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The Plot Thickens

Photo: Taelar Pollmann ⋅ The Sentry

The Call of the Wild

Over the weekend, I ventured down to Colorado Springs to spend less than 24 hours with my mother, and even less of that time with my father. The point of my visit was to go to a mini-Mardi Gras parade in Manitou Springs on Saturday morning. Friday night when I arrived, and as soon as I walked through the door of my parents’ apartment, my father came up to me and said, “We’re seeing Call of the Wild.”

So, a few hours later, I found myself sitting in the largest auditorium at the closest theater to their apartment, with my father, a large bin of popcorn, and a large Diet Coke beside me.

Seeing The Call of the Wild was not what I had planned for my Friday night, but when all was said and done, I didn’t mind it either. The movie was nowhere near as bad as I (or my father secretly) had expected it to be. It’s not a very serious or tonally heavy film, but it’s a family-friendly(ish) adventure about dogs, so there is already an enjoyable element to it.

I’d like to point out that I’m not a sucker for dog movies–there have been plenty that I haven’t cried at (this one included). I am also in no way a fan of Call of the Wild. I don’t believe my father has ever read the book. I tried in eighth grade English class, but found it incredibly boring and have never finished it. I’ve also never seen any other film adaptation, so at least watching this new take on the tale proved to be an unfamiliar journey to me.

If I might just add a small tangent about Mr. Harrison Ford, the star of the film, I’d like to say that not only is he who I would consider my father’s favorite actor, he’s also one of mine. Maybe he isn’t the best thespian ever, but there’s just something undeniable entertaining about his screen presence. Maybe he just reminds me of my dad in lots of ways. It doesn’t hurt either that he’s in some of the most iconic films of all time. 

While watching the weird-but-not-terrible CGI dog run around, I was reminded of my own dog back in Alabama. Though we called him Chip (short for Chocolate Chip), the name he was given by the owner we bought him from was Buck. Buck, as in the main character of Call of the Wild. I knew that back when I tried to read the novel years ago, and I was reminded of it Friday night. The movie made me miss my old dog, so, it’s good for that if nothing else. Maybe I am a sucker for dog movies sometimes.

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