User Reviews (15)

Add a Review

  • Warning: Spoilers
    This movie is based on puppy-mill breeder Dan Christensen. It is financially backed by "Protect the Harvest", a front group for dog- fighters, dog-breeders, cock-fighters, which is vehemently opposed to any animal cruelty legislation or humane restrictions on the use of animals.

    The breeder whose "story" is being shown in this story is far from being a victim, and the movie is filled with lies and distortions of the facts. But, breeder Dan Christensen claims that "It's 95 percent accurate; I mean I couldn't have hardly told them any better. It was really done professionally".

    That should tell you a lot about this movie, which most certainly is not 95% accurate at all -- it's complete fiction created as propaganda for breeders to smear animal rights activists and anyone who truly cares about animals beyond profiting from them.

    There was no "Sara Gold, rising star of some animal rights organization", in fact, there was no college intern who "went undercover" to expose his puppy mill at all. That means that a major chunk of the movie is false, right off the bat. Nobody snuck around the property placing hidden cameras and taking undercover surveillance or lying about their motives. No sneaky animal rights activists. Nobody had a secret agenda to frame "Daniel Holloway" (real-life Dan Christensen), his arrest and subsequent forfeiture of his puppy mill dogs did not result from undercover surveillance of him killing a dog to defend his granddaughter, and there was no photo/footage "manipulated" to frame him... because there was no intern and the event never happened.

    In fact, there was no conspiracy against him, no undercover intern, and no manipulated footage. In addition to all those fabricated scenes, there was no secretly taped recordings of the animal rescue organization admitting to purposefully conspiring or tampering with evidence, and a male animal rights volunteer did not admit to photoshopping the granddaughter out of the images -- because the people didn't exist, so it couldn't happen.

    About the only thing that was factual about the entire film is that the breeder was accused of being a puppy mill that committed abuse and neglect against 173 animals, and that they were removed from his property. Beyond that, the film has no basis in the truth.

    What isn't mentioned in the film is that the breeder had been reported numerous times for suspicion of cruelty, neglect and violations of breeding ordinances. That he had previously been told to clean up his facility, and had agreed to. That he was operating illegally without the proper state licensing. That he was arrested for the misdemeanor of operating a business without a sales tax license, to which he pleaded guilty. He was eventually charged with 173 counts of animal cruelty.

    In addition to the breeder himself admitting that law enforcement found a dog skeleton and dog head on Christensen's property on September 2, 2009, the court affidavits stated that "pictures of the kennels contained deplorable conditions: "dogs, debris, and water dishes containing discolored and dirty water; surrounded by outdoor chain- link kennels with overgrown vegetation and in some instances large amounts of dog feces; indoor kennels boarded up where windows had once been but contained holes through which dogs could pass from the interior of the building to the kennels, which were ragged and dangerous to the dogs. Additionally, another photo showed a dog skeleton outside one of the buildings. The dogs were in poor health, and suffered from poor coats, malnutrition, intestinal parasites and Parvo. Veterinarian documentation of each seized animal detailed their poor health.

    Conveniently, none of this is shown in the movie.

    The breeder was not found innocent of animal abuse and neglect. "The charges against Christensen were dismissed after the evidence supporting the state's case was suppressed. Suppression of evidence does not demonstrate Christensen's innocence of the underlying charges. Rather, it is a technical determination that the proper procedures for acquiring a warrant were circumvented. In short, because the proper procedure for a warrant was not obtained, the court allowed the breeder to request the evidence the prosecution had be suppressed, meaning no charges could be brought.

    The breeder did not get his get his dogs back the way the movie shows. And, no animal rights activist "saw the error of her ways" and ended up helping him. In fact, he ended up selling the dogs and puppies that he got back for $100 each, all the while whining about how he should have charged $350 each. The breeder attempted to sue the HSUS, the animal rescue charity, the prosecutor and pretty much anyone else he could think of, claiming some massive conspiracy, and he was not successful. Probably because he can't seem to tell the truth.

    Protect the Harvest, the backer of this film, was established by Forrest Lucas of Lucas Oil. He has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to bankroll the opposition to Proposition B in Missouri, which voters approved to set common-sense standards for the care of dogs in large-scale commercial breeding operations, spent more than a quarter-million dollars opposing Measure 5 in North Dakota, which sought to establish felony-level penalties for malicious cruelty to dogs, cats and horses, lobbied against a local ordinance in Harrison County, Indiana, to promote the spaying and neutering of pets and help reduce pet overpopulation, and fought against providing adequate shelter for dogs and protect them from the elements in Crawford County, Indiana.

