Flash Movie Review: A Dog’s Way Home

AS A CHILD I HAD A MENAGERIE of literary animals for pets. There was Old Yeller, Stuart Little, Peter Rabbit and Black Beauty to name a few. Among all these friends I had Doctor Dolittle on call just in case there was an emergency. There was always room for another animal to join my group, which explains why I made frequent trips to the library. Looking across the bookshelves, I would read every title on the shelves. With any title that sounded intriguing to me, I had to pull the book out to investigate and see if the story involved an animal. It did not matter what species; if there was mention of an animal, whether it was a pet or in the wild, I would check out the book. A fond memory of mine was seeing a movie that was based on a book I had read. Seeing Black Beauty or Lassie on the big or small screen was like a dream come true for me. And speaking of Lassie, when I was real small any collie I saw I immediately thought was Lassie. When they would not come up to me after calling her name, I would be sad.      MY LOVE OF ANIMALS STAYED WITH me as I grew up. The pets my friends and relatives had were my surrogate pets. I could spend hours playing with a dog or cat. The other thing I would do was to simply follow and watch them. There are so many memories I have involving animals; each one as vivid today as when they were first formed. One of my oldest memories was going to a small zoo in a neighborhood park. There were only 8 or 9 different animals in it. I remember holding on to a railing in front of the cage and holding a marshmallow up in the air to get a bear to stand on its hind legs. The first time the bear stood up I went wild with excitement. I immediately deemed the bear my pet and would always go to its cage first before going to any of the other animals. I am certain many of us have fond memories revolving around animals. With so many stories having been done I cannot imagine non-animal lovers not knowing a few of them, at least. And now adding to our list of animal favorites comes Bella out of this adventure family film.      HOME WAS A SPECIAL PLACE THAT Bella, voiced by Bryce Dallas Howard (Pete’s Dragon, Jurassic World franchise), knew all too well. That is why she could not give up on her 400-mile journey to get back home. With Jonah Hauer-King (Postcards from London, Little Women-TV) as Lucas, Alexandra Shipp (Straight Outta Compton; Love, Simon) as Olivia, Ashley Judd (Double Jeopardy, Heat) as Terri and Edward James Olmos (Blade Runner, Stand and Deliver) as Axel; this movie had a built-in cute factor due to Bella. It would be hard not to enjoy watching Bella and the animals she encountered in her life; however, cuteness can only go for so long. The entire production here came off a bit amateurish. The script was predictable as it periodically set up scenes to pull at the viewers’ heartstrings. The acting seemed stilted to me, to the point I preferred watching Bella when there were no humans around. The main issue about this picture was how generic it was in telling a story that has been done so many times before and better. This is not something you have to run out and go see; especially since there were a couple of scenes that I felt would be scary for younger children. I fell in love with Bella, but she deserved a better movie to star in than this one.

 

2 stars

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About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on January 15, 2019, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. So Bella has human language thoughts? Not interested. I do like animal stories, though. My all-time favorite is “White Fang.”

  2. This trailer brought tears to my eyes… It’s true, animals love is forever and unconditional!
    Your article is funny and I remember loving watching the movie Dr Dolittle – really great! I don’t think I’ll watch this one though; a dog I adopted a couple of years ago was very sick and she died 10 months ago after a long illness. Coincidentally, a couple of months after her death, another dog had a litter (I live in Cambodia, we have plenty of community dogs) and one of the puppies had some severe mange and other health-related problems. I took her with me and now she is a very healthy and happy puppess! I can’t bear any more pain related to losing our beloved even if temporarily.

    • I cannot tell you anything else about this film, but I will say this is a Hollywood film so any sadness will me temporary. Thank you for sharing your story, it is beautiful.

      • After having discovered Chinese Wuxia movies (fantasy) I hardly ever watch any more Hollywwod movies (too much violence and sex). Check them out if you get a chance! They often publish them on You Tube (legally) with English subtitles (often submitted by volunteers). But I must warn you, once you start watching it will be impossible to stop: they are very addictive! The colors, the scenery, the impeccable acting and the wonderful CGI (getting better and better at it). Hollywood has been dishing out the same movies over and over again. The last Western work I truly enjoyed was the Stranger Things series but I believe it was produced by Netflix. Another great one was a You Tube series (non free) called Kobra Kai: lots of important messages and not the usual over sexed, over stereotyped, macho-oriented BS!

      • Thank you so much; I never heard of these types of films so will check them out.

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