Skip to main content

Dan's Review: "Max" is one dog of a movie

Jun 26, 2015 12:55AM ● Published by Dan Metcalf

Josh Wiggins in Max - © 2015 - Warner Bros.

Max (Warner Bros.)

Rated PG for action violence, peril, brief language and some thematic elements.

Starring Josh Wiggins, Dejon LaQuake, Thomas Haden Church, Robbie Amell, Lauren Graham, Luke Kleintank, Jay Hernandez, Miles Mussenden, Mia Xitlali, Joseph Julian, Owen Harn, Walid Hakim.

Written by Boaz Yakin and Sheldon Lettich.

Directed by Boaz Yakin.

GRADE: D+

REVIEW

Dogs are the embodiment of unconditional love. When they give you “that face,” the one with those brown eyes full of trust and devotion, there’s almost nothing people won’t do for them. Some dogs are heroes, too. Max is a movie about a heroic military dog that suffers from PTSD and tries to assimilate into family life after suffering tragedy in the Iraq War.

The story involves a U.S. Marine named Kyle Wincott who is a dog handler to Max, a German Shepard trained to sniff out war hazards like bombs and other weapons during the Iraq War. On the home front, Kyle’s younger teen brother Justin (Josh Wiggins) is less than thrilled with his hero brother and the dog, feeling like he’ll never measure up to his parents’ (Thomas Haden Church and Lauren Graham) expectations. When Kyle is killed in battle, the Marines allow Max to attend the funeral, even though the dog is experiencing trauma after losing his master in an intense firefight. Max shows some kind of connection to Justin, but is hostile toward all others. Max’s military custodians tell the Wincott family that the dog will be put down unless Justin becomes the dog’s new master.

Max goes to live with the Wincotts, but Justin isn’t pleased with the arrangement. Eventually, he warms up to the dog after his best pal’s cousin Carmen (Mia Xitali) teaches him a few tricks. Soon after the funeral, Tyler (Luke Kleintank), one of Wincott’s Marine pals shows up, claiming the dog actually caused the incident that led to Kyle’s death. It turns out that Tyler wimped out during the fateful firefight and is also running a stateside illegal weapons operation with intent to sell guns and explosives to Mexican drug cartels.

When Justin and his dad discover the truth about Tyler, their lives are jeopardy, and Max must use his military training to save them.

Max could have been a heartwarming story about a dog and a family dealing with the tragedy of war, but it ended up being a whole lot of sappy, trite garbage, wrapped around a plot suitable for a Scooby Doo episode, complete with a dog and meddling kids thwarting the plans of an evil mastermind.

There are a few sweet moments with the dog in Max, but they are all lost on a story that makes little sense, and a lot of ham-fisted attempts at patriotism. I’m sure there are plenty of real military hero dog stories out there that would have made for a better film than Max, which seems more suited for a Disney Channel TV movie.

Max Trailer

Arts+Entertainment
  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    10/23/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


It looks like we don't have any events for this date. You can always add an event.

  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    10/25/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • Garden After Dark - Adventures in Wonderland

    10/26/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Join us for an enchanted evening as we journey down the rabbit hole to the whimsical, wonderful w...


  • R.C.I.A.

    10/26/2017
    06:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • Instruction Classes

    10/26/2017
    07:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    10/23/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    10/25/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • Garden After Dark - Adventures in Wonderland

    10/26/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Join us for an enchanted evening as we journey down the rabbit hole to the whimsical, wonderful w...


  • R.C.I.A.

    10/26/2017
    06:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • Instruction Classes

    10/26/2017
    07:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    10/27/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • Garden After Dark - Adventures in Wonderland

    10/27/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Join us for an enchanted evening as we journey down the rabbit hole to the whimsical, wonderful w...


  • Garden After Dark - Adventures in Wonderland

    10/28/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Join us for an enchanted evening as we journey down the rabbit hole to the whimsical, wonderful w...


  • theBRIDGE Church Grand Opening!

    10/29/2017
    10:00AM — 11:30AM

    Join us this Sunday at 10am @ the Daybreak Community Center in South Jordan, UT!


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    10/30/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    11/01/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • R.C.I.A.

    11/02/2017
    06:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • Instruction Classes

    11/02/2017
    07:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    11/03/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • Garden Adventures - Squishy Squash

    11/04/2017
    10:00AM — 11:30AM

    Did you know that squash are actually fruits and NOT vegetables? Learn more about squash and disc...


  • Free Anti-Bullying Class

    11/04/2017
    10:00AM — 11:00AM

    Gracie Barra Sandy hosts a free self defense class once a month on the first Saturday of every mo...


  • Local Authors & You - Booksigning

    11/04/2017
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Saturday, November 4 1-5 pm Are you an aspiring author hoping to be published? Do you enjoy m...


  • theBRIDGE Church Grand Opening!

    11/05/2017
    10:00AM — 11:30AM

    Join us this Sunday at 10am @ the Daybreak Community Center in South Jordan, UT!


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    11/06/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    11/08/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • Salt Lake City Sales Job

    11/09/2017
    09:00AM — 12:30PM

    Salt Lake City Professional Career Event - Sales & Management Specific HireLive is a national ...


  • Salt Lake City Sales Job Fair

    11/09/2017
    09:00AM — 12:30PM

    Salt Lake City Professional Career Event - Sales & Management Specific HireLive is a national ...


  • Salt Lake City Sales Job Fair

    11/09/2017
    09:00AM — 12:30PM

    Salt Lake City Professional Career Event - Sales & Management Specific HireLive is a national ...


  • R.C.I.A.

    11/09/2017
    06:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • Champions of Magic

    11/09/2017
    07:00PM — 09:00PM

    Following in the footsteps of Downton Abbey, John Oliver and James Corden, the latest British sen...


  • Murray High School's Brigadoon

    11/09/2017
    07:00PM — 09:30PM

    Murray High Schools Theatre Department's Brigadoon!


  • Instruction Classes

    11/09/2017
    07:45PM — 09:00PM

    Has your child, grandchild, friend ever ask you why Catholic believe this or do that? Can you exp...


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    11/10/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


  • Garden Adventures - Fantastic Fall Foliage

    11/11/2017
    10:00AM — 11:30AM

    Have you ever wondered why green leaves change to red, yellow, orange, and brown in the fall? Joi...


  • David Tolk Autumn Piano Concert

    11/11/2017
    07:30PM — 08:30PM

    Join Billboard charting pianist and Draper resident, David Tolk, for a an evening of peaceful con...


  • theBRIDGE Church Grand Opening!

    11/12/2017
    10:00AM — 11:30AM

    Join us this Sunday at 10am @ the Daybreak Community Center in South Jordan, UT!


  • FIT4MOM Murray Stroller Strides

    11/13/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    FIT4MOM, the nation’s largest fitness program for new moms, has arrived in Murray. Stroller Strid...


 

Online Edition
Follow My City Journals on Facebook
Advertise with us

 

City Journals 9500 South 500 West, Suite 205, Sandy, Utah 84070 801.254.5974