Challenge to Lassie

  • U
  • Richard Thorpe (1949)
  • US
  • 75 min
Film Review
Reviewed By
3 out of 5

This is a major character role for the movies' best-loved pre-Beethoven pooch, as the famed collie retreats to late-19th-century Edinburgh from the great American outdoors to play a faithful dog who keeps returning to a churchyard where her master is buried. If that sounds familiar, it's Disney's 1960 film Greyfriars Bobby, which was an uncredited remake of this 1949 MGM film, also featuring Donald Crisp. In the later version Crisp starred as the cemetery keeper, whereas here he's Lassie's master. Lassie is utterly splendid in the lead, and the late 1940s Technicolor is ravishing. Humans Crisp, Edmund Gwenn and Hollywood's British colony all do sterling work, but it's the dog's movie and rightly so.

Plot Summary

Drama starring Edmund Gwenn and Donald Crisp. After the death of her master, the loyal Lassie faithfully attends his grave. But her vigil at the cemetery does not meet with a policeman's approval.

Cast and crew


John Traill
Edmund Gwenn
"Jock" Gray
Donald Crisp
Susan Brown
Geraldine Brooks
Sergeant Davie
Reginald Owen
James Brown
Alan Webb
William Traill
Ross Ford
Sir Charles Loring
Henry Stephenson
Lord Provost
Alan Napier
Mrs MacFarland
Sara Allgood
Edmund Breon
Dr Lee
Arthur Shields


Richard Thorpe

Other Information

Theatrical distributor: 
Available on video