The Shaggy Dog : It’s Going to be a Ruff Day

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Remember when going to the movies was a family event and you went to see something fun instead of just blood and guts? In 2006 Disney tried to bring that back to us with one film that really was fun to see, The Shaggy Dog. It wasn’t about guns, it wasn’t about aliens, it wasn’t about how much blood could be thrown at the screen, it was all about good family entertainment. Sure it shows just how self centered people can be, Tim Allen plays those types a lot, but it also showed how a family can come together to overcome adversity. Most would not see this film as that but it is about overcoming ones self to accomplish something great and spectacular.

Dave Douglas (Tim Allen) is an assistant district attorney who is trying a rather big case and one that could make his carrier. If he wins this case it could make him the next District Attorney, something he would really like. He has dedicated his life to the law and in recent years has been pulling away from his family without even knowing it. He has been missing evens with his kids, skipping out on trips to further his career and neglecting his family in general, he just doesn’t realize that he has been. He can’t even see that his own son Josh Douglas (Spencer Breslin) is purposely failing just to get out of playing football.

Carly Douglas (Zena Grey), Dave and Rebecca Douglas (Kristin Davis) daughter is making her father’s life interesting by standing up in support for her teacher Justin Forrester (Joshua Leonard) who is the defendant in the current case that her father is trying. The teacher is accused of setting fire to the lab where Dr. Kozak (Robert Downey Jr.) works. Carly and her other schoolmates believe that their teacher is innocent and picketing the lab where they believe illegal animal testing is going on. Little does anyone know that they are not far from the truth, there are illegal experiments going on in there and Carly and Trey (Shawn Pyfrom) sneak in to try and find evidence. As they are going in a big shaggy dog comes running out which they spirit away. Kozak and his team stole the dog from a Tibetan Buddhist monastery because it is over 300 years old and they want to try and isolate the gene to be able to sell on the open market. They want to have the pharmaceutical equivalent of the fountain of youth that they can get rich off of.

Because of the experiments that were going on Khyi-yag-po, the dog they stole, the gene is now viral. It was the only way that they could isolate it and make enough of it for experimenting with. This also means that if the dog bites someone they could catch the virus. What is found in the lab shows just how viral it is and Douglas winds up getting bit by Khyi-yag-po when he finds the dog at home. Dave doesn’t like dogs at all and there is a constant struggle that is finally resolved in the end. Dave also finds a new appreciation for his family and animals in general as he is changed into the one thing that he dislikes, a dog. As a dog he finds out the truth about Kozak as well as the real problems that are going on in his family. His time as a dog makes him a better man.

While the film is not 6 Star material it is still a film that is fun to watch. As this reviewer said earlier, it is not your normal smash and grab film that audiences have been flocking to but is instead a fun diversion. This is a fun family film that you really don’t mind watching again.

I give this film a Musing review of ★★★★☆☆