Friday, March 1, 2013

Quill: The Life of a Guide Dog

A yellow lab is determined by his master to be special  and sent to live with a family who trains guide dogs. Separated again while still a puppy, he then enrolls in a school where he struggles to keep pace but shows great instinct for the art of blind assistance. His first human charge is a cantankerous writer (Kaoru Kobayashi in an enjoyable, hammy performance) who is scared to give up his cane but quickly forms a bond with the extraordinary pooch. In keeping with my misanthropic duties, I feel obligated to say that films about pets are too easy to do. That being said, "Quill: The Life of a Guide Dog" is a sweet, funny, and disarming family film. Made in Japan in 2004, it's shocking that it took eight years to find distribution, and if the great American fear of subtitles played a factor (which I suspect it did), those buying into that idiocy are missing out on a movie they would surely cherish.