Set in Bavaria, South Germany, Lassie Come Home is the story of 12-year-old Jo (Nico Marischka) and his beloved dog, Lassie.
When Jo and his parents can no longer live in their house, they’re forced to move into a rental apartment. Unfortunately, the landlady doesn’t like dogs, so they temporarily place their collie, Lassie, with family friends, Mr Springer (Matthias Habich) and his granddaughter Bella (Bella Bading). Mr Springer and Bella take Lassie on a trip to North Germany.
Missing her family, Lassie escapes, but she doesn’t know she’s hundreds of kilometres away from home. Lassie makes her way through the German countryside, while Bella and Jo embark on a frantic search for her.
Family; adventure; animal hero; friendship
Lassie Come Home has some mild violence. For example, a former employee of Mr Springer wants to earn the reward for finding Lassie. He threatens Lassie with pepper spray, but accidentally sprays it at himself. He runs into a tree and faints.
Alcohol, drugs and other substances
Lassie Come Home shows some use of substances, including when the landlady drinks a beer while watching TV.
Nudity and sexual activity
Lassie Come Home has some mild coarse language in this movie, including ‘you damn dog’, ‘idiot’, ‘dumb dog’ and ‘stupid cow’.
Ideas to discuss with your children
Lassie Come Home is the latest version of the adventures of rough collie Lassie. This canine character first became famous and popular with the 1943 classic of the same title, starring a young Elizabeth Taylor. Generations of children have since followed Lassie’s adventures in numerous movies and a successful TV series.
This time, the story is set in modern-day Germany, but it still focuses on the deep friendship between a child and a loyal dog, a painful separation, and the desperate efforts to get Lassie home. Although the movie has some peril, scary and violent scenes, and distressing interpersonal drama, this content is very mild. Children are unlikely to be very upset by these scenes, and more likely to focus on the funny animal scenes instead.
Australian children might also enjoy the beautiful German scenery. The movie has been dubbed from German into English, so it should also be easy for them to understand.
These are the main messages from Lassie Come Home:
- People and animals can achieve extraordinary things then they set their minds to it.
- Family and friendship are the most important things in life.
Values in this movie that you could reinforce with your children include friendship, perseverance in the face of difficulties and challenges, and courage.
Lassie Come Home could also give you the chance to talk with your children about real-life issues like whether running away from problems can help you sort them out. For example, Bella’s father and grandfather don’t face the deaths of their loved ones in constructive ways. They both try to avoid pain, but inadvertently create more hardship for themselves and others. Fortunately, they learn their lessons by the end of the story and start making better choices.