Short Attention Span Review - Dog Eat Dog (2016)
Dark as all get out, quirky at every turn, and punctuated by startling displays of violence, Dog Eat Dog is a comedy at heart. And it's a sick comedy, and several key plot points are nothing short of revolting, but damn if it isn't funny. Aside from dishing out disturbing chuckles, it also takes time to explore the nature of good and evil at the intersection of convenience if not need, and it asks whether or not a hardened con is more or less inclined (or even capable) of changing after spending time behind bars. None of the answers this quixotic offering from Paul Schrader provides are all that hopeful, and many of the biggest questions aren't really answered at all. This is a journey with an ultimate destination that is difficult to define, and there are several junctures where the line between reality and fantasy are blurred. In truth, I think Schrader was more interested in showcasing his talent and provoking the audience than in arriving at anything resembling a conclusion, and this may be both the picture's greatest flaw and its biggest selling point. Cage is on in a relatively tame performance, while Dafoe is at his best in a dizzying turn as a run of the mill fearsome lovable lunatic with bloody hands and a warm smile. I can't tell you what it all means, but I can tell you that I laughed way more than I should have, and I was never bored by this wonky caper flick from a tinseltown legend who shows no signs of mellowing with age.
Final Grade: B
|It can't be easy to out-crazy Nicolas Cage on set, but this guy got the job done. In truth, the script decided this battle in his favor before filming ever started.|