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Lawn Dogs [DVD] [1997]

Sam Rockwell , Mischa Barton , John Duigan    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
Price: 5.60 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Sam Rockwell, Mischa Barton, Kathleen Quinan
  • Directors: John Duigan
  • Format: Dolby, PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Strawberry Media
  • DVD Release Date: 14 Feb 2011
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004FN7JAM
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 57,866 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



No review of Lawn Dogs can adequately describe this extraordinary movie, nor can the title or any simple synopsis. In fact, there's no way of knowing what Lawn Dogs is really about until the very end when the last 90-minutes takes on a whole new significance.

The basic story follows the formation and fruition of a simple friendship. Devon (astounding newcomer Mischa Barton) is a 10-year-old girl born to glamour magazine identikit parents who live in the plush US suburban Camelot Gardens Estate. Trent (Sam Rockwell) is a 20-something lawnmower man whom everyone considers trash and who lives in a forest trailer. As secret friends they fill the holes in one another's lives. She has no other friends because she thinks "other kids smell like TV". It's all perfectly sweet and innocent. But naturally there's no way the uptight neighbourhood would perceive it that way. A creeping sense of doom begins to overtake events; but it is where this seemingly obvious tale twists at the end that makes the community's darker quirks a revelation.

On the DVD: Lawn Dogs on disc comes in a 16:9 transfer that retains the superb cinematography of endlessly stretching flat horizons. The three-channel sound is equally of benefit to a subtle bluesy score. Regrettably the only extra is a trailer. As a winner at numerous International Film Festivals, this picture really deserved something more. --Paul Tonks

Product Description

United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital Stereo ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Interactive Menu, Scene Access, SYNOPSIS: Acclaimed drama from director John Duigan, starring Sam Rockwell and Mischa Barton. Ten-year-old Devon Stockard (Barton) leads a lonely existence in her wealthy parents' high-security suburban complex. Her only friend is Trent Burns (Rockwell), a 22-year-old drop-out who works as a 'lawn dog', mowing the lawns of the locals for a living. However, Trent is reviled and looked down upon by those he works for, and his friendship with Devon looks set to get him into a lot of trouble. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Montreal World Film Festival, Stockholm Film Festival, ...Lawn Dogs

