Movie Review: Max (2015)

Max-1After U.S. Marine Kyle Wincott is killed in Afghanistan, Max, his highly trained service dog, is too traumatized to remain in service. Back in the U.S., Kyle’s family adopts the dog, but teenage brother Justin (Josh Wiggins) has problems of his own and doesn’t want the animal. However, Max may be Justin’s only chance to learn what really happened to his brother. With the help of a dog-savvy friend, Justin and Max begin to bond, and set out to unravel the mystery of Kyle’s death.

{Info provided by}

  • Rating: PG
  • Genre: Action and Adventure
  • Runtime: 1 hour 51 mins.
  • Release Date: June 26th, 2015
  • On DVD: Sept 29th, 2015

four starhalf star

First off, I’m going to clarify one thing with everyone, I am a huge animal lover, always have been, always will be. The very first time I saw the trailer for Max, I was so excited and knew without a doubt I needed to watch the movie. Really badly. I was ecstatic when I watched it with my friends and I’m happy to say I wasn’t disappointed.

Don’t worry, I plan on keeping this review spoiler-free as possible, as always.
I’ll start off with our two main characters, Justin, the younger brother of the deceased Kyle and his new former service dog, Max. Justin as a character begins very closed off and angry at everything. He ignores most people, does some things he shouldn’t and doesn’t get along with his father, at all. Meet Max, the dog who bonded with his brother who has come down with PTSD. He’s violent and afraid towards everyone except for Justin. As such the two are paired together, even though Justin tries to deny he wants him at all. It doesn’t take long and with a little bit of help, he becomes attached to Max and they form a beautiful bond that saves both of their lives in different ways. In a seemingly short movie, Justin manages to grow, understand some things better and become much happier. This is a growth I appreciated a lot.

Meanwhile, I adored Max and fell in love with the Shepherd immediately. The loyalty and intelligence behind Max was done amazingly well by the director and I will admit tears were brought to my eyes for Max’s sake in various scenes. What can I say, I became attached to him right alongside with Justin.

The plot itself was very nicely done and planned out. From the very beginning there were hints to twists and turns. Little bits that left the watcher piecing together what would happen themselves. It also mixed nicely with the relationship that was growing between Justin and Max, putting it to the test and challenging them. In some ways that nearly broke my heart. Seriously I can’t handle the feels from movies about dogs, or animals in general. Things that make a movie plot, like keeping it interesting, pulling the watcher in from the beginning, and not being too typical, were all present.

Also, there was a moral to the movie/story. That is always a great bonus because it leaves me feeling like I left the movie learning something. Or maybe I understand something better than I did before. At the very least, the moral from Max taught me to connect with the characters and put myself in their place much more than per usual. Of course I won’t be saying what the lesson was for me, in my opinion that’s something that belongs in the eye of the beholder.

Altogether, I truly did enjoy and love this movie. It had funny parts, great characters, some even better angst. Even a teenage love interest with a girl that wasn’t much of a person to back down. The plot for them was realistic and made it wonderful. All of these things tied together along with the basis of Justin and Max, making this a memorable movie for me that I plan on re-watching in the future.

I recommend this movie to animal lovers of course because you will absolutely love and sympathize with Max endlessly. It is also army related. A good adventure and teen movie as well. Have fun watching.

Until next time,



2 thoughts on “Movie Review: Max (2015)

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