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Mixed or average reviews - based on 39 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 160 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Lars von Trier explores the concept of goodness in this story of a fugitive hiding in a small town in the Rocky Mountains in the 1930s.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 39
  2. Negative: 10 out of 39
  1. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    100
    It really is a masterpiece--von Trier's first, as it happens.
  2. Mischievous, singular and profound.
  3. It plays like a baldfaced, brazen insult, but it is a stunningly accomplished one.
  4. 75
    Dogville isn't for everyone, but there's some intellectually stimulating conversation fodder for those with the patience to navigate the film's rough terrain.
  5. The film centers almost entirely on the faces of the townspeople, which Von Trier frames vividly. There’s nothing static about his technique, but everything else about the movie is dreary and closed off.
  6. A provocation, a coup de théâtre and three hours of tedious experimentation.
  7. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    10
    The politics of Dogville are on par with a third-rate gangster picture: cheap, opportunistic nihilism, with no enlivening sense of humor.

See all 39 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 51 out of 63
  2. Negative: 10 out of 63
  1. PatP
    Dec 24, 2005
    10
    To say that I was "reluctant" to watch this movie would be a massive understatement. I exerted a lot of effort in avoiding it as long as I To say that I was "reluctant" to watch this movie would be a massive understatement. I exerted a lot of effort in avoiding it as long as I possibly could, but once I was forced to watch it, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I feel the critics far over-emphasize the cynicism of this movie and take it as an assault on all things Americana, but I perceived it as a surpisingly funny ultra dark comedy. While I expected it to be slow and depressing, it was actually slow and hilarious. Clearly, it's not for everyone, but if you can laugh at a little misery, then give this film a chance. Expand
  2. Dec 23, 2013
    10
    A very strong, heavy perspective about humanity. In my opinion this is the best movie Trier has directed so far. Nicole Kidman fits in herA very strong, heavy perspective about humanity. In my opinion this is the best movie Trier has directed so far. Nicole Kidman fits in her role perfectly. The visual look of this movie makes it complete. Masterpiece. Expand
  3. Oct 8, 2010
    10
    Beautiful and inventive. Philosophical and thought-provoking.
    Ugly and dull. Boring and mind-numbing.
    Both equally justified responses to
    Beautiful and inventive. Philosophical and thought-provoking.
    Ugly and dull. Boring and mind-numbing.
    Both equally justified responses to Lars von Trier's experimental drama Dogville. As the wonderful Bjork once said, you don't know anything until you've tasted all the sweets at the sweet shop. Go ahead and watch it. Sure, you may turn it off after the first 15 minutes, you may find the rape scenes overboard and you may find it pompous, but you also might, like me, think it is a fabulous portrayal of human behaviour and a brilliantly made film. Just, like the protagonist Grace, take a chance on Dogville. You may love yourself for it.
    Expand
  4. S.Gold
    Feb 20, 2006
    9
    Strong, entertaining, artsy all for a 3 hour film. Features great acting and directing, an interesting, but sad film.
  5. JoshC.
    Jan 14, 2007
    8
    From the gooseberries in Ma Ginger's garden to the German Hummels Nicole Kidman's Grace collects throughout her stay in Dogville, From the gooseberries in Ma Ginger's garden to the German Hummels Nicole Kidman's Grace collects throughout her stay in Dogville, everything in Lars Von Trier's "Dogville" is a symbolic gesture of some kind. Narrated by John Hurt, this acerbic "illustration" of a small town's curious notions of entitlement unspools as a Christian allegory by way of Mark Twain or Dr. Seuss. Von Trier understands that the root of American aggression is the arrogant elite's subjugation of the culturally underprivileged. The director walks a fine line: Dogville isn't anti-American, but anti-oppression. Expand
  6. TonyB.
    Oct 31, 2005
    7
    Not totally successful in that it drags a bit and has some editing deficiencies, Dogville is still an extremely interesting and startingly Not totally successful in that it drags a bit and has some editing deficiencies, Dogville is still an extremely interesting and startingly original film that understandably garnered mixed reactions from both the critics and the public. Audiences stayed away in droves and thus missed the opportunity to see Nicole Kidman give yet another outstanding performance. The best supporting work here comes from Patricia Clarkson, Ben Gazarra and, especially, James Caan. The film was criticized for being anti-American, which it isn't, and anti-human, which it isn't either. It is simply depicting the horrible ways a group of people can behave in certain situations and the price they sometimes pay for that behavior. Expand
  7. PeterPan
    Feb 14, 2006
    0
    First of all, I would not call this a film. It is, as others already mentioned, an experiment and IMHO, an insult to real cinematography. First of all, I would not call this a film. It is, as others already mentioned, an experiment and IMHO, an insult to real cinematography. Some of you might think that Lars von Trier is a genius and consider the so called Dogma 95 an utlimate achievement in style. I don't. I would rather consider it snobbish pseudo-elitist garbage that serves mainly one purpose: giving a group of opinionated "intelectuals" a self-validation tool which has to prove their mental superiority i.e. "You morons, don't get real art and never will. Go watch 'Rocky VI' instead. Leave art to us to judge upon." I recommend reading "Emperor's new clothes". You know, it's not really about tailors and clothes. Expand

See all 63 User Reviews

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