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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…
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
I hate Vera...and Tom...and Liz...and Chuck...I hate everyone.
Didn't really feel the 3-hour runtime. Kidman's performance is great. Wasn't sure about the stage at first (people keep talking about the great scenery around dogville, but we can't see it!) but after a while I thought it worked really well.
The end was gratifying.
Three hours very well spent.
I had, again, slightly higher hopes for this than ended up being on the money, my big issue is that the movie starts getting like really aggressively allegorical toward the end of the movie and it stomps over Grace's late-film movie development a bit and generally monkeys around with how well an otherwise-yet-again magnificent ending works, and generally this movie somewhat lacks the sort of emotional heft I look to von Trier for, for a reason I can't entirely place (the way the pacing compresses time, maybe?), but otherwise this movie is a lurking behemoth and leave it to von Trier to make an essentially three hour indie character drama work like absolute gangbusters. It's so beautiful, the entire set…
Näyttelijöiden elokuva. Von Trier yhtä pimee kun aina. Tarina yksinkertanen, simppeli, mutta todella vaikuttava. Kuten aina Von Trierin elokuvissa, pinnan alta löytyy paljon enemmän. Pureskeltavaa riittää. Samankaltaisuuksia Valkoisen nauhan kanssa. Kidman, Bettany ja Ben Gazzarra meitsin lempparit.
I am absolutely blown away. An amazing film, full of truths.
"You can't make a film on a sound stage with nothing but chalk lines and sound effects for sets!"
If you're Lars von Trier; yes you can. And even at three hours it's fucking riveting*. Insane ambition done right. Lars is my bae.
*does not apply to Manderlay.
It is a difficult film to watch, because it is like watching a play, which is not very common in movies, but it has an interesting story that keeps you aware of what is happening. It can be a bit long, but worth it. Nicole Kidman acts well as always.
Una especie de nacionalismo crudo se mezcla con una escenografía desnuda que no le sienta nada mal, por centrarse la historia casi exclusivamente en los personajes y sus relaciones.
Pero, cómo no, el arte como elitismo extremo está omnipresente en toda película de autor. A veces te pierdes con el mensaje filosófico, y a veces te quieres perder porque es aburrido y repetivivo, pero siempre interesante.
Ante todo, bastante bien. Sencilla, pero (y aún no entiendo cómo) entretenida.
I was so glad when the gangsters showed up at the end and killed everyone.
Combined the average ratings (Critic's & Users) from IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic and Letterboxd, and then weighted and tweaked the results…