20 March 2010

Dogtooth / Kynodontas (Giorgos Lanthimos, 2009, Greece)

I don't know if I'm savvy enough to be able to even say how I feel about this movie. I might have loved it. It was certainly interesting. I certainly laughed a lot but I can't say if it was laughter because it was funny or absurdly horrifying or just shocking or what. Based on some of the reviews I worried about graphic violence or something similarly hard to watch but while there was one scene that had at least half the audience, including myself, covering their eyes and so forth it was actually pretty watchable. It's really a fascinating and, at least upon an initial viewing, a thrilling movie. It begins with a man driving a blindfolded woman with a security uniform. I almost feels like anything I could say about this movie would be a spoiler and it's a movie I wouldn't like spoiling for people, assuming someone might actually read this. It's about this family living in a nice house with a nice yard and a pool and giant fence surrounding the whole thing in what seems to be rather the middle of nowhere. The father works at a desk in an office. The mother stays home with the children, who all seem to be adults now (in their twenties?), though it's hard to say for sure how old they are. The inciting event, let's say, is rooted in the parents' apparent decision that their son needs sexual satisfaction. It seems like the woman hired to sleep with him might be their only contact with the outside world. The parents even remove the labels from food before bringing it in. (Speaking of labels, the children don't even have names.) The only movies they watch are home movies. The only book they seem to have is some sort of medical book guide that sort of reminds me of Our Bodies, Ourselves except it's not just about girlie stuff. When the children somehow come across words they don't know the parents make up new definitions. A zombie is a flower, for example. Basically, the film is about these parents trying to protect their children from outside influences in a way that is extreme and clearly insane. It's fascinating but the movie never answers many of our questions. It also ends in such a manner that is at once intensely frustrating and glorious. I think I loved it but I don't know for sure if it was love or novelty or titillation or what. I'd recommend it to almost everyone I know because almost everyone I know is totally the target market for this kind of batshit masterpiece. I'd also recommend they go in reading as little about this movie beforehand as possible because a pick part of this movie's kicks are it's surprises, which often enough make it into reviews... A-

1 comment:

  1. I was fascinated by this film, and like Ricky i think i loved it
    ... mari v