A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this movie has some mild language, as well as offensive terms like "retarded," testicle and dog poop "humor," and scenes of mild comic violence (lots of property destruction, no one hurt). Some families may be concerned about Benny telling Gordon that he should not get involved with a woman who has a child. And some will object to the anti-intellectualism of the movie, which seems to promote an irresponsible all play and no work point of view.
- Parents say
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What's the story?
Mailman Gordon (David Arquette) lives like a happy -- if hapless – slob with his roommate Benny (Anthony Anderson). But he longs for his pretty neighbor Stephanie (Leslie Bibb). When the single mom's sitter is late, he agrees to watch her son Jimmy (Angus T. Jones) for a few minutes so she can make her plane. But the sitter becomes ill and the mother can't get home. Then Agent 11, the FBI's top dog, jumps into Gordon's mail truck to escape mob assassins. Jimmy -- dubs him "Spot" and falls in love. At first, Gordon and Jimmy think there is something wrong with too-serious Spot. When Spot retrieves a woman's purse from a mugger, they misunderstand and think he attacked the man. But Agent 11 adapts to his new life and makes fun his top priority. The mob killers are still chasing Spot, and the FBI is chasing them. Stephanie is trying to get back home. Everyone arrives at once, and it is time for Agent 11 to go back to work. Or is it?
Is it any good?
Feel free to skip this flop. SEE SPOT RUN is rated-PG and heavily marketed to kids, but in the first ten minutes, the title character pooch bites off a bad guy's testicle. This is family entertainment? There's also an extended sequence with the main character sliding around in dog poop. Are you laughing yet? This movie can't even manage the dumb comedy level, even by the low standards of the genre. It does not require suspension of disbelief – it requires abandonment of basic principles of logic, consistency, and cause and effect. It is too dumb for anyone over 8 and too vulgar for anyone under 12. Come to think of it, it is too dumb and too vulgar for anyone of any age.
On the positive side, the friendship between Gordon and Benny is very nice. They tease each other, but they count on each other, and Benny proudly tells a group of rival break-dancers that Gordon is his best friend. Gordon and Jimmy talk about how to cope with not having one or both parents. And the end of the movie, in which Gordon makes his commitment to Jimmy clear, is also well done. This, however, is not enough to make the movie worthwhile.
Talk to your kids about ...
- In theaters: March 2, 2001
- On DVD or streaming: August 28, 2001
- Cast: David Arquette, Leslie Bibb, Michael Clarke Duncan
- Director: John Whitesell
- Studio: Warner Bros.
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Run time: 94 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: crude humor, language and comic violence
- Last updated: September 20, 2019
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