When man’s best friend becomes his fiercest enemy…
A trainer attempts to retrain a vicious dog that’s been raised to kill black people.
A trainer attempts to retrain a vicious dog that’s been raised to kill black people.
Dressé pour tuer, Perro blanco, Cão Branco, Den hvide hund, Valkoinen koira, Le chien blanc, Trained to Kill, A fehér kutya, Cane Bianco, O Cão Branco, Beli pas, Vit hund, Die weiße Bestie, Білий пес, Белый пёс
Aside from the 300 point font screaming headline, "HATE IS HERE TO STAY" that hovers over the central story, this time around I noticed how Fuller's cynicism manifested in all of the periphery interactions of Krsty McNichol's character. The movie opens with the nice young woman taking a dog she hit to a vet, where she's promptly treated with the assumption that she's not going to want to pay the vet bill. She's instructed to post "found dog" signs and ask for a reward because, as the nurse suggests, she's probably going to want her money back. No chance she took the dog in and would be willing to pay just because she's compassionate to living things? Then a man…
racism is just a symptom. it's anger and fear that's been bred in, and maybe irreversibly.
"Racism is a poison that is learned, but once learned that poison can never be truly banished from those it infects." - Samuel Fuller, the lion of American cinema
Criterion Collection Spine #455
(Halloween Movie Fest 2020)
A bleak look into the nature of passing on racial prejudice, and the ability to not only teach a susceptible creature to aggressively hate, but also target and kill.
"Now look. That dog could have snapped off this black enemy hand. But look, it's-it's intact. And that's a spark of reconditioning."
I know from experience, there are few things more intimidating than a vicious dog barking and snarling right at you. Director Samuel Fuller's controversial film White Dog poses the question of what if a seemingly loving and protective dog, was actually trained to be a lethal racist predator. And the film reminds us this horrific concept is not just fiction, but…
Samuel Fuller tackled the subject of racism throughout his career, and something about his brutish, direct approach holds up as a surprisingly thoughtful means of addressing the complex, corrosive sin at the heart of America. White Dog is to the point even by Fuller's standards, introducing a lovable if ferociously protective stray dog, only to reveal a mind conditioned to attack black people on sight. Fuller triangulates the beast with the innocent, naïve young white woman (Kristy McNichol) who rescued him and the black man (Paul Winfield) who attempts to retrain him, casting the dog as the manifestation of racism as mental disease, not inherently present but gradually formed through trauma and teaching.
But while there may be Fuller films…
“You got a four-legged time bomb!”
In 1982 Sam Fuller made a poignant and extremely powerful film about intense racism in the world. The catch is that the film is disguised as a B movie about a killer dog. The film is not what it seems.
Let me start talking about the direction itself. Fuller’s direction in this film is stunning. The way the film builds up suspense is immaculate and there are not many who can reach the suspense that Fuller creates.
The direction is just amplified by Bruce Surtees’s exemplar cinematography which really just creates a painting of what the film is going to be. The composition and framing of the film is extremely important and it’s definitely…
I loved White Dog. It manages to do so much; balancing a small plot on such a heavy, hefty topic and making it thought provoking, entertaining and most importantly, memorable.
Controversially repressed in the USA for fear of audience reactions to being asked such direct questions on racism and hate, here is a very interesting article on its troubled existence.
White Dog is a powerful film with a purity to its film-making that I see too rarely, but when I do, it makes me thankful such films crossed my path.
Toda a dimensão de história social que esse filme alcança com tão pouco não é brincadeira. Acaba sendo um dos maiores exemplos de como trabalhar um roteiro teoricamente usual com chaves encenativas nada menos que mitológicas. Roteiro usual até certo ponto, claro, até pela temática do filme. O que no fundo diz muito sobre todos os filmes do Fuller, essa crença cênica que é potencializada por uma temática agregadora, uma fé mesmo na capacidade do aparato cinematográfico em concretizar um conceito. Não é fácil partir de uma dinâmica tão elementar e sair com uma obra que basicamente faz toda a justiça possível a esse método.