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a gem 1 Aug 2004
I was watching TV late one night and happened upon this little gem.
I have been a fan of Sam Rockwell for a few years now and so was really happy to find him on Channel 4 in the wee hours, and I liked it so much I bought it from Amazon.
Lawn Dogs is, as with most of Rockwell's films, an overlooked and underrated piece of art. The story is unusual (a little holey at times but on the main it was quirky enough to pull it off) and a little unsettling, but all in all I highly recommend it to adults who miss magic in cinema and to those who really enjoy great good acting with bite and verve.
Micha Barton (now all growed up and in the OC on E4) is such a brilliant actress, holding her own against some seriously heavyweight performers. Charming and delicate, dangerous and eccentric, her charactor's reaching out to Sam's 'lawn dog' is both understandable and heavily burdened with the responsibility that this has to be done right or it'll be horrible. Well it isn't horrible, it's charming and a love story in the truest sense of the word.
See this movie. See All of Sam Rockwell's movies - he's a small man with a GIANT talent.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars lawn dogs 21 April 2004
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
really good film.....looks quite uninteresting but is actually amazing andvery thought was on tv a few months back n i watched it andhave been looking for the video ever since, but nowhere seems to have itfor some reason...EVERYONE should have it...immense
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
By Jason Parkes #1 HALL OF FAME
Format:VHS Tape
The popular (and rather dull) argument following the success of American Beauty (Sam Mendes) was that it had usurped the superior Happiness (Todd Solondz). The implication being that Solondz's tedious slab of misanthropy, that failed to match his previous work Welcome to the Dollhouse, had been robbed of both audience and acclaim by American Beauty. This was emphasised by Solondz's childish references to American Beauty in the messy Storytelling. The film that both American Beauty and Happiness cheated out of audience & acclaim is this film- Lawn Dogs (1997).
Written by Naomi Wallace, it tells the story of a friendship between a 10-year old outsider girl and a young lawn dog- who is also an outsider (though from a lower class). The film looks at the notions of class in American society by focusing on the gated community of Camelot Gardens, where Devon (the girl) lives and where Trent (the lawn dog) comes to work.
The film perhaps tackles too many issues, an agent orange/gulf syndrome disease is tacked on to themes of paranoia, paedophilia,access to firearms ,adultery,repressed homosexuality, crime ,market place viability, mob rule etc. This film may have suffered from a lack of promotion as it touches on too many wounds prevalent to Western society. Love the scene where the suburban families have a barbie to images of the Gulf War or the notion that the worst glasses in Devon's house are the best glasses in Trent's mobile home. Other wonderful scenes occur- from the nude dive to Dwight Yoakam (not unlike The Swimmer)to the Badlands-style panaroma of fields to the "I'll show you my scar" scene. Not forgetting the dreamlike shot of Devon's nightdress floating into the night- there are some very David Lynch moments here amid a political and mythological discourse.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AN ABSOLUTE TREASURE! UNMISSABLE... 13 Jun 2004
LD is an enchanting story of isolation & friendship, brought to us from Austalian John Duigan, director of 1991's masterpiece The Year My voice Broke, & 1989's Dead Calm. The story centers around 10 year old 'new to the neighbourhood' Devon, & 20 something 'trailer trash' lawn mower boy Trent, set against a magical & quite surreal backdrop of American middle class suburbia. The weighty & wide ranginig themes touched on, (class/ social politics, sexual repression & hypocrisy, paedophillia, violence & media induced paranoia / sensationalism, & lastly bigotry), are interwoven not only cohesively, but with great insight style & beauty. Capitalist values within a sort of 'redneck mentality', sums up the residents of the ironically named Camelot Gardens, an exclusive 'well to do' housing complex, where Devon has just moved to with her somewhat apathetic mother, & status obsessed father, who states, "the way I see it is- you got people that mow lawns & you got people that own em- & they aint never the same sorta people.." Stifled & lonely in the sterile environment, Devon lives in her own fairy tale world, filled with the obligatory fantasy elements of magic & witches. Her surpressed lust for life is let loose one afternoon as she ventures outside the high walls of the tightly secured & patrolled 'kingdom', with its uniformed houses, lawns, flower beds, sprinklers etc, all magnificently displayed in wide angle vistas through hazy sunlight, very Lynch-esque, with its juxtaposting of the seemingly orderly 'safe' suburban setting, against an underlying sinister tension. Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A feel good move with an excellent cast 2 May 2000
By A Customer
The title and subject of this movie might not aspire you to watch it, but when you do actually get around to seeing it you will love it. A young man with nothing ahead of him befriends a young girl who has no other play mates. They get along fine, until the dreaded moment when her parents think he has being touching her. This is a film that should be added to your collection, and well worth the price!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars People not fitting into the frame.
This movie contains so much beauty, surrounded by evil people, that it`s sometimes painful to watch.
I love this movie and its genuine acting. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Norwegian
4.0 out of 5 stars Careful! Latest 2011 release is edited/censored.
I own the previous release of this and was shocked to read other reviews of this new release which say it has been edited and censored. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Thomas Reilly
4.0 out of 5 stars Us and Them
This is a great story of loners of different generation finding a connection when the world seems to float around them, uninvolved, uncaring. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Haughmagandi
4.0 out of 5 stars tense and ambitious
Lawn Dogs is a very well scripted, tense drama shot through with off-the-wall humour and beautifully pitched between subtle psychological study, fairy tale and social satire. Read more
Published on 12 Feb 2012 by schumann_bg
1.0 out of 5 stars Still waiting for an anamorphic widescreen release!
A five star film on yet another one star DVD.

Despite the current Amazon description for this 2011 DVD release - "Lawn Dogs on disc comes in a 16:9 transfer that retains... Read more
Published on 17 May 2011 by Movie Fan
5.0 out of 5 stars Gem of a movie, transfer fine
I love films that cut the so-called American dream down to size. Lawn Dogs isn't quite up there with American Beauty on the style or complexity front, but this is a rare gem of a... Read more
Published on 2 Mar 2011 by Tim Kidner
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Marketing!
This film is about the relationship between a young girl (Mischa Barton) and the local gardener. Looking at the cover though, you'd think her mum (pictured) has more than a 'walk -... Read more
Published on 22 Mar 2010 by roger13
2.0 out of 5 stars Great film, mediocre transfer
I don't usually review (bias makes a lot of Amazon's star ratings pretty useless) but in this case felt compelled to, as in my opinion the product doesn't do justice to this... Read more
Published on 10 Feb 2010 by B. Raphael
3.0 out of 5 stars Tense but somewhat incoherent
Roger Ebert memorably described Lawn Dogs as resembling an accident at the symbol factory, and it's hard to disagree. Read more
Published on 17 Nov 2004 by Olly Buxton
4.0 out of 5 stars Top Class
It's great to see a film like this where you have little or no expectations and find the whole thing so compelling, funny and uplifting. Read more
Published on 22 Sep 2004 by Stalker
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