Unleashed! Arts Corner - New Films and Theater
December marked the release of Lassie, Element Films’ remake of the 1943 classic Lassie Come Home. Set in 1938, the new movie tells the story of a loyal collie who travels hundreds of miles from northern Scotland to Yorkshire to return to her young friend. While previous “Lassie” productions have featured descendants of the original Lassie trained by the Weatherwax family, this film marks the first time that a dog without Lassie lineage will play the title role. While Lassie loyalists have expressed disappointment with the casting choice on websites such as Yahoo! Movies, we at HealthyPet will happily recommend any movie that promotes and preserves the spirit of the human–animal bond.
Bark! The Musical
Now playing in Los Angeles and Chicago, this bound-for-Broadway play was given “Two Paws Up” by the HSUS. Bark! is set in a doggie daycare, told (and sung!) from the dogs’ point of view. Theater fans and pet lovers alike give rave reviews to this unique musical that, according to Gretchen Wyler, Vice President of the HSUS, “says more about dogs than the long-running Cats ever did about our feline friends.” To find out when Bark! may come to a city near you, visit www.barkthemusical.com.
Starring the voices of Sean Astin, Elisha Cuthbert, Billy Idol, Rip Torn, and Stanley Tucci, this animated adventure comedy tells the improbable tale of a cat, Rover (played by Astin), who grew up in Dogtown and travels to Catopolis to find his roots. We think this sounds purrrrrty good.
New Line Cinema thinks there is plenty of fun left in our champion dogs—so much so that the production company has called on John Landis (The Blues Brothers) to direct Show Dogs. The screenplay, written by Mike Bender, tells the story of a homeless Jack Russell terrier who finds himself suddenly thrust into the pampered but highly competitive world of dog championships. Sounds like a fishout- of-water story—without the fish!
Following on the heels of the critically acclaimed documentary March of the Penguins, this animated family adventure depicts a young, musically talented penguin in Antarctica singing and dancing his way through his many trials, tribulations, and triumphs. Hugh Jackman, Nicole Kidman, Robin Williams, and Elijah Wood lend their vocal talents to the film. Happy Feet isn’t scheduled for release until fall 2006, but you can catch the trailer now at www2.warnerbros.com/happyfeet.