Dog bite dog and Lady Chatterley

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A bounty of sex and violence! Spoilers within.

Dog bite dog:

So I somehow convinced myself that I’d be better off seeing this on the big screen than in the comforts of my own home, where I’ve had the canal st. deluxe edition (courtest of Bake, of course) for several months. I’d seen the first 30 mins. or so, so I knew what I was in for, but I completely failed to consider why I hadn’t finished the film in the first place. And now, trapped in a theater, I was made prisoner, to the cinematic bloodbath, that is dog bite dog.

In general I am not of fan of excessive violence, but I’m willing to along for the ride if there are enough redeeming qualities. Take for instance, 13 Tzameti, near the top of my list last year, every bullet in the back of a head was earned in that one. In some regards I could say the same for dog bite dog. There’s a clever, revolting, backstory about the Cambodian hitman’s upbringing that does a lot to justify his actions. There is an interesting ambiguity regarding who ultimately is the protagonist of this film. The story reveals some nice surprises along the way, and is notably unkind to hostages.

But while I do feel the ride was exhilarating at times, the film stumbles too often for my taste. There is a major subpolt regarding the cop’s crooked father which feels totally contrived, and awkwardly revealed. There are some music cues towards the latter part of the film which are laughable, literally. Things get redundant too. After a while I was just exhausted and didn’t care anymore what happened. I just wanted it to end. There’s room for only so many knife-fights in a day. Sorry Bake, but I don’t see eye to eye with you on this one.

But I will say that it is the filthiest, grimiest, nastiest, bloodiest, thing out there. So if that’s your cup of tea you won’t be disappointed.

Lady Chatterley:

The new French film version of the classic English novel. In case you’re unfamiliar (which I was) this was a controversial novel in its day. Well, nothing in this film is so. And i don’t think it was ever intended to be. Apparently there are three different versions of the novel, and this film is based on the second one (?), which is actually the tamest one.

Anyway, this is a good film. This swept most of the French awards, best actress, best picture, etc., and got a great write up in the NY Times. It’s a real art house film, runs three hours, and is probably a bit of a chick flick too. I think that may be a turn off for some of you, but I really found something special about this film. It is incredibly slow moving, but I just fell in love with the cinematography. Every frame is like a painting. The story takes place on a beautiful estate in the country, some of the most gorgeous scenery I’ve seen on screen in a long while.

Marina Hands, the lead actress is a sight to behold. Her performance is wonderful. We watch her transform as her character experiences a sexual awakeing. Very impressive stuff. She is also quite beautiful and spends ample time fully unclothed. There is no shortage of full frontal. But, you have to wait a bit (sorry Bake, no pics). There are a few key flaws in this film, and one of them is the pace of the first 40 minutes. Way too leisurely. But once you get over that hump, you are rewarded.

Without giving too much away, I will say that the still at the top is taken from the best scene in the film. A really brilliant scene. One of the best of the year I’m sure.