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Josh Greenbaum
Will Ferrell, Jamie Foxx, Isla Fisher
Writing Credits:
Dan Perrault

An abandoned dog teams up with other strays to get revenge on his former owner.

Box Office:
$46 million.
Opening Weekend:
$8,247,810 on 3223 Screens.
Domestic Gross:

Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
English DVS
Spanish DTS 5.1
French DTS 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 93 min.
Price: $24.98
Release Date: 10/10/2023

• Audio Commentary with Director Josh Greenbaum and Screenwriter Dan Perrault
• “Talk Like a Dog” Featurette
• “The Ultimate Treat” Featurette
• “Poop, Booms and Shrooms” Featurette
• “Stray/I> Actor” Featurette
• “Training to Be Stray” Featurette
• “A New Best Friend” Featurette
• DVD Copy


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
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-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Strays [Blu-Ray] (2023)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (October 8, 2023)

Most movies about pets offer heart-warming affairs. With 2023’s Strays, however, we get a much raunchier experience.

Reggie the dog (voiced by Will Ferrell) adores his owner Doug (Will Forte), but Doug fails to reciprocate these feelings. Doug constantly attempts to get rid of Reggie, but the pooch always finds his way home.

One day Doug leaves Reggie in the big city, where he meets rogue canine Bug (voiced by Jamie Foxx). Though Reggie believes his situation stems from a playful game, Bug eventually gets through to him and convinces Reggie that Doug abandoned him.

Now officially a stray, this changes Reggie’s worldview. Now he becomes determined to make it back home for one reason: to bite off Doug’s penis.

I went into Strays with two primary concerns. First, I feared it would offer a lot of cruelty toward animals.

Longtime readers know how much I adore dogs. A movie that packed ugly treatment of pooches could turn into one tough for me to take.

Happily, not much of this occurs. Of course, the plot revolves around Doug’s bad behavior, but the movie doesn’t wallow in this, and we don’t find much to offend even a soft-hearted viewer like me.

My second concern related to the flick’s concept. As a raunchy comedy, I worried that we’d get little more than 93 minutes of jokes about genitals, bodily functions and excrement.

Yeah, I largely nailed that one. While Strays delves into a few other sources of attempted humor, it delights in these scatological domains to the exclusion of most else.

And this tends to turn Strays into lowest common denominator territory. It doesn’t take a lot of creativity to make jokes of the sort found here, and the movie rarely finds anything creative to do with the topics.

This results in a surprisingly unfunny experience. Oh, we get a chuckle here or there, but I can’t claim to find the belly laughs a broad comedy like this promises.

Given the cast involved, the absence of much hilarity becomes an even bigger surprise. In addition to Foxx, Ferrell and Forte, the movie boasts comedic veterans such as Isla Fisher, Randall Park, Josh Gad, Sofia Vergara, Rob Riggle, and more.

With such a stellar gang involved, Strays really should provoke more laughs than it does. Unfortunately, the incessantly cheap nature of the jokes limits their ability to make the movie click.

I also strongly dislike an aspect of the film’s finale. Though we expect all the dogs involved to end up with happy homes, one elects to remain a stray.

The film paints this as a fine and valid choice for a pooch. This sends a terrible message to viewers.

Some may see this conclusion and determine that it works in real life. People might feel free to abandon their dogs because the movie makes it look fun and fancy free.

What a crock! No dog is better off in the street, and the notion that this offers a perfectly healthy and positive life really rubs me the wrong way.

But even without this problematic finale, Strays doesn’t click. I like all the adorable pups involved, but the movie itself fails to deliver much comedy.

Footnote: a short tag scene appears about two minutes into the end credits.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B/ Bonus B-

Strays appears in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The movie offered a positive visual impression.

Overall definition seemed pleasing. Only minor softness crept into the occasional wide shot, so the majority of the movie felt accurate.

I noticed no signs of jaggies or edge enhancement, and shimmering was absent. The film lacked print flaws and seemed clean.

In terms of colors, Strays went for a teal and amber/orange tint, though not to an oppressive degree. These appeared fine within the film’s stylistic choices.

