A dog-napped teacup terrier proves better behaved than the hyper humans pursuing it in "Gone Doggy Gone," a shrill satire co-directed and written by Kasi Brown and Brandon Walter.
They play workaholic, dysfunctional Los Angeles couple Abby (Brown) and Eliott (Walter). When their excessively pampered pooch, Leila, gets pinched, they take to the road in hot pursuit with an overly involved pet-sitter (Shaina Vorspan) and a slacker detective (Jeff Sloniker).
It comes as no surprise that Brown and Walter first started collaborating while attending improv classes with the Upright Citizens Brigade. The film's oddball assortment of broadly played characters feel like sketch comedy escapees stretched beyond their limits, an attempt to fill the demands of a feature-length canvas.
The film, which sets its satirical sights on more somber ransom-related movies like Ben Affleck's "Gone Baby Gone," does serve up ripe observational humor, particularly early. But the initial giddiness grows progressively annoying.
By the time the crazy train pulls into New Mexico, that adorable little Yorkie isn't the only one who'll know what it's like to be held hostage.
"Gone Doggy Gone."
MPAA rating: None.
Running time: 1 hour, 29 minutes.
Playing: Arena Cinema, Hollywood.