Lassie Come Home (1943) - Rotten Tomatoes

Lassie Come Home (1943)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Female dogs tend to shed while in heat; this is why all the collies who've played doggy heroine Lassie in the movies have actually been well-disguised males. A magnificent animal named Pal was the screen's first Lassie in 1943's Lassie Come Home. Set in Yorkshire during the first World War, the film gets under way when the poverty-stricken parents (Donald Crisp, Elsa Lanchester) of young Joe Carraclough (Roddy McDowall) are forced to sell his beloved Lassie. While her new master, the duke of Rudling (Nigel Bruce), is pleasant enough, Lassie prefers the company of Joe and repeatedly escapes. Even when cared for by the duke's affectionate granddaughter, Priscilla (Elizabeth Taylor), Lassie insists upon heading back to her original home. This time, however, the trip is much longer, and Lassie must depend upon the kindness of strangers, notably farmers Dally (Dame May Whitty) and Dan'l Fadden (Ben Webster) and handyman Rowlie (Edmund Gwenn). Based on the novel by Eric Knight (originally serialized in The Saturday Evening Post), Lassie Come Home was released quite some time after Knight's death. Like all the Lassie sequels turned out by MGM between 1943 and 1951, Lassie Come Home was lensed in Technicolor.
Action & Adventure , Classics , Drama , Kids & Family
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Roddy McDowall
as Joe Carraclough
Donald Crisp
as Sam Carraclough
Edmund Gwenn
as Rowlie
Nigel Bruce
as Duke of Rudling
Elsa Lanchester
as Mrs. Carraclough
Elizabeth Taylor
as Priscilla
Ben Webster
as Dan'l Fadden
Alec Craig
as Snickers
John Rogers
as Buckles
Alan Napier
as Andrew
Roy Parry
as Butcher
Howard Davies
as Cobbler
John Power
as Miner
Pal the Dog
as Lassie
Nelson Leigh
as Teacher
May Beatty
as Fat Woman
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Critic Reviews for Lassie Come Home

All Critics (16) | Top Critics (5)

Lassie celebrates nothing more profound than the simple and timeworn relationship of a boy and a dog. It dramatizes the uncomplicated goodness of an animal in a complicated human world.

Full Review… | March 23, 2011
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

Lassie emerges as nice entertainment enhanced by color photography and good scenic shots.

Full Review… | July 22, 2008
Top Critic

Nobody made this heart-warming fluff better than MGM.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

A thorough delight.

Full Review… | March 25, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

The classic 1943 canine weepie about a collie who crosses most of Britain to return to the little boy who loves her.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

This was understandably inspiring to wartime audiences and actually still holds up as a heartwarming story with a very decent cast.

Full Review… | March 23, 2011
Empire Magazine

Audience Reviews for Lassie Come Home

Lassie come home 1943 Starts off in Edenbourow England. They sold Lassie for money and could not afford money to pay for food for Lassie. Lassie dug herself out first time and second time jumped over the fens. Lassie to go to Scotland for a dog show. Heinz the dog handler does not like Lassie. They go to Northern Scotland very mountainous landscape. At 4:00 P.M. Lassie would always want out for meeting for school. Lassie encounters small traveling wagon trick show where small dog named Tuts does tricks like pick up different color rings or jumping through rings. Two burglars have a fight and knock out and kill Tuts in the fight with clubs. I think this film is better because it deals with loss and there is an evident risk where we see the consequences. Lassie jumps out of a two story building and gets a limped foot when trying to escape the dog catcher. Lassie is starving refuses to eat soup. I feel like the story and characters I am invested in and people die that you care about so story is stronger. The ending links and sets up to the next film Son of Lassie.


Lassie Come Home has lovable characters (especially the endearing old man near the end), remarkable cinematography, fine performances, solid score and heartwarming moments. It has a standard, simple and predictable plot which is pretty much stretched as far as it could have been stretched, but that ride is worth a watch due to warm tone, fine adventures and effervescent characters you meet along the way and it is an all around fun little flick. It is one of the most famous dog movies and, while nowhere near as good as Old Yeller, it still is a nice and fun film in its own right.

David Lazovic
David Lazovic

Lassie Come Home? No, Lassie please leave! That's the real problem in this movie, Lassie wont stay away. The family is too poor to keep the dog, so they sell it, but it keeps coming back home. This really got on my nerves, not only that , but the scenes with Lassie fighting bears in the woods so he could get back home were so crazy and ridiculous that I hated this movie. I did like Roddy McDowall in the movie, though, he was good, so I gave the movie more stars than it deserved.

Aj V
Aj V

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