How to Kill Your Neighbor's Dog (2000)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  5 March 2003 (France)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 3,053 users   Metascore: 40/100
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Shy, chain-smoking, insomniac Peter McGowan is an L.A. playwright with a string of hits that preceded his current ten years of failed productions. His mother-in-law is sinking into senility... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter McGowen
Melanie McGowen (as Robin Wright Penn)
False Peter
Brian Sellars
Trina Walsh
Derek Kellock ...
Amy's Father
Debra Salhany


Shy, chain-smoking, insomniac Peter McGowan is an L.A. playwright with a string of hits that preceded his current ten years of failed productions. His mother-in-law is sinking into senility, a stranger is meandering the neighborhood claiming to be him, neighbors have a new dog that barks all night; his wife wants to have a child, and he does not: he's become impotent. He's working on a new play when a single mom moves in next door with her 8-year-old daughter. His wife immediately invites the girl into the McGowan household. Will this child stir Peter's paternal feelings? Will she also help him get his dialogue right? And what of his doppelganger and the neighbor's dog? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


One man's pet is another man's peeve.


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

5 March 2003 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Comment tuer le chien de son voisin  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$7,300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$18,956 (USA) (22 February 2002)


$48,564 (USA) (19 April 2002)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Outside of festivals, the film did not receive a major theatrical release and wound up going directly to cable. See more »


[first lines]
Handler: Mr. McGowen, I think we're ready. This way, please.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits roll, there is a short break showing the scene portraying the dog after it had been shot. The director shouts "cut," and the dog gets off the ground and barks. See more »


References Jeopardy! (1984) See more »


A Groovy Kind of Love
(end title)
Music by Toni Wine
Lyrics by Carole Bayer Sager
Performed by Petula Clark (uncredited)
Courtesy of GNP Crescendo Records
By Arrangement with Ocean Park Music Group
See more »

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User Reviews

Personality disorder comedy
19 April 2000 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

The film is about a writer struggling with his block, his wife struggling to have children and the sweet girl next door who brings life to the writer and his wife. The film is not necessarily blockbuster quality and will do better on video rentals and sales. I saw a rough cut, so I cannot comment on the sound or editing. There are funny moments, and you will love the relationship between Kenneth Brannagh's character and the little girl. Can't give away any more!

7 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Anybody else out there a fan of How to Kill...? wanbaclone
Great to see a kind wife for a change!!! sietz
What about dogs? eugenep13
Mad Dogs and Englishmen the_den-1
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Twist at the end!?? sietz
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