HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Tyger Tyger
Filmmaker's House, The
Man Standing Next, The
Rock, Paper and Scissors
Batman: The Long Halloween Part One
Salaam Bombay!
Boss Level
My Heart Can't Beat Unless You Tell It To
Edge of the World
PTU
Superdeep
Insignificance
Treasure City
Piccadilly
Parallel
Invasión
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Agony
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Lemebel
Hands of Orlac, The
Cats
Death has Blue Eyes
Caveat
Kala Azar
Duplicate
Flashback
Gunda
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Vanquish
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
Homewrecker
   
 
Newest Articles
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
   
 
  My Dog Tulip Life's A Bitch
Year: 2009
Director: Paul Fierlinger, Sandra Fierlinger
Stars: Christopher Plummer, Lynn Redgrave, Isabella Rossellini, Peter Gerety, Brian Murray, Paul Hecht, Euan Morton
Genre: Comedy, Drama, AnimatedBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: When he was over the age of fifty, writer J.R. Ackerley (voiced by Christopher Plummer) at last found the companionship he had been seeking all those years when he rescued an Alsatian dog from neglectful owners. For the first eighteen months of her life, Tulip was largely kept tied up in their yard, not getting enough exercise and certainly not getting the training she needed to get by in the world: Ackerley observed that Alsatians could likely be unruly at the best of times, so he had his work cut out for him when he saved Tulip and offered her a new start...

Although Ackerley's book was celebrated for its depiction of how humans interact with their canine pets as one of the finest of its kind ever written, watching this film adaptation you may well wonder if it was not designed to appeal dog haters as much as it was dog lovers. That was because the story was not afraid to admit that pooches could be just as much trouble to keep as they were faithful friends, and some of their activities as depicted here were frankly revolting. As brought to the screen by husband and wife team Paul Fierlinger and Sandra Fierlinger, they did not skimp on unpleasant detail.

Paul was actually in his seventies when he made this, a rare feature in a career made up of shorts and animated inserts to other works, but although there's a slightly musty charm about it, My Dog Tulip could easily have been made by a man a fraction of his age such was the sure hand on its style that kept it interesting. What this was not by any means a Disney version of animal relationships; if anything the Fierlingers went out of their way to make this as far from that anthropomorphism as they possibly could, so there was no hint of Tulip suddenly beginning to talk, yet neither was there his owner conducting imaginary conversations with her.

You would not get Lady and the Tramp eating vomit or shitting on the floor, that's for sure, but this was what you saw Tulip doing here in a successful effort to sustain her essential canine character, the implication being that while owners and pets had a connection based on love and mutual need, they could never quite connect intellectually, leaving their regard for each other on an alien level no matter how much they thought they knew one another. Yes, they could communicate basically, but a human couldn't understand the appeal of pissing on lampposts just as the dog could see no point in reading.

As for J.R., or Joe as the others call him, Plummer guided us through his thoughts in near-continuous voiceover, and the idea of him as a great British eccentric was what powered a story which could have been mundane in the extreme. Also appearing in voice form were Isabella Rossellini, as a vet who is able to tame the rowdy Tulip enough to tend to her innoculations, and in her final role Lynn Redgrave as Joe's sister who tries to tempt the dog away from him, only Tulip is too loyal. Much of the latter half was taken up with Joe's attempts to get his pet pregnant, a baffling endeavour when you later find out he had no intention of keeping the pups and indeed planned to drown them when they were born. Rest assured he cannot bring himself to do so, but at times the narrator is just as fundamentally a puzzle as what brings people and their pets together, according to this at any rate. Highly idiosyncratic, at times disgusting, at others very funny, this wasn't quite like any other animal film. Music by John Avarese.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2042 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: