Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Hachi: A Dog's Tale

If you've seen the preview for this movie, you know the whole story.  Richard Gere brings home a lost puppy he finds at the train station.  He grows attached, and his wife reluctantly agrees that they can keep him.  The dog follows him to the station every day, then comes back to the station at the end of the day to greet him as he gets off the commuter train.  Gere dies, but the dog still greets the train every day.  He does so for years, and becomes a fixtures in the little town.
Even knowing the story, and even though it's told in a white-washed, Hallmark movie-of-the-week way, Hachi is still a moving story.  It's based on the true story of a dog who continued coming to the train station in Tokyo for 9 years after his master's death.  A statue of Hachiko was erected in 1934 at the train station.
Predictable, yes.  Manipulative tear-jerker, yes.  Sappy, yes.  Thoroughly enjoyable and heart-warming, yes and yes.  I watched it with my boys, who weren't quite as impressed, but they liked it just the same.

Bottom line, 3 stars.

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