See Spot Run Parent Guide
Parent Movie Review
What’s a children’s movie without a boy and a dog? Throw in a boy-meets-girl scenario, and you’re sure to have a winning formula. Well, you’ll have a formula anyway.
In this case, our boy is cute little James (Angus T. Jones), son of young attractive single mother Stephanie (Leslie Bibb). They live in the same building as mailman Gordon Smith (David Arquette), a guy who some might say arrived with postage due. The beer drinking, junk food consuming couch potato dated Stephanie…once. Since then, he’s tried relentlessly to convince her that he’s not junk male. The day Stephanie has to leave town on a business trip and her babysitter is late, Gordon seizes the opportunity to prove his worth by offering to watch James for a few minutes. Seeing no other alternatives, Stephanie agrees.
The dog’s name is Agent 11. Partnered with Agent Murdoch (Michael Clarke) of the FBI, the trained canine has broken up so many plans of crime boss Sonny (Paul Sorvino), that he’s now a wanted dog. Put into the Witness Protection Program, Agent 11 should be headed for Alaska, but instead finds himself in Gordon’s mail truck. Coincidentally, James is also along for the ride, because (surprise, surprise) the babysitter never shows up. Equally unpredictable is James’ realization that the Bull Mastiff, whom he names Spot, could make a perfect pet. But even before discovering how sought after the animal is, Gordon, whose profession has prohibited positive pooch experiences, is reluctant to agree.
Children will likely laugh at bumbling crooks pursued by inept lawmen, but parents will find only stale material here. This stinky script (that ranks flatulence as funny) relies on slapstick schlock, like falling in doggie-do, or getting bit in the crotch and losing part of your anatomy.
Considering Gordon’s lack of respect for Stephanie’s parenting style, and that the couple is seldom seen together in this movie, putting the film’s third class delivery of a happy ending into reality would result in an unavoidable sequel: See Stephanie Run.Starring David Arquette. Updated April 7, 2009
See Spot Run
Rating & Content Info
Why is See Spot Run rated PG? See Spot Run is rated PG by the MPAA for crude humor, language, and comic violence.
The emphasis on a boy needing a father and a mother is heartwarming, and parents will appreciate the relatively few profanities; however the inclusion of typecast Mafia-style characters (who act like buffoons and tote guns everywhere they go), many flatulence jokes, reams of slapstick violence, and a running gag involving a man whose testicle was bit off by a dog, may have some parents running for the door faster than Spot.
All violence intended to be funny: FBI agents raid criminal meeting. FBI dog tracks criminal who fires back at dog. Dog attacks man and bites him in crotch, later scene alludes to man having lost a testicle. Postman says to other postman: “Don’t go postal on me.” Dummy target used for dog training suddenly blows up. Italian criminals often make reference to “whacking” the dog or a person—meaning to kill. Man is electrocuted, throwing him into a wall. Criminal is electrocuted and falls out of a window with dog biting his crotch causing him to lose other testicle. Man with gun holds people hostage. Man throws dog out of second story window. Many incidents of “slapstick” physical violence, often involving criminals threatening to use guns, and incidents of dogs attacking people.
Sexual Content: B-
Ongoing joke about character who loses testicles because of dog bites. The metal inserts that replace them cause him to “click” when walking. Man admires sensuous woman. Man claims he can pick up bill with his posterior, but gets stuck trying to do so (he is clothed). Man has pants accidentally removed, and pulls his t-shirt down as far as possible to cover his nakedness (which we do not see). Woman wearing negligee tries to seduce man.
At least: 9 mild profanities and 4 terms of Deity used as expletives.
Alcohol / Drug Use: B+
Man put in charge of young boy suggests they could have a couple of beers (which they don’t). Police ask man, who is acting strangely, if he’s been drinking. Brief scene of people drinking wine.
Page last updated April 7, 2009
More parents' guide for See Spot Run after the break...
See Spot Run Parents' Guide
Why do you think movies often depict criminals as clowns? Do you think real organized crime leaders would be this stupid? Can portrayals like those found in this film effect public opinion about the degree of danger these lawbreakers really represent?