Dogtooth 2009 NR CC

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(69) IMDb 7.2/10
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A hyper-stylized mixture of physical violence and verbal comedy, Dogtooth is a darkly funny look at three teenagers confined to their parents' isolated country estate and kept under strict rule and regimen -- an inscrutable scenario that suggests a warped experiment in social conditioning and control. Terrorized into submission by their father, the children spend their days devising their own games and learning an invented vocabulary (a salt shaker is a "telephone," an armchair is "the sea") -- until a trusted outsider, brought in to satisfy the son's libidinal urges, starts offering forbidden VHS tapes in return for sexual favors.

Starring:
Michele Valley, Christos Stergioglou
Runtime:
1 hour 38 minutes

Dogtooth

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Dogtooth [Blu-ray]

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Product Details

Genres Drama, International
Director Giorgos Lanthimos
Starring Michele Valley, Christos Stergioglou
Supporting actors Aggeliki Papoulia, Hristos Passalis, Mary Tsoni, Anna Kalaitzidou, Steve Krikris, Sissy Petropoulou, Alexander Voulgaris
Studio Kino International
MPAA rating NR (Not Rated)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Rental rights 3-day viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

It starts of leaving you guessing about what is going on and ends the same way like there should have been more to it.
KR
Not graphically violent, but emotionally disconcerting, this film will insinuate itself into your mind--and it's absolutely unsettling.
K. Harris
The film takes place over a few days in the lives of the children as they are cut off further and further from the outside world.
Kevin F. Tasker

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 63 people found the following review helpful By K. Harris HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on January 28, 2011
Format: DVD
Certainly one of the more surprising moments of the 2010 Academy Award nominations had to be the inclusion of the Greek oddity "Dogtooth" among the Best Foreign Film nominees. This psychological freak show seems designed to polarize audiences with its controversial presentation of an isolated family as a horror construct. The film, with relatively no political or social context, is likely to be interpreted in many ways by viewers searching for a grand significance to the proceedings. Having seen the film twice now, however, I'm not sure that I can really establish the filmmaker's true intentions with any veracity. So I won't try. Somewhere between perverse satire, bent domestic drama, and disturbing psychological horror lies the film "Dogtooth"--a challenging and unrepentantly bleak, yet undeniably gripping and fascinating, example of experimental cinema.

"Dogtooth" depicts the unorthodox life of one family. The three teenage children have been raised in a controlled environment in which they've seemingly never left the family's secluded estate. Subjected to the teaching of their parents, they know nothing of the real dangers or inherent freedoms available in the outside world. As their story unfolds, in horrifying daily detail, the complete destruction of their psyches, intelligence, and individuality at the hands of their parents is absolutely repellant. This truly is one of the more disturbing depictions of psychological torture (even if the kids don't know it!) that has ever been captured on film. Not graphically violent, but emotionally disconcerting, this film will insinuate itself into your mind--and it's absolutely unsettling.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Roland E. Zwick on March 17, 2011
Format: DVD
****1/2

What if you could be the master of your own universe, able to make everything to your own specifications and liking? And what if, in that universe, you could have absolute control over your subjects, so that, not only would they have to do what you told them to, but you could even go so far as to shape the very way they look at the world?

The unnamed middle-aged protagonist (Christos Stergioglou) of "Dogtooth" has created just such a kingdom for himself and his wife (Michelle Valley), tucked away in a rural area of Greece, where the two of them have raised their children - a boy (Christos Passalis) and two girls (Aggelika Papoulia, Mary Tsoni) who are all now in their late teens - in such complete isolation that the kids have virtually no knowledge of the world that lies beyond the fenced-in little compound in which they live. They know only that it is a dangerous and scary place and that none of them will be able to venture out into it until their dogtooth falls out - which is to say never. They are so misinformed as to how the real world actually works that they think planes are just tiny objects moving through the air, and that if one of those tiny objects were to fall out of the sky and into their yard, the children would be able to pick it up and play with it like a toy. They've also been taught by their colluding parents to believe that prowling cats are a mortal menace to be destroyed on sight. The kids spend much of the day doing repetitive chores, playing meaningless games and being taught an incorrect vocabulary (they use the word "phone" when they really mean "salt," for example).
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Robert Taylor Brewer on July 9, 2011
Format: DVD
Dogtooth

A mid level industrialist raises his family in an environment devoid of most modern conveniences but imbued with a special hatred of airliners. The telephone is carefully hidden, only his wife knows where it is, a fence erected around the house is also a boundary the children and wife have never trespassed, but most of all, in order to keep his the two daughters and son uncorrupted, (their hatred of airliners and the people who fly on them apparently doesn't count) they have been taught a sanitized language where "zombie" is "a small yellow flower" and the female reproductive region is known as "keyboard". Periodically, the industrialist pimps for the boy, and for a price, procures the services of Christina, a security guard at the plant.

Just when Director Giorgos Lanthimos seems to remove all limits to the level of parental control, Christina shows an interest not only in the boy but also the two sisters, conferring on one of them VHS tapes of Rocky, Jaws and other classics in exchange for libidinous favors. The daughter, of course, emulates what she sees and hears on the tapes, and such an obvious clash of cultures ensues that it changes the relationships in the household. All of this sets up the question: does the influence on children come from parenting or from the culture around us? The film's answers seem ambiguous and unsatisfying. Thimios Bakatakis' camerawork is good but not inspired - we want some kind of resolution at the film's end, and Bakatakis seems determined not to give us one.
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