Many overlooked Best in Show as a low-budgeted dog show comedy. Well, it is a low-budgeted dog show comedy, but it is an extremely funny one. I haven't laughed this loud in a long time.
Filmed in mockumentary style, the film follows several different dog owners as they travel to and compete in the Mayflower Annual Dog Show. Sometimes, the approach is in an interview and at other times the story is showed in typical observer fashion. Either way, the result is a lot of comedy.
All of the dog owners are comically stupid in one way or another. Best in Show sort of makes fun of people who are so obsessed with their dogs, but at the same time isn't harsh enough to persuade those who are like that from watching. If you are an avid dog lover, you can still watch this movie and have a good time (I saw my mother depicted in several elements of the various dog people). One dog owner is a bumbling fish store owner, who sounds a lot like Boomhauer from "King of the Hill." Another is a couple played by Catherine O'Hara and Eugene Levy. Levy, who was fabulous in American Pie, is even funnier here, playing the same sort of nervous guy, only this time he has two left feet. Literally. There is another couple who both have braces and get in constant fights over their dog, especially when one of them can't find their dog's chew toy. There's also a gay couple that put up their own decorations in the hotel room, and many more.
Furthermore, the funniest and most idiotic character in the whole movie is the dog show host played by Fred Willard, who knows nothing about dog shows so he keeps asking dumb questions to his co-host, as well as making frequent unnecessary relationships to other various things.
The dialogue is great, as are the characters. Christopher Guest, who wrote and directed this film, knew exactly how to make Best in Show how he wanted it, and the result is terrific. The comedy does not let up and thankfully, there is no real moral purpose behind the film, so it does not slow down for dramatics, like most do.
The reason this review is so short is because I have nothing to complain about. Best in Show is nearly flawless in its presentation, and the comedy does not let up from beginning to end. Anyone who even remotely likes dogs, or who just wants to laugh, will get a kick out of Best in Show, because it is one of the best comedies of 2000.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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