Oh lord.....Where to start....Where to even freakin' begin.....Oh, oh, I got it! There we go!
There is no more denying it: Firehouse Dog is GOD-AWFUL. It is VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY BAD. It is the WORST dog movie I have ever seen. A cute premise has been sadly ruined with a overlong runtime and bodily function jokes! UGH! THIS MOVIE MAKES ME WANT TO WATCH THE OTHER BAD ANIMAL MOVIES!!
This little-known release from 20th Century Fox, one of the 6 Major Movie Studios, and Regency Enterprises, came out with little fanfare for one good reason: It SUCKS. It was filmed in 2005, two years before the movie came out! They should not have made it in the first place anyways! The filmmakers may even have some sequels planned! Firehouse Dog 2: The Forest Fire, Firehouse Dog 3: The Cat That Won't Get Out Of The Tree, Firehouse Dog 4: The Next Blaze, Firehouse Dog 5: The Big Factory Inferno and Firehouse Dog: The Last Adventure? Don't you dare give out a little chuckle or even a big laugh. These ideas are most likely sitting on one of the screenwriter's desk right now.
Anyway, the story is that of Rex, Hollywood's top-grossing canine, is known for his extreme athletic abilities and diva-like demeanor. His perks package, rivaling that of any A-list celebrity, includes Kobe beef, a poodle harem, and a diamond collar. Rex?s luck ? and Hollywood high life ? runs out while shooting a commercial; an aerial stunt goes awry, leading Rex?s handlers to presume he?s dead. But Rex is merely lost ? alone, filthy and unrecognizable in an unfamiliar city. Chased by animal control, he takes refuge in grubby abandoned lofts, a far cry from his former luxurious lifestyle. Shane Fahey (Josh Hutcherson), a bright but rebellious 12-year-old, has exasperated his father Connor (Bruce Greenwood) for the umpteenth time. A single parent and captain of the rundown inner city fire station known as Dogpatch, Connor is charged with inspiring the sad-sack company: veteran and firehouse cook Joe Musto (Bill Nunn), the super-fit and strong-willed mother hen Pepita ?Pep? Clemente (Mayte Garcia), the exhausted family-man Lionel Bradford (Scotch Ellis Loring), and the calendar-worthy rookie Terence Kahn (Teddy Sears). The team is still coping with the recent loss of their former captain, Connor?s brother. Shane is also troubled by his uncle?s death, and he?s been acting out by ditching school. And then flames break out. Fight them. Live a boring life. Go to a dog show. Fight the blazes again. All that random stuff. Yeah, that's all you need to know about the movie's plot.
Like Carpool, I have seen it at school TWO TIMES. First was the Summer of '07, after the DVD was released. Then, Again, In October 2, 2009! I have suffered enough already from this shell of a dog movie. A cute premise...Ruined? THIS IS NO FAMILY-FRIENDLY DOG MOVIE!! This is a PG-Rated movie which is about a dog who farts, burps, snores, poops, and rides a skateboard, and the question arises: Is it worse to strive for greatness and fail, or to strive for mediocrity and succeed?
The movie is a jumble of ideas. Some of them actually work, and a few of those that actually work actually work quite well. But most of them do not work, although they do hit their stated objectives of getting kids to laugh by showing a cute dog doing silly things. There is the aforementioned farting, burping (?mouth farts,? as they call ?em here), and snoring, all of which arrive whenever the writers can?t figure out how to wrap up a scene. A key punchline comes when we notice the dog has relieved himself into a pot of stew; we do not see the event, but later, we are treated to the sight of him peeing on a fire. And, yes, he rides a skateboard, and pulls blankets off of people, and cocks his head on cue, and when those tricks fail the script, CGI comes in to let him do backflips and Jackie Chan-esque wall-climbing stunts. In one scene, he wears sunglasses while ?Bad to the Bone? plays on the soundtrack.
So yes, ?Firehouse Dog? is, in parts, everything you think ?Firehouse Dog? is going to be: base, stupid, and tiresome. Occasionally, randomly lame. And the runtime is 111 Minutes! WHICH IS OVERLONG! Couldn't it be reduced to 69 minutes or so?! Ugh...Why? WHY? Why does it have to RUN TOO LONG?! Goddammit, I just wasted 111 minutes of my life for about two times just now! This is an oddly second-rate production for a major-studio release; the underwhelming mystery belongs in a "Scooby-Doo" episode, and the slapdash direction is just as shaggy. Even the titular star is accurately described as an "ugly, stinking mutt" (and one whose primary attributes are computer-generated tricks and a notably queasy digestive system).
If "Firehouse Dog" was on cable, where it belongs, it would make a passable diversion from homework or chores. But a kid would have to be pretty desperate to leave the house - and waste allowance money - for this modest distraction. But, No -- It had to be released on the silver screen. How perfect of you, Fox. To release a movie that needs hosing down, for god's sake...
Ultimately, this is the same plot as Disney's Cars, Aardman's Flushed Away, Ridley Scott's A Good Year and dozens of other movies: a spoiled, talented outsider is suddenly thrust into a new, unfamiliar world populated by kind-hearted, but reserved, misfits. Each side teaches the other a thing or two about humility and selflessness, and everyone winds up forming a new, loving, perfect family. It's obviously a popular formula, but ultimately has little to do with any kind of real experience, and it's getting tired.
The movie also trips up its chance to parody show business. This film's idea of "jokes" is to pun on recent movie titles like Jurassic Bark and The Fast and the Furriest. The main trouble is that Hollywood hasn't had a real dog star since Benji romped through the 1970s (although a small attempt was made just this past year to resurrect Lassie), and Firehouse Dog really doesn't have the first idea what dog stardom actually entails (again, no pun intended). For one thing, it has to do with a great deal more than navigating a multi-tiered story; back in the silent era, Rin Tin Tin worked in some of the creakiest plots imaginable, but he had a palpable screen presence, one that can still be felt today. (His 1925 film Clash of the Wolves is available in the "More Treasures from American Film Archives 1894-1931" DVD box set.)
Also...If Shane ditches school, the screenwriter's act is beyond me. Does the entire movie take place on weekends? Moments of the other, satirical movie emerge when Rex daydreams about love-of-his-life Lola, a Dalmatian with Bo Derek cornrows, or when Trey throws a lavish funeral complete with fake rain and such luminaries as the Aflac duck and the Taco Bell Chihuahua (presumably not the real ones). Mostly, however, this is a slow, flat-footed film where even firefighters don't seem to move with any urgency. Every fart, poop, burp and snore joke gets pulled out and marked off like it's on The Official Kids' Movie Checklist. But it is far from the fun-filled, fish-out-of-water comedy of its marketing campaign. Not even Greenwood, Hutcherson, Mihok and Culp can save this movie from being in my bad movies list.
The film is directed by Todd Holland and is written by Mike Werb, Claire-Lee Lim and Michael Colleary. Werb and Colleray also serve as producers. And "Bad To The Bone" in this movie? Not to mention the "Rocky" theme? Ugh. Werb and Colleary should be fined for the use of "Bad To The Bone" and/or the "Rocky" theme song. And it concentrates on plot, lots and lots of plot, a butt-numbing 111 minutes of plot with at least six subplots. And, also, the story also blantly rips off from TWO other firefighting movies: Backdraft and Ladder 49! Think of it as Beethoven + Backdraft or Air Bud + Ladder 49. You decide.
Supposedly a comedy, it actually features four different stunt Irish terriers tricked up with computer-generated special effects that give them humanoid expressions and allow them to slide down firepoles. UGH! Real Irish Terriers?! WTF?!!!! Haven't PETA and the HSUS even HEARD of the cruelty of using real animals in movies?!!!!!!????
The effect is cute with a capital K and grotesque with a capital G, as though offscreen puppeteers were pulling digital wires to make the animals dance. "Firehouse Dog" isn't quite the equivalent of the 1999 talking-infant bomb "Baby Geniuses ," but at times it's close enough for discomfort.
That's too bad, because the human scenes in "Firehouse Dog" are perfectly acceptable on the level of a heartwarming family B-movie. Not one of the three writers seems to have a solitary spark of an idea. Scruffy, spirited, family-friendly comedy with too many flatulence jokes and pooch-related puns. An uncomfortable blending of three different stories that neglects the one thing I want to see -- the relationship between the boy and the dog. The film is likely too intense for younger children yet too simplistic for their older siblings or grownups. You'd be better off taking yourself to visit a dog run for a few hours.
Oh, and two more last notes: This is a movie that may not be sutible for children, and for people who dislike poop and fart jokes. Also, the closing credits of show Polaroids of the cast and crew's own dogs, their names scrawled beneath each picture. And this is, sadly, wasted on a very bad film. Awesome. Very awesome.
