him open. Those scenes and a few other moments may be unsettling or suspenseful to very young viewers, but probably not to older ones who will likely see that the film isn't being realistic in such portrayals.

    Some humans and a dog are zapped by electric cattle prods and a sickly older man is given something that makes him convulse, while some slapstick style material is present as are two brief dog bites. Due to a father being so busy at work (and later "absent" in the form of a dog), his wife and kids aren't happy and both worry that a divorce may be pending (the father works to rectify that). Various bits of behavior may be enticing for some kids to imitate (including all of the dog-related material), while some crude humor is present, as is some brief drinking (while a benign and joking drug reference is made).

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those concerned with bright flashes of light on the screen, there are some brief flashes of lightning at night.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, there is some bouncy camera movement representing Dave's (as the dog) point of view.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • We see what may be beer bottles in the family fridge.
  • A person jokingly asks another, "You've been drinking, haven't you?"
  • When a dog member of the K-9 unit smells Dave's clothed butt in an elevator, its human handler jokingly asks Dave, "You don't have anything illegal up there, do you?" (a drug reference).
  • We see some miscellaneous people having wine.
  • Rebecca has a glass of champagne while waiting for Dave in a restaurant.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • We see some of the Tibetan dog's blood in a syringe (after it's just been drawn for testing).
  • When Dave reaches out for the Tibetan dog, it bites him on the hand (leaving several slightly bloody bite marks), but then licks it to try to make it better. We then see some computer-generated visuals representing his blood stream and the genetic mutation moving about (not scary, but the queasy might not like the imagery).
  • Dave (as the dog) bites Kozak on the finger and we see a tiny bit of blood on his fingertip.
  • Crude humor includes the following:
  • We see a neighbor dog with its leg lifted at Dave's bushes (but we don't see urine).
  • From behind, we see a man standing at a urinal, with Dave then going up and standing there with his leg raised like a dog (nothing heard or seen from a urination or nudity standpoint).
  • Carly asks Dave (as the dog) if he needs "to do your business?"
  • Various dogs smell Dave's (as the dog) butt (and he comments on this in human voice-over narration).
  • When a dog member of the K-9 unit smells Dave's clothed butt in an elevator, its human handler jokingly asks Dave, "You don't have anything illegal up there, do you?" (a drug reference).
  • Dave (as the dog) says, "Somebody's peeing on the lawn" (it's the neighbor dog again).
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Kozak and his two minions have bad attitudes for performing illegal genetic modifications on lab animals. Kozak also puts his boss into a months-long state of fake dementia (so that he can take over the company and makes lots of money -- which Larry and Gwen are okay with) and then wants to kill Dave so that he can dissect his body to see how he's transforming.
  • We hear that social studies teacher Justin Forrester is charged with arson.
  • Carly wears a t-shirt supporting her teacher and denouncing her dad in the form of a photo of him with circle and line through it imposed over his face.
  • Carly and Trey sneak into Grant & Strickland's headquarters and steal the Tibetan dog from there (all in hopes of proving the company is up to no good).
  • Kozak tells Larry and Gwen not to worry about the FDA and its approval of their find, stating that it's nothing money can't buy.
  • A few other players (on his own team) laugh when Josh is put into the game (and say things like "You completely suck" and "Everyone thinks you're a loser").
  • Kozak purposefully destroys some video tape evidence.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Younger kids may find the scenes listed here as unsettling or suspenseful, but that probably won't apply to older ones who will likely see that the film isn't being realistic in such portrayals (especially since much of it's played lightly and/or for comedy).
  • We see the Tibetan dog's POV of men aiming large "guns" at it, with one firing a net that captures the dog.
  • We see various genetically mutated animals in the G&S lab, including a half-dog, half-frog creature and a cobra with a furry dog's tail (all played lightly for comedy rather than horror or scariness, although some younger kids might find some of those visuals unsettling).
