How Much is that Doggie in the Window? (Film Review: “Hachi: A Dog’s Tale”)

This is the kind of movie where you want the Kleenex close by. . . and I’m talking to the guys right now. Hachi: a dog’s tale won’t have you crying the ‘uglies’ but its impossible to finish this picture with a dry eye. And maybe that’s because the story is actually true.

SnapShot Plot

Loyalty, Love, Devotion. I wonder why these words so easily describe Man’s Best Friend rather than Man himself? Philosophical quandary aside, this is a simple movie that’s easy to watch and  – although a bit short on plot – a very emotionally tender and uplifting family film which will appeal to all ages. Richard Gere is a professor in a small town, happily married, with a lovely wife and caring daughter. He commutes by train every day to his job teaching music at a local college, when one cold evening he steps off the train to find an impossibly adorable little puppy staring up at him expectantly from the platform. There begins a love story for the ages…a species jumping bro-mance, if you will.



Parting Shot

Famous Swedish director, Lasse Hallström (My Life as a Dog; Cider House Rules; Chocolat; What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?, among others) based this movie on a 1987 Japanese film which told the true life story of a dog so beloved by the entire country that not only did they erect a bronze statue in his honor (which he was still alive to commemorate) but then rebuilt it after the country destroyed it for its metal during WW II. In fact, the dog’s date of death was declared a national day of mourning.

Hachi: a dog’s tale is widely available to stream on both Netflix and YouTube, as well as Crackle and (I’m sure) a few other online sites.

 Norma’s Streaming Picks is proud to announce squatters rights on a fantastic site for Baby Boomers, Midcentury/Modern as well as right here at home. I invite you to go there for more great content!

 YouTube Trailer Courtesy of:

For a short, interesting article from the Huffington Post clearing up the mystery as to exactly how the real Hachiko passed away in 1935, go to:


  • Norma says:

    So glad you enjoyed it, even though it made you cry! Me too, but as moved as I was by the story, it was an archival photo I discovered of the real Hachiko on his deathbed, surrounded by a group of Japanese civilians and police officers reverently praying over him that really destroyed me. I hesitated to add it to the bottom of the post, as I thought it might upset some viewers, so I included that other one showing Hachiko in his later, more street dog days. It seems that many cultures have celebrated their true-life canine legends, which only confirms for me that the bond between us is a sacred one.
    Thanks for your comment, Lesley, and keep watching!

  • Lesley says:

    Norma I literally cannot rewatch this movie, it made me cry so much! But I recommend it to everyone I know! Amazing story and such a sweet movie. Great choice!

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