Reviewed by: Jonathan Bergstrom
|Featuring:||Christopher Guest, Eugene Levy, Parker Posey, Michael Hitchcock, Catherine O’Hara|
|Director:||Christopher Guest, Roberto Schaffer|
|Producer:||Gordon Mark, Karen Murphy|
|Distributor:||Castle Rock Entertainment|
What is more amusing than a subculture of people whose one passion in life is dog shows? This movie is for the strangely amused, as it is in no way conventional. It humorously mocks the story of the lives of several individuals bent on having the best dog in show. Director Christopher Guest has carved a niche in the movie making business as the artist of “Mockumenetaries”. His style is that of 60 minutes with a big boost on stupidity throughout. He plays off of the absurdities of what the people on this planet find to occupy their time. Although a completely stupid movie, I could not stop laughing. Guest’s style is one that I enjoyed more in his first movie “Waiting for Guffman”. And I would certainly recommend renting that one before testing your appetite for Guest at the movie theater.
The movie follows its subjects on their path to glory in winning the acclaimed Mayflower Dog Show. Documentary style interviews are mostly impromptu, as hardly any of this movie was scripted. If you enjoy the offbeat humor that normally accompanies improv British theater, you are a good candidate for Guest’s humor. He is very sarcastic, and it is laid on heavy in this movie.
If you are looking for a well-written, slick Hollywood production, this will certainly miss the mark. If you are creative enough, you can watch this movie as a display of good improvising and on the spot writing; although it sometimes falls short. I would have to stretch pretty far to try and assimilate a good moral or lesson from this movie. At best, I can say that it puts into perspective just how meaningless life can become when living without a purpose. It is mostly harmless as long as you can shrug off a bit of over-the-top homosexual behavior (see comments below for more details). Overall, it lends a kick in the pants and a great big “stop-taking-life-so-seriously”.