Entertaining and fun dog movie shot in marvelous outdoors with very well trained animals . Exciting life of a Collie named Lassie is here expanded to include the adventures of the humans who surround the dog . Set England and Scotland , about the fate of a wonderful Collie dog and the people who own and command them , there are splendidly revealed as Lassie narrates the circle of his life and seen through its own carefree life . A family in financial crisis is forced to sell Lassie , their intimate dog . As Sam (John Lynch) , his wife (Samantha Morton) and children are forced to sell the dog to the Duke (Peter O'Toole) . The Duke moves to the Scottish Highlands for the holiday season and Lassie is hundreds of miles away from her true family . Lassie escapes , and sets out on a journey home suffering many hardships , passing several owners both good and bad and after achieving freedom . This dog more than a Hero is a legend .
Handsome take off of the Eric Knight family novel but sometimes fails to capture qualities that make this book a classic . There were some earlier "Lassies," in literature of the 1800's, as well as in silent films . Eric Knight, a British-born author, wrote a Lassie character in a short story in 1940 , then expanded it to a novel called "Lassie Come Home," which became the first Lassie sound film . This is a new classic for a new generation, a thrilling saga of courage and loyalty . The animals in this film were in no way harmed or mistreated , and all scenes in which they appeared were under strict supervision with utmost concern for their handling . Narrated quite energetically , as the story is efficiently told and through its profound and wizened eyes . One thread that connects all the Lassie projects is Lassie herself . Every one of the long string of Lassie productions has featured a collie directly descended from the original canine star, a dog named Pal . The new film was made with 8-year-old Lassie the ninth, and three other non-related collies , whose biggest challenge were in scenes swimming across Loch Ness on her way home . The impressive scenery , photography and music enhance the story of ¨Lassie¨ and its adventures , sufferings and adversities . The tale is treated in good sense and high sensibility ; environment , animals , landscapes combine to enhance the glories of nature , one of which , after all , is silence . Good cast full of fine British actors as Peter O'Toole , Peter Dinklage , Kelly Mcdonald , Robert Hardy , Edward Fox and John Standing . Glowing and glamorous cinematography by Howard Atherton ; of all the Lassie films ever produced , this was the first one to be shot in the 2.35:1 aspect ratio . Sensitive as well as emotive musical score by Adrian Johnston . The music all plays with the soul , it is so delicately composed, performed, and chosen for the movie that it is worth seeing just to enjoy the soundtrack . The motion picture was marvelously directed by Charles Sturridge (The scapegoat , Shackleton , Gulliver's travels , Fairy tale).
Other films based on this famous novel are the followings : the classic and original Lassie was first performed by a male collie named Pal and played Lassie in all of the early sound films such as ¨Lassie comes home¨ (1943) with Elizabeth Taylor , Roddy McDowall , Donald Crisp , Dame May Witty and Edmund Gwenn ; ¨Sons of Lassie¨ (1945) with Peter Lawford , Donald Crisp , June Lockhart and Nigel Bruce ; ¨Courage of Lassie¨ (1946) with Elizabeth Taylor , Frank Morgan , Tom Drake and Harry Davenport ; ¨Challenge to Lassie¨ with Edmund Gwenn , Donald Crisp , Geraldine Brooks and Reginald Owen . And subsequent follow-up played by Pal's descendants in the TV series and TV appearances and in most Lassie films since ¨Lassie's great adventure¨ (1963) with June Lockhart , Hugh Reilly , Jon Provost , Richard Kiel , ¨Lassie¨(1994) with Tom Guiry , Helen Slater , Jon Tenney and Frederic Forrest , among others .