By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs
I'm surprised that Snoop Dogg
missed out on being in the very R-rated comedy "Strays."
The canine caper, from director Josh Greenbaum
("Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar") and screenwriter Dan Perrault
(TV's "Players") seems perfectly suited for Snoop.
Then again, "Strays" is so loaded with an impressive voice cast that includes Jamie Foxx ("They Cloned Tyrone"), Will Ferrell ("Barbie"), Will Forte (TV's "HouseBroken"), Sofia Vergara (TV's "America's Got Talent") and Randall Park (TV's "Young Rock"), among others. Snoop's cut, "Gz and Hustlas," is however, featured on the movie soundtrack.
Still, a cameo by the charismatic rapper would have certainly added to the laughter. Don’t worry, there are more than enough laughs to be had in "Strays" provided you aren't easily offended by sexually explicit language, and crude and lewd behavior from both people and dogs. Despite all the cute and cuddly canines, "Strays," isn't a kid's movie. It doesn't just push the envelope; it rips it to shreds. I'm actually shocked this movie wasn't slapped with an NC-17 rating.
The story centers around a group of talking stray dogs. Reggie (Ferrell) is a cute Border Terrier who only wants to be loved by his loser and pothead owner Doug (a funny Will Forte). The thing is, Doug never wanted Reggie. He kept him mainly out of spite for his ex-girlfriend. Now, Doug wishes Reggie was out of his life too.
Rather than take him to the pound for adoption or give him to someone who would appreciate him, Doug plays these really cruel tricks and games with Reggie. He takes the dog far from home and makes him fetch a ball, then he leaves him thinking Reggie won't find his way back to him. Much to Doug's dismay, Reggie always does.
One day, Doug drives him so far away that Reggie surprisingly gets completely lost and winds up in a rough part of town. That's when he meets Bug (Foxx), a wise-cracking Boston Terrier who kind of rules the streets and enjoys humping anything he wants including a dirty, old couch (voiced by Vergara). Bugs hangs with his best friends, Maggie, an Australian shepherd (Isla Fisher, "Godmothered") and a Great Dane named Hunter (Park).
When Reggie tells Bug how Doug plays with him, he and the other dogs have a good laugh. They explain that Doug doesn't care about him and that he wants to get rid of him. Of course, Reggie doesn't believe them at first. As they band together, Reggie discovers he likes his new four-legged friends, and that Doug was indeed using him and being a flat-out jerk.
The dogs convince Reggie to get revenge on his owner and specifically bite off a certain piece of his anatomy. They vow to help him. Along the way, they get into all sorts of crazy mischief that includes a funny scene of them eating wild mushrooms and landing in a kennel.
Most of the gags are amusing. Others, including a vomit and extended poop scene, are more disgusting than comical. Some, like Will Forte masturbating and shaving his pubic hair, you just can't unsee and recover from.
There's also a clever setup featuring Josh Gad ("Frozen III") as a "Narrating Labrador Retriever." It's a take on his movie "A Dog's Purpose." The comical bit also features a cameo of Dennis Quaid ("The Hill").
Yet, for all of the crassness of "Strays," by the end, the movie manages to turn into a rather sweet story about responsible dog ownership and the joys of being man's best friend.
Even so, "Strays" wins the top award for being the most shameless, foul, and vulgar movie of the year. You’ve been warned.
Watch This Trailer For "STRAYS"
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