Good boi can’t hold back his excitement.

Good boi can’t hold back his excitement.

Good boi can’t hold back his excitement.

The second season of Hulu’s original monthly horror film series “Into the Dark” was more funny than scary, which was usually a good thing. “A Nasty Piece of Work,” “Crawlers,” and “Pooka Lives!” won’t keep anyone up late. Maybe the show’s creators realised that in 2020, people needed to laugh more than they needed to be scared. Last but not least, the outside world is scary enough.

Enter “Good Boy,” a movie that looks like an independent Sundance rom-com. If you didn’t see the Blumhouse logo at the beginning, the score, visuals, and dialogue would make you think it was a very different movie than it is. Maggie, who is played by Judy Greer, is a writer for a Reseda newspaper. Maggie finds it hard to find happiness in her life. The dating scene is terrible, and her editor, Don (Steve Guttenberg), makes her a freelancer while he bothers her landlord, Bea (Maria Conchita Alonso). She is trying to get money for egg collection so that she can have children even though she doesn’t have a boyfriend. Don tells Maggie as he walks her out the door that she should get an emotional support dog. This makes our hero go to a shelter and adopt a cute mutt named Reuben. The story of a woman who gets over her fear of dogs because she loves a rescue dog seems to be a very touching one.

But, in the end, this is a scary movie. Also, don’t all “Into the Dark” movies have something to do with a holiday? Surprisingly, this one is about Pet Appreciation Week, because Maggie learns to love her strange little dog after he starts making her life easier. After she goes out with a real jerk, he dies on the sidewalk. Maggie’s life gets scarier and scarier, and when she writes about the bad things that happen because of her new best friend, she even gets some attention. We still don’t know a lot about Reuben’s situation. Reuben looks as cute as ever after a scary moment, Maggie leaving the room, and some blood spurts. How could a little puppy cause so much trouble? Maggie takes care of everything by herself? Has she lost her mind?

As you might expect, it’s hard for director Tyler MacIntyre to keep the tone of a movie that is equal parts “Private Life” and “Cujo.” Judy Greer gives it her all, but “Good Boy” has been made with a much worse actress in the lead role. But the setup falls apart right when the tension should be building. At some point, it turns into a romantic comedy with a charming cop who is only there to solve problems. Worse, it doesn’t build up tension for the last act. Instead, it just kind of drifts into it and then has trouble finding the right tone for the last few minutes. This scary, bloody movie with a lot of gore doesn’t have any real scares.

In our stressed-out world, the story of a support dog that helps by getting rid of sources of stress seems especially relevant. But a movie has to be more than just its premise. “Good Boy” struggles to make the idea of a shaggy dog into a movie that is worth seeing.


Sophia Amelia is the New York Times Bestselling Author. Writing stories to inspire young minds. Celebrating the power of words & imagination through my books. Join me on my journey to creating stories that will capture your imagination and captivate your heart.

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