The Cave Of The Yellow Dog review

Why you can trust GamesRadar+ Our experts review games, movies and tech over countless hours, so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about our reviews policy.

Girl finds dog. Girl takes dog home. Girl’s family thinks dog will bring them bad luck. Um, and that’s about it... What you have to bear in mind when you watch this pseudo-doc is that it’s not really about the dog; it’s about Mongolia’s nomadic tribespeople and the way they live their lives. We see cheese being pressed and cut, candles being lit for ancestral spirits, dung being collected for fuel... all terribly worthy as a record of an endangered way of life, but it’s hardly a thrilling premise for a movie. It’s also paced so languidly by director Byambasuren Davaa (The Story Of The Weeping Camel) that it’s only saved by the central performances, which are as natural as the landscape. As the dog’s best friend, adorable six-year-old Nansal Batchuluun will steal your heart away with her cute determination. Oh, and the dog’s not bad, either.

The Total Film team are made up of the finest minds in all of film journalism. They are: Editor Jane Crowther, Deputy Editor Matt Maytum, Reviews Ed Matthew Leyland, News Editor Jordan Farley, and Online Editor Emily Murray. Expect exclusive news, reviews, features, and more from the team behind the smarter movie magazine.