FRIDAY, AUGUST 10, 2018 -- The last film Ken Marino directed was "How To be A Latin Lover" that had only one redeeming asset... namely Raquel Welch; it was good seeing the legendary sex symbol still putting it out there even in her late 70's. The film itself, however, was awful.


In his latest film, Marino brings actor Rob Corddry over from the last film along with a string of B-list actors who are desperate for work, including the lovely Eva Longoria. It's desperate because there has already been a dog movie this year, "Show Dogs" in May, a light comedy about a gruff police dog in a dog show. It managed $17 million in 70-days of release for Open Road Pictures. Eh. Even earlier was Wes Anderson's "Isle of Dogs" though that was a claymation film...still a dog flick.


I mention this because I think there is an unwritten rule in Hollywood that there not be more than one dog movie per year. Now three? What's more, movie audiences still haven't gotten over the controversy with last years "A Dog's Purpose".

Marino's film is about as generic as they get. Several people (most with dogs of course) go about their daily lives. Elizabeth (Nina Dobrev) is a morning talk show hostess who catches her beau cheating, she channels her anger through her dog Sam at a local dog psychologist. Grace and her husband (Eva Longoria and Rob Corddry) have just adopted a little girl named Amelia (Elizabeth Phoenix Caro) who is quite reserved. An expecting mom and her husband (Jessica St Clair and David Wain) can't handle their dog and dump him off on her ne'er-do-well brother Dax (Adam Pally).


Young coffee barista Tara (Vanessa Hudgens) finds a small pooch while pining for a customer. An old retired professor (Ron Cephas Jones) loses his pug when the pug runs away after being startled by the local pizza delivery boy Tyler (Finn Wolfhard).


All these lives will play out separately before they miraculously come together just like a Garry Marshall movie ("Mothers Day", "New Year's Eve", "Valentine's Day") and just like those films each character will get a new meaning for life...and love...because of a dog. Could be sweet, definitely simple. Too simple.


The performances by these B-list actors are cardboard at best, making the sappy cinematic cliches even that more groan-worthy. The editing is choppy with horrible cuts between dogs and their stand ins (especially the pug). There isn't one scene that might yank an "Aaawww" response from the audience. Oh well.


The good news for the talent is this film probably won't be held against them, most are going too much further in their careers anyway.


"Dog Days" can only appeal to extremely bored, dog lovers. Anyone else will run for the exits once all the B-list actors open their mouths. Director Ken Marino must have one helluva sales pitch!   -- GRADE C- --   GEOFF BURTON