Air Bud Spikes Back
By Sarah Wenk,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Cute dogs but dull plot; one of weaker Air Bud titles.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
This movie shows tween characters trying to find jobs to save up money to get something they want. The importance of teamwork and good sportsmanship also are shown throughout the movie.
Positive Role Models
Andrea wants to visit her best friend, who has just moved to California; instead of asking her parents for the money to make this happen, she finds work taking care of dogs and learns the value of saving money. She also maintains a positive attitude as she tries to improve at beach volleyball.
Violence & Scariness
Tame comedic pratfalls throughout the movie. Escaped dogs run rampant through a street fair, knocking over produce and sending an expensive vase skyward and eventually onto the dog Buddy's head. The two bad guys are thrown off a merry-go-round. There's a particularly disgusting vomit scene. Grandma Framm's parrot is kidnapped. Buddy is blamed for crimes he did not commit, which may upset younger kids.
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Products & Purchases
Banners advertising Aquafina and Nissan are in the background of a beach volleyball tournament at the end of the movie.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Air Bud Spikes Back is a 2003 sequel in the Air Bud franchise of sports-themed movies. There are some tame comedic pratfalls throughout the movie, and two bad guys are thrown off a merry-go-round. Also, Buddy is blamed for crimes he did not commit, which may upset younger kids. There is a particularly disgusting vomit scene.
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Where to Watch
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What's the Story?
In AIR BUD SPIKES BACK, golden retriever Buddy is now in the care of Andrea Framm (Katija Pevec), who discovers that Buddy is a talented volleyball player. Buddy becomes a key player on Andrea's team, and they make it into the local championship tournament. But trouble brews when a pair of incompetent thieves set their sights on an enormous diamond on display at the local museum and Grandma Framm's parrot is kidnapped. Buddy is accused of the crimes, and he must find the real culprits and avoid being captured by authorities in time to play in the big game.
Is It Any Good?
Although the dog stars are adorable (there are four dogs playing the lead), the movie would be more fun if it only featured them and dispensed with the dull plot. There are too many things going on, and none of it is very well-developed or even presented in a very interesting way.
The best sequence is one in which Andrea and her brother, Noah, start a dog-sitting service, because there's really nothing cuter than a little kid trying to wash a really big dog. Besides that soapy fun, the scenes featuring Buddy playing volleyball are entertaining -- although it's hard to imagine that the opposing teams wouldn't protest having to play against a dog. The acting is flat, the situations unrealistic, and the whole thing terribly predictable. That said, if there are dog lovers in your family, they'll enjoy the canine antics.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the responsibilities of pet ownership. How do you know if you're ready to have a pet?
How does Andrea try to get the money to visit her best friend, who's just moved to California? What's something you could do to try to make money for something you want?
How does Andrea show the importance of practice and determination when trying to get better at a sport?
- In theaters: June 20, 2003
- On DVD or streaming: January 5, 2003
- Cast: Cynthia Stevenson, Jake D. Smith, Katija Pevec
- Director: Mike Southron
- Studio: Walt Disney Pictures
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Topics: Sports and Martial Arts, Cats, Dogs, and Mice, Friendship, Great Girl Role Models
- Run time: 88 minutes
- MPAA rating: G
- Last updated: March 30, 2022
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