A dog dying in a movie always brings the tears.
The goal of this series is to show that being "manly" and being disconnected with your emotions do not necessarily go hand-in-hand. While the approach to these articles is one of comedy and satire, the emotional core of these movies is very valid. Manly movies make guys cry, for example:
Dog Death Movies
Not all men own dogs. Heck, not all men even like dogs. That doesn't stop our culture from assigning dogs as a manly pet, while a cat ownership is delegated to crazy cat ladies. It's a generalization, it's cliché, but we do it. It does make sense that dogs are a man's pet, as we and they have much in common. Dogs are loyal, simple, will eat until they feel sick, and sometimes they smell like feet. Cats, on the other hand, are secretive, confusing, exotic, and do what they want. If a cat dies in a movie, it's generally because someone is evil for killing them, or the cat was evil to begin with. If a dog dies in a movie, shut that shit down because this mother just got emotional. Here's a list of five movies where we collectively sobbed for our fallen canine friends.
The film came out in 1957, it's barely through the "Films are now in color!" door, yet when I mentioned movies where the dog dies this came up first in your mind.
Don't lie, it did.
A Disney film for no reason at all other than to remind the world that Disney loves to kill your family, the plot is basically "Fall in love with this dog, and then watch it die." I don't have to work very hard to pick the point that makes us cry (uh, when Old Yeller's owner has to shoot him because he's got rabies) but the whole film has a timeless nostalgia that refuses to go away. Even if you haven't seen the film, it's a little upsetting to know that somewhere in someone's movie library there's a film about a boy who loves his dog and then has to shoot him.
Why Disney? Wasn't killing Bambi's mom, Bell's Mom, Snow White's mom, Ariel's Mom.....enough?
I'm not sure what is worse: the fact that the child had to kill his own dog, or the fact that this is the movie that told several generations of children that there's a situation where you might have to kill your dog. This was the first dead dog ever, real or fictional, for a whole lot of people. This movie started the dead dog device.