Wednesday, August 29th, 2012


J R Ackersley was a British writer and editor who
started working with the BBC in London the year after its founding in 1927.  He published many emerging poets and writers
who became influential in Great Britain, and later wrote his own highly
successful memoir. He was also openly gay, a rarity in his time when the law
forbade homosexuality and gay men were socially ostracized.
He always wanted a find a ‘special friend’ to share
his life but this was something he never achieved, but in 1946 he obtained a German
shepherd dog that became the object of all his affection, and the one real love
in his life.  JR wrote a best-selling
account of his relationship with his dog Queenie in 1956, which was made into a
movie in 2010.  (The dog’s name was
changed to Tulip to avoid obvious innuendos).
It’s an exquisite hand-drawn animated movie that is a sheer joy to watch.  A tender love story
between this articulate middle-aged man and his dog, which is peppered with a
whole litany of eccentric british characters that J.R. deals with trying to
make Tulip as happy as she can be.  It’s
very much an adult’s story told for adults’ ….and not just because of the
minute detail of Tulip’s toilet habits or her attempts to get pregnant.
Mr Ackersley was by all accounts a fascinating man in
real life who mixed with the likes of E M Forster and a gay Indian Maharaja and
whilst not a hint of this detail is in the movie, it does go towards explaining
his wonderful dry wit, which pervades throughout the telling of this story.
It’s narrated by the wonderful sonorous tines of
Christopher Plummer as JR and with Isabella Rossellini and Lynn Redgrave too (the film
was the last Ms. Redgrave worked on before her untimely death and is dedicated
to her memory)
If you a dog lover, you won’t be able to miss this
one.  And evidently all Brits are according
to J.R. as we are unable to love each other we English turn naturally to dogs.  Really?

Now available on DVD.


Posted by queerguru  at  03:04


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