MPAA Rating: PG, for sequences of action peril, some mild crude humor and language
Age range: Ages 5 and up
Runtime: Approx. 111 minutes
Starring: Josh Hutcherson, Bruce Greenwood, Bree Turner, Dash Mihok, Steven Culp
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: April 4, 2007
Firehouse Dog - Guide ReviewShane Fahey (Josh Hutcherson) is struggling with a bit more on his shoulders than other kids his age. He is being raised by his single father, Connor (Bruce Greenwood), who is a the captain of a run-down firehouse known as Dogpatch. Connor is often working, and both father and son are struggling with feelings of bitterness and guilt over the death of Shane's uncle, the former captain of Dogpatch.
One day while ditching school, Shane runs into another soul who is down on his luck. Rex used to be a doggie super-star, but after he survived a sky-diving accident, he became lost and his owner thinks he's dead. Rex angers Shane by foiling his escape from two firefighters who saw him skipping school.
When the dog is later rescued from a fire by the Dogpatch team, Shane is given the responsibility of finding the lost "mutt's" owner. It doesn't take Shane long to realize that there is something different about Rex, though.
Rex's training in stunts and dog tricks made him an amazing actor, but little did anyone know that the dog's talents would be of such use in the real world. When Rex helps save another firefighter, he not only wins Shane's affection, but he also gives Dogpatch a new mascot, and new hope.
On the whole, Firehouse Dog is an exciting and fun story for kids. But, since the movie is obviously aimed at kids, one has to wonder about a few of the jokes that really didn't need to be there.
While the movie doesn't drag or lose momentum, it is 111 minutes long, which means very young kids will need a lot more popcorn and candy to make it through the entire thing.
Firehouse Dog - Note to Parents
As the MPAA states, Firehouse Dog does contain some mild crude humor and language. A few instances of such language are very obvious and will likely be repeated by kids.
A sinister plot and some moments of heavy peril may be scary or unsettling for young children. Many of the perilous scenes revolve around fire, which could be especially concerning to some children.
Firehouse Dog (2007) - Content OverviewThe following lists a few of the most prominent examples of possibly offensive content in the movie (Contains Spoilers):
- An arsonist plant a device which causes a fire. Only the arsonist's hands are shown.
- Shane confronts an arsonist and sprays him with a fire extinguisher. A huge blast occurs and a fire breaks out.
- A firefighter punches the arsonist.
- Firefighters comment that a female firefighter really is a girl when they see her in a cocktail dress.
- Rex's previous owner surprises Rex with three female poodles waiting for him on a bed.
- The words "butt," "crap," and "hell" are used.
- The phrase "Oh my God" is used.
- Rex knocks over Connor's wine rack.
- Some people are drinking at a celebration.
Bad/Disrespectful Behavior (Heavy)
- Shane ditches school because he is not prepared for a test.
- After his dad takes a game player away from him, Shane picks the lock to his dad's locker and gets it back.
- A man tells another man to set fire to buildings so that a stadium can be built in that neighborhood.
Scary Scenes (Heavy)
- The scenes listed under "Violence" may be scary or unsettling to children.
- An arsonist sets a fire in a room adjacent to where Rex is sleeping. Rex is then shown on the roof barking for help.
- Connor goes into a blazing underground tunnel to rescue another firefighter. As he tries to find her, explosions occur and it looks as though the area will cave in.
- Shane is alone in the fire station when he hears noises and realizes the arsonist is there. The two fight, there is a blast, and Shane is unconscious on the floor with fire blazing around him.
Sad/Unsettling Scenes (Moderate)
- A firefighter comments that Shane's mother split when he was two.
- In a flashback, Shane relives the day that his uncle died, relating that he feels terrible that, on that day, he felt happy that the deceased firefighter was not his father.
Firehouse Dog (2007) - Topics to Discuss
- Kids may have questions about the following concepts from the movie: Arson, single-parenthood, death of firefighters, death of a family member.
- Can dogs really do tricks like those that were shown in the movie? Do dogs really help rescue workers save lives? (Learn more about firehouse dogs and search and rescue dogs on veterinarypartner.com.