Red Dog: Australia’s Greatest Canine Caper Coming to Netflix

Koko from Red Dog is likely to steal your heart with her "family tree" performance in this Forrest Gump-meets-The Littlest Hobo tale that is tinged with tragedy.

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Red Dog’s Koko is likely to steal your heart with her “pedigree” performance in this Forrest Gump meets The Littlest Hobo story that’s tinged with tragedy.

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Red Dog (M, 92 minutes) Directed by Kriv Stenders ***

“Out of where the rain doesn’t fall, I got a job with the oil drilling company, just to make some changes, living and working on the land.”

Perhaps not surprisingly, like other ’70s Aussie classics Eagle Rock and Stumblin’ In, The Dingoes’ 1973 song should feature prominently in this “dusty” tale of devotion and doggy-do from a little australian wrestler.

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Red Dog is now available to stream on Netflix.

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After all, this true-story-inspired crowd-pleaser is set in one of the westernmost points of “lucky country”: Dampier, Western Australia. Home to the Mermaid Motor Hotel, Hamersley Iron and migrant workers from around the world, in 1971 it was rougher, hotter, brighter and redder than it is today, and a lonely town where men were men (even if they fancied a nightspot). weaving), one did not work without a hat and dogs of a certain type could do it well.

Wandering around here came Red Dog, a kelpie-cattle dog cross. He is said to have taught the townspeople about independence, a generous heart and fellowship, earning him membership in the Dampier Salts Sports and Social Club and Transport Union and a bank account. But while some claim he saved their lives or helped them find true love, there were those who would rather have seen him from behind, or worse.

Despite an overabundance of walking socks, Stubbies and Jockey Y-fronts and some very complicated special effects, Red Dog still packs a lot of Ocker charm.

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Despite an overabundance of walking socks, Stubbies and Jockey Y-fronts and some very complicated special effects, Red Dog still packs a lot of Ocker charm.

A huge hit in its native Australia upon its initial release in 2011, Red Dog is a small-town, big-country movie that longs to be the next Muriel or Priscilla, but instead feels more like a throwback to Crocodile Dundee or ( shudder) Kangaroo Jack. That’s mostly due to the stellar Hollywood presence of Josh Lucas (Sweet Home Alabama).

It just seems wrong for the key character to transform into an American (he’s partially Maori in the Louis de Bernieres book he’s adapted from and supposedly a much more troublesome figure in real life) just to sell a few tickets in the States.

Other stereotypes and archetypes abound, from the talkative Italian immigrant to the humorless, cat-loving trailer park owners and the fun-filled, brighter-than-white Australian outback girl.

Despite this, an overabundance of walking socks, Stubbies and Jockey Y-fronts, and some really cheesy special effects, Red Dog still boasts plenty of Ocker charm, thanks to an eclectic cast of character actors, including a mustachioed Noah Taylor. (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) and the late great Bill Hunter (Muriel’s Wedding) in his final performance. Also look out for our very own Keisha Castle-Hughes as a vet in a scene-stealing cameo.

Then there’s Koko the dog, who is likely to steal a lot of hearts with his “pedigree” portrayal in this Forrest Gump Meets The Littlest Hobo tale that’s tinged with tragedy (think Greyfriars Bobby, rather than Lassie when it comes to of his exploits)

Red Dog is now available to stream on Netflix.

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