The Boy Dog Adventure Gets Lost in the Shuffle
Max is a military service dogs that can sniff out bombs or weapons. Humans have trained dogs like Max to search for drugs, firearms, or other devices for centuries. These dogs are a lot like the K-9 units in police forces except their job is a lot more dangerous. The animal, and their handler usually bond and the bond lasts for the animal’s lifetime.
Max and his handler, Kyle, are serving in Afghanistan. Max’s primary job is to search for weapons or other harmful objects can be used against the American forces. Kyle is killed in action, and Max suffers from post traumatic stress disorder. He is incapable of working with other military handlers. The commander of the training facility where Max and Kyle were trained contacts Kyle’s family. The commander tells the family that Max will be put down. Kyle’s family adopts Max but it’s their youngest son, Justin, who has to take care of him. Justin is a moody teenager that feels neglected by his father and overshadowed by his fallen brother. However, Max is able to help Justin find to find himself but there is a threat from Kyle’s past that is dangerous and wants to harm Max.
Max is an average enjoyable movie. The dog who plays Max steals the show. His scenes with Justin are the most enjoyable parts of the movie. The actor who plays Justin is rather good. He shows a ton of emotion and anger but his screen time getting to know Max is cut short. Justin’s love interest is played by a good actress too. They have a good chemistry together and Max reacts to it their chemistry. The trio actually make the film watchable. However, despite the three actors and their performances the movie is lame.
Max should be about Justin and Max; however, this plot point gets diluted by multiple subplots, cheesy dialogue, poor acting, and unlikable characters. One of the multiple subplots in Max is that Justin illegally rips video games and sells them. His relationship with his father is non existent because the father is a complete jerk. His character would be fine for an adult film but for a family orientated film…he sucks the enjoyment every time he is on screen. The father played by Thomas Haden Church who is one of the best character actors in Hollywood. The mother has like 10 lines of dialogue and really has no story arch. The friends of Justin and the antagonists of the film do a poor job of acting. The friends especially take away from the Max and Justin story arch. The dialogue can be horrendously cheesy that will make your brain spin.
Max gets 2.5 out of 5. The studio should have focused on the Dog and the Boy.