Dogville Reviews

Top Critic
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
January 26, 2006
Ambitious, intriguing but fatally self-important ...
Top Critic
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
September 26, 2005
For all of "Dogville's" strengths -- its powerful performances, the ingenious staging, how quickly and completely the audience accepts its stylized reality -- its take-home message is, ultimately, measly.
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
New York Magazine/Vulture
August 7, 2004
There's nothing static about [Von Trier's] technique, but everything else about the movie is dreary and closed off.
Top Critic
David Denby
New Yorker
August 1, 2004
What Lars von Trier has achieved is avant-gardism for idiots.
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
May 28, 2004
Fascinating for a while but, in the end, just sleep-inducing.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Richard Nilsen
Arizona Republic
May 13, 2004
It's a tough sit through tough questions.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
April 22, 2004
You just have to see it to believe it. Frankly, I have never seen anything like it, which is not to say that it's good or bad, but it is different and even original.
Top Critic
Bob Longino
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
April 17, 2004
It's simply a movie whose bite is as harsh and hard as its bark.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Top Critic
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
April 16, 2004
A punishing film to sit through, and its rewards may well depend on how much credit you wish to give von Trier for doing something different. Because, for better or worse, Dogville is unlike anything else you'll see on screens this year.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Eric Harrison
Houston Chronicle
April 16, 2004
Slow-moving but engrossing, it feels shorter, and any reservations you may have about the unorthodox approach are washed away by its unexpected and purgative ending.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
Tom Long
Detroit News
April 16, 2004
Dogville is in no way a standard film and likely won't appeal to many. But Von Trier is so inventive, so outlandish and so filled with energy he has to at least be admired.
| Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
April 16, 2004
Nearly as powerful as Von Trier's Dancer in the Dark.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
April 16, 2004
Even at three hours, Dogville seldom bores.
| Original Score: B
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
April 16, 2004
Dogville is no different from von Trier's earlier parables of vulnerability and brutality. And like those works, it is the staggering, infuriating work of a visionary filmmaker.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
April 15, 2004
Dogville is not a masterpiece, nor is it an embarrassment. But it is a cinematic Rorschach test, as much fun to praise and to scorn as it is to watch.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
April 15, 2004
Dogville is a love-it-or- hate-it experience, but one that will fill a large space in any viewer's imagination.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
April 9, 2004
Yes, it plays like a baldfaced, brazen insult, but it is a stunningly accomplished one.
Top Critic
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
April 9, 2004
Dogville is another round of brazen disrespect from cinema's baddest boy. But the movie, despite its ultimate nuttiness, has a quiet, consuming power that sneaks up on you and doesn't go away.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
April 9, 2004
This is a seriously important film and a huge achievement.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
April 9, 2004
Dogville can be defended and even praised on pure ideological grounds, but most moviegoers, even those who are sophisticated and have open minds, are going to find it a very dry and unsatisfactory slog through conceits masquerading as ideas.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Glenn Lovell
San Jose Mercury News
April 8, 2004
A tenacious, brutal drama that dares you to turn your back.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
April 8, 2004
Life is too short for three hours of misanthropy and misogyny.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
April 8, 2004
Though certainly a failure in some respects, Dogville may be the most fascinating, richly accomplished screw-up you'll see all year.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
April 7, 2004
It's a brilliant idea, for about 10 minutes. Then the bare set is elbowed out of a viewer's mind by the threadbare plot and characterizations.
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
April 6, 2004
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.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
April 2, 2004
Brutally masterful allegory.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
April 2, 2004
Who but von Trier could make such a film? Who else would dare?
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
March 29, 2004
[A] bold experiment with an effective, bare-bones visual style and strong acting, but it's far too long, far too pretentious and far too sloppy, cheap and obvious in its anti-American bias.
Top Critic
Charles Taylor
Salon.com
March 27, 2004
In every respect other than sheer length -- in scope, imagination, execution, depth and spirit -- Dogville is a piddling movie.
Top Critic
March 26, 2004
The politics of Dogville are on par with a third-rate gangster picture: cheap, opportunistic nihilism, with no enlivening sense of humor.
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
March 26, 2004
This isn't cynicism. It's nihilism. And its brilliant, infuriating display here proves again that Von Trier -- exciting, maddening Von Trier -- may be finding unusual new ways to say things just as he's running out of things to say.
Top Critic
Megan Lehmann
New York Post
March 26, 2004
A stunning display of a filmmaker adventuring on the far side of what's possible.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Jami Bernard
New York Daily News
March 26, 2004
Brilliant and infuriating, wise and na´ve, outrageous yet unforgettable.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Claudia Puig
USA Today
March 25, 2004
Darkly funny, intellectually challenging and obliquely didactic.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
March 25, 2004
Von Trier, light years from the formula doggerel at the multiplex, delivers something rare these days: a film of ideas.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Stephen Holden
New York Times
March 25, 2004
While you watch the movie, it can seem ridiculously long-winded. But once it's over, its characters' miserable faces remain etched in your memory, and its cynical message lingers.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Jan Stuart
Newsday
March 25, 2004
An audaciously original feat of allegorical story.telling, one of those visionary achievements that stirs moviegoers into a fury and goes on to define a decade.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Scott Foundas
L.A. Weekly
March 25, 2004
Has rarely been far from my mind in the 10 months following Cannes, during which time it has grown only richer, deeper and more complex than I initially estimated.
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
March 25, 2004
Gorgeous, experimental, alive with a Scandinavian strain of chutzpah, and artistically elegant.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Top Critic
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
March 23, 2004
For passion, originality, and sustained chutzpah, this austere allegory of failed Christian charity and Old Testament payback is von Trier's strongest movie -- a masterpiece, in fact.
Top Critic
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
February 12, 2004
No matter how you come down on this movie politically, Dogville is a compelling chamber piece with constant cinematic surprises.
Top Critic
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
February 6, 2004
Maddening, challenging and audacious, Dogville is an unlikely masterpiece.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
October 8, 2003
Dogville is like climbing the Matterhorn with a cement block tied to your back.
Top Critic
Michael Rechtshaffen
Hollywood Reporter
May 20, 2003
Ultimately, all of von Trier's social moralizing feels as theatrical and artificial as the fake snow that falls over Dogville's chalk-drawn streets.