aka The Three Dogateers
A Hollywood Media Bridge Movie
Dean Cain as Matt
Richard Riehle as Santa
Bill Oberst Jr. as Barney Gloat
Andrea Monier as Lisa
Jess Baget as Arfamis / Barkos
Danielle Judovits as Wagos
Sabrina Gomez as Nurse
Barkos, Wagos, and their fearless leader, Arfamis are left to guard their owner's house on Christmas Eve. When thieves break in and steal all the presents, decorations and even the Christmas tree, these canine heroes must become valiant Dogateers.
Embarking on a dangerous journey to save Christmas, the trio travel across their sprawling metropolis home in search of Santa Claus, who might just hold the key to solving the perilous quest.
All the while, they must beware of a devious dogcatcher who is hell-bent on capturing the four-legged heroes and spoiling the festive season. As morning draws closer, can the Dogateers triumph and save Christmas for all?
Well, with the Christmas season upon us and in full flow, the deluge of children's and family movies set during the season is also here and bombarding us with movie after movie. Most are largely forgettable and others become classics.
The Three Dogateers Save Christmas is one of those movies that is very much in the same vein as the Buddies movies that Disney put out albeit this one is on a much smaller budget.
If you are going in to this movie as an adult wanting a rough and tumble movie that will have loads of jokes for the parents out there to understand as well then you are a little bit out of luck. However, if you go in to this movie wanting a movie that will be suitable for the little ones and will keep them entertained for 90 minutes then this one fits the bill.
This movie doesn't set out to change the movie world and it knows that so goes on in a funny and light hearted way.
What this movie does have is a sense of fun and doesn't even remotely try to take itself seriously. The small budget is relatively well used and they do well with the animation of the dogs when they talk. It may not be as smooth as the dogs in the Buddies movies but they are still very well done considering the limitations.
With the sense of fun and general silliness that runs through this movie, the cast know that it's not a movie to be taken at all seriously and with that you get some really funny moments of both hamming it up and over acting. Dean Cain, famous for his role as Clark Kent / Superman in Lois and Clark, comes across as genuinely funny as the man rushed off to do a job at the very last minute. He hams it up brilliantly well in the few scenes he's in and brings a good energy to the movie itself.
One member of the cast that I was surprised at was the king of horror himself, Bill Oberst Jr. as an evil dogcatcher. He really does look like he is having a whale of a time chasing the intrepid trio of hounds and it shows in his performance. I'm used to seeing him in all sorts of gory movies so it was a pleasant change to see him in a family movie as well.
All in all, this movie is never going to be one that will go down as one of the all time classic Christmas movies but at the same time, there are much worse ways to spend 90 minutes with the little ones. It will definitely keep them entertained and in such a busy time of the year, I'm sure all the parents out there will appreciate a few minutes of peace.