Although this is an animated film, In hard drawn graphics, It is NOT suitable for young children as the subject matter is of a disturbing nature, Parental Guidance is advised.
Based on writer Richard Adams' follow up to his own Watership Down, The Plague Dogs follows the story of two dogs that escape from a research laboratory and try to survive in the wild north of England's Lake District. The film is a dark satire on animal testing with a subtle political commentary that questions the British Government and the media. Their adventures lead them to a cunning fox called The Tod, whose guidance isn't always as helpful as it seems.
Rowf (a labrador-mix) and Snitter (a smooth fox terrier) are two of many dogs used for experimental purposes at an animal research facility in the Lake District of north-western England. Eager to escape the tortures of life inside the facility, an escape is managed. Initially relieved and eager to experience their new freedom the dogs are soon faced, not only with the realities of life in the wild, but with another more terrifying realization — they are being hunted by their former captors.
Video release history
There are two versions of the film: An 86 minute version and a 103 minute version. The only country that offered the full length film on DVD was Australia until it was released in the UK on 7 January 2008.
The original VHS release of the full theatrical cut of the film was released by Thorn Productions in 1982. Only around 8,000 copies of this version were made.
In 1983, Embassy Pictures ordered cuts to be made to the film. This shortened cut was premiered in 1983. In 1984, it was given a limited release across the United States by Charter Productions. Strangely, the VHS cover states that the film is 99 minutes long.
In 2002, Anchor Bay Entertainment released a Region 2 DVD version of the film, but it contained the US cut. Soon afterwards, the Dutch budget label, Indies Home Entertainment, released a Region 2 disc which also contained the US cut but includes forced Dutch subtitles. This DVD has been out of print since November 2005. In 2004, a DVD version of the film was released by Trinity Home Entertainment. Unable to obtain the full cut, they settled with using the truncated US version.
In 2005, Australian distributor Big Sky Media released the full theatrical cut of the film as well as the truncated version on Region 4 DVD (they also released the full theatrical cut of Watership Down), sourced from Martin Rosen's private print. This is probably the only full cut of the film in existence aside from the rare Thorn VHS and the original master. The same print was later released on Region 2 DVD in the UK by Optimum Releasing in 2008.
Many missing scenes are considered completely harmless and were only removed to reduce running time, however, one scene from the full length film was removed because of its shocking content. After a scene of Ackland falling to death from a steep crag whilst trying to shoot the dogs, a helicopter flies over the snow-covered crags and valleys, cutting to a middle to close-up shot of Ackland's body, ripped to shreds. It is clear that the dogs have eaten the corpse. This scene is a depiction of an event from the book.
*** VIDEO INFO ***
Input Type : XVID(GVC)
Input Size : 512 x 384
Output Type : YUY2
Output Size : 512 x 384
FrameRate(Frame/sec) : 0.00 (25.00)