Christopher Guest, Eugene Levy, Parker
Posey, Michael Hitchcock, Catherine
O’Hara, John Michael Higgins, Micheal
McKean, Jennifer Coolidge, Jane Lynch,
Fred Willard, Ed Begley Jr., Bob Balaban,
Patrick Cranshaw, Don Lake
*** out of 5
guess the one single image and idea that
BEST IN SHOW brings to mind is Big Gay
Al from the TV series, South Park. The
story reveals gushing homosexuality (among
other things) between these outrageous
characters and, above all, a love for
pets. Dog lovers will delight in the screen
time given to their favorite furry friends,
and all audiences will enjoy robust rounds
of laughter throughout this film. Sadly,
there is no Oscar category for Best Comedy.
If there were, BEST IN SHOW would probably
be nominated. Whether or not it would
be deserving of this honor is a question
best answered by the amount of joy it
brings to ticket buyers.
not all dog poo jokes and animal goofing,
as one might think from viewing the trailer.
The situations are adult in nature, and
the dogs—far from what each owner would
have you think—are the second priority.
Included in the mixed-up bunch vying for
the coveted crown at this year’s Mayflower
Kennel Club Dog Show are: the owner, the
handler (Coolidge and Lynch), and the
reigning "Best of Show" poodle;
a young, high-strung urban couple (Posey
and Hitchcock) with their Weimaraner;
the righteously gay couple (Higgins and
McKean) with their Pomeranians; and Ed
Begley, Jr. as the Can-Do hotel manager
who goes out of his way to find room in
his utility closet for the Flecks of Florida
(Levy and O’Hara) and their long-shot
terrier. Also in contention, with something
to prove, are Harlan Pepper (Guest) and
his lovely, wrinkled bloodhound, who have
traveled in their RV all the way from
Pinenut, North Carolina.
bright lights of Philadelphia put a spring
in everyone’s step and a bit of anticipation
in every heart. There are reasons to love
them all, as well as moments when we see
how each specimen is not perfect either.
These animals are touted as the highest-grade
canines in their respective breeds by
the hilarious commentators of the Mayflower
show—not a small distinction in the least.
To prance and paw at the right time is
essential, and there’s no excuse for misplacing
Mr. Busy Bee, your dog’s favorite chew
toy, when attending an event of such magnitude.
you don’t like the softer side of humor,
you may be won over by the personalities
that each contestant must endure during
the grooming prior to the show. Otherwise,
if you go for the Adam Sandler slapstick,
you should wait a few weeks. (Your type
might be put right to sleep, like on those
Sunday afternoons when you doze in front
of the pet channel.) The characterizations
forged throughout this film are distinct
and enjoyable, with the exception of Coolidge’s
over-processed, lesbian wallflower. Though
it never builds past anything bigger than
the dog show itself and its residual effects,
this memorable plot and the extra special
performances contained within will bring
cheer in the new season of dreary days.
a pal and pay full price for both tickets.
worth a full-price ticket.
worth a matinee ticket.
for video rental.
out the video from the library, if you
I would never encourage anyone to destroy