  • For those afraid of dogs, when Dave reaches out for the Tibetan dog, it bites him on the hand (leaving several slightly bloody bite marks), but then licks it to try to make it better. Later, Dave (as the dog) races toward a car containing Carly's friend, scaring the girl (but he's doing so to stop the girl from taking Carly to get a tattoo).
  • We see that Larry and Gwen have the Tibetan dog in a metal cage with a metal muzzle over its snout. There's also talk of an electric cattle prod and a syringe they're going to use.
  • While still in human form but running on all fours while chasing a cat, Dave and the cat barely avoid being hit by cars when they race across the street.
  • Kozak injects Strictland with his fountain of youth serum, which causes the latter to start to convulse and then go still. Larry and Gwen ask if he's dead, but Kozak says he put him in a dementia type state that will wear off in several months.
  • Dave (as the dog) rushes outside but is zapped when hit by the current from the electric cattle prod held by Larry. He and Gwen then scoop up the dog and race away in their car, chased by Carly and Josh on foot.
  • Kozak tells Dave (as the dog that's in a cage) that he won't be leaving the lab alive. He then comments on doing tests on Dave (as the dog) and cutting him up to do so.
  • Those afraid of snakes might not like scenes featuring a long cobra, but it's friendly and has a furry dog's tail on the end (it's a genetic mutation).
  • Distracted while driving, Dave nearly drives into the back of a stopped taxi in front of him (he slams on the brakes and slides, stopping a few inches away).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • We see the Tibetan dog's POV of men aiming large "guns" at it, with one firing a net that captures the dog.
  • An electric cattle prod is used to zap both animals and humans.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Whizzing" (urinating), "Still freaks me out," "Don't get too cocky," "Nuts," "You completely suck," "Everyone thinks you're a loser," "You're a pig and I hate you," "Are you sure you're not just drama-queening?" "You filthy little mongrel," "To infinity and beyond" and "Morons."
  • Kids may be enticed to imitate Dave acting like a dog (rolling out his tongue, scratching, growling, eating food from a bowl with his mouth, smelling everything, riding with his head out of the car, running on all fours, retrieving some papers with his mouth and then not letting go, etc.) or they could make up their own dog behavior.
  • Carly wears a t-shirt supporting her teacher and denouncing her dad in the form of a photo of him with circle and line through it imposed over his face.
  • Carly and Trey sneak into Grant & Strickland's headquarters and steal the Tibetan dog from there (all in hopes of proving the company is up to no good).
  • We see Josh dancing on the bed while listening to music on his headphones.
  • Dave laps up some coffee from a mug and then smells his cereal before eating it from the bowl with his mouth (like a dog).
  • Dave goes to kiss Rebecca but then licks her face (acting like a dog).
  • After chasing away the neighbor dog, Dave keeps repeating "My yard!"
  • Dave (as the dog) hears that Carly is going to get a tattoo ("across the back of my...") with a friend who has a nose ring, but Dave (as the dog) races out at that teen in her car and scares her, making her drive away.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A mild amount of dramatic and suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 3 uses of "Oh my God."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Several instances of implied full male nudity (that others see, but we don't) are present, thus possibly being of concern for some viewers.
  • We see Dave shirtless after a shower.
  • Dave goes to kiss Rebecca but then licks her face (acting like a dog).
  • As an animal control guy bends over, a tear forms in the seat of his pants (we see part of his underwear).
  • We hear Dave's thinking (when he's a dog) saying he's dreaming and in five seconds will wake up nude in the courtroom (but that doesn't occur).
  • Trey nearly kisses Carly (who's in the 11th grade) on her bed (clothed), but Dave (as the dog) interrupts them. But after getting him to chase something out into the hallway, they close the door for some privacy (but we don't know what else occurs, if anything).
  • In dog form (where only we hear his human voice over narration), Dave reacts to Rebecca's smell and asks what sounded like if she's "in heat."
  • Dave wakes up in human form with just a blanket around him (and he peaks down inside that and smiles, reassured that everything's turned back human again).
