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Straw Dogs (1971)

tomatometer

91

Average Rating: 8.3/10
Reviews Counted: 33
Fresh: 30 | Rotten: 3

A violent, provocative meditation on manhood with some of the most controversial scenes ever shot for a mainstream movie.

No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 2

A violent, provocative meditation on manhood with some of the most controversial scenes ever shot for a mainstream movie.

audience

82

liked it
Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 22,261

My Rating

Movie Info

Sam Peckinpah examines the instinctual capacity for violence in his controversial 1971 film, loosely based on the novel The Siege of Trencher's Farm. To avoid the Vietnam-era social chaos in the U.S., American mathematician David Sumner (Dustin Hoffman) moves with his British wife, Amy (Susan George), to the isolated Cornish town where she grew up, but their presence provokes antagonism among the village's men. As the hostilities escalate from routine bullying to the gang rape of his wife, David

R,

Mystery & Suspense, Drama

David Zelag Goodman, Sam Peckinpah

Mar 13, 2001

Sony Pictures/Screen Gems

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All Critics (38) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (30) | Rotten (3) | DVD (34)

The most offensive thing about the movie is its hypocrisy; it is totally committed to the pornography of violence, but lays on the moral outrage with a shovel.

October 23, 2004 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Comments (13)
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Upon first viewing, it seems like a straightforward film, but the more one watches it, the more tension one sees in the relationship between the couple.

August 5, 2003
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mr. Peckinpah has made some good films (Ride the High Country) and a couple of great films (The Wild Bunch, The Ballad of Cable Hogue) -- which may be why Straw Dogs is a special disappointment.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times | Comment (1)
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Eyes Wide Shut -- and the cooked-up debates surrounding it -- are only about sex in the head. Peckinpah gives you sex as a kick in the groin, a jolt to the brain and a shot to the heart.

December 19, 2001 Full Review Source: Salon.com | Comments (3)
Salon.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A taut drama with great performances and a recipe for action and tension that modern-day thrillers could learn from.

December 29, 2011 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

But what if the mask of your neighbor tilts for a second and you catch a glimpse of the riot going on behind his face? What if you accidentally see the monster feasting on his prey? Now what if you're looking in the mirror?

October 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

It ends up hackneyed, unnecessary, and clichéd, improved only by the A-list acting talent and slickness of the production values.

September 24, 2011 Full Review Source: Paste Magazine | Comments (2)
Paste Magazine

Ugliness that must be taken seriously

January 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Cinemania

Anchored by Dustin Hoffman's seminal performance, Peckinpah's second masterpiece (after The Wild Bunch) is still one of the most provocative, controversial, and ambiguous explorations of actual violence and our reaction to screen violence.

July 28, 2009 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com
EmanuelLevy.Com

Gory and shocking.

March 26, 2008 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Um assustador estudo sobre o animal interior do Homem que, mesmo moralista, conservador e misógino, impressiona por sua complexidade.

April 1, 2007
Cinema em Cena

One of Sam Peckinpah's finest films, a relentless study in violence and machismo that is shocking, not only for its explicit gore, but for the degree to which it manipulates 'civilized' audiences.

August 30, 2006 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Peckinpah's treatise on violence and masculinity is disturbing on a fundamental level... and equally difficult to forget.

December 9, 2005
Flipside Movie Emporium

A meaty uncompromising movie from the masterful Sam Peckinpah.

December 5, 2005
ColeSmithey.com

...Hoffman delivers a stunning, unforgettable performance.

May 27, 2005 Full Review Source: Reel Film Reviews
Reel Film Reviews

A glimpse into the hell of our secret selves.

November 21, 2004 Full Review Source: Film Freak Central
Film Freak Central

Peckinpah's semi-fascist tale works both ways: as a dream of male territorial revenge, and as female rape fantasy taken to a shockingly unexpected end.

November 19, 2004 Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

Stunning study of human nature squeezed.

October 25, 2004

Director Peckinpah effectively explores the levels of so-called 'manhood' and takes them to a ludicrous but ultimately exciting conclusion.

March 1, 2004 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

plays out with ferocious brilliance

September 21, 2003 Full Review Source: Filmcritic.com
Filmcritic.com

Sam Peckinpah doesn't find anything to cheer about when his Man expresses his rage.

May 29, 2003 Full Review Source: ToxicUniverse.com
ToxicUniverse.com

Audience Reviews for Straw Dogs

[img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img]
August 23, 2013
Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Straw Dogs is a unique feat in the cinematic medium. This is a highly engaging picture with a talented cast and immaculate directing. Straw Dogs is a relentless violent picture that tells the story of a couple who move out to the countryside and they get terrorized by the locals of a nearby village. The plot is very well layered and structured and for me is one of the standout performances of actor Dustin Hoffman along with his role in Rainman. This is a must see film for film fans and it will keep you hooked right up till the last blistering frame. Now this isn't a horror film, but the events that transpire within the movie are quite terrifying in retrospect and it serves as a powerful and disturbing psychological thriller with slight horror overtones. The aspect of home invasion is always something to fear and is pretty scary. Even if this isn't a straight forward horror yarn, fans of the genre should seek this one out just the same. I very much loved the film, and I think that anyone looking for something truly riveting will surely love this. Be warned, this is a picture that is very violent, but it shouldn't turn you off it either. Sam Peckinpah crafts a stunning piece of cinema that you shouldn't pass up. Straw Dogs is a near flawless picture that is a definite classic. The portrait of its violence is raw and gritty and unflinching. This is what keeps you on the edge and involved from the get go. If you love Dustin Hoffman films, don't miss up on this one. The film blends all sorts of elements to make a picture that stands out above all the rest that comes in this style of storytelling.
March 1, 2013
TheDudeLebowski65
Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

After finally watching 'Straw Dogs', I now realised why this film was banned for over 15 years in the UK. There is a certain scene that truly shocked me, as it gave the worst message a man could receive. Despite this, I was gripped for the majority of the film. Both Dustin Hoffman and Amy George gave both emotionally and psychologically unsettling performances, they may put you off from time to time, but you will keep sympathising.
December 6, 2012
Samuel Riley
Samuel Riley

Super Reviewer

An amazing study on violence with a breakout performance from Dustin Hoffman.
October 28, 2011
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer

    1. David: Jesus. I got 'em all!
    – Submitted by Payam A (2 years ago)
    1. David: This is where I live. This is me. I will not allow violence against this house.
    – Submitted by Félix C (2 years ago)
View all quotes (2)

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Foreign Titles

  • Wer Gewalt sät (DE)
  • Straw Dogs (1971) (UK)
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