Air Bud (1997)

Air Bud (1997)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Air Bud Photos

Movie Info

A charming children's movie about a lonely boy and a dog who can shoot hoops.^L^C5 Since his father's death, Josh Framm (Kevin Zegers) has become increasingly withdrawn. Even basketball, once his passion, scarcely seems to matter. His worried mom (Wendy Makkena) moves the family to a small town near where she grew up, hoping that a fresh start will revive Josh. But he doesn't fit in well at school, and seems worse than ever. Until he finds Buddy, an abandoned golden retriever who can nose a ball into a net better than any dog has a right to. With Buddy at his side, Josh finds the courage to try out for the school team and come out of his shell around other kids. Buddy becomes the team's mascot and inspired by the pooch and their new coach, a former pro named Arthur Chaney (Bill Cobbs), they begin winning. But everything comes crashing down when Buddy's owner, a nasty party clown named Norm Snively (Michael Jeter), shows up to claim his dog.^L^C5 AIR BUD's story is nothing strikingly original, except for the gimmick of the basketball-playing hound. But it's told with skill and a great deal of heart, and greatly enhanced by subtle performances from Zegers, Cobb and Makkena, who manages to make Mrs. Framm less insipid than is the standard for moms in kid's movies. They are, of course, all thoroughly upstaged by Buddy, a sweet-faced dog with irresistible eyes. Add in the solid values that drive the story--the significance of teamwork, the importance of family, the merit in not giving up--and AIR BUD is a very attractive family package.
PG (Brief Mild Language)
Comedy , Kids & Family
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Keystone Pictures

Watch it now


Michael Jeter
as Norm Snively
Kevin Zegers
as Josh Framm
Wendy Makkena
as Jackie Framm
Bill Cobbs
as Arthur Chaney
Eric Christmas
as Judge Cranfield
Brendan Fletcher
as Larry Willingham
Norman Browning
as Buck Willingham
Jay Brazeau
as Referee
Stephen E. Miller
as Coach Joe Barker
Nicola Cavendish
as Principal Pepper
Shayn Solberg
as Tom Stewart
Marian Dodd
as Reporter
Ursula Martin
as Party Mom
Kevin DiCicco
as Referee 2
Jessebel Mather
as Andrea Framm
Kati Mather
as Andrea Framm
as Buddy the Dog/Air Bud
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Air Bud

All Critics (21) | Top Critics (4)

Dull but harmless.

December 31, 1999
USA Today
Top Critic

The writing is so messy and aimless that when the film retrenches to generic kid flick mediocrity, it actually counts as a relief.

Full Review… | November 27, 2014
Antagony & Ecstasy

A high-flying dog tale for kids.

Full Review… | September 9, 2010
Common Sense Media

There's an air of acceptance throughout the film, but the movie never stops to stand at a pulpit and preach this message.

Full Review… | April 18, 2009
7M Pictures

A basketball playing Golden Retriever shows his stuff on several high-school basketball courts.

Full Review… | March 4, 2009
Spirituality and Practice

I guess it was a pretty good movie, though I got a little bored halfway through and took a little snooze. I like air conditioning. There was lots of popcorn on the floor.

January 2, 2005
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Audience Reviews for Air Bud


I don't understand why people think a basketball playing dog is entertaining. It's impossible for a dog to play in the first place, although the movie tries to make it seem feasible. Overall, I hated this movie.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

This was fun and original but you get thinking that it is kind of ridiculous that a dog plays basketball! However,I love the concept and these films can keep on coming!

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

A dog that can play sports - that's crazy! Like all the Air Bud movies, totally radical!

Lafe Fredbjornson
Lafe Fredbjornson

Super Reviewer

Air Bud Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Air Bud on our Movie forum!

News & Features