Reconditioning is like entering the eye of a needle - as though social circumstances affect ones psychology so much that it becomes part of their DNA..
"Why don't you give her a call and say he's 100% cured?"
"And that percent has got me in a corner."
This might only make sense if you've seen the film, but it reminds me of Fuller in 1997, talking about his WW2 regiment finding the Falkenau Concentration Camp, and saying that in that moment, if it were up to him, he wouldn't have taken a single prisoner and killed every Nazi in sight. Because like we see here, maybe you can change minds. But once the impulse is crushed into you, it never disappears. You can't unlearn an impulse.
Cynical auteur Samuel Fuller tackles the themes of systematic racism from the wildest and most inventive way possible - what if Cujo, but he only kill black people and the whole film is an allegory to racism?
The premise alone is strong enough and is executed in such a brilliant way where you get fully punched by the truth that lies within the context of the movie that serves as a bleak conversation on a topic that's ever more relevant today. Is it racism treatable or its simply incurable?
Performances by everyone involved is very strong, especially Paul Winfield as a black animal trainer trying to decondition this dog from attacking and killing black people. While his a vicious animal…
There's a dog barking in a garden behind our house as I write this. And Paul Winfield is dead :(
Can you say that you enjoyed a film if you spent quite a lot of its scenes cowering behind a cushion, looking away and generally being absolutely scared shitless? I don't know but I'll tell you something - THAT is how you do a horror film. No jump scares, just pure suspense and terror and a fear of the unknown and the unpredictable.
In fact, I doubt I have been more terrified of a film scene than the one where the little girl and her mum duck into a building a split-second before the dog rounds the corner. Watching the…
People who own domesticated animals trip me out. Its absolutely perverse.
shaken. that score. that ending.
Another terrific film by the great Samuel Fuller, unlike Shock Corridor where he showed strokes of genius in talking about racism, here Fuller elaborate and allegory of how racism can poison and fester even an innocent dog.
I highly doubt there is a film that shows so perfectly how racism is a worldwide enrooted problem, the 90 minutes is full of nihilism and cynism. It's a bold statement full of bravura from this talented director. The last minutes and the ending are fantastic, as wee see the face that manipulates the furry protagonist and how also he will contaminate eventually his two grandchildren with his vision full of hate
Terrificic acting, screenplay and if that was not enough the cherry on top is another tremendous by the late maestro Ennio Morricone by blending perfectly the notes along with this film. That final shots showing every angle of the dead dog, unrelenting and devastating.
o cachorro foi de racista a gordofobico slc
Et le chien n'a pas eu d'Oscar ? PARDON ?!
talvez seja o filme mais triste q ja vi em tempos
Bonkers in every way imaginable. Love the ambition.
Criterion Challenge 2021 - #16: 1980s
Samuel Fuller really is my kind of director. He makes very meaningful genre films with dense themes and thrilling moments of tension, and with his pulpy approach and embrace of touchy subject matter, he’s a tad disreputable. In White Dog, he managed to, as a white filmmaker, make a thoughtful film about race without making a fool of himself. This movie asks some profound questions about bigotry and hatred, and it’s debatable on whether or not those questions end up answered.
It’s a a brilliantly suspenseful film, aided by a top-tier Morricone score that’s both intense and tenderly innocent, which is perfect in a story about the taming of a dog trained to do…
It’s better than homeward bound.
Cibole que le monsieur sait comment réaliser un film.
Il s’en fout de la subtilité ou de la demi-mesure. Il utilise tous les trucs du gros livre du langage cinématographique et plonge dans le sujet, l’adrénaline dans le tapis, avec l’instinct d’un gars qui en a vu d’autre et qui a peur de rien (un peu comme Keys dans le fond).
C’est beau à voir. N’importe quel réal dirait « je vais shooter ça de même », pis on serait comme « ah ouain hein? Ce sera pas un peu too much? Limite campy? »
Mais avec Fuller ça marche, pis il réussit même à garder tout ça hyper chaleureux et humain.
Malheureusement, narrativement, juste avant d’entrer dans le troisième…
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