A Dog’s Breakfast

Overview
In this black comedy, Hollywood makeup artist Marilyn (Kate Hewlett) is thrilled when she gets engaged to TV star Ryan (Paul McGillion), but the situation goes to the dogs when her overprotective brother Patrick (David Hewlett) learns that Marilyn’s fiancé is plotting her murder. Things get out of hand when Patrick tries to save his little sister from her killer hubby-to-be, pushing the siblings’ tight-knit family to the brink of insanity.

Plot Rating: 5/5
The summary, for once, does a pretty good job of getting you an idea as to what’s going on. This is not a slapstick comedy, so don’t worry. It has, on more than one occasion, been referred to as “Monty Python-esque”, and it seems to earn that. Go into the movie expecting dark humor more in line with a British comedy than an American one. The story is written very clearly in a three-act structure, and it comes off almost as though you were watching a very good stage play.

I don’t want to say too much about the plot here. Because of the three-act structure being so apparent summarizing any part gives away too much of the plot. Just know it’s a simple comedy about a man who is trying to save his sister from a charming would-be murderer and then things begin to go mysteriously wrong as Patrick begins to believe he is haunted (either in a real sense or just in his mind) by what he plans to do and what he has done.

A now-desperate Patrick (holding Mars) tries to think of how to kill Ryan and protect Marilyn

Acting Score 6/5
The chemistry is absolutely phenomenal, which is no surprise. Director David Hewlett stars as Patrick with his real-life little sister Katie as Marilyn. Playing Marilyn’s scheming fiance Ryan is Paul McGillion, one of David Hewlett’s close friends and co-stars from “Stargate Atlantis”. Also making minor guest roles are Christopher Judge (as himself) and Rachel Luttrell, who held main roles in “Stargate SG-1” and “Stargate Atlantis” respectfully, both working opposite Hewlett. Even Mars (Patrick’s dog) is played by David Hewlett’s own dog of the same name.

The cast is very much seasoned. The least experienced actor being Katie Hewlett. As Patrick’s sister though she brings in her familiarity with David and delivers a brilliant performance. She too has appeared on “Stargate Atlantis” twice and has great chemistry with Patrick.

As you can tell from the close ties in the cast it isn’t a very serious movie. It makes fun of “Stargate SG-1” and “Stargate Atlantis” and keeps a light tone throughout. The acting is A+, even if you are unfamiliar with the two shows previously mentioned you will miss nothing.

Each time Patrick (right) tries to murder Ryan it just gets brushed off as a minor accident

Age Rating: 12+
This is a very light movie. Adults will especially love it, but kids will get a kick out of it too. Yes, it is about the murder of a scheming man, but nothing is overdone and there is no real adult content at any significant level. The movie officially is “NR” (not rated) but I’d give it a low PG-13 or a high PG at the most.

Fun Trivia
Paul McGillion and Rachel Lattrell are co-stars of sci-fy’s “Stargate Atlantis” along with Director/Writer/Star David Hewlett. Christopher Judge was a star of “Stargate SG-1” in which Hewlett had a recurring role (Atlantis is a spin-off of SG-1, Hewlett plays the same character in both).

David Hewlett has said previously that he is working on a sequel, but no new info on this has come out in over two years.

David and Katie Hewlett always appear together as siblings. In this movie they are Patrick and Marilyn and in Stargate Atlantis they were Rodney and Jeannie McKay.

Rachel Luttrell (Center) and Paul McGillian (right) play highly exaggerated versions of their "Stargate" characters in "Starcrossed"

The fake show that Katie and Ryan met working on is called “Starcrossed”, named after an episode of “Andromeda” on which Stargate SG-1 actor (and David Hewlett’s friend) Michael Shanks met his future wife, actress Lexa Doig. David Hewlett and Christopher Judge also had guest roles on that show.

The sets for “Starcrossed” are sets from “Stargate SG-1” and “Stargate Atlantis”. David Hewlett said in an interview much of “A Dog’s Breakfast” was made by calling in favors from friends and borrowing the “Stargate” sets a few times.

David Hewlett got the dog Mars for this movie. By the end of the movie he’d fallen for him and ended up adopting Mars outright.

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