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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Some bathroom humor.
Violence & Scariness
Mild peril, no one hurt. Mild peril.
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Some schoolyard naughty words.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Dogs get tipsy on laughing gas.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that there are some mild naughty words in this movie ("screwed up"), a couple of mild double entendres, and some potty jokes. The dogs are exposed to laughing gas and get a little tipsy. Characters face a little mild peril and some tense situations, but everything turns out fine. One of the movie's strengths is its understated, even casual, portrayal of a diverse community, including a nice friendship between an African-American girl and a white boy. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Good Boy is a not-so-good movie, but it's not so bad, either. It's a watered-down canine version of ET. It is not particularly imaginative and it goes on too long, dragging through the last half hour. But it has a cute kid and some even cuter dogs. The children at the screening I attended laughed and "awwwed" and applauded, and I found myself smiling a couple of times, too. That makes it a mild little entertainment suitable for a second-grader's birthday party outing.
Atkins has a nice screen presence and a terrific smile. Shannon and Nealon are wasted in under-written roles. The script saves its best moments for the dogs, and top-notch stars lend their distinctive voices to the dog characters. Highlights include Matthew Broderick as Hubble, Vanessa Redgrave as the ruler of the Dog Star, along with Cheech Marin, Carl Reiner, Delta Burke, and Donald Faison.
Did we miss something on diversity?
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Our Editors Recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate