References to hard drug-taking, scenes of underground dog fighting, jokes about sexual assault and suicide. No this isn’t a racy adult comedy or a hard-hitting drama, this is, in fact, some of the horribly misguided material that makes an appearance in The Queen’s Corgi. Billed as a film about the loveable royal pooch’s quest to become Her Majesty’s “Top Dog”, this film is a grotesque, bland, questionable and in fact borderline offensive assault on the eyes, that fails to emerge with a single redeeming quality.
The opening set-piece to this film features the US President (yes, that one) arriving in the UK for a state visit, with his robotic wife and dog in tow. Of course, there is a “joke” made along the lines of “which one is the dog” and that isn’t even scratching the surface of this god-awful film’s attempts at humour. No, where the film really kicks in is with the President encouraging his dog to “grab some puppy” (I wish I was joking) and what follows is an incredibly uncomfortable collection of scenes in which the President’s dog makes aggressive sexual passes at Rex, the titular dog of the title. Honestly, I couldn’t believe what I was watching, and in fact, misguided doesn’t even cover it. When one of the other royal canine’s joyfully sings “here comes the bride, consider suicide” about Rex’s upcoming forced marriage to the President’s pooch, I knew that this film was never going to redeem itself.
It goes from bad to worse from there, and when Rex finds himself at the dog pound, we’re treated to offensive stereotypes, references to a drug sniffer dog taking his duties a bit too far, and a female dog singing a sultry song and dance number whilst pole-dancing for the group of mostly male onlookers. Let’s just ignore the fact we’re looking at cute animated pooches for a second here and think about what we have just read; I have absolutely no idea how this film managed to get greenlit, and frankly I wish it hadn’t. This is a film which references Fight Club and just when you think it might be a cute aside, you realise that it absolutely isn’t and then suddenly you’re in a scene involving a vicious underground dog fight. This is in a kid’s movie!
A film which relies so heavily on pop culture references has to have something pretty special going for it to even have a hope of longevity, and this film not only doesn’t have that, but its references already feel out of date. Perhaps this could be forgiven if the characters were fun to watch or easy to root for, but the main corgi protagonist is, in fact, an insufferable dickhead, making it near impossible to feel anything for his plight to find his way back to the palace. Perhaps the quality of the animation could pull back something here, but no. The animation isn’t bad per se, it is just uninspired, bland and uninteresting, and in a world where Toy Story 4’s incredible photo-realistic animation exists, the inadequacies of this film show even more. I attempted to clutch all of the bloody straws for this film, but there is nothing, absolutely nothing good about it.
I thought that I would love to see a film in which Donald Trump gets bitten on the genitals by a dog, but I was wrong, and there is nothing that can save this film from being the unmitigated disaster that it is from beginning to end. My overriding thought whilst watching this film (apart from “why me?!”), was just who on earth is this film for? The “jokes” and references are terribly misguided and far too adult to have a place in a kids movie, and the story itself is simplistic, bland, and unimaginative. The film is for no one, and quite frankly, no one should have to watch this film.
Rating: 0 stars
Directed by: Vincent Kesteloot, Ben Stassen
Written by: Rob Sprackling, Johnny Smith
Cast: Rusty Shackleford, Jo Wyatt, Leo Barakat, Mari Devon, Dino Andrade