Dogtooth [DVD] (2009)
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Winner of Un Certain regard at Cannes A mother and father, desperate to shelter their three children from the outside world, create a self styled utopia inside the walls of their secluded compound. The three children have never ventured outside and spend their days being educated and entertained within the limits of a strict and suppressive system concocted by their father. So far removed are they from the real world, they have their own vocabulary and believe cats to be dangerous wild man eating predators, aeroplanes flying overhead to be toys and small yellow flowers to be zombies. When the father invites a trusted outsider into their home to service his son's sexual urges, the domestic balance is disturbed and the protective bubble surrounding their lives soon implodes.
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Top Customer Reviews
Having invented a brother whom they claim to have ostracized for his disobedience, the über-controlling parents terrorize their offspring into submission.Father is the only family member who can leave the manicured lawns of their self-inflicted exile, earning their keep by managing a nearby factory, while the only outsider allowed on the premises is his colleague Christina, who is paid to relieve the son of his male urges.Read more ›
Many people seem to be put off by the dark tone of this movie, but the the deadpan black comedy electrifies this film. Dogtooth has echoes of Michael Haneke's direction and style of acting, and some of David Lynch's earlier movies such as `Blue Velvet' in its depiction of the sinisterly wierd in the familar and normal. There are some wonderful moments, including an awkwardly brilliant dance sequence by one of the daughters. The misinformation supplied by the parents creates some brilliant moments of surreal comedy and violence, not least the introduction of a cat.Read more ›
Essentially Lanthimos is asking the question: what would happen if a group of individuals were raised in a hermetically closed environment with no access to the outside world? The answer, according to Lanthimos, is humorous, tragic and sad at the same time.
The influences range from Beckett (the screenplay is taut, the exchanges between individuals taught) and Bunuel (the scenes of the family together in the same room) to Lars von Trier.
Dogtooth is an interesting social study which forces the viewer to question the rules by which society functions and should function.
Yorgos Lanthimos's shocking Dogtooth (2009) is set somewhere deep in the Greek countryside. A father keeps his adult family locked up at home, thinking he's saving them from the dangerous world by telling all kinds of lies so that they will never leave the property boundary.
This is such an interesting script by Efthymis Filippou and the director. It is frightening, not in the quiet, quiet, bang sense, but in the motivations of the father (Christos Stergioglou), as he believes he is doing the right thing, and on the basic of levels, this is what ever parent tries to do: protect their children. What makes this scary is that the children are adults, with the unquestioning behaviour of children. Adding to the fear, we wonder why the father has pushed this beyond protection and now manipulates his children. An example would be with words. At dinner one of the daughters asks her mother (Michele Valley) to pass the phone, when she means salt. It's at these glimpses into the strange life of the family that the fingers of dread creep up our backs. As the plot trickles along, these oddities increase. It isn't heavily plotted, the script focuses on narrative; how the story is told is the important factor here. It flips back and forth from the institutionalised world of the country house where the children lick each other, to the father's job as a manager in a factory.
Watching this reminded me of Ian McEwan's wonderfully dark The Cement Garden (1978).
Dogtooth is so original that it makes it hard to watch anything hackneyed again. A magnificent film.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An interesting premise but not fully explored and over too quickly. Would make a good play perhaps, but not exactly cinematic.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Totally, totally loved it. Would give it 6 stars if I could.
So much going on. Very, very similar to Miss Violence.
This is a gem.
Disturbing subject matter, worth watching just wished they explain the why!Published 5 months ago by Mr David A Tucker