Giorgos Lanthimos' Dogtooth is a constant reminder for me of what Art Cinema
should and can be. This film is complex, bizarre, and disturbing to watch. The
film centers around a husband and wife whom keep their three children completely isolated from the outside world. The father is the only member who ever leaves the "safety of their home". Their children are incredibly naive, and spend there days watching homemade movies or learning new vocabulary words like "Zombie" which in this families world means: A small yellow flower. As the film progresses, these children begin to slowly and subtly resist some of the parents techniques. We notice that this overprotection and sheltering is inadvertently causing the three children to perform quite sadistic games, which because of their lack "street smarts" appear to them to be totally harmless. The direction is very surgical, each frame was clearly thought out and really does a good job of relaying the alienation and smothering which the parental figures are causing. The film is very similar to Haneke's The Seventh Continent in this way, and really a lot of ways, which is high compliment. As borderline disturbing as this film is, its actually quite comical in the absurdist way to boot. One scene in particular being when the father tells his kids about the dangerous "cat" creature that lurks outside the confines of their home. He teaches the children about the dangers and even teaches them how to bark like a dog. The film's theme seems to be about over-protection and one's nature to lash out about such stringent authority/guidelines. Though the message is definitely true literally between parents and children, I imagine the director's statement might be more about his countries governmental practices. This is not a film that the average viewer will understand, with most likely finding it slow, boring, and just weird. Its a shame, because this is a very well done piece, and if you believe cinema is more than just entertainment, then see this film.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.