- SKU: 6412436
- Release Date: 09/02/2012
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Both Benji the dog and his trainer Frank Inn play themselves in Benji the Hunted. Accidentally separated from Inn early in the film, the loveable pooch is forced to fend for himself in the Pacific Northwest. He latches onto a litter of cougar cubs, protecting them from harm while he himself has been targetted for a quick demise by a voracious black timber wolf. Filmed in Oregon and Washington, Benji the Hunted is more of the same from writer/director Joe Camp, the man who brought you all those earlier Benji epics. Camp's tendency to direct his doggie star with more confidence than his human actors is very pronounced here; in fact, the film would have benefitted immensely by a complete lack of human characters. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Rascal, the Sterling North novel that has been a longtime fixture of Scholastic Magazine book clubs, was given Tiffany treatment by the Disney studios in 1969. Bill Mumy plays young Sterling North, whose Wisconsin childhood is enriched through his friendship with a stray raccoon. Though lacking the emotional depth of the novel, the film is distinguished by the lovingly detailed outdoor photography that has always been a Disney hallmark. Likewise a "regular" in the Disney canon are scenes of animals wreaking comic destruction and wild chase sequences, and Rascal does not flag when offering these. A favorite of the Saturday matinee circuit, Rascal has in recent years become a standard weekend TV offering whenever a sports event is rained out or otherwise delayed. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
The Journey of Natty Gann
Disney's The Journey of Natty Gann stars Meredith Salenger in the title role. During the Depression, Natty's father (Ray Wise) takes a job in a Northwestern lumber camp, leaving his daughter behind in Chicago with the promise that he'll send for her when he's put together enough money. Unwilling to wait that long, Natty runs away from her guardian (Lainie Kazan) and hops a freight bound for her dad's camp. In addition to the human friends she accrues along the way, including vagabond John Cusack and tough-but-nice juvenile delinquent Barry Miller, Natty is protected on her journey by a friendly wolf (actually a dog, but you try training a wolf). Journey of Natty Gann stretches its "PG" rating as far as possible, but it's still safe and sane entertainment for the younger crowd. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Where the Red Fern Grows
Based on the 1961 children's novel by Wilson Rawls, Where the Red Fern Grows is a family-oriented drama four years in the making. This project is co-directed by Lyman Dayton, who also adapted the screenplay and produced the 1974 filmed version. The story involves 12-year-old Billy Coleman (Joseph Ashton), who lives in the Ozark mountains with his mother, Jenny (Renee Faia), and father, Will (Dave Matthews of the Dave Matthews Band). Billy's grandfather (Dabney Coleman) encourages him to save money to buy a hunting dog. For two years, Billy does odd jobs in order to save the money. When he finally gets enough, he buys two puppies and names them Old Dan and Little Ann. Billy eventually trains them to become hunting dogs and enters the Fall Hunting Competition. Also starring Kris Kristofferson and Ned Beatty. Even though principal photography started in 1999, Where the Red Fern Grows didn't premiere until the 2003 Tribeca Film Festival due to numerous production difficulties and law suits. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi
Cast & Crew
- Benji - Benji
- Red Steagall - Hunter
- Nancy Francis - Newscaster
- Mike Francis - TV Cameraman
- Frank Inn - Himself