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'Hotel for Dogs'

Kids will watch most anything with a dog in it - witness "Beverly Hills Chihuahua" and "Marley & Me." But studios usually have the sense to send the runts of the dog-movie litter direct to video.

"Hotel for Dogs," a laughless, gadget-geared and poop-obsessed kid comedy based on a Lois Duncan book, will sorely test any parent hoping to have a few laughs with the kids.

Emma Roberts and Jake T. Austin play orphaned siblings Andi and Bruce, con artists who endure their cheap and moronic foster parents ( Lisa Kudrow, Kevin Dillon) just so they can be near Friday, a terrier they're keeping on the sly. Friday is just like them, a teenage dog in a world where those who adopt only want puppies (or babies). The kids stumble across an abandoned hotel where other strays have taken up residence. Andi and Bruce start taking in dogs there. The cute teens from the pet store pitch in. How will they take care of them all, feed them, deal with their droppings and keep all this from Animal Control or their social worker ( Don Cheadle, a little embarrassed to be here)?

The canines deliver a few decent "aww" moments. But that's not enough to justify putting this cur on the big screen.

Rated PG

PLOT Young siblings turn an abandoned hotel into a home for stray dogs.

CAST Emma Roberts, Lisa Kudrow, Kevin Dillon , Jake T. Austin


PLAYING AT Area theaters. Search for tickets near you

BOTTOM LINE Humorless, gadget-geared and poop-obsessed kid comedy will sorely test any parent s patience.


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