BLACK BEAUTY (1994)
Narrated from the perspective of the horse, this episodic, sometimes slow-paced adventure is beautifully photographed, with life lessons for children. A close adaptation to the Anna Sewell animal-rights classic, it concerns the life of an extraordinary horse as it passes from one owner to another. Starring Sean Bean and David Thewlis, this G-rated movie is a great film for the family. There are several films with the same title, but this 1994 production is the best.
HACHI: A DOG’S TALE (2010)
I’ve seen ‘em all, from Lassie to My Dog Skip, but I think this one is the best dog movie because there’s no subplot with the animal saving the family from home invaders or romancing another canine over a bowl of spaghetti. It’s a very simple story (though full of poignancy) about a man connecting with a dog. Truly one of God’s greatest gifts to humankind, these creatures teach us so much about loyalty and dedicated love. I know animals don’t have souls, but I’m thinking our doggies from the past will be up in Heaven, waiting our arrival. Only difference – no poop bags. Rated G. MOVIE REPORTER REVIEW
OLD YELLER (1957)
Adventure, humor and pathos all surround a pup who protects a farm family.
MY DOG SKIP (2002)
Drawn from Willie Morris’s best-selling memoir, My Dog Skip is a coming-of-age tale that looks back on how a terrier pup helped a shy boy, bullied by schoolmates and strictly handled by an aloof father, come to grips with loneliness. Young Frankie Muniz as the film’s junior protagonist is never cutesy or precocious, but rather down to earth. It is replete with lessons in friendship, loneliness, and death. And that dog - he could give Snoopy charm lessons! - Use TVG. MOVIE REPORTER REVIEW
NATIONAL VELVET (1944)
More than anything, a 12-year-old girl (Elizabeth Taylor) wants to enter the Grand National Steeplechase on her beloved horse, Pie. Engrossing story from a child’s point of view, with a terrific supporting cast and breath-taking photography.