Lassie | Chicago Reader

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Rated PG · 99 minutes
Shortly before the outbreak of World War I, a Yorkshire miner (John Lynch) and his wife (Samantha Morton) regretfully sell their beautiful collie to a local duke (Peter O'Toole) who takes it to northern Scotland. This turn of events grieves their young son (Jonathan Mason), but the dog escapes and makes its way home. Like the MGM classic Lassie Come Home, this handsome 2005 English feature was adapted from the novel by Eric Knight, and it's a welcome throwback to the carefully crafted family films of the studio era. The scenery is lovely, and the cast is entirely worthy of the enterprise (including the regal and athletic star). Writer-director Charles Sturridge overplays the nastiness of a comic villain but more than makes up for it with a wonderful episode involving a traveling puppeteer (Peter Dinklage).

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