The Art of Racing in the Rain is now showing in cinemas nationwide.
It would be fair to say that I had limited expectations for The Art of Racing in the Rain. After all, it is yet another Hollywood dog story, where mans best friend holds a universal knowledge and understanding of life that us mere humans struggle to achieve. Adapted from the book by film producer Garth Stein The Art of Racing in the Rain takes us on a journey through the life of a Golden Retriever named Enzo, his inner thoughts placed into the hands of one Kevin Costner. Yes, that’s right, Kevin Costner has gone from Robin Hood to Golden Retriever in a career that keeps on giving.
Denny (Milo Ventimiglia) is a semi-professional race car driver renowned for his ability to handle a racing car in wet conditions, just as well, considering the tears the film is trying to coax out! However, I digress; on getting a new dog called Enzo (Costner), Denny’s life changes, something every dog owner will fully understand. But as Denny and Enzo become inseparable, Denny is unaware that Enzo is quietly guiding his life and career.
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Costner’s Enzo takes us on a journey into life, loss and dog biscuits as The Art of Racing in the Rain takes square aim at your tear ducts. But does it achieve what it sets out to do by having you blub into your popcorn? It reaches its goal in spades for all its faults, of which are too many to list. Anyone (like me) who looks at their dog every day knowing that their furry companion knows more about them than any other living creature will succumb to this slushy nonsense in a heartbeat.
The Art of Racing in the Rain certainly isn’t cinematic gold; it is far from it, but it also never tries to hide what it is; a gooey Hallmark-inspired matinee. It’s true that it’s crammed full of more sugar than the coke you are guzzling in the cinema and that it’s quickly forgotten as you leave the screen behind. But to give credit where it’s due, The Art of Racing in the Rain achieves exactly what it sets out to do.