A Dog Of Flanders

"Unbearable"

A Dog Of Flanders Review


A well-intentioned adaptation of a popular 19th Century children's story, the unfortunate film "A Dog of Flanders" plays like one of those medicinal family movies kids of generations past used to reluctantly watch over Sunday night TV dinners once the football games were over.

Full of flat acting from apple-cheeked children and miscast demi-stars with (at best) waning marquee power, it's a Dickensian yarn about a Dutch orphan who lives with his dying grandfather, saves a mangy mutt (easily the ugliest movie dog in history) from a cruel owner, develops a crush on a judgmental mill owner's daughter, discovers his inborn ability to paint through the tutelage of a wise old mentor and his admiration for the works of Peter Paul Rubens, enters an art contest and loses, gets booted from his modest home by a mean old landlord, and just about every other cheap, dramatic Victorian-era cliche you can think of.

Saddled with shopworn roadblocks (falsely accused of starting a barn fire, caught in a blizzard) to an inevitably happy ending that, of course, involves a revelation about the boy's father (one which the audience picks up on in the second reel), "A Dog of Flanders" is so busy dolling out life lessons that director Kevin Brodie apparently never stopped to think about making the movie entertaining.

Never have I heard as many fidgeting children (or fidgeting parents for that matter) in a movie as I did at the preview screening of this film. Kids and adults alike were flat out bored.

This third screen adaptation of this out-dated story was made by Jon Voight's production company, which explains his wildly out-of-place role as the art teacher. Equally miscast is Cheryl Ladd, whose undefinable accent comes an goes as the mother of the boy's love interest.

Veteran actor Jack Warden plays the grandfather, Farren Monet and Madyline Sweeten play the girl at different ages, and the orphan boy is played, also at two different ages, by a pair of young actors who could use a lot of practice named Jesse James ("Message in a Bottle") and Jeremy James Kissner ("Great Expectations," 1998).



A Dog Of Flanders

Facts and Figures

Run time: 100 mins

In Theaters: Friday 27th August 1999

Distributed by: Warner Home Video

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 21%
Fresh: 5 Rotten: 19

IMDB: 6.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Jehan Daas, as Nello, as Young Nello, as Michel, as Anna, as William, as Cogez, Andrew Bicknell as Stephens, Farren Monet as Aloise

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Captain America: Civil War Movie Review

Captain America: Civil War Movie Review

After the formulaic thrills of The Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron, Marvel's Avengers were...

Son of Saul Movie Review

Son of Saul Movie Review

From Hungary, this year's Oscar-winning foreign film is a remarkably fresh take on the Holocaust...

Demolition Movie Review

Demolition Movie Review

With its darkly emotive themes and brittle humour, this well-made drama by Jean-Marc Vallee (Dallas...

Bastille Day Movie Review

Bastille Day Movie Review

An attempt to muscle in on Luc Besson's Taken-style of thriller, this is an odd...

Secret Cinema Presents: 28 Days Later Movie Review

Secret Cinema Presents: 28 Days Later Movie Review

Expectations are a problem with this year's Secret Cinema event. After the jaw-dropping, goosebump-inducing surprises...

Jane Got a Gun Movie Review

Jane Got a Gun Movie Review

With its grindingly low-key tension and unusual perspectives, this Western has a chance to revamp...

Criminal Movie Review

Criminal Movie Review

Almost criminally entertaining, this preposterous thriller mixes buckets of humour and emotion into the violent,...

Advertisement
The Jungle Book Movie Review

The Jungle Book Movie Review

Using remarkably photorealistic animation, this remake of the 1967 Disney classic is warm and enjoyable,...

Eye in the Sky Movie Review

Eye in the Sky Movie Review

Almost forensic in its approach, this smart thriller explores a drone strike from a variety...

Midnight Special Movie Review

Midnight Special Movie Review

Gifted director Jeff Nichols takes on another genre in his fourth film with actor Michael...

Boulevard Movie Review

Boulevard Movie Review

This dark, introspective drama hinges on one of Robin Williams' final film performances before his...

The Huntsman: Winter's War Movie Review

The Huntsman: Winter's War Movie Review

Aside from success at the box office, there was nothing about 2012's rather uneven fantasy...

Black Mountain Poets Movie Review

Black Mountain Poets Movie Review

It's fairly obvious that the cast and crew began making this film with only the...

Victoria Movie Review

Victoria Movie Review

One of the most breathtaking films of the year, this ambitious story shifts from a...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.