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By Don R. Lewis | January 29, 2002

Apparently in the publicity for “Bark,” they’ve gone with “Bark- the film that bites.” Well, for once those publicity people got it right. “Bark” DEFINITELY bites. The story centers on a woman named Lucy (Morgan) who can’t handle the stresses of daily life and decides to check out. Rather than end her life or move from the big city, she decides to become the thing she loves most and starts to bark like a dog. So, when the neighbors are awakened by the sound of one of those annoying yipper dogs, Lucy’s confused husband Lee is forced to quiet his wife. Luckily, he too is a dog lover so no muzzle is involved.
Lee doesn’t know what to do so he calls his sugar addicted vet (Kudrow) and, surprise, surprise she’s of no help. His loser friend Sam (Azaria) is also no help, but at least he’s funny and adds some punch to this film. In a final act of desperation Lee seeks counsel from what is most likely a patient at a mental institute who thinks he’s a doctor (D’Onofrio). With an oddball gang assembled, we trudge forward through this heavy handed social commentary.
I hate to sound like such a smartass, but this movie is as lame as it sounds. I actually like the idea of a person so sensitive and so distraught by the world we live in, they resort to becoming something else. But in the case of “Bark,” it’s her husbands reaction, and subsequent solution (s) that drove me nuts. The reaction of those he brings into the situation is also suspect as is the mere presence of D’Onofrio’s character. He serves no purpose except to make you realize what a dolt Lee is for clinging on to anyone who will listen.
On the plus side, Lucy is a girl so there’s no leg humping in this film. I also didn’t detect any ball sniffing, which no one likes. Maybe I’m just not a dog person, but I wish this film came with a baggie for clean up.

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