Reviewed by Arno Mikli
Rating: 5.5 Beans
his is a film that this reviewer did want to like, as he had a dog by that name who died several years ago. Alas, this was not to be. So what caused him to return this erstwhile production to the video store in a very disappointed state of mind?
The answer lies in the grave difficulty that the scriptwriters seem to have had in making up their minds as to whether Bingo was supposed to be treated as a dog or a human being. So they did tried doing both. It was this single decision resulted in this film becoming such a clinker, as a summary of the film's plotline will show.
It deals with a boy who wants to keep a dog he has just met (Bingo, of course), but whose father doesn't. They then commence to go off on a holiday with the rest of the family. Bingo does his best to join them. After all, he had just been thrown out by his original owners at a nearby circus, and is no hurry to undergo another rejection.
But he runs into difficulties and numerous adventures on the way. He gets locked up in , but escapes from, a sleazy restaurant where they quite literally serve hot dogs. He gets arrested and tried on a court of law. The dialogue in the court scene has to be seen to be believed. This reviewer can only speculate as to how many retakes and reheasals it took before the actors concerned could say their lines with straight faces. He goes and seduces a lady dog (well , the word bitch cannot be used here, can it?), and celebrates their deep and meaningful relationship in her kennel with some champagne. At least the audience doesn't get to see what they do inside.There are other such adventures as well, but these will suffice by way of examples.
The paths of Bingo and the family finally comes together through a couple of robbers whose collective path Bingo had been crossing several times throughout his travels. Their attempted armed robbery is foiled with Daddy's help, but Bingo gets wounded.
Then follows a classical moment of bad movies. Bingo is in hospital (naturally, in this film!) lying doggo on his back in bed.. He is surrounded by the entire cast of the film - doggy restaurant owners, the trial lawyers and judge, Bingo's original circus owners, even the robbers. The boy is standing nearby. As Daddy enters the very large hospital room (just what kind of medical insurance is Bingo on, anyway?) the boy looks at Daddy and asks "Daddy, can I PLEASE keep him?" Guess what Daddy's answer is.... The video store can certainly keep this dog of a film. Their attempt at humour was a dismal failure - and because it was, so was the film.