Monday, September 17, 2007

Year of the Dog is Not a Comedy

I have never been able to hack it when bad things happen to animals in the movies.

When I was ten and saw Gone With the Wind for the first time, the only time I cried during the movie is when a horse drops dead from exhaustion.

So, in spite of knowing the basic storyline of Year of the Dog in advance of seeing the movie, I completely lost it when the bad thing happens near the beginning. I don't mean I got verklempt. I mean that kind of sloppy wheezy sobbing.

We have a dog now, as you know.

And he was curled up at our feet as we were watching this sad, not a comedy movie, and I just, okay he's a puppy still he's not a year and a half old really, but this dog in the movie was a puppy and bad things happen but I would seriously just die if any bad thing happened to our dog so I don't really even know why we're talking about it.

It's a good movie, by the way. And there are one or two funny things in it. But it's just not a comedy.


Matt said...

I think I'm going to have to steal your "bad things not happening to them" animal safety force field label. Subconsciously, this is probably why you wrote the article, being the good dog parent that you are.

If it makes you feel any better, I get the distinct impression that pets understand and appreciate the difference between pet "acting" and news stories/documentaries where bad things actually do take place.

I once watched "Where the Red Fern Grows" and was getting close to losing it and I glance over and my dog is giving me a look like I'm the dumbest SOB (literally) on the face of the earth. The same dog runs out of the room when I'm watching a news story on cock-fighting in Appalachia. I can only imagine the reaction that the recent unpleasantness with a certain NFL Quarterback would have caused.

/of course, the pet in question was a Retriever mix, so experiences may vary depending on how urbane your breed may be

//cats don't care as long as your lap is warm

Katie Alender said...

Oh, I hate that! I'm a huge cryer if the animal storyline is sad. Luckily, my dog thinks my tears are delicious.

tony fitzpatrick said...

Ever since they capped 'Old Yeller' in the Disney movie, I've not been able to bear cruelty to dogs, or any other animal for that matter . Having just lost my beloved Chocolate Lab, I'm especially sensitive to it lately....

kfoz said...

Bad things happen not just to the puppy in the movie. They happen to every single animal, sometimes simply ....because. And that's why I hated it, even though it had some good moments too. Usually I like Mike White and how everyone in his movies is a selfish freak. But not this time.

Pasadena, on the other hand, was brilliant.

Betsy said...

Matt, I always knew you were a softie. That is so, so funny about your dog.
Katie - I can't take it.
Tony - And what about Bambi's mother? How could they do that in a kids movie?
Ken - Pasadena?

kfoz said...

Pasadena was Mike White's primetime soap opera, about a wealthy family in Pasadena that owns a newspaper empire. Dana Delaney is the mom, Alison Lohman is the daughter who thinks her family is guilty of a Martha Moxley style coverup, Martin Donovan is the father, Balthazar Getty is the black sheep of the family, Mark Valley is Dana Delaney's brother (and they have a very close relationship, if you know what mean...), Natasha Gregson Wagner is the artist wannabe...

It debuted right around 9/11 and was quickly cancelled, but last year SoapNet reran all the unaired episodes.

I wish it was on DVD!

Anonymous said...

I hated this movie. It made me cry so hard, and having three dogs die was too much of a sucker-punch. It's easy to make people feel sad when a puppy dies, or an abused dog dies, or when a crippled dog dies (yes, they had the trifecta of dog qualities that make people go "Awww" ... and then they all died!!!). This movie was so depressing that I spent the rest of the day feeling bad.