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Back to God's Country opens on an idyllic note at the peaceful Canadian mountain home where the innocent child-of-nature Dolores LeBeau lives with her doting father Baptiste LeBeau and a legion of animal friends. When a handsome naturalist Peter Burke stops in at their mountain paradise he is charmed by Dolores and the pair are soon announcing their engagement to Baptiste. But the always changeable mood of Back to God's Country suddenly shifts from a bucolic love story to a genuine nightmare. A murderous criminal Rydal hiding out in the mountains and traveling with his half-breed sidekick, spies Dolores skinny-dipping in a brook and vows to "have" her. Back to God's Country was based on a typically sensational James Oliver Curwood short story "Wapi, the Walrus." Curwood was known for a bizarre fiction formula in which decent women were threatened with rape, only to be rescued from a fate worse than death by a protective dog. Curwood's prototypical woman-beast storyline was also used in Back to God's Country, with Dolores finding an abused, vicious black dog Wapi, her only companion and helpmate in the barren winter landscape where she and Peter are trapped. Dolores and Wapi form a bond that transforms this fascinating, strange story yet again, from a tale of human evil, to an oddly touching story of the loving relationship between a woman and a dog.
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