Togo is a Disney original movie that is coming to Disney+ on December 20th, 2019. This spoiler free review of Togo is 100% my own opinions.
Togo is an original movie based on a true story coming soon to Disney+. It perfectly expresses the bond between man and dog. I was hooked within the first few minutes, and instantly fell in love with Togo. William Dafoe puts on a great performance, per usual, as Leonhard Seppala and I truly felt his love for Togo through the screen. Even if you aren’t a dog lover, you will be after you watch this movie.
Togo starts out with the knowledge that a really bad storm is coming, but the town needs someone to make a serum run. Leonhard is the best dog sled driver around, so they look to him. He is leery because of the fact that his caribou dog, Togo, fears the storm. And when animals fear the storm, man should as well.
When he accepts the job of going, his wife warns him that taking Togo surely means the death of the dog. That is the moment I prepared myself for the worst. It was that instant I felt that it would mean the end of the dog, and I knew already I would be a sobbing mess before the film was over. But is that what happened? You will have to watch to find out! Read on for my spoiler free review of Togo.
Togo is set in 1925 Alaska, and it couldn’t be a more beautiful movie — inside and out. From the visuals of a raging and angry storm, to the Alaskan landscape, this movie is stunning. I have always wanted to visit Alaska, now so more than ever. Even though there were moments that were absolutely terrifying with the wind and snow, the beauty still shines through.
Togo is filled with drama and action. As Leonhard races through the frozen tundra, there were many moments where I was on the edge of my seat. I assumed he would make it, and that Togo would not, but I did not know if my assumptions were correct. And every time they seemed in danger, my heart raced. I realized fairly quickly that I was very invested in Leonhard, Togo, and their journey. All I wanted, more than anything, was for them to arrive home, together, safe and sound.
What Leonhard did was extremely selfless. He went out in the middle of a horrible storm, knowing he might not come home, to get medicine to save his community. The kids and families needed him and Togo. And they gave their all to get through trial after trail — including a run over ice that had me standing up and pacing while I watched it.
The Bond Between Man & Dog
Throughout the journey, we see Togo’s full story, and it was more heartwarming than I could have ever expected. We are shown how Leonhard almost gave up on Togo when he was a weak pup, but his wife helped convince him otherwise. Time and time again, he almost turned his back on Togo. In fact, he even tried to give him away once, but Togo was returned.
The movie goes on to show just how the bond between Togo and his owner was developed — and I loved every second of it. William Dafoe does an excellent job of showing the audience how man and dog can bond — even when man fights it. At one point Leonhard talks about he how he tried to give Togo away – twice – and the heartbreak in his eyes over that broke my heart a little bit.
One of my favorite things about Togo is how it flashes back and forth between the present and the past. Throughout the film we watch Leonhard’s journey, but also scenes that show us how he came to love Togo. Even if you aren’t a dog lover, you are sure to fall in love with Togo, just like Leonhard did. The fact that this is an untold true story really got to me. I think that is part of the reason I was so much more invested in it than I expected to be.
I won’t tell you if they make it or not — and what Togo’s fate is. But I will tell you that there were several moments I teared up during Togo. And it made me love my pups just a little bit more.
An Original Movie starring Willem Dafoe and Julianne Nicholson, “Togo” is the untold true story set in the winter of 1925 that treks across the treacherous terrain of the Alaskan tundra for an exhilarating and uplifting adventure that will test the strength, courage and determination of one man, Leonhard Seppala, and his lead sled dog, Togo.
The poignant and emotional adventure debuts on Disney+ on Dec. 20, 2019.
Thank you for reading my Togo review, be sure to stream it on Disney+!