That ‘Strays’ comes from the makers of Cocaine Bear and 21 Jump Street and a hint at the level of humour you can expect from this doggy film and like those films and despite it being the tail end of summer holidays this is certainly one that is not for the kids. Like a potty mouthed version of ‘The Incredible Journey’ the stars are the animals led by Reggie (voiced by Will Ferrell) a loveable little terrier blind to the fact that his owner Doug (Will Forte) a bong smoking layabout who hates him as Reggie was foisted on him by his then girlfriend who dumped Doug who since then seems to have dedicated himself to drink, drugs and internet porn. Reggie mistakes his masters game of, ‘Fetch – F**K! for affection even though the game comprises of Doug driving Reggie for an hour throwing a ball and driving off only for Reggie managing to find his way home and greeted Doug to utter the curse word.
But one day Doug finally does win the game and Reggie finds himself abandoned but befriended by three other dogs : Bug (Jamie Foxx ) , Maggie (Isla Fisher) and Hunter (Randall Park) and they are objective enough to see what’s really going on and open Reggie’s eyes to how Doug has treated him. And with that realization its Reggie who determines to still find his way home to Doug only this time with a mission to, ‘ bite his dick off!’ So the four set off in a kind of doggy version of a road movie encountering a variety of adventures and mishaps and perhaps learning some life lessons along the way.
Written by Dan Parrault whose previous includes the very funny satire, ‘American Vandal’ but Strays goes for gross out jokes that focus on doggy pee, pricks, puke and poop. …. A LOT of poop. Now for those who have their walks in the park spoilt by dog owners tying their bags of dog poo to the trees like some satanic Christmas tree are going to find a whole load of graphic gross out dog poo jokes here most notably in a dog pound scene (and also a later revenge scene) where many of the audience we saw it with, already accustomed to the films gross out jokes, were audibly moaning, ‘eeeew!’ in scenes that are reminiscent of John Waters infamous ‘Pink Flamingos’. That’s probably the nadir of the humour as equally there are some very funny moments and with a brilliantly bonkers self-deprecating cameo from Dennis Quaid (partly spoilt by being in the trailer).
Running at a brief 90 minutes, Strays is scatological and puerile and depending on your sensibilities that can be taken as either a recommendation or criticism.
related feature: How they got those Strays stunts done….
related feature: an IG reel of our invite to the ‘Strays’ screening
Here’s the Strays trailer…….