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How to Kill Your Neighbor's Dog (2000)

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A sarcastic playwright in LA gets new neighbors - single mom and 8 y.o. girl. His wife wants kids and babysits the girl. He doesn't want kids yet plays with her to find out how children talk - for his play. Paternal instincts?

Director:

Michael Kalesniko
6 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kenneth Branagh ... Peter McGowen
Robin Wright ... Melanie McGowen (as Robin Wright Penn)
Suzi Hofrichter ... Amy Walsh
Lynn Redgrave ... Edna
Jared Harris ... False Peter
Peter Riegert ... Larry
David Krumholtz ... Brian Sellars
Johnathon Schaech ... Adam
Kaitlin Hopkins ... Victoria
Suzy Joachim ... Allana
Brett Rickaby ... Janitor
Lucinda Jenney ... Trina Walsh
Derek Kellock Derek Kellock ... Amy's Father
Stacy Hogue ... Babysitter
Peri Gilpin ... Debra Salhany
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Storyline

Shy, chain-smoking, insomniac Peter McGowan is a Los Angeles 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 mother moves in next door with her eight-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 <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

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

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 March 2003 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Como Matar o Cão do Vizinho See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,956, 24 February 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$48,564, 21 April 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

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

Quotes

[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 »

Connections

Referenced in Family Guy: Dog Gone (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Four Seasons - Spring - 1st Movement
Written by Antonio Vivaldi
Courtesy of FirstCom Music/Chappel Music Library
See more »

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User Reviews

We have all faced some of the same problems.
29 October 2001 | by HapRaySee all my reviews

I really had little idea as to what this was going to be, but being a fan of Kenneth Branagh's work, and hearing that is was a bit comedic, I gave it a shot. From the very first minutes of the movie, you know that you are in for "something special". As always, his timing when delivering a humorous line and his adroit methods of playing off a co-star, are in full force here. Robin Wright does an excellent job as his usually ignored wife, and the remainder of the cast, as you will see, was well directed.

The "real" standout in this film is the dialogue. The writing is superb...so much so, that I am going to watch it again, to pick up the lines I missed while I was either laughing or savoring an exquisite film moment.

He is totally in charge of the role given him here and really does hate the neighbor's dog ( as you would too), but the dog is only a segment of what is a bigger picture of a man fighting his personal torments, and all the while, doing it with a smile.

Why there wasn't more publicity about this film is beyond me. If it is to become a "cult" classic, then so be it, but it will definitely become some kind of classic. I have written other comments on this site for movies, and consider myself an "excellent" judge of what entertains and what does not, no matter who is in it, and I heartily recommend that you get a glass of your favorite whatever, and sit back and watch a great movie unfold. I would suggest that you are older than thirty to REALLY have fun with this vehicle.

Oh yes, let the credits role after the movie ends....in a few moments there is a scene that you WILL need to see. It's just one...but it's important. Get the popcorn and turn it on. You can thank me later.


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