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My Life as a Dog (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] (1985)

Anton Glanzelius , Tomas von Bromssen , Lasse Hallstrom  |  PG-13 |  Blu-ray
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Anton Glanzelius, Tomas von Bromssen, Anki Liden, Melinda Kinnaman, Kicki Rundgren
  • Directors: Lasse Hallstrom
  • Format: Blu-ray, Color, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Swedish
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Criterion Collection
  • DVD Release Date: September 13, 2011
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0056ANHE0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #157,493 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

High-definition digital transfer, approved by director Lasse Hallström, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack

Shall We Go to My or Your Place or Each Go Home Alone? (1973), a fifty-two-minute film by Hallström

Video interview with Hallström from 2003

Original theatrical trailer

PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Michael Atkinson and an appreciation by the late author Kurt Vonnegut

Editorial Reviews

My Life as a Dog (Mitt liv som hund) tells the story of Ingemar, a twelve-year-old from a working-class family sent to live with his uncle in a country village when his mother falls ill. There, the boy finds both refuge from his misfortunes and unexpected adventure with the help of the town’s warmhearted eccentrics. Featuring an incredibly mature and unaffected performance from the young Anton Glanzelius, this is a beloved and bittersweet evocation of the struggles and joys of childhood from Oscar-nominated director Lasse Hallström (The Cider House Rules).

