Saving Shiloh

Movie review by
Heather Boerner, Common Sense Media
Saving Shiloh Movie Poster Image
Cute but uneven. Best for dog lovers.
  • PG
  • 2006
  • 90 minutes

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Marty tries to do the right thing. The story encourages kids to follow their hearts.


One scene of animal abuse; the kids fall in the river and their lives are threatened, but it's handled with a light hand. The boys think they see two different dead bodies.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that a character throws a dog against a fence and threatens to beat it with a bat. The boys think they see two different dead bodies. Dara Lynn falls into a rushing river, and Marty goes in after her. Both kids, and little Shiloh, nearly drown. Escaped convicts chase after Marty and David, threatening to hurt them. Marty makes friends with a suspicious and dog-abusing old man.

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Teen, 15 years old Written bymoviecritic April 9, 2008

Not The Best

This is the third to the shiloh movies and I have to say I was dissapointed with it. The story line is confusing, and the characters didn't do such a great... Continue reading

What's the story?

In this conclusion to the Shiloh trilogy, based on the books by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, Marty's (Jason Dolley) beloved beagle has been rescued from abusive Judd (Scott Wilson). The pair are inseparable, roaming the woods around his Midwestern home together. SAVING SHILOH branches out into five distinct storylines to reveal: a community learning to look at old Judd in a different way, the power of reaching out to wounded people and animals, a kid-detective story about finding a dead body, a family drama, and a parable about the proper care and feeding of the family pooch.

Is it any good?

Saving Shiloh is all heart with an unfortunately large helping of earnest platitudes, unrealistic language, and little plot to save it. While it would be an engaging children's book , there are too many after-school specials running amok here. None of the story lines get enough traction to develop drama or suspense, and the viewer is left confused about how he's supposed to feel and why he should care. The only exception is the final scene, which follows through on the promise of the title and manages to be heartwarming.

The saving grace of Saving Shiloh is the powerful and complex performance by Scott Wilson as the wounded Judd. Since many of the other characters are wooden and sanctimonious, the viewer grows to root for Judd simply because he's the most human. In the end, Saving Shiloh will be a treat for those hooked on the series' earlier installments. For all others, consider the first movie in this series for context and to see if your kids warm to the story.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how to know if an adult is safe or not. Would you have made friends with Judd? Would you have judged him the way Marty did? After meeting someone, how do you know that they're safe? What clues did Marty use? Which would you use?

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