There is absolutley no more denying it: This is the WORST Domesticated Dog Movie I HAVE EVER SEEN. I do NOT want to watch it for the third time. I'd rather eat undercooked veggie burgers. I'd rather hit my head multiple times than watch this anymore. I'd rather drink a beverage with High-Fructose Corn Syrup as the first ingredient! I'd rather watch Lady and The Tramp 2: Scamp's Adventure than this! (Suddenly goes into AVGN Mode) I'd rather go out and burn ALL copies of this movie! ALL DVD COPIES! I'D RATHER HAVE SEX WITH MICHAEL C. HALL OR JASON SCHWARTZMAN! I'D RATHER PLAY A BAD NINTENDO DS GAME LIKE PING PALS! I'D RATHER DRINK AN ALCOHOLIC DRINK! I'D RATHER STAR IN SEASON 7 OF WEEDS IN THE NEAR FUTURE! I'D RATHER TAKE A P*SS ON THE SIDEWALK, I'D RATHER GO TO SIX FLAGS DISCOVERY KINGDOM IN VALLEJO, I'D RATHER MARRY JOHN LITHGOW! I'D RATHER BUY A PS3, I'D RATHER READ BOOKS FOR BABIES, I'D RATHER WRITE A FILM FOR MICHAEL BAY AND UWE BOLL, I'D RATHER GO PICK MY NOSE AND EAT MY BOOGERS AND SH*T ALL OVER DIARRHEA DUMBF*CK AND LET MY BLU-RAY DISCS SPARKLE IN THE MICROWAVE AND SWIM IN A 723489-GALLON CUP OF ICED COFFEE AND TAKE A BATH IN A BOWL OF TOMATO SOUP AND SUE FOX AND REGENCY FOR THIS BULLF**K (Gets even more explosive) AND LISTEN TO BAD TECHNO MUSIC AND WATCH BRAZILIAN CHILDREN'S TV SHOWS ON HIGH-DEFINITION TV AND KISS DAVID DUCHOVNY 66 TIMES AND RUB JONATHAN-RHYS MEYERS' NUBBIES 30000 TIMES AND BITE MY FINGERNAILS AND TOENAILS TO A VERY PAINFUL LEVEL AND POUR BANANA SHAMPOO ALL OVER MY SALAD AND HAVE A BAGEL WITH APPLESAUCE FOR BREAKFAST AND SKIP SCHOOL FOR 66 DAYS AND GAIN WEIGHT IN THE SUMMER AND LOSE WEIGHT BY EATING CHEEZ-ITS AND MAKE REALLY BAD CARTOONS ON WINDOWS MOVIE MAKER OR APPLE IMOVIE HD AND SHOW MY NAKED SELF ON MY WEBCAM AND (Goes even more crazier and angrier) SET THINGS ON A HUGE BONFIRE WITH PROPANE TANKS AND EAT POPCORN WITH KETCUP AND SNEEZE ON THINGS THAT I TOUCH AND EAT A SANDWICH WITH WHIPPED CREAM AND PLAY APPLES TO APPLES ALL BY MYSELF AND RAPE JIMMY SMITS AND PLAY WITH MY PEEPEER 80000000000000000 DAYS A WEEK AND MAKE MISSPELLINGS WHEN TEXT MESSAGING AND WATCH LOW-QUALITY FIRST GENERATION VHS TAPES AND 11-BIT LASERDISCS AND 0-GRAPHIC BETAMAX MOVIES AND OVEREAT PEARS AND BERRIES AND GO SKIING ON FROZEN YOGURT AND PLAY OUT IN THE HEAVY RAIN 100 TIMES AND SELL POT TO EVERYONE AND PLUCK MY EYELASHES OUT AND STARE AT A WALL 365 DAYS AND GET CANCER FROM ARTIFICAL SWEETENERS AND EAT GREEN BEANS AND CHICKPEAS AND EXPLODE BODY PARTS (Now becomes her most angriest yet and is intense!) AND RUN OVER A SEARING DESERT FOR 5 HOURS AND WATCH CARS CRASH AND GET INTO BRUTAL FISTFIGHTS AND STEAL THINGS FROM THE SUPERMARKET AND DO AN OVERDOSE ON PILLS AND STOMP MY FOOT ON A CACTUS AND SHOVE MY HANDS INTO A WALL OF NEEDLES AND WASTE $%55 GIFT CARDS ON CLOTHES AND UNINSTALL SPEAKONIA I'D RATHER TAKE A HUGE EXPLOSIVE DIARRHEA OF A TORCHICD*CK ON SOMEONE WHO GREENLIT THIS AND DESTROY MY ENTIRE HOUSE AND INTOXICATE THE FRIENDS I LOVE AND QUICKLY THROW AWAY AL LMY LAPTOPS AND BOMB MY ENTIRE LIFE AND HAVE A HUGE BEE-SPIT ON THE KODAK THEATRE AND KICK SOMEONE'S BULLF**K BUTT SO HARD AND EXPLODE POOP AND SH*TF*CK ALL OVER THE PLACE AND RUN UP MY NOSE AGAINST A IONIAN POST AND HAMMER SOME PORNO ALL OVER THE WORLD AND SHOUT OUT PROFANITY SO MUCH THAT EVERYONE HATES ME PLUS HICCUPS ALSO EXPLOSIONS NOT TO MENTION GET STUNG BY WASPS 4OO TIMES DO NOT FORGET YOGURT GOING BAD DON'T FORGET SUVS PRODUCTING GAS EMISSIONS AND WHENEVER I SEE ANOITHER FILM LIKE THIS GET PRODUCED I'D GET CRAZY AND LOSE MY SANITY SO HARD AND SHOVE MY PERMAMENT MARKERS UP MY EYES AND SAY TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE, AND BAD AND ABYSMAL AND WORTHLESS AND BE PREPARED TO TAKE A P*SS AND ATTACK EVERYONE IN A TRASH BAG AND TAKE A HUGE P*SS ALL OVER THE RED CARPET AND COLLEARY AND LEE LIM AND WERB CAN ALL KISS MY MOTHERF&*^ING @$$HOLE!!!!
So, how much rewatching value and redeeming qualities does Firehouse Dog have? In terms of these two, I have this: It has....ABSOLUTELY...MOTHERF**ING NOTHING!!! F**K THIS CANINE MOVIE! IT'S THE WORST DOG MOVIE I HAVE EVER SEEN! NEVER, EVER, EVER WATCH IT -- IT IS A HUGE PIECE OF DOGSH*T!!!!!