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MOVIE REVIEW : Piglet ‘Gordy’ Warms Way Into Hearts

TIMES STAFF WRITER

“Gordy” is a sweet little movie, ideal for youngsters and easy to take for parents, about the adventures of a pig so adorable that he could turn us all into vegetarians. Gordy is one of six piglets who live happily with their parents at the idyllic Meadowbrook Farm. Hard times, however, have hit its owner, and Gordy narrowly escapes being shipped “up North” for auction with the rest of his family. What’s Gordy to do but to take off to try to find his relatives?

Director Mark Lewis, who has a crucial light touch, and writer Leslie Stevens, working from a story by Jay Sommers and Dick Chevillat, skillfully anthropomorphize Gordy and his animal friends, who are capable of speech but are understood mainly by children, who have the patience and credulity, also the “pureness of heart,” to listen to and understand them.

Gordy lucks out by crossing paths with a pretty girl (Kristy Young) and her widowed father (Doug Stone), who are country-Western singers on tour. When they perform at a garden party at the Arkansas governor’s mansion, Gordy saves a little rich boy (Michael Roescher) from drowning, becoming an instant media hero.

There’s a silly, poorly motivated development in which an evil PR man (James Donadio) for Roescher’s tycoon grandfather means to do away with Gordy. But this contrivance does propel the plot, and most youngsters aren’t likely to be bothered by its flimsiness.

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Newcomers Young and Roescher are appealing, the adult actors competent enough for the circumstances, and the entire film is well-crafted. Animal lovers of all ages should be delighted with “Gordy,” which also boasts a number of pleasant musical numbers and performers.

* MPAA rating: G . Times guidelines: This is a family film suitable for all ages.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

‘Gordy’ Michael Roescher: Hanky Royce Doug Stone: Luke MacAllister Kristy Young: Jinnie Sue MacAllister James Donadio: Gilbert Sipes A Miramax Films presentation. Director Mark Lewis. Producer Sybil Robson. Executive producer Leslie Stevens. Screenplay by Stevens from a story by Jay Sommers and Dick Chevillat. Cinematographer Richard Michalak. Editor Lindsay Frazer. Costumes Barcie White. Music Charles Fox. Production designer Philip Messina. Running time: 1 hour, 30 minutes.

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* In general release throughout Southern California.


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