Once in awhile a movie comes along that makes you feel the magic of the holidays. A warm touching happy movie, or perhaps a laugh out loud satire that reminds you it's Christmas. This movie is neither.
The story is of Zeus (why they chose that name for a dog is beyond me, as Zeus in greek mythology, the god of thunder was known for doing it with anything female.) who is in the pound because barking while being a police dog he screwed up an operation so he no longer will bark. Meanwhile, George Banister (remember him as Danny Heffernan on King of Queens? Believe it or not he was more lovable there), some guy who seems to be beginning a mid life crisis decides to get a dog (since he had his dog taken as a child so he feels a need to get one) to help prevent a burglary in the house while his wife would prefer an alarm and a cat to deal with the mice (who were voiced by obnoxious sounding children). His 2 children (who act like they have been lobotomized) couldn't be more thrilled with the dog (at least as far as I could tell by there acting in that movie). Meanwhile Ted Stein (Dean Kain, what happened man? You are so better then this kind of thing) and his partner whose name I forget (I think the guy was on the Sopranos) play the role of the burglars who graduated from the "Marv and Harry school of robbery" (albeit with all c's in comic timing) who decide that the Banister home is just the house they need to rob. Despite being the near perfect dog, Zeus is forced to prove himself to the family as valuable or get sent back to the pound. So Zeus defends the house on Christmas (after partially tearing it apart) He even barks after getting persuasion from the cat lady (who was really a dog person til her dog attacked her and it had to be destroyed) and is able to defeat the criminals by breaking several laws of physics. The movie ends with the family coming back, the cops wanting Zeus for his capturing of the criminals but the family then decides they want to keep him.
The writing in this movie was just bad... seriously like Ben 10 season 1 bad, much like that I think this movie might have been minutely better muted. I mean the wife got a guy to test the dog for if he was capable of working as a a guard dog and yet they went away leaving the dog in the house, the house unprotected on christmas eve.
Elisa Donovan deserves the award for "Ice Queen of the Year" for her role as Belinda Banister, a woman who would probably be Cruella De Vil if dog hair everywhere wasn't a turn off for her though she seems incaple of showing any strong emotion anyway, so I'm left wondering if a woman is lobotimized, would that get transfered to the children?
Final thoughts on this movie, there are so many good family movies you can see for the holidays, A Charlie Brown Christmas, Rudolph the red nose Reindeer, The Santa Clause, The Grinch who stole Christmas, Several different flavors of A Christmas Carrol which are targeted at kids.... anyway my point is there are so many better movies then this film to watch with your kid. Unless you are a dog fan who just wants to look at a fairly cute, albeit fat, Yellow Labrador Retriever there is no good reason to watch this film.