A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this 1966 movie is a product of the era in which it was filmed, and the treatment of two Asian characters would be considered offensive by today's standards. The roles of husband and wife also seem dated. Lots of scenes of adorable puppies getting up to mischief will make this a winner for dog lovers.
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What's the story?
THE UGLY DACHSHUND is a live-action Disney movie that follows the trials and tribulations of Fran (Suzanne Pleshette) and Jim (Dean Jones) as they raise a litter of puppies born by their beloved dachshund Danke. Unbeknownst to Fran, Jim and the vet slip a Great Dane puppy into the litter, in Jim's quest for a more masculine companion. The Great Dane, Brutus, is forever getting into trouble for the mayhem caused by the other puppies, and Fran wants to get rid of him. Jim decides the only way for Fran to understand Brutus's value is to have him win a dog show which she, of course, has entered with Danke and her daughters.
Is it any good?
While scenes of puppies getting into mischief may entertain dog lovers of every age, neither plot nor the characters will win over other viewers. Fran is an unlikable nag who seems strangely vindictive to the hapless Great Dane pup, while Jim's passiveness masks a willingness to manipulate or hide facts to get his way. Plot threads are introduced and then left unresolved, like the presence of a cat burglar in the neighborhood. By the third scene of the puppies getting Brutus into trouble, we all know how it will end.
Scenes of beehive hairstyles, a milkman making a home delivery, a themed backyard barbecue, and fins on the automobiles lend a nostalgic '60s feel to the movie. Characters making fun of a Japanese character who embodies all the negative racial stereotypes of the era do not. The movie is appropriate family fare, but one viewing is probably all anyone will request.
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