  • After meditating and turning back to human form, Dave is nude inside a metal dog cage, but we don't see anything explicit.
  • When Dave (as the dog) changes back into human form, he's nude on the courtroom steps (others, including his entire family, see him that way, but we don't see anything explicit -- only from the chest up -- and it's all played for comedy).
  • We see Carly in a bikini and Rebecca in a bikini top when the family's on vacation at the beach.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Dave puts his work ahead of his wife and kids, thus straining his relationship with all of them.
  • Carly wears a t-shirt supporting her teacher and denouncing her dad in the form of a photo of him with circle and line through it imposed over his face.
  • When Dave says he's going to ground Carly for protesting in front of his client's building, she sarcastically asks how he could enforce it since he's never home.
  • Upset that he's never around, Rebecca asks Dave what happened to her husband as well as when was the last time he said he loved her. When he then says that he does, she replies that it doesn't count.
  • Rebecca is disappointed in Dave for breaking his promises to her and the family.
  • We hear that Josh's grades have dropped, and it's believed that's because of his dad never being around. Later, however, we hear he's purposefully doing that to be kicked off the football team (that he's only on for his dad).
  • Rebecca is upset when she thinks Dave has stood her up on their anniversary (he's really in dog form) and has sent a dog with flowers in his place. She thinks this is the beginning of the end of her marriage, but then states to another woman, "I'm not single...yet."
  • Carly is upset and tells Josh that their parents are breaking up, but he's questions that and her.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Parents/spouses who spend too much time working.
  • Genetic engineering.
  • Humankind's longstanding quest to find the "fountain of youth."
  • Social protesting.
  • Kids worrying that their parents are going to divorce.
  • We hear that social studies teacher Justin Forrester is charged with arson.
  • We hear that Josh's grades have dropped, and it's believed that's because of his dad never being around. Later, however, we hear he's purposefully doing that to be kicked off the football team (that he's only on for his dad).
  • While in dog form, Dave (as the dog) says another dog in the pound sold him for three biscuits (presumably a prison joke, and meaning he was sold to another dog).
  • We see a homeless man.
  • VIOLENCE
  • When Dave reaches out for the Tibetan dog, it bites him on the hand (leaving several slightly bloody bite marks), but then licks it to try to make it better.
  • Dave (as the dog) runs face-first into a window to try to make himself wake up (played for comedy as the dog's face slides down the window).
  • While still in human form but running on all fours while chasing a cat, Dave runs into an old woman with a walker, knocking her up into a tree. He then races across a restaurant table, breaking glasses and plates before eventually cornering the cat in some sort of pipe, but the cat scratches his hand (no blood) and escapes. During that, a large truck smacks into the back of his neighbor's car, smashing it (we later see him in a neck brace) and sending the dog inside it up against the windshield (all played for slapstick).
  • Josh is put into a football game, but doesn't know what to do. Accordingly, several larger players tackle him hard to the ground when he's handed the ball.
  • Kozak injects Strictland with his fountain of youth serum, which causes the latter to start to convulse and then go still. Larry and Gwen ask if he's dead, but Kozak says he put him in a dementia type state that will wear off in several months.
  • Kozak purposefully destroys some video tape evidence.
  • Dave (as the dog) rushes outside but is zapped when hit by the current from the electric cattle prod held by Larry. He and Gwen then scoop up the dog and race away in their car, chased by Carly and Josh on foot.
  • Dave (as the dog) bites Kozak on the finger and we see a tiny bit of blood on his fingertip.
  • Trying to escape from a metal dog cage, Dave manages to get the cage to fall off a table and to the floor where it (and he) lands hard (but he's okay).
  • Larry zaps Dave with the electric cattle prod, sending the latter tumbling to the floor dazed.
  • A chimp zaps Larry and Gwen with the electric cattle prod.
  • Kozak suddenly has a dog tail sticking out from his clothes and it accidentally whacks a guy in the face several times.



  • Reviewed March 6, 2006 / Posted March 10, 2006

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