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Snow Dogs Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 2.0

    out of 100

    Generally unfavorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 25

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    As distressed as a comedy can be without qualifying as a snow emergency.

    Read Full Review

  • 38

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    The best actor in Snow Dogs is a glowering Siberian husky named Demon. In fact, all the dogs in the movie do a better job than their human counterparts.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    Snow Dogs isn't subtle, to say the least, but it's a serviceable city-slicker-in-the-frozen-sticks comedy for kids and undemanding adults.

  • See all Snow Dogs reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 8+

Comic action, appealing hero, splendid dogs; some scares.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Snow Dogs is a farcical "fish-out-of-water" story that finds its hero, a Miami dentist, on an Alaskan adventure filled with exuberant racing dogs, an array of eccentric characters, and extensive amounts of cartoon jeopardy and pratfalls. Kids who watch this movie should be comfortable with the distinction between real and cartoonish danger, as some suspenseful scenes (i.e., a possibly tragic fall from a mountain road, then suspended in mid-air) may be too intense for young or sensitive viewers. The hero is confronted by an angry bear and has numerous face-offs with Demon, who may or may not be a ferocious dog. In addition there are countless falls, crashes, and scenes in which he is dragged behind a sled. A sweet love story finds makes its way through this comic mayhem. And, early in the story, it's revealed that, unbeknownst to him, the hero is an adopted child; fallout from this fact continues throughout the film. There is occasionally some mildly coarse humor (i.e., a dog pees on a tree), and product placement is profuse.

  • Families can talk about the term "fish-out-of-water." Find out what it means. Why do you think "fish-out-of-water" stories and movies are so appealing? Think of some other movies you've liked that use this concept.
  • At what age do you think you were able to tell the difference between real violence and cartoon violence? Use the example of Ted and Thunder Jack going over the cliff and talk about why you knew or suspected that they were going to survive.
  • All stories need conflict or discord. Since there are no true villains in this movie, what provides the conflict?

The good stuff
  • educationalvalue true1

    Educational value: Set in Alaska, the movie shows natural beauty and the unique identity of the environment and people.

  • message true1

    Messages: Encourages being open to new and different ideas, cultures, and people. Reinforces benefit of strong family ties. Values honesty, follow-through, and open-mindedness.

  • rolemodels true3

    Role models: Hero is a sunny character who prides himself on his professionalism, honesty, and devotion to his family. While he learns a great deal from his adventures, his humanness and optimism remain intact. Very diverse cast of characters.

What to watch for
  • violence false4

    Violence and scariness: Extensive slapstick cartoon action, coupled with some moments of real suspense. Leading character has numerous encounters with a snarling, seemingly-ferocious dog and must escape from an angry bear. Many scenes show him in jeopardy, most of it obvious and comic. He slips, skids, falls, gets lost, is dragged over snow and ice, is socked in the face, nearly falls to his death when his sled goes over the side of a mountain, finds himself trapped on a frozen lake with breaking ice, is chased and bitten (on padded pants) by a dog, crashes through a window, and has a couple of close calls in an airplane. A block of frozen Gatorade is "poured" on a man, who is knocked out.

  • sex false1

    Sexy stuff: Women on a beach wear bikinis. Brief mild sexual innuendo. Leading characters fall in love and kiss a few times.

  • language false1

    Language: Hero yells at his dogs, vehemently tells them to "shut up." A dog pees on a tree.

  • consumerism false4

    Consumerism: Visual and/or spoken references to many products, including: Crest Toothpaste, Wild Turkey, North Face, Sharper Image, Kawasaki, Ogilvie Flour, TRM Copy Centers, Westjet Air, and others.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false1

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Characters are seen consuming alcoholic beverages in a bar. A character takes a drink from a flask.