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Review: Mike Manning, Rib Hillis, and Ashton Arbab star in ‘Powder Pup’

Actors Mike Manning, Rib Hillis, and Ashton Arbab star in the new film “Powder Pup,” which was released on March 26 via Lionsgate.

Ashton Arbab and the dog Bodi in 'Powder Pup'
Ashton Arbab and the dog Bodi in 'Powder Pup.' Photo Courtesy of Lionsgate,
Ashton Arbab and the dog Bodi in 'Powder Pup.' Photo Courtesy of Lionsgate,

Actors Mike Manning, Rib Hillis, and Ashton Arbab star in the new film “Powder Pup,” which was released on March 26 via Lionsgate.

It was directed by Ari Novak, who co-wrote the screenplay with Mike Manning (who stars as the nefarious Blake Jennings) and Miriam Rodgers.

When Shaun (Ashton Arbab), a 16-year-old Southern California surf champion, is uprooted to the mountainous terrain of Montana, he is crushed and feels like a fish out of water.

In order to raise his spirits, his father Kennith (Rib Hillis) brings home a street-start English bulldog named Bodi, who not only pulls the family together but turns out to be a world-class snowboarder.

With the help of his canine buddy, Shaun takes to the slopes and competes to be the top dog in the annual Powder Fest snowboarding competition.

Jay Mohr and Maiah Wynne also star as sportscaster Alec and Kayla respectively. Internet personality Morgan Harvill is delightful as Madison.

Rib Hillis is encouraging as Kennith, who tries to persuade his son that Montana has a solid snowboarding scene. It is also neat to see a different side to Mike Manning’s acting (the villain) that most fans of his work are normally used to.

The Verdict

Overall, “Powder Pup” is a fun family adventure film. Joey Diaz is hilarious in the voice of the dog Bodi. It is about a teen Shaun finding his place in a new state (Montana) and learning a new skill (snowboarding) with a little help from his new dog.

This is a sweet movie about perseverance, the power of friendship, and the pursuit to follow one’s dreams. It appeared to be a labor of love for all actors involved. “Powder Pup” is feel good escapism.

By the end of watching this film, one will want to adopt a bulldog. It is worth more than just a passing glance, and it garners a B+ rating.

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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