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Oddball and the Penguins (2015)

Oddball (original title)
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An eccentric chicken farmer, with the help of his granddaughter, trains his mischievous dog Oddball to protect a penguin sanctuary from fox attacks in an attempt to reunite his family and save their seaside town.



6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Swampy Marsh
Emily Marsh
Bradley Slater
Olivia Marsh
Jack Jones
Mayor Lake / Narrator
Kai ...
Meeko ...
Chip ...
Dave Lawson ...
Sergeant Gosch
Edith ...
Pocket's Girlfriend
Stinky ...
Frank Woodley ...
Dog Catcher
Judge Burns


The true story about an eccentric chicken farmer (Shane Jacobson) who, with the help of his granddaughter, trains his mischievous dog Oddball to protect a wild penguin sanctuary from fox attacks and in the process tries to reunite his family and save their seaside town. Written by Roadshow Films

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Every underdog has his day.


Adventure | Family


U | See all certifications »




Release Date:

12 February 2016 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Oddball and the Penguins  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Oddball was partly filmed in Warrnambool, Victoria. See more »


The building from which Oddball is rescued is an animal hospital (actually, the University of Melbourne Veterinary Hospital), not a dog pound. Australian dog pounds are much smaller and less 'palatial'. See more »


Largo Al Factotum
Written by Gioachino Rossini
Performed by Michael Charles Clark
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User Reviews

Not enough Oddball
29 December 2015 | by See all my reviews

It was W.C. Fields who said, 'Never work with animals or children.' He may have had a point because the actors in this film become almost irrelevant when Oddball, a beautiful Maremma sheepdog, shares the screen with the fairy penguins.

The film is based on real events. Apparently, Middle Island off the Victorian coast at Warrnambool, used to be home to a thousand fairy penguins until foxes started to snack down on them, reducing the population to just ten of the little guys.

Finally, a chicken farmer, Swampy (Shane Jacobson), and his dog, Oddball, come to their rescue and rid the island of foxes after hunting and trapping had failed.

The film is described as family fare, and Oddball steals every scene he is in, but I think children would be a little restless with the amount of story taken up with the affairs of the adults. Maybe the filmmakers tried to cram in too much. Along with the case for conservation, every character in the film seems to have a back-story. But it's all at the expense of more time with Oddball and the real stars of the show - the fairy penguins.

No doubt the scenes with the penguins would have been hard to do, but the film could have used a lot more of the confrontation between Oddball and the foxes - there are few long shots and much of the action seems either very close-up or off camera. Here and there the film gets to the heart of the matter - the human drama can't compete with the tension in the scene on the island when the fox sticks its head into the fairy penguin's burrow, or when Oddball saves the egg from going over the cliff.

Although no rival to "Babe", "Oddball" is nicely made, and no one will hate it, but I feel that the filmmakers missed the opportunity to make it more memorable than it is.

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