Man’s Best Friend: The Breed (2006)

I really like that poster. Not so much the tagline, because it’s easy for dogs to smell fear (smells like poo), but that’s a fucking fantastic poster image. It’s just ripe for a load of tasteless doggy style jokes that I will, thankfully, hold back from. Anyhoo, I’m back in the kennel having a look at one of the more recent Killer Dog films. This time, it’s Wes Craven produced The Breed, a less than auspicious entry from 2006.

May contain happy dogs with their tails wagging and spoilers.

I’m always surprised by how good Rodriguez’ rack is.

This is, and I know this is not going to come as a shock, not a very good film. I’m starting to think that it’s actually not as easy as it sounds to do a good Killer Dog film. Man’s Best Friend is a hilarious mess of a film, and Cujo benefits from having ridiculously strong source material. However, this is the second out of 4 films that I’m not over the moon about. I genuinely think that Cujo should be the model for almost all of these type of films- in that I mean that less is genuinely more more often than not.

Nicki was not ready when John slipped his pinky finger somewhere he shouldn’t have. I never get bored of these gags.

In this instance, we’re introduced to Nicki, John, Sara, Matt and Noah (Michelle Rodriguez, Oliver Hudson, Taryn Manning, Erik Lively and Hill Harper respectively). They’re flying a seaplane out to Matt and John’s island (yes, you did read that properly. Talk about a way to make me totally lose sympathy for the characters in the first seconds of the film) for some hard-core partying. Helping out even less in the likeability stakes is that 3 (minimum) of these 5 characters are utter dickheads as well, with Noah in particular begging to be fed to a pack of angry dogs. Feet first, so he can watch himself die, naturally.   Anyhoo, on arrival it’s clearly time to party on Garth!

Douchebags.

Right, apologies for that, but I’m struggling with this review. Basically, this is the plot from here on in: a cunning puppy lures Sara into an ambush and she’s bitten. Luckily, she manages to escape and make it back to the house. Instead of getting the fuck out of dodge, our group of douchebags decide to stay behind and party. Let me just make this clear- she’s been bitten, and instead of getting her medical treatment (a rabies shot) they think the best plan of action is to hang around. Anyhow, next day, they find themselves in a terrible battle of survival against a pack of feral and far too intelligent dogs. Why are the pooches so bright? Because grandpa/ uncle/ cunt that owned the island has been injecting them with a modified form of rabies. So who will survive the battle with the supercharged pack of feral bastards (hint: Noah may as well be called Token)?

Robin Hood you are not.

This film is shite. It’s got a number of huge problems. The cast are all really quite accomplished, if too old for their parts, and Rodriguez tries really hard with a frankly awful role as Nicki. This is the problem, really, it’s the writing. To start with, I don’t like these characters at all. In fact, I can honestly say that I really, really hate them. The least hateful of them, Sara, has to spend 2/3 of the movie faking rabies and having telepathic moments with the dogs (yes, you did read that correctly) whereas the rest of them are just colossal fucking arseholes. The dialogue is even worse, and there’s a frankly interminable scene with Matt and John arguing because John is a fuck up and Matt feels robbed that he never got the chance to fuck up or some such utter drivel. John, actually, is such a ginormous penis that I half expect him to vomit torrents of jizz on to the floor if someone strokes his back. Not to mention that the fucker is so incompetent that he accidentally supplies the biggest laugh in the film when he mistakenly shoots Nicki in the leg with a bow and arrow aiming at a dog. Nice one, cockwomble. As for Noah, every single time he opens his mouth it’s to be a prick. I spent the entire film wanting to punch him, and let out a small cheer when he finally got eaten by the pack.

This is a problem with this film- the dogs do a lot of standing around, and although John may be an utter fumbletrumpet who accidentally shoots Nicki from 6 feet aiming at the dog, he’s still got a bow and arrow, and they aren’t moving. Why not pick them off one by one?

Talking about the pack, they aren’t great either. The first problem is that there’s fucking loads of them, and secondly, they’re all mixed breeds. This shouldn’t matter, but as they’ve assembled a pack, they’ve blundered into a problem: getting a group of dogs to behave isn’t as easy as it sounds. To get round this, they’ve cast very well trained but clearly very friendly dogs. So, every time we’ve got a scene where a dog is about to chomp on someone, we can see a happy Labrador wagging his tail and jumping up and down. This is particularly apparent in the scene with Rodriguez crossing the wire, when we get many aerial shots of the dogs, and they’re all sitting there with their tongues out having a great time. Not scary, dudes, not scary at all.

Look at the expressions on the faces of the three in the background. Hilarious.

This is also an amazingly overwritten film. Within seconds it’s obvious that these dogs aren’t behaving like ordinary animals. Fine, I can deal with that. What annoys me is that they’ve been tampered with by Movie Scientists, one of which was dead uncle or whatever. So why do we have to get a bucket load of exposition about this, and possible feelings of guilt from the two (previously shown to be incapable of remorse) brothers. Why are they guilty? Did they do it? No. Furthermore, it’s actually to the detriment of the film that Sara develops mild telepathy with the pack (or whatever it is) because it doesn’t go anywhere and serves as a mildly irritating distraction.

9 out of 10 Dogs prefer Pedigree Chum. Failing that, they’ll chow down on some arseholes.

