The Dog (2014) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Dog (2014)



Critic Consensus: Fascinating, evocative, and as unconventional as its subject, The Dog offers a colorful window into the real-life story behind a classic film.

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An intimate portrait of the vivacious John Wojtowicz, the inspiration behind Al Pacino's character in Sidney Lumet's Oscar (R)-Nominated Dog Day Afternoon. Coming of age in the 1960s, John Wojtowicz took pride in being a pervert. His libido was excessive even by the libertine standards of the era, with multiple wives and lovers, both women and men. In August, 1972, he attempted to rob a Brooklyn bank to finance his lover's sex reassignment surgery. The attempted heist resulted in a fourteen-hour hostage situation that was broadcast on TV. Three years later, Pacino portrayed his character instigating the unforgettable crime on the big screen. The award-winning film had a profound influence on Wojtowicz, and when he emerged from prison six years later, he became known as "The Dog." Filmed over the course of a ten-year period by co-directors Allison Berg and Frank Keraudren, and interweaving extraordinary archival footage on the robbery, 70s era interviews and the early gay liberation movement in which "The Dog" played an active role, the documentary captures the many sides of John Wojtowicz's larger- than-life persona: he is by turns lover, husband, soldier, lover, activist, New Yorker, mama's boy and bank robber. (c) Drafthouse
Documentary , Drama
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Critic Reviews for The Dog

All Critics (53) | Top Critics (19)

Questions of identity reverberate through The Dog, a documentary by Allison Berg and Frank Keraudren that chronicles Wojtowicz's storied and terribly sad life.

Full Review… | October 2, 2014
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

There's a brashness to this documentary that sneaks up on you.

Full Review… | August 21, 2014
Top Critic

Sidney Lumet's Oscar-winning Dog Day Afternoon was based on a true story - and John Wojtowicz doesn't even try to hide his glee in sharing every juicy, crazed detail in revealing documentary, The Dog.

Full Review… | August 14, 2014
Toronto Star
Top Critic

The result does justice to their subject's foul-mouthed charm and braggadocio.

Full Review… | August 14, 2014
Boston Globe
Top Critic

In numerous interviews that careen from profane braggadocio to tender reminiscence, the lustily bisexual Wojtowicz comes across as almost bizarrely self-satisfied.

Full Review… | August 14, 2014
Washington Post
Top Critic

It'll leave you alternately amused and slack-jawed in astonishment.

Full Review… | August 8, 2014
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Dog

'The Dog' is a very entertaining documentary about the man and the story behind the iconic 70s movie 'Dog Day Afternoon'. I like following the aftermath of the real life robbery like this is an unofficial sequel. 'Dog Day', one of my all time favorites, is so great that the documentary can't reach the greatness of the 70s classic but this documentary is still fascinating.

Vincent Snavely
Vincent Snavely

John Wojtowicz is a fascinating character with a story that seems almost too crazy to be true but I don't think this documentary got under the surface of it enough. It seems like some of the most obvious questions about the topics presented here (gay life in the 60s/70, describing the robbery, reacting to the movie) go both unasked and unanswered in favor of a somewhat meandering telling of his life story that glosses over significant pieces without fanfare. I give it three stars simply because hearing some of the things that come out of not only his mouth but his mother's is more than worth watching. In the end though this could have been so much richer.

Matt DeGroot
Matt DeGroot

If you loved Dog Day Afternoon, you will love this crisp well developed doc on the story that inspired it all. John Wojtowicz proves as dynamic a personality as Pacino.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

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