The Yearling is the usual story of a boy and his pet though his pet happens to be a dear. This is not some sweet story evidenced by its rather harsh ending. The film has many admirable elements. The technical elements are memorable particularly in the stylized realization of Florida in pioneer times. Claude Jarman Jr. gives a fine leading performance as the boy. Jane Wyman also does well actually despite having the thankless role as an extremely cold mother. Gregory Peck though sticks out like sore thumb the entire film with his awkward turn as struggles to speak the dialect of his character. The story also seems somewhat unsure of its tone at times as it has some extremes that hinder the natural flow of the story. It still works in the end despite some obvious flaws.