This is exactly what I mean about less being more, because there is the germ of a good film in here (albeit buried deep inside). It adds nothing to what is essentially survival horror for them to be fighting off Superdog’s evil relatives. There isn’t even any of the entertaining battyness of Man’s Best Friend (no predator dog, for example) to break the overwhelming monotony of the film. Strip out the extraneous nonsense that pollutes the narrative, do something about the fucking dickheaded characters, throw in some boob, and trim down the number of dogs and you’ve got an almost functional movie. Unfortunately, none of that took place when the movie was in development. So instead we’ve got a film that I struggled to get through.

John regretted keeping his emergency Bacon Sarnie in his breast pocket

Overall, this is wank. The Breed, which while I’m thinking about it is a stupid fucking title for a film featuring 90 different breeds and mongrels of dogs, unless they’re talking about the rabies virus uniting them all as one breed or some shit like that, is an utter bucket of shit. Ordinarily, I’d be tempted to Orangutan of Doom a film like this, but I did genuinely laugh when John shot Nicki in the leg with the arrow, so I’ll let it off. Instead, The Breed is a very, very bad fucking boy, and it’s left a poop on my new rug, so I’m going to rub its nose in it.

Next up in this series is not set yet.

But until then,

Jarv.

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About Jarv

Workshy cynic, given to posting reams of nonsense on the internet and watching films that have inexplicably got a piss poor reputation.

48 responses to “Man’s Best Friend: The Breed (2006)”

  1. Jarv says :

    Not a fan of this film. Just in case that’s not clear.

  2. Just Pillow Talk says :

    Someone should make a similar movie, but cast midgets vs. small breed dogs, like minature poodles and weiner dogs and such.

  3. Just Pillow Talk says :

    The “Douchebags” caption had me laughing. Short and sweet, and right to the point.

    Rodriguez does indeed have some nice funbags.

  4. Continentalop says :

    Good review for what sounds like a crappy movie, Jarv.

    Glad this is bad, because it stars Manning and I am avoiding all of her movies. She’s dating a douchebag that I know and have worked with. He’d fit right in that photo.

    • Jarv says :

      What’s she like? She’s not too bad in this, but not great.

      • Continentalop says :

        I’ve never really met her. Just once briefly during an ADR session for some TV show. She seemed cool though, but I think we said like 3 sentences to each other.

        Danny DeVito was the coolest guy I ever did ADR with; Richard Belzar was the biggest asshole during his (but in his defense I think he really hated the project).

      • Jarv says :

        Richard Belzar was the biggest asshole during his (but in his defense I think he really hated the project).

        That’s surprising. Weird. So, what did you do with her boyfriend?

      • Continentalop says :

        She started dating that douchebag after I worked with him.

      • Jarv says :

        Is he just a massive prick? She’s quite hot, not uberhot, but reasonable looking. Held her own in this, even with the stupidity of dog telepathy and whatnot.

      • Continentalop says :

        I’m not going to say much, not because the guy is powerful (he is a nobody who pretends to be a big shot) but because the guy is very litigious. I’m not even going to put his name down because he is the type of guy to google his own name.

        But I will say that I worked in an above-the-line position, in a film that probably would have helped my career if he didn’t scuttle the fucking thing because of his huge ego. Now it will probably never be released, and even if it does it will be a butchered version. He personally set back my career about decade.

        I should really see if Taryn is still dating him, I can’t imagine her sticking with him that long.

      • Jarv says :

        Fair enough. I don’t want suing either.

        Was he Don Murphy?

      • Jarv says :

        Musician? Because if it’s who I think it is, then one of my best mates has met him a few times and doesn’t have a particularly high opinion of him.

      • koutchboom says :

        Did he help get her rap/pop career in full swing?

      • Continentalop says :

        If it was Don Murphy I would be more than willing to spill the beans.

        Plus, I can’t imagine Taryn Manning ever lowering herself to sleeping with Jabba the Hutt’s fatter, uglier brother.

      • Jarv says :

        Not even if he threatened her with “You’ll never have lunch in this town again” (forgotten where I got that joke).

        Incidentally, the reason she’d never have lunch again is because the fat cunt ate every single restaurant in LA out of food. Even the ones with Health and Safety problems.

      • Xiphos0311 says :

        Richard Belzar always comes across in interviews as a giant cocksucker but that’s because he’s a truther and conspritard. those bitch ass motherfuckers are all humps..

  5. Continentalop says :

    Not a musician. Or I never knew he was one.

    Sorry to make my comment about him into a blind item.

    • Jarv says :

      That’s alright. I’ve just used the power of google and she’s got lots of douchebags on her arm. I just spotted one that I thought may be him and I happen to have heard he’s a bellend.

  6. Continentalop says :

    Well, fuck me. Just looked up that project I worked on with him, and see that it is finally being released, but I am no longer getting my credit (they’re giving me a much lesser one).

    Fucking assholes.

  7. ThereWolf says :

    Fumbletrumpet!

    You’ve not completely put me off watching this actually, Michelle Rodriguez for a start. But I was quite shocked and startled by the level of sarcasm contained in this review. Does sound like it scores high on the cack-ometer.

    Nice one, Jarvis.

  8. tombando says :

    Needs Giant Robots? I like Michelle R however.

  9. Droid says :

    I wonder why it’s so difficult to make a decent horror film. The ratio must be stuck around the 3% mark.

    I like the bacon sarnie caption. Funny.

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