Blacks seemed dark and tight, and shadows demonstrated good clarity. This added up to a satisfying presentation.

A comedy like this wouldn’t seem to be a candidate for a whiz-bang soundtrack. As such, the DTS-HD MA 5.1 audio of Strays fell into expected realms.

Usually the track remained oriented toward ambience, so don’t expect lots of sizzle from the mix. The prevalence of shots on streets and other outdoor locations added reasonable involvement, though.

A few more action-oriented segments also brought out some positive movement and engagement. In particular, a bit with fireworks from the canine perspective delivered a dynamic experience. Throw in a bit of directional dialogue and this turned into a reasonably solid soundscape.

Audio quality satisfied. Music was full and rich, while effects showed nice clarity and accuracy.

Speech appeared concise and crisp. Nothing here soared, but it all seemed fine for the project.

As we move to extras, we open with an audio commentary from director Josh Greenbaum and screenwriter Dan Perrault. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific look at story and characters, cast and performances, working with animals, various effects, music, editing, and connected domains.

When they launch their chat, Greenbaum and Perrault make a tongue in cheek promise to deliver the greatest commentary ever. They fail, of course, but they nonetheless give us a pretty good discussion.

They spend a lot of time on the animal actors, and that turns into an enlightening topic. Given that Strays devotes the vast majority of its running time to canine characters – and largely avoids CG versions – we get useful notes about those challenges. Throw in a good array of other areas and we find an informative commentary.

Six featurettes follow, and Talk Like a Dog goes for seven minutes, 10 seconds. It provides info from Greenbaum, Perrault, producers Phil Lord, Erik Feig, Louis Leterrier, Aditya Sood, and Christopher Miller, and actors Will Ferrell, Randall Park, and Isla Fisher.

“Talk” looks at cast, characters and performances. I like the glimpses of the voice actors at work in the recording studio, but the comments tend toward fluff.

The Ultimate Treat runs six minutes, 34 seconds. It features Perrault, Park, Ferrell, Fisher, Leterrier, Feig, Lord, Miller, and Greenbaum.

“Treat” examines story/characters, Greenbaum’s approach to the material, casting and performances, and working with animals. This becomes a mix of decent insights along with happy talk.

Next comes Poop, Booms and Shrooms. It spans six minutes, 41 seconds and brings comments from Greenbaum, Ferrell, Park, Leterrier, Forte, Lord, Miller, Perrault, property master Sean Mannion, and actor Brett Gelman.

Here we look at some scene specifics, with an emphasis on a few of the movie’s more disgusting parts. It becomes a good take on the topics.

Stray Actor lasts five minutes, 57 seconds. It gives us notes from Forte, Greenbaum, Park, Lord, Miller, Ferrell, Leterrier, Sood, Feig, Fisher, and Perrault.

“Actor” discusses Forte and his performance. Outside of some comedy when the others pretend Forte is a terrible person, the remarks add little, but we get some useful shots from the set.

After this, we find Training to Be Stray. It fills five minutes, 30 seconds with statements from Greenbaum, Forte, head animal trainer Mark Forbes and trainers Raymond W. Beal, Kristy Gerosky, Mathilde DdeCagny, April Mackin and Thomas Gunderson.

As expected, we learn about the animal actors and their work on the set. We find an enjoyable view of these areas.

A New Best Friend occupies three minutes, 36 seconds. It offers info from Leterrier, Gelman, Forte, Ferrell, and Greenbaum.

We get a look at animal actors again, with an emphasis on the use of rescues. This mixes movie notes with an ad to get dogs homes – and I approve of the latter.

A second disc delivers a DVD copy of Strays. It includes the same extras as the Blu-ray.

With a stellar cast of comedic talents, Strays should provide a consistent laughfest. Instead, it suffers from too many cheap, tacky gags and too little inspiration. The Blu-ray provides solid picture and audio as well as a decent mix of bonus materials. While not a terrible film, Strays nonetheless fails to deliver much entertainment value.

Viewer Film Ratings: 1.5 Stars Number of Votes: 2
0 3:
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