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Director Ken Marino’s new movie “Dog Days” strings together 12 characters and four dogs in a hilarious comedy with a powerful message. “Dog Days” is an emotional film meant to not just make you laugh, but to also shed a tear and shout a few “aww’s”.

The characters of the film are interconnected by their lovable canine counterparts. The cast is able to find common ground through their pets, and it helps them to grow and flourish in ways they never expected. Dogs have always had a unique ability to connect us to others and ourselves, and that theme is really explored in the film. Life is tricky for all of the characters, but things are made easier (and sometimes a bit messy) by the canines they care for.

For example, there is an uptight news anchor Elizabeth (Nina Dobrev) that is having difficulty warming up to her new network co-host, Jimmy (Tone Bell). When their two pups bond, the two are able to begin conversations themselves and flourish a friendship. In what is the most heartwarming subplot, Tyler (Finn Wolfhard) steps up and helps a lonely, old man (Ron Cephas Jones) when he loses his beloved pug Mabel. The dog winds up with the Chapman family (Eva Longoria and Rob Corddry), who teaches them how to grow as a family with their new adopted daughter Amelia (Elizabeth Phoenix Caro). The pup provides the foundation for new relationships to form and flourish.

These, along with several other whimsical tales, all tie together to deliver a touching movie that pulls at our heart strings. While we watch the characters uncover some valuable life lessons, we quickly see how we can apply these to our own lives. The stories remind us that with a little common ground, we can build new relationships with others around us despite a wide-range of differences. No matter what type of relationship, weather it be with our family, co-worker, a romantic partner or a neighbor, there is always a way to learn how to work together and be amicable.

They are called a man’s best friend for a reason! Catch “Dog Days” in theaters now.

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