Movie Review: Strays (Greenbaum, 2023)

Strays Movie Review
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Movie: Strays

Production Companies: Lord Miller Productions, Picturestart, Rabbit Hole Productions

Director: Josh Greenbaum

Producers: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, Erik Feig, Aditya Sood, Louis Leterrier, Dan Perrault

Scriptwriter: Dan Perrault

Main Cast: Will Ferrell, Jamie Foxx, Isla Fisher, Randall Park, Brett Gelman, Will Forte

Release Date: August 18th 2023

Running Time: 93 minutes 

Certificate: 15


That was definitely the dog’s dinner… Terrible pun aside, Strays is certainly an interesting watch. Whether it’s the stacked voice cast or interesting premise, Strays certainly has something for a lot of people. But that all depends on your tolerance for talking dogs and toilet humour as there’s an abundance of both in the film. Like *That* scene which allegedly had to be cut down and don’t worry I’ll mention that later. Anyway, without further ado here is my review of the film.


Strays follows Reggie (Ferrell) who is abandoned by his abusive owner Doug, (Forte), and winds up falling in with a group of other stray dogs: Bug (Foxx), Maggie (Fisher) and Hunter (Park) amongst others. Eventually, Reggie realises after doing mushrooms that Doug wasn’t a very good owner so decides the best revenge is served by biting his d**k off. Yep, not one word of that is false. Reggie’s only problem is he doesn’t know the way back except for a few very specific landmarks but we don’t mention that. In the end, there’s some attempted heartwarming messages about family and leaving no one behind but you’ll probably have been distracted by the fact Doug got his d**k ripped off. So, with the minimal plot out of the way here is some analysis.


Humour in Strays

So what better place to start off my analysis of Strays than with the crass humour? Well, it’s clear the film is making the most of that 15 rating with some very interesting scenes. Now don’t get me wrong the scene where Bud and Reggie eat a bunch of mushrooms is pretty funny. And seeing Ferrell and Foxx voicing stoned dogs is hilarious. But, at some points the film feels a bit like a lot of more recent Family Guy. That means its crass for the sake of being crass.

A perfect example of this is the cut scene which Josh Greenbaum attests got cut from the film because of too much s**t in it. Talk about s**t hitting the fan and various other terrible puns you can make. This is arguably the film’s biggest problem as when being crass is the only joke it can tell it gets tired very quickly. Even in spite of the aforementioned dogs doing shrooms which needs to be seen to be believed. 

Vocal Performances in Strays

Now even if the humour is the most repetitive thing since Amy Schumer, surely the vocal performances are good? And you’d be mostly right. Because like the humour your love for said performances hinges heavily on your love of Will Ferrell. Now while he is very entertaining in his oblivious and eventually vengeful performance as Reggie because of the sheer energy he brings to all of his roles, it does get slightly grating at times.

The same could be said for Jamie Foxx’s performance as Bug. Again, it’s exactly what you’d expect from Foxx with plenty of sass and offbeat humour. Along with the general insanity of the mushroom scene. Bar the two leads (nice pun there), most of the performances are a bit meh. So, the overall lesson to take here is that a lot of these actors should have gone for a walk when their agents gave them the scripts.


To summarise Strays, this is a fine enough film which you can tell is made by the same studio as Ted and Cocaine Bear with plenty of crass humour and shock humour moments. Now while this is fine enough in small doses it does grate away at the audience’s patience and takes them to the end of their lead. 

Overall Rating: 5.5/10 – Above Average

Target Audience: 15+

Content Warning: Moderate Sex and Nudity, Mild Violence and Gore, Severe Profanity, Moderate Alcohol, Drugs and Smoking, Mild Frightening and Intense Scenes

Recommendation: No