Pudsey The Dog: The Movie

*

Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson

"What a shame that those aiming to cash in on the cute mutt's charms with this low-rent film didn't look for a better script."

When Pudsey - a photogenic cross between a bichon frise, a border collie and a Chinese crusty powder puff - won Britiain's Got Talent by dancing with his owner Ashleigh Butler, Simon Cowell said: "I'm looking for Oscars!"

What a shame that those aiming to cash in on the cute mutt's charms with this low-rent film didn't look for a better script. As it stands, Pudsey The Dog: The Movie, has all the hallmarks of having begun life as Pudsey: The TV Show which has then been edited to feature length in a bid to make more money.

Copy picture

Pudsey is as sweet as ever but proves to be a one-trick puppy, with director Nick Moore having to fall back on his ability to dance on his hind legs at virtually every turn. He 'plays' a London stray (inner-voiced by BGT judge David Walliams) who finds himself standing up for a group of bullied siblings - Molly (Izzy Meikle-Small), George (Spike White) and Tommy (Malachy Knights). Establishing that the kids have recently lost their dad, which has left Tommy withdrawn and silent, they and their mum (TV stalwart Jessica Hyndes, easily the best thing in this film) are about to move to the countryside village of Chuffington. Yes, Chuffington - it's name is just one of the strangely bawdy gags - also including the double entendre, 'You've got stiff nuts' - that seem to be thrown in for any adults in the audience still mourning the loss of Charles Hawtrey.

Once there, they meet a friendly local farmer (Luke Neal/West Country accent) and a nasty local farmer (John Sessions/posh tones) along with an assortment of forgetable subsidary characters, each with their own regional accent. In the barn are two horses and a pig who thinks he's a chicken and whose attempts to lay "eggs" provide a toilet humour chorus for proceedings.

The budget appears to run to little more than a couple of tins of dog food, with the animation of the horses' mouths particularly poor and the whole enterprise reminiscent of children's 1980s teatime TV such as Supergran. The plot gets pulled in so many different directions - from the grieving Tommy to a dog pound escape plan and the inevitable evil farmer planning to destroy the village - that it ends up in tatters. Even the most accommodating kids are likely to be bored after 20 minutes. Save your money and let them watch re-runs of Woof! instead.

Reviewed on: 15 Jul 2014
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The Britain's Got Talent favourite gets a starring role.
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