|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Direction:||Channing Tatum, Reid Carolin|
|Production country:||USA 2022|
|Running time:||Approx. 101 min.|
Army Ranger Jackson Briggs (Channing Tatum) is eager to be recruited for a new assignment. But to do so, he needs a certificate from his superior officer. To get it, Briggs has to take on an unusual assignment: He is to drive the dog Lulu across the U.S. to the funeral of a soldier with whom Briggs himself was friends. Lulu, a Belgian Malinois bitch who was used in military service for years, proves to be an extremely stubborn fellow traveler. But as they travel in Briggs' Ford Bronco along the U.S. Pacific Coast, the soldier and the dog grow closer and Briggs realizes that this mission could change his life...
"Dog" is not only Channing Tatum's directorial debut. Rather, it's also a very personal film. In 2018, Tatum's dog Lulu was diagnosed with terminal cancer. In order to share a few special last moments together, the actor took his dog on a road trip along the Pacific coast. Afterwards, he knew he wanted to direct a film about a special friendship between a man and a dog. Together with his good friend Reid Carolin, he developed the story. Carolin then wrote the script and co-directed the film alongside Tatum.
The result is a mix of drama and comedy that tells of letting go and starting over. The whole thing is embedded in snapshots of the journey, which are sometimes amusing and then again rather thoughtful. It's well acted and nicely filmed, though in some moments it's a bit thick. Especially the conversations about serving in the Army probably only work to a limited extent outside the US. On a positive note, Tatum and Carolin have not delivered a commercial for the military, but rather critique the treatment of veterans.
Not every one of the many little episodes the film tells works. But the moments when humor, charm and heart take over are clearly in the majority. Thus, "Dog" may not be a masterpiece. But Channing Tatum's directorial debut is a very entertaining road movie and a declaration of love for the special relationship between man and dog. And thus there is for the film, which has become a real surprise hit in the U.S., also a deserved: worth seeing!
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp