Ugh, kill me now. Just end it. I don’t want to live in a world where a movie like this can get made.
The “story” – ugh, if that’s what you want to call it – looks like it’s about a cop and his talking K-9 partner that go to Vegas to search for a kidnapped panda cub.
Here’s the cast. Starring, we have a list of talent that will owe all of us apology cards, and they would be Will Arnett (NUT JOB 2 , TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES 2 , and upcoming films TEEN TITANS GO! TO THE MOVIES  and THE LEGO MOVIE 2: THE SECOND PART ), Ludacris (F8 OF THE FURIOUS  and FURIOUS 7 ), Natasha Lyonne (THE INTERVENTION , YOGA HOSERS , and HELLO, MY NAME IS DORIS ), Stanley Tucci (TRANSFORMERS 5 , BEAUTY AND THE BEAST , SPOTLIGHT , and upcoming films A PRIVATE WAR  and PATIENT ZERO ), and Alan Cumming (BATTLE OF THE SEXES ).
Now for the crew. Directing, we have the menace to good kids movies himself, Raja Gosnell, known for THE SMURFS (2011), SCOOBY-DOO (2002), and HOME ALONE 3 (1997). Co-writing the screenplay are Max Botkin (1 episode of WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN [2008 – 2009]) and Marc Hyman (MADAGASCAR 3: EUROPE’S MOST WANTED  and OSMOSIS JONES ). Composing the score is Heitor Pereira, known for NUT JOB 2, ANGRY BIRDS (2016), MINIONS (2015), and upcoming films SMALLFOOT (2018) and THE ANGRY BIRDS MOVIE 2 (2019). The cinematographer is David Mackie, known for a bunch of stuff that I’ve never heard of. Finally, co-editing are David Freeman (CLASH OF THE TITANS , HOW TO LOSE FRIENDS & ALIENATE PEOPLE , and THE BORROWERS ) and Sabrina Plisco (DOCTOR STRANGE ).
Overall, there’s no point in seeing the movie as the trailer basically shows you how it all ends, but because I’m a glutton for punishment, I’m seeing this embarrassment to kids movies.
This is my honest opinion of: SHOW DOGS
Max (voiced by Ludacris) is a New York K-9 police dog, and Frank Nichols (Will Arnett) is an FBI agent. Both have been chasing down a group of animal smugglers who stole a baby panda and both want the glory of taking down the thieves. While the bad guys get away with the panda, Max and Frank are assigned together to go to Las Vegas together to search and rescue the panda, which is being held in a prestigious dog show, all the while the two learning how to work together.
Ladies and gentlemen, I have some bad news. You see, I just found out that I have a tumor. It is what the professionals call, a proverbial tumor… I have gone ahead and named this tumor, Gosnel. But good news, so long as I see a quality film within the near future, I will be fine. But for now, my treatment involves tearing this movie a new one. So… let’s get to curing my sorry Peruvian butt.
First off, does Frank understand Max? Believe it or not, the movie isn’t very clear on this. They have a back and forth, as if they’re having a conversation, but then later on, he somehow doesn’t understand Max? But Max clearly understands human. There’s a bit where Frank is trying to get by a security guard to get into the show. But Max can go in rather effortlessly and Frank talks to him, saying that they know each other, and Max nods, allowing Frank to get past the guard. The exchange looks like they understand each other, but then there’s a scene toward the end of the movie where Max is yelling at Frank about something, but only now does Frank say, “I don’t understand you,” to Frank’s barking. So, does that mean they never understood each other? I’m thinking that’s the case, but the movie made it seem like they did.
But when you think about it, because these clearly sentient animals aren’t understood by humans, the world established doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. To humans, the animals are just animals. Not people. So with that in mind, how in the world is there an independently operated K-9 dog free from any handler? Like, he’s going on steak-outs and staging rescue operations completely solo, but call me crazy, I don’t think that happens in real life. So… what gives??
If this movie was simply dull and boring, I think I would give this movie a bit of credit and label it as “not the worst.” However, the jokes range from being confusing, to downright unfunny and awful.
For one, why in blazes does a pigeon have, ehem, “adult fantasies” about a dog? Yes, this really is a thing in this movie. I… don’t even know how that works. Biologically, logically, I’m legitimately more disturbed than anything. Actually, come to think of it, dogs are uncomfortably sexualized in this movie a lot… And there’s a LEGO MOVIE joke. During an interrogation scene between Frank and a criminal, the criminal makes a comment like, “What is this, good cop-bad cop? Are you the spinny head guy from the Lego Movie?” To which Frank responds with, “What do you know about it?” in his deep Batman voice. See the problem here? For one, Arnett was Batman and Liam Neeson was Good Cop and Bad cop. Second, Arnett doesn’t even do an impression of Good-Bad Cop. Finally, even if he did, it still wouldn’t work because it’s not the right voice actor! I know that’s technically repeating the first one, but this is such a stupid joke that I thought it deserved repeating! There’s also a joke involving a really mangy dog who acts like a drug addict, but get this, he’s addicted to catnip. Yeah. Not the more sensible doggy-treat, but catnip. It’s funny because… catnip is for cats, not dogs? And does no human have a reaction when dogs are doing flips and poses that are, for all intents and purposes, physically impossible for them to pull off? Oh, and gotta love how the humans are just standing around doing nothing while the dogs are having conversations.
Yes, there’s a fart joke, which is already pretty close to bottom of the barrel in terms of kids humor, but the cardinal sin of this movie is that it dedicates not one, but two scenes involving the fondling a dogs testicles and makes it a last-minute plot point. Man, I’ve got a string of expletives to use, but this is a kids review of a kids movie, so I am restraining myself.
Hey, big question for Nevada natives. Are there any laws that state a dog without a collar cannot have a chain leash wrapped around its neck? I just want to know if this movie is the worst thing to happen to dogs since A DOG’S PURPOSE.
So… one has to ask… is there anything that this movie does that might save it? No. But… there’s a male poodle in the flick. That’s rare in dog movies. Usually they’re portrayed as female. And Natasha Lyonne was pretty likable, given how awfully annoying the rest of the cast was.
Overall, this was hard to sit through. Even the group of kids in front of me were utterly disinterested in this movie. An entire cast of actors phoning it in, characters that are utterly annoying and more than a few that are pointless to the story in general, a senseless plot, humor that wouldn’t appease, nor should even be appropriate for, a toddler, terrible CGI, predictable and horribly clichéd story, it’s an insult to kids everywhere and should crash and bomb at the box office. Avoid this movie like the plague. Save your time and money for a more worthwhile kids movie. INCREDIBLES II is just around the corner. Hold out for that. For the sake of your children, don’t take them to see this.
My honest rating for SHOW DOGS: 1/5