Directed by: Yorgos Lanthimos
Starring: Christos Passalis (Son), Christos Stergioglou (Dad), Michelle Valley (Mom), Angeliki Papoulia (Older daughter), Mary Tsoni (Younger daughter), Anna Kalaitzidou (Christina)
Country: Greece, European Cinema
Language: Greek (English subs)
Genres: Siblings-Family, Incest, Domestic Abuse
Plot – Spoilers:
A family of Father, Mother, Son and two Daughters live on a remote property. The Father has a cult-like influence on the Mother and the parents seem convinced about the dangers and impurity of the outside world, and so have literally built a world of their own in which they have secured their overgrown, yet baby-like children.
The kids who vary in ages from teens to 20’s have been trained to believe that stepping outside the property will cause death from dangers that include random cats. Their behaviour and daily life has been programmed and brainwashed into mechanical patterns and the kids follow obediently for the most part. There is enough evidence of brutal punishment to suggest past acts of rebellion or deviation from the parent’s scripts were met with instant reproach.
To make sure screwups don’t happen, the language at home has been changed so that the kids believe certain key words have a different meaning. For example, cunt is keyboard, salt is phone.
Dogtooth seeks to answer questions about the human spirit, curiosity and rebellion, and whether these can be thwarted in the most carefully constructed and cloistered world.
This is one of those movies which is essentially a collection of favorite scenes due to the bizarre nature of the world the family inhabits. But the scene following the trespassing cat, where they’re all on their fours, barking away with much enthusiasm is hilariously dark.