On a Short Leash

Have you been taking your dog for granted? When is the last time you serenaded him with Cat Stevens’s ode to Fido, “I Love My Dog”? What are you getting your four-legged best friend for Valentine’s Day? If you haven’t even considered these pressing questions, you need a refresher on man-beast love. (If you have, on the other hand, you may need a different kind of help.) Thankfully, there’s an endearing solution that veers far from bestiality: My Dog Tulip is an animated film for adults about a man’s true and deep love for his dog. (Note: “film for adults” is different from “adult film,” you sicko.) The movie is based on J.R. Ackerley’s memoir of the same name, a work Truman Capote called “one of the greatest books ever written by anybody in the world.” It follows Ackerley’s experiences with Tulip, an adopted beautiful but willful young German Shepherd, and his ever-evolving awe at his charge as he observes the dog’s split personalities: one loyal and heroic, the other defiant to the point of biting, barking, and shitting all over London. Beyond describing an intimate canine-human bond, the film gives insight into the strangeness of relationships of all types, making it interesting even for non-pet owners.
Fri., Feb. 4, 7 p.m., 2011
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Camille Lamb Guzman is a journalist who writes on wellness, travel, and culture. She is also finishing a book of creative nonfiction.

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