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite movie of all time. August 24, 2001
By alyosha
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
Few movies come this close to perfection. This is an intelligent and moving story of a boy who must come to terms with abandonment, loss and the casual betrayal of adults. Extremely well acted on all sides, with a bold script that dares to ask the important questions. Ingemar must try to find some balance in his life, as he is tossed from one "home" to another, like a stray dog... or, like the Soviet space-dog Laika, who was sent into space only to starve to death in orbit. "They never intended to bring her back." The final scenes of "My Life as a Dog" do win out, when the odd town's crazy old man takes a swim in the frozen river. The whole cast of peculiar town-folk come out to "rescue" him, and offer him a place by the fire, a blanket, a little whiskey... Here, Ingemar finds balance in the love of other people, so one is left, not with a sense of despair, but with a sense of hope in the midst of sorrow and loss.
Note: I recommend the subtitled version over the dubbed version, as the language and inflections should be experienced in full.
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ONE OF THE ALL TIME GREATS IN CINEMA June 28, 2011
By Peter M
A massive world wide hit when it was first released.Simply the greatest film about childhood ever made.An absolute flawless film in every way. The final scene combined with the memorable music will stick in your mind forever. A masterpiece of film making - truly unforgetable and exceptionally moving.I have seen it numerous times over the years.One of the ten best films I have ever seen.
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70 of 82 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars When bad transfers happen to good films... March 28, 2000
This was so disappointing to me. "My Life as a Dog" was one of my all-time favorite films. I already had it on video, and wanted to have a cleaner copy on DVD, as well as some features.
Worse, the transfer is grainy, and there seems to be little or no remastering. CRITERION would do a bang-up job on this film, it's just a shame that so many distributers can't get their act together and put a little effort into what they're doing.
If you want to hear commentary, see it in its original film ratio, or even see a decent transfer for heaven's sake, go to Criterion's web-site and send them a message that you want to see this film done right.
You might also go to Fox Lorber's web site, and let them know you expect more than VHS-on-a-disk. DVD, as a media, is in a critical state right now, and the studios are trying to see if the general public will accept bare-bones releases. We need to let them know that we won't.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the great movies about children July 5, 2011
I absolutely agree with Mr. Frazer. I first viewed the film over 20 years ago and to my tastes, it is one of the best films about children of which I am aware. I would place it on par with "Fanny and Alexander" and "Hope and Glory" (Boorman). The film does have a mild sexual content, but we allowed our son to see it even when he was young. (In the US some might not agree with this choice.) We've watched it again and again through the years. Similar to our experience with other exceptionally fine movies (and wines), it seems to improve with age. I would recommend it without any reservations whatsoever.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Heartwarming Coming-of-Age Tale January 3, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
"You have to compare," the hero of the charming yet poignant coming-of-age drama concludes, "so you can keep perspective. It helps to keep a little distance." A heartwarming story of growing pains, My Life as a Dog traces the tears and laughter of a thirteen-year-old Swedish boy struggling to find balance between the gravity of death and flamboyancy of youth. Carefully expanding the path of childhood through trials of time, director Lasse Hallstrom brings forth a moving tale unfolded in the eyes of Ingemar, a captivating boy whose heartfelt concerns for dogs burgeon into love for life. Inspired by the first dog sent into space by the USSR space program, Ingemar remains unscathed by life's tragedies as he bravely embarks on a journey to fit himself into a world of complexities. Stunningly portrayed by young actor Anton Glanzelius, the energetic, insightful, and often-troubled hero comes alive seeking joy of a sad life as his mother lies dying. Even as Ingemar and his brother are sent away to different relatives in the summer to allow their weakening mother rest, Ingemar is constantly haunted by memories of a mother with a "robust, sexy laugh" who never grows tired of his stories. Ingemar temporarily finds peace in his eccentric uncle's house as he shyly steps into the light and befriends a pretty young tomboy portrayed by Melinda Kenneman, who leads a contradictory life herself trying to cope with her growing sexual urges while maintaining a tough image on the soccer team as well as boxing floor. Read more ›
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars DVD quality is worst I've seen - get the video August 2, 1999
By A Customer
One of my favorite flicks of all time (after seeing it on video), but the DVD quality couldn't be worse! Real poor, amateurish conversion. Desperately needs a redo. Give it to Criterion Collection and let them do it RIGHT!
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33 of 39 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Criterion version came out March 11, 2003 March 12, 2003
Any review of this DVD before that time is not worth evaluating. They may refer to the older DVD but they have nothing to do with the new Criterion. The Criterion is a far superior release in every way. The transfer is very nice, with warm colors and vibrant tones, albeit a tad soft at times. Audio is DD mono but serves it's purpose well. Extras include a 1973 film by the Director a new interview with him, a short essay by Kurt Vonnegut and the original trailer. Adults may want to screen this movie before letting their children view it as there are scenes with nudity and a few sexual situations. Then again if your kids watch foreign films then they are probably more mature than most! The only drawback I found was that about 45 minutes into the movie the subtitles start to lag behind the Swedish dialogue. This only lasts about two minutes but it can take you out of the story momentarily (hence 4 stars instead of 5). With that as the only caveat, there is no reason not to buy this wonderful new release of one of the very best childhood films ever made. Strongly recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the two or three best on this theme
Insightful and nuanced, this ranks with "Careful, He Might Hear You" as a very fine depiction of a child caught up, as children are, in life-changing adult matters beyond... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Theresa Hoffman
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
one of my favorite movies
Published 1 month ago by chere johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars Timeless movie
Themes of abandonment, love, loss, and childhood joy are woven throughout this timeless classic. Saw it in the 80's in an art house theatre. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Pseudo Nym
5.0 out of 5 stars Uplifting.
Uplifting. Fun. Reminds me of being a kid. Recommended for all ages audience.
My girlfriend liked it as well as I.
Published 5 months ago by Dave Putnam
5.0 out of 5 stars The odd in the community of the odd are not so odd
A quirky film about a boy who does not fit in- not with his family, not with his school, not in his town. Read more
Published 5 months ago by MurphtheSurf
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best movies ever!
I saw this at a theatre years ago and loved it, I am so glad I can have it in DVD. The story is so precious and wonderful.
Published 9 months ago by Betsy R.
5.0 out of 5 stars An Outstanding Movie About Life In Swedish Families
Hallstrom has directed at least five films in English. He is best known for an early film, Chocolat, which takes place in a small French town, and Shipping News, which stars Kevin... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Zarathustra
1.0 out of 5 stars Poorest Quality DVD I've Ever Seen
Terrible quality picture. All grainy and dvd picture pixelates constantly. I tried on 3 different dvd players and they all do the same thing. Don't buy dvds made by this company.
Published 10 months ago by Wayne H. Sonntag
1.0 out of 5 stars My Life as a Dog
I don't know how they made this copy of the wonderful movie, but it was not done well. The disc did not play well in the DVD player, the copy of the movie was choppy, seemed to be... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming
This is my favorite movie of all time, by miles. While the story is told from a child's perspective - it is not a children's movie. Read more
Published 11 months ago by blank
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