Many favorites, as well as a small handful of films that I don't care for... in no particular order (1960-2014).
A barren soundstage is stylishly utilized to create a minimalist small-town setting in which a mysterious woman named Grace (Nicole Kidman) hides from the criminals who pursue her. The town is two-faced and offers to harbor Grace as long as she can make it worth their effort, so Grace works hard under the employ of various townspeople to win their favor. Tensions flare, however, and Grace's status as a helpless outsider provokes vicious contempt and abuse from the citizens of Dogville.
"Evil can arise anywhere, as long as the situation is right." So says Lars von Trier on his own quiet, sly and quite frankly brilliant work, Dogville. A simple clean stage and a camera that focuses on nothing more than what it needs to, placed perfectly as if we're watching a book unfold. Classical music plays and a calming narrator reads text loaded with its own deeply dark edge of humor, as a tale of natural human vileness unfolds with an unmatched originality and extreme minimalistic beauty.
Dogville is dirty, harsh, dark and grim, and the slow decent into this in the almost three hour run time is disheartening in its human cruelty - made not unbearable by only the…
I’m blurting this review out just minutes after watching. Something I don’t normally do, but I just can’t contain myself, and know I’m going to have to re-watch more than once to write a proper one. Please excuse the ramblings.
Dogville has been hanging over my head for a while now. As per my usual practice, I tried to avoid any pre knowledge. All I knew is that a: it was Lars Von Trier, b: it was 3 hours long, c: it starred Nicole Kidman, and d: worst of all, it had ShakyCam. Not a good start. I have a mixed history with Von Trier, and I’ve only seen two of his films, Melancholia, which I quite liked, but was…
Holy hell. Dogville is as close to a visceral, visual depiction of pure, unfocused hatred as I have ever seen. It is not depressing, it is not sad, it's just mean. It is not misogynist, misandrist, or even anti-American; this is misanthropy, plain and simple. Here is the reduction of the flaws within every living human into their vilest essence, turning mankind into little more than, you guessed it, a dog - one that doesn't know right from wrong, and one that must be dissuaded from instinct and nature to perform in ways deemed appropriate by self-proclaimed moral superiors. Thus returns the familiar question of 'why' behind the film's production - as far as I can tell, the 'why' is…
Part lovely fable, part moral archaeology, part mirror, it delivers a scathing judgment on human nature, moral righteousness, greed and selfishness. And that isn't the half of it. An overt condemnation of consumerism, capitalism, and American imperialism, it lambasts every part of human nature exploited by capitalist societies.
It explores all of this in the form of a fable about Grace, a young woman of privilege who escapes to all-American small town Dogville, where the simple people living in hard times are romanticized to the point where Grace fails to see their human failings and forgives them anything because she owes them and because she is arrogant enough to believe that people living through hard times should be forgiven for…
I have tried to think up a review but I just can't convey my thoughts. This one is just... I mean, I liked it a great deal -- but at the same time it was horrible and made me want to die? It's a believable and slow descent into horrors, but the unconventional nature of its construction makes it almost frightening.
It's like that time I tried shrooms. It was mellow and subdued, but still terrifying.
Is any of this making any sense?
Those who remember my half a star ‘Melancholia’ review of a few weeks back know how I’m fully capable of hating on Lars von Tier, self-proclaimed legendary filmmaker with a catalogue featuring some of the strangest films (that are actually being watched) in modern history. For me to dislike something to the extent that I rate it that low, something about the movie must entirely put me off and only an extremely bad or an extremely good director can do so in my book. Lars von Tier is the latter kind of film-maker and proves to be so with this 2003 career-output: ‘Dogville’. Set forth in nine chapters and a prologue, it chronicles the years spend in the titular village…
The first two and a half hours or so of Dogville, before the gangsters come, are amazing. It's wonderfully anti-American and by that (so I thought) really, at heart, anti-capitalist, and on top of that entertaining as hell as well: Von Trier takes the types and spins one hell of a story yarn out of them, it's well acted, and the way it lovingly deploys hokey old-fashionedness for the express intent of tearing it down is utterly delightful. For a long time it kept me completely engaged, and that such engagement came with "good subtext" made it even better.
Eventually, however, the gangsters come and everything just goes to hell spectacularly. Such jarringly idiotic conjecture is said in an almost…
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
"Those who would give up essential liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."
- Benjamin Franklin
"What happened to the American dream? It came true! You're looking at it!"
- The Comedian, Watchmen
In the end, we're all dogs reacting to our nature - that includes even the most graceful among us. This is Lars von Trier's cynical picture of humanity at its bleakest.
During my times of frustration towards people, I'd seek out such misanthropic films to resonate a little bit of that pessimism in me. Boy, never did I expect for it to be taken to such extremity. This is a man that stands against everything traditional in cinema - goodwill among men,…
Favorite Lars von Trier film. Disturbing allegory for America. If this were a play, it would have won a Pulitzer.
Slow-burning, cathartic and driven by an exceptional all-round cast, Lars Von Trier's Dogville is a minimalist critique of the dark recesses, and twisted subconsciousness, of human nature, lurking underneath the cultural rules and social etiquette of 'civilization'. More than this, Von Trier's work is a complete vivisection of American culture, class and society illustrating in its haunting final thirty-minutes the only possible outcome for such a demoralizing system, and even more directly anchoring this through the ironic juxtaposition of David Bowie music and images of American poverty, in the credits. This is quite simply - Dogville vs Hollywood. 8.5/10.
A true masterpiece! Pure Genius! Brilliant, Briliant, Briliant!
Well - it's probable my favorite Lars von Trier film, but honestly the bar was not all that high. Also the least rape-y, but again that bar was also not that high. One of the most unique films I have ever seen - like a stage play on a large scale - the lack of sets or props are jarring and pretty cool. It's like this film is the antithesis of a Wes Anderson film. Great Cast, particularly Bettany who was mainly know to me as the Marvel voice of Jarvis. Loved the sounds of "imaginaty" doors opening and locks locking. Really liked the ending.
Un tanto descuidada y poco aprovechada en ocasiones, mantiene mucho el interés para lo que de verdad importa: su apocalíptico final.
θα θελα πολύ να σφουγκαρίσω το σκηνικό.
Originally a list made prior to Cannes 2014, now updated every mid-April.
This is every Palme d'Or nominee since the…