    In short, everything about this movie is a lie, and everyone involved in its' production is involved with the promotion of and defense of cruelty to animals. Shame on them.
  • When I first heard about this film, I thought it might be a feel good story related to animal welfare. It claims to be based on a true story and I thought it might add to my education as an animal welfare advocate. It did not. I consider myself fairly well versed in subjects related to animal welfare and regarding puppy mills, thanks to my Paws4Change work and my contacts across the country whom I consider subject matter experts. I told myself I would be neutral about the movie in spite of having heard some pretty terrible things about it. In the end, I just found it to be a waste of time and money. I am sure that most animal lovers who see this film without the benefit of understanding the agenda may very well be confused. The film was produced by Protect the Harvest. The name alone should tell you a lot. In this movie, the big bad national animal welfare organization loses, the dog breeder loses, the dog lover loses and worst yet, the dogs lose. This topic is far too complex to be crammed into 90 minutes of fiction and be of any value at all to our dog loving society. What a terrible disappointment.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Corny, hilariously manipulative propaganda for the dog breeding industry, peppered with soap opera stars including the lead character who is from Days of Our Lives, and whose costume guidelines were apparently modeled after Daisy Duke, with lots of ridiculous T&A shots and a corny romantic subplot to boot. By the time you get to the country music video ol' red pickup truck cliché scene, you can be pretty certain of where this film is centered. lol. If the Lifetime Channel, The Country Music Television Channel, and the American Kennel Club made a movie, this would be it. Oh wait...

    It's probably easiest to just quote a post from another IMDb thread relating to it that is pretty much spot-on:

    "This film is a propaganda piece funded by billionaire Forrest Lucas to gain wider exposure for his failed front group, Protect the Harvest.

    Protect the Harvest is dedicated to attacking animal welfare groups, particularly those that confront cruelty in animal agriculture: factory farms, intensive confinement, and especially puppy mills.

    I'm disgusted beyond belief that James Remar and Lea Thompson would help to defend animal cruelty and sell out to one of the most despicable, dishonest, destructive individuals on this planet.

    And that's not even touching the issue of Lucas' racism... but I guess to some actors, money will always be more important than human decency."

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4063178/board/nest/244905965? ref_=tt_bd_1
  • Sometimes a movie will trick you and make you think it is about something, when it is really about something else. This is clearly a movie to make you think animal welfare people are extreme-but it is pretending to be a movie. It is 90 minutes of that. They try to craft a plot line, but it fails because all that screams out is an agenda. What a disappointment. Frankly, the topic just does not lend itself to a movie. I can't get those 90 minutes back. It was kind of surprising to see a series of B actors in it--but I guess actors are doing commercials now so maybe I should not be so surprised. If there was an agenda and they had made it clear up front, I would not have felt cheated.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Even by this films own admission there are unscrupulous breeders in business. Since the organizations that should be monitoring this industry for humane & ethical standards before certifying dogs & the facilities they are bred in are doing such a poor job, it is painfully obvious that animal welfare organizations are desperately needed to ensure dogs are maintained & sold to the public in the highest standards. The breeder, featured in this film as a target of false accusations, places blame for substandard practices of veterinary attention on someone else within the community who stole his dogs for backyard breeding. Maybe that is the truth or maybe he is actually the guilty one. Either way, until there are better laws & practices regulating this industry it is very hard to know for sure if a breeding facility is really caring for the dogs or if they are only concerned with their profits (which veterinary care & well maintained facilities eat into). Regardless the people who funded this film, Protect The Harvest, have their own agenda for making this film & I strongly encourage you to research this company before buying into what they are trying to sell you with this film.
  • Bad writing, bad acting, a little sexism thrown in all to discredit the Human Society of the United States. Who would go to the trouble to produce crap like this. Protect the Harvest, a NRA like conservative pro hunting entity that has money to burn. If you own a red hat that says "Make America Great Again" this movie is for you.
  • If The Dog Lover is trying to hide its agenda it's not doing too good a job of it. It's a slightly creepy film to watch because it does nothing short of attack government funded protection agencies for going after dog breeders in general. Are all dog breeders evil? Is every group that disagrees with your views 100% evil? Not likely but who really knows for sure outside of their own experience. Are protection agencies spotless in their record of protecting animals? I don't know that either.

    There are a lot of *suspicious* facts surrounding this movie, from the funding by a very well known opponent to Animal Cruelty bills to the fact that the ASPCA monitored "some" of the animal action in this film (haven't seen that one before and it gives me pause).

    It is interesting how viciously this film has been attacked in the mainstream media with very little convincing non-hysterical justification beyond its controversial message. The acting is on the whole very good and the script does a damn good job at presenting a plausible scenario for mismanagement by government funded agencies.

    If you go into this film with a closed mind it's only going to enrage you. It actually made me consider the other side of this issue. Did it convince me that all animal breeding is bad? No. Did it turn me against the ASPCA? Definitely not.

    I do believe that all zealotry --- for any side --- is unwise and this movie did confirm that belief. I'd want to know more about both sides of this argument before I'd support either one, but as a piece of compelling storytelling, it works. It held my interest and made me want to know more.

