Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Mill Creek Entertainment Life With Dog Review

Mill Creek Entertainment sent us the movie Life With Dog to watch and review.

As of yesterday (June 4, 2019), the DVD release of Life With Dog is available at Walmart stores.  You can also find it online at Amazon here.

Our dog, Stevie, posing with our new movie

Official Movie Synopsis:
 After losing his wife Alice (Marilu Henner) in a mysterious bike accident, Joe Bigler (Corbin Bernsen) is left alone without faith to help him grieve.  That and the circumstances of Alice's accident leave more questions than answers, and Joe begins a fast descent into the dark abyss of uncertainty.  But his salvation arrives when a dog wanders into his garden and won't leave despite Joe's many attempt to rid him.  Without so much as a single bark, "Dog" as Joe has named him, shares his voice; a deep love and comfort that Joe has never experienced before.  With Dog's love comes the discovery of God's love, and a faith that not only helps Joe toward the road to recovery, but also the unsolved mystery surrounding his wife's accident, and the ability to finally grieve her passing.

Our Thoughts:
 Life With Dog has a run time of 106 minutes and is not rated (NR rating).  This movie is intense.  I found myself yelling at the screen a lot.  Let me share some of the kids thoughts before more of my own.

A really liked the dog and how he helped Joe with his anger issues.  She liked the movie but like me thought it was a bit intense.  B thought it was hard to watch because Joe kept making bad choices over and over throughout the movie.  Joe was expecting God to be systematic (he prays and gets what he wants) and that's not how being a Christian works.  It reminded her of real life and how not everybody believes in Jesus, especially in hard times and during a crisis.  It's too much for her to watch again.  C's favorite thing about the movie was the dog itself.  He liked how he happened to always be there when needed, how he ended up helping more than one person, and how he helped solve the mystery (spoiler).  He didn't like that Joe kept blaming people for things when he didn't know for certain who was at fault.

This film opens with a hit-and-run bicycle accident scene and you soon learn that Joe's wife died in the accident.  Joe is convinced the building company taking over his neighborhood had something to do with it.  Throughout the film, Joe has conversations with his late wife and you see her appear in various scenes.  She is always colorful and bright and when she vanishes you see the contrast of the dim and dark rooms more vividly.  Personally, this film was a miss for me.  I will say that this movie gives you a lot of topics that you can discuss and bring up with your kids like loss of a loved one and dealing with grief, anger, independence, paranoia, the power of assumption, and foreclosure to name a few.  The dog was cute and a great addition to the film but he couldn't carry the whole movie and he couldn't keep it "lighter."  I felt like most of the movie was in a heavy, dark place.  I kept waiting for the mention of God's love and so much more and it just didn't come.  I felt like the few glimpses were weaker than they should have been.  I was also expecting more of a character arc with Joe.  I felt like a majority of the movie was watching Joe continuously make bad choices without true consequences or minor ones at that.  It does touch on the concept of forgiveness but I felt like it was pretty late in the game and fairly weak.  This may be a spoiler but I was personally bothered by the fact that Joe pointed a gun and threatened two different people's lives in this film.  That was hard for my kids, even my older ones so for us it didn't hold to "family friendly."  So, while I am a huge fan of Christian movies (keep making them Mill Creek Entertainment)  I actually cannot recommend this one.  For me, the bad outweighed the good.  I'd love to hear your thoughts though!  I do appreciate that they tackled some tough issues.

Check out the trailer below.

Want to know more?  Be sure to click on the banner below to visit the Homeschool Review Crew blog to read more reviews and other opinions of Life With Dog.

Life With Dog {Mill Creek Entertainment Reviews}

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