Episode #73: White Fang
Listen to Episode 73 of the Podcast here while you enjoy the show notes.
SUMMARY - In White Fang, Jack (played by Ethan Hawke) travels to Alaska during the gold rush in order to take over his father’s claim in hopes of striking it rich. He enlists the help of a couple seasoned travelers to navigate the frigid landscape and stay away from the dangerous wildlife. Meanwhile, a wolf that’s also part dog tries to make it out in the wild all alone.
Screenplay by Jeanne Rosenberg, Nick Thiel, and David Fallon; Directed by Randal Kleiser, and released on January 18, 1991.
Like others we've seen, the early moments show period accurate photographs, maps and potentially real newspapers to set the scene of the gold rush.
Very quickly they show how treacherous the journey is
But we get to see it from home and enjoy the cinematography away from the frozen landscapes.
White Fang's story starts off as a side story with his mother taking care of him as an outcast
But we also see him grow up and cross paths with our protagonist a couple times.
The animal acting in this is absolutely incredible and emotional.
Jed played adult White Fang and Bart the Bear also got a role.
But many other animals appeared, since these thugs turned White Fang into a dogfighter.
A lot of that action was done through quick cuts or shots like this that obscure the actual visuals
The movie can be disturbing and dark sometimes. You have a dead body flying out of a coffin at one point
But it's all about the relationship between Jack and White Fang and how they eventually help each other
It was incredibly well-made and we can't get over how amazing the animal performances were in this action-packed movie.
Awards Talk: None to speak of this time.
TRUE CRIME & POP CULTURE
This week we don't have any true crime but we do talk about the endangered status of wolves in the world and briefly touch on the indigenous tribe shown.
Endangered Wolf Center
Alaska Athabascan Tribe
We also talk a little about the gold rush and how gold was tested for authenticity.
Gold Discovery in the Yukon
We skip TV as this was the same day as "The Terror Within II" but we do cover the Billboard Bottom 5 Songs for the week of January 19, 1991
100. Sure Lookin’ - Donnie Osmond
99. Close to Me - The Cure
98. Think - Information Society
97. BBD (I Thought It Was Me) - Bel Biv Devoe
96. Jealousy - The Adventures of Stevie V
RANKINGS & RATINGS
Nikki 1-5 star scale - 4 out of 5
Jon 0-4 star scale - 3 out of 4
Would you watch it again? - The animals make the movie and this is the best animal acting we've seen so far in this podcast. Yes, we would certainly watch this again as it was very well done all around, but we would also be curious to see some of the other adaptations of "White Fang" to see how they might compare to this Disney production.
If you want to watch White Fang, as of this recording in July 2022, it’s available on Disney +, Digital Rental, VHS, DVD. Check your local listings.
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