    Keep in mind when you read any hyper emotional review of this film that what you're being asked to do is simply think for yourself. I can think of worse ways to spend your time and money. Yes, you're probably giving money to the breeders if you rent or buy this film, but I'd be shocked if this film paid for itself, frankly. And the protection agencies have more than enough support to wage a counter attack. I'd love to hear their side of the issue as well. I'm waiting.
  • THE GOOD...

    A refreshing look at the immoral politics of the so-called "animal-rights" industry (and yes it's an industry). Acting is good. Cast is good. Story is overall entertaining and kept my interest.

    THE BAD...

    Yes, it is a bit one-sided, but only inasmuch as it fails to portray the other side as one-dimensional as the truly are. Sorry, but no PETA (they use a different name, but we all know who they are referring to) activist would be that committed to fairness and truth. These people are radicals that care nothing for truth, as is abundantly illustrated by many of the negative reviews of this movie on this site. The writers used the term "livelihood" a bit too much. It may be a selling point to some people, by but-and-large it's a weak argument, or secondary at best.

    THE UGLY...

    It's way, waaay to close to the horrible, ugly truth. PETA actually does stuff like that. They slaughter thousands of animals each year (https://www.petakillsanimals.com/), many are healthy, adoptable dogs and cats. They don't "love" animals; they love the money they bilk from gullible people who fall for their con.
  • If you're a dog lover, I highly recommend this film. Very moving with a great pay-off at the end. Really exposes the truth about some organizations. This would be a good family movie, it's educational and also interesting. It brings about the debate on puppy mills and will give you insight on what some are really about. The good people out there follow the law and get punished for it, while those who mistreat and abuse animals go unnoticed. It's an unfair system that needs recognition and this movie brought awareness to it. It makes you question people's motives and what cause they're really fighting for. I would definitely watch this film again
  • Yes, this film does seem like just another lifetime/moral-imperative b-film for the first half... Was watching with my wife and friends, and halfway through, that was exactly what i thought.

    Fortunately, I am married. Due to my love for her and my passion for the truth (as she had argued that it was worth a watch... and i disagreed halfway through...nearly questioning more than the movie), I began to feel a huge knot in my stomach.

    I began to feel a knot in my stomach that I hadn't felt in a while... Finally. Finally. A great gut-wrenching drama.

    Regardless of the truth involved, this movie forces me to question myself and our American culture...

    They say Beauty is in the eye of the beholder... and the movie poster/theme picture has really really big claims on it that sound so moral imperative Christian i would not have watched this all...

    i am glad i did.

    Johnny 5 said it best.... More input.

    HIts the mark. Comes through with what is promised on the poster picture.

    One of the first movies i have seen this year that i am glad i stuck through... because it now makes me question what made me question this movie to begin with..
  • Having had dogs for the past 16 years I felt it was necessary to see this as backyard breeding is becoming more and more common and people are making i Australia anywhere from $2000-6000 per designer breed dogs. Now that's big business if there are 6-8 in a litter. This film is not showing the cruel side but instead how there is a right and a wrong way to breed. I did a lot of research before buying my puppy recently to ensure he wasn't made just for money. Please watch this and do the same.
  • "The Dog Lover" brings us into the true world of America's animal rights movement, their organizations, and their ultimate deceptions. There are sub-standard, unregulated, puppy mills which we all agree should be shut down. However, rather than targeting these dreadful operations, American's animal rights organizations choose to fabricate false charges on highly visible and regulated professional breeders.

    The Dog Lover also gives viewers a front row seat inside many of the challenges animal husbandry faces on a daily basis. Producers Forrest Lucas and Ali Afshar certainly dedicated a great amount of time to obtain the depth of knowledge necessary to recreate such an accurate depiction of this true story.

    This movie is a must see for all. Encourage your family, friends, civic organizations, and lawmakers to see the insightful movie… The Dog Lover!
  • mattyboomboom7 October 2018
    Decent film, addresses dog breeding in a fairly accurate way. Shame it does not attempt to take on other forms of animal cruelty. It definitely will have you thinking.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This movie starts out by honestly portraying the kind of puppy mills that are the problem. It is produced by Protect the Harvest, an organization that works to protect the rights of families in animal industries.

    The breeder in the movie is not by definition a "puppy mill" but rather a 3rd generation professional breeder of high quality hunting dogs.

    The movie does a good job of pointing out the ugly side of the animal rights movement and the damage that can result from the combination of an ambitious deep pocketed non profit and overzealous, inexperienced law enforcement.

    Even with it's clear agenda, the movie is well written and the acting is very good. If you don't come in with any preconceived notions as some of the previous reviews clearly have, you will enjoy the movie for what it is, a classic David and Goliath with a very modern setting.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Investigate Before You Donate! How much money is spent by these organizations on lobbying for their own agenda and profit?!?!