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Case Number 02187: Small Claims Court

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K-9: P.I.

Universal // 2002 // 95 Minutes // Rated PG-13
Reviewed by Judge Bill Gibron (Retired) // September 13th, 2002

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All Rise...

The Charge

They're back to clean up the streets…one mess at a time.

The Case

On the eve of their retirement from the force, partners Mike Dooley and Jerry Lee the dog stumble across a robbery at a computer company. During the chase, the thieves drop a valuable microchip and Jerry Lee, thinking it's a newborn kitten, gobbles it up. Poor beast gets blocked up something fierce as a result of this high-tech tender vittle. Because they were on the scene at the time of the heist, they become suspects, and Dooley's police pension is frozen. So he decides to breed Jerry Lee for some quick cash to start a private investigation business. After a successful night with a certified bitch in heat, Dooley gets paid and Jerry Lee gets "morning after" regrets. A trip to the vet and a concoction of prunes, castor oil, cabbage, and beans flushes Jerry Lee out nicely, and Dooley does a little stool fishing to find the mangy microprocessor. When a client comes along looking for her lost fiancé, Dooley and dog are back in business. Little do they know that all roads lead back to the hardware heist, and in a final confrontation with the bad guys, they must rely on their police skills, and each other, to save the day.

While not a scientific or statistical certainty, it is fairly safe to postulate that approximately 33% of K-9: P.I. revolves around canine flatulence, doggy diarrhea, and extended scenes of our four legged friends ripping the crackers. Never before has a semi-major motion picture focused almost exclusively on the lower GI of either man or animal. Sure, dogs are known for passing wind every now and then, but Jerry Lee is apparently auditioning to be La Petomane. Another major biological theme for this cinematic canis horriblis is animal husbandry, since pimpin' his pup is Belushi's brainstorm for securing his financial future. So, as Billy Preston's "Nothing from Nothing" (?) blares in the background, our gigolo German Sheppard licks his moneymaker for the parade of possible poochie paramours offered up, montage style, like so many pork cutlets. Little do these bi-atches know that unless you are a poodle, Jerry Lee has performance anxiety. Fortunately, a quick trip to Fido's of Hollywood and voila! Instant cherche la femme! All farting and fornicating aside, K-9: P.I. is a mildly entertaining mere piffle of a film that doesn't try very hard, and succeeds on telling a coherent, albeit inconsequential story. There is no in-depth characterization or messy subplots to get in the way from the target oriented straightforward narrative. This is an unassuming little film that tells its tale, entertains as much as it possibly can, and then gets out of the way.

This DVD presentation by Universal is fascinating. Though made for the direct-to-video market (unless somewhere along the line the spectacular Mega-plex premiere of this movie was missed), the DVD has a good looking, widescreen anamorphic picture. The available soundtracks are high end, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround or DTS. Both are very good, especially during the (by-the-book) abandoned factory chase scenes. Along with a trailer and some rather odd filmographies (characters with two scenes get a write up) there is a "making of" featurette that actually adds some insight into the reasons behind and the how-tos of the production. What makes this so intriguing is that, as a film, K-9: P.I. is a marginal title. Yet it gets a better treatment on DVD here than a lot of prestige films. Either it was cheap to put this disc and its supplements together, or Universal has something for poop and poot jokes. Whatever the case, K-9: P.I. is not going to sweep the Screen Actors Guild Awards, but it is also not likely to bore young children or the elderly. The majority of the population, however, may feel like referring to this gassy goof as K-9…PU!

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Scales of Justice

Judgment: 75

Perp Profile

Studio: Universal
Video Formats:
• 1.78:1 Anamorphic
Audio Formats:
• DTS 5.1 Surround (English)
• Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English)
• English
• Spanish
Running Time: 95 Minutes
Release Year: 2002
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13
• Comedy

Distinguishing Marks

• Trailer
• Cast Biography
• Spotlight on Location: The Making of K-9: P.I.


• IMDb

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