Movies About Dogs

New York Dog Film Festival

Dog owners love movies about dogs. There is nothing more certain than that we will choke up and cry at some point during one of these films. You’ll get your chance soon to see a whole bunch of new movies about dogs next week. That’s when the fourth annual New York Dog Film Festival premieres.

Founded by pet wellness advocate (and Weimaraner owner!) Tracie Hotchner, the festival is “is a philanthropic celebration of the love between dogs and their people.”

To get in the mood, I decided to watch and write about a whole bunch of recent movies about dogs. Starting with…

Isle of Dogs

I have a love / hate relationship with Wes Anderson’s films. I loved The Grand Hotel Budapest. I hated The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. For every Anderson film I enjoy, I can probably come up with one that drove me crazy, so I approached Isle of Dogs with a bit of trepidation.

Wes has nothing to worry about. I loved this movie!

movies about dogs

It’s about an evil mayor who hates dogs and exiles them to the Isle of Dogs (say the title really fast.) A young boy runs off the island to search for his missing pooch, Spots.

The film is done using very cool stop motion animation and features the voices of a gazillion different movie stars. I am totally not doing it justice… watch the trailer below really get a feel for this film.

You can watch it through iTunes, Amazon Prime, and VUDU.

Show Dogs

Okay. This is not a film for adults.

But even though it’s for kids, I did laugh out loud a few times.

It’s about a rough, uncouth police dog who has to go undercover at a dog show in order to bust an exotic animal smuggling ring.

The trailer below is a very good representation of this movie.

You can watch it through Google Play, Amazon Prime, and VUDU.


Alpha is about a caveman who gets gored by a bison; falls off a cliff; gets separated from his tribe; is attacked by a wolf; wounds the wolf; then nurses the wolf back to health; befriends the wolf, names the wolf “Alpha;” and then braves all sorts of trials and tribulations in order to get back to his tribe (along with Alpha, of course!)

I was like, “Right. He should’a died when he fell off the cliff.”

That said, the movie is gorgeous to look at, and since it’s essentially just a “boy and his dog” movie, I got all choked up during all the chokey uppy scenes.

You can watch it through iTunes, and Amazon Prime.

A Dog’s Purpose

Another variation of a boy and his dog. This time reincarnation plays a role. According to this film, dog’s get reincarnated until they fulfill their purpose. In this movie we watch our dog hero go through several lives, helping and teaching his owners as he goes along.  The twist? After several lives, he ends up with his original owner, who is now several decades older. The dog helps his owner (who doesn’t recognize him until later) reconnect with his teen sweetheart.

This film got some bad press concerning the handling of one of the dogs in it. I didn’t really like it, it was very corny, but since it was a “boy and his dog” movie, I, once again, choked up and / or cried at all the sappy, sentimental moments.

You can watch it through iTunes, Amazon Prime, Showtime, Google Play, and VUDU.

Pick of the Litter

I LOVED this movie!

It’s a documentary about a litter of Golden Retrievers who are enrolled in a rigorous training regimen to become seeing eye dogs.

I am not going to say anything more than that you HAVE to watch it!

You can watch it through Amazon Prime and Google Play.

And to see new films about dogs, check out the New York Dog Film Festival. Click here for info about the films appearing in the Festival.  And here to buy tickets. It takes place at the SVA Theater on West 23 Street in Manhattan, with showings on Sunday, December 2 at 1:00 PM and 2:45 PM.


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