Film: Big Jake
Director: George Sherman
Performers: John Wayne, Richard Boone, Patrick Wayne, Christopher Mitchum, Maureen O’Hara, Dog* (uncredited)
Breed featured: Rough Collie
Production information: Batjac / Cinema Center Films: 1971 (USA)
“Big Jake” McCandle (John Wayne) sets off to recover his kidnapped grandson with the help of two incompetent sons and a dog named… Dog.
A nice, shaggy Collie out of the Weatherwax (Lassie) kennel.
Does what it says on label.
Including dying to protect the precious kid that nobody else really has a reason to care about. But not before taking a big ol’ chomp out of one bad guy’s arm in a carefully choreographed sneak attack.
You know sometimes how movie dogs are so well-trained, their performance doesn’t even look natural? That applies to several of the human actors in this film as well.
Anyway, speaking of dy(e)ing, it appeared that there were actually a couple different collies used in this film, though it could just be a semi-permanent dye job fading and reappearing between shoots. You can see from my screencaps that sometimes Dog the collie looks significantly darker than others, initially appearing almost black.
I thought they might have switched them because the darker Collie appeared to be better around horses than the others. But that’s just my conjecture tossed out there to swirl about with other internet conjectures, all unverified because the dog was left off the cast, despite the significance of his character.