I'll never forget how much my father wanted to see Dances with Wolves when it first came out. Although the movie received rave reviews, I had no interest. I got nervous at the mention of going. The poor guy went alone. When he came home, he said "Kristen, don't ever see that movie."
I knew exactly why. I could watch the goriest or horror flicks and the most suspenseful nail biters, but, as my dad so rightly put it, I'm "not good with movies where animals get into scrapes." I have followed my dad's advice, and I still haven't seen Dances With Wolves.
In my teens, I became a vegetarian after seeing City Slickers. And not just for a day. For three years! Oh, Norman!
Why is it that some of us can watch human actors die slow, sad deaths or be slaughtered by some dude with an ax with no problem, yet when we see an animal die in a movie, it creates–at minimum–a week of depression?
I have a theory.
There are some amazing human actors out there. They make us cry and laugh and feel things deeply. But we can almost always see the acting. And we know who they are. We know that if Leonardo DiCaprio bites the dust in this movie, he'll win an oscar for next year's flick. In contrast, animals don't usually become ultra-famous. They just are who they are. And you can't see the acting. I'm fully aware that "no animals were harmed in the making of this film," but those animals in those scrapes are so much more believable. And, chances are, we won't see them in next year's big blockbuster. When they fade on screen, that's it. We really do, in a sense, lose them.
So here are ten movies I've never seen. Most are classics and I'm sure should be seen. But, no thank you.
Old Yeller (1957)
The Incredible Journey (1963)
Where the Red Fern Grows (1974)
All Dogs Go to Heaven (1989)
Turner & Hooch (1989)
Dances With Wolves (1990)
Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey (1993)
My Dog Skip (2000)
Marley & Me (2008)
Hachi: A Dog's Tale (2009)
Do you have a theory about why these movies are so hard to watch? Which of these movies have you seen? Which others would you add to the list?
All movie poster images sourced from IMDb.