Parents' Guide to

Shelby: The Dog Who Saved Christmas

By Kat Halstead, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Heartwarming Christmas comedy is full of canine chaos.

Movie NR 2014 92 minutes
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While a cute dog bringing a family together at Christmas is hardly an original concept, the strong cast and sharp script make this a fun Christmas comedy that ticks all the boxes. Schneider brings Shelby to life with the feeling of an old soul wrapped in young fur, lending a heartfelt sincerity to sad scenes, as well as a sprightly lust for life amid the requisite Christmas chaos. Arnold is perfect as his dog-catcher nemesis, Doug, and the sparring between the two makes for some of the most enjoyable scenes in the movie.

Elsewhere Chevy Chase steals the show as Jake's twinkle-eyed grandfather, and the entire cast of children have lots of fun with their roles. Though there is mild peril and some more somber moments, the movie keeps the atmosphere light and the pace fast enough to make for a fun Christmas movie the whole family can enjoy -- with crazy antics for the kids and a few knowing jokes for the adults.

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