Call of the Wild is based off a book written by Jack Lindon in 1903. It is based on an abnormally large and strong willed dog named Buck. At the start of the movie we get to see a glimpse of Buck’s home life, he lives with a rich family in California and gets up to all kinds of mischief. Buck spent many nights outside for his bad behaviour, but one night was different from the rest. A scout had noticed him and not for anything good.
He followed Buck home and waited for his time to strike. They kidnapped Buck and sold him to be a sled dog in the Yukon where he was set to work during the Gold Rush of the 1890's. Buck has many handlers throughout his time in the Yukon some good...and some very bad. Some try to break Buck and some succeed. As he's passed from owner to owner Buck starts to feel something. One of his owner's is John Thorton (Harrison Ford), and they help each other find their way.
They are both looking for something in the North, one is trying to run away and the other is trying to run towards. Together they help each other and they start to find their way, to the place they are meant to be. He struggles with his new surroundings and this unfamiliar place but as time goes on he starts to feel the pull. The call of the wild. Buck longs to be free, to be able to run and be wild but first he must face the obstacles and the people standing in his way.
The director Chris Sanders made great choices for the cast of this movie, I may not have like the characters they played, but they played them so well. Chris Sanders made a good choice using CGI for this movie. In the 1890's it was common for people to put their working dogs in their place.
They would beat/scare them into submission and it would've been much harder to watch if it had been actual dog. Also, having CGI for Buck was an excellent choice, no dog would give those facial expressions, and it was instrumental to this movie. Having a movie with the dog as the main character and the dog doesn't talk is a hard thing to do, But Chris Sanders was able to make it work.
Personally, this movie was hard to watch for me. Yes there were some good aspects; the CGI was cool, the picture was nice but I couldn't get past how cruel they were to the dogs and how they wanted to break them. Yes I understand the time this movie takes place but at the same time it was difficult to watch, some moments I even wanted to leave. I know this movie was based off a book and sometimes making them into movies works. In this case I don't feel like it did.
This is a movie that I don't think I would recommend to anyone. Yes it has a good cast but I don't feel like that is enough for this movie. The film started off good but it was drawn out and too long. I don't know if this movie could have gone any better. I really wanted to like it but I just didn't feel any real draw to the picture. There was nothing really pulling me in, just things that made me want to leave.
The Call of the Wild Review at Theater with Standard Viewing
Screening Provided by Disney