The evolution of an artist is discussed in great detail and it remains particularly informative when a viewer is given the opportunity to view this process in reverse - watching a filmmaker's debut feature late in the game, after seeing what they've grown into. Barking Dogs Never Bite is no exception, a solid debut which features the same idiosyncratic sensibilities, general warmth, and sense of deep-seeded empathy towards the human condition which encapsulates the South Korean director, Joon-ho Bong's later work. A debut feature, Barking Dogs Never Bite can come off a bit directionless - it is not nearly as assured in its unique style and pacing- yet the directors incisive intimacy, creative designs, and tonally divergent style is delivered via a singular perspective which refuses to be easily classified or defined by mere descriptors. Melancholic, darkly funny, and oddly compelling, Barking Dogs employs its peculiar narrative to reflect on the general detachment and malaise of contemporary modern life, detailing in its two main protagonists individuals who are metaphorically lost, their shared chance encounter being the catalyst which aids them both to find a sense of solace, even optimism, about everyday existence.
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