Pig

2021, Mystery & thriller/Drama, 1h 32m

238 Reviews 250+ Verified Ratings

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critics consensus

Like the animal itself, Pig defies the hogwash of expectations with a beautiful odyssey of loss and love anchored by Nicolas Cage's affectingly raw performance. Read critic reviews

audience says

Slow and strange but well-written and acted, Pig has some profound messages about life for viewers willing to settle in for the ride. Read audience reviews

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Movie Info

Living alone in the Oregon wilderness, a truffle hunter returns to Portland to find the person who stole his beloved pig.

Cast & Crew

Critic Reviews for Pig

Audience Reviews for Pig

  • Aug 01, 2021
    It is hard not to see this movie in relation to a lot of Nicholas Cage's recent filmography. At every moment you think the movie will go one way (violence) it suddenly veers in another direction (empathy and understanding). Cage hasn't been this good in years and I think the surprising narrative has a lot to do with that. Ultimately it is a movie about hearing and seeing our fellow humans which is a fairly powerful statement in our current climate.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Jul 26, 2021
    Truffle In Mind – Film Review: Pig ★★★★ Writer-director Michael Sarnoski makes an auspicious feature debut with the story of a man searching for his stolen truffle-hunting pig. Caked in dirt, blood and looking not so much like a homeless man but as a person who died inside a thousand times over, Nicholas Cage gives one of his best performances ever as a man who seeks the truth at all costs. He asks his only connection to the outside world, Amir, played wonderfully by Alex Wolff, to drive him through Portland's dark underbelly to retrieve his pet companion. Although the film takes us to a rather unbelievable "Fight Club" moment, it generally holds its mood with credibility. It's a great calling card, not only for Sarnoski, but also for his talented cinematographer Patrick Scola, who brings a painterly quality to every single image. The film finds beauty in a bite of food, a breath of air, or simply the compassion between two main characters who have seemingly little in common. It's a shame the trailer elicits laughs when Cage utters lines like, "Who has my pig?" Clearly they want to sell the actor's neo-gonzo persona, but Cage brings so much depth and seriousness to this project, only raising his voice once. He deserves the highest praise for committing to such an oddly touching, gorgeously quiet story. At risk of sounding Dad-jokey, the only thing that hogs the scenery is his porcine friend.
    Glenn G Super Reviewer
  • Jul 23, 2021
    Whatever you may think Pig will be, chances are that you will be wrong. On the surface, it appears like it's going to be another John Wick clone, with criminals stealing the beloved animal of a loner who happens to be a dangerous man who unleashes a path of vengeance. There is no real action in the movie at all. The missing pig is the catalyst to bring Rob (Nicolas Cage) back from the outskirts of Oregon and to retrace the old haunts of his old life, but the pig is more a symbol of companionship and traces back to his time with his deceased wife (another John Wick nod?). Pig is really more a meditative and reflective character study to unpack slowly. There are deeper themes and messages here, and the fact that they're attached to a movie starring Nicolas Cage where he must find his stolen pig is all the most bizarre and exciting. This is unlike any Cage movie and, in its own way, feeds on the culmination of his own career of movies great and far from great. This movie feels deeply personal for Cage. There is an elegiac tenderness that permeates the whole experience. It's about loss but ultimately it's a movie about chasing your dreams. There's a reason the tagline for the film is, "We don't get a lot of things to really care about." If you're expecting a gonzo Cage irony fest, this sincere summation will seem completely mismatched. But this movie isn't a gonzo Cage irony fest. It's very much about different people dealing with pain and sorting through heartbreak, disappointment, disconnection, and taking stock of one's delayed pursuit of happiness. There is no irony to be found here, folks. This movie, called Pig, is bracingly sincere. There's a standout scene where Rob and Amir are dining at a fancy restaurant and Rob asks to meet the chef. It takes a moment but the chef recognizes Rob and is starstruck and asks if Rob remembers him working in Rob's own restaurant. He does, and Rob asks this man about his old dream, which was to open a pub-style restaurant, and why he capitulated. The man is initially defensive, citing the local market, but then he has to sit and think it over. It was his dream. It still is, and the fact that this man not only remembers him but also remembers his exact dream and calls him out, it's like having an intervention from someone who you never knew cared as much as they did. Maybe this man will proceed with his dream of opening a pub. Maybe he won't, but Rob reminds him and us how little time we have and to really spend it on the passions that positively consume us. To that end, you can see the parallels with the main character and Cage's own career. Nicolas Cage has long been an actor defined by excess to the point that he has a catalogue of outsized performances with ironic air quotes attached to them. The man owned his own island and named his son after Superman's birth name. He has been starring in more and more direct-to-DVD low-budget thrillers, as have John Travolta and Bruce Willis, who both rarely seem to attach themselves to theatrical releases at this stage of their careers. Some might term this the decline of his career, that he is slumming it, but to Cage it's just another gig. Unlike Willis, famous for shooting his part in a weekend while his stand-in works the rest, Cage is still putting forth quality effort. This might be a little psychological projection on my part, but Cage strikes me as a professional who enjoys his craft even if he makes some unorthodox choices. He has a passion for movies and he's going to seek that out because it's what defines him. We might not appreciate the projects he selects, we might not understand them, and they might even be bad, but Cage is taking the roles offered because making movies and acting is the thing he really cares about. His performance here is somber, touching, and suffused with ache. It's one of, if not the, most restrained performances of Cage's career and a reminder that the man can be a world-class actor. Structurally, Pig seems to reinvent itself with every scene, providing new answers and insights as we unravel Rob's past. It allows you to consistently re-evaluate the movie and characters and makes for a genuinely engrossing viewing because you know there will be something worth paying attention to with every scene change. There are people in the city who revere Rob, who despise him, who seem to be jealous of him, and we're discovering more and more what that life was like and what drove Rob to being a recluse. The movie rides a line of nuance and ambiguity where not every character detail and connection is spelled out; it's up to the individual to process meaning. Is this character grateful to Rob because his wife, who battled depression for years, had one significant happy moment she would reminisce over, Rob's delicious dinner? Is he jealous that a meal could make her happy when he seemingly couldn't? What emotional response does this man have? It's up to the viewer to determine the human response to passion and the evaluation of what passions are prioritized. The character writing finds that artistic middle ground of being nuanced but also being accessible. For a movie about a man searching for his missing pig, it's much more concerned with the man and his demons and dreams. It's a beguiling realization that a movie where Nicolas Cage searches for his prized pig might be one of the better films of 2021 and one of the actor's finest performances. The movie appears like it will be dark, scuzzy, and depressing but it's actually quite compassionate, humane, and encouraging. It's not a story about a man cracking skulls and crossing names off a list to retrieve his stolen pet. It's a movie about a man who left his suffering and who comes back and re-examines his life's choices and the choices of others. He may look like a bleeding hobo for the majority of the movie, but Rob is a force for good, reminding others of their passions, the urgency of time to chase them, and the importance of spending time with the people, and pets, that matter to them, our own selective families. Pig is an absorbing, poetic, and eminently kind movie and one that doesn't feel like it could have worked the same without Cage's professional legacy to build from. It's a small movie that will surprise many and reaffirms that Cage is always an actor worth watching. Nate's Grade: B+
    Nate Z Super Reviewer

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